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Ole Miss Comes Up Short in Overtime, Loses 66-65 at the Buzzer to Charleston Southern

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The Rebs trailed by 12 at the half. To Charleston Southern. At home.

Kevin C. Cox

"So and so shot X-of-Y on the night, tacking on Z rebounds en route to an what'stheirface win over blablabla" you know how these things typically go. A brief explanation here, a stat line there, a tip of the cap to someone who performed admirably, maybe a drop of analysis, et cetera.

I don't wanna do that right now. I know it was an interesting way to lose a game, forfeiting a late lead on a questionable turnover which led to a last deci-second putback dunk, but outside of that there's nothing too wild about what we saw. Two bad teams played basketball tonight, with one playing just not bad enough to win after two halves of turnovers, fouls, missed free throws, and offenses predicated on the "oh, uh, hey can you shoot this kthx I'm gonna run in a strange direction" gameplan.

Ole Miss is, conceivably, a talented team. Recruiting rankings, returning stars, stats, physical attributes, and all the things that you use to measure a group of college basketball players point to this team being a dark horse contender for a "last team in" type of season. After tonight, we found that all of those traits can't make up for poor shot selection, a lack of organization, and an overall programmatic identity crisis.

All of what we just saw means that Ole Miss is most certainly not making the NCAA Tournament at this point. Yes, they could win a lot of games and turn it around, but do you really think that what you just saw is capable of winning enough good games to overcome such a terribly embarrassing loss? Because I don't, and I've never seen such thing in recent college basketball history.

And I know a lot of folks are going to disagree with my sentiments just now. That's fine. You're free to do that and you've probably got reasons to do so. I can be wrong sometimes, I think. I also can't really remember a team losing a game like this and then somehow getting to the dance without backdooring their way via a conference tournament title, something which is still very possible in the sense that an asteroid hitting your truck is technically possible. Because, c'mon, have you seen Kentucky and Florida?

This team's done. Pack up your hopes for the season and just keep watching because you like basketball. Don't bother thinking this team's anything other than the best of the worst teams in the conference, and be sure to feed me a pile of crow if I'm close to wrong about that.