What the hell happened? In the last 10 days, the Rebel roundballers took a team named Kentucky to overtime and, four days later, more or less shredded South Carolina. Then they went and lost to LSU, 75-71, on Wednesday night.
In fairness, the game was close to the end. The Rebel men cobbled together a couple of snappy 9-point runs on either side of halftime, but a punch-for-punch second half got away from them in the end. Snoop White (2-of-6 from three-point land) — who plays some streaky damn basketball — gave Oxford hope early in the second half, before altogether disappearing after the 30-minute mark. Dwight Coleby, on the other hand — GOOD GOD, would that Dwight Coleby might steer his meteor into every game from here on out — continued his unmentioned-best-sixth-man-in-the-conference bid: in 20 minutes dude racked up 10 (hard-earned) points and eight rebounds (four offensive, four defensive); he also bought coffee for both teams’ coaching staffs at halftime. Helluva way to war.
Coleby was about the only Rebel to show up to play, though. Chief among the no-shows was Moody. If anyone knows of Stefan’s whereabouts and present condition, please contact Lafayette County police as soon as possible. After scoring the first three points of the game, Stefan went pretty much silent for the first half and ended the night 5-of-18 from the field. EOTC Hugh Kellenberger kindly offered up this:
LSU 38, Ole Miss 30 (17:54 2H). Not Stefan Moody's night.— Hugh Kellenberger (@HKellenbergerCL) January 15, 2015
Ole Miss looked flat all night. Let’s talk physicality in the paint. LSU is massive. The Tigers indeed outweighed Ole Miss on the scales coming in, and this disparity manifested itself early and often. LSU's Jarell Martin and Jordan Mickey collectively pulled down 25 rebounds, which outgained Ole Miss big men Coleby, M.J. Rhett, Sebastian Saiz and Aaron Jones … combined. LSU is big, yeah, but crash the glass, y’know?
What do we take away from this herky-jerky game? On the one hand, the Rebel men held their own against a hard-nosed basketball team comprised of physical and anatomically large athletes; limbs and bodies flew around both nets as few fouls were called; the game was nothing short of a wrestling match. On the other hand, Ole Miss’s shots from the field seemed at times hasty and ill-advised. Slow down, boys. Enact the process you achieved in Lexington. And for God’s sake, re-calibrate those three-point scopes; they've served you well in the past.