(Ed. note: just now realized I wrote this but forgot to post it. So far the coin and I are both 1-2 with the Richmond game ongoing.)
(Ed. note pt. 2: with Richmond's win, the coin and I each move to 2-2, or about what you would expect a tossed coin et c. et c.)
I mentioned in a prior post that 2-2 was, effectively, the record you would expect a tossed coin to achieve when predicting the outcome of a binary event. As I previewed the A-10 tourney bracket, it became obvious to me that, being a thinking entity rather than fiat currency, I should be able to outperform the coin at Boardwalk Hall. The coin picked a win for the higher seeded team by coming up heads, or an upset by coming up tails. The coin and I both made our picks for the weekend's games, as well as a small wager. If I win, I'm spending the coin on gas station coffee. If the coin wins, it gets hot glued to a piece of cardboard and mounted on my desk at work. The selections are below.
Temple v. LaSalle:
Temple is a very good basketball team with four double-digit scorers and the conference's number two defense. Ramone Moore and LaVoy Allen are a formidable inside-outside combination, and Juan Fernandez is a better than average ball distributor. LaSalle lost to Xavier by 38 and has more of their shots blocked than any team in the conference. I took Temple, the coin took LaSalle.
Richmond v. URI:
Richmond can shoot the eyes out of the ball and has four players with at least 69 3PA shooting better than 40% from distance. Justin Harper is one of the best offensive players in the country and a matchup nightmare at 6'10". URI is not a great (or even very good) offensive team, but they force a lot of turnovers and have the conference's number one 3P% defense. Other than 7' center Will Martell, they don't have anyone within two inches of Harper's height. The coin and I both think that will be the deciding factor in a Richmond win.
|The coin was stunned like Dante; I was incredulous like Cheek.|
Xavier v. UD:
Xavier and UD have already played twice this year, and both games have been tight affairs. Xavier follows the lead of guard Tu Holloway, but also features three more double-digit scorers. Dayton's Juwan Staten is fifth in the nation in assist rate and a profoundly grim shooter. Forward Chris Wright carries the banner for UD but has never quite developed like he should have. The coin and I both picked X here.
Duquesne v. St. Joseph's:
The Dukes were a trendy A-10 pick early in the year, starting the second season 8-0. They have since lost 6 of 8 and are grimly clinging to the hopes of a good tourney run to spur their NCAA hopes. Their defense forces more turnovers than anyone else in the league, but they are dead last at preventing offensive rebounds. Their .607 mark from the line in conference play isn't going to help them protect any leads, either. St. Joe's is extremely young, but they're the best team in the conference at protecting the basketball. The coin took this as a sign and picked the Hawks in an upset; I looked at the fact that they can't rebound at all and went with Duquesne.
From that point on, the coin had Richmond over LaSalle, St. Joseph's over X, and Richmond over St. Joseph's. I had Richmond over Temple, X over Duquesne, and X over Richmond. No matter what happens, I'll keep you posted on our progress.