Monday, March 13, 2006

Big 12 Tournamnet Recap

The Aggies were awarded their first ever NCAA at-large bid on Sunday as a 12 seed. They drew one of the hottest teams in the country matching up against Syracuse in a 5/12 game from Jacksonville, Florida at 8:40 central time on Thursday evening (Much more to follow in a separate note before Thursday).

There is a great video of the team’s reaction on the A&M website:

Big 12 Tournament Recap

A&M / Texas (Saturday) Recap

Both of Saturday's games in Dallas were entertaining, but it was tough to be too excited after the Aggies dropped another close game in falling to Texas 74-70.

The good guys fell behind 43-30 at the half due to some poor shooting and a VERY active and effective 2-3 zone from Texas.

The three bruising frontcourt players from Texas (Buckman/Aldredge/Tucker) did not allow the Aggies to establish an inside presence and simply shutdown the paint. Couple that with a nasty dose of poor shooting from the outside and before you knew it, the Aggies were down by 13 at the break.

Josh Carter and Acie Law sparked a 14-4 run out of the half to get the Aggies back in the game at the 14:05 mark. The run also forced the Longhorns to switch back to man-to-man defense, a move that really opened things up for the Aggies on the offensive end of the court.

The two teams then traded baskets for a few possessions before the Aggies mounted their second run of the half. Acie Law made two free throws to cap an 11-4 run and give the Aggies a 66-64 lead with 3:39 to play.

Unfortunately for Old Army, Kenton Paulino drained a 3 on the next possession for the longhorns and they never looked back in-route to Sunday's championship game against Kansas.

PJ Tucker more than atoned for his shot-clock mistake in College Station 10 days ago by torching the Aggies for 26 points and 13 rebounds.

On the brightside for the Aggies, Josh Carter had a career weekend playing back in his hometown for the first time this season. Against the Horns on Saturday afternoon the 6' 5" freshman posted a career high 25 points and a team leading 7 rebounds. Carter was 8 of 12 from the field including 6 of 10 from downtown on Satruday.

On Friday against Colorado, Carter contributed 15 points on 5 of 6 shooting. Josh's performances earned him a spot on my 2005 all-tournament team (see below).

Kansas / Nebraska (Saturday) Recap

Kansas jumped all over Nebraska from the opening tip and was never threatened en route to a 79-65 free pass to Sunday’s championship game vs. Texas. Mario Chalmers led the way for the Jayhawks with 18 points and 6 boards.

Texas / Kansas (Sunday) Recap

Kansas again denied our friends from Austin their first ever Big 12 tournament crown by dropping the Longhorns 80-68 in the title game on Sunday afternoon. Kansas was led by 5
players in double figures and outscored the Longhorns by 32-7 in points off of turnovers.
Kansas’ top 7 scorers are all freshman or sophomores. They will likely be a preseason top 5 team next year and a heavy favorite to repeat as Big 12 champions.

The Aggie Hoops Report’s Big 12 Tournament Awards

Tournament MVP
Mario Chalmers – Kansas – Averaged 16 points, 4.5 rebounds and 5.3 assists per game

All Tournament Team - (averages)
Mario Chalmers – Kansas – 16 points, 4.5 rebounds, 5.3 assists
Russell Robinson – Kansas – 10.6 points, 3.3 rebounds, 7.3 assists
P.J. Tucker – Texas – 17.3 points, 11.3 rebounds, 4 assists
LaMarcus Aldredge – Texas – 11.3 points, 10.6 rebounds
Josh Carter – Texas A&M – 20 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists

The media chose Chalmers-MVP/Tucker/Aldredge along with Julian Wright-Kansas and Acie
Law-Texas A&M. Good to see Acie get some respect, but he was not A&M’s best player –
Josh Carter was.

Best Fan T-Shirts
1st Place – Kansas Fan – “Missouri Fans Wear Jean Shorts!”
2nd Place – Kansas Fan – “Why play with Roy when I can play with my Self?”
(FYI - Bill Self replaced Roy Williams as the coach at Kansas in 2003)

Looking Ahead – NCAA Tournament Edition:

I will put out a full preview of the Aggies and Orange later in the week. After being out of
the office for a few days I need to tie up a few loose ends this morning.

As you were.



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