CHARLESTON, S.C. — Fresh thoughts and observations from the Mocs’ 82-78 win at The Citadel.
Please raise your hand if you watched the Mocs instead of the start of the BCS National Championship game.
Those with your hands down missed an entertaining college basketball game. I said entertaining, not a high-level, or well-played game.
But the myth, the legend and the dominance of UTC senior forward Zaccheus Mason continued to grow. I’ll have more on that later this week in the pages of the Times Free Press.
He has five straight double-doubles. He scored 17 of UTC’s first 19 points of the second half. Coach Will Wade is figuring out ways to get him as many shots as possible.
Opposing SoCon coaches are going to lose sleep at least the night before those teams play UTC devising ways to keep Mason below his average of 19.1 points, 9.1 rebounds and 2.1 blocks per game.
Citadel coach Chuck Drisell told Charleston Post & Courier reporter Jeff Hartsell that he considered junking up his defense in the second half to slow Mason.
“The guys kept saying, ‘I’ve got him, I’ve got him,’” Driesell told Hartsell. “And maybe I was fooled a little bit because we had him in the first half. He played outstanding.”
And here is Hartsell’s article.
There’s a lot of choices.
Let’s follow up with what I wrote about for Monday’s newspaper.
We’ll say the stat is 2-for-the-century.
UTC won both games of a SoCon road trip for just the second time in the 2000s.
The other came in 2008.
Bursting the bubble
The Mocs have won four straight games.
Each of UTC’s opponents in those games are ranked 275 or worse in the RPI as of Monday morning.
Grand Canyon — 316. Maine — 320. Furman — 278. The Citadel — 345
The Mocs, who are ranked 298 in the RPI, have only toppled teams with losing records.
Their best win of the season seems to be against Furman.
There were a couple hundred folks in McAlister Fieldhouse, certainly less than half of the official 723 listed on the final box score.
At roughly 35 of them were behind the UTC bench and almost all of them are related to, or connected with UTC sophomore guard Tre McLean who is sitting out the season and could not make the trip.
McLean grew up in the Charleston area, played one year at Queens in Charlotte with UTC assistant Wes Long then transferred to UTC.
The clan had a second-half chant that made a few on press row, myself included, chuckle when Citadel players shot free throws late in the game: “2-4, 6-8-9, who’s that turkey on the line?”
Junior guard Rico White said: “I gotta let Tre know we appreciate his group coming out and cheering for us and making it feel a little like home.”
New Charleston experience
Uch’s Note: I typed the following on Monday morning.
There is a new establishment in Charleston that could be on the trend of new drinking establishments sweeping the nation.
The Bay Street Biergarten has taken the beer-drinking experience to a new level.
It can be a traditional establishment with a menu of food and beer with a server to deliver them.
Or… you can buy a card.
With that card, you can buy beer — any of about 200 craft choices — by the ounce by scanning the card then pouring yourself.
There is a walk-up beer wall with five choices. There are private tables with the tap and three beers available. And there are public tables with four choices of hoppy goodness.
In short, pay as you pour!
I’d like to buy a franchise for Chattanooga but our table bought too many umm… brats. They’re good!
Here is a link to the BSB website.
David Uchiyama is a sports writer at the Chattanooga Times Free Press who began his tenure here in May 2001. His primary beats are UTC athletics — specifically men’s basketball and athletic department administration — and golf, which includes coverage from the PGA Tour to youth events. He also covers other high school sports, outdoor adventures, and contributes to other sections of the newspaper when necessary. David grew up in Salinas, Calif., and began working ...