Hmmm. This looked a lot like the Illinois game. Northwestern played hard and even outrebounded their opponent, but lack of offensive punch outside of Drew Crawford and John Shurna ended up costing the ‘Cats the game.
The positive today really was the hustle and rebounding that Northwestern showed. The negative was the fact that the center position with Davide Curletti was a non-factor and the ‘Cats really didn’t get much offense from Reggie Hearn or Dave Sobolewski either. Also, Northwestern missed some free throws early in the game and those misses are an issue in a two point game as they were in one point games vs Illinois and Michigan. The free throws and the number of silly turnovers were perhaps my biggest issue today as I thought that this wasn’t a very fundamentally sound game for NU. Sadly, that seems to have been the case since the loss to Illinois which was also the result of missing chances due to stupid turnovers and missed free throws.
Also like the Illinois game I’m shocked at NU’s last play. What the hell was that? Once it was clear that it was going nowhere with one timeout remaining I’m not sure why NU didn’t call one. It was pretty clear after Purdue switched when Sobolewski drove past a Crawford screen that whatever was planned wasn’t going to work. At that point a timeout needed to be called.
The lack of fundamental play from this team really has me frustrated and that last play looked so freaking stupid that I just want to throw things. Northwestern is now going to play Nebraska on Thursday to see who isn’t the worst team in the Big Ten. In a year when some people thought Northwestern was an NCAA Tournament team. That’s really bad.
Whether you agree or not it seems pretty clear that Bill Carmody will be fired at the end of this season. Personally, if I were Jim Phillips and I knew I was going to make that decision, I would seriously consider firing Carmody now. You’d get a look at what Tavaras Hardy, who by all reports is NU’s main recruiter as a coach, can do as a game coach and you’d also be able to start making subtle inquires for a national coaching search. At this point to sit through 11 more games where Bill Carmody is a lame duck in every way except an official announcement is just stupid. Let’s do something that actually makes it look like we want to move the program forward.