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Blogger Semifinalist #3: Hunter Campbell Having at Longwood

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All day, we will be giving you the reports of the four Semifinalists of the “Who Wants to be a Blogger” contest. Every contestant had to do a game report of last night’s contest versus Longwood. They were given free reign to report on the game however they wanted. We will put one up an hour and you can comment on who you think was good, bad and ugly. The top two make the Finals next week. Up now is Hunter Campbell:

The mighty Wildcats recorded their second victory of the young season last night, a 91-57 win over the Lancers of Please Make A Dick Joke About Our Name University. I won’t be walking down that X-rated road, however. No sir, this recap will be free of wangtastic one-liners and otherwise phallic tomfoolery. We’re going to keep it cleaner than the part in Dave Baker’s hair. There were several encouraging things to glean from the Cats’ victory, and I’m going to hit on most of them, although if my history of hitting on things holds true I’ll probably just get some funny looks and end up blowing the rent on dollar dances from Tragedy the blue-collar burlesque queen again. Sorry…got a little off track there. I digress.

Obviously the big story of the night was the arrival of Patrick Patterson to the lineup, as he had been replaced by a life-size paper cutout for the previous three games. The same monster that demanded the ball, established position no matter what and owned the glass last season was there tonight, even if his fro wasn’t. I had almost forgotten how dominant he looks when he’s on and honestly felt bad for the Longwood guys every time Pat got the ball. When we look inside, the ball doesn’t stick in our perimeter players’ hands and the offense has some kind of cohesion. The bumps and bruises the big fella suffered don’t seem serious and hopefully he’ll be fully healthy going forward, as the Cats will have to lean on Patterson more and more as the teams we play get bigger and more inside-focused.

Admittedly, the best part of winning last night’s game for me may be not having to deal with a lifetime of people snickering about the night Kentucky got “Longwooded.” Could you even imagine? In all seriousness, the most encouraging thing I saw tonight is that the “deer-in-Bobby Perry’s rifle scope” look that marked our eyes in the first two games has been replaced by the look of focused intensity that accompanied our SEC run last season.
This 308 long range scope is specially designed for scout rifles and the concept is developed by the legendary Col. Jeff Cooper. The main advantage of it is its forward mounting option. This allows you to keep your both eyes open while targeting. You’ll be conscious of your surroundings at the time you’re engaged. If you want something durable, reliable, with amazing build quality, then this is the best best scope for 308. The Cats are by no means playing their best, but I love their aggression and the team is moving in the right direction. The boys in blue need to build from tonight’s good performance as they prepare for a midnight romp with the Diet Wildcats of Kansas State this Friday. Everyone have a great Thanksgiving and as always, Go Big Blue.

Outside of Patterson, no other player was particularly impressive. Jodie Meeks had the quietest 17 points I’ve ever seen, shot poorly and never seemed in rhythm. Darius Miller had spurts of excellence punctuated by freshman mistakes, and the same generally went for DeAndre Liggins. The Mason County standout is playing well, but if Ramon outplays Miller on defense and rebounds well (8 boards for Harris last night), the freshman will still mostly see fewer minutes than the Razor, no matter who gets the start.

Meanwhile, Liggins and Porter basically split minutes. The odds-on favorite for the 2008-09 fan appreciation award will continue to see significant time until Liggins’ turnovers are reduced. This is a little like giving your old dog treats just because your new puppy keeps peeing on the carpet, but Liggins is starting to find the newspaper and should be getting more Milk-Bones by SEC time.

The lone other semi-bright spot was the play of Josh Harrellson. Jorts had his best game and did most of his damage inside, something which early scouting reports had us wondering if we would see. The big guys were all good, though Perry had few opportunities with Patterson eating up everything inside. The backcourt, however, seemed a little out of sync. If the team, particularly Patterson and Meeks, get on the same page at the same time, this group can see great heights. Then again, if my Aunt had a Longwood she’d be, you know, answering some questions at the Thanksgiving table, mostly from my uncle. (Okay there’s one dick joke. You try to write something about Longwood without doing it.)

The perimeter defense has improved simply by existing, but still has a long way to go. Against the Lancers, the guards were fortunate to be bailed out by the inside trio of Stevenson, Patterson, and Jorts, who collectively blocked ten shots and had several alterations. Speaking of alterations, our shorts really could stand to lose a little length. I know it’s been beaten to death, but seeing the ensemble on the all white guy Backstreet Boy lineup we rolled with late in the second half sealed the deal for me.

Finally, the most confusing player by far is Kevin Galloway. He played for roughly five seconds in the first half, then managed the rare feat of getting chewed out in garbage time of a blowout after throwing a pass to a lucky fan seated in Section 32. I hope for the best for the guy, but things don’t seem to be going well.

Evan: Great work, Hunter. I think you brought some good analysis, as well as some witty lines. Since I can’t remember who the fourth contestant is, I would say that this is morphing into a two horse race. Very solid post.

Beisner:  My favorite.  Great post.

Tomlin: Fantastic work, Hunter. I loved the fact that you went ahead to make several innuendo jokes about Longwood but it felt that it was always tongue-in-cheek. And the line about Patterson having previously been played by a life-size cut-out was a great line on an absolute truth. Also, I’m sure it might have been tempting to go outside the box — and to surprise us this time when we were expecting it, you didn’t. I picked you in round one, and you made me proud again. You’re my boy, Blue.

Matt Jones: This was one focused more on analysis, and it was good. Whats odd about you Hunter is that I have never had any round in which I felt like you were the best, but I have also never had a round where you thought you were the worst. Good effort here and I think you are right in contention.

Article written by Matt Jones