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Letter to the Editor: Watch before writing

Published: February 10, 2006
Section: Opinions


Young Mr. Adams:
You need to watch some Illinois basketball and not just read about it or listen to the East Coast Bias of ESPN before writing your articles. Yes, Dee Brown is the unadulterated leader of this team. However, the team probably would not by any means be an NIT team without him. Would they be a Number 6 in the country, NO.

However, James Augustine is one of the premier big men in the country. He is arguably a first rounder or at least a high second round choice for the NBA. His quiet leadership is well known in the Big 10 and by knowlegable basketball people. When he is out of the lineup teams oft have small runs at the inside of our team. Brian Randle is flat our a shut-down defensive specialist who is quickly becoming an offensive threat. If fact, if Duke ends up facing the Illini I have posited that he will diminish Reddick's effort by half if not more. McBride has “finally” started to find his shot and has sustained three straight games where he has been deadly…yes, three games is not a season. But, I would recommend you watch out for this young man who plays strong defense and will be a double digit scorer for the bulk of the season. Jamar Smith is a freshman with the quickist release I seen in a long time and he has a deadly three-point shot AND he is becoming equally deadly ! and driving the lane. The rest of the Fighting Illini are shaping up just fine.

My argument is that you do not know this team. Memphis is a fine team but they have not played the schedule(read that conference) that the Illini have and I don't think they'll hang around as long as the Illini will. Gonzaga has a great player but a great player will not carry you far in the tournament because great teams can defense them. UConn is a fine team andwill be very, very tough team for anybody to beat, even my beloved Illini.

Now, as for those who read your column: I am a 57 year-old male who has 5 college degrees. I am now forced to retire as a disabled vet due to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Isn't Google wonderful. So, don't just read about the teams in the mix—watch them. And, don't assume about your readers! I'm sure your journalism teacher told you what happens then.

Still, I did enjoy your article. I always enjoy any honest effort in NCAA Basketball. It is my first love outside the truly important things of life.

Michael Van Strien
Clemson, SC