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yoco :: College Basketball
(a sports weblog) news and commentary on men's college basketball and the ncaa tournament

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Sunday, November 21, 2004

Smart thinking,

even if Rick Pitino strong-armed the Seasiders into not airing the game.

At U of L's request, there will be no TV broadcast of the game at NCAA Division II Brigham Young-Hawaii. Pitino does not want to give Iowa, whom the Cardinals will face Monday in the first round of the Maui Invitational, any additional scouting opportunities.

I don't expect Louisville's hardball tactics to become standard operating procedure. Weaker opponents are unlikely to forgo opportunities for big-time exposure. And the networks would be none to happy if they were unable to find footage of a critical early season upset. As the Cardinals quickly learned in Oahu, anything is possible.

Not content to simply play the role of early-season sparring partner for the Cardinals, the NCAA Division II Seasiders led at halftime and were within three points with 2:36 left in yesterday's game at the Cannon Activities Center in Laie.

But Louisville managed to escape the ambush with an 89-79 season-opening win, rewarding coach Rick Pitino's gamble in scheduling the warmup heading into the EA Sports Maui Invitational.

"I thought from the moment we got on the plane it was a mistake, but we needed the game," a relieved Pitino said outside the Louisville locker room. "The more film we watched, the more we thought it was a mistake. In this gym they shoot lights out."

Note the double standard. Pitino was able to watch film as his Cardinals prepared for Division II Brigham Young-Hawaii. But he arranged for Iowa to be unable to watch film in preparation for their game against Louisville in the Maui Invitational.