Bucket Dumping at Season's End: Washington 80 - Marquette 78

Be honest: Marquette went up 15 with 13 and change to go in the second half, and you said to yourself: "I'm not sure this is a good thing."  And, as it turned out, you were right, as Washington roared back to defeat YOUR Golden Eagles in the first round of the NCAA tournament, 80-78.

Tomorrow can be a day for reflection and appreciation and all manner of "boy, what a swell season that was."  That's fine, and that's how it should be.

Tonight (and maybe early tomorrow morning, if you drown your sorrows into the wee hours of March 19), on the other hand, is a night for Bucket Dumping.  Get it off your chest.  Go ahead.  I'll start:

My main gripe with Buzz Williams, in addition to his complete and total lack of ability to coach defense, is that after every game this season, win or lose, I had to hear Coach Buzz prattle on about how this team had no margin for error, how it didn't have the talent to compete with the best teams in the nation, how it was fortunate just to be able to keep games close in the final minutes.

When you're constantly telling your players, telling the public, telling your fans that -- in a nutshell -- your team has to be damn near perfect to have any chance to win, what do you expect to happen when your team runs out to a sizable lead?  Will they stay aggressive and continue to do the things that built the lead, or will they start playing tentative, doing whatever they can not to lose instead of whatever they can to win?  Instead of breaking the other team's neck, our guys took a few steps back and said: "Well, maybe they'll suffocate on their own."  Instead of making adjustments -- like, say, switching back to the zone when it became clear in the second half that Washington could take any one of our guys off the dribble whenever they wanted -- we do the same things and hope that the clock runs out with a sliver of the lead intact.

Tonight, that "we've gotta be perfect" mentality came back to bite us in a big way.

Until tomorrow.

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