The Byrd Cage

Speaking With The Enemy

In Game Posts on March 15, 2012 at 8:32 am

We’ve got everything covered here at the Byrd Cage for you leading up to the big game tomorrow.  We even took some time to get some answers from the enemy.  Below are our questions to Georgetown’s blog, The Casual Hoya.

Let’s cut to the chase, what in the world is a Hoya? Really?

CasualHoya: Yes.
BelmontByrdCage: What?
CH: That’s correct.
BBC:  What’s correct?
CH:  What is.
BBC: A Hoya is a what?
CH: Exactly.
BBC: What’s exactly?
CH: What is.
BBC: I don’t know what is.
CH: I don’t know is third base.  A Hoya is what.
BBC: What?
CH: Exactly.
BBC:  Look, let’s say I want to start a blog about a Hoya.  I go down
to my mother’s basement, start up my computer, get on the internet and
start a blog about what?
CH: Exactly.
BBC: I start a blog about exactly?
CH: No, you start a blog about what.

*(Many years ago Georgetown was known as the Stonewalls, for the stone wall that runs along 37th Street in front of the university. Georgetown students, being insufferable douchebags even in the 19thcentury, translated the chant of “What Rocks!?” using the Latin for “what,” HOYA, and the Greek for “rocks,” SAXA.  Hoya Saxa = What Rocks.  Hoya= What.  Clever, huh?  But in the intervening decades, we’ve adopted a bulldog as a more animated mascot so really, short answer, a Hoya is a dog.)

What is the general feeling up there about getting the Bruins… again? 

I would have liked to play someone else to be honest, but not because I fear Belmont.  I just think the NCAA Tournament is the chance to pit two teams that haven’t played before against one another and getting you goobers again isn’t really all that fun, you dig?  So yes, I am gleefully aware that we played you in 2007, especially since you guys were the first hurdle on our way to the FINAL FOUR.  As an aside a team reaches the FINAL FOUR by winning NCAA Tournament games.

We know Georgetown plays a tough defense, but is there a particular style Georgetown matches well against?

Yes…wait for it…yours!  This Georgetown team has incredible length on the perimeter which has made it very difficult for opponents to be effective from outside.  The Hoyas held two of the better shooting teams in the conference in Notre Dame and Cincinnati to 18% and 10% shooting from three, respectively, and I suspect Belmont will have similar issues getting good looks, especially since Georgetown has a big height advantage on the perimeter.

Give us a brief history of your games against Mid-Majors.

Please see Davidson in 2008, Ohio in 2010, and VCU in 2011.  I’d love to tell you more about these games but I am beginning to throw up a little and need to move on.

Did any Mid-Majors give you any problems?  Why?

Oh, well this is just great.  OK, yes, ALL OF THE ABOVE gave Georgetown problems as all three of those teams liked to press and shoot threes.  Is this a style that you are familiar with? The losses to Davidson and VCU were somewhat made more palatable by their respective runs in the Dances in those years, but they still sting since Georgetown was probably the better team in both instances, especially in 2008.

So, is the Big East any good?

Well, the Big East has a 1 seed (Syracuse), two 3 seeds (Marquette and Georgetown), a 4 seed (Louisville), a 6 seed (Cincy), a 7 seed (Notre Dame) a 9 seed that happens to be the defending National Champion (UConn), a 10 seed (West Virginia) and a play-in game contestant (South Florida).  So yes, I would say that the Big East is pretty, pretty, pretty, pretty good 

Could you breakdown what happened to the ‘Yas in the Seton Hall game?

I’m sorry, did you just refer to the Hoyas as the ‘Yas’?  Well, that’s a first.  The Yas were terrible against Seton Hall defensively, but to be honest I don’t think anyone was beating Seton Hall that night.  The Pirates shot something like 60% from three and guard Jordan Theodore was ridiculous.  That game marked the last time that Yas guard Markel Starks started, as since then he has been benched in favor of freshman Otto Porter, a move that has worked out very nicely for the Yas so far.

Do female theology majors at Georgetown ever tell secrets and call it the “Hoya-Ya Sisterhood”?

Yes, this happens all the time.  Lots of secrets among female theology majors at Georgetown, by the way.  Lots.  Also, did you know that Georgetown once had a player named Ya-Ya Dia?  If I’m Ya-Ya I’m suing the crap out of those Sisterhood books for confusion on my name, because you know, MY NAME IS MY NAME. (The following video clip contains strong language)

Compare this team to the 07′ team Belmont played.

I’d say this team is the 2007 team a year before they became the 2007 team.  We once again have a smooth passing big man that facilitates the offense – Roy Hibbert in 2007 and Henry Sims in 2012.  We have a do-it-all forward who seemingly always makes the right play – Jeff Green in 2007 and Otto Porter in 2012.  The 2007 team’s offense was a basketball orgasm when it was clicking, whereas this year’s team just hasn’t gotten there offensively for one reason or another.  Yet, the 2012 version is a little bit better on defense because of the length we have throughout the lineup.  We currently start Jason Clark, who is 6’2″ but has the reach of a 6’8″ player, and the other four starters are 6’8″ and taller, with 6’9″ two guard Greg Whittington coming off the bench as well.  The biggest difference between 2007 and 2012 is experience though.  This year’s team is probably a year away, with 10 freshmen and sophomores on the roster.  There have been a few games this year (Cincinnati, Syracuse, Kansas, and Cincinnati again) where our youth did not serve us well in late game situations.

How did you feel initially when Belmont’s name was called on Selection Sunday?

I was so surprised that we ended up with a 3 and were able to avoid Davidson, Ohio, and VCU (our last three defeats in the NCAA Tournament) that I’d say initially I was overcome with joy.  Then I looked at Belmont’s schedule, and I became less joyous.  Then I heard every analyst and their respective mothers picking Belmont, and I became even less joyous.  Now I am downright angry with the disrespect that is being thrown at Georgetown considering Belmont has never won a game in the NCAA Tournament.  Do I expect to blog angry over the next few day?  Absolutely.  Do I expect to prove the haters wrong with my blogging?  Without a doubt.

 If we get by you, how far does Belmont go in the tournament?

If you guys get by us, I will not watch a second of the rest of the NCAA Tournament and may swear off college basketball for eternity, so frankly, I don’t know how far you go and I don’t care. Can you tell that the Georgetown fan base is a bit on edge right now?

Are you ready for the new Big East?

More like the Big Least! Count it!  The whole conference realignment thing is horrible.  Somehow college football, which is a vastly inferior product to the NFL, has ruined college basketball and its rivalries.  Think about how awesome Kansas-Missouri and Georgetown-Syracuse were this year, and then compare it to the SHITFESTS that were the Alabama-LSU games and tell me college basketball shouldn’t be the crown jewel of college athletics.  I think Georgetown will be fine, and college basketball will become much less territory based and much more nationally based in its rivalries, but a good piece of it will die when Syracuse joins the ACC, Missouri joins the SEC, etc.  It just further points to how inept, corrupt, and useless the NCAA is as an entity.

What happens in DC if we win?

Of the 620,000 people that live in the metro area, roughly 613,000 will not care and will continue to discuss current domestic economic and social policy over their morning coffees.  There will be about 1,000 current undergraduates that will be very upset, and the other 5,000 will go back to studying and being stupid idiots.  There are a bunch of alumni that will be crushed that live in DC, so call that another 5,998 people depressed.  Finally, two will be extremely joyous – John Feinstein and Sally Jenkins – both enjoy trolling the fanbase and writing “I told you so” articles in the Washington Post any time something goes wrong.

Name the first three things that come to your mind when you think about Belmont.

I think about 1) how I went to the Belmont when Big Brown had a chance to win the Triple Crown back in 2008 and it was 100 degrees out with 100% humidity and I nearly passed out on the Long Island Railroad on the way back after he flopped.  I think about 2) how much I enjoyed watching the Belmont in 2005 when Afleet Alex blew by Giacomo like he was standing still , and finally 3) I think about how much I enjoyed Georgetown’s beatdown of your Bruins by 25 points in 2007.

Without Googling, name another team in the Atlantic Sun.  Do you know what conference we will be moving to next year?  Do you consider this a move up?

I’ll give you three: Mercer, Stetson, and Florida Gulf Coast.  I know a dude who played at Mercer, and I’ve even been to Stetson, so I probably qualify for some sort of A-Sun tattoo.  BRAND ME WITH YOUR BADGE OF HONOR.

Are you all moving to the Ohio Valley? Simple answer – huge step up. Welcome to the big leagues and we’ll look forward to establishing a proper rivalry when the Big East disbands and all non-football schools are forced to join the A-10.

Belmont Superfan, Kevin Foster, asks the next two questions:

Ken Pom recently released an article about how little correlation great defense has to do with 3P%.  What is in your secret sauce?

I’m beginning to think that Ken Pomeroy is a robot like that #5 from the Short Circuit films.  Our ‘secret sauce’ on defense is our size and incredibly long arms.  Jason Clark, Otto Porter and Greg Whittington especially all have freakishly long arms that allow them to contest shots even if they are beaten by a step.  By the way, Short Circuit was way ahead of its time.  You can make an argument that there really hasn’t been a better robot-based film since then.

Georgetown has a storied basketball program and, according to my highly involved Wikipedia browsing, it’s also the oldest Jesuit University in the country.  Belmont is a growing mid-major power and is often somewhat accurately characterized as a hip evangelical school.  What are the chances anyone plays up the Reformation angle leading up to this game aside from me?  The scale is literally no chance you nerd and Doug Gottlieb’s mouth falls off of his face talking about it.


Can we focus on that ‘hip’ and ‘evangelical’ angle you just played?  I’m not a big politics guy but what I do know is that whenever I see a group of evangelicals together it looks anything but hip and often quite scary – not in the ‘we’re going to come to your house and convert you’ type of thing but more in the ‘you’re not like us and also we’re going to come to your house and convert you’ type of thing.  Are there really hip evangelicals?  Does this mean there are evangelicals who look a lot like the hipsters that have overrun DC?  Do evangelicals have man purses and iPads and drink soy lattes while using things like bikeshare?  This is fascinating to me.  But back to your question, anything that would actually lead to Doug Gottlieb’s face falling off would be tremendous, so if you want to play up that whole Reformation thing so he gets rolling on it, I’m good with that.

Final score prediction time!  Do you think the game will be close? Blowout?  What is the final score?

I can’t see any scenario where this game will be a blowout, as the Bruins won’t run away with it and I suspect you can keep it close by heaving in a few soul-crushing threes along the way.  Vegas seems to agree, as the current line has the Hoyas favored by just 4 points.  Would I prefer a Hoyas blowout? Absolutely.  But I see this thing a bit closer, and I’ll call it for a final score of Hoyas 76 – Bruins 64. 


View Casual Hoya’s Q&A with us here.

  1. No hip evangelicals? Isn’t half of what you learn in seminary is how to look cool without ever being cool?

  2. The opening question and the Larry David clips are amazing.

  3. […] Cage are working on teaming up with the folks at ‘Arizona Desert Swarm’ like we did last year with those punks at The Casual Hoya. If they cooperate, it will be hilarious and informative, two of our favorite […]

  4. […] was a two-part post where each blog asked the other blog questions about their respective teams. Both blogs responded and posted their opponents […]

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