Missing Dogs

R KContributor IFebruary 23, 2009

Let the madness begin. It is February, and UConn fans are already penciling in their team as a No. 1 seed in the tourney.

Why shouldn’t the fans be all giddy about this year’s team?

Point Guard? Check.

Big man in the middle? Check.

Experience? Check.

Than why does this year's UConn Men's Basketball team leave me with doubt and anxiety? Because there is much more to a championship team than 12 players thinking they are No. 1. 

Comparing this years’ team to the ’99 or ’04 teams is unfair, but as a fan, I cannot help but notice the subtle differences that exist between championship teams of the past and this year’s squad. Whether it is the “sleepwalking” wins or the lack of punch-back mentality, this year's team is lacking the “it” factor that the previous great teams possessed.

To take it a few steps further, this year's team is missing the dagger to cut the opponent's heart. It is missing the slasher to cut through to create a quick bucket. It is missing the free throw shooter to ice the game.

The high poll ranking, although is not unwarranted, does not show the true picture of this team or the college basketball landscape, for that matter. Number one spots are obtained via attrition, rather than merit.

The top 10 polls are more unpredictable than the stock market. Every team, including UConn, has major flaws in their game—flaws that can be quickly exposed in a one-and-done scenario.

That does not mean UConn cannot prove me wrong in the Big East tourney—and beyond.

But from what I have seen so far, I do not see a Big East Title or a Final Four appearance in the cards for this year's team. There are too many holes unfilled and too many questions unanswered.

This team has the proper tools to be the best, but for some reason they do not seem to want to take the necessary steps to make themselves elite—and that is a shame.