I’m going to begin my first recap of the season with the God’s honest truth, since we’re all good CATLIC folks: yesterday was the first time in my life I celebrated my WiFi being down, and nearly cried when it was fixed. There was an outage on my block in Chicago (thank you God) that started 15 minutes before tip, and wasn’t fixed until halftime. Could I have easily used my phone and watched without TV or WiFi? Absolutely. But even if I were a billionaire, I wouldn’t spend one penny to watch this team right now.
For those of you living under a rock (or those of you smarter than the rest of us for not watching), the Richmond Rams handed us our worst loss in three years last night in their half gym/half cafeteria known as the Siegel Center. We tied the school record for fewest points scored in a half, and almost beat the biggest point differential in the Grant-era (81-56 loss to Rhode Island in 2018 still takes the cake). The score at halftime was VCU 33, Dayton 13. If you’re not laughing even half as hard as I am after typing that, there’s bigger problems you need to address with yourself/your therapist/your God. I swore to myself and Blackburn that we would NEVER speak of a certain game ever again, but last night leaves me no choice: the last time Dayton came even close to scoring 13 points in a half was when we scored 16 against SLU back in 2016. Yes, you absolutely remember that game.
Dayton went 6 of 28 from the field in the first half, which amounts to a whopping 21%. They missed all 8 attempts from behind the arch, and finished the game making a total of three shots from deep. When my TV finally came back on at the half, the first thing I heard the announcer say was “Jalen Crutcher needs to lead this team”. We saw once again that if & when Jalen has a bad night, things don’t end well for us. Chimichonga led Dayton with 6 points at half, and his 10 total points at the end of the game tied him with – wait for it – ZIMI, for most points scored. Leading the scorer’s column for VCU was Nah’Shon Hyland with 28. Credit where due, VCU shut Crutcher and Ibi DOWN, holding them to a total of 9 points (only 4 of them belonging to Crutcher).
Unfortunately for the Flyers, Van Wilder wasn’t walking through that locker room door at halftime, and the carnage continued.
I don’t pretend to be an expert on basketball, so can someone please help me understand why Ibi and Amzil are always bringing the ball up the floor? What am I missing? Once Crutcher lost the ball around the 16 minute mark (which VCU then converted into a dunk), the game was all but over. Here’s another stat for your asses: we didn’t reach 20 total points until the 14:18 point in the second half.
We need those two geezers Statler and Waldorf from the Muppets to commentate the rest of this season. “Hey you old fool, you slept through the game!”… “Who’s the fool, you watched it!”
Not enough can be said about the commentary by last night’s announcers. Did I really hear them say “Three or four teams from the A10 will make the tournament, it’s been a STRONG year for the A10”? Or how about with a few minutes left in the game, “They’ll bounce back, the Flyers have character!” Give me a break. Crutcher was benched a little over halfway through the second half, and we waived the white flag. You know things are off the rails in Flyer Land when one of the undisputed Dayton diehards tweets this:
Under 8 timeout 2H down 48-24, turned-off the game. Cannot remember the last time I have done this.
— Tom Eggemeier (@TomDaytonFlyers) January 23, 2021
Way late on this one, sorry guys: pic.twitter.com/z3ZO0jMqi2
— Kevin Tuleta (@KTuleta) January 23, 2021
This is the part where a good writer would turn to the positives or silver linings to bring the readers back from the doom and gloom that this article has been so far. We’ll try our best. Luke Frazier got to make his Dayton debut last night, after being sidelined since mid-December with an appendectomy. Let’s not forget: Frazier was named the Division II Northeast Lakes District player of the year, the Ohio High School Basketball Coaches Association D-II player of the year, and was a finalist for The News-Herald’s Clark Kellogg Award. Say all you want about my beloved state, but anyone with half a brain knows Ohio high school hoops ain’t no joke. We have no reason not to expect good things from the kid. That’s the best I can do after a 66-43 beatdown last night.
Another silver lining: shoutout to Sully and Drew for personally delivering 50+ cases of Natty to student houses on campus last night – and to all the alumni who donated to the annual cause.
— Sully (@sullymygoodname) January 23, 2021
Tuesday night should be a real doozy, as it’s round one of the Arch Baron Cup against the 25th ranked Saint Louis Billikens. At this point, we could win by 40 or lose by 40 and I wouldn’t be surprised. Anyone who is still trying to calculate at-large scenarios, please email or DM me so I can help you find a good therapist. But remember y’all, it’s always darkest before dawn…and if losing to LaSalle, Fordham, and last night’s performance isn’t rock bottom, I don’t want to know what is. Unlike other fanbases (especially in the A10), you can’t keep us down. We’ll still be there, and expect to see you all as well. Wear RED, be LOWD, see you Tuesday.
*All game photos credit to David Jablonski of the Dayton Daily News, obviously.