"Those" Cats went 12-1 to begin the season and have disappeared and haven't been seen since January 6th. There have been glimpses around the area that those Cats were near, but those glimpses ended up being nothing but that…glimpses. If you have seen "those" Cats, please inform Wildcat Nation as soon as possible by calling them at 555-5555.
Are they under your bed? Nah, that's where you keep all your unwanted junk. Are they in your closet? Nope, that's stuff with clothes and shoes, both old and new. Unfortunately, "those" Cats are no where to be found. Perhaps they entered the stage of hibernation once the month of January began.
Who knows…but one thing we all know, is that this isn't nearly the same team that we saw tear throughout their non conference schedule. With the exception of the Virginia loss, the Cats didn't play a close game, no matter what the final scores of those games are. The Memphis & Louisville games weren't nearly as close as the final score may claim. However, maybe "those" Cats thought that the season ended then.
"Those" Cats started out by pounding Cal & Stanford at home. They then went on to the Washington trip, which once was a cup cake once, and if, you got past the Huskies. That's when things began to turn. The Cats went up to Washington State and got upset. "Those" Cats were ranked 7th in the nation at the time, and we all thought, including me, that it was simply just a hiccup on their way to running through the Pac-10. Boy, did we think wrong. The Pac-10 is much tougher than I, or you, had anticipated. That still doesn't excuse the Cats for the type of mistakes they are making.
Turnovers, defense, mental lapses, inconsistency. "These" Cats are allowing their conference opponents to shoot 46% from the floor while allowing them to score 72.0 ppg. "These" Cats are also turning the ball over more (13 per game) than they are forcing (11.5). Add the continuous mental lapses, inconsistency, lack of leadership and killer instinct, and this is what it becomes.
Those are what "those" Cats didn't do wrong. However, those are the things that "these" Cats are doing on a constant basis and unfortunately, that's led to a 5-7 record over their last 12 games. Maybe it's coaching, maybe its confidence, or maybe it's too lofty of expectations by the Wildcat Nation. Whatever it is, the Cats need to fix things sooner rather than later.
Currently, the Cats sit in a tie for fifth place with Oregon. Realistically, the Cats could still manage to finish 4th in the Pac-10 and get the 4th seed in the Pac-10 tournament. Is that what you or I expected back in November? I don't think so, and neither did the players. Let's just hope that the Cats locker room is feeling the same urgency that we, Wildcat Nation, are also feeling.