I'm just curious as to what we would rather see from this team. I ask the question sarcastically, but I mean sincerely.
I see the close-to-really-goodness that many of you see, but this team doesn't look like a Top-5 or Top-10 to me. Preseason, my expectations were:
-Top 15-20 team
- Definite Tourney Team
- 50/50 Sweet 16 team, depending on match-ups
- 10:1 odds as an Elite 8 team
- Long-but-possible shot at a Final Four
I've been pretty consistent in saying this is a Top 15-20 team. At times they've looked great and like a possible Top-10 club, but they've only put together a "complete" game against a top team twice. I try to remind myself that this team's 6 upperclassmen (Marble, McCabe, Basabe, White, Oglesby, Olaseni) were all 3-star recruits.* Sure, some outperform, but others underperform.
If we assume a perfectly-consistent team loses to all the teams above them and beats all the teams below them, I'd say Iowa's almost exactly right there. They lost to Iowa State, but they also beat Michigan and Ohio State. My question: if you think this is a Top 15-20 team (no worse, no better) like me, would you rather they have done what they have (very consistent) or say, pulled out a couple more wins against Wisconsin and Michigan State, but also dropped games against, say Northwestern and Nebraska?
(Obviously, I recognize that the easy answer is: NEITHER, I want to beat Nebraska and Michigan and Wisconsin and Michigan State! Well, yeah, duh. If I thought this was a Top-5 team, I'd give that as an option. But, taking the season as a whole, i can't say I've seen strong evidence that the team is THAT good.)
*this is one reason why not get Ulis hurt "me" somewhat. I think he has the real talent to be a developing player in the same mold as Gesell and Woodbury. He might not make a huge impact right off the bat due to his size, but as he adjusts, I think he could have been an All-B1G 1st/2nd team contender.