Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Three Beautiful Things 03/09/20: Got My Mail, The Dons Intrigue Me (Zags Win), Gaels Win a Thriller

1. I'd had my mail held when I went to Spokane last week and the carrier didn't deliver it, as scheduled, on Saturday. This morning, our regular carrier rapped on my door and told me she'd been on vacation and didn't have my held mail because she had just seen the order telling her I had had it held. She apologized and told me my mail was at the post office.

No problem.

I welcomed the making a trip uptown. I picked up my mail, stopped at the store for a couple of things, and returned home and wrote out the bills that were in my mail pile, and had that pleasant sense that order had been restored in my funny little world.

2. I went over the Christy and Everett's and watched the Zags play the University of San Francisco. I am intrigued by USF. I heard their coach, former St. Mary's player, Todd Golden, talking with Andy Katz online a while back. He's a young guy, just thirty-four years old, and is committed to using mathematical analytics to guide him in his coaching decisions.

With the completion of tonight's game, USF played the Zags three times this winter and in played them very tough in five out of the six halves of action.

Tonight, the Zags defeated USF, 81-77, thanks in large part to some late game scoring by Joel Ayayi. As Byrdman wrote me, "Ayayi saved their bacon."

This is one game I'd like to rewatch because I'm intrigued by the difficulty the Zags have with USF and I wonder, if I watched again, I might understand better what USF does that succeeds against the Zags. Maybe, as some of my friends suggest, the problem is Gonzaga's. I think to myself, okay, maybe it's the Zags not playing so well, but there's a pattern here. USF has made things difficult for the Zags five out of six halves and I think Todd Golden is a cerebral coach who devises solid game plans. I think USF's efforts have had a lot to do with the Zags' problems. I'd just like to understand better what the Dons do. I am unable to quite keep up with these things in real time.

3. After the Zags' game, I watched BYU and St. Mary's, a game I though BYU would win, especially after the way they dominated Gonzaga the night of the Elks Crab Feed.

But St. Mary's hung tough with them and, in the second half, BYU's shots stopped falling. With a few seconds left in the game and St. Mary's down by a point, the Gaels' Jordan Ford hit a jumper from the elbow and St. Mary's won this thriller, 51-50.

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