Sunday, February 26, 2006

Does "W" stand for CHOKE?

I popped over to Whiner Central to check out the banter. Here is one of the posts.

"Is this the biggest collapse in Badger sports history?
I'm not trying to be overly dramatic, but is the Badger hockey team experiencing the biggest collapse in the history of Badger athletics?

A few short weeks ago the Badgers were 18-2-2. They had been ranked #1 in the country for about 9 weeks in a row, many of them unanomously. A few short weeks later they are 1-7 in there last 8 WCHA games. This weekend's series they got absolutely pummeled by a team that is not in the upper half of the league and that had a losing record.

Has any other Badger team gone from such prosperity to the outhouse so quickly? The one I can think of is the 1977 John Jardine football team that started 5-0 and nationally ranked, to finishing 5-6.

So why such a dramatic collapse?

1. Were the Badgers overchieving that much in the 1st 2/3's of the season?

2. Did the Brian Elliott injury really deflate the team that much because it caused a loss of confidence?

3. Is this team just getting tired?

4. Is there some type of internal strife?

5. Should this have been expected because Eaves' teams have a history of sliding down the stretch?

I think these are all legitimate questions. The Badger defenseman in the 1st 22 games seemed to limit the number of quality shots that Elliott was seeing. Now the opponents seem to be getting more quality scoring opportunities than early in the season. The Badgers haven't lost any defensemen to injury so I'm wondering why their played seems to have slipped.

A few short weeks ago this team seemed destined to be hoisting a NcNaughton Cup, a WCHA Final 5 Championship, and an NCAA championship. Today they seem destined to go down as the team that had the biggest free fall in the history of Badger sports."

No, just their usual end of the year el'foldo!

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