Bubble Watch: Waiting In Agony


HOOVER, Ala. – Now Chad Holbrook has to look on from the sidelines just like the rest of us. The South Carolina coach saw his team eliminated from the SEC Tournament Saturday with an 11-0 loss to LSU. Now the focus turns to Monday’s selection show, where Holbrook’s club and many others around the nation will learn their fate.

Until that time, there is time to think and wait. Oh, there are things to keep busy like trying to work back channels to committee members, numbers crunching and scoreboard watching. For Holbrook, whose boss Ray Tanner is on the selection committee, some tasks are easier than others. But regardless of your situation, if you are on the bubble you’re not enjoying life much for the next few days.

Don’t take my word for it.

“I told Chad before the game that I am not envious of your position,” LSU coach Paul Mainieri said. “I have been in it too many times to remember to count. You spend your time thinking about all these other conference tournaments all around the country. When teams are upset and now there is an extra at-large bid that goes away. You get out the notepad and do the figuring out what will happen. It is an awful feeling to be in that position.”

Holbrook’s club had limped into Hoover after dropping eight of their ten SEC series – all of the eight losses in succession. They were not swept in any of them, though, and they hope that their challenging schedule strengthened their overall metrics enough to continue their season next week. But is just being competitive and avoiding sweeps enough? Should winning single games count independently regardless of how many times the teams played?

Mainieri thinks so.

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