UTC Men's Basketball Purpose-Driven Road Trip

Mocs are at Western Carolina Tonight

Thursday, February 28, 2013 - by B.B. Branton

Last Friday Chattanooga men’s basketball assistant coach Casey Long believed the UTC players needed to re-focus their efforts.

Less than 24 hours after the team’s embarrassing , uninspired, 94-68, home loss to UNC-Greensboro last Thursday night, coach Long preached about why the players are here and what they are playing for.

“I reminded them that this program has a rich tradition of winning and that they owe it to the coaches and those who have come before them to play with a purpose, a passion and sense of urgency,” said the first year assistant coach.

The Mocs took those words to heart and to the court as they played an inspired brand of basketball Saturday night in an impressive 72-68 triumph against Northern Division leader Elon.

“I told them that when I played here for coach John Shulman our number one focus and goal was to win the conference and make the NCAA tournament which we did my sophomore year in 2005,” Long stated.

Mocs at Western Carolina: The Mocs (7-9) must carry that same purpose and intensity from last week into tonight’s road game (7 p.m. 105.1 FM ESPN The Zone) at Western Carolina (8-8) where they have not won since Feb. 12, 2007.

Battling for a Tourney Bye: UTC and Catamounts are two of four teams fighting for the fourth and final first round bye in next week’s Southern Conference tournament.

Samford (9-7) needs one win secure the spot and is at Appalachian State (8-8) tonight, while UTC and W.C. go at it in Cullowhee, N.C.

For the Mocs to have a chance at the bye, they have to win both games this weekend (at App State on Saturday), Samford has to lose twice, thus giving App State and Western Carolina a two-game split and all four teams would be finish at 9-9. In that scenario, UTC would have swept the series with Samford and App. State and split with Western Carolina.

The Last Time …:  It’s been 20 years since UTC has won road games at App State and Western Carolina in the same season (1992-93) … ironically, that season, UTC won the SoCon title in Asheville, N.C.  where next week’s tournament will be played.

Coach Long Knows Road Wins: Coach Long was the Mocs starting point guard the last time UTC won at App. State (Jan. 2006) and Western Carolina(Feb. 2007).

contact B.B. Branton at william.branton@comcast.net


PHOTOS: East Hamilton Girls, CCS Boys Post MLK Wins

UTC Women Host Two SoCon Hoops Games

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga women’s basketball team will host Western Carolina and UNCG this week in Southern Conference action. The Mocs have won 11 consecutive SoCon regular season games and 44 straight home court matchups against the league.   Chattanooga is 9-8 overall and leads the league with a 3-0 mark with wins over Samford, Mercer and ETSU. The Mocs ... (click for more)

Walker Charged With Sunday Night Murder Of Girlfriend In LaFayette

A 29-year-old Walker County man has been charged with murdering his girlfriend, also 29. Sheriff Steve Wilson said David Ryan Walker was charged in the slaying of Candace Ann Hankins. He said she was killed inside a house on Wheeler Road in LaFayette and her body was found in woods behind the house. The sheriff said Walker called relatives to express remorse about the killing. ... (click for more)

Man With Gun Runs From Police At Hamilton Place Mall; Pushes Shoppers Out Of The Way

A man who was found to be armed with a handgun was chased by police early Saturday afternoon. He pushed shoppers out of the way during the pursuit, which included racing down an escalator.   Erwin J. Rogers, 22, of 6111 Nottingham Dr., is facing multiple charges.    Around 1:50 p.m., Chattanooga Police officers working at the Hamilton Place Mall ... (click for more)

Beyond Freedom Of Speech

Yes, most people know about the First Amendment to our Constitution, "The right, guaranteed by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, to express beliefs and ideas without unwarranted government restriction."  I being a "deplorable" draw the line when people block traffic, try to disrupt, and even stop an activity through malice and disregard for others. Case being ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: What Else $3 Can Mean

Orchard Knob Middle School, located on North Highland Park Avenue in Chattanooga, led every other secondary school in the state of Tennessee last year with 6.8 percent of its students expelled. So as people are working feverishly to keep the school from being taken over by the state’s Department of Education, allow me to pose a question. Last Friday during the last period of ... (click for more)