It's one of our most storied annual traditions: since 1998 the 'Bag has had the pleasure of surveying the remaining unbeaten college basketball teams in mid-December and presenting the Golden Soufflé, our award for the undefeated program with the worst creampuff schedule.
Over the years a few patterns have emerged:
• All but one of the Golden Soufflé winners have been schools in the South (the only exception being Pittsburgh in 2003-04).
• Four of the nine Soufflé winners have been SEC West schools.
• Six of the nine Soufflé winners reached the NCAA tournament, with four going to the Sweet 16 but none going beyond.
• Happily, every season fewer teams put together Charmin-quality non-conference schedules.
No fewer than 13 teams remain undefeated in college basketball, and while we don't think any of them will go on a run like Indiana's 1976 national champion (the sport's last undefeated team) some are more worthy than others. And so, as we kick off our look at this year's still-spotless Baker's Dozen, we're happy to present the 2007 Golden Soufflé to ...
Take a bow, coach. Not only are you keeping the Golden Soufflé in the state of Mississippi (after Southern Miss'
2005: Gillispie, Texas A&M (finished 22-9, reached NCAA second round)
2007: Kennedy, Mississippi
Let's break down the remaining undefeateds and separate the posers from the resume-packers:
Our apologies, but we've been on the road all week, so there's not a lot of time to answer questions. (Promise I'll get to more next time.) But here goes:
I'd say either Kansas or North Carolina, two legitimate national-title contenders that have pretty tame schedules until February. Speaking of the Heels, is anyone else concerned in the wake of
I want to see how Williams follows up his breakout, but it was definitely encouraging (although the 'Bag would like to send a positive word to the guy Williams replaced,
The 'Bag wishes he had the non-stop work ethic of
Hibbert's learning curve has been remarkably steep, too, which is why we're so fired up to see him match up against Memphis'
Many thanks to two readers who came up with other examples of four brothers who've played Division I college basketball:
The Mahaffeys (all at Clemson from 1959-70): Tom, Donnie, Randy, Richie. (David Alexander, Cherry Hill, N.J.).
The McCachrens (all at North Carolina in the 1930s): Dave, Jim, Bill, George. (Ted Keith, New York City).
Lastly, the 'Bag wants to send a get-well wish to
Send in your questions and we'll get to more of 'em next time ...