The UW-Milwaukee Panthers blew a 12-point lead to the Youngstown State Penguins and fell 73-69 at UWM Panther Arena in Downtown Milwaukee on Senior Night for the five UWM seniors.
Turnovers and unable to get good looks on shot attempts doomed UWM. Pat Baldwin’s late game strategies continue to be a head scratcher. They even had a 69-66 lead late, only to allow a 7-0 run. The loss also cost the Panthers to host the first round game in the Horizon League Tournament on Tuesday.
The loss drops UWM to 12-18 overall and finish Horizon League regular season play at 7-11. UWM will enter the conference tournament as the 8 seed.
UWM Athletic Director Amanda Braun, who is a terrible AD in my opinion (and opinion of several others), had it out for Rob Jeter and fired him after finishing in 5th place in the 2015-16 season, despite finishing 20-13 overall and 10-8 in conference play that season. I should also mention Jeter is the second winningest coach in program history, only one win behind the all-time leader. She also wouldn’t allow the team to play in the CBI or CIT tournaments that season even after donors offered to pay the fees to play in the tournament and/or host games in either tournament. Her reasoning “mediocrity is not our standard.”
In the four seasons (1 under LaVall Jordan, last 3 under Pat Baldwin) since Braun angered many and fired Jeter, UWM has gone 48-81 (.372) overall and 23-49 (.319) in conference play. Braun was correct that mediocrity isn’t UWM’s standard, because the standard is now failure and mediocrity would be a massive upgrade. Finishing in last place, fifth place, last place and now eighth place in the four seasons since.
That’s on top of losing the final 11 games last season and this season UWM lost the final five regular season games with three of them at home. I should also mention they lost the final five home games and went 2-8 in the final 10 games this season.
Maybe Chancellor Mark Mone should step in and hire an adequate AD to save the current dumpster fire that UWM’s basketball team has turned into. UWM basketball, in my opinion, can be such a good mid-major program like it was during the Bruce Pearl and Rob Jeter years.
UWM will play in Youngstown, Ohio on Tuesday to play the Penguins of Youngstown State again in the first round of the Horizon League Tournament. Tip-off is set for 6:00 PM (CT).