Scooter Hobbs updated

It was some 10 or 15 minutes into whatever it was that LSU and St. Bonaventure were doing Saturday in the first round of the NCAA Tournament when curiosity finally got the best of me.

These Bonnies. What exactly is a Bonnie again?

I knew it was stuck in the back of my head somewhere, but wanted to double-check with a go-to source, trusty Wikipedia.

Therein, a Bonnie was described as something "attractive," sometimes escalating up to "pretty."

It's a Scottish term, of course, and the familiar ditty suddenly comes to you.

"My Bonnie lies over the ocean …" which Wikipedia defines as a "large body of water that neither the Tigers nor the Bonnies could hit with a base fiddle, let alone a basketball" during an excruciating start to the opening-round game.

There was nothing attractive about it, certainly nothing remotely pretty watching two tournament basketball teams combine to start the game 2-for-20 from the field.

At one point it looked as if LSU was trying to nurse a 6-4 lead into the halftime break.

St. Bonaventure's stated goal was to plod along and keep the score out of the 80s, and for while it looked like they might keep in the 8s while taking game back to the 1920s.

Yeah, it turned out to be a believable basketball score with LSU winning 76-61, but I can't get that opening 10 minutes out of my head anymore than the "My Bonnie lies over the …" ringing in my ears.

With the Indiana-centric Tournament they should have moved this game over to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, aka, The Brickyard, where most of the early shots went to die.

The Profanity Police even showed up when the officials T'd up LSU's Javonte Smart for whatever naughty word he uttered, probably in shock, at the sight of finally watching one of his 3-pointers find its proper target.

The impromptu research also uncovered that the familiar Bonnie and the ocean tune is a popular choice for various sing-a-long parodies, which seemed somehow fitting given the basketball parody that was playing out.

But it was a pretty slick move by the Tigers, whose reward is to play the East Region No. 1 seed Michigan on Monday.

The Wolverines victory over Texas Southern and former LSU head coach Johnny Jones started about an hour after the shenanigans in Bloomington, thus whatever advance glimpse Michigan got of LSU might have been before the Tigers got their act together and dominated the final 30 minutes of play.

The cold offensive start didn't bother LSU head coach Will Wade that much.

By Bonnie, he knows an aberration when he sees one.

"We were getting stops," he pointed out, seemingly almost surprised by the odd turn of events. "That's what I was more excited about."

Wade even allowed himself to daydream that his defense, never an LSU calling card, had something to do with it.

At times, probably yes. For the most part the Bonnies looked to have some open shots that turned to clankers and airballs.

Never mind that LSU was following its lead offensively for way too long.

"The offense always comes around for us," Wade said. "It's about getting stops and rebounding, which is what we did a great job of, and I knew as long as we were getting stops and getting rebounds, we were going to be in pretty good shape."

He was right of course.

It was somewhat mysterious why the athletically superior Tigers early on seemed content to play at the snail's pace St. Bonaventure preferred rather than forcing the tempo above a brisk walk.

And it wasn't until after some of the bombs started falling that any of the Tigers seemed interested in getting the ball into the paint, which certainly opened things up.

Maybe the explanation was that LSU in the second half seemed to have its most frustrating misfires 2 feet from the basket and in.

But there's one thing the TV announcers need to know as the Tigers continue this journey.

In this LSU offense, with this firepower, there's no such thing as a bad shot and very few forced ones. Not in their minds, nor their coach's. Nothing they'd feel guilty about or get benched for at least.

Some go in and some don't. Sometimes it takes a while. But this team is going to keep shooting from wherever the whim strikes. It's called dancing with the one that brung you to the Big Dance.

And if they plan to keep outrebounding teams like they did Saturday — a lagniappe luxury most of the season — they might just stay in Indiana for a while.

There won't always be as many rebounds up for grabs as there were against the Bonnies, but a 49-30 advantage on the boards was probably the key to an offensively awkward game.

You end with three players with double-doubles — Darius Days (13 points, 11 boards), Aundre Hyatt (13-10) and Trendon Watford (11-11). And freshman Cam Thomas taking over the second half for 20 of his 27 points.

On balance, a good opening — still with plenty to work on before Monday.

l

Scooter Hobbs covers LSU

athletics. Email him at

shobbs@americanpress.com

More from this section

No matter how much she loves her crawfish and Ponchatoula strawberries, it's still mind-boggling that Kim Mulkey is LSU's women's basketball coach.