Wed Dec 21 03:29pm EST
The last time Towson won a game, Osama Bin Laden was still alive, Maria Shriver and Arnold Schwarzenegger were still happily married and Foster the People's "Pumped up Kicks" hadn't yet gotten regular radio airplay.
Towson's losing streak stretched to 30 games and 358 days on Tuesday night with a 81-62 home loss against Manhattan. The Tigers (0-11) will go a full calendar year without a win if they don't beat Vermont at home Friday night and they'll go all of 2011 without celebrating a victory if they also cannot upset Virginia in Charlottesville on Dec. 30.
It has been 15 years since Towson last had a winning season, but this losing streak has been particularly dismal.
Nineteen of Towson's 30 losses have come by 10 or more points, including 10 of 11 losses this season. The closest the Tigers have come to winning during that stretch was a 95-93 overtime loss to UNC Wilmington in which they somehow squandered a 22-point lead in the final 14 minutes of regulation.
Towson's struggles this season are no surprise considering new coach Pat Skerry had to essentially rebuild the roster this offseason.
Leading scorer Isaiah Philmore transferred to Xavier shortly after former coach Pat Kennedy was fired. Braxton Dupree left to play professionally in Israel. And the indefinite suspension of leading returning scorer RaShawn Polk before the season left Skerry with just one player who played for Towson last season: redshirt sophomore forward Erique Gumbs, who averaged a mere 3.6 points.
Six-foot-7 junior college transfer Marcus Damas has averaged 12.3 points and 6.4 rebounds this season and 6-foot-5 true freshman Deon Jones has chipped in 8.2 points and 4.6 rebounds, though he's also turning the ball over at an alarming clip. And for next year, Skerry has assembled a strong class headlined by highly touted shooting guard Frank Mason then-eligible transfers Jerrelle Benimon (Georgetown) and Mike Burwell (South Florida).
Having some of those guys available this year would help immensely as the Tigers try to break their losing streak. Unfortunately, they'll have to be patient and hope that 2012 brings better times.
(Thanks, College Basketball Nation)