NCAA: Wichita State Moves to AAC

A few years ago, the Big East was in shambles.  Some schools were leaving, while other schools that agreed to join the conference backed out at the last second (TCU, Boise State, San Diego State, and BYU were all rumored to be heading to the Big East at various points).    Eventually, the Catholic schools branched out to form a “new” Big East, while schools like Connecticut and Cincinnati branched…

April 7, 2017
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NCAA Championship Thoughts:  North Carolina Wins!

Going back to the first Thursday and Friday of this tournament, it looked like we may be in for a tournament that lacked its usual madness.    It didn’t start that way, as the very first game on that Thursday afternoon featured a potential buzzer beater in the Notre Dame-Princeton game that fell short.   There were other first-round games that had their moments (the Vanderbilt-Northwestern game had perhaps the…

April 4, 2017
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NCAA Tournament Thoughts 4/1/17: The Final Four!

Game 1:  South Carolina – Gonzaga Sometimes, when a team goes up by 14 points, you get the feeling the game is over.     Tonight, when Gonzaga got up by 14, I had the feeling the game had only just begun.  There was no way that South Carolina, after all of the thrills they were giving us during this tournament, was going to lay down and die, right? That…

April 1, 2017
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NCAA Tournament Thoughts 3/26/17: The Final Four is Set

92-69 in 1972. What does that represent?  The score of the North Carolina-South Carolina NCAA Tournament game back in 1972, won by North Carolina.  Why is that important?  It represents the only game this group of Final Four teams has EVER played in the tournament.  (OK, correction:  North Carolina beat Gonzaga in a 2-vs-10 game in the 2009 tournament.  My bad!)   You would think that Oregon and Gonzaga would have…

March 26, 2017
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NCAA Tournament Thoughts 3/25/17: West Coast Basketball Rules the Night

Let me start with this:  Gonzaga has finally proven all their doubters wrong.  In an impressive display of team defense, the Zags were able to grab a big lead early and rarely looked back today.    The only time they were threatened was when Xavier hit a three-quarter court heave at the end of the first half…a shot that was just after the buzzer.    It didn’t matter, as Xavier…

March 25, 2017
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Indiana Makes Smart Move In Hiring Archie Miller

The lists of potential names to replace Tom Crean at Indiana was impressive – from NBA coaches Brad Stevens and Billy Donovan down to college mainstays like Chris Mack (Xavier), Steve Alford (UCLA – former Indiana player), and Gregg Marshall (the Wichita State coach who, to date, has simply refused to budge from his post of the mid-major giant). In the end, I think they made the right choice in…

March 25, 2017
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NCAA Tournament: Elite Eight Thoughts

Bracket A:   51 Final Fours, 17 national championships Bracket B:  5 Final Fours, 2 championships (All by Florida) The illustration above is what makes this tournament the best event in the world of sports.    You just never know where you are going to end up once the whole spectacle begins. Obviously, the above illustration is an outline of the Midwest-South vs. the East-West brackets.  The Midwest-South is loaded….

March 25, 2017
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NCAA Tournament Thoughts 3/24/17

1.  Carolina Reigns Supreme Friday Night The early games certainly didn’t capture much drama tonight.  While Butler and Baylor each had a small run in them (because every team has at least a small run in them!), neither game was in doubt in the early session Friday night.   This was quite a different set of outcomes than we got last night, when both early games (and one of the…

March 24, 2017
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NCAA Tournament Thoughts 3/23/17: The End of the Road for Arizona

1.  Michigan and Oregon Play a Thriller As a Michigan fan, I am used to nail-biting NCAA Tournament games.  John Beilein’s teams really blow anybody out.  They really on being more fundamentally sound down the stretch in close games.  Tonight, those fundamentals failed them.  The biggest play of the game was when they couldn’t grab a defensive rebound on a missed free throw late in the game, when they were…

March 23, 2017
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Georgetown Axes John Thompson III

Many names come to mind when you think of the Georgetown basketball program, but given how college basketball works, no group of players becomes more synonymous with a school than the head coach.       In the case of the Hoyas, the name Thompson has essentially be associated with the program going all the way back to 1972, when John Thompson, Jr. first took the reigns as head coach….

March 23, 2017
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