Is the NCAA Starting to “Get It” on Recruiting?

by - Published August 28, 2011 in Columns

Could the NCAA be ready to turn over a new leaf? A recent news release about discussions among the Division I Leadership Council suggests it might be possible. As refreshing as that would be, however, we shouldn’t get ahead of ourselves. Let’s remember that this is the NCAA that we’re talking about.


The NCAA has long wanted to regulate the world of grassroots basketball, and they have attained some measure of that in recent years. None of it has been good, though, and that’s true by just about any measure. They first took away the ability of Division I coaches to attend fall travel team events, then reduced the spring to only events sanctioned by state high school associations during the month of April. A couple of years ago, that went away, leaving coaches with just the month of July for seeing a large number of players in one setting. It wasn’t good for many coaches, and they weren’t alone.

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The Call to Pay College Football and Basketball Players a Good Excuse to Abolish Title IX

by - Published August 26, 2011 in Columns

Special to Hoopville


Preliminarily, you need to know who you are reading. I was once upon a time a college basketball assistant, most recently spending a year on Dan Dakich’s staff at Bowling Green. Later, I spent four years as a radio analyst (and Hoopville writer) in Boston, the last two for Northeastern’s Bill Coen. Most of the rest as a litigator, most of those years representing insurance interests. I developed the view that most civil lawsuits are frivolous, that we have too many lawyers in America (by a factor of 10), and that nothing I can think of is more disgusting than middle class Americans with a lawyer’s phone number on speed-dial (don’t much like the concept of speed-dial, but really hate individuals’ rights of recent-vintage to sue). The reader should know I have worked Title IX lawsuits (in fact, on the plaintiffs’ side), so I know from whence I speak.

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Paying Players Not Likely to Happen or Solve Problems

by - Published August 26, 2011 in Columns

The subject of paying players in addition to the scholarships they receive is certainly not a new one. Questions have been asked about it for quite a while, with many feeling like players should be paid and for a litany of reasons from television contracts to coaches’ contracts to sales of player jerseys. And while the discussion seems poised to go to another level now that the NCAA is exploring the subject, two things remain true: pay for play will be very difficult to make reality, and if it ever becomes reality it’s not likely to solve the problem of NCAA violations that proponents think it will.

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2011 Boston Best 40 Another Success

by - Published August 24, 2011 in Columns

WESTON, Mass. – The Rivers School was once again home to the Boston Best 40 on Saturday. The event brought together some top talent in the area in grades 6-9, with sixth and seventh graders starting the day and eighth and ninth graders following that. The event was run by Rivers coach Andrew Mirken with some assistance from ESkillz Academy.


The young players went through a series of drills before playing in games against one another. The eighth and ninth graders were also shown a more extensive set of drills that they can use to help improve their skill level.

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Powerade Hardtop Challenge Another Success in Boston

by - Published August 17, 2011 in Columns

ROXBURY, Mass. – The Powerade Hardtop Challenge, formerly known as the “Sprite Tournament”, was held at the Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center this weekend. It’s part of an annual national tour run by Powerade with the help of people in the basketball community in each city.


The event featured competition in four boys and two girls age groups. While there were some teams that made the trip from out of town, including a couple from Pennsylvania and several from New York, the event had a decidedly Boston feel, especially when it came to the championships. This year, a handful of games were played on Friday night of the weekend, after having games only on Saturday and Sunday in the past. In part, that was to accommodate having two girls age groups that were added this year.

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Looking Back on Over 100 Games in 2010-11

by - Published August 8, 2011 in Columns

It’s always a challenge to see so many games from a lot of standpoints. There are schedules, which make it difficult to see some teams at all, and there are logistics. This winter was not a fun one in much of New England with seemingly constant snow, and it made getting to some games difficult as one might imagine. In some ways, that made covering over 100 games for the third year in a row a little nicer this time around.


With that in mind, and with the 2011-12 season just another couple of months away, here is a look back at over 100 Division I games in the 2010-11 season.

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Your Phil of Hoops

Big East looks the same in some ways and quite different in other ways

November 13, 2015 by


As year three of the new-look Big East tips off, the conference looks the same in a few ways. In other ways, though, it’s not the same, and much is to be determined.

Though a contender, Purdue will need to earn more relevance

October 15, 2015 by


Purdue has the makings of a contender in Big Ten play, but you wouldn’t know it from the conversations about the conference teams. The Boilermakers will have to earn their way to relevance despite their potential to contend.

New challenge ahead for Harvard

October 6, 2015 by


If Harvard’s great run through the Ivy League is to continue in 2015-16, the Crimson will have to get through quite a challenge this time around with a team that looks a little different.

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Coaching Changes and NBA Draft Early Entrants

The coaching carousel is moving. Keep track of the latest coaching changes right here on Hoopville.

Also, keep track of players who have declared early for the NBA Draft.

College Basketball Tonight

We hope you enjoyed listening to COLLEGE BASKETBALL TONIGHT, a comprehensive look at the NCAA Tournament hosted by veteran college basketball broadcaster Ted Sarandis, joined by former St. John's and George Washington head coach Mike Jarvis, former Fairfield head coach Terry O'Connor and many great guests, including Hoopville's own Phil Kasiecki.

Here are links to the shows:

March 15, 2015 - First hour | Second hour

March 22, 2015 - First hour | Second hour

March 29, 2015 - First hour | Second hour

April 5, 2015 - First hour | Second hour | Third hour

Recruiting Coverage

2015 Boston Back to School Showcase recap

September 18, 2015 by


The Boston Back to School Showcase gave high school teams from three states and north of the border a chance for a couple of early games. We take a look back at the day and a few who stood out.

2015 Hoopville Spring Finale Notes

June 30, 2015 by


We look back at more from the 2015 Hoopville Spring Finale, where some of the championship games were worth the price of admission.

A big championship day for a local program at the Hoopville Spring Finale

June 23, 2015 by


The 2015 Hoopville Spring Finale saw a number of good championship games on Sunday to close it out, and we start our look back with a look at those games.

Player highlights from Mass Elite and Boston Warriors college showcase

June 4, 2015 by


Two big programs, Mass Elite and the Boston Warriors, got together once again on a college showcase for many of their high school players. We look at some who stood out on the evening.

2015 Massachusetts AAU Tournament notes

June 3, 2015 by


Massachusetts held its AAU championship rounds in a few age groups and its entire tournament for the oldest age group this weekend. We take a look at some of Sunday’s action in Foxboro.