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The Morning Dish – Saturday, December 19, 2015

by - Published December 19, 2015 in The Morning Dish
hoopguy-orange

Frank Martin has done some very good things as a college basketball coach. The latest of those is making South Carolina relevant once again and on the verge of NCAA Tournament contention, something that continues as non-conference play is winding down.

The Gamecocks completed another 2-0 week with a 65-69 win over Clemson in Greenville on Friday night, improving to 10-0, their best start since 1933-34. They are the only undefeated team in the SEC at this point, and although all non-conference schedules are not created equal, this is the latest sign of progress under Martin. That’s also not to cast their record in the wrong light, because it’s not like they have only beat up on teams with RPIs north of 300.

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The Morning Dish – Monday, December 14, 2015

by - Published December 14, 2015 in The Morning Dish
hoopguy-yellow

The Big East just keeps on rolling. And while it’s a very different Big East than the one Chris Mullin knew as a player – not to mention a very different Big East than the one Syracuse was a part of just a few short years ago – one thing remains the case: the conference’s teams win a lot.

That’s not to say it’s come easily, because winning never does. It’s been far from a birthright. But like last year, Big East teams are winning at a clip few probably imagined, and Sunday continued that as they went 3-0 on the day, with another signature win among them.

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Saturday Notes – December 12, 2015

by - Published December 13, 2015 in Columns, Your Phil of Hoops
author_kasiecki

College basketball is starting to take center stage on Saturdays, as this one was full of TV games, and many of them good ones. A few teams scored important wins, but most of all, the games generally lived up to their billing. This is something college basketball needs at a time when college football is otherwise fading from the spotlight for a bit with the time in between the end of the regular season and bowl games.

Here are notes from a number of those games on the day, including some rivalry games.

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The Morning Dish – Friday, December 11, 2015

by - Published December 11, 2015 in The Morning Dish
hoopguy-yellow

As rivalries go, Iowa-Iowa State doesn’t get a great deal of pub compared to many others. We all know Duke-North Carolina, Kentucky-Louisville, Georgetown-Syracuse, Oklahoma-Oklahoma State (Bedlam), and more. But Iowa-Iowa State has become quite a rivalry all its own; two years ago in the same building, they played a thriller that the Cyclones won. Thursday night provided the latest chapter in Hilton Coliseum.

It not only provided quite a story line with the game’s result, but also with what happened to someone who is not a part of either program.

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The Morning Dish – Monday, December 7, 2015

by - Published December 7, 2015 in The Morning Dish
hoopguy-orange

It was quite a week for North Carolina. The Tar Heels really appear to be locked in right now, and after two big wins, why not? First, the Tar Heels took out Maryland in impressive fashion on Tuesday night in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge, taking control early on and holding them off later. Then on Sunday, they handed Davidson their first loss of the season with a 98-65 thumping of the Wildcats.

So much of it has to do with someone who has only played in the past two games, one whose prior level of play has been easy to forget. North Carolina is undoubtedly ecstatic to have Marcus Paige back.

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Saturday Notes – December 5, 2015

by - Published December 6, 2015 in Columns, Your Phil of Hoops
author_kasiecki

College football took center stage on Saturday with championship games, but college basketball gave us plenty as well. We had great rivalry games, many intriguing matchups, and some other results of note from a busy day full of games. It was a good taste of what Saturdays will be like most of the time from here until March.

With that in mind, here are some quick thoughts on some of the day’s games.

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Providence-Rhode Island game will be even more memorable later

by - Published December 6, 2015 in Columns
author_kasiecki

SOUTH KINGSTON, R.I. – While it’s always been one to watch if you’re a New Englander, the annual meeting between Providence and Rhode Island is one that has ebbed and flowed a bit. For a few years when the Rams struggled over a decade ago, it wasn’t as big a game. But as both teams have been better of late, especially this season, the game has been bigger and better. And with apologies to Providence head coach Ed Cooley, it’s a rivalry game, one that on Saturday night delivered everything you could want unless you were a Rhode Island fan.

And it’s a game that will be a little more memorable when we see these teams later in the season.

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The Morning Dish – Saturday, December 5, 2015

by - Published December 5, 2015 in The Morning Dish
hoopguy-yellow

Talent alone won’t always win you basketball games. Team chemistry is huge, and it goes much deeper than the notion many have of whether or not players like each other. When team chemistry is volatile, underachieving is almost inevitable. Then the only solution is often a housecleaning.

Enter the 2015-16 Kansas State Wildcats, who are now 6-1 after eking out a 68-66 win at Georgia on Friday night and have as many true road wins this season as they had all of last season.

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UCLA shows it has a high ceiling

by - Published December 5, 2015 in Columns, Your Phil of Hoops
ucla

It’s easy to look at UCLA’s win over Kentucky as a big win that will boost the team. When you factor in the slow start the Bruins have, that’s an even more tempting angle to take. There’s no question this win can be just that. The biggest determinant of that, however, will be what UCLA does from here, because success will make this win worth something. What is clear, however, is that this win shows that UCLA has quite a high ceiling.

The jury has been out on the Bruins even before they opened the season with an 84-81 overtime loss to Monmouth. While we have found out since then that Monmouth is perhaps a little better than many thought, it was still a home game. They went 1-2 in Maui, and while there’s no shame in losing to Kansas, they lost to Wake Forest and barely knocked off UNLV. So we don’t know just how good this team is or can be, even allowing for teams to be finding themselves a bit early in the season.

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The Morning Dish – Monday, November 30, 2015

by - Published November 30, 2015 in The Morning Dish
hoopguy-cyan

Last year, Tom Izzo’s team made a surprise run in the month of March. It was the most unlikely of Final Fours for a coach who has been to a few in his time – in fact, until a year earlier, every four-year player for him made it to at least one Final Four, a remarkable fact. If Michigan State is one of the last four teams this season, there’s no reason to be surprised. The Spartans just closed out a great month of November.

Michigan State beat Providence 77-64 to take home the Wooden Legacy Classic title, pulling away late in what was a tight game throughout. A team that has been led by Denzel Valentine got a nice game from Bryn Forbes and Devonta Davis to support the star senior, who was good but not as stellar as he’s been – and that’s okay. Valentine might win Player of the Year if the award were given out right now, but that doesn’t mean he’ll be other-worldly every night out – just most of them.

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Your Phil of Hoops

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Saturday Notes – February 27, 2016

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

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College Basketball Tonight

We hope you enjoyed COLLEGE BASKETBALL TONIGHT during the 2016 NCAA Tournament. COLLEGE BASKETBALL TONIGHT is a comprehensive look at the NCAA Tournament hosted by veteran college basketball broadcaster Ted Sarandis, along with co-hosts Mike Jarvis and Terry O'Connor, both former Division I coaches. It also included many great guests, including Hoopville's own Phil Kasiecki.

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March 13, 2016 - First hour | Second hour

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hoopguy-divisionII

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hoopguy-yellow

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