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2013-14 Big East Post-Mortem

by - Published May 6, 2014 in Columns, Conference Notes
bigeast

A new era in the Big East began in 2013-14, and it was not hard to tell this was not your father’s Big East. The name was there, some familiar teams were as well, and the conference tournament was once again at Madison Square Garden. For that matter, the campaigning by coaches on behalf of the conference was the same.

But no matter how much it might look like the Big East we all knew, this was different.

For starters, three new teams joined the seven that split from the old Big East. Butler, Creighton and Xavier all left other conferences, and Creighton was a contender right away with a veteran team led by Doug McDermott. Xavier had its ups and downs but managed to reach the NCAA Tournament, while Butler had a depleted roster for new head coach Brandon Miller, in part from an injury to key guard Roosevelt Jones that cost him the season, and struggled.

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2013-14 Ivy League Post-Mortem

by - Published May 5, 2014 in Columns, Conference Notes
ivy

As good as the 2013-14 season was in the Ivy League, it might be just the beginning of a great stretch for the league. The results were great, and there is a lot to be optimistic about going forward.

Harvard won the league as expected, then beat Cincinnati in the NCAA Tournament. For the first time since Princeton in 1983-84, an Ivy League team has won an NCAA Tournament game in consecutive years. The Crimson were basically prohibitive favorites, and while Yale was able to hang around late, the Crimson were never behind in the standings.

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adidas Gauntlet Dallas – Final thoughts and notes

by - Published May 2, 2014 in Columns, Recruiting
adidasdallas

DUNCANVILLE, Texas – It’s now been a few days since the adidas Gauntlet Dallas wrapped up. That makes it a good time to look back on the event one last time with some final notes on players that either flew under the radar or thoughts on some teams and the college coaches who turned out.

For a look back on some of the players from each day, you can look here, here and here.

Now, some final thoughts from the weekend, including a few players not previously mentioned.

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adidas Gauntlet Dallas – Sunday notes

by - Published April 28, 2014 in Columns, Recruiting
author_kasiecki

DUNCANVILLE, Texas – The adidas Gauntlet Dallas wrapped up on Sunday. With that, two more events in the Gauntlet series remain leading into the adidas Super 64 in July. This turned out to be a fine day for underclassmen, as they stood out more as a whole than their older counterparts.

Playoff rounds and championship games were played in the 16-under and 15-under age groups as well. In the 16-under final, Virginia-based Team Loaded got off to a fast start and never looked back en route to a 72-46 win over Las Vegas-based Dream Vision. Compton Magic won the 15-under with a 70-54 win over Indiana Elite.

Now, a look at some notable players on Sunday, starting once more with the upperclassmen. Coming up later will be some final thoughts and notes on the event.

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adidas Gauntlet Dallas – Saturday notes

by - Published April 27, 2014 in Columns, Recruiting
hoopguy-cyan

DUNCANVILLE, Texas – Saturday was a long day of basketball at the adidas Gauntlet Dallas. That meant plenty of time to see a lot of talent from all over. There were some great games and some blowouts, and players stood out for different reasons as is often the case.

The college coach turnout continued to be excellent, with a number of high-profile head coaches among those in attendance over the course of the day. There’s one more day to go, and before we get to that we’ll look back at some notable players from Saturday, starting once again with the upperclassmen.
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adidas Gauntlet Dallas – Friday notes

by - Published April 26, 2014 in Columns, Recruiting
author_kasiecki

DUNCANVILLE, Texas – Opening night in the first event in the adidas Gauntlet series saw a light slate of games, but neither the talent nor the college coach turnout was similarly light. There was plenty of good talent and a number of head coaches among those who came to check out the talent on hand.

Saturday will be a full day of action starting bright and early in the morning. Before that comes, here’s a look at a few players who stood out on the evening, starting with players in the class of 2015.

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McDaniels’ early departure a tough blow for Clemson

by - Published April 24, 2014 in Columns
clemson

If you’re a Clemson fan, the big news on Tuesday hurts. It’s news you didn’t want to hear.

You can hardly blame K.J. McDaniels for his decision to enter the NBA Draft, as his stock might never be higher. The junior forward certainly looked poised to have a big senior year, but in reality it would be tough to sustain the level of play he showed in the NIT as Clemson reached the quarterfinals before bowing out to SMU. He’s now projected to go somewhere in the back half of the first round, or even sneak into the lottery, and it’s not something that could have been foreseen a few months ago.

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Plenty of talent at the Northeast Hoops Festival

by - Published April 15, 2014 in Columns, Recruiting
author_kasiecki

HANOVER, Mass. – The Northeast Hoops Festival is one of the big early spring events in the region, and this year it was better than ever. You name the elite program in New England, and they were in this. In addition, they had a number of good teams from outside the region to make it a packed field, and it was held at a fine new facility, the University Sports Complex in Hanover.

Sunday’s games included playoff rounds and saw some games that came right down to the end. Included in that was the Varsity American championship game, which featured New York-based House of Sport and Maine-based MB Nation. MB Nation controlled the game for most of the first half and a lot of the second, but House of Sport gradually rallied. They got within one in the final minute, when MB Nation took an ill-advised shot in traffic and lost possession. After a free throw tied it at 48, MB Nation threw the ball away, and House of Sport got a buzzer-beater to win 50-48.

Here is a look at some of the players we saw.

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Watson’s transfer will sting BU the most

by - Published April 11, 2014 in Columns, Your Phil of Hoops
bostonuniversity

While there have surely been worse days in the program’s history, last Wednesday will not go down among the best ones for Boston University. Three players, including star guard Maurice Watson Jr., will all transfer. All of a sudden, the Terriers will have a drastically different look next year and don’t project to be nearly as good. One of them is a bigger loss than the others.

The school announced the transfers of James Kennedy, Malik Thomas and Watson last week. Kennedy, who is one of the nicest young men you could ever meet, has rarely played in his career, having battled injuries. Thomas has had his moments, and his departure will hurt, but it’s Watson’s departure that is both a little mind-boggling and will really hurt.

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Shabazz Napier grew into a championship leader

by - Published April 8, 2014 in Columns
connecticut

Shabazz Napier wasn’t always the easiest kid to root for. He was rough around the edges and could let his competitive streak get the best of him on occasion. Early on, he was an underachiever in the classroom. It would be easy to watch him and see him as a selfish player at times. You could be excused if you wondered if he wasn’t going to be one more example of a city legend somewhere who flamed out when it came to college.

If you knew him back in those days, you knew none of that was who he really is. And if you have followed him over the years, you know that none of that has been true for quite a while now. He wakes up on Tuesday morning with an incredible college legacy that includes two national championships, and one that is the product of tremendous growth into the player and person he always had the potential to become. That he is a two-time champion does not change him from what he was into something else; rather, it is his evolution into the person he is that changed him into a champion.

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Your Phil of Hoops

Saturday Notes – January 24, 2015

January 25, 2015 by

author_kasiecki

This Saturday didn’t have quite the marquee matchups as a week earlier, but there were some important ones, especially with teams in the middle of a few conferences trying to separate themselves from the pack.

Saturday notes – January 17, 2015

January 18, 2015 by

author_kasiecki

High school games may have grabbed a lot of attention, but there were plenty of college games as well. Most results weren’t surprising, but were well worth looking at some notes on, and we do that here.

Rhode Island keeping perspective after tough loss

January 15, 2015 by

rhodeisland

Rhode Island controlled Tuesday night’s game against VCU, but couldn’t finish it and took a tough loss. Their improvement is evident, though, and they are keeping perspective on that in trying to keep improving.

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2015 Boston Winter Invitational: What to expect

January 23, 2015 by

hoopguy-divisionII

The Boston Winter Invitational is coming up on Sunday at UMass-Boston. Here is a look at some of what to expect in the four prep school games that are on the schedule.

2015 Spalding Hoophall Classic – Monday notes

January 21, 2015 by

hoophall

Monday was the big day despite having just five games, as all were big matchups and most were nationally televised. There was plenty of talent in these games, and some big names played well.

2015 Spalding Hoophall Classic – Sunday notes

January 19, 2015 by

hoophall

It was a bad weather day outside, but fortunately we play the games indoors. Prep schools took center stage on a busy Sunday with some good talent and good games all the way to the end.

2015 Spalding Hoophall Classic – Saturday notes

January 18, 2015 by

hoophall

The Spalding Hoophall Classic picked up on Saturday, with a few good games, a couple of blowouts, then the best game of the day at the end. There was also plenty of good talent in each game.

2015 Hoop Dreams Mag Prep Classic – Sunday notes

January 14, 2015 by

author_kasiecki

Sunday was the day for a trip a little down the road from Saturday’s destination to check out some prep school action. We take a look at some notes from the day’s games in the Hoop Dreams Mag Prep Classic.

2014 Prep School Tour

Missed a recap of an open gym workout? We have them all right here for you.

Sept. 9: Putnam Science Academy
Sept 10: Commonwealth Academy
Sept. 11: St. Andrew's
Sept. 12: Northfield Mount Hermon
Sept. 16: Brewster Academy and Phillips Exeter
Sept. 17: Brooks School
Sept. 21: Holderness School
Sept. 23: St. Thomas More and Marianapolis Prep
Sept. 24: South Kent School and Kent School
Sept. 25: Williston Northampton
Sept. 28: Wilbraham and Monson Academy and Suffield Academy
Sept. 30: New Hampton
Oct. 5: Worcester Academy
Oct. 7: Brimmer and May
Oct. 8: Cushing Academy
Oct. 9: Tilton
Oct. 12: Tabor Academy and Rivers School
Oct. 14: The Master's School
Oct. 16: Vermont Academy

You can also find them all right here.