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For Georges Niang, a path to the NBA may not include the draft

by - Published May 16, 2016 in Columns

In a season full of senior stars, Georges Niang is one who might have seemed an unlikely one once upon a time. His is a story of how intangibles supplement talent and physical gifts and bring someone a long way.

As a high schooler, Niang won – a lot. He played for the powerful BABC program, long the premier travel program in New England, and they rarely lost games while winning a Nike EYBL title and an AAU national championship during his time. It didn’t stop there, as his teams at the Tilton School won four straight NEPSAC Class AA titles and nearly won a fifth, and also won a National Prep Championship. He was no small part of all of those teams, scoring over 2,300 points at Tilton and being a constant presence for BABC, though more of a glue guy on the latter for a good deal of his career.

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2015-16 America East Post-Mortem

by - Published May 13, 2016 in Columns, Conference Notes

If you looked at how the America East standings have been the past few years, then looked at the final standings this time around, there was a familiar look. Consistency can be a good thing in many contexts, but as it applies to America East, it is not in one respect: right now, the conference appears to be stuck in neutral from a competitive standpoint.

Over the past six seasons, the conference has been dominated by Stony Brook, Albany and Vermont. Boston University was annually a contender, too, before departing for the Patriot League, but the overall pattern doesn’t change. In particular, the past two seasons have seen the same four teams finish in the top four, and then a big drop-off as four games separated fourth from fifth place each season. The bottom of the conference is having a tough time moving up, with most of the programs in some form of transition.

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Talking Hoops with Ted Sarandis – May 5, 2016

by - Published May 6, 2016 in Columns

Welcome to Talking Hoops with Ted Sarandis. In this edition, we start by looking back at a departed legend, then continue with some off-season developments.

First, we look back at the life of the late Pearl Washington, a college basketball legend. While he had a relatively uneven NBA career, there is no mistaking that he will be remembered for his college days at Syracuse both on its own merits and within the larger context of the Big East and its rise.

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One last appreciation for college basketball’s senior class

by - Published April 25, 2016 in Columns

The 2015-16 college basketball season is in the books. There were many memorable moments, including right at the end, and things that help this season stand out from others. Perhaps the biggest one of all is something that was driven home often this season: seniors mean a great deal to college teams.

For years now, so much energy has been spent on the freshmen in college basketball, especially if there was a ballyhooed recruiting class. Since the NBA’s age minimum rule came into effect, much has been said of how the college game gets great talents for a year, talent it wasn’t getting for about a decade before the rule came. “One and done” has become part of the lexicon of college basketball because of players who come to college for a year and then turn pro.

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Talking Hoops with Ted Sarandis – April 20, 2016

by - Published April 20, 2016 in Columns

Welcome to Talking Hoops with Ted Sarandis. As the off-season continues, the NBA Draft and coaching changes continue to take center stage, albeit with a twist in recent days.

We start with Ted talking about his trip to the Portsmouth Invitational Tournament, a long-running event for college seniors as a precursor to the NBA Draft. In recent years, many have turned down invitations for one reason or another, often feeling that they would do better just working out for teams, but with seniors being a big part of the college basketball season this year, this edition of the PIT hauled in a very good group that could see a half dozen players get drafted.

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Talking Hoops with Ted Sarandis – April 14, 2016

by - Published April 14, 2016 in Columns

Welcome to Talking Hoops with Ted Sarandis. The off-season is well underway, but as usual, there is plenty to talk about in college basketball.

We start by looking back once more at the thriller of a championship game, and a few facets of it. We continue with how Villanova won despite not having the kind of talent most national champions have had and what it could mean going forward, as well as what it tells us about the job Jay Wright has done by prioritizing fit over talent level.

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A game-changing national championship

by - Published April 5, 2016 in Columns

When Kris Jenkins hit a buzzer-beating three-pointer in the national championship game, it made Villanova the champions of college basketball. It gave the school their second national title, with the first one coming 31 years earlier. It was the end of an epic game, one that you don’t feel calling an “instant classic” does full justice to.

And it did much more than anyone might appreciate at the moment it happened. It is potentially a game-changer, and this isn’t about the perception of head coach Jay Wright, much as that will change.

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Talking Hoops with Ted Sarandis – April 5, 2016

by - Published April 5, 2016 in Columns

Welcome to Talking Hoops with Ted Sarandis. We had a thriller of a national championship game, and talked about it minutes after it ended.

We look back at the thriller of a championship game, and a few facets of it. Villanova wins their second national championship with a buzzer-beater seconds after North Carolina had tied it with a miracle shot of their own. Before that, the Wildcats built a 10-point lead at one point, sparked in part by a key finish to the first half. Villanova ended the first half with a big play on several occasions during the past month, but perhaps none bigger than this.

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The Morning Dish – Monday, April 4, 2016

by - Published April 4, 2016 in The Morning Dish

Back in the fall, 351 teams lined up with hopes of playing on Monday night. Well over 5,000 games and many more practices later, the end is near. Two teams remain, and their play over the past three weekends makes them deserving participants.

North Carolina and Villanova are not surprises getting this far. The Tar Heels were the preseason No. 1 of a lot of people, while most had Villanova as a top 10 team. The Wildcats’ appearance might be a mild surprise, but that they have reached this point should shock no one, not even those who could only talk about how the Wildcats had not gotten past the first weekend for several years.

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The Morning Dish – Saturday, April 2, 2016

by - Published April 2, 2016 in The Morning Dish

With four postseason tournaments besides the one most pay attention to, it can be easy to get lost in the mix. The NIT doesn’t really have that problem since it has a rich history that continues today, but amidst the NCAA Tournament, the early entrants to the NBA Draft and the coaching carousel, it can be easy to not notice the College Basketball Invitational (CBI), CollegeInsider.com Tournament (CIT) and Vegas 16. But each retains something unique to it all the same.

The CBI was the first of those tournaments to come up, and where it especially stands out is what happens to determine the championship. It uses a best-of-three format, with the first game at one school’s home court and the second game at the other school’s home court. If the teams each win a game, a third game is held at the same site as the second game. The ninth iteration of the event completed on Friday, and only twice has the championship series not gone to a third game.

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Your Phil of Hoops

For the Big 12, coming out on top again will be a challenge in 2016-17

October 21, 2016 by


The Big 12 has been on a great run to be the top conference in recent years, including last year. This year will be a challenge due to a big loss of experience throughout the conference.

A year later, Cal has a different team and something to prove

October 7, 2016 by


With some big-time additions, much was expected of Cal a year ago, and the season did not end well. This time around, expectations may be reduced, but the Golden Bears have a chance to end the season better.

Gbinije’s long journey may still have the ending many expected at one time

May 31, 2016 by


Michael Gbinije seemingly fulfilled the potential many thought he had, though he traveled a circuitous route to get there. Will it end up in the NBA Draft, or will he have to fight harder to make a roster?

Hoopville Archives

Everybody Needs a Head Coach

Former college basketball coach Mike Jarvis has a new book out, Everybody Needs a Head Coach.

"As you read this book, I hope that Coach Jarvis' experiences inspire you to find your purpose in life."
-Patrick Ewing, NBA Hall of Fame center

"Mike Jarvis' is one of my special friends. I am so pleased that he has taken the time to write this fabulous book."
-Mike Krzyzewski, Five-time NCAA championship head coach, Duke Blue Devils

"In reading this book, I can see that Mike hasn't lost his edge or his purpose. Readers should take a look at what he has to say."
-Jim Calhoun, Three-time NCAA champion, UConn Men's basketball

Review on Hoopville coming soon!

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 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.

Here are links to the shows:

March 13, 2016 - First hour | Second hour

March 20, 2016 - First hour | Second hour

March 27, 2016 - First hour | Second hour

April 3, 2016 - First hour | Second hour

Phil Kasiecki on Twitter

Recruiting Coverage

2016 Boston Back to School Showcase notes

September 12, 2016 by


We look back at the 2016 Boston Back to School Showcase, where a couple of Boston City League teams were among the most impressive on the day.

2016 Hoopville Spring Finale championship recap

June 28, 2016 by


We look back at the championship games of the 2016 Hoopville Spring Finale, which had a big local flavor as one might have expected.

2016 Hoopville Spring Finale preview

June 24, 2016 by


We look ahead to the 2016 Hoopville Spring Finale, held at a familiar location in Boston.

At the 2016 Boston Shootout, host BABC has a big day

June 8, 2016 by


Sunday was a big day for the host program at the 44th Boston Shootout

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.