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

by - Published June 8, 2016 in Columns, Recruiting

BOSTON – While it isn’t the event of yesteryear with the plethora of big-time talent and all the memorable moments, the Boston Shootout continues on thanks to the Boston Amateur Basketball Club, the premier travel program in New England. After 1999, BABC took it over and started running it without seniors who would soon be in college, and it’s a solid event now for the region.

In the 44th iteration this year, the host program went 3-for-3, winning all age groups at Cathedral High School. The event featured teams from Maine, New Hampshire and New York in addition to Massachusetts. The freshmen team beat the Albany City Rocks, then the sophomores beat the New England Playaz before the juniors held off the DC Blue Devils in the final game of the weekend.

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After a tough end, North Carolina stars look towards the NBA Draft

by - Published June 8, 2016 in Columns

Villanova’s national championship win will long be remembered for the finish. It’s also true that one reason it will long be remembered is that the Wildcats were not exactly loaded with can’t-miss NBA prospects – indeed, when the book is written on that team in a couple of years in that context, they may go down as the first team in about 30 years to win without a future first round draft pick on the roster. What is less remembered, though, is that they beat a team led by seniors, one of whom was nearly a hero but instead is mainly a footnote in that game.

There are reasons why it’s forgotten that North Carolina was led by seniors Marcus Paige and Brice Johnson. Mainly, it’s the fact that the Tar Heels came up on the short end. Partly, it’s that Paige missed time with an injury during the season. Perhaps a bigger contributor than that is the fact that a pair of Tar Heels declared for the NBA Draft as early entrants after the season, but both returned to school.

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2015-16 CAA Post-Mortem

by - Published June 7, 2016 in Columns, Conference Notes

The final season of the CAA under its first commissioner had a lot to remember. And when the season ended, the changes were only just about to begin, and they didn’t end with the retiring leader.

The conference had some good talent returning, and there was every reason to expect it to be as competitive as ever. That certainly panned out, although a three-game difference between the teams who tied for first and the three teams right behind them might not indicate it. Road teams had a particularly good year, winning exactly half the time in conference play, and no team ran the table at home. Seven of the ten teams had a winning road record in conference play, and only one of those teams didn’t have a winning overall road record (William & Mary finished 7-7, which is still .500).

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Wichita State stars hope to repeat their act at the next level

by - Published June 3, 2016 in Columns

When the history book is written on Wichita State basketball, Fred VanVleet and Ron Baker will occupy a prominent place. They are the biggest reasons the Shockers have just had an amazing four-year stretch that began with a Final Four appearance, featured an undefeated regular season and ended with an impressive NCAA Tournament win before they bowed out in the next round.

Now, it’s on to the next act. And that next act has nothing certain about it – certainly nothing as certain as the place they will occupy in their alma mater’s basketball history book.

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2015-16 Ivy League Post-Mortem

by - Published June 3, 2016 in Columns, Conference Notes

Sometimes, the basketball gods get one right. In 2016, they got one right with Yale.

In 2015-16, the Ivy League didn’t quite continue to steady climb it had been on in recent years. It was in a nice up cycle, but this time around, it didn’t have the same feeling not only among the contenders, but also in the middle of the pack. Part of that is because Harvard, who has ruled the league in recent years, dropped off significantly first from graduation losses and then further a key injury. The Crimson still competed, but this was a very different team.

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2015-16 Big East Post-Mortem

by - Published June 2, 2016 in Columns, Conference Notes

For three seasons now, the Big East has had its share of critics. First, that it’s not as good as the American Athletic Conference, the new conference formed from the split of the old Big East – a cry that grew louder when UConn won the national championship in the first year after the split. Next was that they overachieved, and they had a bunch of good schools but no national power. Then there were troubles in the NCAA Tournament, the ultimate measuring stick.

And in 2015-16, they were all obliterated. The conference had great validation come its way, none more so than on the last night of the season.

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

by - Published May 31, 2016 in Columns, Your Phil of Hoops

Michael Gbinije seemingly had “college All-American” and probably more written all over him growing up. He played at a powerhouse in DeMatha Catholic in Maryland, and as often happens with good players there, was highly recruited. When he chose Duke, many probably figured he had a lot ahead of him.

Well, he did, but the road was far from easy. His college career was quite a journey that took him elsewhere, but could still take him to the promised land beyond college. For that matter, he experienced the promised land of the Final Four in his final season, though it’s one as unexpected as how he got to this point.

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2015-16 Pac-12 Post-Mortem

by - Published May 31, 2016 in Columns, Conference Notes

The Pac-12 had quite a season in 2015-16, during which the conference celebrated 100 years of existence. It provided tremendous basketball, even if a fair amount of the country didn’t get to see much of it because of the time difference. And it happened with what appears to be a changing landscape all the way around.

For starters, the Pac-12 was a major presence in the RPI. Only the Big 12 was better in terms of conference RPI, but the Pac-12 placed six teams in the RPI top 50 and 10 in the top 100. Since the NCAA adjusted the formula to account for game location in 2004-05, only 12 conferences have produced a better RPI than the Pac-12 did this season.

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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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Your Phil of Hoops

Saturday Notes – December 3, 2016

December 4, 2016 by

The first big Saturday of the college basketball season gave us all we could hope for, and it started right away. We have notes from a number of the day’s games right here.

Thanks to a big backcourt boost, Gonzaga should be even better this season

November 7, 2016 by

Gonzaga might have needed the West Coast Conference title they won in Las Vegas last year in order to be in the NCAA Tournament. With better guards, there should be no doubt about that this time around.

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.

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.

The show aired on AM 710 WOR in New York City on Sunday evenings starting with Selection Sunday and running through the NCAA Tournament.

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.