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2013 Hall of Fame National Invitational evaluations

by - Published July 23, 2013 in Columns

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – A trip to the western part of Massachusetts was in order for the Hall of Fame National Invitational.  Traditionally held at the MassMutual Center downtown, this time around it was held primarily at Western New England University and Springfield College, both just a short drive from one another.

Friday night and some of Saturday included some showcase games between some of the event’s top teams, many of whom had a bye in the bracket play and thus would otherwise play their first games much later than everyone else.  By Saturday afternoon, bracket play had begun in earnest.

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The Showdown does well in following Reebok’s Breakout Camp

by - Published July 18, 2013 in Columns

PHILADELPHIA – Right after the Reebok Breakout Camp was over, The Showdown got going with most of the camp’s players joining their travel team.  Run by Elevate Hoops, the two-day tournament consisted of three age groups from rising seniors down to rising sophomores, with the oldest group naturally being the one of most interest to the college coaches and media in attendance.

The first championship game was a battle of local teams in the 15-Under division.  Philly Triple Threat took the lead in the first half and held it by five at the break, but they never really broke it open.  Philly Pride finally broke through around the halfway point of the second half and later grew the lead en route to a 60-51 victory.  Deandre Hunter (6’6″ So. SF, Philadelphia (PA) Friends Central HS scored 19 points to lead Philly Pride, while Anthony Carr (5’11” So. PG, Philadelphia (PA) Abington Friends HS) led Philly Triple Threat with a game-high 20 points and Joshua Sharkey (5’7″ So. PG, Philadelphia (PA) Abington Friends HS) added 19.

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New Big East not off to the most auspicious start

by - Published July 6, 2013 in Columns, Your Phil of Hoops

Monday morning tipped off another round of conference changes, as often happens on that date, and this year the changes were quite seismic. The Great West Conference is now defunct, the Patriot League has ten members, and most of all, the American Athletic Conference officially opened for business and the Big East has a whole new look. And for the new Big East, the start has not been particularly auspicious.

The conference’s new start has been slowed largely by the drawn-out process of hiring a commissioner. Val Ackerman is a solid selection, but the lateness of the hire left her little time to start assembling a staff before the change occurred on Monday. A trip to the conference Web site reflects that: as of Saturday morning, there was only the main page and links to the school sites and the conference’s social media accounts.

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Stevens’ departure a shocker, but Butler and college basketball will be fine

by - Published July 3, 2013 in Columns

Put me down as one of many who was shocked upon hearing the news.

I admit, I never saw Brad Stevens leaving Butler, at least not for a long time. And for an NBA job? That was an even further possibility from my mind.

If anything, I thought those who had him pegged as Mike Krzyzewksi’s successor at Duke might be on to something, although I wondered about that, too. It would make sense from one standpoint, but at the same time, the head coaching job at Duke is one of those jobs that it’s hard to imagine going to someone outside the program’s family even if there may seem to be a lack of obvious candidates.

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Players make New England Elite 75 better than last year

by - Published July 3, 2013 in Columns

WORCESTER, Mass. – The month of July got going with the New England Elite 75 on Monday afternoon at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. Annually an event with some of the best talent in New England, the event was a much better showcase this year than last. Whereas last year many of the kids played like they were trying to amass highlight reels, this time around the kids played like they respected the event, and the end result was better basketball. That also made player evaluation easier.

With that in mind, we take a look at some of the talent that competed on Monday.

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A lot to take from the 2013 NBA Draft, not surprisingly

by - Published June 29, 2013 in Columns, Your Phil of Hoops

Leading up to the NBA Draft, much was said about how weak it was. The jury on that is out, although going by how a draft looked at the time it certainly appears to be the weakest one in a long time. But a key reason the draft was perceived as such is also the reason it was well worth watching and didn’t disappoint those who figured there would be a lot to take from this.

Just take a look at the eyebrow-raising results on the evening:

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2013 Hoopville Spring Finale notes

by - Published June 27, 2013 in Columns

BOSTON – The 2013 Hoopville Spring Finale is in the books, and in addition the 2013 spring circuit is history.  Over 50 teams competed and six emerged victorious, including four programs that won here for the first time.  Plenty of other teams came close and/or walked away with just one loss on the weekend.  The all-important month of July now beckons.

Before we get to that, let’s look back at some notes from this weekend.

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2013 Hoopville Spring Finale sees several new champions

by - Published June 24, 2013 in Columns

BOSTON – Sunday was the day for championship games in the Hoopville Spring Finale, and six teams walked away with medals telling that story. The day started bright and early with young players in the morning before the oldest players took center stage in the afternoon. It also started with a few new faces in the winner’s circle before a couple of teams that have already won some titles returned to that place.

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2013 Hoopville Spring Finale Preview

by - Published June 21, 2013 in Columns

The fourth annual Hoopville Spring Finale is on tap this weekend at the Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center in Boston.  June is a month without many team events on the travel circuit as camps and showcases take center stage for a lot of the month, and the Hoopville Spring Finale has filled a void in that respect as one of the best team events in the northeast at that time.  Many teams get a chance to prepare for the important events in July in Boston and have done so successfully before going on to success in front of college coaches.

Naturally, the base of teams is in Massachusetts and more specifically Boston, but once again a number of teams from outside the area will be competing as well.  Included in that group are three programs from Canada.  There will be teams competing in 10-under and 12-under age groups to go along with high school age groups, and right now we take a look at the latter set of teams competing this weekend.

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Looking back at a busy basketball Saturday in Massachusetts

by - Published May 20, 2013 in Columns

It was a busy weekend of basketball in Massachusetts, and Saturday saw action in two main events a long way from each other.  First, we checked in on the Hall of Fame Spring Classic in Amherst, then headed to the Massachusetts AAU Final Four in Foxboro.

One team that won a pair of games early in Amherst was the BC Eagles, who have a couple of notable wing prospects.  Calvin Crawford (6’8″ Sr. SF, Montgomery (NY) Valley Central HS) appears to have the higher ceiling, and he looked better here than in limited viewing last month as he had transition finishes and stickbacks.  Teammate Travis Cook (6’4″ Jr. SF, Middletown (NY) High) is a baby physically with some length, which he used to poke the ball away a couple of times.  While slight, he’s athletic and is worth keeping an eye on.

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Your Phil of Hoops

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Hoopville Archives

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

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2015 Hoopville Spring Finale Notes

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