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The Morning Dish – Sunday, March 6, 2016

by - Published March 6, 2016 in Columns
hoopguy-orange

Two NCAA Tournament bids went out on Saturday night, one expected and one not necessarily expected at the beginning of the day. And for different reasons, you can’t blame either coach if they got a little emotional.

We start with the Ohio Valley Championship game, the one certainty when the day began. UT-Martin, who has never been to the NCAA Tournament, took on Austin Peay, the school that’s been there six times and has been among the signature programs in the conference for a long time. Head coach Dave Loos, who for a long time was also the athletic directory, turned 69 on Saturday and has been doing this for a long time. He is the winningest coach in Ohio Valley Conference history, having been at Austin Peay for 26 years; the conference’s other coaches have combined to be at their schools for 33 years. He’s seen a lot, and won a lot, but this one was clearly different for him.

… Continue Reading

Evansville continues almost-silent consistency in Arch Madness win over Missouri State

by - Published March 5, 2016 in Columns, Conference Notes
evansville

Seventh-seeded Missouri State had No. 2 seed Evansville right where it wanted in the teams’ Missouri Valley Conference Tournament quarterfinal Thursday night-tie game, 15 minutes to play, pressure squarely on the higher seed.

Then, with quiet efficiency on its next three possessions against the Bears’ matchup zone defense, the Purple Aces scored six straight points-layup, layup, two free throws. Evansville would not trail again.

The aura of the game suggested all was still within the balance yet with less than eight minutes left when the Bears’ Dequon Miller scored on a drive to reduce the Aces’ lead to 48-45. D.J. Balentine-the leading active scorer in the country-followed with two three-pointers. Boom.
… Continue Reading

Arch Madness-tested Northern Iowa cool, collected in holding off Salukis

by - Published March 5, 2016 in Columns, Conference Notes
northerniowa

Wichita State has earned much of the recognition in the Missouri Valley Conference this year, and deservedly so, but let it not be forgotten that Northern Iowa is the defending champion of Arch Madness. And there are plenty of veterans still around from that team who know how to get the job done again.

The fourth-seeded Panthers issued a reminder on Friday in St. Louis of just how dangerous they are. Not in blowout fashion, mind you-there has been no such thing the first two days of Arch Madness this year-but with a composed, confident effort in a 66-60 win over Southern Illinois in the quarterfinals Friday. … Continue Reading

Wichita State latest top seed to sidestep danger in MVC quarters

by - Published March 5, 2016 in Columns, Conference Notes
wichitastate

At the Missouri Valley Conference Tournament, it’s the tradition unlike any other: the winner of the first round game between the eighth and ninth seeds annually goes on to be a real pest to top seeds in the quarterfinals.

Arch Madness is not designed with teams seeded eighth or ninth in mind. Every year, the winner of the tourney’s first game at 6 p.m. Central time on a Thursday gets a miniscule amount of time to recover, playing at noon the next day, and against the event’s top seed.
… Continue Reading

UAB could be an NCAA sleeper — if Blazers make field

by - Published March 4, 2016 in Columns
uab

UAB won its league’s regular-season title handily, has matched a school-record for wins in a single season, and can set a school record for road wins with a victory Saturday afternoon in its finale at Florida Atlantic.

Such a résumé would get teams from high-level conferences a high seed in the NCAA Tournament and garner talk of a deep run in March.

But coach Jerod Haase is savvy enough to know his Blazers are operating in a one-bid league and that they need to win the Conference USA tourney to earn one of the 68 slots in the NCAA field.

… Continue Reading

Rider eliminates Quinnipiac in MAAC Tournament play

by - Published March 4, 2016 in Columns
author_floriani

ALBANY, N.Y. – Opening round men’s action at the MAAC post season tournament began with No. 8 seed Rider facing No. 9 seed Quinnipiac. The two split their head-to-head regular season meetings. Their Thursday evening meeting opened up first round men’s action at the Times Union Center.

Rider edged Quinnipiac 60-57 to earn a date with Monmouth on Friday in the conference quarterfinals.

After a relatively early first half, Rider made its mark the final twenty minutes. Quinnipiac kept pace early as the first five possessions breakdown shows. Looking at the first five possessions after half time gives a good look to see how the teams are coming out, and ascertain if adjustments have been made and what is their affect.

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Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – March 4, 2016

by - Published March 4, 2016 in Columns
hoopguy-divisionII

Welcome to the latest edition of Talking Hoops with Ted Sarandis. In it, Ted and I get into the start of the best month of basketball, as Championship Week is now upon us.

We start with a look at some of the postseason awards that came out this week, which was in a number of mid-major conferences. In doing so, we specifically take note of one standout player and team who will be in a conference tournament next week, and they might be a trendy upset pick if they win.

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PlayPlay

Regular season titles should matter more than they will to committee

by - Published March 3, 2016 in Columns
glatczak

Think debates over bubble teams in the NCAA Tournament are a fairly recent, internet-fueled phenomenon? Nope.

The year was 1995, still several years before bubble watches or bracketology. Joe Lunardi was an editor of the Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook, not yet on ESPN providing his affable insight seemingly every 10 minutes. It was only 10 years into the Tournament’s run as a 64-team event, though it had been 20 years since it was entirely a tournament of champions.

Though there was no widespread internet yet, plenty of discussion and grousing over the tourney’s final at-large bids was every bit as heated then as it is now. That year’s hot topic was at-large spots given to Manhattan, Miami (Ohio), Santa Clara and Xavier, at the expense of teams like George Washington, Georgia Tech and Iowa.
… Continue Reading

2016 CAA Postseason Awards – One Man’s Vote

by - Published March 3, 2016 in Columns
colonial

The final CAA Tournament under the only commissioner it has ever known, Tom Yeager, is ahead of us starting on Friday night. If the season to date is any indication, what is also the last tournament in Baltimore – it moves to Charleston for the next three years – should be a great four days.

Before that, we will learn who takes home the conference’s postseason awards. As is always the case at this time of the year, I feel it is worth sharing how I voted for the CAA postseason awards. I have been a voter for the last 11 years, and always feel like this also gives a sense of how I saw the season play out and how things look heading into the conference tournament.

… Continue Reading

UW-Green Bay cranking up pressure on both ends under new coach

by - Published February 29, 2016 in Columns
wisconsingreenbay

There was an obvious irony to the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay hosting a Throwback Night on Friday. For if one is familiar with the program’s history, this year’s Phoenix team is anything but a throwback-unless maybe one is throwing it back to 1971.

Dave Buss-the program’s very successful first coach-once led a team that averaged over 90 points per game in 1970-71, but his teams soon came to be known for a slower pace and zone defense. The iconic Dick Bennett’s defensive philosophies at Green Bay-as the school likes its athletic programs to go by now-are among the most influential in the sport today. Even recent coach Brian Wardle’s teams were hard to score on, with an underappreciated athleticism and length not many would expect at the Horizon League level. … Continue Reading

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Your Phil of Hoops

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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.

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

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