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The Morning Dish – Thursday, January 19, 2017

by - Published January 19, 2017 in The Morning Dish

Well, now we know what’s behind one of the real mysteries of this college basketball season: the absence of Arizona guard Allonzo Trier. It’s entirely possible that we won’t see him at all this season.

On a busy night of games, this story takes the lead. It brings in a lot of different subjects.

Trier, who just turned 21 on Tuesday, figured to be a Pac-12 Player of the Year candidate, as well as an All-America candidate after he came on strong the latter part of last season. Dillon Brooks might have been the favorite for that, but Trier was there in most projections. But he was pulled out of Media Day, and while not playing, he still sat on the bench during games, which does not always happen when a player is suspended or ineligible. As time went on and the Wildcats didn’t have him, you wondered if they were going to level off just as you thought about how good they could be with him, considering they have been winning without him.

… Continue Reading

Scanning the Nation: Notes from the first weekend of Jan. league play

by - Published January 9, 2017 in Columns

It was a rather docile first full weekend of January, early in the conference portion of the college basketball season. Here are some quick hit notes from around the country, from A (Arizona) to…well, at least W (Western Illinois):

  • Sometimes the effect of a single player being out of the lineup is overdone, but early on it sure looks like Sindarius Thornwell’s return for South Carolina is a game-changer. Thornwell totaled 19 points, 11 rebounds and six steals in his first game back and then posted 16, seven and five in those categories Saturday in a 79-68 win against Texas A&M. We’re thinking the Gamecocks look good to emerge as the second- or third-best team in the SEC; in fact, mark down Jan. 18 and Feb. 21. That’s when Frank Martin’s team plays Florida.

… Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Thursday, December 22, 2016

by - Published December 22, 2016 in The Morning Dish

As heated as it has become, with two power broker coaches and both teams annually in the top 10, if you didn’t know the history it would be hard to imagine a team could have dominated the Kentucky/Louisville series recently, but entering their matchup this year the Wildcats were doing exactly that.

Kentucky entered Wednesday’s meeting having won eight of nine over the Cardinals, including four straight. A few more UK wins and it might be argued that there is no rivalry anymore, not until Louisville starts taking victory honors a little more frequently.

Suffice to say there are no such worries of this series diminishing any time soon. Not as long as John Calipari and Rick Pitino are on the sidelines and as long as the two play hotly contested games like they did last night, when Louisville earned a 73-70 victory at home. … Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Monday, November 21, 2016

by - Published November 21, 2016 in The Morning Dish

The first week-plus has not exactly gone the way Mike Krzyzewski probably drew it up, but Duke has emerged from it in a pretty good place. If they were a stock, you might buy them.

The Blue Devils capped a challenging stretch to open the season with a 75-65 win over a good Rhode Island team on Sunday to capture the Hall of Fame Tip-Off Tournament in Connecticut. It was a game that showed what this team can do as well as its ceiling.

… Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Friday, November 18, 2016

by - Published November 18, 2016 in The Morning Dish

Like too many events in the ever increasingly (and overly) cluttered landscape of college basketball exempted tournaments, the Tire Pros Invitational has something of an identity crisis.

Of course, some of that is because the event is actually the former Puerto Rico Tip-Off, which was moved to the U.S. mainland this year due to concerns about the Zika virus in Puerto Rico, and thus is being played at the same place that will host the Advocare Invitational in less than a week. Even if the event were back in its regular location, though, it would look very similar to so many events like it, another generic eight-team event regularly played before pitiful crowds that has made this a dime-a-dozen part of the season.
… Continue Reading

2016-17 CBB Preview Questions: Can the sport shake its self-inflicted identity crisis?

by - Published November 8, 2016 in Columns

As the 2016-17 college basketball season nears, one would think the caretakers of the sport should feel pretty good about its state.

The most recent NCAA Tournament provided a likable champion and one of the sport’s all-time greatest title games and finishes. The recent script that has seen freshmen dominating the sport was flipped, with juniors and seniors the top players in the country, regardless of how much some TV networks tried to tell us otherwise.

The long-desired goal to have more scoring was accomplished, and the aim to clean up physical defense was largely met. And, thus far, they did not come by sacrificing the parity and inclusiveness that forms so much of what makes the sport attractive nationally. … Continue Reading

Twenty teams to keep an eye on in 2016-17

by - Published November 7, 2016 in Columns

Different people enjoy college basketball for different reasons. It’s part of what makes the sport so enjoyable for some of us.

At the risk of being self-indulgent, one of the attractions of college basketball for me, from the time first watching the NCAA Tournament in 1987 at nine years old, but even earlier in that hoop season, has always been that you just never know where the next story will come from in this sport. The unpredictability, the joy of a team coming out of nowhere or finding out something about a team you knew next to nothing about-or even a team you thought you knew-is a big part of what makes the sport unique from so many others.

… Continue Reading

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

by - Published October 21, 2016 in Columns, Your Phil of Hoops

In recent years, when the subject of the best basketball conferences has come up, how good the ACC and Big Ten are has often been at the center. Previously, it centered on the Big East before it broke up, including in 2011 when 11 of its 16 teams made the NCAA Tournament, while last year, the ACC set a record for NCAA Tournament wins by its members with 19. (And that was a year after the ACC came up one short of the previous record of 18 by the 1985 Big East.) The Pac-12 grabbed a bit of the conversation as well since it was very deep and intensely competitive. All the while, the Big 12 has been on quite a run, and has arguably been the best conference of late.

Continuing that run, however, will be a different challenge this season.

… Continue Reading

2015-16 Big 12 Post-Mortem

by - Published June 21, 2016 in Columns, Conference Notes

The Big 12 has been on one heck of a run over the last three years, but it is undeniable the league took its game up even another notch in 2015-16.

Three straight years now, the Big 12 has finished first in conference RPI (some RPI measures had it second in 2013-14), kept a steady presence in top 25 polls all year (it finished the season with an incredible streak of 38 consecutive weeks with at least five teams in the polls) and in all three years put 70% (seven) of its teams in the NCAA Tournament, a feat accomplished just seven times total by any conference and by none in 21 years before the Big 12 did in 2014. … Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Sunday, April 3, 2016

by - Published April 3, 2016 in The Morning Dish

In so many ways, the NCAA Tournament has consistently, without fail delivered one quality game after another for literally decades, and nowhere has that consistency been more able to be counted on than in the Final Four.

The record books don’t lie; you can go back for 40 years of this event, and it is rare to find even single national semifinal games that one would classify as uncompetitive, to say nothing of having two in the same years. All of which makes Saturday’s results more surprising, yet perhaps also indicative of the way this year’s tourney has gone.

Villanova and North Carolina are the last two teams standing in this season after winning by margins ranging from comfortable to mind-boggling. The Wildcats steamrolled Oklahoma 95-51 in the first semifinal before Carolina easily handled Syracuse 83-66 in the second. … Continue Reading

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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.

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

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!

Hoopville Podcasts

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – January 20, 2017

January 20, 2017 by

In our latest podcast, we touch on a number of issues affecting conferences like Conference USA, as well as a big loss for Creighton, less mystery in Arizona, and more on the ACC as we look forward to the weekend.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – January 12, 2017

January 12, 2017 by

In our latest podcast, we talk about a short stint in the top spot of the polls, some developments in the Mountain West Conference, and more of the ACC before closing with the Big East and Atlantic 10.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – December 24, 2016

December 24, 2016 by

In our latest podcast, we talk about the great games Kentucky has been a part of lately. We go on to other ACC matters involving arch rivals, as well as some quick hits and a conference race that should be as good as expected.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – December 16, 2016

December 16, 2016 by

In our latest podcast, we talk about a coaching legend reaching a milestone, the defending champs looking very good and continuing their winning ways close to home, and some off-court news during a light week of game action.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – November 29, 2016

November 29, 2016 by

Early season tournaments are the focus in this episode, with a look at how strong a few Big East teams are out of the gate and how strong the ACC could be. Plus one SEC team had a big week outside the scope of tournaments.

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.