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The Morning Dish – Monday, February 8, 2016

by - Published February 8, 2016 in The Morning Dish
hoopguy-orange

Now in its third year of existence, the American Athletic Conference seems to be in an unenviable position. It’s too early to cast any long-term conclusion on the conference, but already the conference’s best year was its first one, and it almost appears to be on a downward trend. There’s one factor that’s not helping them this season, either.

In the conference’s first season, UConn won the national championship and Louisville had a very good team. Cincinnati and Memphis also made the NCAA Tournament. Then last season, SMU and Cincinnati made it, while Tulsa’s bubble burst and Uconn needed to win the conference tournament – held at the XL Center, where they play a few games each year – in order to make it, but lost in the final after a near-storybook run. Last year, the conference really struggled to get quality wins out of conference.

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The Morning Dish – Friday, February 5, 2016

by - Published February 5, 2016 in The Morning Dish
hoopguy-orange

For the best-kept secret among conferences in college basketball this season, look no further than the Colonial Athletic Association, which also just so happens to have the very best conference race this year.

Perhaps the game of the night Thursday was in the CAA, where UNC Wilmington visited Hofstra with sole possession of first place on the line. The game lived up to all one could’ve hoped for, coming down to the wire before Denzel Ingram hit the winning three-pointer with four seconds left to give the Seahawks a 70-67 win.

The CAA has long done a very nice job with its regional television packages, but this message goes to the national networks: this game belonged on national television. UNCW rallied from a 20-point first-half deficit and from 14 down with 11:28 to play. The Seahawks continued to chip away and took the lead late, but then had to weather a tying triple by Juan’ya Green with 20 seconds left before winning their eighth straight game.
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The Morning Dish – Monday, February 1, 2016

by - Published February 1, 2016 in Columns
hoopguy-cyan

In the last year and a half, Dana Altman has reminded the college basketball world that he’s a very good basketball coach. Just in case we all forgot that.

Maybe we did. It happens sometimes. We sometimes miss things happening away from the limelight, and Altman had that for a while in an unlikely fashion – at a mid-major, albeit a consistently very good one – before going to relative obscurity.

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The Morning Dish – Friday, January 22, 2016

by - Published January 22, 2016 in The Morning Dish
hoopguy-yellow

As much as almost any teams in the country, Gonzaga and Saint Mary’s are programs both known for offense, but their latest meeting was one marked with defense.

It was defense-as well as clutch play from their oft-maligned backcourt-that put the Bulldogs in complete control of the game on the road at a hostile McKeon Pavilion for 32 minutes, building a lead as high as 15 points. And it was D that got the Gaels back into it late, forcing turnovers and getting stops that had eluded them most of the night and setting the stage for a comeback that will be remembered.

The result was one of the best games yet in one of the very best series on the west coast, as Saint Mary’s rallied all the way back for a stirring 70-67 win. The Gaels held serve at home, while the Bulldogs’ claim to continued dominance in the West Coast Conference was put on hold after a disappointing loss.
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The Morning Dish – Friday, January 15, 2016

by - Published January 15, 2016 in The Morning Dish
hoopguy-orange

Thursday night provided a flurry of activity, good games and most notable results, but few games this year have drawn us in more at the end like the Conference USA tilt between UAB and Old Dominion did.

One-time Sun Belt Conference rivals who now are two of the heavies in C-USA, the Blazers and Monarchs provided captivating theater in the late stages of their game and one of the best finishes of the season. The final act was an offensive rebound under the basket and putback by 5-foot-10 inch UAB guard Nick Norton with 2.3 seconds left in overtime, and a halfcourt shot by ODU’s terrific Trey Freeman went off the back rim, giving the Blazers a 72-71 win.

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The Morning Dish – Thursday, January 7, 2016

by - Published January 7, 2016 in The Morning Dish
hoopguy-yellow

One of what may be the games of the year in the Missouri Valley took place last night. And now, with one its back pocket, Wichita State gets ready for what could well be another one.

The Shockers held on to defeat upstart Evansville 67-64 at Koch Arena on Wednesday, improving to 3-0 in Valley play and dealing the Purple Aces their first conference loss and just their third loss of the season. The Shockers got their customary terrific game from Fred VanVleet (16 points, nine assists) but needed more, especially on a night when Ron Baker scored just nine points on 3-for-10 shooting and no other starter scored more than eight points.

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The Morning Dish – Monday, January 4, 2016

by - Published January 4, 2016 in The Morning Dish
hoopguy-yellow

With Sunday’s slate featuring plenty of Pac-12 games, we almost have to revisit it after taking a look a couple of days ago. And what we come away with is a conference that will be a lot of fun to watch all the way through.

The conference has some good strength, noted by five teams in the RPI top 30, eight in the top 50 and ten in the top 60. What it doesn’t have is a clear favorite, or a team whose play thus far puts them head and shoulders above everyone else. So while at first glance it may not appear that the conference has a national title contender, it has a lot of other things going for it right now.

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The Morning Dish – Tuesday, December 22, 2015

by - Published December 22, 2015 in The Morning Dish
hoopguy-orange

With the release of the Associated Press Top 25 Poll on Monday, Providence is back in the top 10 for the first time in a long, long time.

With the exception of a No. 6 ranking in the postseason coaches’ poll after their 1987 Final Four appearance, it had been four decades since the Friars made an appearance in the top 10 in the national polls. After Ernie DiGregorio and Marvin Barnes but before the Big East, Billy Donovan and Rick Pitino, the legendary Dave Gavitt led Providence to a 17-1 start in 1977-78, and the apex was a No. 9 national ranking Jan. 24, 1978.
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The Morning Dish – Wednesday, December 16, 2015

by - Published December 16, 2015 in The Morning Dish
hoopguy-orange

UCLA. Notre Dame. USC. Georgetown.

Monmouth.

If you’re looking for a Final Four of all-time college sports royalty, you could do a lot worse than those first four. All four are national brand names. UCLA and Georgetown are two of the signature programs in college basketball over the last 50 years. Notre Dame is by far the biggest name in college football, and USC is easily in the top 10 in that sport.

The term “power” gets thrown around way too freely in college sports in relation to conferences that, frankly, in most cases are carried by a couple athletic programs. Make no mistake, though: all four of these are true “power” programs-UCLA, Notre Dame and USC in all sports, and Georgetown in basketball as a leader in the Big East, the gold standard for NCAA Division I basketball-first leagues.
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The Morning Dish – Tuesday, December 8, 2015

by - Published December 8, 2015 in The Morning Dish
hoopguy-yellow

With Monday night being a mostly quiet one on the college basketball schedule, it left us a little more time to think of former Butler center Andrew Smith, as he enters yet another battle.

Sad news in the college basketball world was shared Monday morning by Andrew Smith’s wife Sam, who revealed her husband is now fighting leukemia. It’s the latest unfortunate turn of health for the former big man who was a member of the Bulldogs’ national runners-up teams in 2010 and 2011.

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Saturday Notes – February 6, 2016

February 7, 2016 by

author_kasiecki

It was a full day of action, one that included two top teams going down in a rarity. Also, a number of other teams suffered a loss that could be a critical blow to their NCAA Tournament at-large hopes.

Saturday Notes – January 30, 2016

January 31, 2016 by

author_kasiecki

In the midst of conference season, a non-conference set of games took center stage. They were far from alone in the important games of the day, though, and we take a look at notes from many of those games.

Saturday Notes – January 23, 2016

January 24, 2016 by

author_kasiecki

A number of games were pushed to another day by a storm on the east coast, but we had plenty of noteworthy games all the same on Saturday.

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Phil Kasiecki on Twitter

Recruiting Coverage

2015 Boston Back to School Showcase recap

September 18, 2015 by

hoopguy-cyan

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.

2015 Hoopville Spring Finale Notes

June 30, 2015 by

hoopguy-divisionII

We look back at more from the 2015 Hoopville Spring Finale, where some of the championship games were worth the price of admission.

A big championship day for a local program at the Hoopville Spring Finale

June 23, 2015 by

hoopguy-yellow

The 2015 Hoopville Spring Finale saw a number of good championship games on Sunday to close it out, and we start our look back with a look at those games.

Player highlights from Mass Elite and Boston Warriors college showcase

June 4, 2015 by

hoopguy-cyan

Two big programs, Mass Elite and the Boston Warriors, got together once again on a college showcase for many of their high school players. We look at some who stood out on the evening.

2015 Massachusetts AAU Tournament notes

June 3, 2015 by

author_kasiecki

Massachusetts held its AAU championship rounds in a few age groups and its entire tournament for the oldest age group this weekend. We take a look at some of Sunday’s action in Foxboro.

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 listening to COLLEGE BASKETBALL TONIGHT, a comprehensive look at the NCAA Tournament hosted by veteran college basketball broadcaster Ted Sarandis, joined by former St. John's and George Washington head coach Mike Jarvis, former Fairfield head coach Terry O'Connor and many great guests, including Hoopville's own Phil Kasiecki.

Here are links to the shows:

March 15, 2015 - First hour | Second hour

March 22, 2015 - First hour | Second hour

March 29, 2015 - First hour | Second hour

April 5, 2015 - First hour | Second hour | Third hour