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Scanning the Nation Notebook Jan. 19 – On transfers, polls, analysts, Oklahoma, Temple and more

by - Published January 19, 2018 in Columns

Notes, numbers, and a bunch of grumblings about college basketball in the middle of January, as we touch on some of the hot topics of late, plus players like Trae Young and Nate Grimes and teams like West Virginia, Temple and Pacific…

The transfer debate has flared up yet again, with various reports (such as this) that immediate eligibility for college football and basketball transfers is imminent in some form. While it’s a topic with reasonable positions on both sides, as usual way too much of the discussion is pointless because it’s flooded with false assumptions or flat-out incorrect information.

By far the most frustrating fable oft floated is the idea that coaches “always” leave their teams for better jobs, and therefore athletes deserve the right to do the same. As much as the coaching profession is an easy target due to its salaries and hasn’t cloaked itself in glory of late either (see: FBI), it’s a ridiculous charge with simply no shred of truth (that we’ve discussed before) and for us is pretty much a non-starter for any discussion of this. … Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Wednesday, November 22, 2017

by - Published November 22, 2017 in The Morning Dish

We will not doubt Baylor again. We will not doubt Baylor again. We will not doubt Baylor again.

Write it on a blackboard 500 times, if that’s what it takes.

It’s become almost a yearly occurrence now that Scott Drew’s Baylor squads are underrated heading into a season. The Bears perennially are undersold. They don’t have blueblood status steeped in decades of tradition. They just may not ‘look’ like a top 20 team in a modern game that values guards upon guards and has little use for teams defined by a quirky defense. Maybe it’s just the bad highlighter uniforms.

Whatever the reason, it’s an error that needs to be corrected. Baylor has become a legitimate year-in, year-out top-20 program, something it showed again in the CBE Hall of Fame Classic the past two days. The Bears topped Wisconsin in a hotly contested semifinal on Monday, and last night they rallied from 12 points down to defeat Creighton 65-59 in the championship to improve to 5-0 this season. … Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Thursday, November 9, 2017

by - Published November 9, 2017 in The Morning Dish

Good morning.

We are now on the eve of the regular season, which is just one day away. Mercifully.

We move on with Hoopville’s preseason rundown of all 32 NCAA Division I conferences:

Bucknell is a prohibitive favorite in the Patriot League this year. Such is the case when a team returns its top nine scorers, all five starters, four all-conference picks (two on the first team) and a player in 6-foot-9 center Nana Foulland who was the conference’s player of the year and defensive player of the year. The Bison are not just experienced but also well-rounded and could make national noise early-they open with Monmouth, Arkansas, North Carolina and Maryland-and late in the NCAA Tournament, where a big season could get them a workable draw like the 9 seed they nabbed in 2006. Perennial nemesis Lehigh, Navy (four starters back), Colgate (likewise) and Boston University should provide enough competition to keep Bucknell sharp. … Continue Reading

2016-17 West Coast Conference Post-Mortem

by - Published June 8, 2017 in Columns, Conference Notes

The West Coast Conference is, as a whole, a conference in some transition. There was not a surprise in who the top three teams in the standings were, as it is a continuation of a recent trend. However, this year figured to be a year that would start to shape the potential of teams outside of those three to try and crash the party one day. The verdict there is a bit mixed at first glance.

Last off-season, a few noteworthy coaching hires were made. The conference suddenly had some coaches who resembled household names, something that doesn’t happen often. While there’s no reason to think they were hired on their names alone, there’s no question the name recognition is thought to be helpful in the attempt to make them competitive with Gonzaga, Saint Mary’s and Brigham Young.

… Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Tuesday, November 15, 2016

by - Published November 15, 2016 in The Morning Dish

The toughness that helped Villanova win a national championship a year ago was on display for the country to see, just two games into the Wildcats’ defense of their title.

In a terrific display of just what college basketball can be when high-level teams embrace playing games at home sites on campus-and not in antiseptic neutral site NBA arenas-the Wildcats held off Purdue 79-76 Monday night at the Boilermakers’ Mackey Arena. And we do mean “held off.”
… Continue Reading

2015-16 West Coast Conference Post-Mortem

by - Published June 20, 2016 in Columns, Conference Notes

If the first couple of months of the off-season is any indication, the feeling in much of the West Coast Conference is that it appears to be at a crossroads. What was a strong top-to-bottom mid-major conference not all that long ago has turned into a predictable, top-heavy conference dominated by three schools.

There is still plenty of good basketball in the conference, to be sure, but from a competitive standpoint, it appears as though three schools have quite clearly separated from the rest of the pack.

… Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Tuesday, December 22, 2015

by - Published December 22, 2015 in The Morning Dish

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.
… Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Friday, December 18, 2015

by - Published December 18, 2015 in The Morning Dish

The telltale signs of a top-notch rivalry come not only when both teams involved are at similar levels, but also when one team is considerably better than the other.

Underdogs regularly causing problems for favorites is that true throw-out-the-record-book quality that takes a series to the next level. While perhaps not as noted nationally as some other annual games, the yearly duel between West Virginia and Marshall in the past has often fallen into that category-the Mountaineers traditionally have had the better program, yet the Thundering Herd frequently have been nipping at their heels, giving the state school all it can handle.

That was precisely the case Thursday night-for about 25 minutes. Marshall-3-6 entering the game-trailed by just three at halftime and even held a brief lead early in the second half, but nationally ranked WVU wore down the Herd as time wound down, eventually finishing with a convincing 86-68 win in the game played in Charleston, W.Va., and known as the Capital Classic.

… Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Sunday, December 13, 2015

by - Published December 13, 2015 in The Morning Dish

Of all the stats one will see this year, this may be one of the hardest to believe: Saturday’s game between Xavier and Cincinnati marked just the second time ever that both teams were nationally ranked entering the Crosstown Shootout.

Since 1988, the Musketeers and Bearcats have combined for exactly three losing seasons between the two of them. In that time there have been 39 NCAA appearances, 12 trips to the Sweet 16 and five to the Elite Eight for what are by almost any measure two of the most successful programs of the last 30 years in college basketball.

Saturday marked the first time the two played as ranked teams since 1994, and Xavier once again gained the upper hand with a 65-55 victory that adds to an early season resume that is among the most impressive in the country. That makes 14 wins in the last 20 meetings for the Musketeers in a series that remains as intense as any in the sport, as we saw once again.
… Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Wednesday, November 11, 2015

by - Published November 11, 2015 in The Morning Dish

We’re now just two days from opening day, and  Hoopville continues our preseason look at all 32 NCAA Division I conferences.

Only two single-bid leagues won an NCAA Tournament game last year in the round of 64, and Conference USA was one of them. UAB stunned Iowa State as a 14 seed, and that game could be a precursor to big things for the Blazers this year. UAB is the favorite and is led by guard Robert Brown and sophomore forward William Lee, who should get better and better. Old Dominion has C-USA’s best player, though, in Trey Freeman, and the Monarchs could be right on the NCAA doorstep again if they can find some interior scoring. Also watch Middle Tennessee State if it can improve on its 41.4% shooting last year.
… 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

Coaching Changes

The coaching carousel is moving. Keep track of the latest coaching changes right here on Hoopville.

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 – April 6, 2018

April 6, 2018 by

In our first podcast in the postseason, we look back one more time on the NCAA Tournament, which was just what we needed at this time. We also look at the NIT, CBI and CIT, as well as important transactions with players leaving early for the NBA Draft and coaching changes.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – April 3, 2018

April 3, 2018 by

The 2018 national championship is in the books, and with it another season of college basketball. We break down the national championship game and some of its implications to wrap up the season.

College Basketball Tonight – April 1, 2018

April 2, 2018 by

Welcome to our Final Four edition of College Basketball Tonight. In this edition, we look ahead to Monday’s national championship game, and bring on two guests – long-time Villanova radio play-by-play broadcaster Ryan Fannon and Radford head coach Mike Jones – to get their thoughts and insights on the game.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – April 1, 2018

April 1, 2018 by

In our latest podcast, we break d own the national semifinals, where one game went back and forth while the other was never really a ballgame thanks to an impressive performance for the ages by the winning team.

College Basketball Tonight – March 26, 2018

March 27, 2018 by

With the Final Four all set, we look back on the regional finals and ahead to the final games of the season. We are joined along the way by veteran writer Ken Davis and Towson head coach Pat Skerry for their insights as well.

Phil Kasiecki on Twitter

Recruiting Coverage

Lincoln captures Hamilton Park title

August 15, 2017 by

For the first time, a public school won the Hamilton Park Summer League, and they were led by a big effort from a junior point guard in the title game.

Notes from a day at the 2017 Boston Shootout

June 12, 2017 by

Some news and notes coming from the second and final day of action at the 2017 Boston Shootout, where the host program provided plenty of talent, but so did a program that produced a team that beat them.

Notes from a day at the 2017 Northeast Hoops Festival

April 11, 2017 by

The Northeast Hoops Festival helped bring in the new spring travel season in New England, and we have notes from some of Saturday’s action.

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.