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2016-17 Southern Conference Post-Mortem

by - Published August 7, 2017 in Columns, Conference Notes

The Southern Conference has been around for seemingly forever. Longer than the ACC. Longer than the SEC. Shoot, the league basically served as the breeding ground for both of them.

It shouldn’t be a surprise, then, that a league that has withstood the loss of Alabama, Duke, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, etc., etc., could also move on just fine after losing one of its most prominent recent members. A conference doesn’t stick around for nearly 100 years without being able to roll with the changes, and while Davidson’s departure a couple years ago was thought to be a major blow to the SoCon’s basketball product, the truth is the league is stronger now than it’s been in years.

It can’t be said enough just what a job the Southern has done since its flagship basketball program left for the Atlantic 10 in 2014. The re-additions of East Tennessee State and longtime member VMI plus the add of Mercer from the Atlantic Sun were tremendous. Just as important have been the improvements of other members, keyed by smart coaching hires and some coaching stability in the league now as well. … Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Friday, February 3, 2017

by - Published February 3, 2017 in The Morning Dish

It wouldn’t be a college basketball season without Belmont finding a way to make ripples with its excellence, and sure enough, the Bruins are at it again.

After a relatively slow start to the season, Belmont has now won 13 straight games, including 11 consecutive in the Ohio Valley Conference to rank as one of the few teams remaining undefeated in its conference. That includes an 81-69 win Thursday night at Murray State in the latest renewal of what has become the OVC’s best current series.

The Bruins and Racers again put on an entertaining game, one that was in doubt until the final minutes. The game was a clash of the league’s East and West division leaders as well as perhaps the league’s two best players (Belmont’s Evan Bradds vs. Murray State guard Jonathan Stark), and the contrast in styles of the Bruins ’ always efficient four-out offense against the Racers’ attacking guards made for a game again worthy of its national television date on ESPNU. … Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Wednesday, December 7, 2016

by - Published December 7, 2016 in The Morning Dish

Three distinct events, all exceptional and special in their own way, led the college basketball schedule Tuesday. They were unique, poignant, just fun, or all of the above, and it’s impossible to feature one but not the others.

On Dec. 7, though, any discussion has to start with Pearl Harbor, especially in this year marking the 75th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. The Pearl Harbor Invitational is one of the sport’s best new events in just its second year. Fox Sports 1 has led the charge on this one, which is played in Bloch Arena at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam in a tiny-but-character-filled bandbox that looks great on TV. … Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Thursday, November 3, 2016

by - Published November 3, 2016 in The Morning Dish

Welcome back to the Morning Dish for the 2016-17 season. Opening night is just eight days away, and as we get closer to the first counting games we continue Hoopville’s brief conference looks entering the season.

Few leagues were more balanced last year than the Atlantic Sun, where all eight teams were plenty capable of beating each other, evidenced by the conference’s cellar-sharing teams (Stetson and USC Upstate) winning a combined four times against the teams seeded first and second in the conference tourney. North Florida won the regular season crown a year ago but was blitzed in the league tourney semis by Florida Gulf Coast, and the Eagles are the prohibitive favorite entering this year. Marc-Eddy Norelia should be the most dominant player in the league and FGCU has enough size, experience and talent to make some noise out of conference, too.

… Continue Reading

2015-16 Southern Conference Post-Mortem

by - Published June 1, 2016 in Columns, Conference Notes

When all was said and done, there was just nothing that could stop Tennessee-Chattanooga’s re-emergence in 2015-16 as the Southern Conference’s best team.

A first-year, first-time head coach? No problem. Early season road chances against teams like Dayton, Georgia and Illinois, rather than being confidence-shakers, instead were platforms for glossy wins. A season-ending injury to the team’s top scorer was only a minor hiccup. A brutal conference schedule that included a stretch of five games in 10 days was just a chance to win five games in 10 days. … Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Tuesday, March 8, 2016

by - Published March 8, 2016 in The Morning Dish

Tthe unabashed chaos of the conference tournaments this year may have reached a climax Monday night, with a pair of teams losing-and maybe even three-who will now be talked about at length for the next week. Then again, the night was pretty much par for the course for this season, so we shouldn’t be surprised in the least if/when it continues.

Monmouth and Valparaiso both lost in their conference tourneys Monday night, and both now for the next six days are going to be subject of cheerleading for their causes and condescension from major school apologists who still do think they would’ve finished 12th in the Big Ten. The Hawks lost to red-hot Iona 79-76 in the Metro Atlantic final, while Valpo took a 99-92 loss to Wisconsin-Green Bay in the Horizon League semis.
… Continue Reading

Regular season titles should matter more than they will to committee

by - Published March 3, 2016 in Columns

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

The Morning Dish – Sunday, February 28, 2016

by - Published February 28, 2016 in The Morning Dish

We’re on the doorstep of March now, so there isn’t much that has been left uncovered in a season, but the question must be asked: is there a better secret in college basketball this year than Fresno State?

Few may know it, but the Bulldogs have very quietly had a terrific year, one that could stop right now and would still be called a success. Fresno State reached the 20-win mark on Saturday with a 92-82 win on the road at New Mexico, affirming the team’s status as the second-best team in the Mountain West.
… Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Friday, February 12, 2016

by - Published February 12, 2016 in The Morning Dish

Temple has been one of the more schizophrenic teams in the country this year that of late has been giving us a taste of just how good it can be when right. Thus, it was only fitting that the Owls’ game against Connecticut on Thursday was a microcosm of their season.

Temple looked beat, trailing by 12 points with six minutes left in the game but finished on a 21-4 run the rest of the way, coming all the way back for a 63-58 win. The win served multiple purposes, putting the Owls in first in the American Athletic Conference, finishing a season sweep of the Huskies, and also giving them a trump card in any possible future comparisons with their league foe when NCAA selections take place next month.
… Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Tuesday, February 9, 2016

by - Published February 9, 2016 in The Morning Dish

With all of the basketball history at Villanova, it’s hard to believe the Wildcats had never been the No. 1-ranked team in the country in the 67-year history of the Associated Press poll until yesterday.

It’s not necessarily surprising the program hadn’t quite reached the top yet in the highly successful Jay Wright era, if only because it’s fresh in the memory how those years have been included repeated NCAA trips with moderate success, save for a Final Four in 2009 and an Elite Eight in 2006. The program’s history goes back far, though, even well before the famous Rollie Massimino in the 1980s. … 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!

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.

Hoopville Podcasts

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – December 8, 2017

December 8, 2017 by

In our latest podcast, we talk about a bizarre finish to an early-season tournament game, the Pac-12’s early struggles, Florida teams going in different directions and two northeast teams trending less relevant even as they excite fans at a famous arena.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – November 22, 2017

November 22, 2017 by

In our pre-Thanksgiving podcast, we look at a key injury that is likely to be devastating for his team and an under-the-radar 4-0 week, then move on to some early SEC impressions and a couple of teams that just continue to win.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – November 9, 2017

November 10, 2017 by

The season is almost here, and we take a look at some of what to expect this coming season. We have preseason polls, conference changes, a look at some conferences and some matchups to start the season.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – October 2, 2017

October 2, 2017 by

The FBI has zeroed in on college basketball in a big way, and what has happened may be the beginning of a massive hit to the sport. We discuss what we know thus far in our latest podcast.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – August 17, 2017

August 18, 2017 by

In our latest podcast, we check in with some good news from a few teams overseas after a big scare, plus a big addition for a championship contender, a conference on the rise, and a great coach thinking about a return to the bench.

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.