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2016-17 Conference USA Post-Mortem

by - Published June 22, 2017 in Columns, Conference Notes

Now that’s the way to build on a program-defining moment.

After stunning Michigan State as a 15 seed in the first round of the 2016 NCAA Tournament, Middle Tennessee State could’ve faded into obscurity and been for all intents and purposes a one-hit wonder, a nice program making a brief national cameo. Instead, the Blue Raiders didn’t just fade, they were considerably better, and certainly the story of the 2016-17 season for Conference USA.

Middle Tennessee built on arguably the greatest moment in the school’s basketball history with what was likely the best season in school history. The Blue Raiders won 31 games, drubbing a couple SEC teams along the way, blew through C-USA for regular season and tournament titles, and won a game in the NCAA Tournament for the second straight year. The latter put them among an elite group of just 15 schools to win at least one NCAA tourney main draw game each of the last two years. … Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Friday, January 27, 2017

by - Published January 27, 2017 in The Morning Dish

Thursday night meant one thing among all others in college hoops: Cincinnati vs. Xavier. The Crosstown Shootout. The best non-conference rivalry in college basketball, and (in this opinion) one of the top three rivalries in the sport right now.

A game that always provides plenty of that “buzz” the NCAA men’s basketball committee so badly wants was relegated to ESPN2 (a somewhat minor note, but never let someone tell you perceived issues in this sport aren’t self-inflicted), but it was still every bit the biggest and best game of the night that its history regularly suggests it will be. While ESPN’s decision to show a pretty good matchup on its mothership with North Carolina hosting Virginia Tech was a relative flop (the Tar Heels breezed to a 91-72 win), Cincinnati fought back for an 86-78 win to defeat its bitter city rival for the first time in four meetings and in what was incredibly just the third-ever meeting between the two when both were ranked. … Continue Reading

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – January 20, 2017

by - Published January 20, 2017 in Columns, Podcasts

Welcome to the latest edition of Talking Hoops with Ted Sarandis. In this episode, we touch on several big picture subjects in between the current game play, so there is much to get to.

We begin with Conference USA, where Ted got to see UAB pick up a win as they and Middle Tennessee lead the way. UAB may have a new coach in Rob Ehsan, but the Blazers appear to not be missing a beat. They’re in a conference that had some very good days before conference realignment hit them as hard as any conference, leaving them now with a group that includes some bad teams at the bottom.

… Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Thursday, December 8, 2016

by - Published December 8, 2016 in The Morning Dish

The ranks of unbeaten teams in NCAA Division I college basketball dwindled a little further last night.

Butler became the first team to drop, when Indiana State’s Brenton Scott hit a free throw with less than a second left to give the Sycamores a 72-71 victory. The Bulldogs lost for the first time in nine games, while ISU continues to work on evening the score after three close losses in the AdvoCare Invitational-and did so in this one on Larry Bird’s 60th birthday, too!

TCU soon lost too, trimming the list of teams without a loss to nine, as SMU topped the Horned Frogs 74-59 in a game closer than the final score. Former president George W. Bush and wife Laura were on hand, as was former British prime minister David Cameron, and it’s time that this rivalry of Dallas vs. Fort Worth picks up steam and becomes a big deal every year, the way it ought to be. … Continue Reading

Scanning the Nation Notebook – Dec. 6, 2016

by - Published December 6, 2016 in Columns

Temple will still have ups and downs this season because of how young the Owls are. But the talent Fran Dunphy has is sure going to be fun to watch. Obi Enechionyia is playing with supreme confidence right now, a 6-foot-8 matchup nightmare who is on fire from three, and freshmen Quinton Rose and Alani Moore are playing major minutes and are exciting, energetic players. Josh Brown also has returned from an Achilles injury faster than many expected and provides veteran leadership. Temple’s players also are moving themselves and moving the ball more this year than in recent years. The Owls’ wins over Florida State and West Virginia were no flukes. … 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

The Morning Dish – Sunday, November 13, 2016

by - Published November 13, 2016 in The Morning Dish

If anyone briefly was distracted by the shiny object on college basketball’s opening night that was two excellent, national-television games involving top 20 teams in Hawaii, Saturday returned them to reality and gave us a prime exhibit of just why Division I college basketball starts its season about two weeks two early.

When measuring games by the quality of both opponents, the two best games of Saturday were Southern at Ohio University and Texas Southern at Texas-Arlington. No, that is not a misprint, nor is it an exaggeration-go ahead, look at Saturday’s schedule and even try to suggest another game was a better matchup on paper. … Continue Reading

2015-16 Conference USA Post-Mortem

by - Published June 2, 2016 in Columns, Conference Notes

After being largely ignored and certainly disrespected throughout the regular season, Conference USA made the biggest noise on the first weekend of the postseason with Middle Tennessee State’s 90-81 victory over second-seeded Michigan State in the first round of the NCAA tournament.

Despite their 21 wins in the regular season and three in the conference tournament, the Blue Raiders were rated no better than a No. 15 seed as the league’s only NCAA representative. Regular-season champion UAB, a 26-game winner at the time at-large invitations were issued, had to settle for the NIT.

… Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Tuesday, April 5, 2016

by - Published April 5, 2016 in The Morning Dish

A college basketball season like 2015-16 deserved better than the past few rounds of the NCAA Tournament had provided, and Monday night a thoroughly enjoyable year received a fitting sendoff with one of the great Final Four championship games in the sport’s history.

In the 78 wondrous years of the NCAA Tournament, Villanova’s 77-74 win over North Carolina-decided on a Kris Jenkins three-pointer at the buzzer-immediately goes down on the short list for the greatest finishes in a title game in tourney history. There is the Lorenzo Charles put-back dunk for North Carolina State in its shocker over Houston in 1983 and Keith Smart’s winner with four seconds left for Indiana in 1987 was every bit as clutch, for it came with the Hoosiers down a point to Syracuse. Loyola (Ill.)’s 1963 overtime win over Cincinnati on Vic Rouse’s tip-in at the buzzer also belongs right there. … Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Friday, March 11, 2016

by - Published March 11, 2016 in The Morning Dish

Coaches such as Jim Valvano, Rollie Massimino and Tom Izzo are among those to make the month of March their personal playground over the years, regularly leading teams on extended runs, regardless of the strength of their teams in the regular season.

Few would include Ray Harper on that list, but it has become time that they should. As the excellent ESPN and American Sports Network analyst Mark Adams prophetically pointed out Wednesday, you can’t bet against Harper’s teams in March, and boy, was that shown again yesterday. … 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 – 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.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – June 21, 2017

June 21, 2017 by

In our latest podcast, we talk about the NBA Draft, of course, but spend much more time on the happenings at Ohio State and Louisville and the implications starting next season.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – May 17, 2017

May 18, 2017 by

In our latest podcast, we start with the NBA Draft Lottery, then talk about a big pickup for Duke, important transfers, the coaching carousel winding down and much more.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – April 27, 2017

April 27, 2017 by

In our latest podcast, the business of college sports, as well as that of sports media, takes center stage. We talk about the layoffs at ESPN, college basketball’s opening night, and Wichita State’s departure from the Missouri Valley Conference. We close with thoughts on a departed friend of the media business as well.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – April 11, 2017

April 11, 2017 by

In our first off-season edition, we look back on the season that just ended, including redemption for one team and a big development for a conference that has had more questions than success on the hardwood. We also look at players coming and going, as well as big coaching news on a day where there was a lot of it.

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.