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2016-17 Big West Post-Mortem

by - Published June 9, 2017 in Columns, Conference Notes

It took a couple years and a much different cast, but UC Davis finished what it started a couple years ago.

Two years after a stunning turnaround resulted in 25 wins and the Big West regular season title, and just one year after going 11-19, the Aggies were back among the conference leaders again. This time, they closed the deal.

Coming from a No. 2 seed in the conference tournament, UC Davis snuck by top seed UC Irvine in the Big West tourney final to earn its first NCAA Tournament bid at the Division I level. It was a satisfying career conclusion for several seniors who were part of that 2014-15 team that was superb in the regular season but fell in the Big West tourney and had to settle for the NIT, and also a great moment for coach Jim Les, who took his second school to the NCAAs. … Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Thursday, March 16, 2017

by - Published March 16, 2017 in The Morning Dish

The postseason is just a couple days old, and already it’s been one wild ride for the Pac-12.

For a time, that ride felt like about 24 straight hours on a rodeo bronc, with lots of bucking and bumps and spinning out of control after Tuesday and most of Wednesday. Life finally settled down for the league late Wednesday night, though, when USC pulled of the type of comeback that seems to be a mark of the NCAA Tournament First Four, storming back from 17 down in the second half to defeat Providence 75-71 and advance into the main draw.

In a bizarre game that recalled BYU’s coming back from 25 points down to defeat Iona in a First Four contest five years ago, the Trojans controlled the first few minutes, then saw the Friars dominate the rest of the first half and take a 46-29 lead early in the second half. Then, the teams changed roles again, with USC taking the lead with more than 6 1/2 minutes left and never slowing down, as Bennie Boatwright scored a career-best 24 and Southern California advanced to a rematch with an SMU team it already defeated earlier this season. … Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Sunday, March 12, 2017

by - Published March 12, 2017 in The Morning Dish

This year’s NCAA Tournament is poised to have a number of great stories, including four schools making their first appearances ever (and a fifth in Northwestern almost certain to).

None will be better, though, than New Orleans. The Southland Conference regular season champion Privateers clinched their spot in the field with a 68-65 overtime victory over Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, and you can bet you’ll be hearing about UNO’s journey to get there for the next week, until it faces almost certainly a 1 or 2 seed (or maybe even a 16 seed) in its first game. … Continue Reading

2015-16 Big West Post-Mortem

by - Published May 13, 2016 in Columns, Conference Notes

Hawaii was a fortuitous-and wise-addition for the Big West Conference when the school joined in 2012, and it took just a couple years for the league to see a significant payoff.

After being a mid-pack team in its first three years in the Big West, the Rainbow Warriors exploded in 2015-16. Under first-year head coach Eran Ganot, Hawaii won a school-record 28 games, tied for the league regular season title and won the conference tournament to clinch a spot in the NCAA Tournament. … Continue Reading

2014-15 Big West Post-Mortem

by - Published June 9, 2015 in Columns, Conference Notes

The Big West entered 2014-15 poised for a very good year, and it eventually got there, albeit in a very roundabout way.

A number of the storylines for the league coming into the season never quite materialized, for a myriad of reasons. Among them:

-Preseason favorite UC Irvine was hammered by injuries for much of the season. Mammoth (7-foot-6) game-changer Mamadou Ndiaye played in less than half the team’s games, and four other regulars missed substantial time. After a 3-2 start that included a scare of Arizona and a tough loss at St. Mary’s, the Anteaters really were never whole again the rest of the year.

… Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Friday, March 6, 2015

by - Published March 6, 2015 in The Morning Dish

The nickname will live on, but as far as the team that earned the label for Florida Gulf Coast, it turns out the first we saw of “Dunk City” in the NCAA tournament in 2013 was also the last.

FGCU was knocked out of the Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament on Thursday by South Carolina Upstate. In a game that lived up to expectations, the Spartans won 63-62 only after the Eagles’ Bernard Thompson missed the final of three free throws after being fouled attempting a three-pointer with less than two seconds left.

The smooth-shooting Thompson and entertaining point guard Brett Comer were the last links to that FGCU team that shot up from a 15 seed in the 2013 tourney, running and dunking freely past heavily favored Georgetown and San Diego State to make the Sweet 16. As much as the Dunk City tag has endured since then, that team will always be the genuine article, the first and the best.
… Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Sunday, February 22, 2015

by - Published February 22, 2015 in The Morning Dish

The Big West Conference no longer includes UNLV, or even New Mexico State, Utah State or Fresno State as it once did. It’s no longer playing the third game on Big Monday. Once a regular top 10-12 conference and even considered better than the Pac-10 for a brief time in the 1980s, it has slipped far, far outside the mainstream media eye, and not without good reason.

None of the above are acceptable excuses, but they help explain why one of the truly special stories of this college basketball season has been so ignored. A doormat since it joined NCAA Division I in the early 2000s with not so much as a winning season, UC Davis is putting together what could end up being the finest turnaround in Division I history.

… Continue Reading

Scanning the Nation Notebook – February 20, 2015

by - Published February 20, 2015 in Columns

Some brief college basketball thoughts as we near the end of February and now March and tournament time is just around the corner:

One of nation’s best-kept secrets continues to be just how much of a treat it is to watch Iona offensively. The Gaels are so unselfish, so good at finding the open player, and so free to play offensively, and it’s a joy to watch. Tim Cluess has done an outstanding job at the school, which is poised for its third NCAA bid in the last four years. Despite missing defensive stopper and hustle player Isaiah Williams for the past 10 games, Iona has taken the lead in the MAAC again and at this point is the clear favorite to represent the league in the NCAA Tournament. David Laury and A.J. English are combining for 40 points per game, and freshman Schadrac Casimir is also averaging 15.4 points and is absolutely fearless. Iona has developed into a program that is annually among the nation’s leaders in scoring, three-pointers and assists, which should make it incredibly attractive to recruits.

… Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Friday, February 20, 2015

by - Published February 20, 2015 in The Morning Dish

Sometimes forgotten amidst all the “bubble” talk this time of year is a simple fact: if a team wins enough games, it doesn’t have to worry about being on the bubble.

One of the most intriguing teams of the bracketology season has been Purdue, with its year full of peaks and valleys. Rather than leaving the decision in the hands of others, though, the Boilermakers have been taking big steps towards going out and grabbing an NCAA bid, and they did so again Thursday night with a 67-63 win at Indiana to complete a season sweep of the rival Hoosiers.

Purdue came into Thursday night’s game with a huge size advantage and took every advantage of it. The Boilermakers hammered IU on the glass 38-21 and scored 40 points in the paint and in all 57 of their 67 points in the paint or from the foul line.
… Continue Reading

The Morning Dish – Sunday, February 8, 2015

by - Published February 8, 2015 in The Morning Dish

With the college basketball season building up to its crescendo next month, we should be focusing on the teams and players and how well they’re playing and performing. And indeed, there has been plenty of that, but sadly, we’ve also been distracted by a run of injuries and illness of late, and it continued on Saturday.

A thoroughly intriguing and busy February Saturday was marked by some of the following developments and happenings, which ranged from coast to coast:

… 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

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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.