Two ESPN college basketball experts join the podcast. Mark Adams, who provides color commentary for the biggest midmajor games across the country, talks about Wichita State and other small conference programs to watch as the NCAA Tournament approaches. Writer John Gasaway, whose appearance starts at the 11:45 mark, talks about the analytics revolution in college hoops and what stats matter most when assessing the top teams.
There are many kinds of tattoos that will age well: symbols like shamrocks or musical notes; a date to commemorate a loved one’s passing; butterflies and swirls. There are just as many that are fine initially but could easily become regrettable, like a girlfriend’s name. Sports-themed tattoos are no different. A team logo is probably harmless if you’re a fan; not so much if you’re the team’s coach.
Here’s a scary thought: Anthony Davis, one of the top players in the NBA, would be a college senior this season. If players were forced to stay in school for four years, what would this season look like? Taking into account transfers (but not future injuries) and acknowledging that many of these players would have chosen other schools, here is a potential Final Four.
Steve and I talk about the final “meaningless” rankings: How in the heck is Florida State No. 4? Which teams are still alive for a playoff spot? How will championship week play out? The podcast is packed with everything you’ll want to know before this weekend’s games. If you mention the show on Twitter or Facebook, or send me a question or comment via email, you’ll get a special shoutout on the next podcast.
I also want to share a couple of college basketball stories I’ve written. One is a feature on Manhattan coach Steve Masiello, which was published in the latest issue of Basketball Times. You probably remember his name from the résumé scandal last spring. I spoke to Masiello, his current and former players, several of the school’s administrators, and others outside of the program who are familiar with the situation to get an idea of how Manhattan went about taking him back and what it means for the school. The other story is much shorter, though it deals with tall players: Kentucky’s basketball team, which may be the tallest in college hoops history and can match up with any NBA team. It appeared in The Wall Street Journal last week.
You can find most all of my freelance work on my website. As always, thanks so much for reading. Without you, I’d simply be a diarist.
Steve and I recap Saturday’s big games, including Mississippi State’s first loss, Melvin Gordon’s huge day (and pro potential), and the effectiveness of icing the kicker. Smokey, Tennessee’s mascot, is also discussed.
Tomorrow, be on the lookout for a college basketball podcast in which my guests and I discuss last night’s Champions Classic and make our predictions for the season. It should be a fun and informative listen. Speaking of college hoops, I wrote a story yesterday for CBS Local on Kentucky’s chances of an undefeated season and whether they could beat an NBA team. My sources include coaches who have worked at both the college and pro levels.
Every Monday I write a recap of the previous weekend’s college basketball action for the CBS Charlotte website. You can find links to this content on the freelance page of my website. This week’s article can be found by clicking the following link:
Here are some observations that didn’t make it into the CBS column:
N.C State hands Duke its first loss
“Unbelievable! Did you see that?!” Dick Vitale utters those phrases all the time while calling a basketball game, but on Saturday he used them after spotting someone in a wheelchair among the mass of fans storming the court after North Carolina State upset Duke. “My heart goes out, I hope he’s OK,” Vitale added.
Continue reading College Hoops Recap: Duke and Michigan Lose
With just two more wins, the Kentucky Wildcats will be national champions and debated as one of the greatest college basketball teams of all-time. One loss, however, one lousy performance against a hot-shooting team, and Kentucky’s season will be considered a disappointment. And I’m perfectly OK with that.
It’s not entirely fair, but that’s the world we live in. November tournaments in Maui and New York are fun; regular season games are intense; conference tournaments are meaningful. But college basketball seasons come down to three weeks in March. This is a credit to the design of the Tournament and how great it is, though many worry it highlights the dwindling importance of the rest of the season.
Continue reading March Madness Means Everything