Season X

137 entries (1-100 shown)

Epilogue, The Tenth: Finisterre

Thinking over the last decade, two key dates come to mind. August 23, 2004: a dry, mild Monday evening after a hot afternoon. I'm sitting outside Wellington Station, the MBTA Orange Line stop in Medford, just north of Boston.

The End

'Obviously, you don't know much about adventures.'                                                         -...

A Brief History of Flight

It had to be Dayton. A joyous start to our first NCAA tournament gave way to a brutal, wrenching weekend of mid-major losses. The magnificent Shockers were upset in a championship-level struggle; the first round victors from the Atlantic Sun and the Southland and the Summit and the Ivy couldn't quite maintain...

Amor Fati, Dayton

"People insist on calling it luck." - Mike McDermott, Rounders BUFFALO, N.Y. - Back in the olden times, before the Ice Age of 2014 froze all the lakes and killed off all the North American large mammals, the Mastodons of IPFW wandered into Dayton, Ohio for the season opener on Nov....

Peaks and Valleys

BUFFALO, N.Y. - The actual thrill of the roller coaster only lasts maybe 10 seconds, and that's if you're on one of those state-of-the-art, reach-to-the-sky models in the massive amusement park you had to drive two hours to get to, and wait in line another 90 minutes for once you got there. But you deal with...

Picking and Choosing Outrage

"Seal up the mouth of outrage for a while; Till we can clear these ambiguities." - Prince, Romeo and Juliet DAYTON, Ohio - It's about a length of the court walk downhill from the University of Dayton Arena hospitality room to the court. And, if you're there for...

Final NCAA Preview, Presented by Petty

DAYTON, Ohio - You've read the previews. You've seen everyone's predictions. You've seen 65 hours of coverage breaking down matchups, 64 of which were likely completely useless to you. It's likely with our time on this planet coming to a rapid close that our maniacal experiment toward complete clairvoyance is...

Fighting Elephants, Real and Imagined

"You go on. You set one foot in front or the other, and if a thin voice cries out somewhere behind you, you pretend not to hear and keep going." - Geraldine Brooks STONY BROOK, N.Y. - Steve Pikiell was the epitome of calm Saturday morning/afternoon as his Stony Brook...

Atlantic One to The One

"I'm trying to free your mind, Neo. But I can only show you the door. You're the one that has to walk through it." - Morpheus BROOKLYN, N.Y. - Under cover of darkness Thursday night, some 340 years or so after the British did the same, the Atlantic Coast Conference...

Tournament Central - 3/16

Many congratulations from a busy Saturday. Happy for all of our friends in Albany, Tulsa, NC Central, Weber State, Stephen F. Austin, Cal Poly, Western Michigan, Texas Southern and New Mexico State.  Just two champions today before selection Sunday.  Sun BeltGames like this are a lot of fun because...

Tournament Central - 3/15

CHAMPIONSHIP SATURDAY Y'ALL Conference USA #2 Tulsa vs. #1 Louisiana Tech - 11:30 - CBS American EastThe semi-finals in this tournament felt like a month ago, but it is finally time for the finals. The Scooby-Doos are looking for their second-straight tournament bid and fourth since 2006. Stony Brook has never...

Deja Vu All Over

'Right now I'm having amnesia and deja vu at the same time.'                                                        -...

Tournament Central - 3/14

Tons of semi-finals today to set up championship Saturday. Get ready Atlantic 8Some juicy games in Brooklyn today including the renewal of the Richmond rivalry a few hours north. UMass and George Washington as a night cap doesn't suck either. Games are all on NBCSports if you are looking for some daytime hoops....

Tournament Central - 3/13

Nobody loved you in the preseason American, but I guess that's why we play out the season anyway. Great job and congratulations. No championships tonight as the big networks are too busy airing the early rounds of the bloated power conferences. ATLANTIC 12George Mason got bounced by Fordham in the opening opening...

Tournament Central - 3/12

So much for the home court advantage. Congrats are in order to Milwaukee and Mount St. Mary's who both won two straight road games to claim their titles. Also get ready for another case of #BisonFever coming to you next week.  Take a deep breath as there is only one title game tonight and a bunch of very...

Organic MAAC Rivalry

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. - Organic has become another of the growing list of overused buzzwords in our society, particularly in a world where organic America chickens eat imported feed from China, and you can eat organic pancakes for breakfast. It's also extremely difficult to make anything related to major college...

Thirty-Four Shining Moments

Maryland-Baltimore County, 2008: Joining Division I in 1986, the Retrievers were more peripatetic than most: they played as an independent, then in the ECC, the Big South and the Northeast before entering America East in 2003. Five years later, James Madison transfer Ray Barbosa and his former high school...

Tournament Central - 3/11

Monday night saw three more teams crowned champions. Congrats are in order for Delaware, Manhattan and Wofford. Hearts go out to Iona, Western Carolina and especially William & Mary who were so tantalizingly close to a first ever NCAA Tournament bid only to have the Blue Hens steal it away in the final moments....

The Place To Be

"Find a place inside where there's joy, and the joy will blot out the pain." - Joseph Campbell NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Back when potential colleges were trying to ascertain whether I was worthy to spend a small fortune to grace the presence of its classrooms two decades...

Tournament Central - 3/10

Shout out to Coastal Carolina for their first NCAA Tournament bid since 1995 and Mercer for getting revenge on FGCU and getting to the dance for the first time since 1985. Also congrats to Wichita State, 34-0 in the regular season is pretty cool too, I guess. Two more bids go out on Monday night. CAAIn keeping...

Tournament Central - 3/9

Congratulations to Eastern Kentucky who came out of the gates firing and then did just enough to hold off Belmont to win the OVC crown. The Colonels return to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2007. Three more titles and bids to give away today as Championship Fortnight rolls on.  A-FunWith apologies...

Coming to Terms With The End

WORCESTER, Mass. - The white tape around Mackey McKnight's right hand acted as a white flag. The flimsy, glorified piece of cloth had helped support McKnight through thick and mostly thin through this - his senior season - but with one final pass that didn't quite find its mark, all McKnight could do was look...

Tournament Central - 3/8

Congrats to Harvard for earning the first NCAA Tournament bid. One more bid to give out today in the Ohio Valley. Ohio ValleyChampionship Saturday in the OVC. Belmont has only lost twice in 2014, but one of those loses was at the hands of Eastern Kentucky. As you might expect with a Rick Byrd coached team, Belmont...

Tournament Central - 3/7

Friday night has big shoes to fill as the A-Fun was bananas last night with Florida Gulf Coast surviving against a very game ETSU squad and Mercer needing two OT's to advance past Upstate setting up a championship rematch.  On to today: Big SouthAfter a day off it is on to the quarterfinals in the Big South....

Tournament Central - 3/6

A-FunIt was all chalk in the quarterfinals of the Atlantic Sun (although ETSU needing two overtimes to take out Lipscomb brought the drama.) Semifinals are available on ESPN3 as ETSU and USC Upstate try and stop the seemingly inevitable Florida Gulf Coast-Mercer trilogy. #4 ETSU at #1 FGCU 6:30 p.m.#3 USC Upstate...

Tournament Central - 3/5

Three more conference tournaments begin on Wednesday and the Patriot League picks up in the quarterfinals. Big SouthThe top two teams in each division take a bye so High Point and VMI from the north and Coastal Carolina and UNC Asheville from the south don't get started until Friday. Those four are the presumptive...

Goodbye Palestra

PHILADELPHIA - The basketball and time seemed to be moving at inverse proportions, a scene usually reserved for film and not real-life. About the moment that gravity started to take hold and start the ball downward, the crowd assembled began to rise, and above the shuffling and murmur of excitement, an electronic...

MMBOW #15 - Jerelle Benimon - Towson

The Colonial regular season is all wrapped up and while Towson didn't win the league (Delaware did at 14-2, The Tigers finished 13-3), perhaps a Mid-Major Baller of the Week title will serve as a nice consolation prize before the conference tournament.  Senior Forward Jerrelle Benimon did his part to help...

Relative Success

WEST POINT, N.Y. - The 10-minute 'cooling off' period after games before coaches have to meet the media works better for some than it does others. For Zach Spiker? Not so much. After a somewhat brutal 71-70 loss to Boston University Wednesday night, Spiker came in to the makeshift media room at Christl Arena...

Freeman Williams's Very Good Week

In the entire history of NCAA basketball, only one guy has scored more points than Freeman Williams. That other guy, you know: Pistol Pete Maravich, college ball's all-time leading scorer, a legend at every level of the game.  Freeman Williams, though? The name doesn't ring the kind of bells you'd expect...

G!O!T!N! 2/27 - Sacramento State at Weber State

Thursday night might just be the biggest night of the season so far with big games everywhere. There is Chattanooga-Western Carolina and Elon-Wofford in the Southern Conference, the highly anticipated Vermont-Stony Brook rematch in the American East, Middle Tennessee-Louisiana Tech fighting it out for the Conference...

Vince Lombardi to Dick Bennett

GREEN BAY, Wis. - When you play, quite literally, in the shadow of Lambeau Field, eventually everything is going to trace back to Vince Lombardi. And so, let the record show, that Lombardi's first head coaching job upon graduating from Fordham was not on the gridiron, but on the basketball court, where he led...

Shocker Legacy

CHICAGO - When Julius Caesar was involved in his prolonged campaign to defeat the previously unconquerable Gauls more than two millennia ago, the Roman press had its doubts that he could go unbeaten. Caesar ran through the first few skirmishes, was about to go head-on with Vercingetorix, and perhaps the fiercest...

MMBOW #14 - Chris Udofia, Denver

The great Mid-Majority fan Paul Hampson (@ThisLeadenPaul) dropped a tweet to the @midmajority this afternoon suggesting Chris Udofia as Mid-Major Baller of the Week and after some research it has been rubber stamped. Udofia becomes the 14th MMBOW for the #TMMX season. Udofia's best game of the week came on Thursday...

Cornbread, Al and Lee (Part Two)

(See Tuesday's Part One to learn how we got here.) At the end of the 1969-70 season, Marquette coach Al McGuire turned down the team's invitation to the NCAA Tournament, protesting the selection committee's choice to send the Warriors to the Midwest regional in Fort Worth, rather than the Mideast bracket in nearby...

Just a Great University

LORMAN, Miss. - Alcorn State and Arkansas-Pine Bluff battled in front of me, but my eyes and attention were strangely drawn to my left and the hands of Je-Kel Smith. Smith's bespectacled eyes never left the court, but yet the hands were a constant whirl of motion, Vishnu-esqe even. At every stoppage in play,...

G!O!T!N! 2/20 - Quinnipiac at Canisius

In a lot of leagues a 12-4 conference record would be enough to win you a league title, but in the marathon 20 game MAAC schedule 12-4 is only good enough for a tie for third place with four games to go. Qunnipiac and Canisius are both looking to make the final push to catch Iona (14-2) and Manhattan (13-4) and...

G!O!T!N! 2/19 - American at Boston

There is a battle for the soul of the former Last Amateur Conference tonight between two teams that weren't in the conference when John Feinstein wrote his seminal mid-major book.  American isn't really that new to the Patriot League, they joined in 2001 and have been the conference representative in the...

Cornbread, Al and Lee (Part One)

The University of North Carolina at Charlotte didn't play a single Division I basketball game until Al McGuire's second year of coaching at Marquette.  The school itself wasn't much older; it was founded in 1946, and saved from closure in 1949 by the city of Charlotte. The city operated it as a two-year...

Slow and Steady

MACOMB, Ill. - After sitting through dozens of press conferences that mostly consist of cliches and spin, the honesty from Western Illinois coach Jim Molinari was quite ironic, coming from a man whose first chosen profession was practicing law. Then again, Molinari isn't exactly one for following the crowd...

MMBOW #14 - Doug McDermott - Creighton

Let's go ahead and call this a Mid-Major Baller of the Week and Mid-Major career achievement award. As you may have heard Doug McDermott passed Mid-Major legend Larry Bird on the career points list and is now 13th in NCAA history with 2,863 points. This is the part of the post where you might say Creighton is...

Loss of Control

BRIDGEPORT, Conn. - There are many times in life that I wish I was more adept at math. Numbers? I'm pretty good with those. But once you start throwing in variables and algorithms and derivatives, my brain rebels and wanders off into other pursuits. Had I been able to maintain a better relationship with the...

G!O!T!N! 2/13 - UCSB at Long Beach

For those of you out on the east coast you can get your late night college hoops munchies on with a big game in the Big West. California-Santa Barbara travels to Long Beach with a shot at leaping to the top of the table on the line. The man for the Gauchos is former MMBOW Alan Williams. Big Sauce leads the team...

Mo Bubble, Mo Problems

AMHERST, Mass. - It's been 16 years since UMass has heard its name called on Selection Sunday in March, which is quite amazing on first glance, until you realize that John Calipari had foraged the place to lead the Minutemen to the 1996 Final Four and took most of his booty with him to the NBA. Bruiser Flint...

The Brothers Jones

BOSTON - There are currently seven brother head coach combinations in Division I men's basketball, a record high. Two you could probably identify without much prompting: Scott and Bryce Drew (Baylor and Valparaiso, respectively) come from a noble coaching bloodline, as do Danny and Bobby Hurley (Rhode Island...

G!O!T!N! 2/12 - Coastal Carolina at VMI

A few weeks ago we profiled the Big South for a GOTN and mentioned that the no conference race is as wide open. Much to the delight of those who like a close race, nothing has changed 20 some odd days later. Seven of the 12 teams in the conference sit between 7-3 or 6-4. Any team from that group can win the league...

February Fatigue

BRIDGEPORT, Conn. - It's February, and no matter how hard I try, fatigue has started to set in on this college basketball season. You can only fib to yourself so much, you know. There are so many other things I could be doing on a Friday night than watching Monmouth and Fairfield, perhaps the two lowest teams...

MMBOW #13 - Davon Usher, Delaware

Out in the Colonial Delaware is running away from the pack. The Blue Hens are 10-0 in the CAA and in the midst of a 12-game winning streak. Those numbers almost came crashing to a halt last Wednesday, but Delaware guard Davon Usher came to the rescue. For a great week and one of the better single game performances...

G!O!T!N! - 2/7 Brown at Harvard

Friday nights in Hoops Nation are generally sparse with the exception of the Ivy, but the Ancient 8 have a good matchup to keep an eye on when you get tired of the Winter Olympic opening ceremonies. #2BidIvy is dead and was a pipe dream anyway so now its time to focus on the longest tournament in college hoops,...

The Dons, the Streak and the Best Ever

Here in the Mid-Majority, our definitions of success are more malleable than the usual. They're shaped according to the team and the time, and with ten seasons' understanding of the uphill nature of our battles.  For our Towsons and Centenarys and New Jersey Techs, success has sometimes meant finding a single...

G!O!T!N! - 2/5 Wichita State at Indiana State

Forgive me for being repetitive, but as you may have already heard this is a big week for Wichita State. The Shockers are 23-0 and looking down the stretch of the Missouri Valley Conference slate. This has led the national media to quickly take sides: Will the Shockers be undefeated come March? Will they lose...

The Question

HARRISONBURG, Va. - I sat in front of William & Mary coach Tony Shaver at in his postgame press conference Sunday afternoon and debated with my conscience whether to ask him 'The question'. As an interloper who doesn't see specific teams on a regular basis, you don't have the opportunity to get to know coaches...

From Philly to Farmville

FARMVILLE, Va. - If you're really bobbing and weaving traffic, you can reach Farmville in six hours from north Philadelphia. But from a cultural standpoint? You might need to call NASA. Tristan Carey was used to being hard to find, but when you score 30 points per game and find yourself on a statistical list...

MMBOW #12 - Maurice Ndour, Ohio

For this weeks installment in the Mid-Major Baller of the Week we take time to honor a player who stepped up his game in a week that his team so desperately needed it. Ohio forward Maurice Ndour put together his best game and week of the season in Bobcat wins over Central Michigan and Toledo and for that is the...

That Was Fun

RICHMOND, Va. - About half an hour before tip-off at the Siegel Center Saturday, the Internet connection on my oversized laptop was spotty at best. For the low, low price I paid for it, the HP Vision has served its purpose well this season, but on press row, it can be a bit ostentatious, forcing me to crane...

Hail to the Bus Driver

SMITHFIELD, R.I. - St. Francis Brooklyn is one of five teams (along with Northwestern, Army, William and Mary, and The Citadel) to have played continuously in Division I since there was such a designation (1948) and never taste the glory of the NCAA Tournament. With Quinnipiac (and Monmouth) having exited the...

G!O!T!N! 1/30 - Bryant at Robert Morris

For the last three years Long Island has been the king of the NEC. They have three straight league tournament titles and won the two out of the last three regular season titles. That changes this year as the Blackbirds are well out of the race as we close in on the midpoint of league play. The top two contenders...

G!O!T!N! 1/29 - Delaware at William & Mary

The Colonial is like many of the great conferences that following the realignment storm of the last few years doesn't quite resemble the league when it was at its peak. There is still great basketball being played out in the CAA and on Wednesday night the top two teams in the league standings meet for a rematch....

Sorrentine From The Parking Lot

PROVIDENCE, R.I. - T.J. Sorrentine still holds the Vermont record for #superhoops with 354, but if you're like most of America, you probably remember No. 348 most of all. March 18, 2005. A day that will live in Green Mountain lore. Vermont goes toe-to-toe with Syracuse in the NCAA Tournament, and eventually...

MMBOW #11 Jacob Parker, Stephen F. Austin

Out in the Southland, Stephen F. Austin is threatening to run away and hide from the rest of the competition. The Lumberjacks have won 15 straight games, last falling before Thanksgiving. Not only is SFA undefeated in conference play at 7-0, they have won the last five league games all away from home. With the...

Our Biological Clock is Ticking

HACKENSACK, N.J. - Marisa Tomei turns 50 this year. Stating that fact is not meant to denigrate Ms. Tomei in any way, shape, or form, but just to illustrate that, indeed, our biological clocks do not stop ticking for any force of nature or personal crisis. You may know that the Mid-Majority biological clock...

The Crisis

'These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country, but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman.' - Thomas Paine, The Crisis BRONX, N.Y. - You can call Paul Hewitt a lot...

Donlon and Donlon

CLEVELAND - Bill Donlon's eyes scanned left to right as they had done thousands of times before in his coaching career. When Cleveland State would begin to run something he recognized - which was almost every possession - from hours of poring over film, he would rise up in his seat and alert his players as to...

Penn vs. Princeton: One Year, Two Rivals, Three Games

Here in the frozen Midwest, temperatures have spent more time below zero than above over the last two weeks; the rare respites on the thermometer usually just mean the clear, cold skies are replaced by another coating of slick, wet snow. Across much of Hoops Nation,the story is the same: Alberta Clippers, nor'easters,...

G!O!T!N! 1/24 - Vermont at Stony Brook

Friday night isn't traditionally a strong night in Hoops Nation, but it doesn't get much better than the American East heavyweight battle on ESPNU tonight. Both Vermont and Stony Brook sit at a perfect 5-0 in the conference standings and are heads and shoulders ahead of the rest of the league in the early running. ...

G!O!T!N! 1/23 - Florida Gulf Coast at Mercer

You might remember the last time Florida Gulf Coast and Mercer met. It was the Atlantic Sun title game in Macon, Georgia. Mercer was hosting the conference tournament and had already won the regular season championship. The Bears were undefeated at home and presumed to be on their way to the NCAA Tournament for...

G!O!T!N! 1/22 Radford at Campbell

Conference season is still young, but there might not be a more wide open race than the one going on in the Big South. Four teams sit with a 3-1 record and another six are just a game back at 2-2 (only poor Longwood and Presbyterian are off the pace at 0-4). On Wednesday night all four 3-1 teams will play each...

G!O!T!N 1/21 - Milwaukee at Wright State

Out in the Horizon League things look like this at the moment: Green Bay and a battle royale for second place. That leads to a good game on Tuesday night as Milwaukee and Wright State battle for that spot right behind the Phoenix. Even though GB has beaten both of these teams already, every place is important...

Look Behind The Curtain

AKRON, Ohio - It's hard for a person with any modicum of intelligence and independent thought not to be cynical in the modern world. So many people with so many public voices, each one seemingly louder than the next. So much ignorance, lack of understanding, and an inability to even move a millimeter toward...

MMBOW #10 - Mitch Bruneel, Utah Valley

As we have talked about in this space before, TMM has always been a celebration of the wonderful basketball that goes unnoticed by most. With that in mind it is only fitting to give out the occasional Mid-Major Baller of the Week to a player that isn't necessarily a star on his own team labors in the smallest...

G!O!T!W! - Indiana State at Wichita State

Plenty of great games available this weekend, but the Game! Of! The! Weekend! happens at Koch Arena where Indiana State visits Wichita State on Saturday afternoon. Indiana State is having an incredible season, but #TreeFever has been somewhat overshadowed by the dominance of Wichita State in the conference. The...

Eastasia vs. Oceania vs. Eurasia

BOSTON - College of Charleston coach Doug Wojcik looked at the assembled media at Northeastern's Matthews Arena and couldn't stop sneezing. 'I caught a cold since I've come up here. I blame you guys,' he said. 'All these big city media.' He was joking. I think. It was actually a mild Boston January night...

G!O!T!N! 1/16 - Northern Colorado at Montana State

It seems like it has been decades since a school not named Montana or Weber State was considered a front runner for the Big Sky championship. There will be a big game for the early Big Sky standings in Montana tonight, but it wont be in Missoula, but rather Bozeman when Northern Colorado visits Montana State for...

Different Vermont Beat

"The gods of the valley are not the gods of the hills, and you shall understand it." - Ethan Allen BURLINGTON, Vt. - Brian Voelkel stared at the stuffed basketball we know and love so well with wonder. 'You want me to hold this while you take a picture?...

G!O!T!N! 1/15 - Buffalo at Toledo

Midweek MACtion is not just reserved for American-style football as Buffalo travels to Toledo for Wednesday's Game! Of! The! Night! Bobby Hurley is in his first season as Buffalo head coach and has the Bulls playing some excellent defense. The Bulls have the second best 3 point defense, allowing 26.2 percent to...

G!O!T!N! 1/14 - VCU at George Washington

Richmond, Virginia and Washington, D.C.  The two cities can add a chapter to their historic rivalry with a Game! Of! The! Night! between VCU and George Washington on Tuesday night.  VCU, you may have heard, is pretty good at defense. Havoc was the hot slogan last year and despite the Rams receiving little...

When The Gold Dust Twins Met the Globetrotters

As Ray pointed out last week, Season X has finally bid adieu to one of the Mid-Majority's betes noires: the guarantee game, in which one of our own earns a much-needed paycheck (and a likely loss) for visiting a power-conference gym.  These guarantee games -- less charitably and more accurately 'body-bag...

MMBOW #9 Karvel Anderson, Robert Morris

One of the best things about conference play starting on this side of hoops nation is that it allows teams to check the guarantee games and losses and start a new season. A season where the odds are more even and a bid to the NCAA Tournament still in view as long as conference season goes well. This weeks Mid-Major...

Yes, Your Basketball Team is Good

STORRS, Conn. - It's become an annual tradition at this time of year where I work to bring back college freshmen to talk to the current seniors to give them some advice on what and what not to expect when they embark on their collegiate lives in a few short months. There was some irony in this year's panel...

Home in Natchitoches

NATCHITOCHES, La. - You want culture shock? Forget the food or the dialect or even the customs, try being a person from the conglomerate known as the Northeast trying to escape Natchitoches with somewhere to be. The final buzzer sounded on Northwestern State's comfortable Southland Conference victory over...

G!O!T!N! 1/9 - Manhattan at Quinnipiac

It's a big early conference showdown in the MAAC in the Game of the Night. Quietly Manhattan is putting together one of the best seasons in Hoops Nation, coming into the game winners of eight straight and holding a 11-2 overall record, including a perfect 4-0 mark in conference. The Jaspers have a couple of real...

G!O!T!N! 1/7- Saint Louis at Rhode Island

Conference season means a new start and some more consistent Game! Of! The! Nights! Let's get he party started with some A-10 action with Saint Louis visiting Rhode Island.  The Billikens were pretty dang good last year and (BREAKING!) are pretty good this year. SLU is 13-2 with close losses to Wisconsin...

MMBOW #8: Willis Hall, College of Charleston

Conference season is right around the corner, but as the final throws of the preseason finish up Willis Hall of College of Charleston put together one of the best performances of the season. For that and a stellar all-around week Hall is the eighth Mid-Major Baller of the Week for the TMMX season.  Over the...

Body Bag For Body-bag Games

WACO, Texas - Just because you know how a story is going to end doesn't necessarily make it without merit. Heck, one of my highlights every summer is when 'Shakespeare in the Park' takes over a few blocks from my house, although a modern-type version of 'Julius Caesar' didn't really come off this past year....

Conference Confusion

DENVER - The picture pretty much says it all. Or, more appropriately, it would had it included some kind of trophy from the University of Denver's current league: the Summit. We mostly just chuckled back at the turn of the century when Denver, transitioning to Division I, joined the Sun Belt, but perhaps that...

Didn't They Ramble

In the early years of NCAA basketball, Our Game had its unquestioned capital in New York City. The finest players and smartest coaches came up through the five boroughs, and an NIT victory at Madison Square Garden was the pinnacle of the college sport. Capitals attract power, of course, and that means money and...

Loyola Marymount Past and Present

LOS ANGELES - History is one of the most studied disciplines we have, its themes and stories permeate into almost all of life. The lessons it tries to impart by recycling stories through eras that seemingly have nothing in common is so ingrained in our consciousness that it has (somewhat ironically) become a...

Drive Away to Malibu

MALIBU, Calif. - I stood with Pepperdine coach Marty Wilson in his office after an impressive victory over San Diego in the West Coast Conference opener Saturday afternoon. It was no different than the dozens of offices I've visited already this season, kind of bland and cramped, actually, but that comes with...

MMBOW #7: Anthony Drmic, Boise State

Boise State is an interesting case study for the definition of midmajor. The Broncos no longer play in a TMM conference, but the basketball team has long been the forgotten son. While the school and football team looked for big TV money in the Big East the basketball team was shopped around many ill-fitting conferences....

Big West Siege

LOS ANGELES - The siege has gone out of fashion as a military tactic these days,  with technology and air power what it is. Vicksburg, Yorktown, all the way back to Caesar and Gaul, the siege may not be flashy on The Military Channel, but damned if wasn't effective for some of the better known names in...

Leaving Las Vegas

LAS VEGAS - It may be a mile or so off The Strip and doesn't have the  name power of behemoths like a Caesar's Palace or an MGM Grand, but the Orleans Hotel and Casino has the same idea in mind: Create a resort that could pass for its own city, so that once they have you inside, there's really no reason...

West Coast Bias

LAS VEGAS - Quick, who is the all-time leader in assists at Santa Clara? If you live on the west coast and haven't completely immersed yourself in Pac-12 basketball, you might have gotten the answer correct, and if you did, Bally congratulates you. He'd like to give you a prize, but well, money is tight this...

MMBOW #6: Aaric Murray, Texas Southern

There is always a unique story about how a player arrives at a school. Sometimes it's the hometown team they grew up playing for, sometimes it's the only school that wanted them and sometimes it's a long complicated tale. That's the case with Texas Southern center Aaric Murray who spent two years at La Salle...

Not understanding how sportz work

LOGAN, Utah - Kyle Boswell's favorite athlete is Reggie Miller, therefore it was fitting that the Cal-Santa Barbara senior turned in a Miller-esque performance Friday night against Utah State, magically transforming a cacophony of 10,000 screaming fans at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum into silent disbelief with...

After The Flood

From 1941-43, Fulks put together a 13.2 PPG scoring average -- pedestrian-sounding now, but incredible for a forward in that era. After an overtime loss in the NAIA Final Four, though, Fulks's Murray State career came to an end; with World War II raging, Fulks joined the Marines. He'd see plenty of basketball...

Cleaning = Winning

LOGAN, Utah - All there was left for Bob Williams to do was grab his jacket and starting walking toward Stew Morrill. It wasn't the first time Williams has had to make that walk in the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum, he has been the head coach at UC-Santa Barbara for 16 seasons now (to be fair, he did win in his last...

The Son Doesn't Have To Rise

BROOKLYN, N.Y. - There is nothing remarkable about Lamar head coach Pat Knight. Yes, he dresses a little more casually than most of his counterparts and he did have an epic rant a couple of years back that made its way through a news cycle or two, however, what really made it newsworthy in the first place was...

And So It Goes

BROOKLYN, N.Y. - Kurt Vonnegut's Tralfamadorians appeared in several of his stories, but most prominently in Slaughterhouse Five, where war veteran Billy Pilgrim invents them to deal with what we know today at Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. What's most interesting about the Tralfamadorians is their ability...

MMBOW #5: Brad Waldow, Saint Mary's College

In the 10 years of this website Saint Mary's has been one of the proudest carriers of the mid-major banner.  Moraga has been home to Omar Samhan, Patty Mills, Matthew Dellavedova and the beautiful game. That was all supposed to change this year. SMC was smacked with the ever ominous and vague 'failure...

Isn't NJIT So Cute?

NEWARK, N.J. - At first, being called cute can be kind of flattering. I mean, first of all, people are actually noticing you exist is nice. Some of them actually run with the cool crowd, and to even have your name mentioned there, especially in a positive light, well that's the road to the best parties, isn't...

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The Woods

Once you give over your entire identity to a sport, the lines that separate the game and real life start to disappear. Welcome to The Woods, a new 22-essay anthology from TMM's Season 16.