Posted by mlemaire on November 5th, 2012
- The impending departures of Notre Dame, Syracuse, and Pittsburgh has caused a ripple effect across college basketball for programs and conferences alike, and one of the supposed benefactors is the Atlantic 10, who now fancies itself as a national player on the college basketball scene thanks to recent NCAA Tournament success and tremendous program depth. The league boldly proclaimed its aspirations this weekend, announcing a deal with the Barclays Center to host its conference tournament during the same week the Big East is holding its tournament across the bridge. Dick Weiss is right, “basketball gluttons” are the real winners here as there will be a lot of excellent basketball games being played in close proximity to each other that week. As for whether the Big East should be worried, it is far too early to tell. I don’t think the Atlantic 10 is going to overtake it on brand recognition with this move alone, but they are letting their new neighbors know that they are ready to make some noise.
- Overcoming adversity? Check. Rave reviews about a player’s work ethic and perseverance? Check. Stories about how said player is in the best shape of his life and ready to lead his team to greatness? Check. This story about Cincinnati’s Sean Kilpatrick by Yahoo!’s Jeff Eisenberg has everything you want and expect from a preseason story — a good read and helps explain Kilpatrick’s rise (read: reformed shooting stroke). I am just trying to help manage people’s expectations. Kilpatrick will be the story for the Bearcats now that Yancy Gates has graduated and last season’s leading scorer will likely be one of the conference’s best players this season. The story may seem like something you have read 100 times before, but that’s because people like reading about hard-working players who overcome adversity, and that is exactly what Kilpatrick represents.
- This weekend played host to another slew of exhibition games across the league so why not round up some of the completely inconsequential action since no one of note seems to have been injured. UConn came back strong yesterday after struggling in its first exhibition game, cruising past UMass-Lowell and offering a glimpse of just how lethal its backcourt can be, albeit against a very weak opponent. Jim Boeheim and his Syracuse club rolled past Bloomsburg yesterday as well, behind an excellent all-around effort from senior guard Brandon Triche. Villanova clung to a victory over Carleton, 65-59, leaving coach Jay Wright to say some faux-positive things he can’t possibly believe about his team at this point. And St. John’s beat Sonoma State easily, although the far more interesting storyline is that there are four players in the program who are still waiting to see what their role on the team will be this season.
- Awesome read from the sports staff at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, who ran down their top 10 favorite basketball memories from Pittsburgh‘s time in the Big East. They don’t skimp on their recollections and the stories are fun to read. I don’t want to spoil too much of the goodness so I will let them take most of it away. If you are a Pitt fan, I will just say that these stories and memories should give you goosebumps. Of course, it could also make you start to miss the conference that they are about to leave too.
- The good college basketball bloggers over at CBSSports.com did the thankless job of putting together the most comprehensive injury report of 325 of the 345 college basketball teams in the country. There are no surprises in the Big East section and the most noteworthy insight from the whole list from a Big East perspective is that the conference as a whole is relatively healthy compared to some of the other big conferences. There have already been a few season-ending injuries, but for the most part, the conference programs are in pretty good shape as we prep for the start of the season.