The RTC Podcast: Feast Week Hangover Edition

Posted by rtmsf on December 3rd, 2013

Here’s hoping everyone out there in College Basketball Nation had a tryptophantastic Feast Week of hoops, hops and holiday cheer (please, take the keyboard away from us now). With so much great action around the western hemisphere last week, the RTC Podcast crew (hosted by Shane Connolly (@sconnolly114)) had a lot to catch up on this week. We think we did our best, as you can see below with the long laundry list of topics that we tried to cover.

Dan Dakich Joins Us on This Week's RTC Podcast

ESPN Analyst Dan Dakich Joins Us on This Week’s RTC Podcast

We also welcomed ESPN analyst Dan Dakich to the Rush the Takes segment of the show this week, as he gave us some takes on Feast Week as well as some of the upcoming Big Ten/ACC Challenge match-ups set to tip off later tonight (he’ll be in Syracuse for the Orange and Hoosiers). The rundown is below if you’d like to skip around to the most interesting parts. Make sure to add the RTC Podcast to your iTunes lineup so that you’ll automatically upload it on your listening device after we record. And feel free to contact us through Twitter or email — we’re listening.

  • 0:00-4:10 – UConn Beats Florida/Feast Week Excitement
  • 4:10-5:41 – Villanova wins the Battle 4 Atlantis
  • 5:41-6:42 – Arizona Downs Duke At the Garden
  • 6:42-7:46 – Syracuse Validates Their Rank in Maui
  • 7:46-8:35 – Wichita State Wins Pulls Some Quality Under The Radar Wins
  • 8:35-9:42 – Memphis Gets Revenge
  • 9:42-10:31 – Dayton Makes a Statement in Maui
  • 10:31-11:21 – UMass Still Getting Love For Early Tournament Win
  • 11:21-12:35 – San Diego State: The Only Winner in a Messy Wooden Legacy
  • 12:35-14:05 – Creighton Lets Down After Good Start In Anaheim
  • 14:05-15:11 – Marquette Still Can’t Score
  • 15:11-16:41 – Arizona State Goes From Good to Bad to Worse
  • 16:41-17:44 – Oklahoma State’s Flaws Finally Show
  • 17:44-18:47 – Gonzaga’s Missed Opportunity in Maui
  • 18:47-20:39 – Kansas and Andrew Wiggins Backlash Part 2
  • 20:39-22:14 – Duke Can’t Get Their Statement Win
  • 22:14-32:27 – Rush The Takes With Dan Dakich
  • 32:27-34:18 – Memphis Wants Randy’s Respect
  • 34:18-36:47 – UNC????
  • 36:47-38:49 – Atmosphere In Early Games
  • 38:49-41:19 – Ranking Villanova After Their Great Week
  • 41:19-46:27 – Big 10/ACC Challenge Preview/Wrap
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Reviewing the Performance of ACC Teams in Feast Week: Part II

Posted by Brad Jenkins (@bradjenk) on December 3rd, 2013

Today we will review the final six early season tournaments involving ACC teams. To see the recap we did covering the first seven such events, click here. The ACC completed a successful Feast Week with two more championships giving the conference a total of five titles in 13 tournaments. This performance should give the ACC some momentum going into this week’s ACC/Big Ten Challenge. With another good week, perhaps the conference will overcome the negative impact from some of those bad early non-conference losses.

Syracuse Wins EA Maui Invitational for the Third Time. (Photo: mauiinvitational.com)

Syracuse Wins the EA Maui Invitational for the Third Time.
(Photo: mauiinvitational.com)

Syracuse became the second ACC newcomer to win an early-season tournament by beating #18 Baylor 74-67 in the finals of the EA Sports Maui Invitational on Wednesday night. That followed wins over Minnesota, 75-67, and California, 92-81. Senior C.J. Fair was named the tournament MVP while averaging 18 points for the three games and tallying 24 in the finals. Also impressive was freshman point guard Tyler Ennis, who scored 28 in the semifinals over Cal, and had an outstanding 18 to two assist-to-turnover ratio for the tournament. With the Orange’s third Maui championship along with Pittsburgh’s title in the Progressive Legends Classic, the new ACC schools are serving notice that they are ready to compete at the top of their new conference.

Duke did not fare as well in the other marquee Feast Week event, the NIT Season Tip-Off in New York’s Madison Square Garden. After beating Alabama 74-64 in Wednesday’s semifinals, the Blue Devils fell to #4 Arizona, 72-66, in Friday’s championship game. Coming into the week Duke’s defense had been struggling mightily and was the focus for improvement by Mike Kzyzewski. The Devils did look much better on that end of the court against good competition, but another glaring issue has not been resolved. Duke is still searching for production from its primary big man position – Josh Hairston and Amile Jefferson combined for only two points in a total of 69 minutes over the two games.

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Pac-12 Burning Question: What Are You Most Looking Forward To?

Posted by AMurawa on November 8th, 2012

We’re so close. Tomorrow around this time, we’ll all be looking at getting ready for opening night. Sure, there may not be a whole lot to look forward to this weekend involving Pac-12 teams, but it will be good just to see what some of these teams look like in the early going. And, of course, we’ve got plenty of things to look forward to this year around the conference. We kept it simple this week and gave our correspondents a chance to peer into the future.

“What are you most looking forward to in the upcoming Pac-12 season?”

Kevin Danna: November and December. Forget conference play, forget conference tournaments, forget the Big Dance. November and December are where conferences earn their keep — in the non-conference slate. These have been two months that have absolutely haunted the Pac-12 ever since the likes of James Harden, Jrue Holiday and Darren Collison skipped town. If the Pac is going to get “bac” to 2007-08 form, its constituents MUST take care of business in these two months. Since the theme of 2012-13 seems to be restoring respectability to the conference, November and December is by far the most intriguing time of the year. Everyone needs to do its part — can UCLA take down Georgetown and put up a worthy fight against Indiana? How will Stanford fare in the Bahamas and on the road at NC State and Northwestern? What about Cal — can the Golden Bears finally get a meaningful road non-conference win when they travel to Madison to take on the Badgers? Top to bottom, it will be very interesting to see how the Pac-12 fares against other leagues. A .500 record against ranked opponents and things are looking up; another 9-38 job against the RPI Top 50, and we’re looking at another two-bid league.

Adam Butler: The Seniors. It’s the same reason we all tuned in to Chipper Jones this year and why we urge our champions to go out on top. The college senior gets no such urging. He is not afforded the luxury of choice because time hath run its course. He must come to grips with his own mortality. This is when legacies are cemented and special things happen. Or hearts are broken. I’ll never forget Kyle Fogg’s tear through the second half of the Pac-12 season last year. He garnered two Player of the Week awards en route to willing the Wildcats to the Pac-12 championship game. They’d lose that game and Kyle Fogg would barely play another game; taking a meager five shots in a first round NIT loss. As for this season’s crop of seniors, I’m excited about what Jio Fontan can do for the Trojans. He’s a terrific story and a ball of heart who finds himself – a year removed from ACL reconstruction – with a newly talented roster and a chance at turning heads. Does that story sound familiar? It should because Abdul Gaddy is dealing with the same situation in Seattle. He’ll be doing it alongside another knee reconstruct and his co-captain, Scott Suggs. These are classic comeback tales I’ll follow from the edge of my seat. And while we’re talking about comebacks, how about Kevin Parrom? He lost grandma and mom and then was shot. Then his foot broke. I don’t care who your team is, you have to root for this kid. Also on his team is Solomon Hill who has developed into a leader and player to be feared. Hill will have the opportunity to cement himself as a Wildcat great, the beginning of the Miller era not unlike a Kerr or Elliott began the Olson era (way hyperbolic there and, frankly, no way Hill is in their league; although rings can do weird things, ask Frodo – wow full tangent). We of course can’t leave Mark Lyons, EJ Singler, Brock Motum (yes!), Joe Burton, Angus Brandt, Jason Washburn, Larry Drew II, and Carrick Felix off the list of must watch swan songs. These are the guys, the stories, that make the college game our favorite.

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Feasting on Feast Week

Posted by rtmsf on November 26th, 2008

John Stevens is a featured columnist for RTC.  His columns will appear on Tuesdays throughout the season.

Ah, Thanksgiving week.  As if ESPN’s 24-hour binge of college basketball last week wasn’t enough, here comes the oh-so-appropriately-named Feast Week, another avalanche of hoops awesomeness spread out over seven days that not only launches college basketball right back into the middle of the sports radar where it belongs, but also goes great with Thanksgiving leftovers, paid days off of work, as well as pizza and garlic bread (in case you’re sick of all that turkey by Saturday’s games).  Aside from the month of March, it doesn’t get much better than this for college hoops fans.  The daytime games, the intriguing match-ups…good God, who would want to brave the lines on Black Friday?  THIS is the way to kick off the holiday season.

Maui Turkey

Maui Turkey

The holiday tournaments are a great time to familiarize oneself with the big boys of the game – see UNC in Maui, Georgetown in the Old Spice Classic (why are these tournaments called ‘classics’ when they’re 2-3 years old?), and so forth – since some of them might be making their first appearances on national television.  I’ve always thought one of the best things about the holiday onslaught of games was the opportunity to find a team that wasn’t getting much hype and, if they give one of the highly-ranked teams a game or even pull off an upset, follow them throughout the season and maybe use them in March when I’m doing way too much bracket-filling analysis, if there is such a thing.  I mean, we all know about Carolina and Oklahoma and Michigan State.  Who will we see that bears watching in these Thanksgiving tournaments that we haven’t been hearing a lot about?  Here, in my opinion, are a couple of squads to keep an eye on not just over this holiday weekend but also to see how they mature over the course of the season: Read the rest of this entry »

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