Tuesday, August 14, 2007

What is this, 1995?

Penny and Shaq are going to be playing together for a title contender in Florida? I guess Penny's coming back with the Heat, and Wade's on board with it (although having a chance to get a competent point guard would make anyone get on board).

Evidently, NBA comebacks are all the rage. Charles Oakley and Allan Houston are making noises about doing it, and even Reggie Miller is reportedly entertaining the idea of a comeback with Boston.

Evidently, everyone's big on PAC-10 basketball next year. And I think it will be a good league, but I also suspect it's getting considerably over-hyped. USC as a final four team? Puh-lease. They return 1 starter- 3 rotation players total, and while Tim Floyd has captured a very good recruiting class, I think that OJ Mayo's going to end up a lot more like Felipe Lopez than Mike Conley. And while Davon Jefferson could equal Daequan Cook, there's no Greg Oden here. This is not the new Ohio State.

In fact, in a decent conference, after losing 4 starters from a club that had 12 losses last season, I see USC as a bubble team, and if I had to put money on it, I'd put it on the side of them not making the Big Dance next March. I'd guess Arizona beats out USC and Washington for the fifth and final PAC-10 spot in the NCAA's.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Lazy Summer days

At least, that's what I hope is in store for me after a busy summer school/work schedule. But on to Sports!

IU Soccer is not only rated #8 in the nation, but also has the #2 ranked recruiting class. Hopefully, a couple of the Star frosh forwards can give the Hoosiers someone who can finish their chances, something that's been a little weak in the past couple of years, and probably the only thing separating this club from other championship-caliber clubs.

The basketball recruits, #2 in the nation, have been in action on a barnstorming tour. The competition isn't tight, but the recruits do look good. Especially good to see is Jamarcus Ellis' passing ability and handles. He looks like a good second or third option at point, but he's also a terror on the glass. Combine him with an eligible Eli Holman, a DeAndre Thomas that's rounding into shape, and underrated Brandon McGee and Jordan Crawford, as well as a healed Lance Stemler (who, when healthy, deserves a starting spot) and then throw in Eric Gordon and a DJ White who was the US's best player at the Pan Am Games. There's certainly a roster with final-four level talent, and whatever you want to say about Sampson's post-season record, he has been to the Final Four before. I think the key is going to be Armon Bassett.

According to DJ, Armon is emerging in confidence and leadership, but he's still going to be young and playing a new position. Armon's problems in the five-game stretch where he took over point had nothing to do with a lack of skill, only with the predictable over-dribbling, and over-penetrating without creating. Hopefully, the offseason will give Armon a chance to learn how run an offense, because if run correctly, next year's Hoosier offense could be even better than last year's conference-topper.

Football training's started, and best of luck to the Hoosiers, but I honestly don't pay much attention to football. Outside of "Waterboy." Man, I love that movie.