Photo courtesy of zimbio.com. With the arrival of Mark Lyons (pictured above), the Arizona Wildcats are not only a favorite to win the Pac-12, but they are also a contender to make a deep run in March.
By Josh Kramer
Now I already know what you all are thinking. Who isn’t already keeping an eye on the Wildcats when it comes to college basketball? Calipari’s “Traveling All- Stars” have appeared in two consecutive Final Fours and of course cut down the nets in April. I am not talking about Lexington’s Wildcats though. I am referring to the Arizona Wildcats.
So the Pac-12 this past season in terms of hoops was an utter embarrassment. The Washington Huskies took home the dubious honor of becoming the first team in the modern era of the NCAA tournament to win a power-conference regular-season championship and not receive an at-large bid. Well that was the past. The Pac-12 will be far stronger during the 2012/2013 season in large part due to to two familiar faces: UCLA and Arizona. Today though, I am focused on Lute Olson’s former employer.
After a disappointing season in which they lost in the opening round of the NIT, the expectations are once again high in Tucson. First of all the Wildcats are led by one of the best coaches in America that is still flying under the radar, Sean Miller. Miller is another coach that was produced from the coaching gold mine that is Xavier University. This guy did a remarkable job in leading the Wildcats to the Elite Eight in 2011 and helping mold Derrick Williams into a lottery pick. Things looked bleak for Arizona though with the transfer of point guard Josiah Turner. In actuality, things just got a whole lot better.
I am not sure Arizona knows what they are getting in former Xavier star Mark Lyons. Continue reading
Posted in NCAA Basketball
Tagged Arizona Wildcats, Derrick Williams, Josiah Turner, Kentucky Wildcats, Lute Olson, Mark Lyons, MoMo Jones, Nick Johnson, PAC 12, Sean Miller, Solomon Hill, Tu Holloway, UCLA Bruins, Washington Huskies, Xavier Musketeers
Photo courtesy of zimbio.com. Kemba Walker (pictured above) was the face of the 2011 NCAA Tournament. Who will be the face of the 2012 version of March Madness?
By Josh Kramer
Two and a half months later and “Throwback Saturdays” are still going strong. Welcome to edition ten of our weekly throwback day. What was happening on March 24, 2011? How about on March 24, 2010? I have a gut feeling that March Madness was discussed in some facet. Let’s take a look back and see what the major happenings were and how accurate I was with my analysis.
One year ago..
Sweet 16: Day 1 Predictions
Here is a snippet..
Connecticut vs San Diego State: Can you say Kemba? UConn has won 7 straight and are a perfect 10 and 0 in tournament play on the year heading into tomorrow’s showdown with a very talented and higher seeded San Diego Aztecs team. Now I realize that most of the national media has been grilling the Big East. I mean who wouldn’t. The conference began the tourney with 11 teams and only 2 still remain as we begin the Sweet 16. Let me state though, both of the teams still standing went 9 and 9 in conference play. Name me another team that is still standing in this bracket that went 500 in conference play. I will do one even better. Name me a team that did not finish in the top 4 of their conference that is still alive. But back to the topic at hand. San Diego State is also on a hot streak of their own having won 7 consecutive games. 43, 25, and 30 sums it up for me though when looking at this matchup (Jimmer’s point totals vs SDSU this year). Though the Aztecs play very solid defense and also have a very well-rounded scoring attack, they have failed to slow down teams with elite scorers all year. Good luck slowing down Kemba. At least one Big East team will find their way into the Elite Eight. And it will be the UConn Huskies as they gut out 3 point victory behind the Kemba Show.
BYU vs Florida: On paper, this game appears to favor the Cougars. They put up over 80 points a game. They have the edge on the boards. And I could go on. But not so fast. BYU has not been the same since the dismissal of starting center Brandon Davies for breaking University rules. Well this will be the first NCAA Tournament game where this vacancy in the paint really hurts. It will also be the first game in the tournament where BYU plays a team seeded higher than 11th. The Gators are very deep and talented, and will be the loan SEC team to nab a spot in the Elite Eight. The Jimmer Show has to end at some point. Plus Bobby Knight laid out how you stop Jimmer on SportsCenter. You better believe that Florida Coach Billy Donovan took notes on what the legend said. I am going to stick with my original pick in this one as well. Gators by 2 in a thriller (To finish reading this post, click this link). Continue reading
Posted in Miscellaneous
Tagged Arizona Wildcats, Big East, Billy Donovan, Bob Huggins, Bobby Knight, Brad Stevens, Brandon Davies, Butler Bulldogs, BYU Cougars, Cincinnati Bearcats, Connecticut Huskies, Darryl Bryant, Derrick Williams, Duke Blue Devils, Florida Gators, Jimmer Fredette, Joe Mazzulla, John Calipari, John Wall, Kemba Walker, Kentucky Wildcats, Kenyon Martin, NCAA Basketball, San Diego State Aztecs, Washington Huskies, West Virginia Mountaineers, Wisconin Badgers
Photo courtesy of BleacherReport.com. Kyrie Irving (pictured above) has lived up to the hype thus far in Cleveland.
By Josh Kramer
6-26-2003. 7-8-2010. 6-23-2011. Three days that will forever define the history of an NBA franchise. So you are probably sitting there wondering why I would list out these three dates. Well a renaissance of sorts is occurring in the often sports deprived city of Cleveland. And these are the three key dates that tell the story. Continue reading
Posted in NBA
Tagged Byron Scott, Chris Paul, Cleveland Cavaliers, Dan Gilbert, Derrick Williams, Duke Blue Devils, Jason Kidd, Kyle Singler, Kyrie Irving, Lebron James, Magic Johnson, Mark Price, NBA, Nolan Smith
I fully expect a thriller in the West Regional Final matchup between Arizona and Connecticut later today. But the X-Factor, and reason why the Huskies will win is the phenomenal play as of late by UConn super freshman, Jeremy Lamb (pictured above).
So my bracket has finally exploded over the past 2 nights. I was doing pretty well through the first weekend. But with 2 of my Final Four teams going down(Wisconsin, Ohio State), I am now in the same boat as the majority of America. I guess I can thank the Big Ten for ruining my bracket. Either way, it has been an unbelievable tournament with phenomenal finishes thus far. Last night’s late games were 2 of the best games I have seen all year. Continue reading
Posted in NCAA Basketball
Tagged Alex Oriakhi, Alex Tyus, Arizona Wildcats, Big East, Big Ten, Brad Stevens, Chandler Parsons, DeAndre Liggins, Derrick Williams, Erving Walker, Final Four, Florida State Seminoles, Jeremy Lamb, John Calipari, Josh Harrellson, Kemba Walker, Kenny Boynton, Kentucky Wildcats, Lamont Jones, March Madness, NCAA Tournament, Ohio State Buckeyes, SEC, UConn Huskies, VCU Rams, Vernon Macklin, Wisconsin Badgers
I expect the clock to strike Midnight tomorrow night for the Jimmer Show.
The madness resumes tomorrow evening with 4 big time games. And it cannot come soon enough. Out of the 8 teams that play tomorrow, I correctly picked 6 of them in my bracket. Plus all 4 of the teams I predicted to move on to the Elite Eight in my bracket are still in tact. Here is a closer look into each of tomorrow’s matchups. Continue reading
Posted in NCAA Basketball
Tagged Arizona, Big East, Big Ten, Billy Donovan, Bo Ryan, Bobby Knight, Brad Stevens, Brandon Davies, Butler Bulldogs, BYU, Connecticut, Derrick Williams, Duke, Elight Eight, Florida, Isiah Thomas, Jimmer Fredette, Kemba Walker, March Madness, Michigan Wolverines, NCAA Basketball, Nolan Smith, Old Dominion, Pittsburgh, San Diego State, Sean Miller, SEC, Shelvin Mack, Sweet 16, Washington Huskies, Wisconsin Badgers