Sunday, September 30, 2007

NCAA college t-shirts just $7 each on Sunday!

Thanks to college football perhaps, NCAA apparel sales are coming in on a daily basis at Amazon. Today (Sunday) the special is t-shirts! Here is the list of all 35 colleges whose t-shirts are on sale for $7 each. Free shipping if the total order is over $25. If you are under $25, you can go over $25 by simply getting a gift certificate and emailing it to yourself (or someone else). Some examples:

Preparing for 2007-2008: Scouting the Jordan Classic

This was a fun game to watch. The defense did not get in the way of the offense, but it wasn't just that, it was good offense too! It was a highly entertaining game, and it was a close game too.

There was some naming confusion, there were two players named Chris Wright, and two of them with the last name Lucas. No relation.

The yellow/gold team had a dream-team perimeter with Derrick Rose, Eric Gordon and Corey Fisher. Wow! Rose once again had a solid game as a point guard but he was also able to be effective playing off the ball. Gordon showed off defense which Kelvin Sampson will put to good use at Oklahoma Indiana and he used his strength on offense as well. Being a co-point guard with Rose, Fisher did play mostly under control.

The Georgetown guard duo had a good game, both Chris Wright and Austin Freeman played to their strengths. Jimmy Dykes went crazy here saying that Chris Wright will be the best point guard of this class. He said it, he is on record, not me! Freeman, who looks like he is in his 30s is going to be a solid Big East guard, he is basketball savvy, skilled and mature and has a good size. If Jeff Green had stayed...

Given the offensive nature of the game, and how well they played, most of the players had their good moments. Jeff Robinson (going to Memphis) had a scoring spree inside and out, and that is what's going to get him playing time for the Tigers. Because Calipari has six guards/wings but only 120 minutes. And that's not counting Jeff Robinson. So he has to earn/grab the PT by making outside shots and doing what the existing Tigers cannot do. That means that he will likely play some four in order to accomodate PT for all the guards/wings. Robinson is way too good to redshirt.

Kyle Singler showed his versatility and talent, unlike the Roundball classic. Despite him committing to Duke, Singler is going to be a very solid player with a good chance of making good money in the NBA. Providing he ejects quickly and does not get drained by Coach Dracula K.

Patrick Patterson had yet another signature PP game, making his presence felt on defense, and on the boards and using his anticipation/sense of the game to be effective.

The Florida wings, Chandler Parsons and Nick not-a-point-guard Calathes showed promise but they also have a lot of work to do. They will become part of the foundation for Billy Donovan's next big team. And he will be there to see them through since he can't go back to the NBA in the next few years after his Orlando Tragic ejection.

Kosta "I'm not Oden" Koufos showed some promise as well, some of the offense is there, but he needs more work as well.

The two Big East versatile forwards had good games as well, Durell Summers and Donta Greene. They should both be contributors right away on both sides of the floor.

There were three power-players that did well: Gary Johnson, who unfortunately for him and Texas-Austin he won't play this season showed why he could have had a PJ Tucker-like impact on the team. A strong power-player. But if all goes well, he may return to action in 2008-2009. Blake Griffin had a ballerina on steroids pirouette (sp?) moment in the paint and that was very effective in scoring and clearing out the paint! Chris Wright had a couple of spectacular dunks and he is going to be showcasing them on a nightly basis with Jon Stewart's Dayton Flyers. It looks like Ohio schools are on a major uptick, with Matta's Ohio State, Xavier, and now Dayton getting a top 50 recruit to stay home.

The two Lucas guards had an okay game, but perhaps I didn't pay too much attention to them. Bayless showed what his potential range could be, an effective scoring lead guard, or someone who hasn't met a shot he didn't like. Arizona is where he (and we) will find out.

Last but not least, the starting point guard Jeffrey Jordan. On a totally unrelated note, he is Michael Jordan's son. Which is why he was selected for the game and why he got the starting job. And that's why Rose and Fisher were put on the same team, to make room for Jeffrey to get the starting nod. Conspiracy theory or not? You decide. The ESPN guys of course were singing Jeffrey's praises. When was the last time an invited walk-on made an all-star game? Answer that!

Perhaps a bit prophetic, one fan had signs inviting "Pat and Jai come to UK". That fans wish partially came true as Pat(rick) Patterson and Jai Lucas both committed later on to Billy Gillispie and Kentucky. (Thanks for the correction!)

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Preparing for 2007-08: Scouting the Roundball Classic

The Roundball classic was not as easy to scout as the Nike Hoops Summit because of the format and the way it was broadcast (smaller viewable area, many on-camera interviews interrupting the game). So I wasn't able to gather as much as I did from the Hoops Summit.

Some of the players that had a decent game or impressed me or exceeded expectations):

  • OJ Mayo: He had a good game, but towards the end of the game he transformed. He tried to single-handedly make a comeback but his teammates, more speficially highly overrate Taylor King failed him. Mayo hit some clutch shots and even had a Jordanesque move (in the house that Judden built)
  • DeAndre Jordan: He is going to be a factor in the paint. With the proper training and basketball growth, he has NBA 1st rounder written all over him. Texas A&M and Mark "AASAA" Turgeon will be thrilled they were able to hold on to him despite the Gillispie exodus.
  • Corey Fisher: Watch out Big East, the four guard line-up is coming back! He had a very good game, dishing left and right, and slicing and dicing into the paint. He already has good rapport (I don't know what this word means but I was told to use it) with Nova teammate Corey Stokes.
  • Kevin Love: The big fundamental. He is an impact player in the paint, but his passing is also something special. Assuming Ben Howland allows him to outlet pass that far ahead :)
  • Johnnie Flynn: He had another solid game, Cuse fans should be thrilled!
  • The talent is there: Anthony Randolph, Evan Turner, James Harden: Talented and versatile players they had their impact on the game.
  • RAW potential: Alexis Wangmeme (going to Texas) and local Nyal Koshwal (to DePaul). They are still learning the game, but they have a lot of upside.
  • Chris Allen: Izzo is going to be glad he got this guy. A 6'4" versatile wing is just what the doctor ordered for Izzo State.
  • Also good games: JJ Hickson of NC State and Justin Burell of St Johns.

    The Big O (Overrated)
  • Taylor King was by far the most overrated and undeserving player to be included. Usually the only way a player like Taylor King would be included in such games is if he was a local player, and there was no other local player in the all-star roster. But we know why Taylor King was included - two reasons: Duke and the R word (race).
  • The Big O twice as Greg Ostertag Cole Aldrich showed that he is more of a top 100 player than a top 50 player. The three all-star games usually gather the top 50 players, 24 at McDonalds and an additional 12 each at Jordan and Roundball, since players are only allowed to play two out of three if they want to retain their NCAA eligibility (who came up with that rule?). No one has said no to the McDonalds game in favor of the Roundball and Jordan - providing they were eligible and selected for the McCholesterol Game.

    The remaining players had okay games, or did not get as much air time or I did not pay as much attention to them: Rico Pickett, Alex Legion, Darquavis Tucker, LaceDarius Dunn, Gani Lawal, and Demetri McCamey.

    Next up, the Jordan Classic. Stay tuned!

  • NCAA College wind jackets for $12 today only!

    It looks like Amazon is having an NCAA gear week, today's one day sale item (gold box) is officially licensed NCAA wind jackets from Campus Yard with college logos. Twenty five colleges are participating in this promototion. The complete list of the 25 colleges participating in this promotion.

    Friday, September 28, 2007

    Download MP3s legally for 89 cents each!

    Sports fans are great music fans as well (what a lame justification for posting this!) so you will be thrilled to find out that the Amazon MP3 store is now up and running. You will no longer have to deal with DRM-locked music files *cough* iTunes *cough*. Amazon sells actual mp3 files, so you buy them legally, and play them legally and move them to anywhere you want legally! Finally some common sense! The DRM infestation has grown out of control so it's nice to see a more practical and realistic approach! Here are the Top 100 MP3s at Amazon.

    A nice write-up on this at Terry White's critically acclaimed Tech Blog.

    I am glad I am this blog's moderator, because this post is off-topic :-)

    Scandalous: Gonzaga's Jeremy Pargo not a preseason Cousy Award nominee!

    This is scandalous! Jeremy Pargo of Gonzaga is not in the long list of forty (40) preseason Cousy Award candidates, yet Kyle "420" McAlarney of Notre Dame, Greg Paulass of Duke, UConn's AJ Price, and medical unknown Lanny Smith of Houston among others are nominated! Clearly the selection cmte is drinking MAJOR BCS koolaid. Perhaps Vitale and Digger Phelps have a guaranteed-player-in vote, which would explain the Domer and the Dookie! Some of the other iffy selections include Syracuse's Eric Devendork and Washington State Kyle Weaver. Kyle Weaver a point guard? Yes, Kyle Weaver is a nice and versatile and unique and game changing player but a top 40 point guard? Kyle Weaver, really, really, really ????????

    More iffy selections: Florida State's combo guard Toney Douglas, and Missouri's Stefhon Hannah. Jamont Gordon fits the Kyle Weaver category, a pure point guard though???

    The list includes 36 D1 point guards, two from D2 and two from D3. Of the 36 Division 1 point guards, only five come from outside BCS schools: Derrick Rose, Lanny Smith, Duke Slayer Eric Maynor, Davidson's Jason Richards and Bradley's Jim Les Daniel Ruffin Sr. BCS Koolaid, table of 31 please!

    The list of preseason candidates is on page 34 of the Athlon preview magazine (which I reviewed) as a paid advertisement from The Hartford and the Bob Cousy award. The Cousy award website doesn't seem to be updated yet.

    Preparing for 2007-08: Scouting the Nike Hoops Summit

    In the first of a multipart series, we will be taking a look at some games from last year that are relevant to the 2007-2008 season, starting with the four spring all-star games.

    First up, the 2007 Nike Hoops Summit. Team USA had a ten man roster. The coach used Team A (starters) and Team B (other 5), until the middle of the 3rd quarter where foul trouble and game situations forced him to mix and match.

    The starting five were the "designer" names. Derrick Rose had a good game, he did what was necessary for the team to win, he had some nice passes (and a couple that didn't click). He also showed that he can be effective off the ball. Rose is certainly a candidate to be the Jason Kidd of his generation. Calipari may get a ring because of Rose. He is solid!

    He shared point guard duties with OJ Mayo who played mostly under control and had a few impressive plays, including a couple of nice passes. He also made a couple of iffy decisions but that's part of the game. But he's got the talent and hints of Jordanesqueness.

    Dookie Kyle Singler had a quiet game but he didn't try to force things. He is better than he played at the Hoop Summit. Later on he got into foul trouble which took him out of the game.

    The starting power forward was Michael Beasley who showed flashes of his potential at the start of the game, and later in the game when Kevin Love went out and opened up things in the paint. He is clearly an offensive weapon. He also had an impressive block.

    Kevin Love was the starting center and he played to his strengths, toughness and Wes Unseldesque passing. He got clobbered a couple of times but he casually shook it off. Which is why he is a great match for Ben Howland. He did have a funny comment when he called Ben Howland's offense "impressive". Ben Howland is probably the only coach who uses a blazing fast point guard like Darren Collison to run on the break with a primary purpose not to score, but to wear down the defense.

    The most impressive player in terms of exceeding expectations in my opinion was Syracuse bound Johnnie Flynn who had a solid game and played like a solid point guard. Move over Devendork, there's a true point guard in town :-) Flynn gave the opposing team's point guards major headaches on defense as he pressured and hounded them.

    The most efficient player of the game was Patrick Patterson, which is why I think he is better than his rating. Even though very few plays were run for him, he managed to put points on the board, and grab rebounds, and found himself in many plays on both sides of the court because of effort and anticipation.

    The most inefficient player was Nolan Smith, he gave the ball a headache, he wasted time and possessions without actually going anywhere. It is no surprise he was pulled from the game, and he (and fellow Dookie Singler) returned to the game after the game was decided for good in late 4th quarter. He seemes destined to play out of position at Duke as Coach Ratface K said during the interview he can play all three guard/wing positions.

    Donte Greene is no Carmello (then again very few players are), but he is going to be a very productive player at Syracuse. He had an impressive play from the perimeter with a couple of crossovers and broken ankles.

    The last player on the team was scoring guard Jerryd Bayless who played as the name suggests. He did not force things since he was playing with an all-star cast. He will put points on the board at Arizona for sure!

    From Team World, Nigeria 7'1" big man Solomon Alabi (not Alibi) will be playing for Leonard Hamilton at Florida State. And while the U word is overused (upside), he sure does have a lot of upside if he develops more basketball skills. Initially he will be a factor rebounding and shot-blocking, as he has athletic skills, strength and wingspan - as long as he does not get in foul trouble in the ACC.

    Croatian shooter Ugrinoski was apparently offered a scholarship by Tim Floyd and USC, but he went for the dollars (or euros) of professional ball in Europe. The other player that had some flashes (which I am assuming is why the NBA was interested) was Finnish point guard Petteri Koponen. But he will not be going/coming to college hoops. Israeli tough forward Omri Casspi had a burst in the 2nd quarter after he got dunked on, while the two french forwards (Batum and Ajinca) shows a lot of promise as well. But I'll leave all that for the NBA and NBA Draft bloggers :)

    Next up: The Roundball Classic.

    Thursday, September 27, 2007

    Hot sale: NCAA Polo Shirts for $15 (Thursday only!)

    After yesterday's hot sale where a lot of team sweatshirts sold out, Amazon comes back with a similar offer, this time polo shirts with the NCAA logos on them from the Old Varsity Brand for just $15 each. Free shipping and handling if the total order is over $25. You better get yours early, they are going to sell out again! List of 29 colleges with $15 polo shirts.

    Here are some of the 29 colleges:

    Midnight Blogging Madness!

  • Inspired by Thad Matta's recent half a million salary boost, Beyond The Arc looks at coaches and money. Earlier this month, Beyond the Arc recapped the unpredictable world of Duquesne basketball
  • A Sea of Blue (ASoB) looks at the unanswered questions of the 2007-08 Kentucky team.
  • Jeff Goodman has some good news for Washington Huskies fans. Goodman also has a write-up on Bruce Pearl and Tennessee. "I'm not a top 10 coach" said Bruce Pearl. He also looks at Florida State and their experienced back court. More bad news for NC State as another player goes down with injury this time. Meanwhile Lo Romar is thrilled with the progress of one of his benchwarmer big men, and Wright State is discussed.
  • He's back! Yocohoops is making a comeback - expect more as we get closer to midnight madness and the new season.
  • Mike DeCourcy asks "What can Brown do for you?". He is not discussing UPS, but the prospects of Xavier for 07-08, and the upside of the very promising forward Derrick Brown.
  • Marquette fans, check out the top 10 wiki at Cracked Sidewalks
  • News from Jim Calhoun's favorite conference here.
  • Visit TAD to find out what deserving award the Cameron K Zombies Crazies got.
  • As the Gonzaga World Turns at La Rev with lots of updates, including a video game tournament and a comment on Fran Fraschilla seeing "five NBA players" in the Zags roster. On a totally unrelated note, FF thanks Heytvelt for the mushrooms ;-)
  • College Hoops Haven Heaven looks at the worst 15 college mascots. As you may recall, they recently revealed their best 15 mascots, which was featured at DeadSpin.
  • March to Madness has a moment of Zen.
  • Some great stories at Rush the Court discussing The Big Nasty, and Tommy Amaker saving ...Harvard.
  • Irish Trojan discusses yet another installment of Pat vs Geno (women's hoops rivarly).
  • The Duke of the Vols has been suspended indefinitely according to CBS Sportsline.
  • And while Big Nasty (Corliss Williamson) gets a new job, his teammate Corey Beck got shot!
  • The popular CHN Top 144 previews continue with more and more teams getting previewed.
  • Some of the top point guards were tutored by Steve Nash. The top 10 point guards of 2007-2008 according to Rivals!
  • The Rivals notebook looks at the Colonial Association, the Washington Huskies and Sidney Moncrief.
  • Making the Dance looks at conference success in the NCAA tournament during the last ten and twenty-five years.
  • Meanwhile, you can catch up with news from regional and local newspapers in one place, at Inside Hoops.
  • If that's not enough, check out the jam-packed Daily News Archives at CSTV! There's so much stuff there, it would fill up this post just mentioning it! For example, Washington State has announced its tv schedule.

  • Wednesday, September 26, 2007

    Blog update: Reorg of links complete!

    We interrupt the sweatshirt sale for a quick blog update :-) I have re-organized the college hoops links and broke them down into four categories:

  • College Hoops blogs from fans and superfans.
  • Big media sites and blogs such as ESPN, Fox Sports, CBS, TSN.
  • Coaching blogs, blogs that focus on coaching and/or Xs and Os.
  • Message Boards, aka forums.
  • If you have any recommendations, let me know via email or post a comment.

  • College hoodies with screen print logo $12 today only!

    Time to shop for the upcoming season! Amazon's one day gold box sale has something of interest to college sports fans and alumni everywhere. Sweatshirts with hoods with the school's logo on them! Okay, fine, I'll say it, they are "hoodies". They are $12 each, from the Old Varsity Brand, and free shipping if the total order is $25 or more. List of 29 college sweatshirts available. Here are some hoodies, starting with some in-conference rivalries. Update: Some are currently out of stock!

    NHL Center Ice Free Preview on Comcast for 10 days!

    Comcast Cable is offering a free preview of NHL Center Ice, from September 29, 2007 to October 9, 2007. During that time period, all available Center Ice games will be shown! This is obviously not college hoops, but we like free :)

    Sunday, September 23, 2007

    The Weekly Rewind Repor(t)

    The Oooops Files!
    I just discovered that during the format change to the new blogger template I accidentally dropped the first three college basketball links from the new list. One would think that I would have figured it out earlier, since one of them is my own Recruiting Wars blog! The other two were March Madness All Season and YocoHoops. So I added them back on (I saved the old template). And to make up for lost "air time", I have listed them here as well. And yes, in the next few days I will organize the links better, right now they are a long long long list.

    The Blogosphre Files

  • College Hoops Heaven looks at the best 15 mascots using a scientific ...method. Don't show this list to Stephen Colbert, it has BEARS!
  • A round-up of the latest news at Rush the Court. They also crunch the Jim O'Brien numbers. And more round-ups!. And USC taunts UCLA billboard style. There we find a link to a coaching blog discussing Xs and Os on Gonzaga's Flex Offense.
  • To paraphrase Vitale, give me Ammo and Batista, and you take the flex :-)
  • Lots of quick hitters at March to Madness featuring John Calipari, Al Skinner, and more!
  • SEC Hoops the Good, the Bad and the Dirty continues to crunch the SEC team schedules and predicts wins and losses too!
  • How about some football from The Sports Flow blog?
  • The Vance Walberg nation continues to expand. That's the place to be if you want to learn how to AASAA.
  • Dick Hoops Weiss puts on his E! hat and reports from the New York Hall of Fame dinner
  • A jam-packed Volume III of the March Madness All Season summer observations!
  • Gary Parrish opens his mailbag

    The Goodman files
  • Sad news for the Volunteers as one of the players loses a parent. Goodman also talks about seven foot prospect John Riek, yet another injury for Gillispie's wounded Wildcats, and the oranges are blooming in Syracuse, but you won't hear that from Boeheim :) Goodman continues to earn mid-major cred as he also spotlights yet another non-BCS team, this one is an ivy-major.
  • Goodman talks a virtual visit with Rollie Massimmino (yes, the Nova championship coach), and Bruce Weber hires his 3rd assistant to replace the Kentucky departing one.
  • Then Goodman takes a a look at the Arizona Wildcats. The Meerkats will be playing more man2man now that enforcer Kevin O'Neill is on board. Getting compliments on competitivenss from O'Neill bodes very well for freshman Jerryd Bayless. Continuing with the fair and balanced coverage, Goodman also looks at the new head coach at Illinois State.
  • Good news and bad news for Alabama fans as Ron Steele will take a medical redshirt. According to Goodman he looks forward to playing with his brother but more importantly being 100% ready in 2008-2009. And with the string of his injuries, this was a very Vulcan decision. Also featured is Hofstra's key players for the next season.

    Team Files
  • A Sea of Blue takes a long look at seven footer Jared Carter, his past, present and future. They also discuss Joe Crawford's injury
  • Thad Matta is locked up! Not behind bars, but behind columns of silver and gold as he gets extended until 2016 according to CBS Sportsline. The raise of half a million puts him just under $2.5 million. Thank you Greg Oden!
  • Meanwhile Matta's predecessor at Ohio State is collecting the same amount in a different kind of check. Jim O'Brien was awarded a $2.4 million settlement
  • Incoming freshman Clarence Holloway underwent open heart surgery according to CBS Sportsline. According to Pitino the surgery went fine. His condition was diagnosed just Friday. He will obviously sit out 2007-2008.
  • Gary Parrish's latest thoughtblog discusses North Carolina's Felton-Iman non-situation situation, Calipari's invasion of China, and his tour of the luxurious practice facilities at U of Championships (Florida/Gainsville). Also discussed are Ron Steele, Kentucky's Midnight Madness, Josh "shroom" Heytvelt, and the latest Buy One Coach Get One Player free blue light special.
  • Florida A&M finds a new coach
  • Ten years at Value City arena for Ohio State basketball
  • Gonzo finds an assistant according to the Zags blog
  • Meanwhile the Gonzaga Zags fans are waiting for their schedule to be announced. Terrance and Philip make a guest appearance even!
  • John Clay's Sidelines report has an audio interview on Arkansas and new head coach John P.

    The DeCourcy Files
  • As if Calipari didn't have enough market penetration, he is now expanding his sphere of influence to China. It's Derrick Rose this year, it will be Yao Rosun in five years :) And will everyone in China learn to AASAA under the leadership of John Calipari?
  • Big Brother grabs Raymond Felton and Roy Williams by the ear
  • DeCourcy takes a look at Izzo State
  • DeCourcy also looks at the past, present and future of Alabama's one man ER show Ron Steele

    The Congress Files
  • Former college and NBA head coach and tv talking head Dick Versace (not to be confused with the fashion designer I presume) will be running for a seat in the House in Central Illinois.

    The Police files
  • Pitt point guard LaVance Fields delivered a ...stunning performance
  • Gary Parrish chimes in by recommending a kerfew of sorts
  • The killer of USC guard Ryan Francis gets life
  • Meanwihle Auburn's Frank Tolbert gets in trouble with the law, but this one is more of a nickle dimer

  • Saturday, September 22, 2007

    Blog reformating and conversion completed!

    The blog has now been (finally) converted to the new blogger format! New features and functionality added:

  • List of Labels (aka Tags) are now posted in the blog, towards the bottom of the left column
  • You can now automatically see a list of all the posts made in the current month under Blog Archives in the left column.
  • Easier to find Contact Information (contact via email) in the left column.
  • Poll questions can now be added on the fly in the left collumn!
  • A newsfeed from Google on college basketball has been added in the left column
  • The book and magazine pictures that were oozing from the bottom of the left column have now been herded and are in a post of their own. This cleans up the look and speeds up loading a little bit.
  • Each post now has a link in its title name. This makes it easier for people to open individual posts or cut/paste the urls and post them on their blog/site/forum :-) (hint, hint!)
  • In the next few days I will organize the College Basketball Links better, breaking them down by topic. Right now they are a long winded list. If your blog or website, or your favorite blog/website are not listed, please let me know via comment or via email!
  • More refinements will be made in the next few days. But this was the big conversion, so I'm glad it's over :-) If you have any comments, feedback, etc, please let me know!
  • The weekly rewind post will be made on Sunday.

    Speaking of reformatting, I also reformatted/converted Recruiting Wars to the new blogger format. Because of the style and content of that blog I was able to use a new slick willy template

  • Blog reformatting coming this weekend!

    I have to do this now, before the new season starts! The blog will be reformatted this weekend. This will allow some new features such as poll questions, access to all the Labels (aka Tags), easier access to recent posts, and a more flexible design.

    If you have any suggestions, feedback or comments, leave them as a comment or send an email via the "Contact Via Email" link on the left column.

    A weekly rewind post will follow up after the restructuring. In the meantime, please feel free to checkout our detailed reviews of two 2007-2008 college hoops preview magazines by Athlon and Lindy's. Both of them are available for sale at the big bookstores and other places. More magazines may be reviewed later on, at the moment these are the only ones I have seen. Usually The Sporting News and others (SI, ESPN, USA Today, CBS Sportsline, etc) get published later on.

    Friday, September 21, 2007

    2007-2008 Lindy's College Basketball Preview Magazine Review

    And here we go, just days after we reviewed the Athlon preview magazine, we have the Lindy's college hoops preview magazine review. I picked it up at Borders Bookstores for the list price of $6.99, same price as last year.

    One quick note on Borders, they have the 2006-2007 version of the Sporting News preview magazine on the shelves, so be sure not to get the wrong year by mistake. But if you are looking for the 06-07 TSN version, you may find it there.

    For reference, this is my 2006-2007 Lindy's review. I am using a slightly different review format this year. Speaking of 06-07, every game of the 2007 NCAA Tournament is available on DVD, for around $20 to $25 per game at Amazon. And if you prefer a free online previews, check out our gigantic 2007-2008 preview links.

    One more thing, plan ahead for the season, what is the best way to record your favorite college basketball games?

    And now to the Lindy's magazine preview review! The cover says "Display until Dec 15", and list price is $6.99. The west coast bias edition features UCLA's Darren Collison, Brook Lopez and DeVon Hardin on the cover. The magazine is 210 pages long.

    It starts with a table of contents and a letter from the publisher, celebrating year #10 of Lindy's. The publisher is Lindy Davis, so now we know the Lindy in Lindy's :) There he mentions that the schedules will be published on their website on October 15 and you can also request a print edition. Because Athlon and Lindy's get published so early, they cannot have the finalized schedules in time for the printing process.

    General Interest Stories

  • Page counts mentioned do not include ads!
  • The 2007-2008 Top 25 is presented, with each team getting a short preview featuring "The Good", "The Bad" and "Our Call". They also include teams 26 to 40 with single-sentence previews. Nice feature and quick intro to the new season (five pages long). Also of note is that five mid-major conference teams are in their Top 25 (excluding Memphis). I won't reveal their #1, I don't want to be mauled by bears! I won't reveal their #2 I don't want to be in silence of the lambs! And I wouldn't volunteer to be eaten by a tiger so I won't reveal #3 and #4. This week I'm going to a bird watching seminar on cardinals, so I can't reveal #5 either!
  • An excellent six page featured called "Scoping the Nation" is jam-packed with interesting features, including The Return of Rick Majerus, One and Done college superstars, a tribute to Skip Prosser, a spotlight on some preseason games to watch, including the holiday tourneys and the conference challenges, top 10 freshman candidates to be one and done, list of coaching changes, top 10 one and done candidates of the 2008 class, ten candidates for stardom, top ten D1 transfers, top ten JuCos, top 10 shooters, top 10 defenders. They also rate the conferences from #1 to #31, and give us their Field of 65 predictions, along with their Sweet 16 ad Final Four. This is the most compact and concise six pages of preview I saw in a preview magazine so far!
  • A four page feature "Meet the New Boss" covers Billy Gillispie at Kentucky, Billy the Diva Donovan at Florida and Tubby Smith at the TimberGophers.
  • A two page feature on the search for the next Gonzaga, with some focus on the Missouri Valley
  • A two page feature on "Embracing Kelvin Sampson". I would have named it "Embracing Slugfest" :)
  • A two-page story by Frank Burlison on recruiting (players commiting earlier and earlier)
  • Top 25 players per position, one page devoted to each position! Nice!
  • Top 10 Backcourts (two pags) and top 10 Frontcourts (two pages)
  • Women's Coverage" Top 25 teams (4 pages), including the top 15 female players.
  • Back page: The 2007 NCAA tournament brackets, completed with scores and teams advancing. Nice touch!
  • Grade: A

  • Shop for your favorite colleges gear, dvds, books, apparel, toothbrushes, and more at Amazon

    Recruiting Coverage
  • A two-page story by Frank Burlison on recruiting (players commiting earlier and earlier, pages 32-33)
  • Recruiting coverage is provided by Rivals, at the back of the magazine
  • Top 25 Recruiting Classes of 2007 with analysis!
  • A half-page story by Justin Young of Rivals taking a post-summer look
  • A recap of the 2007 class with the top 50 players listed (1 page)
  • Top 100 players of the Classes of 2008 and top 100 of 2009 and top 10 of 2010.

    Conference Previews
  • A number of conferences, not just BCS conferences, get a two page conference preview. Yes two pages per conference. A half-page intro to the conference kicks things off. Lindy's includes a table of Good News/Bad News/Our call for each team, top 15 players, returning statistical leaders (scoring, rebounding, assists and 3 point shooting percentage). Also in the preview a detailed analysis of the incoming recruits within the conference (nice touch Lindys!), the superlatives (best player, rebounder, defender, etc), and Team Stats from 2006-2007 including FG%, FT%, 3PT FG%, and margins (rebounds, turnovers, points). This is the most comprehensive conference coverage.
  • Conferences receiving the two page previews: ACC, Atlantic 10, Big 10, Big 12, Big East, Conference USA, Missouri Valley, Mountain West, Pac-10, SEC, and WAC.
  • The remaining conferences receive 1/3rd of a page conference preview that includes top 10 players, superlatives (Best player, rebounder, etc) and predicted order of finish.
  • Props to Lindy's for giving some of the high mid-major conferences the same amount of space as they give the six BCS conferences!

    Did you know? Every 2007 NCAA tournament game is on DVD! at Amazon. Get yours know! A great way to scout teams for the upcoming season!

    Team Previews
  • Even bigger props to Lindy's for treating teams more equally. Basically the Top 40 teams get a full page preview, while the remaining teams from the BCS and the high mid-major conferences (mentioned above) receive half a page each. This is a more fair way to spread the love. In contrast, Athlon is blatantly pro-BCS.
  • The teams from the remaining conferences get half a column ina a page with three columns (1/6th of page), but the text is very compact, so they are squeezing in a long paragraph, starters and key reserves, newcomes, starters lost, 06-07 record, and the head coaches's overall record. Not bad for such a small amount of space. Better coverage than the equivalent Athlon.
  • The full page reviews of the Top 40 teams include a text preview, a picture, key players (sadly not a complete roster and no jersey numbers), key losses. Each player mentioned gets a one-liner description. They feature the coach's record, teams' 06-07 record, honors candidates (eg player of year, freshman of year), and a "Keep an eye out" paragraph on a player to watch. Another table has their team stats from 06-07.
  • The half page reviews (BCS and high mid-major teams outside the top 40) have the same features, but no picture, and obviously less text.

  • Rosters are not complete, they are just "key players"
  • No jersey numbers listed! Grrrr!
  • No schedules but that's to be expected since it is published so early. They will make them available online on October 15 and you can request a printed copy once they are available
  • USC is not in the Top 40!!! Hello Lindy's, OJ Mayo and Devon Jefferson are calling :-)

    Stand out features
  • Fair and balanced treatment of the Top 40 teams regardless of conference affiliation. In fact, five (+Memphis) of their top 25 teams come from mid-major conferences. No BCS koolaid served at Lindy's :)
  • More coverage of mid-major conferences and teams than any other magazine, especially the high mid-major conferences (A-10, C-USA, MVC, MWC, WAC). Although some other non-BCS conferences were downgraded in coverage compared to previous years (CAA, Big West, etc)
  • Two-page conference preview instead of the usual one page in other magazines. Included is recruiting analysis per conference.
  • Excellent six page ultra-compact and juicy "Scoping the Nation" article
  • Good Recruiting Coverage
  • Four pages of women's coverage

    Compared to Athlon's preview magazine
  • Lindy's has more mid-major coverage. Athlon drinks the BCS Koolaid
  • Lindy's not does have complete rosters or players jersey numbers. Athlon does, along with more detailed roster info.

    Did you know that every 2007 NCAA tournament game is available on DVD?. Get yours now! This is a subliminal message. You are not really reading this! ;-)

  • This is a nice preview magazine. It has very good general interest stories as mentioned above. Those features alone make it worth the price of admission. Recommended for the college basketball fan!
  • If you are a fan of a high mid-major conference or any other non-BCS conference, this magazine probably has the most non-BCS coverage. So grab it!
  • If this is the only preview magazine you are buying, and you want to look up the players while watching games on TV, beware, it does not have the players jersey numbers listed! Infact it does not even have complete rosters.

    Comments or Corrections?
    Please feel free to leave them as a comment or send me an email via the "Contact via Email" link in the left column of the blog.

    Get Ready for the 2007-2008 season!
  • Scout the teams by getting 2006-2007 NCAA tournaments on DVD! from Amazon.
  • Shop for your favorite college's gear, apparel, licensed products, books and DVDs at!
  • Also be sure to check out my Gigantic 2007-2008 online preview of links to online previews
  • Get historic and classic college basketball dvds from Amazon!
  • Sprawl on the couch and draw plays like a real coach!.
  • If you liked this review, and you want to see more magazines reviewed, please let me know!
  • If you are a publisher and you want your magazine to be mercilessly reviewed, please let me know

  • Tuesday, September 18, 2007

    2007-2008 Athlon College Basketball Preview Magazine Review

    Yes, the first preview magazines have been out for a couple of weeks. I picked up the Athlon Sports 2007-2008 preview from Borders Bookstores. Just like I did last year when I reviewed four of them, I'll be reviewing some of the 2007-2008 magazines, starting with the Athlon!

    For reference, this is my 2006-2007 Athlon review. I am using a different format this year. If you want to relive the 2006-2007 NCAA tournament, every game is available on DVD!. And if you prefer a free online previews, check out our gigantic 2007-2008 preview links.

    One more thing, plan ahead for the season, what is the best way to record your favorite college basketball games?

    And now I am putting on my magazine reviewer hat: Cover price is $6.99 and it says "Display until December 21, 2007" on the front cover. This is a price increase of $1 from last year! The one I got is the west coast bias edition with Stanford's Brook Lopez and Cal's DeVon Hardin. The magazine is 194 pages long and printed in quality glossy paper.

    It starts with an editorial from editor Mitchell Light, then the table of contents. An alphabetical team listing is available on page 11 so you can quickly look up any team.

    General Interest Stories

  • Ads are not included in the page counts below.
  • 10 things to watch in 2007-08 spotlights, you guessed it, ten things! Included are OJ Mayo, Helen of Troy of the Big Eleven (Eric Gordon), McKillop's Wildcats, Tubby Smith. (4 pages long)
  • Five pages of Hoops Madness, a pot pouri of tidbits and notes, including a Bob Knight quote, a list of 15 emerging college stars, Top 10 players in these four categories (Floor Leaders, Shooters, Slashers, Inside-Out, Post Men), the top 18 transfers, and a list offensively challegned players (they have more game starts than field goals made!).
  • A list of the coaching changes (page 23)
  • A list of the D1 Exempt holiday tournaments (page 27)
  • A three page feature on Young Coaches Stealing the Spotlight featuring among others Billy the Diva, Ben Howling Wolf, JT III, Mark "AASAA?" Turgeon, and Thad Matta.
  • A New Hope, a full page story spotlighting Billy Gillispe and Kentucky. When you are Kentucky, you get a full page to yourself to discuss the coaching change!
  • A long list of 2008 Bob Cousy Award candidates including two players from D2 and D3 each (Spoiler Alert: Greg Paula is included).
  • "The Fix", a two page look on Tulane's 80s scandalous past
  • Full page interviews with three players, Bama's Ron Steele, Huggins's Kansas State's Billy Walker, and Izzo's Drew Neitzel
  • Field of 65 predictions in cascading bracket style (2 pages). I won't reveal their final four, but the two teams they pick for the championships could easily make their own Lord of the Rings movies! Also projected is the post-season NIT field! NIT Love! NITology is picking up momentum!
  • Traditionally preview magazines feature their top 25 or top 40 teams with a capsulte for each team, but not this magazine!
  • Three five-player All American Teams, with a ...psycho predicted as POY (player of the year). Also 25 honorable mentions and six super freshmen.
  • Women's Preview: The preseason top 25 with a paragraph for each team (two pages long), pages 190-191
  • The Back Page (inside back cover) looks at some of the most famous coaching trees, starting with James Naismith and taking stops at Kentucky and North Carolina. Also featured, UCLA, Indiana and Duke.
  • CSS, the Comcast Sports South cable channel took out an ad sdvertising 175+ men's and women's college basketball games in 2007-2008 (page 19)
  • There are no scheduled in this magazine (since it is printed so early)
  • Grade: B++

  • Shop for your favorite college's gear, apparel, licensed products, books and DVDs at!

    Recruiting Coverage
  • Recruiting coverage in the preview is provided by Starting at page 183.
  • Top 100 players of 2007. I won't reveal who they picked #1 but you may have it in your sandwich. I won't reveal the #3 either, but that's all you need according to the Beatles.
  • Top 25 recruiting classes (just a list)
  • Top 101-300 class of 2007 with college of choice listed
  • Top 100 players broken down in Top 20s for each traditional position
  • Top 100 2008 class
  • Top 25 2009 class. I won't do you any favors by revealing the #1 ;-)
  • Top 10 2010 class

    Conference Previews
  • The BCS conferences get a full page conference preview that includes: predicted finish order, 06-07 team standings, Team Recruiting Ranking, All conference first, second and third team, and Player of the Year, Defensive player of the year, Most Underrated and Newcomer of the Year. Conferences with a full page preview: ACC, Big 10, Big 12, Big East, Pac 10 and SEC. If you are keeping count, yes they are the six BCS teams :)
  • The remaining conferences only get an All-Conference team, nothing else!

    2007 NCAA College Basketball Tournament games on DVD!

    Team Previews
  • The BCS teams get a full page preview for each team. Each preview has an intro, frontcourt, backcourt adn final analysis. Rosters with jersey numbers, height/weight, class status, hometown and detailed statistics from 06-07 are inclded. Props to Athlon for this! The incoming players are included at the bottom of the roster and a short paragraph briefly introduces them. Another nice touch by Athlon! Key players gone from 06-07 are also included, as well as how did the team do in the post-season. No coaching records, just a mention of the head coach. A player from the team is usually pictured within the preview.
  • High mid-major teams predicted to get to the post-season (NCAA or NIT) get a half-page review, with a detailed roster, but not as detailed as the BCS teams. For example, four Atlantic 10 teams get half-page previews, while the remaining 10 teams get about 1/6th of a page of full text. Other mid-major conferences receiving half-page reviews for their top teams: The Colonial, Conference USA, the MAC, Missouri Valley, Mountain West, the WAC, and WCC. The only mid-major conference teams receiving full page (instead of half-page) reviews are Memphis and Gonzaga.
  • The mid-majors get just one paragraph instead of a full page. The top teams in the mid-major conferences get longer paragraphs. No rosters, no nothing, but the top players of each time are discussed in the preview.

  • No schedules posted, apart from the exempt holiday season tournaments. This is understandable since the magazine is posted so early.
  • No coaching records or list of assistant coaches
  • Teams from non-BCS conference who are not projected to make the post-season get either one paragraph or 1/6th of a page. Not very mid-major/low-major friendly.
  • Only two pages of women's coverage

    Stand-out features
  • Detailed rosters with jersey numbers (for those following the games on TV), and detailed statistics from 06-07 (points, rebounds, percentages, etc)
  • Nice coverage for all BCS teams, along with Memphis and Gonzaga
  • List of Bob Cousy 2008 award candidates
  • Good recruiting coverage
  • Nice general interest features

    Compared to the other preview magazines
  • Coming later! This is the first preview magazine I got so there's nothing to compare it with :)

    2007 NCAA College Basketball Tournament games on DVD!

  • This is a nice preview magazine for the college basketball fan!
  • Fans of BCS teams will love it
  • Nice set of general interest features
  • If your favorite non-BCS team is projected to make the NCAA or the NIT you get a nice half-page preview with a complete roster. If not, you will be disappointed by the coverage.
  • Which magazine to get? At the time of writing only this one and Lindy's are available. I haven't looked at Lindy's this year, but I do recommend the Athlon assuming you do not object to its shortcomings.

    Get Ready for the 2007-2008 season!
  • Scout the teams by getting 2006-2007 NCAA tournaments on DVD! from Amazon.
  • Shop for your favorite college's gear, apparel, licensed products, books and DVDs at!
  • Also be sure to check out my Gigantic 2007-2008 online preview of links to online previews
  • Get historic and classic college basketball dvds from Amazon!
  • Sprawl on the couch and draw plays like a real coach!.
  • If you liked this review, and you want to see more magazines reviewed, please let me know!
  • If you are a publisher and you want your magazine to be mercilessly reviewed, please let me know!
  • If you are a billionaire and you loved this review, and you want to send me a million dollar check, I'll gladly take it!

  • Monday, September 17, 2007

    Meet the new Phil Martelli book: Don't Call Me Coach: A Lesson Plan for Life

    Phil Martelli's new book has been released! You can buy it now! It can be yours for $17 or so at Amazon. The title is Don't Call Me Coach: A Lesson Plan for Life, although my alternate title is "Don't call me Coach, call me David Letterman!". The hardcover book is 240 pages long, published by Camino Books. And yes, St Joe's fans will be thrilled to find out the Hawk is on the front cover. And I'm sure there will be references to Martelli's Hawk Talk television sidekick, Mr Bracketology, Joe Lunardi. Ten episodes of Hawk Talk air nationally during the basketball season on CSTV, and on local/regional stations near Philly.

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