Archive for October, 2008

Thought Clock takes an absurdly quick look, and analysis into, the latest USA Today/ESPN Poll.

The first edition of the Thought Clock–running down the first Coaches Poll. Each week I will bring you some quick hitting one-liners about the top 25 and beyond using the USA Today/ESPN Coaches Poll as the setting. This one is just getting us warmed up with much more to come.

Also there will be tons more in the way of preseason college basketball coverage on the site–don’t you worry. Here we go…

Ranking Team The Thoughts:
1 North Carolina Everyone knew they were #1
2 Connecticut Everyone knew they were #2
3 Louisville A bit surprised they are top 3 but a definite top 10 team that adds a five star recruit
4 UCLA Can we even question them at this point? Shipp is ready for the next level
5 Duke Again, too high. They are going to be better but #5, I think not.
6 Pittsburgh Always have the talent and the coach but always disappoint
7 Michigan St. Izzo is the man and will have his team performing to the highest of their abilities
8 Texas Abrams is good enough to carry this team to this spot
9 Notre Dame Look out for this team, tons of Jr. and Sr. players
10 Purdue See above-this is a total team effort if they can live up to this hype
11 Gonzaga Well balance and still have Pargo the Sr. but always disappoint
12 Memphis This is when is pays to be in C-USA, off-years like this – they lost a lot
13 Tennessee A good (insane) coach can take you far
14 Oklahoma Blake Griffin is back and he has some new talent around him
15 Arizona St. James Harden is legit, this could be a nice story this season in ‘Zona
16 Miami (FL) Probably over ranked but do have primarily Jr. & Sr. starters with some young Frosh talent
17 Marquette Another ‘teams team’ with a great backcourt
18 Georgetown Need someone to step up to be the #1 option
19 Florida Still very young believe it or not, Calathes will lead the team
20 Davidson Curry will be a big story but this team will have a short leash as far as losing
21 Wisconsin I never pay much attention to them and they are always solid
22 USC Demar DeRozan; the new OJ Mayo
23 Kansas Where does Sherron Collins go from here? They will need him to lead
24 Wake Forest Underrated, they should be the class of the ACC with UNC
25 Villanova Why not one more Big East team?

A ton more on the upcoming college basketball season in the coming weeks. We are very excited and I hope you are too.


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The Philadelphia police have reported 76 arrests to date, thus far exceeding my over/under of 25. The parade through the streets of Philadelphia is set for today at noon. The mayor has stated that he wants good behavior during the event. Bottom line: yeah, that will happen… good luck with that one

Andrew Bynum signed a $58 million contract extension to keep him in Los Angeles through the 2012-2013 season. This coming just days after Andrew’s 21st birthday. That buys a lot of strings of bowling. I had a couple friends in elementary school who through birthday bashes at bowling allies. Bottom line: if Bynum did the same, his party would likely be better

South Florida and Cincinnati showed us just how awful the Big East is. On tap this weekend, West Virginia visits Connecticut in a battle for #1. Both teams still play Pittsburgh if they can get their act together. Bottom line: one of these teams is going to get a major bowl…

Both Obama and McCain will appear on Monday Night Football this week. They will be asked questions by Chris Berman. Yeah, this can’t go terribly wrong. No better a way to spend the night immediately preceding an election but chillin’ on Monday Night Football. Bottom line: they should do a punt, pass and kick skills competition for an extra 5 electorial votes

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Congratulations to the Philadelphia Phillies and to our own Mike who is a live long resident of Philly and a die hard Phillies fan! As far as the game last night, maybe every baseball game should be 3 innings. That was exciting as all hell. Also, it took less than 15 minutes for the fans at Citizens Bank Park to find something to boo. That something was Bud Selig. A couple over/unders to ponder; 25 arrests, 1.5 deaths and 2.5 times the fans find something to boo at the parade. Bottom line: sh*ts going down

On The Ultimate Fighter more bad blood between Team Mirr and Team Nogueira. Mirr approaches Vinny Magalhaes, who is slated to fight later in the show, and tells him that his jiu-jitsu ground game is better than the current Interim Heavyweight Champ Nogueira. Vinny responds by calling Nog’s ground game “basic”. Nog was told by his team about this and had something to say (in Portuguese) to Vinny. Vinny denied ever saying anything negative about the champion. SPIKE was censoring the Portuguese wears which was funny. Bottom line: I wish I could speak Portuguese

Daunte Culpepper worked out for the Detroit Lions yesterday–showing just how desperate BOTH sides are. He turned down the Chiefs… how does that make the Chiefs feel? They are below the Lions in someones eye, even if it is Daunte. Bottom line: Poor Tony Gonzales.

The Oklahoma City Thunder made their home debut last night. Unfortunately they lost 87-98 to the Milwaukee Bucks. Durrant went 5-14 from the floor and scored only 12 points on the evening. I hope that the franchise in Ok City does well, meaning the fans support them. Bottom line: it’s going to be a long year in Oklahoma City

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It was just announced by Major League Baseball that game 5 will resume tonight.  The bottom of the 6th will start at 8:37 pm EST.

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Our NBA preview continues with a lookat the Atlantic Division.

Boston Celtics: Last year 66-16, NBA Champs

Starting Five:PG Rajon Rando SG Ray Allen SF Paul Pierce PF Kevin Garnett C Kendrick Perkins Key Reserves: Leon Powe, Patrick O’Bryant, Eddie House, Tony Allen, Glen Davis, and their mascot Brian Scalabrine

Projections: The Celtics are a great team with an unbelievable bench. Powe gives them great energy off the bench.  The big three of Allen, Garnett, and Pierce are still there and will carry them through the season.  We will see how they react to being the hunted in the much improved Eastern Conference.  I also think Allen will struggle this year. I really like Rondo, especially if he can knock some shots from the outside.

Player to watch: Rajon Rondo

New Jersey Nets:  Last year 34-48, 10th in the east

Anticipated Starting Five: PG Devon Harris SG Vince Carter SF Bobby Simmons PF Yi Jianlian C Josh Boone Key Reserves Keyon Dooling, Sean Williams, Eduardo Najera

Projections: This team is in a bit of transition. After trading away Kidd and Jefferson they look weaker. I have been a Devon Harris fan but he and Carter cannot carry this team.  We will see what this team can do. They do have one positive: they will play the Knicks 4 times.

Player to Watch: Josh Boone

New York Knicks: Last year 23-59 14th in the east

Anticipated Starting Five: PG Chris Duhon SG Jamal Crawford SF Quentin Richardson PF David Lee C Zach Randolph Key Reserves: Eddy Curry, Stephon Marbury, Mardy Collins, Nate Robinson, Danilo Galinari

Projections: The Knicks are bad and Mike D’antoni will not help that much, at least not yet.  This team is a joke and has been for a couple of years.  It’s too bad also, the garder is an amazing place but it doesn’t matter when that is the product they put on the floor.  Maybe they will get Lebron in 2 years.

Player to Watch: Chris Duhon

Philadelphia 76ers: Last year 40-42, 7th in the east.

Starting Five: PG Andre Miller SG Andre Iguodala SF Thaddeus Young PF Elton Brand C Samuel Dalembert Key Reserves: Lou Williams, Kareem Rush, Reggie Evans, Theo Ratliff, Royal Ivey, Donyell Marshall, Mareese Speights

Projections: This has been one of the teams to watch in the Eastern Conference after a great offseason.  There is no doubt the sixers will be good but I think it will take sometime.  I don’t see them running out of the gate that strong but they will gel sooner or later. I really like them to push for a first round home playoff series. I see big contributions from their bench also.

Player to Watch: Lou Williams

Toronto Raptors: Last year 41-41, 6th in the east

Anticipated Starting Five: PG Jose Calderon SG Anthony Parker SF Jamario Moon PF Chris Bosh C Jermaine Oneal Key Reserves: Andrea Bargnani, Jason Kapono, Kris Humphries Joey Graham

Projections: The Raptors are good. They do have some glaring weaknesses though, depth is the biggest one.  Roko Ukic is their backup PG?? Their starting five is good maybe even better that good but with essentially two power forwards, can they play inside at all.  They are going to make the playoffs but they still have a lot of questions to answer.

Player to Watch: Jamario Moon

Projected Standings

1. Boston Celtics

2. Philadelphia 76ers

3. Toronto Raptors

4. New Jersey Nets

5. New York Knicks

Key newcomers: Elton Brand (Phi), Jermaine Oneal (Tor), Yi Jianlian (NJ), Mike D’Antoni (NY)

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