Season 4

290 entries (1-100 shown)

Dedication

First, this. In mid-August, I was inside a cube-shaped Pilot Travel Center alongside an otherwise barren and remote stretch of northern Pennsylvania. That's where I met someone who might be the tallest truck stop employee in America. He must have been about 6-foot-8, at the very least. The mop he p...

Preseason Pickle!

If it were up to Bally, all preseason previews would be big production numbers. ...

Specialness

There's an annual event -- if that's a phrase suitable and grey enough to describe something that doesn't cut it as a tradition -- here in our household. Every year around this time, the satellite television company beams in a solid week of unlimited American professional basketball in a free previe...

The Struggle

Mid-major universities tend to fall in one of three categories. There are the expensive and tiny religious schools in remote and leafy locations, flame-keepers of Christian subsects born out of the Great Schisms. You have your specialized colleges: the teacher's schools, the agriculture and mining i...

Your Opinion Is Important

The New Hampshire boarding school I attended is located on a remote hilltop, in a broadcast television dead-spot and a half-hour's walk from the nearest cash register. Back in the 1980's, before WiFi brought the world together, our only contact points with the real world were the radio and the Bosto...

Hockey and Me

In 1995, five years into my stay out in Oregon, I became homesick for the opposite coast, the one I grew up on. The feeling started as confusion and frustration, which grew into a acute sense of not belonging, culminating in a crystalline realization. I missed hockey. My New York Rangers had won th...

Of 20-Sided Dice, and Quant-Based Analysis

Here's another story we won't have time for later. When I was 12, I went through a phase that most failed child prodigies go through, the fitful burst of youthful creativity and frustration that comes right before the realization that girls are interesting. For me, it manifested itself in a short-li...

Sports Blogs, R.I.P. (2004-07)

Before throwing the switch, he gathered his thoughts in the virtual darkness, choosing his words carefully. He didn't know who was out there on the other side -- who his audience would be, whether or not he would be able to find one. If an audience for someone like him even existed. This was somethi...

C-U.T.E.!

Conference USA applies for mid-major membership, with disastrous results for Bally. ...

Living Without Football

It was an easygoing, unassuming late-summer Saturday in Rhode Island. I had completed my weekend house-husband chores (saving the stinky litter boxes for last, as usual), then prepared for a long, languid afternoon of relaxation on the patio. I contemplated the birdfeeder, turning out a few chamber-...

Changes Around Here

Once upon a time there was a tiny little cell, one among a million billion, sloshing and sliding inside a gigantic and vibrant and heaving body. The tiny little cell did its tiny little job as well as it tiny little could, and during its time off it had fun bouncing around with other tiny little lik...

The Boubacar 11/12/2007 (First Edition)

COLUMBUS, Oh. -- Daily roundups have been a Mid-Majority staple over the past three-plus years. They were known as "Daily Dribblings" during the first season, weren't given titles in Year Two -- an open pander to the surrealist Samuel Beckett fans who make up a good portion of my audience. Finally, ...

MMBOW #1: Kyle Hines, North Carolina-Greensboro

One of the most common e-mails I received last year was the repeated question about where the Mid-Majority Baller of the Specified-Time-Period went. I can't even remember why I took a year off from doing it, it was always such a fun part of every Monday. It had become such an honor that school SID's...

Game! Of! The! Night! 11/12/2007: Appalachian State at Charlotte

  Appalachian State (Southern) at Charlotte (A-10) Halton Arena -- Charlotte, NC 7:30 PM EST Appalachian State's cagers will open their 2007-08 campaign tonight, and they do so on what some might refer to as "a mission." Sweet memories of San Juan wins in December 2006 (Virginia, Vanderbilt)...

The Travelogue: Chapter 1

Pittsburgh Late Saturday night, in the temporary Saint Louis locker room underneath the University of Pittsburgh's Petersen Events Center, new Billikens head coach Rick Majerus rubbed his face crosswise and lengthwise, trying to invent things to say about a blowout win over Houston Baptist. Failing...

The Boubacar 11/13/2007 (Dance Team Edition)

But, how do we SAY "Boubacar"... is it "BOW buh car", "Boo buh car", or something else?? If we're going to properly use this in the future, we need to know.... Rod, Asheville NC COLUMBUS, Oh. -- "Boubacar," as I've heard it on TV, is "BOO-buh-car." It's a highly exalted name of West African origi...

Game! Of! The! Night! 11/13/2007: Texas A&M-Corpus; Christi vs. Texas-El Paso

  Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (Southland) vs. Texas-El Paso (Conference USA) College Station, TX (Neutral) -- NIT Season Tip-Off 6:00 PM EST A current mid-major darling meets one of our favorite Mid-Majority ex-pats tonight in the early game of the Texas A&M-College Station pod of the P...

The Boubacar 11/14/2007 (P-NIT Edition)

LOUISVILLE -- In our third installment of the Boubacar this year, let's wrap up the sights and sounds (both literally) from the Columbus pod of the NIT Season Tip-Off. Wisconsin-Green Bay. I knew coming in what Columbia was about (and, perhaps, what Columbia's 2016-17 team is going to be about as...

Game! Of! The! Night! 11/14/2007: North Carolina vs. Davidson

  North Carolina (ACC) vs. Davidson (SoCon) Bobcats Arena, Charlotte NC (Neutral) 7:00 PM EST Tonight marks the first of three remarkable opportunities for the SoCon favorite Wildcats: a trio of neutral-court shots at college basketball's elite. Later on, they'll play Duke on this same floor...

The Travelogue: Chapter 2

Kentucky It goes in two directions, separated by painted lines or, in the case of American interstate highways, steel and shrubbery. The two directions are named "coming" and "going," two fluid concepts that depend a lot on which side of the road you happen to be on. Another key travel duality i...

The Boubacar 11/15/2007 (Free Edition)

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. -- "Yo," my mid-major "peeps." Before we kick off this morning's Boubacar action, I just wanted to let you know that we're running a free preview of Basketball State today. It's one of your last chances to grab a 12-month subscription at the early season price before it goes up ne...

Game! Of! The! Night! 11/15/2007: Gardner-Webb vs. Connecticut

  Gardner-Webb (Atlantic Sun) vs. Connecticut (Big East) Madison Square Garden - New York, NY (Neutral) - Coaches vs. Cancer Tourney Semifinals 7:00 PM EST This will be the first of two shots at the Huskies that Rick Scruggs and his Kentucky-conquering heroes will get, the other coming up at...

The Boubacar 11/16/2007 (Weekend Edition)

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. -- Well, that concludes the first full week of the 2007-08 college basketball season. Just so you know how things will work from here on out, no Boubacars on Saturdays or Sundays, one catch-all G!O!T!N! for all three days, and Bally will show up sometime over the weekend. Mickel...

Game! Of! The! Night! 11/17/2007: Dayton at George Mason

  Dayton (A-10) at George Mason (CAA) Fairfax, VA - Patriot Center 7:00 PM EST All due respect to the "2-0 Showdown" tonight between Colgate and Texas State at the Kennesaw tourney, but we have an Atlantic-14 threat visiting CAA country on Saturday evening. Dayton has great senior leadership...

The Mid-Majority Interview: Mikaelyn Austin

Because no website has ever thought of anything like this before -- to my knowledge, at least -- TMM will be running an interview series at the end of each week throughout the college basketball season. I know, I know, this has been done before, in other places. But we'll be chatting with coaches, p...

The Boubacar 11/19/2007 (ACC Rhymes With "Ack" Edition)

PAWTUCKET, R.I. -- Wow, what a weekend. So packed with hot mid-major action that I don't have time to tell any jokes here in the intro paragraph. Here we go! Siena's Super Saints. Number 20's been an unlucky spot in the national popularity contest lately. That's where Kentucky sat when Gardner-Web...

MMBOW #2: Josh Akognon, Cal State Fullerton

There were plenty of deserving candidates in the season's second week, lots of big-time performances by big-time players on teams in the lower 22 conferences. But we're going to use this space this time to recognize the efforts of a little guy from a little conference that gets little exposure back ...

Game! Of! The! Night! 11/19/2007: Fairleigh Dickinson at Rider

  Fairleigh Dickinson (NEC) at Rider (MAAC) Lawrenceville, NJ - Alumni Gymnasium 7:30 PM EST Tonight's G!O!T!N! is a celebration of all things Jersey: Bon Jovi, the Devils, and that TV show that ended on a black screen. At lovely Alumni Gym in Larryville, the Exit 7A Broncs will entertain th...

P-NIT Fever!

When you love the Preseason NIT as much as Bally does, you have to go all the way. ...

The Travelogue: Chapter 3

Tennessee Morning cracks open over Middle Tennessee like a giant farm-fresh egg. It bastes the mini-mall in gooey yellow sunshine, washing over the giant fluorescent Shoe Carnival sign. The letters blink a few times, then they're drowned, extinguished for another day. The sun soaks the Bread Rest...

The Boubacar 11/20/2007 (Justin Credulous Edition)

PAWTUCKET, R.I. -- It's a snowy Tuesday here at the office home, but that won't depress us, not in the least. Here, for the first time ever, a 100% positive Boubacar... Belmont. "They" said it wasn't a "real" upset. Oh, it's just Cincinnati. Never mind that UC has five times more money to spend on...

Game! Of! The! Night! 11/20/2007: Austin Peay at Utah State

  Austin Peay (OVC) at Utah State (WAC) Dee Glen Smith Spectrum -- Logan, UT (South Padre Island Tournament) 9:05 PM EST For reasons unbeknownst, the last few days of The Mid-Majority have been brought to you by Office Depot. Office Depot: do you have your "easy button?" If anybody understan...

The Boubacar 11/21/2007 (Aussie Edition)

PAWTUCKET, R.I. -- This season's been real warpy in terms of time... early start on the 5th, and now we're staring down Thanksgiving. The Official Wife™ and I are on the way out to go grocery-shopping for what used to be Unturkey day around here (Why, damn you, WHY!?!?!?) but I said, "Not yet,...

Game! Of! The! Night! 11/21/2007: North Texas at Texas-Arlington

  North Texas (Sun Belt) at Texas-Arlington (Southland) Texas Hall - Arlington, TX 8:05 PM EST Are you ready? Are you ready to Take It To The Stage? No, not that Stage... this one. Two 3-0 teams will go at it tonight in Arlington, ranked 28th (UNT) and 39th (UTA) in the early version of the ...

The Mid-Majority Interview: Bill Trocchi

I'll allow you a few minutes to put the pieces of your blown mind back together. Okay? Let's go. Big media rivalries, like college sports rivalries, are supposed to be predicated on the idea that the folks on the other side are filthy, writhing subhumans. Sometimes we have to remind ourselves that t...

The Travelogue: Chapter 4

The Long One Steel-colored first light above a lengthwise highway, rolling gun-metal hills beyond, a scene set off by a row of spindly and barren trees in crisp black focus. There's something comforting, regular about the standard tableau that I usually wake up to on the road, a simple chalk draw...

The Boubacar 11/26/2007 (Supersize Edition)

BOONE, N.C. -- The problem with taking the holiday off from posting is that things happen, build up, force a gigantic Monday post. Here, then, is your long weekend in mid-major land. Saturday, November 24, 2007. After the pitch-blah of Black Friday came a sunburst of brightness, as hungry mids ove...

MMBOW #3: Jason Thompson, Rider

The Rider Broncs went 1-2 over the weekend at the Old Spice Classic in Orlando, but one of the top stories coming from that tourney was the performance of a certain 6-11 center, number 1 in maroon and a likely NBA pick. Fresh off a nationally televised showcase that lasted all weekend long, Jason Th...

Game! Of! The! Night! 11/26/2007: Davidson at Appalachian State

  Davidson at Appalachian State (SoCon) Holmes Center - Boone, NC 7:00 PM EST Conference games are already upon us. Can you believe it? Hoops Nation's first league contest of the year happened last Saturday here in the Southern Conference, as Georgia Southern beat Furman. But that one had li...

The Boubacar 11/27/2007 (STEFF-in Edition)

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- The leftovers are already running out in your fridge, but they're always stocked up here at the Bread Restaurant. Personally, I recommend the cinnamon crunch bagel with hazelnut cream cheese, and perhaps a veggie grilled panini sandwich later. I'd better finish this Boubacar u...

Game! Of! The! Night! 11/27/2007: Binghamton at Cornell

  Binghamton (America East) at Cornell (Ivy League) Newman Arena - Ithaca, NY 7:00 PM EST It's a November Tuesday night, which means lots of guarantee games and prefab power-conference challenge matchups. But up in the occasionally snowy wilds of upstate New York, we have an intriguing battl...

The State Of The Other 22, Week 2: 11/27/2007

I know, I know, I promised to do this last week. I didn't. I'm doing it now. Welcome to the first edition of The State Of The Other 22, a weekly look at the best and hottest mids in convenient top-ten form. There is no Week 1. The State of College Basketball is a brand-new ratings system that uses ...

Game! Of! The! Night! 11/28/2007: Georgetown at Old Dominion

  Georgetown (Big East) at Old Dominion (CAA) Constant Convocation Center -- Norfolk, VA 7:00 PM EST Sure, we're being quasi-homers again and picking our attended game, but this is what we've got for counter-programming to the ACC-Big Ten thing. This is the home-and-home rematch of last year...

The Boubacar 11/28/2007 (Banquet Edition)

NORFOLK, Va. -- Sorry about the late post today. Full story later on, but in most of Southern Virginia, the internet is something to catch bass with. Not a slight against those good people, mind you, I'd trade it all in for a life in a place like Skippers. Life down there brought to mind a modern to...

The Boubacar 11/29/2007 (Pop Loser Edition)

HIGH POINT, N.C. -- In a world of Bill Simmons this and Dennis Miller that, there is no worse crime than blowing a pop culture reference. You know what I'm talking about. I think all of us, at one time, have tried to pass ourselves off as having seen a movie (by looking at the list of quotes on iMDB...

Game! Of! The! Night! 11/29/2007: Drexel at George Mason

  Drexel at George Mason (Colonial) Patriot Center -- Fairfax, VA 7:00 PM EST We here at The Mid-Majority are 100 percent for early conference games and schedule gerrymandering if it gives us games like this, contests that will shape the conversation in leagues like the CAA for weeks to come...

The Boubacar 11/30/2007 (TWIsM Edition)

DAVIDSON, N.C. -- Welcome to your weekend Big B, the final one of November. Hard to believe it's almost December already. Season's almost a month old. Say, how's the family? Kids alright? Good, good to hear. This weather we're having... never thought we'd still be in short sleeves and singing Christ...

Game! Of! The! Night! 12/1/2007: Hampton vs. Howard

  Hampton vs. Howard (MEAC) Madison Square Garden -- New York, NY (Big Apple Classic) 9:00 PM EST We figure you already know about the big mid-major vs. major games on Saturday's docket (Duke-Davidson in Charlotte, Indiana @ SIU, Michigan @ Harvard, Seton Hall @ Saint Mary's, Texas Tech @ Ce...

The Mid-Majority Interview: Gregg Marshall

Gregg Marshall is a lot of things: a master motivator, an excellent rap dancer, and the first mid-major head coach to have a double-keg installed in his living room. As of ten months ago, after coming up short in his first six attempts, he's also a member of the NCAA Tournament victor's club -- join...

The Boubacar 12/3/2007 (Hey! Edition)

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The "e" in e-mail was supposed to stand for "emproved" and "enstant." It was designed to be better than regular mail, because it would arrive there the second you sent it and you can feel confident enough in the system that every e-mail will be properly received. Sure, you can't ...

MMBOW #4: Michael Bramos, Miami (Oh.)

Michael Bramos of Miami (Oh.) was Michigan's Mr. Basketball runner-up coming out of high school, and he's spent most of his college career as a solid, dependable yet overlooked third option -- he's that guy out on the floor who plays 35 minutes but usually puts up more intangibles and Charlie Points...

Game! Of! The! Night! 12/3/2007: Towson at Delaware

  Towson at Delaware (Colonial) Bob Carpenter Center -- Newark, DE 7:00 PM EST After a crazy upside-down backwards day in the CAA, we get a night of hoops from members of what's been the bottom half of the league recently. It's the only conference game in Hoops Nation tonight, and it'll be c...

The Travelogue: Chapter 5

Philadelphia Lift up your downcast eyes, woman; there is a special place in heaven for you. O truck stop waitress, you sustainer of the long-distance voyageur, Cinderella of the service industry, underfoot guardian and caretaker of the linoleum empire... one day, when you finally fall from your wea...

The Boubacar 12/4/2007 (Club Edition)

PAWTUCKET, R.I. -- Less than a month into this, and the whole Boubacar concept is taking hold. I'm getting tons of e-mails describing players, plays, teams and performances as "Boubacar-worthy," "Boubacar material," "Boub-tastic." One even used the term -- I kid you not -- "Boubalicious." Surely, in...

Game! Of! The! Night! 12/4/2007: Akron at Winthrop

  Akron (MAC) at Winthrop (Big South) Winthrop Coliseum -- Rock Hill, SC 7:00 PM EST These two teams combined for 55 wins last season, which immediately qualifies it as a mid-major showdown of the highest degree. The Eagles and Zips took different March paths, though: Winthrop beat Notre Dam...

The State Of The Other 22, Week 3

The State of College Basketball is a brand-new ratings system that uses a lot of good basketball sense, per-game team performance ratings and degradation of older results to rank the teams from No. 1 to 341 (here's the long-winded version). In its overall form, it retroactively picked three of the F...

The Boubacar 12/5/2007 (Purple Edition)

PAWTUCKET, R.I. -- First of all this morning, a big hello-and-thank-you to the 213 members of the Upset Club. We got you one (a result, surely, of all the Northern Illinois love from yesterday) or two last night, but those e-mail boxes should be lighting up soon with lots more Upset Alerts. Maybe ev...

Game! Of! The! Night! 12/5/2007: Creighton at Xavier

  Creighton (MVC) at Xavier (Atlantic 10) Cintas Center - Cincinnati, OH 8:00 PM EST Another day, another great mid-matchup. Here are two teams that made the 2007 NCAA Tournament, both with issues of production replacement, but both are putting up solid numbers in the early going. Creighton...

The Boubacar 12/6/2007 (Tasty Snaxx Edition)

PAWTUCKET, R.I. -- Good morning, Hoops Nation. I've been having a bunch of fun with our new database of officials over at Basketball State. We've got a white pages listing, rankings of fouls called by teams including each ref and average call margins on home teams, and maps of all the games your fav...

Game! Of! The! Night! 12/6/2007: Valparaiso at Wright State

  Valparaiso at Wright State (Horizon) Ervin J. Nutter Center - Dayton, OH 7:00 PM EST An embarrassment of small-conference league-game riches tonight. Among other contests, we've got Sacred Heart at CCSU in the NEC, ambitious Morehead State will take on league champs Austin Peay in the OVC...

The Travelogue: Chapter 6

North Carolina When I'm covering a game, I always dress in a crisp shirt and a solid-color tie, usually a coat as well... just like the coaches do. It's important to look nice. (That's something I picked up from Andy Katz.) Those coaches, and sometimes other media members, will occasionally enga...

The Boubacar 12/7/2007 (Boubacar Edition)

PAWTUCKET, R.I. -- It's taken a week, but I believe we have all the entries in our Pop Loser contest, most of which took as much time as media mail to arrive because of e-mail clog on this end. And of our 22 entries, I had to eliminate 15 of them. The point was not to point out an instance of refere...

Game! Of! The! Night! 12/7/2007: Utah Valley State at California-Santa Barbara

  Utah Valley State (Independents) at California-Santa Barbara (Big West) The Thunderdome - Santa Barbara, CA 10:00 PM EST Thunderdome's simple. Get to the weapons, use them any way you can. I know the Gauchos and Wolverines won't break the rules, because there aren't any. We picked tonight...

Sssecrets!

When Bally's explosive secret is revealed, will anything be the same? Or will it just be an excuse to bring in a guest star? (A brief primer on our history with Julius Hodge.) And give, if you haven't already this week. ...

The Mid-Majority Interview: Kyle Hines

Kyle Hines is the 6-5 senior leader of the UNC-Greensboro Spartans, but he's a lot more. In addition to a 17.3 ppg average and a streak of 56 consecutive games of scoring in double figures, Hines is a gentleman-scholar, a blogger and one of the most well-spoken ballplayers you could ever hope to mee...

The Boubacar 12/10/2007 (Official Ironmen Rally Edition)

PAWTUCKET, R.I. -- I was looking over the schedule, trying to find some games to go to this week. Maybe you were too. There's hardly anything going on out there in Hoops Nation this week. Virtual bupkis. Not enough nothing to cancel the G!O!T!N! for the week, but all across the land, the "athlete" p...

Game! Of! The! Night! 12/10/2007: New Jersey Tech at Stony Brook

  New Jersey Tech (Independents) at Stony Brook (America East) USB Sports Complex - Stony Brook, NY 7:00 PM EST Tonight's eight game slate gives us this standout contest, between two schools that have combined for 18 losses so far, with only one win between them. Lest you think that finals w...

MMBOW #5: Dane Brumagin, Missouri-Kansas City

The Missouri-Kansas City Kangaroos (3-7, 0-2 SL) are off to a tough start in Badlands Conference play, dropping their first couple of games on the road. But that shouldn't detract from a week by a player whose team just hasn't caught up with his greatness yet. For scoring 75 points in two league aw...

The Boubacar 12/11/2007 (Five In, Five Out Edition)

PAWTUCKET, R.I. -- Folks sometimes come up and ask me how they can get started with their very own mid-major college basketball blog. "Read mine all the way through, then do it better," I tell them. "Put me out of business, so I can go back to what I really love... 18-hour days of cross-checking my ...

Game! Of! The! Night! 12/11/2007: Saint Mary's at Southern Illinois

  Saint Mary's (West Coast) at Southern Illinois (Missouri Valley) The SIU Arena - Carbondale, IL 8:05 PM EST Even in a light week, we couldn't pass this one up, a rematch of the 2005 first-round mid-major-off between the No. 7 Salukis and No. 10 Gaels. That resulted in a wonderfully excitin...

The State Of The Other 22, Week 4

The State of College Basketball is a brand-new ratings system that uses a lot of good basketball sense, per-game team performance ratings and degradation of older results to rank the teams from No. 1 to 341 (here's the long-winded version). In its overall form, it retroactively picked three of the F...

Finals Week, Part I: History

Here we go, once again! It's the second non-annual Mid-Majority Finals Week. The test is 40 questions long, 10 each in four sections: History (today), Geography (Wed.), Mathematics (Thu.) and Bracketology (Fri.). You'll have 24 hours from the postmark of each message (roughly 7:15 PM Eastern... this...

The Boubacar 12/12/2007 (Art Appreciation Edition)

PAWTUCKET, R.I. -- Here's the mail, it never fails... it makes me want to wag my tail. Remember me? Im the guy from the espn.com chat that was talking about why and how Rhode Island would go into the Dome and take care of Syracuse on Saturday night. After laughing in my face and down talking a ver...

Game! Of! The! Night! 12/12/2007: Pacific at Santa Clara

  Pacific (Big West) at Santa Clara (West Coast) Leavey Center - Santa Clara, CA 10:05 PM EST G!O!T!N! goes late night again, to a strange and wonderful land of silicon and dreams called Northern California. And tonight, we have two historically significant mid-major programs that have regis...

Finals Week, Part II: Geography

Welcome to the second part of second non-annual Mid-Majority Finals Week, something to do while you're waiting for the real students to get done with their non-basketball related tests. Today's topic is the geography of Hoops Nation. If you've been around the world and I, I, I... you'll do pretty we...

The Boubacar 12/13/2007 (City Edition)

PAWTUCKET, R.I. -- It's the bright early morning of an American day that will likely end with a lot fewer baseball fans. As I often say to disillusioned sports nuts tired of steroids this and Barry Bonds that, why don't you give mid-major college basketball a try? We've got close games, tons of te...

Game! Of! The! Night! 12/13/2007: Louisiana Tech vs. Centenary

  Louisiana Tech (WAC) vs. Centenary (Summit) Bossier City, LA (Neutral court) 8:00 PM EST Tonight's G!O!T!N! is a long-overdue chance to spill some ink on Centenary's start. The Gentlemen are 6-4, with wins over Texas Tech and SMU, and they split their first weekend in the Badlands Conferen...

Finals Week, Part III: Mathematics

This right here is the third of four sections of the second non-annual Mid-Majority Finals Week, which is not as much fun as watching college basketball but is 1000 percent more participatory. Speaking of percentages of things, this segment has to do with math. All kids love math! You'll have 24 ho...

The Boubacar 12/14/2007 (Ginormous Edition)

PAWTUCKET, R.I. -- It had to come to an end eventually, these two weeks of sitting at home, watching basketball, cooking dinner for the Official Wife and digging out the driveway. This weekend, I go out on the road again for a seven-day, eight-game trip through Ohio, Maryland and Pennsylvania. But ...

Game! Of! The! Night! 12/15/2007: Miami (Oh.) at Wright State

  Miami (Oh.) (MAC) at Wright State (Horizon) Ervin J. Nutter Center - Dayton, OH 7:00 PM EST As we ease back into post-exam hoops, that little bridge across the holidays towards conference season, we have two teams that won their respective leagues last year. Both teams play slow, bruising ...

Finals Week, Part IV: Bracketology

And finally, painfully, mercifully, we've come to the end of the second non-annual Mid-Majority Finals Week. The slim slates of games are over, most teams are back practicing and playing again, looking forward to March Madness instead of exam excitement. We are too -- that's why this fourth section ...

Finals Week: The Answer Key

Thanks to the 168(!) people who played along with our second non-annual Mid-Majority Finals Week. That's so many people, they'd have to hold this class in one of those auditoriums where the professor doesn't know you from Samuel Haanpaa, where you have to spend five minutes of your six-minutes durin...

The Mid-Majority Interview: John Kuchar

You usually meet the best people by accident, and often in the strangest places. I made the acquaintance of John Kuchar in a PayPal complaint box -- he had subscribed to Basketball State last month but some stray binaries kept his account from being activated. Once that was ironed out, he told me ab...

The Boubacar 12/17/2007 (ARRRGH! Edition)

YOUNGSTOWN, Oh. -- It takes me so long to write these Boubacar intros, you can't even imagine. The pressure to write something clever and erudite is just... so immense. Usually takes about an hour just to have an idea, and that's after banging my forehead on the table until something figuraliterally...

Game! Of! The! Night! 12/17/2007: Texas-Arlington at Texas Christian

  Texas-Arlington (Southland) at Texas Christian (C-USA) Daniel-Meyer Coliseum - Fort Worth, TX 8:00 PM EST We've been talking about UTA quite a bit so far this year, and with good reason. The Mavericks are exceeding all coaches' poll expectations, starting out 8-0 with nice wins at Wichita ...

MMBOW #6: Samuel Haanpaa, Valparaiso

This was a close one... we had one major-beating, hyper-efficient performance by a Sun Belt baller with Demetric Bennett's 34-point, 14-for-19 performance in South Alabama's 71-67 win over Mississippi State. But he was edged out by two great performances by a hot Horizon League shooter. Samuel Haanp...

The Boubacar 12/18/2007 (ARRRGH! Edition, Part 2)

EMMITSBURG, Md. -- All three Ballys from Finals Week were sent out by The Official Wife yesterday, and the two from earlier contests are on their way as well. Still heartbroken that you didn't get one? Well, here's your chance. Inspired by yesterday's announcement of the new ARRRGH! award, which le...

Game! Of! The! Night! 12/18/2007: Elon at Chattanooga

  Elon at Chattanooga (SoCon) McKenzie Arena - Chattanooga, TN 7:00 PM EST Tonight in the grand old Southern Conference, we have two league-undefeated teams going at it. The Phoenix and Mocs are both 5-4 overall, but Chattanooga has won its first three of its 20-game SoCon schedule, while El...

The State Of The Other 22, Week 5

The State of College Basketball is a brand-new ratings system that uses a lot of good basketball sense, per-game team performance ratings and degradation of older results to rank the teams from No. 1 to 341 (here's the long-winded version). In its overall form, it retroactively picked three of the F...

Finals Week: The Essays

And now, the last entry concerned with the second non-annual Mid-Majority Finals Week. The 40th and final question was an essay question: What is your favorite mid-major NCAA Tournament memory, and where were you when it happened? We received 84 completed essays, and here are six of the best ones -...

The Boubacar 12/19/2007 (Dickie V Edition)

AKRON, Oh. -- There are so few of us... we who overanalyze everything about college basketball, pore over pages of stats, treat our game like a gigantic 341-piece puzzle that takes five months to solve itself. Our vision is distorted because we spend so much time talking to each other; we forget tha...

Game! Of! The! Night! 12/19/2007: Bradley at Butler

  Bradley (MVC) at Butler (Horizon) Hinkle Fieldhouse - Indianapolis, IN 7:00 PM EST When we pundits make our predictions in October, we are usually soooo sure of ourselves and our expertise and our intimate knowledge of the game of basketball. Many in this business make ice-cold ice-pick lo...

The Boubacar 12/20/2007 (W-W-W-W Edition)

KENT, Oh. -- Just a reminder that you have until Friday morning at 7-ish Eastern time to enter the Mid-Majority ARRRGH essay contest. We did the great NCAA moments during Finals Week, now it's time to recall the most frustrating mid-major collapse, defeat, buzzer-beating dropped decision you can thi...

Game! Of! The! Night! 12/20/2007: Centenary at North Texas

  Centenary (Summit) at North Texas (Sun Belt) Super Pit - Denton, TX 8:00 PM EST We hear there's some battle royale of double-digit undefeateds happening somewhere tonight, but we don't give a %^#&. Our invisible G!O!T!N! broadcast team will be in Denton, providing virtual "TMM 360" eve...

The Boubacar 12/21/2007 (Upset Island Edition)

NEW YORK -- A quick few words about mid-major upsets, followed by a lot of words about mid-major upsets. I go on the electronic sports talk radio some. The hosts usually don't know who I am, don't read this site or realize that "oh, you wrote that ESPN.com story?" I don't mind any of that. What I ...

Game! Of! The! Night! 12/22/2007: Holy Cross at Siena

  Holy Cross (Patriot) at Siena (Metro Atlantic) Times Union Center - Albany, NY 1:00 PM EST You may be able to find a more exciting, more meaningful or more televised contest this weekend. And bully for you if you do. This one's for the true hoops geeks, who love watching contrasting styles...

The Mid-Majority Interview: Mike Sutton

In March 2005, Tennessee Tech head coach Mike Sutton was suddenly stricken by Guillain-Barré Syndrome, a disease that can only be described as "mysterious." It laid siege to his central nervous system, leaving him paralyzed and clinging to life in a hospital for 10 months. Immobile and ...

The Boubacar 12/24/2007 (Christmas Edition)

PAWTUCKET, R.I. -- As promised, we're going to crown our ARRRGH contest winner today and give out a free stuffed Bally. We were looking for the best mid-major ARRRGH moment, the worst instance of thwarted victory, the most crushing realization that the big guys have won again and that "Hoosiers" mom...

MMBOW #7: Jaycee Carroll, Utah State

After a slow beginning to the 2007-08 season, the Utah State Aggies are now 9-5 with a four-game winning streak, and a lot of that has to do with their star guard. The All-American senior spent a lot of time in head coach Stew Morrill's office during the 3-4 start, trying to figure out how to turn t...

The Boubacar 12/27/2007 (Back to Business Edition)

PAWTUCKET, R.I. -- Hey y'all, hope you had a great holiday. We sure did here at the version of TMM Mobile HQ that has its own basement. And with the lack of actual games these past three days, we also have the chance to catch our breaths and look at a few off-court stories in Hoops Nation lately. ...

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One Beautiful Season

1BS weaved the history of mid-major college basketball together with stories from the 2009-10 season, culminating in Butler's epic run to the National Championship game. Now it's available as a free download: PDF in the original 592-page book layout with all photos and graphics, or ePub format for electronic reading devices.