Hoopaholic’s Gazette: Tipoff Has Arrived

b-ballArriving just in time as soothing balm in this time of anxious trepidation: College Hoops.

Can I get a witness?

Can I get a Hallelujah?

Because . . . well, just because it’s our beloved college basketball, and . . .

Because even though consensus #1 Duke has a bench that would probably be a #6 seed, Coach K’s “best” teams recently have faltered come March.

Because thanks to a rule tweak, The Rick will again be able to call a TO from the bench when Ray Spalding can’t get the ball inbounds.

Because when it’s late, and our eyes are shutting, and we figure it’s time for bed, there will be Bill Walton’s delightfully bloviating non sequiturs to energize us for another little bit.

Because of Monmouth’s bench.

Because UCLA may be relevant again — may — and Walton will be in the house to tell us if they’re not.

Because even though they are defending champs, Villanova will still be somewhat under the radar and might legitimately repeat.

Because Dana Altman’s Phil Knight-uniformed Oregon Ducks could quack the loudest come tournament time . . . if Dillon Brooks foot fully heals.

Because Sean Miller’s Arizona Wildcats, despite the annual hype that this is their year, won’t make the Final Four . . . again.

Because ditto Mark Few’s Gonzaga Bulldogs.

Because my Louisville Cardinals, who will be good this season but a legit national contenda next under The Rick’s 2 Year Plan, have a pre-league schedule that includes a trip to Grand Canyon, Indiana, Purdue, Kentucky, probably Wichita State on Thanksgiving Day and perhaps, Michigan State.

Because Grayson Allen will surely do something skanky early on, thus verifying our loathing for the rest of the season.

Because the SEC will yet again, as it most usually is, be a Big Blue dominant ho hum league.

Because the ever irreverent Mark Titus shall be covering the landscape at The Ringer.

Because Mark Gottfried’s super talented North Carolina State Wolfpack will again be the season’s major underachiever.

Because the Ivy League will have its first conference tourney.

Because the “new” Big East is pretty damn cool, even though it doesn’t get talked about much.

Because, thanks to competition for The World Wide Leader, there are lots of big boy match ups in November and December, way more than there used to be. Even Syracuse ventures away from the Carrier Dome for early tilts at South Carolina, at Wisconsin, and against UConn in the Garden.

Because Thomas Bryant returned to don those candy stripped warmups for another season.

Because UVa, boring and steady as it plays, will again be good and heralded and fail to make the Final Four.

Because the race is still on between Coach Cal and The Rick, to see which wins their next national crown first.

Because my town Louisville — home to the Kentucky Derby and Muhammed Ali and the Hot Brown and Impellizzeri’s Pizza — despite all the excitement of the ascendancy and success of Louisville football and Lamar Jackson’s Heisman run, has always been, is now, and forever shall be a town for hoopaholics, the epicenter of college basketball.

Can I get an Amen?

— Seedy K


2 thoughts on “Hoopaholic’s Gazette: Tipoff Has Arrived

  1. To your last statement, I had a young man ask me, “What is Freedom Hall?” as we drove down Phillips Lane. The joy that came with answering that question made my day as I got to explain Freedom Hall’s importance in the history of NCAA basketball and watch the disbelief and then pride this young man displayed. Freedom Hall should be admitted to the basketball HOF as one of its most important players.

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