Off The Boards by Jack Scheuer – January 24, 2018 Edition

Off The Boards

By Jack Scheuer

January 24, 2018 Edition

It seem like it was not very long ago that  many of the most successful teams had a major force at the center position.

Not any more.  For some reason, the dominant big man is slowly disappearing. Villanova, the #1 team in the country uses six talented players to attain it’s ranking, none of whom could be called post players. The same is basically  true among the rest of the top ten.  Some have decent big men, but they are not the stars leading the way.  Duke has 6-11 Marvin Bagley III, a major talent, but he also takes 3-pointers, and plays wherever he wants.  The influx of tall foreign players is probably one reason for the absence of the productive big man in the middle.  Many of them are very mobile, and can also shoot from outside. Bottom line: The game is changing, and maybe for the better.

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Coming into this season, Kentucky is the all-time leader in wins ( 2,237) among Division 1 teams, followed closely by Kansas, North Carolina and Duke. Temple was #5 with 1,886 victories, while the Penn total, 1,747, came in at # 19.

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You’re getting old department: Max Hazzard is the leading three-point shooter for Cal-Irvine.  He is the grandson of Walt, the Overbrook High grad who was an All-American at UCLA  and had a solid NBA career.

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Trivia Time: Since 1950, which Saint Joseph’s player was the highest pick in the NBA draft?  Answer at the end of the column.

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Be honest now, who, among all you Hoop fans out there, thought that T.J. McConnell was going to be a productive NBA player?  If you raised your hand I don’t believe you; unless you’re a relative.

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This and That: Vermont is one of those mid-majors who none of the big boys will want to play in the tournament.  Good players and well-coached….South Carolina coach Sgt. Frank Martin has not mellowed one bit.  That look when he’s upset is just plain scary….Penn is looking like a real threat in the Ivy.  Coach Donahue has his boys playing well….Temple faces a real challenge tonight at # 9 Cincinnati. The Bearcats have won 10 in a row, and 36  straight at home…. Top-ranked Villanova is off until Sunday when they visit Marquette.  That one won’t be easy…. Not many better two-way players in the country than West Virginia’s Devon Carter…. Ryan Arcidiacono, called up from the G-League, is getting some minutes with the Chicago Bulls…. Another Boards silly question: What are the 2 words most used by players during a game?( No profanity,please).  Answer: “Let’s go.”

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Answer to Trivia Time : Mike Bantom was the 9th pick by Phoenix in the 1973 draft.


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