Thursday, March 29, 2007

If Dana Leaves....

This sucks. Plain and simple. I love being on vacation but I'm stuck in Philly when I really want to be back in Omaha watching this Dana Altman to Iowa story unfold. I have said on the air a lot that I felt like the one job that Dana would take would be Iowa. I was told by a very reliable source a week ago that Dana would NOT take the job. Thus, I pushed that line on air. That same source flipped less than 24 hours later.

To me, Dana to Iowa seems like a done deal now. The search committee has pulled their number from their website. Both AD Gary Barta and Dana will be in Atlanta for the Final Four and I would expect a deal being finalized this weekend. Nobody knows except Dana himself though. I wonder if he enjoys F'ing with everyone :). Silence is the best way to freak everyone out.

If Dana does leave, lets hope he doesn't pull a Steve Alford. The Jays' fans should at least begin to prepare themselves for life without the best coach that the university has ever seen. I have often fought the line that I am a Bluejay fan. However, I will never fight perception that I am a Dana Altman fan. I am proud to say that I am. But the cupboard is NOT empty next year and if you look at coaches like Tubby Smith going to Minnesota, getting a good coach to come to Omaha won't be hard to do. A million bucks in Omaha goes a lot farther than say, here in Philly. Oh, and 17,000 a night is something the Sixers would love to boast. Lots of coaches will be interested in the job if it does open up, especially with 4 new coaches in the Valley already. (BTW - Congrats to Coach McKenna on the Indy St. gig. I hope he can recruit there. Tough job)

Here are the large name Head Coaches that I have been around in my career before Dana - John Calipari, Bruiser Flint, Pete Guillen, and Mike Gottfried. Not one of them was as interesting to watch coach as Dana. Sure, they all had their ways of being successful but Coach Altman has the knack of taking a C+ player and making them an A. That is a true coach. Some are killer recruiters (Cal), some are great motivators (Guillen), some can capture lightning in a bottle (Gottfried) and some are growing into themselves still (Flint) but I've never seen anyone be able to put it all together like Coach Dana Altman.

Steve Alford's departure was as messy as it gets. If you read the above article, the fact that Alford was trying to get his recruits to go with him to New Mexico just goes to show you that he wasn't an Iowa guy. That was something that Coach Greg McDermott pointed out in himself during his introductory press conference at Iowa St. Well, Dana might be from Nebraska but his ability to recruit players in Iowa is well documented. I don't expect him to try to get Keyton Walker or P'Allen Stinnet to follow him though. For one, it's illegal but moreso, he loves Creighton and would want to see the program continue it's winning ways.

I need to go find Kyle Korver tonight and get his read on Dana. I wonder if he could recruit him to stay? I'm sure Kaleb would prefer it given the fact that he'll be a Jay next year.

On Monday, I'll be back on the air in Omaha and I hope I'm not reporting that Coach has left. But if I am, there should not be any anger or sadness. The man built the castle and it's his right if he wants to move on to something new. He's earned it. I hope that Creighton will name the court next year after Dana for what he did. He's earned it. I hope the fans remember what he did and get behind the team as they will need it next year. They've earned it.

Change is never fun to go through but maybe it's best for all. Again, I hope the Dana Altman reign isn't ending but something in me is saying that it is. I know the Jays just got 2 commits from JuCo guards who were told by Dana that he was staying. That's recruiting work your ass off at your current job until there is a new boss to work for. Nothing dirty about it - just the way it is.

If it is over - I'd just like to wish the man the best and I hope he takes Iowa to great heights. I don't believe the Iowa fans deserve a coach like Dana Altman but they just might get one. For those who are saying getting Dana isn't a home run - you are sadly mistaken. If Barta gets him, put him in the Big Papi vs. Yankees in 2004 ALCS category of performances.

Will the Creighton Head Coaching Search begin on Monday?? Stay tuned.....

Monday, March 26, 2007

Kobe, Better Than MJ? WHAT?!

Is Kobe Bryant better than MJ? The very question is stunning to me.

Kobe Bryant hasn’t won an MVP and won't.

Kobe Bryant hasn’t even PLAYED in an NBA Finals without Shaq's help.

Kobe Bryant isn't a team player. He's a selfish scorer who was once accused of raping a girl in Colorado.

And this chick is trying to tell ME that Kobe is a better player than Michael Jordan?

What the hell is it with woman sports writers? Do they think this crap up just to get people to read because they are in a man’s forum? Is ESPN Page 2 dying that fast? I know the whole thing can’t be on Bill Simmons’ head but if they are really paying this chick $200K/yr to write this crap – then the firing of the guy who used run was totally justified.

Michael Jordan was the best player in the league during his prime – no debate, no argument, no doubt. Can you say the same thing about Kobe? I’d think not. Is he better than Dwayne Wade when he’s 100%? Wade can win with Shaq too and has shown his ability to dominate. Is he better than Tim Duncan? At least he’s got multiple rings. Whatever happened to making your team better around you? I’d take Steve Nash in that department over Kobe any day of the week.

So Kobe scored 50 points in 4 straight games. Cool. Nice work. Do I care? Not really. Not like Mike dropping 63 in the PLAYOFFS on the road at the GARDEN vs. BIRD! Kobe would be the NBA's A-Rod if it wasn't for the rings that Shaq got him. Talk to me when he actually wins one without the help of a Hall of Fame big man. Mike’s got 6 with guys named Purdue and Cartwright.

So Mike didn’t have a great marriage. A lot of folks in this country haven’t been happily ever after, especially athletes. I can only name a few who have been accused a violent sex act only to never get it to trial because the witness decided not to testify. But, you know, Kobe did nothing wrong. And that rock the size of Pluto he bought his wife was because he was so innocent.

The NBA is tougher now than it was when Mike played? Are you serious? Really? That’s tough to prove with guys like Karl Malone and John Stockton standing in the Bulls way every year. Remember, Mike did play with guys named Bird and Magic. Where are those game changing type of players in this version NBA? I don’t care that 7 footers weren’t shooting 3’s back then. How many teams right now have 3 Hall of Famers in the starting line up? The Celtics did when MJ played.

This argument is a complete joke. Kobe Bryant is hated by a lot of fans and justifiably so. He’s the new Scottie Pippen. Scottie thought he was the reason why the Bulls won and thought that when got free of Mike, the banners would fly up. How’d that go for ya Portland? Sure, Kobe played a big role in winning 3 rings with the Lakers but we’ve seen what the Lakers look like with Kobe alone. Good team, not great.

Better than Mike? Hold your tongue Ms. Hill or at least pick it up off the floor to hide the fact that you think he’s hot and you are too short minded to remember his Airness and all he did in the League.

Kobe works for the company Mike built into a basketball power. And Kobe is still just trying to fill the void left by the best player ever. Too bad he won’t ever do it.

Vacation Thoughts...

One of the unfortunate situations of being in a long distance relationship is the fact that you often can’t take vacation at the same time. I’m off this week in Philly. She’ll be off for a week in April and with me in Omaha for it. So she is working this week and leaving me alone on the 29th floor of her building to do nothing but think. Here are some of my thoughts that are rolling around my head.

1. This Dana Altman to Iowa story is making me watch my phone. Whenever someone from Omaha calls me – I jump to answer it. My girlfriend is not enjoying this current behavior trait. She wants it over. I too, want to know but we aren’t going to know for a while. My prediction – Dana won’t go because he won’t deal with the Barta Search Committee.

2. Arkansas firing Stan Heath is just another example as to why the NCAA Selection Committee was nuts to put them the Dance. If your own fan base and AD don’t believe the team is a good – why in the hell did they? Remember – they got an AT LARGE bid after LOSING the SEC Championship game. Still can’t believe that one. Poor Drexel.

3. How long will it be until Doc Sadler is forced to answer the question as to whether or not he is interested in going to Fayetteville? Over/Under is one week.

4. Dice-K is going to be sick this year. I’m watching this AMAZING (kidding) spring training game between the Reds and the Red Sox on ESPN (0-0 in the 7th) and the guy is going to kill this year if he stays healthy. He had a bad game – and didn’t give up a run. He was pissed at the walks but just kept gridding. Then, after pitching, he ran the warning track like a man without arms. (Had to see it to get it). Can’t wait for Opening Day and then maybe April 4th in KC for his debut. Also, I'm going to the Red Sox vs. Philly game on Saturday here at Citizens Bank Park. 2 Sox games around my Birthday - I'll take that :)

5. This hair "bet" between WWE’s Vince McMahon and Donald Trump seems to me like a ploy to allow Donald to finally go bald. They both have picked wrestlers and loser has to shave his head. As a man who is losing his hair, I get the fear of the dome but if nature wants it that way – you can only do so much to stop it. Donald is a millionaire and he couldn’t prevent it. So he’s lying to himself about it. Not literally, but the comb over is awful. I think he knows the lie now after the Rosie fight. Remember when she took her hair and mocked the comb-over on The View? I think that’s when he snapped and got with WWE to do this “bet”. A Bet? Are you kidding? This is FAKE sports. The outcome is KNOWN! Why would anyone believe that this isn’t a set up. I think Donald wants to go Mr. Clean but doesn’t want to do it without a reason and cameras watching.

6. How bad is afternoon television? I mean seriously, who is entertained by E, Judge Joe Brown, the Price is Right etc. There is nothing on….glad to be in the afternoons and employed.

7. More to come as this vacation goes :)

Friday, March 23, 2007

SOLD OUT in less than 72 hours!!

The Big Show Big Bus to KC for my birthday is SOLD OUT! Thanks to everyone who bought tickets and we'll see you on the 4th!! Go Red Sox

Big Show for Friday

- KU vs. SIU
- Tx A+M vs. Memphis
- Ohio St. vs. Tenn
- Dana to Iowa?
- Keller charged
- Purify is fat
- Games tonight

2:30 - Gary Dolphin Voice of the Hawkeyes
4 pm - Fitzy's opening day preview
5 pm - Steve Ryan

Tonight! The Letter Club from 7 to 9 for NCAA games

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Big Show For Thursday

- Steve Alford to New Mexico
- First Day of Pratice QB get worked
- Titus Brothers leaves NU
- Alex Gordon will start at 3rd for Royals
- DirecTV deal heads to Congress
- DUI for Tony LaRussa
- Matt Schaub is a Texan
- NCAA tourney Games

2:30 - Joe O'Neil Voice of the Lobos KKOB
3 pm - Sound of Sam Keller Post practice
3:30 - Kristin Peck Cox Cable spokesperson
4:30 - Look Around the Big 12 Spring Football
5:30 - DREAM Chairman Steve Warren in Studio

LIVE at The Letter Club from 7 to 9 tonight for NCAA games

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Red Sox v Royals Birthday Bash for Matt

On April 4th - Matt turns 30! As luck would have it - The Red Sox and Royals are playing in KC. So Big Sports 590 is giving you a chance to go see the best team in baseball play at Kauffman :). We'll leave from Omaha on Wednesday the 4th during the midday and come back that night.

For just $59 - you will receive one ticket to the game and seat on the Big Show Big Bus to KC. You'll be given food and drink on the way down and we'll bring you back to Omaha afterwards.

To Sign up - Call Best Fare for their Premium Sports Tour at 397-0662 or 1-800-56-Tours

We are LIMITED for seats on this trip!!! First come first serve!!!

We'll see you on the 4th!!

Big Show for Wednesday

- Yesterday's NU Press Conference
- DirecTV might not get exclusive Baseball rights
- Tom Davis done at Drake
- Gil Meche speaks about contract
- Ozzie being Ozzie
- Sports and Politics clash again

4:30 - Steve Lappas CSTV
5 pm- Steve Ryan

chasing Terry Douglas GI Independent

Funny Comeback for the 2007 Baller....

There might be no "I" in Team....But there sure is in wIn :)

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Big Show for Tuesday

- Iowa St's Mike Taylor Arrested
- Kevin Durant to go pro?
- Is Nebraska going to play at the Qwest?
- Alford to New Mexico?
- Iowa protected coaches on line
- NBA players get $106/day on the road

2:30 - Chip Brown Dallas Morning News
3 pm - Bill Callahan's Spring Press Conference
4 pm - Pat Hardy Iowa City Press Citizen
4:45 - Dana Altman - Creighton Head Coach
5 pm - Tim Jankovich New Ill. St. Coach

Monday, March 19, 2007

Big Show for Monday

- Jays season over
- Dana's future
- SIU, George Mason type run?
- How bout the ACC and Big 10!
- Tx out, A+M into Sweet 16
- Spring Football for Nebraska

2:30 - Pat Forde
3:45 - Brian Fish Creighton Asst. Coach
5:00 - Big Show Big 5 at 5
5:15 - Steve Ryan

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Big Boys Need To Go....

Disclaimer - I'm writing this as I watch KU vs. UK (other games are USC vs. Texas and Memphis vs. Nevada).

After Selection Sunday, I told you that there was a conspiracy involving the Committee and CBS. The President of CBS Sports said that they preferred to see the Big Boys in the Final Four and that Cinderella didn't help ratings. After the performance of the 2 top conference in terms of bids - I believe my opinion was confirmed.

The ACC got 7 teams in. After the first week - only No. 1 UNC is left. The Big 10 got 6. The only team left is No. 1 seed Ohio St. (who nearly got beat by Xavier). That is pathetic. The MVC got 2 teams in - they've got 1 left. The WAC got 2 teams in...and they might have 2 teams left in if Nevada can beat Memphis! Even Billy Packard had to admit that those 2 conferences were embarrassed this year.

The Big 10 was a bad conference this year. We knew it. The Committee knew it but CBS wanted Purdue, Illinois etc in the dance over the mid-major. Well, now the Mid-Major has teams like UNLV, Bulter and SIU in the Sweet Sixteen. When you give them a chance, they do damage. VCU beat Duke. Winthrop beat Notre Dame. Eventhough they lost to a major - Standford took a bid away from a Mid-Major and then got beat by 20.

Parity in college basketball has now become a major problem for CBS. They don't like it. If the BCS was like this - Fox would flip out. Too much money is at stake for the uncertainty of sports. After the first round- most games were decided by 9 points or more. The favorites won in the first round in boring fashion. Not good for ratings. In round 2 - the Mid-Major came to play and sent some big boys home - More bad news for CBS.

And now Texas and attention grabber Kevin Durant are losing by 13 to USC at the 5 minute mark of the first half. This is shaping up to give the folks over at CBS nightmares. I'll gladly turn out the light.

2006-2007 Year in Review

As I said on the air during the final post game - I hate the end of the basketball season. When you do pre and post game shows beginning with football in early September, it's odd when it ends in mid-March. I just realized that today was my first day off in a month but I guess that means I loved what I was doing too much to notice.

Here is my review of the 2006-2007 Bluejay basketball season:

Let's start where it ended - New Orleans and the overtime loss to Nevada. I picked Nevada to win the game because I didn't think the Jays could keep up with the Wolfpack in the scoring department. I was right. Once the game got into the 70's - they were in trouble. They needed a game in the upper 50's, lower 60's and they had that before the OT. Fazekas vs. AT = Wash. Nate vs. Kemp = Kemp. Sessions vs. Porter = Sessions THUS 77-71 win for Nevada.

I love Dana Altman, yet when you lose, there are things to talk about. The only issue I have with the game plan was the call to give the ball to Nate Funk again at the end of regulation. He didn't do it vs. Wichita, didn't convert vs. SIU and now he didn't get it done in the NCAA tournament. EVERYONE in the New Orleans arena knew what was coming including Coach Mark Fox of Nevada. Did they foul? Yes. Is this the tournament and the whistle goes away unless you draw blood - Yup.

Anthony Tolliver was a First Team ALL MVC selection. Yet he didn't get one end of game look this year. Unlike last year vs. Wichita St at home, the A-Train wasn't given the chance to be the hero. I wish Dana trusted him more to make a play if Nate's option wasn't available. It was sink or swim with the Jays best player and he was following orders. I get the call but I just wish AT was given the chance to make a play given the fact that the D was all over Nate.

2006-2007 ended in a game that was symbolic of the year. Competitive, aggressive play that came up just a bit short on the national level. The lack of size and depth came back to hurt the Jays yet a great coach kept them in the game right to the end. Dana Altman can't make shots for Dane Watts. He can't rebound for Nick Porter and he can't make the officials call a foul at the end of the game. All he can do is put his players in the best position possible and he did that on Friday and all year long. Anyone who can't see that is just blind. The coach can only do so much and ultimately, the players have to make plays. Going 0 for 8 on wide open 3's is not Dana's fault.

What would this team have looked like with Ty Morrison playing 15 minutes a game? What would have happened if Josh Dotzler didn't regress faster than any player I have ever seen? What would have happened if the team had a better 3 point shooter who could get his own shot unlike Nick Bahe? They were missing key components of a successful team. However, defense and rebounding kept the team in many games including the NCAA tournament loss to Nevada. You can question their skill but not their heart.

Overall, it was a roller coaster of a year that ended where everyone expected the Jays to end up. The Big Dance is a major accomplishment yet the fans want more and I don't blame them. For CU to become the next Gonzaga or even Nevada - they have to win in March. Dana is now 2-8 and the losses have been heart breaking. Being the higher seed and losing to Central Michigan, the end of game dunk win for West Virginia and now the Overtime loss to Nevada - the Jays seem to be just on the edge ever single year. This is not Dana Altman's fault - this is basketball and sports in general. Eventually, this team will get the breaks but they need better players to make their own breaks. I think they are on the way.

The Jays all of a sudden need a point guard. Josh Dotzler is not the answer and has lost all confidence in his game. Coach Altman has stuck with Josh for long enough. I know he loves Josh but Dana's system just doesn't work without a solid player at the point. I would expect the team to go after a JC point guard to be able to fill the void by the middle of next season.

Kenny Lawson, Dane Watts, and Keyton Walker will roam the post and the Jays will have some depth there unlike this year. Scorers like Chad Millard, P'Allen Stinnet, and Isaac Miles will try to replace Nate Funk's punch. And the bench will have guys like Kaleb Korver and Pierce Hibma to add some energy. But as you can see...the team will be VERY young and inexperienced. They will need to find leadership and Dane Watts can't let the game vs. Nevada wreck his Senior season.

I will remember the year for the games vs. SIU. The early season swoon and then the recovery. The 4 seniors who lead the team to the MVC Tournament Championship and the celebration in St. Louis. I will remember Dana Altman having to figure out how to win without a point guard and no help off the bench. The Qwest Center filled up with white for Wichita and the noise they made at the end of the game. Jobber's Canyon pre and post game shows and road trips to Des Moines, St. Louis and New Orleans. Year 2, overall, was a blast.

There won't be nearly the buzz for next year that Omaha experienced this year. However, by the end of next year - another NCAA tournament appearance isn't crazy to think about when you look at the rest of MVC. It will be a more interesting team to watch with all the questions going into the year but it's time to start over and rebuild around a new set of Jays.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Day 1 and Day 2 Recap From New Orleans

If you've been listening at all to Todd and Tyler or Big Sports 590 over the past few days, you probably heard a lot about our 15 and half hour drive from Omaha to New Orleans on Wednesday. I haven't been back to the south since I left Alabama in April of 2005 so I've enjoy the trip back down memory lane. The drive, for the most part, was uneventful. We left at 8 am and rolled up at 11:30 pm.

As for sleeping on the floor - not so fun but easier the 2nd night, I'll explain that in a sec.

Day 2 was fun because we got the whole thing started down here. All 8 teams were required to practice for 40 minutes in the New Orleans Arena in front of the media and fans. It was really fun to see the different coaches and how they run their systems. Billy Donovan vs. Lute Olsen, Dana Altman vs. John Calipari, Matt Painter vs. who ever the hell coaches Jackson St. As you would expect - Dana's practice was VERY structured and up tempo. The guys looked sharp but Florida is SICK! They are big, strong, and fast.

The show was the show but then we went out. The French Quarter is the adult playground that you hear about. This is my 3rd trip down here and every time - Bourbon Street doesn't disappoint. Most of the stuff we did I won't write on here :). Let's just say we had fun last night. I slept better on night 2 - well, more like I passed out. Shots, beer and Hurricanes will knock you around down here :).

Here's what we are hearing down here about the game vs. the Wolfpack. Anthony Tolliver might be in the star of the game and a big story at the end of the day. We've heard that the Jays' coaches believe that the post players of NeVADa don't play defense very well and don't match up with him. UNLV had a post player very much like AT and that guy killed them. A-Train is going to touch the ball maybe 80 to 85% of the time on offense. Nate Funk talked like a player with a lot confidence and all 3 seniors had a look in their eye that was very similar to St. Louis. I think they understand what's at stake and I wouldn't expect them to go out without a fight.

Let's see what happens with the Jays....I picked NeVADa on the official bracket....

Thursday, March 15, 2007

WiFi Rip Off

The NCAA is charging $30 per day for wireless at the arena. So I won't be posting updates like I was at the Missouri Valley Tournament. But I will but posting a ful game post game update on the blog. Sorry, but this whole trip is on my dime - well, expect for what Travis is letting me save money on :).

Should be fun tomorrow.

Nothing Funky with Tickets to NCAA

A lot has been made of the NCAA First Round coming to Omaha in 2008 and the availability of the tickets for the event at Qwest Center Omaha. My show and email have been buzzing, Channel 6 did a story using the audio from my show, and message boards have been blasting back and forth on whether or not Creighton acted fairly in their selling of tickets to the event. Before I give my opinion again, let’s first state the FACTS.

-The NCAA allows the host institution – Creighton University – the right to offer tickets to their season ticket holders before the general public was allowed to buy tickets.
-The NCAA set a deadline of March 1 for Creighton’s season ticket holder pre-buy for the event. They took 4,000 tickets for the schools attending and allowed the rest to be sold as CU wanted.
-According to TJ Isascs, Ticket Manager for CU, Creighton allowed ticket holders to buy the same number of NCAA tickets as they bought season tickets for 2007. They had a deadline of Feb 15th to do so and were sent a postcard to remind them of the deadline.
-After Feb 15th, CU still had time before the NCAA issued deadline and had tickets remaining to the event. They then sent out another postcard to inform their ticket holders of the availability of those tickets. This time, they allowed their ticket holders to buy as many tickets as they wanted which sold out the Qwest Center.
-ALL tickets holders for CU had this option. Season tickets for the Jays start at around $125 bucks per ticket for 18 games. NCAA tickets were $168 per ticket for 6 games.
-There was nothing wrong with what CU did and completely within the rules of the NCAA.

Now that we’ve got the facts – let’s ask Tulane if they would like to have the same situation as Creighton has right now, 1 YEAR before they host. Tulane still has tickets available 2 days before their regional pod games. The Qwest Center sits 17,000 – The New Orleans Arena sits 18,000. This is not wrong, unfair, discriminatory, or disrespectful – this is life. People who spend money with Creighton could have decided not to buy – but they chose to purchase tickets. It’s amazing that one year prior to the event, the people of OMAHA, who are primarily Bluejay fans, stepped up to support the Regional.

If you aren’t a Creighton fan, well, sorry – maybe you should be if you want the chance to go to the NCAA basketball events at the Jays home arena. And NO – it was not CU’s job to tell the public that buying season tickets would let you get NCAA tickets. You would then run the risk of empty seats all year at the Qwest for home games.

Look people, I wanted front row for Billy Joel but didn’t get them. I paid as much as the guy who is in the front row but I got the seats that I got because of when I was allowed to buy the tickets. I bet a lot of you who wanted to go couldn’t go. That’s life folks.

It’s ridiculous to start talking about tax payer money that went into the Qwest Center. a Without CU running the event and asking for the event to be held with the help of the Missouri Valley Conference – the event wouldn’t have ever come to Omaha. If Nebraska fans want the same option, have NU offer up the Devaney Center and let’s see what the NCAA thinks about it. My guess is that they wouldn’t want to go near it. Every host school gets the same option as Creighton got this year. There was nothing out of the ordinary except the fact that it sold out very quickly. The Qwest Center is the home of the Bluejays and their fans when it comes to basketball….it’s about time everyone gets that message. And with the Qwest being their home arena – they get perks.

Yet, they weren’t the only one’s who could buy tickets. Qwest Center suite holders also could buy and if you were a special client to the Qwest – you also could buy tickets. This is what the NCAA tournament has become – the No. 2 sporting event in the country behind the Super Bowl. Tickets sell out as fast as the Super Bowl and corporations buy a large bulk when they can.

The little guy is NOT getting screwed here. You who is? Husker fans. And that’s why so many people are bitching about this. Husker fans believe they are entitled to whatever they want because that is the way it has been in this state for years. Memorial Stadium sells out every game with passionate fans who love their football. Well, Omaha is filled with passionate Bluejay fans who love their basketball. I applaud the fact that they stepped up and showed what Omaha does when the NCAA comes to town.

Do NOT complain about the double deadline. Would people still be complaining if they sold out before March 1 without the Feb 15th deadline? Yes, of course they would be because they are shut out regardless. Since when does a business care about what is fair or not? They want to sell tickets – and don’t really care who buys the tickets as long as they move. I don’t see Nebraska worrying about who is getting access to their tickets and even if you do get a chance to buy tickets – you have to be a donor. You didn’t have to be a donor to CU to get tickets – simply a season ticket holder. A person could have bought upper bowl season tickets without any donation to CU.

This is amazing thing for Creighton and Omaha to be proud of. If you don’t think so – just ask Tulane.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

My Final Bracket

So I can't post my bracket on here in exact here it is

Winners in Round 1:
Florida, AZ, ODU, MD, Winthrop, Oregon, UNLV, Wisconsin, KU, UK, V Tech, SIU, VCU, PITT, Gonzaga, UCLA, UNC, Mich St, Ark, TX, Vandy, Washington St, Texas Tech, Gtown, Ohio St, Xavier, Long Beach, UVa, Louisville, Texas A-M, Nevada, Memphis

Winners in Round 2:
Fl, ODU, Oregon, Wisconsin, KU, SIU, PITT, UCLA, Louisville, Nevada, UVA, Ohio St, Vandy, Gtown, UNC, Tx

Winners in Round 3:
Florida, Oregon, Kansas, Pitt, Nevada, Ohio St., GTown, TX

Winners in Round 4:
Florida, Kansas, Gtown, Ohio St.

Winners in Round 5:
Kansas, Gtown

National Champ: Kansas

Let's see if I'm right or not. Normally - Half the final 4. Half the final 2 - but I'm good at getting the National Champ....We'll see. Talk to you from New Orleans on Thursday.

Nice Win By UMass Tonight!

Nice to see the Minutemen win a big game under Travis Ford! 89-87 in OT over Alabama in the NIT. First time I've watched a whole UMass game and been proud of the effort since the late 90's.....
Great to see the Mullins Center rockin' too. I remember seeing Marcus Camby kill Tim Duncan in the late 90's. Do they have a run to New York? We'll find out next as they have go to West Virginia. Good Start to the post season runs for Coach Ford.
On the complete opposite the HELL did Oklahoma St. lose to Marist! At HOME 67-64! Man- have you seen a worse coaching job than what Sean Sutton did this year? 15-1 and then the bottom just fell out. His team just quit on him, plain and simple. A first round loss at home to a non-conference team in the NIT! Wow.....the Pokes can't be happy with Year 1 of the Son.

Big Show for Tuesday

- CBS admits they don't like Cinderella
- Play in Game tonight - Does Niagra belong in it?
- Expanding the Tourney? Coaches like idea
- Jays Chances for advancing
- Rocky busted for HGH possession

2:30 - Mike DeCoursey Sporting News
3 pm - Jerry Palm
4 pm - Lee Sterling Paramount Sports
4:30 - Mark Fox Head Coach of Nevada
5 pm - Rodney Watson - SIU Asst. Coach
5:30 - Robert Perea WolfPack Beat Writer

Ben's Brainwashing Is Good :)

Go Red Sox.....

Monday, March 12, 2007

Big Show for Monday

- Jays draw
- Tourney Snubs
- Mid-Major gets screwed
- Toughest Draw
- Graduation rates of colleges

3 pm - Doug Elgin MVC Commish
3:30 - Jeff Goodman
4 pm - Dana Altman - Jays Head Coach
5 pm - Big Show Big 5 at 5
5:30 - Brian Fish Jay asst. who knows Coach Mark Fox of Nevada

Sunday, March 11, 2007


So what the hell did we learn today from the NCAA Selection Committee? Don't play in a Non-BCS conference. There was an all out attack on the Mid-Majors today and it wasn't just who was in and who was out.

Drexel got ripped off. There is no debating that. I feel so bad for Bruiser Flint because the only thing the Dragons did wrong was lose twice to ODU. Sure they lost to Rider and William and Mary but Texas Tech lost to Nebraska at home and they got in.

However, that isn't what the real joke was today. How about No. 24 Creighton as a 10 seed vs. No. 13 Nevada as a 7 seed! Right, that makes sense. How about Butler as a 5 seed vs. 12 seed ODU - that's a bracketbuster game - not a first round match up! Or BYU vs. Xavier? Can we get more Middies to knock each out of the BCS Invitational so we don't have to worry about another George Mason to the Final Four? "Hey, Committee - let's see how many of these annoying little guys we can get rid of before the 2nd weekend!"

It seems like the Committee was told to make sure that the little guy doesn't hurt the pocket books of the Big Guys. It is really, really sad to look at these stats:

3 years ago = 12 mid major at large bids
2 years ago = 9 mid major at large bids
last year = 8 mid major at large bids (Final Four George Mason)
this year = 6 mid major at large bids

The numbers don't lie...the more competitive the Mid-Majors have become - the smaller the number of teams are getting in! Looks like they don't want the new guys at the party any more. They were a cute story but once they started taking home the pretty girls - the upper class man started to throw their weight around.

Everyone who loves the mid-major should pull hard for the winner of Bulter/ODU, CU/Nevada and BYU/Xavier to knock out a BIG seed. The SIU bandwagon needs to be full as well but they will need company in order to prevent the Billy Packard "one team" brush off.

It was an all out assault on the Mid Major today. No to Drexel but yes to ARKANSAS!!Standford, and Illinois? That is ridiculous. I hope and pray a 16 seed beats a 1 this year....Just not Florida :)

Friday, March 9, 2007

Big Show for Friday

- Nebraska loses in Big 12 tourney
- Doc says he's staying at NU
- Jays and Selection Sunday
- MVC vs. CAA
- Grant Winstrom released by Seattle
- Upsets in Conf. Tourney's
- Where should Duke be seeded?

2:30 - Rulon Gardner - Olympian in plane crash
3:00 - Gary Parrish
3:30 - Jim Larranga HC of George Mason
4:00 - Mike Florio
4:30 - Anthony Grant HC of VCU
5:00 - Bruiser Flint HC of Drexel
5:30 - Barry Hinson replay of Missouri St. HC

Remember - the show is now podcasted at

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Big Show for Thursday

- Nebraska at Big 12 Tourney
- NU to the NIT?
- Tom's Got ANOTHER one on the way!
- Manning explaining party payment
- Husker Pro Day from yesterday
- Red Sox fans need to unite vs. Direct TV!
- Is Dick Vitale a Hall of Famer?

2:30 - Van Coleman
4 pm - Scott Wright
5 pm - Gene Keady - Coaching Legend on NIT board

If you miss any of the show for
entire show up after we are done...

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Was Barry Talking about Himself?

Barry Hinson said on the show that Valley coaches are going to get raid.....from a paper in New Mexico:

Shut out: It's tough to get a coach to talk jobs while the season is still playing out - especially in the Missouri Valley Conference.
The office assistant of Wichita State coach Mark Turgeon said the seventh-year Shockers coach won't address any consideration for the New Mexico job until season's end.
Toby Baldwin, attorney for Missouri State coach Barry Hinson, said the same.
Turgeon guided the Shockers to NCAA Tournament appearances in 2005 and 2006, including the Sweet 16 last season.


It's up! :) :) :)

The link of will be up soon but until then - bookmark the above link!!!

Big Show for Wednesday

- New Rules - You Have to Play on a neutral floor!
- Doc to Ark? Stan Heath looks like he's out
- Barta says NO to firing Alford
- Nike's new uni's are VERY interesting
- Huskers Coaches go to Auburn for info
- Green gone from KC
- Rocker using HGH
- Boise St. QB on cover of EA Sports game

3 pm - Nick Athon
4 pm - Bo Mattinly KNWA Ark TV reporter

Chasing - Van Coleman for Neb BB recruiting

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

One Fans Pics of Arch Madness - Great Song!

U2 - my favorite band....Arch Madness was a lot of fun.

Pod Casting is VERY CLOSE!

This week - we should be launching Pod Casting for the Show!!! You will be able to listen to the entire show right after we are off the air. All the interviews, opinions, and conversations on the Big Show will be up off FINALLY. I'll let you know when it's a go for real - but we are about 48 or less from the official launch.

Next up - Streaming....but we'll take this for now.

Changes In The Valley....

On today's show, Barry Hinson - Coach of Missouri St. claimed that more changes are on the way in the MVC for Head Coaches. 3 coaches have already been fired but he didn't say more firings were on the way. Instead, he believes that 2 or more coaches will be hired away by BCS conference schools. This caught the ears of a lot of people who are afraid of Dana Altman leaving CU. I still will maintain that Dana and staff are going nowhere but who might be on the move?

The obvious answer will be Chris Lowery of SIU. At 34, he's a two time MVC coach of the year who has just put SIU into the NCAA tourney for another year and has been ranked a school record 11th in the AP poll at one point this year. Bruce Webber and Matt Painter have both left SIU for Big 10 jobs - would Michigan hire Lowery? I think it would be a great move by them to grab him but they whiffed on the last young, hot named, African American Head Coach that they hired...would Lowery be a big enough splash?

Next would be Jim Les from Bradley who did an amazing job of rebuilding and reforming the Brave attack after the departure of 2 stars last year. The common theme with the first 2 names brought up - they played at their current jobs. That would make a possible suitor have to jack up the price to pry them loose but if they are wanted bad enough - Les or anybody would move on. I really don't know where Jim Les would fit except I know he is a very good coach. Anyone that hired him would get a firey coach who average fans have heard of thanks to last year.

The other option would be Mark Turgeon from Wichita St. However, he just signed a 10 year extension after last year's Sweet Sixteen run. He's from Kansas and I think he dreams of coaching his Jayhawks one day. With the current success of Bill Self - that isn't going to happen anytime soon so I don't expect him to go anywhere. You also have to factor in the 8-10 Valley record this year which would scare away most major programs.

Yet, there is a rumor going around that involves Barry Hinson. 3 coaches fired so far - could there be a 4th? Well, if Missouri St. doesn't make the NCAA tourney again this year - the Bears could make a move. As I type, Wright St. is leading Butler in the Horizon Championship. If that holds, the Horizon would have 2 teams in and the Bears would be out for sure in my opinion. Missouri St. is building a new basketball building and there is a thought that the Bears have gone as high as they are going to go under Barry. I, for one, would be sorry to see Barry go. He's been a wonderful spokesperson for the Valley and true gentlemen towards the Bluejay program.

Last year, the Big 12 changed 6 coaches. This year, the Valley might be around that number after it's all said and done. The Valley wants to be a Big Boy....well, so far, their AD's are acting like it.

PS - We are looking for sponsors for Big Sports 590's coverage of the Bluejay run in the NCAA tournament. If your biz or you know of a biz that would like to be involved in THE story so far in 2007, please email me at . Spread the word around - we need the support of the Jays' fans in order to pull off the proper coverage of the trip to the Dance. Thanks!

Big Show for Tuesday

- Doc Sadler Year 1 in review
- What happened to Okie St.?
- NCAA tourney tickets punched
- Do you blame Coach K for hit?
- Is Alford in trouble at Iowa?
- NFL free agent news

2:30 - Barry Hinson, Missouri st. Head Coach
3 pm - Jerry Palm
4 pm - Pat Hardy, Iowa Press Citizen
5 pm - Mike Baldwin Oklahoman
5:45 - Ahman Green replay

Check Out The Future of College BB Uni's....

VERY interesting...I them better than the tatoo'd arms...

They look kinda cool....but I'm not thrilled with "you can hide a small person in them" shorts...

Monday, March 5, 2007

Coaching Predictions

With all the Altman to Iowa rumors - Here is how I think the big jobs changes in college basketball will go in the offseason:

Let's see how close I am :)

Michigan - Firing Tommy Replacement: Chris Lowery
Iowa - Not firing Alford
Kentucky - Firing Tubby Replacement - Billy Gillispie
Arkansas - Firing Stan Heath - Replacement - Doc Sadler

More thoughts on this later.....

Just my thoughts....could be way wrong but that's just for fun :)

Big Show for Monday

- Jays win the MVC Tourney
- Where are th Jays going in the Dance?
- Ryan Anderson Fight vs. Silas
- Nebraska's season
- UNC vs. Duke Fight

2:30 - Dana Altman Coach of the Jays
3:00 - Ahman Green - New Houston Texan
3:15 - Mark Vandermeer, Voice of the Texans
4 pm - Joe Lunardi, Bracketologist
5pm - Big Show Big 5 at 5
5:30 - Replay of Coach Altman interview

Sunday, March 4, 2007

That Was Fast.....BUZZ Kill

So would Dana Altman go to Iowa? At first glance - I'd say yes. However, I've thought about it for a bit and I don't think it would make sense. I think Coach wants to end his career at Creighton. Maybe I'm nuts - but he has it made at CU. Why would he go to a place like Michigan or Iowa? Money? nope. Happiness? please. National Championship? Ok, but is that what Dana is all about? He has recruited Iowa well but is Iowa a better job? Gary Barta or Bruce? No contest who Dana would rather work for. Life time contract or expectations to compete win right away in the Big Ten?

It's a shame that Dana will have to answer questions about Iowa but Rass got what he wanted....the Rumors beat Dana back to Omaha.

Champs Again....

What a time in St. Louis.

I'm not the best writer, don't pretend to be, so I'm going to be brief here in what I have to say about Nate Funk, A-Train and Nick Porter. It's 9 pm but it feels like 2 am to me. A lot action in 4 days and I'm not even home yet. The Jays just left St. Louis on a flight for Omaha with a trophy in tow and I can only imagine how tired they must be after 3 games in 3 days. Yet, they'll sleep as Champions tonight.

This experience in St. Louis will be a story that I tell my kids about. It started with a blizzard and tornados. A cancelled flight. A drive, with a stranger who I met at the airport the morning of my flight who happened to be Ref, on a closed highway into sunshine. A blow out first win. A convincing win in a must win game. And then a classic win to send the Jays dancing for the 7th time in 9 years over a hated rival. This is why Omaha loves Creighton. And why the people of Omaha love St. Louis. They are always the happiest when they leave the party. Dana Altman is the reason why. The man is simply the best coach I've ever been around.

I went to interview Coach Brian Fish last night at the Sheraton Hotel and walked in to Little Omaha. There were SOOO many Bluejay fans in the lobby, decked in blue, talking basketball. I felt like a Rock Star walking in to so many people who wanted to talk about the Jays with me. It was really nice. Of course, they were partying as they should have been the night before the Championship game. However, there was a aura of confidence over everyone. It was like they KNEW that they were going to win. Not a question. And the players performed like it today.

Some of you might know how I got this next tidbit of info but someone very close to me talked to Kyle Korver today about the win for the Jays. She told me that he watched the game in the trainer's room before the Sixers played tonight. I love pros who still love their college. She told me that Kyle was all smiles talking about the win and Nate's performance. He was very proud to be a Jay today.

I don't know if I will get to see another Jays game in person this year. My station hasn't told me if we are covering the tournament or not (don't flip out, no word yet I said). I may have watched my last game of Nate Funk, Anthony Tolliver, and Nick Porter in person. And if I have, I'm glad the image that I will remember will be Nate's hanging shots in the lane. AT's rebounds over SIU, and Nick Porter putting his head down like a bull and going right at the Saluki's all game long. The 3 headed monster came to life at the right time and they get to raise another banner in Qwest.

St. Louis was a blast for me. More fun than the ACC tournament. More fun than the A-10 Tournament. For this weekend, I'm not ashamed to say that I wanted the Jays to win. They've been through a lot and fought through. Personally, in the brief conversations I've had with Nate, I like him a lot. He's the quiet confident guy that is very easy to get along with. I really hope they get a few wins in the dance. Maybe Nate is this year Patrick O'Bryant.

Congrats to the Jays. I had a blast covering this tournament. I hope you enjoyed the radio shows and the blog entries. Talk to you tomorrow from 2 to 6.

From St. Louis - Goodnight....

PS - no Trav tomorrow but we will replay the whole championship game for those who want to relive the win.

Oh no

Nate just missed 2

I can hear the calls in the post game already....this game is NOT over...those were BIG BIG misses by Nate....64-57 to go with 1:26 to play....

I'm going to close down now...Talk to you in the Post game....

Win or lose.....

61-53 3:29 To Go

UH OH....this place is ROCKING with SIU fans....they are really giving it to the Jays right now. The Jays are looking a bit tired and just trying to hang on....AT just left with a cramp!!! That's not good. His hamstring....

Mullins just got his 5th!!! HUGE 2nd game in a row that's he's fouled out....So 4 on Falker. Miles has 4.

This might turn into a foul shooting contest. Jays have been pretty good so far today but they need to keep it up....Nate just hit an amazing shot and got fouled....

What a crazy atmosphere. SO loud when SIU scores....Jays are trying to hang on. They need to score because SIU is going to come at them with EVERYTHING they got. Need to get some stops - Getting worn out.....

Largest crowd ever to watch basketball at Scott Trade Center - 22,612 - Total attendance 85,074!! 20K more than last year!

50-36 7:46 to go....

Well that was an interesting stretch.

Foul trouble. Falker and Green have 4. Miles has 4.

Nick Porter told the crowd to get up and then he took it to the rim and got fouled. SIU is getting frustrated and I'll admit - rightfully so. Nick Porter got the 4th on Falker with a offensive wrap around move...bad call. Jays will take it.

This is where Dana goes into the prevent Offense....Hold the ball and make them foul. The Jays are 2 fouls away from the double bonus. With the way the game is being called - I'd say this is shaping up exactly how Coach hoped.

SIU has been WAY off this off - only 2 FG's!!! They were 12-14 the last time they played in the 2nd. Still time for the Dogs....

43-34 11:55 to go....

This is a crucial time for SIU. They need to start hitting 3's. They killed the Jays in the 2nd half in Carbondale but they are NOT hitting shots. 1 three in the second so far.

The Jays can't go into the Altman Weave and Kill yet...they need to score more. SIU's offense can put up points if they get stops. AT, Nate and Nick - this is your time. Gut Check time....they all look a little tired....last 2 Nate shots were front rim short.....

But they are up by 9....only a point made up since last dead ball comes the key stretch!

43-32 12:51 to go...timeout Jays

Mullins with 3
Green with 3
Young with 3
Falker with 3

Miles with 3

Fouls might be an issue after all.....we'll have to I thought - lots more fouls in this half.

AT hitting that jumper is big for the Jays. If he can stretch the D - good thing.

39-29 15:58

The Jays better not think this game is over. The Dogs are missing shots but they have a run coming VERY soon.

Randal Falker is missing everything. He looks completely lost out there. I don't know what's up with him but AT is eating him for lunch. Nate is getting caught with double teams - somebody has got to hit an outside shot soon. SIU is packing it in.

Jays continue to do a WONDERFUL job on the boards.

Again - nice 4 min sprint - as Dana coaches - every 4 minutes at a time. Let's see where they are in another 4 minutes....something tells me it won't be up by 10.

PS - No word on those 1000 students that were trying to get into the building. But the Jays have a lot of fans here.

38-29 WOW

What a start to the 2nd!!

Falker shoots an airball from the line.....

Porter the bucket on a great pass from Nate. Then the Steal and 2.

Nate with a diving steal and Watts gets the contiunation call Hoop and the Harm! This place blew up when Watts hit that shot!!!! SIU fans getting chanted at "WHY SO QUIET?" by the Jays fans :). LOOOONG way to go.....

Great start for the Jays....Falker looks bored. SIU looks tired right now. I don't really know if they want this or not. Look out for the 3's though.....

Halftime - Jays lead 32-28

Where is Randal Falker?? He's been really left out of this game by Head Coach Chris Lowery. He played 9 minutes!! AT has only 1 foul - great sign for 2nd half.

HEY - It's the Jerry Pollard Show!! 4 straight calls to end the half. AT didn't like the charge. I thought they were trying to even up the calls. with the reach in on Miles..6-6 at halftime by the way.. Tatum din't like the travel. Not good when a ref stands out that much at the end of the half. He really started to get aggressive with his whistle.

Jays are getting shots: 13-26 50% but they are giving up too many baskets too - 45% shooting for SIU.

Nate has 12 points to lead the Jays but they need Porter and AT get going on offense. I like what Dana is doing with the bench - trying to stay fresh. I wonder if Lowery is holding onto Falker for the stretch run of the 2nd half. Or maybe he's just not into it again. Who knows - but that was odd.

Jays are doing a great job on the boards again. Outrebounding SIU 15-10 but they have more turnovers 6 to 3.

Only 8 foul shots in the whole half. Neither team should have issues with fouls in the 2nd. Southern is in the game thanks to 3's - 5 of 6! Matt Shaw again is hurting them with 2 for 2 from behind the line.

2nd - must match them on D. They must get Porter going and they need to get Nate more shots. AT is going to be hit all game. This is going to be a tough half but you gotta take it if you are the Jays...up by 4 with a half to go for the tourney title - and no foul trouble.

Tidbits - CU has not trailed in the 2nd half of their last 3 games. Jays are 16-4 when up at half. 22 of 32 points have been scored in the paint.

SIU was 8 for 11 in the last meeting in Carbondale....5-6 today...not a good sign.

26-24 3:58

Tight game like we thought. But the refs are starting to tighten the game up with calls. Both teams got away with a lot. I wonder how the 2nd half is going to go. They have let them play but I don't know how long they will let them do that.

Good to see AT score again. He needs to get to the line a bit in the 2nd half. Both teams are playing great defense.

Nate has hit some RIDICULOUS handed, off balance floaters....needs more that.

Pace has gotten back to SIU's. Fans continue to war with chants back and forth.

Jays' Dances have broken out new outfits for this game.....

22-23 6:34

3 by Clemons - first lead by SIU

AT has missed 2 straight shots trying to get to the are going to have to draw blood to get a foul called today.

22-18 7:36 to play in the 1st

The refs are really letting these guys play as they should in a Championship game. I really like it.

AT hasn't scored since getting hit in the face and having his nose stuff with gauze. Good News - AT NO fouls - the whole team NO fouls! Amazing at this point in the game....Southern hasn't taken a foul shot yet!!

Nate is out of the game right now but expect him back in. Miles nearly turned the ball over at the point so I don't think he'll play much more there. Southern is turning the ball over a lot and the Jays defense is the reason. Great job so far....

Scoring pace has slowed down as both teams are missing shots.....

17-10 11:46 to go in 1st

"We Want the Funk" being played by CU band..

Jays continue to rebound the ball well. At bleeding after getting hit in the face for the 2nd time by SIU. Manny forced to come in because of it. Not good for the Jays right now as the tempo is the Jays' right now. You just have the feel here that this isn't the same SIU team as earlier in the year. The Jays are peaking at the right time? Their defensive intensity is amazing right now. SIU hasn't scored since the 15:26 mark....4 mins!

Funk is starting to heat up. Nate, Nick, and AT are again leading the way but the subs are doing a great job with the press. SIU isn't handling the press very well in terms of setting up their offense.

Falker is getting frustrated and the shots are falling. The Jays are out Southerning - Southern!

11-10 Jays 15:12 to play in 1st

The losts contact search was hysterical after AT's first basket...Tatum found the contact lens

Watts with 5 points early is huge for the Jays. Hibma scored off the bench on a great pass by AT. Nate playing great defense but Shaw has hit a 3 already.....

The crowd for the Jays is really starting to make some noise. This is the start that both teams wanted - or rather the MVC wanted for the CBS audience. Southern wants this game low scoring - the Jays want it over 60 points. The pace right now is for that. Nate is having a tough time handling the pressure from Mullins but he just picked up his first.

Both teams are hot to start but the refs are letting the boys play like you want.


For some reason - Witchta fans are cheering for Southern. SIU fans are booing like crazy....

Roar for the SIU is impressive for their starters......Nate has that look again...

This is what college basketball is all about......5 starters huddle up at center court. Jays in blue for the first time in this tourney....smiles all around..they look relaxed.

Game Blog

I will try to do as many updates during the game that I can for you guys not here.

First thoughts - WOW lots of SIU fans are here. It's 60% SIU 30% Jays 10% other. Lots of empty seats. MVC tourney has to work on seating issues for next year.

Both fan bases are going after each other already. Chants, stealing each other's songs that the bands play etc....great atmosphere.

Dana is 5-0 in this game but an 0 in the win column vs. Chris Lowery. Which trend will continue?

Pregame For SIU from Press Row

We've had a little issue with our friends across the street who's talent is doing the game today nationally. Big Sports 590 is your EXCLUSIVE home for everything Bluejay related in Omaha. NO OTHER station will be carrying the game today.

The Game is Sold Out. First time ever.

Some 1,000 CU students are lined up outside the building with vouchers that won't be good for a ticket. They've been there since 7:30 am. The MVC is trying very hard to find a way to get them into empty seats. They want a packed house for the CBS audience.

keep checking back for more....

Day 3 Recap On Championship Sunday

I felt bad for Barry Hinson, Coach of Missouri St, after his team got blasted by the Jays on Saturday. Hinson’s polite tone of voice in the postgame didn’t hide the fact that he was baically saying that his team was actually in the game vs. Creighton. Saying “It was a 8 point game with 2 play” and that the Committee shouldn’t look at the 17 point margin of victory is just wrong. The Jays never allowed MSU into the game in the 2nd half and NEVER trailed the entire game. MSU got outworked and out coached on Saturday afternoon. Watch for this – 2 Valley teams go into the dance in exchange for higher seeds. If the Jays win today – could they go as high as a 6 seed? We’ll see….

Now, I think the Bears should make the tourney given the fact that they have some amazing wins and they have an RPI that is comparable to last year. The big difference this year is that they have the ONE win vs. Wisconsin. We’ll have to wait and see if that is enough to get them in.

The Seniors scored 65 of the Jays 75 points on Saturday. Amazing work by Nate Funk, who scored a tourney record 33 and only missed 5 shots all day long. Nick Porter was, as Nate called him, the X-factor with 19 points and 13 rebs – his first double double of his Bluejay career. AT wasn’t needed on offense that much but was his typical dominate self on D. I’ve really like his work on the defensive end of the floor in this tourney. Can they repeat the effort today, less than 24 hours after the win over the Bears?

Now onto SIU. The Salukis looked a bit bored with the Bradley game yesterday. We’ll have to wait and see if they play harder today since it’s CBS and the Bluejays. I’ve said it before – I just think the breaks are going to go CU’s way today. They might lose but it won’t be because they got a bad break. More on this game later from the arena….

Some Notes from St. Louis:

- I ate lunch with Gary Parrish of yesterday and talked to him a lot about the Valley. He told about his article that he was planning to write on The Valley and the fact that he didn’t like the current talk going on about the league. I don’t totally disagree with him about quality of the Valley – except top to bottom – the MVC is better than the Big 12. I don’t know how much of the Big 12 Gary has seen, but Colorado, Nebraska, and Baylor are god awful. Drake and Evansville won a game in this Tourney – Let’s see if those 3 Big 12 teams can do that.

- I’m still hearing rumblings that Doc Sadler isn’t thrilled with what is going on with Nebraska and that Arkansas could come calling. If that happens, many that I spoke with expect him to jump quickly.

- Evansville fired Steve Murfeld. Indy St. fired Royce Waltman. Everyone is wondering when the firing of Porter Moser is going to be announced. Everyone in the media that I spoke with has heard the same rumor – he’s out. But why no word yet from the school?

- I met Jerry Palm of on Friday night for the first time. Really nice guy and I talked with him at great length about the Jays and Missouri St. The win yesterday was huge for a couple of reasons. First, the Jays jump Missouri St. on his board and put them into the tourney. 2nd, Missouri St. now has to answer the question of “why do you belong” after losing to the Jays 3 times and finishing a full game below them in the standings. Jerry says the league is a 2 bid league that could get 1 more if everything falls right in the other tourneys. Just be glad you won yesterday J.

Saturday, March 3, 2007

Day 3 Update

Sorry this is late but I've got to interview Asst. Coach Brian Fish at his hotel for the pregame show tomorrow.

I've been trying to find out info on tickets and the best thing I can tell you is that it's not going to sell out. Don't quote me on that but from what I've been told - tickets are pretty easy to get if you want them. I'd check some other sources - maybe before I drove or flew down here for the game.

Should be an awesome one! I'll write a lot more about tonight's performance (NATE WAS THE MAN!) tomorrow and keep you updated during the Championship game....

Nick Porter "I want SIU" - well, he got 'em. Now what are you going to do with 'em?

Game 2 - Halftime thoughts

Jays up 39-34 at Half

Torid pace from St. Louis. Both these teams can ready to play. So far, Missouri St. has to like their chances going into the 2nd half. The Jays have played really well on Offense - so they have to like the way the 1st went as well.

Here are the big stats - A-Train with 2 fouls. Nate with 17. And only 6 points from a non-senior! They need to get Miles going and the need to keep track of Blake Ahearn who will shoot from anywhere on the court. The Jays need to make him put the ball on the floor. First 28 points of the game were scored by Jays Seniors.

There are a LOT of Jays fans here but they are stuck in one corner of the gym. They can be very loud but MSU will be going away from them in 2nd half.

MSU shot 55% in the first half to the Jays 41%. I'm really impressed with Nate Funk and the game he brought today. The 3 headed monster of A-Train, Porter, and Funk scored 33 of 39 points in the first half. Jays outrebounded MSU 16-10. Yet, Blake Ahearn scored 15 of MSU's 34. Jays were 5-13 from 3 (some misses were UGLY) to 3-5 for Missouri St. Expect more 3's from them in the 2nd.

But here we go - Bench scoring -16-0!!! for MSU! The Jays need SOMEBODY to score when the come in!! This is where last night's game is huge though. CU should have better legs for the 2nd half....we'll see what happens.

Day 3 - Game 2 Pregame thoughts

Greetings again from the Scott Trade Center. Jays vs. Missouri St.

First, great game with SIU and Bradley. I made a fool out of myself in the press room watching the game on TV, as I openly cheered (loudly) as Matt Shaw dropped in the game winner. Yes, that is a MAJOR no-no and I have often ripped members of the media (Brian Rosenthal) for cheering at games. My fault. Tom Shatel of the OWH was right next to me and scolded me for doing it - rightfully so. He said "I know you aren't a media member in your mind but try to keep it down". I'm pretty red faced about it but I want to go to the NCAA tournament. It's my favorite thing to cover and I simply forgot where I was. Gotta check myself I little bit here in St. Louis. I have to at least act professionally. Tom asked me if I was a Bluejay fan, cheering for CU...great.....I have to even explain things to my fellow media members.

Ok, with that out of the way. Some news to report: After the firing of Royce Waltman yesterday, the Valley schools have started to act like big time schools. Porter Moser is rumored to have been fired at Illinios St after 4 seasons and Steve Murfeld has been let go supposively by Evansville. The Purple Aces don't have much coming back but the Redbirds could be very good with the right coach.

The crowd here in St. Louis is huge! 22,000+, the largest crowd ever for basketball in the Scott Trade Center. This is also the largest crowd ever to see the Jays play (22,612) Lots and lots of SIU fans that will be staying til tomorrow. Reports are that there were up to 3,000 Bluejays fans who came down without tickets and have been shut out of the game. Not good considering that Missouri St has a ton of people here. We'll have to see if there is a game to go to tomorrow.

Like I said in the pregame - MSU by 10. I hope I'm wrong. Like I said before, I want to go to the tourney and a loss today makes many people sweat at CU til next Sunday.

PS - Nebraska lost today at Colorado like I thought they would. CU plays pretty good at home. I've heard Ryan Anderson got tossed, which means he's out for Oklahoma State game too. Not good and crashing way to end a pretty good freshman season. I talked with a national writer today who said that he expected Billy Gillispie to be offered the Arkansas job and turn it down. Arkansas would then offer it to Doc Sadler. We'll see if they fire Stan Heath first but watch for that story to really heat up in about 2 weeks.

I'll post again at halftime....Good Luck Jays.

Friday, March 2, 2007

Day 2 Recap - Lots of Fun

Day 2 here in St. Louis was much more fun than Day 1. No driving, no snow, no stress - just lots and lots of basketball. Oh, and I did a little radio in between.

Game 1 - No. 9 Drake vs. No. 1 SIU
Would Drake have anything left in the tank? Nope. No atmosphere at all. Arena was 85% Southern. Drake never had a shot.

Final Score: SIU cruises 71-59

Game 2 - No. 5 UNI vs. No. 4 Bradley
TOTALLY different story for game 2. Lots of energy in the building. UNI looked DEAD in the first half going down as much as 14 to Bradley. I made the statement on the air that the team might have quit on first year Head Coach Ben Jacobsen. However, that was not the case.

The Panthers clawed and scratched their way back into the game eventually tying the game up at 48. Bradley's ball and Will Franklin brought it up the court.

With the clock running down under 3 seconds, Franklin nearly turned the ball over but was able to grab it - cock it - and drill a desperation 3. And then act like he meant to do it the entire time, complete with the heart thump and crowd stare down.

Final score Bradley moves on to face SIU - 51-48.

Game 3 - No. 2 Creighton vs. No. 10 Indiana St.

Final Score - 59-38 Jays

I have said a lot already on this game but nice win for the Jays. Indiana St. simply ran out of gas. Some notes though:

- Dana Altman won his 17 tourney game at CU. Tied for No. 1
- 38 points sets a new tourney record for defense for CU. Old record was their's at 40 in '84
- Jays are now 14-2 as the No. 2 seed in the MVC Tourney
- In the first half - 28 of 32 points were scored by the guards
- Jays ended the first half on a 15-2 run
- ISU only scored 4 Fg's in the entire 2nd half and 18 points the whole half. (2 of which were last second 3's by ISU)

Game 4 - No. 6 Wichita St. vs. No. 3 Missouri St

Halftime as I write this: 34-32 Wichita.

This game is just like Game 2. The arena is FULL of Shocker and Bear fans. Loud cheers after every basket. Lots and lots of 3's being hit on both sides. The Jays wanted a game like this. Regardless who the Jays play - they will NOT have the same crowd advantage that they had today. Both MSU and WSU have brought A LOT of people.

(Again! Another cheerleader just got hurt. This time it's Wichita St that one goes down. Last year it was Southern.)

Shockers were 8 for 15 from 3 in the first half. 2-9 for the Bears. If that keeps up - it will be WSU vs. CU tomorrow. The Jays actually want that. A loss to WSU wouldn't hurt them because they will have gone farther than MSU. Put that with the sweep of the Bears, and the Jays are the 2nd team from the Valley in the tourney.

edit - 16,651 people at the Scott Trade Center...New Quarter Final Record! Semifinals should draw even more. Amazing, Amazing I write this it's 64-60 MSU. Long way to go with 2:25 to play.....

Now a loss to MSU - that spells trouble for the Jays and the Committee.

See you tomorrow! Day 3 - Semifinal Saturday!

Day 2 - Game 1 - Halftime thoughts

32-20 Jays at Halftime

The Jays really came out lame in the first couple of minutes - just like Coach Fish was afraid of as he said on the air with us today. They were down by as much as 6 points and were 0-6 for 3 at one point. Indy ST. had a fire as Coach Waltman is going to out after this tourney unless they win it.

However, over the final 6:48 of the half, CU outscored Indy St. 15-2 to take a 32-20 lead into the break. The Sycamores started to look REEEAAALLY tired down the final few moments of the half. You have to wonder if their game last night, and the come back vs. The Redbirds has taken too much out of them?

Indy St is going to be in major foul trouble if this keeps up. Fouls for ISU: 12! Jays: 5

Some Ugly stats: Jays were 4-13 from 3. But Indy St. was 4-12. Jays 8-12 FTs. Indy 4-5

Good Stats: Nate 4-7 for 12 points. 28 of 32 points scored by guards. Miles tied a career high with 5 rebs. And AT - NO FOULS!

Day 1 - Madness To Get To The Arch

I think the best place to start this story would be on Wednesday afternoon back in Omaha. Since I work for a company that has meteorologists on staff, you would think that I would get some inside info on the weather. So during my show, I asked our News Director Bill Jensen, to ask our boys at Action 3 News if they could let me know about the storm. I wanted to know if I needed to leave on Wednesday to get out of Omaha in time for the Tourney. The answer - Nope, 3 to 6 inches maybe a bit more but the morning should be clear to fly......Riiiiight. Nice work boys - I appreciate it.

Thursday March 1 - The Start of the Madness

5:30 am - Got up...three S's...if you don't know them - not going to start to explain now....too much tell to the car and to the airport.

6:25 am - Got to the airport, parked and made me way to security for my 7:20 Southwest direct flight to St. Louis. It was snowing pretty good on the way. My car (Mazda RX-8) is NOT meant for snow storms. It does ok with snow on the ground, but not driving in it. I got behind a couple of snow plows which led me right to Eppley. I got lucky in that the respect that I didn't have to drive through snow drifts. Would be a foreshadow for the rest of the day.

7:20 am - A Las Vegas flight on Southwest that was suppose to leave at 6:45 am gets stuck trying to pull out of the gate. They had to push the thing back to the gate to get the people off the plane. Not a good sign for my flight. A guy comes on the P.A. and says that they aren't going to board us until they know we are going to take off. In the meantime, a United flight boards, takes off and another one lands and deplanes.....hmmm - I guess I should fly United more in snow storms - except to Chicago. I hate O'Hare.

8:20 - We are 1 hour behind and no sign of leaving any time soon. There are now tornados touching down in St. Louis....Great....a Blizzard to tornados.....good weather day! My phone is blowing up from my girlfriend who is telling me not to fly. She's nervous..I'm not. I don't think we are going anywhere.

9:30 - 2 hours late now...Travis calls me to talk about what is going on on his show. He's in St. Louis. His boss - my former boss - let him leave on Wednesday. His boss was smart. I, on the other hand, was told that I would be "fine". Right, if "fine" means snowed in and stuck in Omaha! I start to notice the number of Bluejay fans that are around and on my flight. Not good for St. Louis crowd.

10 am - Las Vegas flight that got pushed back gets cancelled. Not a good sign. Line at the counter is 30 people deep.

10:10 - Noon St. Louis flight gets cancelled. About this time, a group of 3 older Jays fans are talking to a guy that I noticed as I sat down to wait for my flight. I'm not going to tell you how I noticed him because he asked me to keep our road trip quiet. So I am going to respect his wishes. But we start to talk a bit. He needs to get to St. Louis too. He tells me he has rented a car but I-29 is closed. I ask him what kinda car. He says an SUV with 4 wheel drive.....Hmmmm Could we make it?

10:15- It's official. I'm F'd!! Flight Cancelled. Line goes from 30 deep to 60 deep in about 3 minutes. What the hell am I going to do? I've got a show to do and pre/post game to do for the Jays on Friday. I'm not going to be happy about being in Omaha...especially cause Trav said it was 50 and sunny in St. Louis.

10:30 - I walk out of security talking to Southwest. They basically tell me what I already know - I'm F'd! Then (We will call him Mr. My New Best Friend) walks by. "Wanna try to drive?"

10:40 - AVIS confirms his reservation for an SUV and we call every police outlet we can to find out about I-29. Closed. Don't go on it. No tow trucks - Search and Rescue only. Search and Rescue!! What? People are dying out there? Uh Oh. But seriously - it's a snow storm....if you have water - you should live. I think "just bring water and we could make it :)"

11:oo - Mr. New Best Friend and I go back to my apartment downtown to wait and see about I-29 and continue to call everyone we possibly can to find out if it is worth the risk of driving to St. Louis. No way I'm doing my show today so Brian, the producer puts together a best of show. But I've got to decide what to do.

12 noon - After a phone call to Bill Jensen and the question of - "Should we go?" He says, you get to Nebraska City - and you are fine. We say - Let's go!

12:15 pm- After a stop at a store for supplies (water, red bull etc) where a old woman who just got fired for not going to work and was telling the world about it, told me - no lie - "You are idiot for trying to drive to St. Louis. I hope you make it but I think you are being VERY stupid" - we go. Snow has stopped but the wind is blowing snow everywhere.

12:20 - No Cops on the on ramp! But no other cars really either!

12:25 - Holy Sh$t the road is packed with snow...but its a good pack...its like an extra inch of pavement! The 4 wheel drive is kicking in..40 mph...My New Best Friend is holding it down like a Champion Sled Dog driver and we are moving....really moving. We both sit silent. We are both a bit freaked out. Strangers to each other, in a car, in a blizzard, on a closed highway. I try to crack a few jokes about if we make it will be all worth it but it doesn't break the tension.

1 pm - Still snowing...wind blowing every which way. Getting white'd out at some points but nobody is around. No cops, no cars, no tow trucks. MNBF phone is starting to ring.

1:15 pm - We see a flipped over truck with nobody around it. Not a good thing to see when you know you are being stupid. 3 more calls to MNBF.

1:30 - Nebraska City....getting more snow...but lots of wind. Still going 40.

1:45 - Past Nebraska City....wet pavement!!!! My New Best Friend floors it....90 mph. He needs to get to the St. Louis as bad as I do. Phone calls still rolling in....meanwhile I'm texting my girlfriend trying to keep her calm.

3 pm - Kansas City!! and what is this? - The SUN!!! MNBF and I are having some really interesting conversations. I'm learning a lot from this guy. I think I was meant to be in this car today. MNBF has easily spent 2 of the 3 hours on the phone.

7 pm - After a 6 and half hour drive, awesome conversation, about a 134 times of saying I can't believe we (add your fav line about getting through the snow).....AMAZING time to get to St. Louis...we arrive!

7:30 - I'm checked into my hotel and I go right to the first game of Arch Madness Drake vs. Evansville. I find Travis Justice and Peteymac in the arena and tell my crazy story. They both are amazed at the time (so am I. I am prouder of getting to St. Louis in 6 and half hours out of Omaha than I was about the White Out for Wichita). I see that Drake has shaved their heads for team unity. Klayton Korver's hair is gone!! His hair is the Korver thing! The shaggy dog look is what makes a Korver! But it didn't hurt his shooting obviously. I wonder if Drake could beat SIU...hmmm.

8:00 - Evansville's Matt Webster has 2 Ft's to win the game for the Aces. The dude has taken more Ft's than anyone in the Valley - of course he's misses both! Korver buries a huge 3! Double OT! What a first game for the tourney.....Drake wins it 101-96. Evansville really F'd up that one. With 5 the hell is Steve Murfeld going to keep his job? That team could have been good with a good coach.

8:45 - Game 2 starts. Indiana St. vs. Illinois St. This one matters cause the Jays play the winner and a loss could end the coaching career Royce Waltman at Indy St. Another crazy game but watch out for the Redbirds next year. They are SO athletic and so quick. Eldridge is the best player I've seen in the Valley for overall skill. I'd take him over Nate right now. So smooth...still raw in his decision making but makes up for it in many ways.

9:30 - Ill. St. up by 12....Jays vs. them again...Uh oh. Indiana St. doesn't scare me. The Redbirds do. They could easily knock out the Jays if they shoot well.

10 pm - the Collapse begins. I don't really know what happened to the Birds. They just stopped playing. Indiana St. just hung around and hung around...and then BAM! 3 by Stinson....and they stole the game right from them. Sycamores win it 68-65. Wow.

11 pm - Sleep. A bed has never felt so good but I have to admit...How lucky was I? I got a ride through a blizzard. Made it St. Louis in 6 and half there to see a double OT game and then saw a major upset in the first round. The only bad thing - the closed down the media buffet before I got there...had to eat some chicken wings from the media suite before I passed out. I think I'll live.....Can't wait for Day 2.

Check back tonight or tomorrow for it. There is no wireless at the Scott Trade Center for some stupid reason so I have to write here at the hotel. Off to UNI vs. Bradley.....

Jays play at 6:05 vs. Indiana St.