Covering University of Colorado sports, mostly basketball, since 2010

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Tuesday Grab Bag: Team Colorado steams into Sweet Sixteen

So, how's everyone's summer going?  It's been pretty quiet on the sporting front, with little to nothing happening as we hit July.  In fact...

... wait, we have breaking news from the Drew League:
Good Lord, that should come with a NSFW tag.  That's former CU guard and manager Shannon Sharpe throwing down on... some guy in the Drew League, and... you know, I really think that poor man may be dead...

So, RIP, random dude who got dunked on.


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Today in the bag, I only have two items of note for y'all, as I won't waste my breath on the All Star Game.  I'm talking success at TBT and the Euro Finale.

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Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Tuesday Grab Bag: Buffs fill out roster in style

Over the holiday weekend, Boulder was visited by an eclectic mix of aged hippies and hangers on... which didn't really differentiate it much from any other weekend, come to think of it.  I kid, but the Grateful Dead, or what remains of the old school peace and love touring group, played two shows at Folsom; the first such musical performances at the stadium since 2001 (Dave Matthews Band).  From all accounts, the concerts went off without a hitch, and, more importantly, there was little trouble in the City of Boulder pre- or post-shows.  From my own experience, I found the attendees to be rather reserved and far from destructive on the larger neighborhood (I live four blocks from Folsom, and walked the creek path before each show).
Seemed like a pretty cool scene up on campus.  From: @CUBuffsTurf
Now, I don't give a shit about the Dead.  Not my style of music, not my kind of crowd (outside of Bill Walton, who is, of course, always welcome at the Casa de Rumblin).  But, this was an important moment for CU.  The ability to hold concerts at other non-football events at Folsom is a nice revenue stream to the athletic department, and putting on these shows with the Dead and Company were the first steps towards tapping that stream since before the east-side suites went up.  I don't believe for a second that CU made too much money this weekend, at least nothing that'll come close to erasing the remaining costs of the facility upgrades, but every dollar added, without too much impact on the community, is important, and nothing to sniff at.

Additionally, the last time Folsom hosted a concert, the football team went on to win a conference title, and drop the most satisfying scoreline in the history of the program.  Maybe, in that vein, the return of some touring musical karma will help the 2016 Buffaloes end the painful bowl drought...

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Today in the Bag, I'm talking a huge pickup for Coach Boyle and the men's basketball team, tipoff in The Basketball Tournament, and a Euros update.

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Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Tuesday Grab Bag: The State of the CU Athletic Department

The news broke last night: the great Pat Summitt had passed.  A titan of the college basketball world, Summitt owned the women's game for nearly four full decades, heading the Lady Vols of Tennessee through 8 national titles, 16 conference crowns, and well over 1,000 wins (at an 84% clip).  Really, the only head coach who can hold a candle to her success is UCLA's John Wooden, but Summitt coached longer, endured against more persistent competition, and ultimately won more (though Wooden did leave a bunch of years on the table). In that vein, there is a very credible argument to be made that Summitt, not Wooden, is the sport's greatest coach.  Oh, and did I mention that she graduated everyone and ran a clean program?

It's with all that in mind that the entire basketball world mourns the loss of a legend; RIP.

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Today in the bag, I'm talking the Rick George roundtable, some recruiting news that has BuffNation all abuzz, and soccer notes from both the Copa and the Euros.

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Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Tuesday Grab Bag: A new Mayor for Chicago

While Rham Emmanuel isn't gone, the City of Chicago did see some Mayoral reform last week. Yep, the one, the only, Spencer Dinwiddie is headed to the Madhouse on Madison, as the former CU star was traded to the Chicago Bulls late last week.

The move by Chicago, ostensibly to build guard depth while avoiding paying guaranteed money to a bench slot, makes sense.  As Blog A Bull pointed out, with Dinwiddie's non-guaranteed portion of his contract lasting through November, the Bulls get a relatively cheap look at the former Colorado guard before having to make a decision on the roster spot at season's onset.  All it cost them was Cameron Bairstow, a reserve forward who was probably going to get cut anyway.

Sure, this essentially innocuous trade isn't going to turn too many heads around the basketball world, but one thing it did do is lead me into a victory lap around my office. For me, to see one of my favorite CU stars of the recent past winding up on my beloved Bulls is a wonderful turn of fate.  I still believe Spencer has the talent to play at the NBA level, and the team that gives him a solid chance should be able to reap some good rewards.  If it's My Bulls, you better believe I'm dropping the cash for a new jersey... and boy will the Bulls.com shop be surprised when they receive in that online order.

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Today in the bag, I'm talking Game 7, Copa America, and the solidifying of the non-conference schedule in men's hoops.

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Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Tuesday Grab Bag: ... and just think, summer hasn't even started yet!

Straight to the action today, as we all wind our way towards the true opening days of summer.

Today in the bag, I'm talking playoffs in three sports: the NBA Finals, the Stanley Cup Final, and Copa America Centenario.

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Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Tuesday Grab Bag: A new hope on the recruiting trail?

Before I get to the bag today, I want to take a minute to remember the true Greatest of All Time, Muhammad Ali.  If you've been living under a rock, and hadn't heard, the three-time heavyweight champion of the world passed away last week, at the age of 74.  I won't spend too much time here, as others much more capable then myself have written on the subject, but there isn't a single athlete of past generations that I resent having missed more than Ali.  Beyond simply being a boxer, he commanded the ring and the narrative more than should've been capable, owning the public spectacle at a time that you still got your news from papers.  To have been alive, watching as he held the sporting world in the palm of his hand, must have been awe-inspiring and transformational.

Even today, watching film of his fights is fascinating.  No one takes punches like he could, no one that size has ever been as fast, no one more ferocious when he had a man stunned; this isn't just smoke, he was, legitimately, the GOAT.  As a boxing fan, I pain seeing what others got to absorb in real time.  As a historian, I marvel at the impact he had outside of the ring.  We will never see another athlete like him, a defining American caricature now lost to the ages.  RIP.

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Today in the bag, I'm talking one last gasp on the 2016 recruiting trail for Coach Boyle and crew, the NBA Finals (such as they are), some #SoxThoughts (as promised).

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Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Tuesday Grab Bag: Back from the Dead (aka, a road trip with the White Sox)

Having returned from vacation, I'd like to point you all in the direction of Bill Walton's autobiography, Back from the Dead.  I spent my extended weekend on a road trip to Kansas City, which provided plenty of time for an audio book.  I chose Walton's recent release for the journey, and it was with his dulcet tones in ear that I sped down the highways of central Kansas towards the City of Fountains.  The book was a fantastic tour through his life, celebrating his love of all things basketball, biking, and music. It also dealt with the trials of pain and injury, the loss of the gifts that made him such a beloved star in the 1970s.  Through it all, I found it an open and honest tale of everything that goes into existence - success, failure, joy, sorrow, excitement, fear, learning, teaching, etc.  I can't recommend it enough, especially if you, like me, wonder at Walton's World from afar, and just want a small peek into his circus.

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Today in the bag, I'm talking the Baylor thing, the NBA Finals, and the MLB standings.

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