Covering University of Colorado sports, mostly basketball, since 2010

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Tuesday Grab Bag: Game Week

While everyone was distracted by the looming spectacle of college football's opening day, Tad Boyle was hard at work, adding talent to the CU Men's Basketball program.  Seemingly out of nowhere, the Daily Camera reported on Saturday that the Buffs have added 6-7 Dutch swingman Alexander Strating to the roster as a preferred walk-on for the 2016-17 season, with an eye towards putting him on scholarship for 2017-18.  A brief internet search for young Alexander, who I will be calling 'the Flying Dutchman,' returned few results, but did unearth this brief highlight film:

I'm always cautious, in regards to game film, but I do see a wiry player comfortable with a jump shot.  What comes after that - the ability to defend, the ability to score in traffic, the ability to play a number of positions - will be far more telling, yet not discernible from the tape at hand. The offer list (UC Riverside, DU, and Loyola) is not very impressive, but those kinds of things aren't always telling when they pertain to an international recruit. For now, a default to 'In Tad we Trust' will have to suffice, and it is telling that Coach Boyle spent one of his precious 2017 scholarships on this veritable unknown; he has to have a good feeling here.

While Alexander's on the roster this fall, there's no doubt in my mind that he will be redshirting.  He'll need time to adjust to the American game, as well as put on a few pounds.  So, until the fall of 2017, we'll just have to wait in anticipation.

Welcome to the program, Alexander!


Today in the bag, I'm talking my annual football goals, the first results from the world of football, and the fortunes of the soccer and volleyball teams.

Click below for the bag...

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Tuesday Grab Bag: So, will the Buffs go bowling?

With game week finally on the horizon, it's straight to the action this afternoon.

Today in the bag, I'm musing on Colorado's hopes for a celebration-inducing bowl bid, gold in men's basketball at the Olympics, and a pair of big wins to start the season for the women's soccer team.

Click below for the bag...

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Tuesday Grab Bag: I've been watching weightlifting... yep, weightlifting.

This is not a drill, people of Boulder.  The students are back in town as of tomorrow, as student move-in begins in earnest.  Prepare for traffic, loud parties, and extended wait times for delivery pizza.  Of course, while the start of the fall academic calendar comes with its share of downsides, it also comes some decided positives... like the accompanying start of the fall sports calendar.  In fact, it will all get started this weekend, with women's soccer's kickoff in the Springs against Air Force (Friday @ 6pm).  Before you know it, we'll all be treated to the start of football season, the even more exciting start of basketball season, and the throes of a winter of competition across all fronts.  With the Buffs back in town, its finally time to bid summer an adieu, and welcome in the 2016-17 season.  Let's get it on!


Quickly, a big shout-out to ForeverBuff Emma Coburn for her bronze medal performance in the 3000m steeple chase.  Her American-record run did all of BuffNation proud.  Way to go, Emma!


Only two topics this afternoon as we inch closer to fall.  Today in the bag, I'm talking Saturday's football scrimmage and the pratfalls of closed door practices, before closing with the Olympics.

Click below for the bag...

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Tuesday Grab Bag: Team Colorado Comes Up Short in TBT Finale

Just when I though the post-TBT landscape would be a doom of non-basketball sporting entertainment, here comes the Olympics, ready and willing to slake my thirst.  I've been watching the Team USA blowouts, both men's and women's, from tip to final horn, not caring the slightest that barely any of the action has been the least bit competitive.  If you, too, find yourself jonesing for some hoops, please, bypass the tired old gymnastics and swimming garbage and give the tournament a try. 


Today in the bag, I'm talking The Basketball Tournament final, a fresh new look for the CEC, and the start of fall camp for the football team.

Click below for the bag...

Monday, August 1, 2016

2016 TBT Final Preview: Team Colorado Plays for $2 Million against Overseas Elite

Note: there will be no Grab Bag this week.  In lieu, here's this preview!

Well, what the hell is this?  *checks calendar*  It's August, by God, and I'm writing a basketball preview. Has the world gone mad? OK, no, the world has not gone mad (at least not the sporting world...). I'm pounding this beast out in the heat of summer because a group of Colorado Basketball Alumni have caught fire, and rolled to the final game of The Basketball Tournament.

For those caught unawares, TBT is a single-elimination, five-on-five, professional basketball tourney played for a grand, winner-take-all prize of $2 million cash.  In it's third year of operation, the tournament has been steadily growing in prominence, and features a plethora of current and former pros from top-flight leagues from across the world (though, you won't find any current NBAers here). Many of the teams that featured in the bracket this summer were founded as alumni groups, made up almost entirely of former teammates from big-name college programs.  Team Colorado, in their second year of existence, was founded in this mold, looking to bring BasketBuffs of seasons past together in the name of program pride. The venture is the brainchild of walk-on hero Beau Gamble, who, in collaboration with general manager Trent Beckley, forged the current roster from pieces of the Patton, Bzdelik, and Boyle eras, highlighting some of the best and brightest from the last decade of Boulder hoops.
It's all come down to this.  One game for the money.
Team Colorado, for all their promise, struggled last year, losing their opening round game against eventual tournament runner-up Team 23.  Undaunted, and living by the 'Fight CU' mantra to "never give in," they re-formed this summer, using the knowledge of that painful 2015 loss to fuel a smarter attempt in 2016.  They started with a mini-camp in Boulder, taking advantage of Coach Boyle's open door policy to alumni to train at the Foot of the Flatirons.  They also added a full-time coach, former star and current DU assistant Dwight Thorne II, giving everything an organized flair, something that didn't really exist a year ago.  With focus and preparedness, they hit TBT on a mission, and have done nothing but win since the early days of July.

As a result, the team is now 36 minutes of basketball against the defending champion Overseas Elite away from a $2 million prize and bragging rights.  What's more, since the Tournament operates in a weird, social media focused selection process, 100 of the team's supporters could win with the Buffs, sharing in the prize should they come home with the title.

So, since the opportunities to credibly talk hoops over the summer are few and far between, I'm jumping at this chance.  I'm going to give this championship game the full preview treatment, with in-depth discussion of both teams' rosters and abilities.  I'll also come up with a prediction, saying just how likely it is that TC and friend of the blog @Coloradotrv get to share in a big payday on Tuesday. Let's get to it!


Hype Music for the Evening: "I Get Money" by 50 Cent

Curtis Jackson, who I last saw promoting boxing, of all things, was one of the biggest rap acts in the world when I was going to CU.  Since then, he's slid off my radar, dividing his time and talent amongst a bunch of differing pursuits.  This song, one of his lesser hits, fits with tonight's theme: makin' money, bruh.


Tip off from historic Rose Hill Gym in the Bronx is set for 5pm MT on Tuesday, 8/2.  Televised coverage can be found on ESPN, with no radio option available, as far as I can tell.  For those of you in the NYC area, you can purchase tickets here.

Click below for the preview...