Climb out from your crawl space, open the blinds and let the freezing January sun shine in.
It’s safe to watch regular season college basketball again.
It has emerged from the primordial, gurgling goo it had become under overbearing, lock-and-key suppression and primitive battle tactics lifted from an old book written by Gen. Stonewall Defense.
Scoring continues to soar and, not so shockingly, so does my interest level.
Frankly, these days, I’ve got a little more Springfield in my step.
UCLA’s basketball team, once coached by Ben Howland, is averaging more than 90 points per game. These Bruins are more fun in defeat than some of Howland’s teams were in victory. And UCLA isn’t even the highest-flying team in town, losing Wednesday night to USC, which scored 84 points in victory. The entire Pac 12, Arizona included, is a trampoline act.
Tuesday night, nationally, schools ranked No.1, No.2 and No.4 all lost. Then, on Wednesday, No. 6 Florida State was blown out on the road by Georgia Tech and No. 8 UCLA fell to its cross-town rivals. Wasn’t that something? One Saturday in December the national scoring average for all D-1 games was 75.43, the highest since 2000 (information provided by the amazing KenPom).
And get his: Northwestern might even make its first NCAA tournament.
This has been some reverse dribble.
Two years ago, this March, I filed an exhaustive (to me) enterprise report for the Los Angeles Times concerning the dire state of Dr. Naismith’s game. The story was so 18-wheeler wide the editors split it in two and ran half on A-1 and the other half in sports.
The sport had crawled to a staggering stop, like the last punches thrown by two drunks in a bar fight. The rest of this article is available to subscribers only – to become a subscriber click here.