OK gang the regular school year is complete and many players are in summer school taking courses to stay on track for graduating on time. I was scheduled to attend the Rumble in The Bronx, or shall I say The Rumble in The Metro NY Area. Unfortunately I did not attend because I was just too confused about travelling from Pennsylvania to the Bronx to NJ, back to Riverdale, etc. Way to confusing for me at my age. I loved it when basketball was simple and games were played one at a time. How about that Pa. tournament in Conshohoken (sp)? Anyone remember the old HS tournament at Montifiore Hospital gym in the Bronx? How about the old Kennedy Center and Wagner Center Easter Tournaments? Those were the days! One game at a time with quality players participating. Now there are 80 teams in a weekend event in various age group categories. Glad kids have a chance to play but many of these games are often blow-outs.
For people who attended the Rumble, I applaud you. You are true fans who must have either a gas saving vehicle or lots of money for gas. The set-up seemed so crazy. Even past tournaments have done similar but at least kept games in the same state within a few miles. The Playez have held games in two or three counties in the past. But they stayed in NJ.
I also think a schedule with rosters would be a nice thing if possible. People would gladly purchase it to be able to better understand who is playing where. It is hard remembering who E7 and G4 are when all you see is numbers and times that often are wrong.
But despite my complaints, these tournaments are really for the kids participating so the fan concerns are secondary.
Whats Going On at SHU?
I honestly feel SHU will be improved next season. The talent is good and the players will be a year older. Add the new guys and we could see a team who will be in a post season tournament. With a real quality player who many have forgotten sitting out, a few freshmen players who can all play, and a lights out JC player on board with Brooklyn toughness, folks better watch out because this team could surprise alot of people. And if Glover gets to play............WATCH OUT because despite his height, he will man handle guys.
What's going On at RU?
Just like SHU, RU will be better next season. The three FIG guys are working very hard. I know for a fact JR will be playing in NYC this summer in the Nike Pro Am against NBA and European professional players. He will be playing with Hazell from SHU on a good Dykeman Pro Am Team. And no this is not the Rucker uptown. This is a league that has Stephon Marbury, and a host of other NBA guys playing. The new guys at Rutgers will make a difference. All have game even if some will not be quite as good as advertised the first 2 years. Rosario provides that shooter option that will make others so much better. Two new inside guys to bang is much needed and necessary relief. Lastly, FHJ will be a much better coach this season to compliment his talent.
What's going on at SJU?
Norm, one of the true gentlemen in the game, has one last chance to get it done at St. Johns. They have decent talent on board and if they come together as a team they could be pretty good. The one factor everyone is forgetting is they could get the old Rob Thomas back. If he comes back the way I think he will, SJU will be a much improved team. Burrell and all the returning kids who will be improved, plus the new guys who might just be better than the limited press clippings they have, and Rob Thomas. Not bad to me and a team that could definitely compete especially if Anthony Mason is what folks expect him to be.
Next week I will be at the Hoop Group event at Rutgers. I look forward to watching games being played in the same area.