There's real basketball in just over 2 weeks, as Northwestern tips off their one game exhibition season against Robert Morris. So I'm switching into basketball mode. You want football analysis, read MountainTiger's posts, I'm too depressed to talk about it anymore.
- Teddy Greenstein of the Chicago Tribune has some notes from Northwestern basketball practice. The bulk of the column deals with the burning question of who will replace Michael "Juice" Thompson, and brings up the usual suspects in freshmen Tre Demps and David Sobolewski, but also indicates that Carmody is considering giving non-garbage time minutes to walk-on Reggie Hearn. Hopefully the freshmen can learn the offense quickly, because I don't think Hearn has the talent to play meaningful minutes in Big Ten games.
Greenstein also notes that Northwestern is trying to schedule future non-conference games with Stanford and Illinois-Chicago, both of which would be positive developments.
- The preseason coaches poll is out, with North Carolina as the near unanimous number one; they bring almost everyone back from last year and have a great recruiting class coming in. The Big Ten has just three ranked teams: Ohio State is third, Wisconsin is 14th, and Michigan is a surprising (to me at least) 18th. Michigan State and Purdue are just outside the top 25. Northwestern non-conference opponent Baylor comes in at 12th, thanks to a loaded recruiting class and the surprising return to school of Perry Jones III, who would have been a lottery pick. Stupid lockout.
- Friend of the Purple Down With Goldy has been posting his conference previews, which are always an entertaining read. W knows a lot about all these leagues because he's an even bigger degenerate than I am and bets every college basketball game on the board, so check them out, just be careful at work since there's pics of scantily clad college girls. The Big 12 should be very interesting this year; keep an eye on Fred Hoiberg's Big Ten refugee camp Iowa State team. The ACC behind UNC and Duke is very weak, the Big Ten will be favored to win the challenge again this year. And there's the Atlantic 10, Pac 12, C-USA, and SEC.
- In the next couple weeks on the site, I'll be bringing back the award-winning team by team Big Ten basketball previews, and plenty of content about Northwestern basketball as well. Also, we'll try to get the podcast going again; it's been on hiatus due to Rodger's computer nearly dying and me being too busy.
Edit: Here are the basketball team's new home uniforms. I watched every game last year and couldn't have told you these were new.