Sunday, March 1, 2015

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For March 1st, 2015

By Gregory Crawford---- TV, Print and Radio Basketball Analyst--- on twitter @wchoops @crawssportsbiz @kcsportsmgmt

Crawford's Best Nine--- The best nine teams that play in the six D-1 leagues out west. Very tough, but fun to do.

9. UC Davis---- Continue to play well and will win the Big West regular season. Have won 13 of 15.

8. San Diego State--- Tied for the league lead in the toughest league out west, Mt. West, but suffered a tough home loss yesterday to Boise State.

7. Oregon---- Huge game today at Stanford, in 3rd place in Pac-12, one game lead over Stanford.

6. Utah----When the Utes were winning big, some were saying, not me, a Final Four team. Now they will not even win the Pac-12 regular season title, but still a great year.

5. BYU--- Playing some of the best basketball in the country right now, huge road wins at both Portland and Gonzaga vault the Cougars up to 5th spot.

4. New Mexico State--- Continue to roll in the WAC Conference, will easily win the league and have won 14 of 15.

3. Boise State---- Best team in the country no one talks about. Just completed a road sweep of New Mexico and San Diego State, have won 12 of last 13.

2. Gonzaga----Despite having their 41 game home winning streak snapped yesterday by BYU, they still are worthy of number 2. Will be interesting to see how they do in WCC tourney and NCAA.

1. Arizona--- They have earned it big time. Huge win yesterday at Utah and easy to forget, but beat Gonzaga earlier in season.

Bad Basketball---- In picking Crawford's Best Nine, I do have to say and it is painful, this is one of the weakest years I have seen overall for college basketball out west. Of the six D-1 leagues out west, there really is no strong league, the best of the bunch is the Mt. West.

I still think Gonzaga has a great chance to get to the Final Four, but the loss at home yesterday to BYU was nothing short of shocking.

It is also fun to see a surprise team doing really well in the Big Sky, as Sacramento State has a one game lead over Montana and Eastern Washington going into the final week of league play. The Hornets have played well all year long. If they win the league, they will host the entire Big Sky playoffs, but it will not be in their regular place on campus, the "Nest", which does not meet NCAA standards for attendance. They will play on campus, in the "Well", which is the PE and Wellness Center and will seat about 3,000 with the addition of portable seating being brought in.

None of the other great places to play in Sacramento are available during the time of the tournament.

No matter what is has been a great time and year for Sacramento State.

Crawford's NWAC Power Rankings---- Now here is a league, that is not part of the NCAA, but instead community college basketball that has great coaches, great players and great teams. So with only 2 days left in the regular season, time for double dose of Crawford's NWAC power rankings, starting with the women's teams first. As always, we do things in 9s, out of respect for the great game of golf.

Crawford's Women's Power Rankings

9. Highline
8. Lane
7. Bellevue
6 Wenatchee Valley
5. Centralia
4. Walla Walla
3. Umpqua
2. Lower Columbia
1. Peninsula

Crawford's Men's Power Rankings

9. Lane
8. Columbia Basin
7. Clackamas
6. Highline
5. Wenatchee Valley
4. Big Bend
3. Clark
2. Edmonds
1. Bellevue

more of Gregory's blogs--- (golf and sports biz, 365 days per year).

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For February 28th, 2015

By Gregory Crawford--- TV, Print and Radio Basketball Analyst--- on twitter @wchoops @kcsportsmgmt @crawssportsbiz

Crawford's NBA Power Rankings----It is Saturday, so that means another edition of Crawford's world famous NBA power rankings. Always done in 9s, out of respect for the great game of golf.

9. Clippers
8. Toronto
7. Chicago
6. Portland
5. Memphis
4. Cleveland
3. Houston
2. Atlanta
1. Golden State

BYU--- The Cougars were in my hometown of Portland, Oregon this past week to play the U of Portland Pilots, in which they won the game 82-69.

It was a good chance for me to talk with many BYU people and ask them a question which is often brought up, "Is BYU committed to the West Coast Conference?"

Now for sure I could be told anything, but people I seek out are usually very honest and candid. To a person, they all told me that BYU loves being in the West Coast Conference and they plan is to stay for a long time.

Of course the talk is always generated by the fact the West Coast Conference is not a football league and BYU football is big time and now plays as an independent.

My analysis is that in all sports but football, BYU is going nowhere, which is great for the WCC.

Oregon Ducks--- Big question around the state of Oregon is will the Ducks make the NCAA tournament. With a huge match-up on Sunday at Stanford and then a tough road contest at Oregon State on Wednesday night, my feeling is that the Ducks have to win both of those games to make the NCAA tournament. Sitting at 21 wins right now, there just is not enough quality wins for Oregon at present, to make them a lock. If they do not win the Pac-12 tournament, I think they have to get to 24 wins to get in.

Crawford's NBA Bottom Power Rankings----Sports should be fun, so I am expanding my NBA power rankings to give you the worst nine teams in the league. Per usual, once again, we do things in 9s.

9. Boston
8. Detroit
7. Denver
6. Orlando
5. Sacramento
4. Lakers
3. Philadelphia
2. Minnesota
1. New York----Yes, sadly the Knicks per my power rankings, are without question the worst team in the league.

more of Gregory's blogs--- (golf and sports biz)

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For February 24th, 2015

By Gregory Crawford--- On twitter @wchoops @crawssportsbiz @kcsportsmgmt

Court Storming----How do you stop it. I am really not sure, but I am sure someone will get seriously hurt and I have thought that long before the major bad incident last night in the Kansas State-Kansas game.

Like everything else it will take someone to get seriously hurt, before some major solutions come into play. While I am on this rant, once again let's do away with the after game handshake line in college and high school basketball. Quit crying about sportsmanship and start thinking about how many incidents take place after games. There are many more than you think. Finally, I have not talked to one coach that disagrees with me on the after game handshakes.

Cascade Collegiate Conference---- My second favorite college basketball conference right behind the NWAC Sports has some key playoff games tomorrow night, all local starting times of 7:00 pm. So how about a few score predictions and I am going completely with the chalk.

Oregon Tech 83 @ College of Idaho 102
Corban 59 @ Warner Pacific 64
Eastern Oregon 93 @Concordia 99
Northwest Christian 78 @ Southern Oregon 79

Derrick Rose--- So sad to see this terrific player hurt again and probably out for the season, with another knee injury for the Chicago Bulls.

It will be Rose's 3rd knee surgery in 3 years and one can only hope he will come back healthy.

more of Gregory's blogs---- (sports biz and golf, 365 days per year)

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For February 22nd, 2015

By Gregory Crawford--- TV, Radio and Print Basketball Analyst---- on twitter @wchoops @crawssportsbiz @kcsportsmgmt

Crawford's Best Nine---- It is Sunday, so time for another edition of Crawford's Best Nine, the nine best teams at the moment who play in the six D-1 leagues out west.

9. Sacramento State----Hornets have won 9 of 11, tied for Big Sky lead, finish with 3 tough games on the road, at a dangerous Portland State team next Saturday.

8. Boise State----Another solid year under Leon Rice, who obviously is a really good basketball coach.

7. UC Davis--- The class of the Big West still, have won 12 of 13 and show no signs of slowing down.

6. BYU----Big road trip to finish the WCC regular season, in Portland on Thursday and Spokane on Saturday.

5. New Mexico State----Have now won 14 of 15, a team I am sure no one wants to play in the NCAA tourney.

4. San Diego State--- Aztecs lead the best basketball conference out west, the Mt. West by one game, have won 7 of 8.

3. Arizona----Strong team, in holding patter right now, just keep winning games.

2. Utah---- A shade higher than Arizona, showdown game next Saturday in Salt Lake City with the Wildcats, but must get by a really good Oregon team, a noon contest today.

1. Gonzaga---- Down 17 yesterday at St. Mary's, but Zags do what they do best in the regulars season, win games. Team has Final Four written all over it.

Cascade Collegiate Conference----More evidence of why this league is the best D-2 NAIA men's basketball conference in the country. Regular season play ended yesterday, with 3 teams as co-champs. Congrats to Warner Pacific, Concordia and College of Idaho.

C of I won the tiebreaker, so they get the number one seed, let the playoffs begin. This league does it right when it comes to playoffs, as 8 of the 10 teams get in, the top four seeds host games, the top seed winners continue to host games. A very fair way to do things.

A big difference here. The Big Sky Conference has the same amount of teams in the playoffs, but every game is played at the home site of the regular season league winner. Why not let the top seeds host at least one playoff game. It does not make sense to me. Penalizes the fans and teams.

While we are discussing playoffs, it is about time the very tough D-3 Northwest Conference got out of the dark ages and get more teams in the playoffs for basketball. At present four of the nine teams in the league make postseason. How about six making it, 3 plays 6, 4 plays 5 and the winners get 1 and 2. If these leagues really want to be known for their  student/athletes, then you expand the playoffs and make it a great college experience.

Crawford's NWAC Women's Power Rankings----It is Sunday, so time again for Crawford's NWAC power rankings for the women's teams. It has been a great year of basketball, but big shake up this week, as the team's head to the final week of regular season play.

9. Blue Mountain
8. Columbia Basin
7. Highline
6. Walla Walla
5. Peninsula
4. Centralia
3. Bellevue
2. Umpqua
1. Lower Columbia

Yes a new number one, well deserved.

more of Gregory's blogs--- (golf and sports biz, 365 days per year)

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For February 21st, 2015

By Gregory Crawford--- TV, Radio and Print Basketball Analyst---- @wchoops @crawssportsbiz @kcsportsmgmt

Crawford's NBA Power Rankings---- As always you get the most famous and accurate basketball power rankings, with Greg Crawford On Basketball. It is Saturday, so that means NBA power rankings, big shake up and as always we do things in 9s, out of the great respect for the game of golf.

9. Milwaukee
8. Dallas
7. Clippers
6. Oklahoma City
5. Cleveland
4. Atlanta
3. Memphis
2. Toronto
1. Golden State

It is going to be a great March and April in the NBA, with so many battles for playoff spots in both Conferences.

Kyle Wiltjer---- Sometimes D-1 college basketball players transfer for all the wrong reasons. In the case of Kyle Wiltjer, who tranferred from Kentucky to Gonzaga, it was a brilliant move. A move I might add that was totally supported by Kentucky coach John Calipari.

Never mind the fact Wiltjer scored 45 on Pacific Thursday night. He has become a West Coast Conference star indeed and part of that reason, Wiltjer has become a power player down low, with his scoring and rebounding.

His Zags are 26-1, heading to a huge game tonight at St. Mary's, which almost certainly will be the last hurdle for the 15-0 Zags to running the table in the WCC, as them come home next week to meet BYU and San Diego, two teams they should beat at home for sure.

Wiltjer almost certainly this year would have been to the NCAA Final Four had he stayed at Kentucky, but he has a great chance this year of going to a Final Four with Gonzaga, plus being on the floor in the Final Four, something that would have been tougher with the Wildcats.

NBA Draft--- Starting next Friday and every Friday in Greg Crawford On Basketball, we will be giving you in-depth coverage of the 2015 NBA Draft. No, we do not do mock drafts until the day before draft day, but instead we tell you about many players to watch and our own personal evaluation.

State of Oregon--- Never can forget my home state of Oregon and the great basketball games that will take place today.

Oregon State hosting Colorado
Portland State hosting Northern Colorado, with huge playoff implications on the line
A host of NWAC Sports games, including Umpqua visitig Clackamas CC in a key game.
Cascade Collegiate Conference, so much riding on their final day of regular season.
Northwest Conference, with the headliner, Pacific at Willamette, final playoff spot up for grabs

NJIT---- Today in (golf and sport biz, 365 days per year), I talked about New Jersey Institute of Technology and the school being the only totally D-1 independent athletic program in the country.

Earlier this year, NJIT beat 17th ranked at the time Michigan on the road. Obviously it was not a fluke, as the men's basketball team is now 16-11 and having a great season.

more of Gregory's blogs---- (golf and sports biz, 365 days per year)

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For February 19th, 2015

By Gregory Crawford--- on twitter @wchoops @crawssportsbiz @kcpsortsmgmt

Jerome Kersey---- The passing yesterday of Jerome Kersey is sad, sad, sad. So many great tributes to him from fans, teammates, coaches, ex-teammates and the NBA family. They have said it all.

Kersey's passing also is another strong sign of just how important the Portland Trail Blazers are to the people of Oregon and SW Washington. If you honor the fans here as Kersey did when he was a player and as person who stayed in the community, they are going to honor you 100 times over.

There is a reason why so many players, some who played very little, often choose to spend the rest of their  life in the community that adored them.

Crawford's NWC/CCC Power Rankings----- It is Thursday, so that means another combo edition of Crawford's Northwest Conference/ Cascade Collegiate Conference men's basketball power rankings.

9. Northwest Christian
8. Puget Sound
7. Lewis and Clark
6. Southern Oregon
5. Warner Pacific
4. Concordia
3. College of Idaho
2. Whitman
1. Whitworth

Cascade Collegiate Conference----The CCC is the best D-2 NAIA men's basketball conference in the country and once again it is having a tremendous race for home seedings in the upcoming 8 team league playoffs.

It appears College of Idaho is in the driver seat to win the regular season title, with a one game lead over Warner Pacific and Concordia. C of I finishes the season at Northwest and Evergreen, two teams they should beat, but you never know.

The race for 2nd through 4th place is going to be exciting with so much on the line. Warner Pacific and Concordia, travel to Oregon Tech and Southern Oregon, very tough places to play on the road.

When we wake up Sunday morning, who knows where a team will be positioned to start the playoffs next week. The one constant, the basketball is great, exciting and so well coached.

more of Gregory's blogs---- (golf and sports biz, 365 days per year)

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For February 18th, 2015

By Gregory Crawford---TV, Print and Radio Basketball Analyst---- on twitter @wchoops @crawssportsbiz @kcsportsmgmt

NBA Attendance----On most Wednesdays, we try and take a look at NBA attendance. As play begins again tomorrow in the NBA, some things never change.

1. Bulls continue to lead the league is average home attendance---- 21,882 per game and that is 104 % of capacity.

2. Both Memphis and Atlanta are having magical seasons, but not at the game. Memphis is 16th in overall attendance with an average crowd of 17, 187, 94% of capacity and the Hawks play before an average of 16,864, 90% of capacity. Very sad figures indeed for two great teams.

3. It is also interesting to note that two teams that are having tough years, New York and Miami, have sold out every game so far, a credit to both of those organizations and great fans.

Kevin Durant--- Today Durant apologized to the media for going off on the media during all-star weekend.  There is no disputing that Kevin Durant has been more confrontational  this year in many areas, which tells me my assessment of the fact Durant, Kevin Love and Russell Westbrook will all be Lakers when their contracts allow is more of a possibility than ever.

Crawford's NWAC Power Rankings---It is Wednesday, time for another edition of Crawford's NWAC Sports men's basketball power rankings. These are getting tough, but someone has to do them. Remember, we always do things in 9s, out of the great respect for the game of golf. There is a full slate of NWAC basketball games tonight, you need to be there for sure.

9. Spokane
8. Lower Columbia
7. Clark
6. Columbia Basin
5. Edmonds
4. Big Bend
3. Chemeketa
2. Highline
1. Bellevue

Danny Ferry----On September 12th, Danny Ferry took a leave of absence from his position of general manager of the Atlanta Hawks, over remarks he was attributed too, regarding race.

One of America's most prominent Civil Rights leaders and resident of Atlanta, Andrew Young spoke out today and strongly urged both Ferry and the Hawks to bring him back. Young's endorsement certainly will have a big impact on Ferry' future.

I am pretty sure no one thinks Ferry is a racist. But, what I am not sure of, is he really that good of general manager? Something for everyone to consider. We all say and do the wrong things from time to time, but we all better be good at our jobs, or we are not going to keep them.

more of Gregory's blogs--- (golf and sports biz, 365 days per year)