Bucking the Trend
I just read one of the best stories ever on GBI. It's about a young kid who plays his HS basketball for Park Tudor in Indy. The young man, who was once called "the best fourth grader in the nation" by one publication (I have no idea who rates fourth grade basketball players), decided to take two summers off of AAU basketball. He and his Dad decided the pressure had become too great and probably Kevin had simply stopped having fun playing summer ball.
If you've read BS regularly, you've probably heard me bemoan the evils of AAU ball- I know, it makes the players better, but there's a ton of shady business going on as these young men, many well-younger than driving age are deciding to spend their entire summers away from parents and under the supervision of someone else. Sometimes these guys are caring parents or mentors, but most of the time, they're slimy characters looking to wring as much out of these kids as possible.
So am I anti-AAU basketball? Absolutely. Good for Kevin Ferrell for bucking the trend to play basketball non-stop from the time a kid turns 10 to when he heads off to college...sounds like his two-year haitus is paying off. Might the young Mr. Ferrell be fresher, both mentally and physically, than the rest of his counterparts?
You in the market?
The Pacers made the difficult decision of ending the thugged-out era of professional basketball in Indiana quite quietly earlier this week. They decided to pay out Jamaal Tinsley's contract instead of allowing him to collect his salary while getting fatter and slower at home.
So, if you're in the market for a slowish point guard with a lousy attitude who's always packing heat, I know where you can call.
A Handsome Outlook
Alright, I've been a bit critical of Danny Hope's recruiting effort and the inconsistencies from last season to this season...I'll admit it. But I do really like Coach Hope. And, I think this class, like last year's, will probably turn out to be pretty solid- especially if a few guys decide they want to spend the next four years in West Lafayette.
But, one thing that can't be debated is the fact that Coach Hope is saying the right things and sending the right message. I don't know everything that goes on behind closed doors in the offices of Mollenkopf, but I do know a little bit...and his internal image is as positive as the face that he showed to the media in Chicago earlier this week.
Unlike his predecessor, there's not cautionary speak or "managed expectations". Coach Hope believes his team has the ability to surprise some teams...and anything other than utter failure will be surprising to most media outlets.
Plus, he wore a suit during the media meetings...a very refreshing departure from Coach Tiller's golf shirt and khakis look that became the norm. At least the new head boss acts like he wants to impress some people.
Something that I've wanted to see for a long time is some is a couple of good retro Purdue football jerseys...specifically a Drew Brees jersey. Well, the request has been answered...kinda.
I know it wouldn't make much sense to sell a retro Brees jersey without his name, but I'd think the Purdue purist would want it to be as close to the original as possible...especially for $79.00. Yikes! Granted, I'm not a big jersey-wearer, but eighty bucks for a lousy knock off seems steep.
Speaking of lousy knock offs...Holy Moly is this awful!
Is Nike really trying to tell me that their offering is the best their talented and large staff could achieve? Nike stinks. Their retro Alstott jersey reminds me of the jerseys people get at Wal-Mart...but the Wal-Mart version will allow you to keep about $65.00 more in your pocket.
Bucking the Trend