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Happy Anniversary: CHD reflects on 1965 national POY Bill Bradley

Perhaps the Blue Devils would have won an NCAA title a half-century ago had high school star Bill Bradley stuck with his initial decision to attend Duke in the fall of 1961.  However, after Bradley changed his mind and enrolled at Princeton, the accolades started to accumulate.  He scored more than 30 points per game for the freshman team, was named first-team All-American as a sophomore, won an Olympic gold medal for Team USA as a junior, and was named tourney MOP as a senior after scoring an NCAA-record 58 points in a consolation game win over Wichita State.  He graduated as the top scorer in Ivy League history but instead of going directly he went to Oxford after receiving a Rhodes Scholarship.  In 1979 he became the youngest member of the US Senate, and after winning a pair of NCAA titles with the Knicks he was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1983.  CHD’s Jon Teitel got to chat with Princeton AD Gary Walters about the remarkable career of his longtime friend.

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Bill received 75 college scholarship offers after being a two-time HS All-American and initially chose to attend Duke, but later decided to go to Princeton just three days before the 1961 fall semester began: what made him change his mind, and why did it take him so long to make his decision? I think that is actually an urban myth.

During his first year at Princeton he averaged 30 plus points per game for the freshman team and at one point made 57 straight free throws: what was his secret for free throw shooting? Repetition and muscle memory: he just practiced all the time and made the necessary adjustments. He is what Malcolm Gladwell would call a “physical genius”. Continue Reading

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High School Superstar: CHD interviews McDonald’s All-American Allonzo Trier

Many basketball “experts” consider Allonzo Trier to be the best pure scorer of any high school player in the country.  After starring for Findlay Prep this year, he will follow the path taken by fellow Findlay alums Nick Johnson/Brandon Ashley and take his talents to Tucson this fall to play for the Arizona Wildcats.  He won a gold medal with Team USA last year and scored a team-high 17 points to help his team win the McDonald’s All-American Game last week.  CHD’s Jon Teitel got to chat with Trier earlier today after he finished practiced in Portland, where he is preparing for this Saturday’s Nike Hoop Summit with fellow high school star teammates including Isaiah Briscoe (Kentucky), Jalen Brunson (Villanova), and Chase Jeter (Duke).

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You were featured on the cover of the New York Times Magazine back in 2009: what has been the biggest change in your life since then? Relocating all over the country and playing at different high schools, which has allowed me to have the success I have today.

Last year you won a gold medal with Team USA at the U18 FIBA Americas World Championships: how did it feel to see your former teammates Tyus Jones and Justise Winslow win an NCAA title last Monday night? I am very happy for them: who would have thought they would win it all as freshmen?  It was a special moment. Continue Reading

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Stanford Outlasts Miami To Take N.I.T. Crown

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Stanford’s Chasson Randle attempts to get to the rim versus Miami.

 

It has been a historic March for college basketball.

With each round of the NCAA Tournament, a new television viewing record is set. It is a testament to the depth and parity of the sport this year.

With that depth and parity came an unusual number of very talented teams left out of the Big Dance this year.

Their loss was the N.I.T.’s gain. Continue Reading

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The Final Four All-Stars: The Best of the Field vs. Kentucky

This past weekend, a few friends and I were driving south to a prominent gambling/restaurant/hotel chain known for rocking hard in hopes of forcing Lady Luck to pay our student loans for April. Like most twenty-something’s, we had had a few adult beverages before ultimately deciding to venture into the weekend home of some of the seediest individuals in Central Florida, as someone mentioned an itch to play a little Black Jack. As fast as you could say “Changing 500″, three of us (one in sweatpants, the other wearing golf shorts with a hole in the nether-region and the other in a Montreal Expos flat bill with ALL the stickers still on it), were running to the car.

We are your stereotypical dudes. And like most dudes, our conversations typically begin and end with sports. Around 30 or so odd minutes of bobbing and weaving our car through Florida’s AARP Gold Member’s, we found ourselves arguing if Kentucky could beat a D-League team. Continue Reading

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Reshuffling the Dekk (Finally)

Arizona v Wisconsin

There was something wrong with me. Not physically, mentally. A sort of blockage between my brain and my fingertips. A hyperbolic sickness that reared its ugly head every time I sat down to write.

From Christmas on, I took in college basketball as I always have, with every intention of putting pen to paper fingers to keyboard. But when that time came, I sat starring at a blank Word doc, fingers twitching.

I’d plug in a sentence or two. Scrap it. Start over. Hate my lead. Check Twitter. Try again. Stare at the cursor blinking, blinking, blinkingblinkingblinkingBLINKING. Only to slam my computer shut.  On and on it went. Continue Reading

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FINAL FOUR 2015: Kentucky Outlasts Notre Dame, now 38-0

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Kentucky survived Notre Dame’s best shot on Saturday Night, surviving to reach the Final Four.

The Wildcats sealed the win on two free throws with six seconds remaining by Aaron Harrison.  Jerian Grant drove the length of the floor but his double clutch three point attempt missed, giving the Wildcats the victory.

Kentucky and Wisconsin will meet in a battle of titans next Saturday in the Final Four in Indianapolis.