Sweet 16 Picks

Hey Haven its Matt Basile again, after a crazy first weekend in the NCAA tournament. If anyone is keeping pace with the ESPN Tournament Challenge, every bracket has at least two incorrect games. As of right now I’m currently in the 78th percentile, mostly because I did some last minute changes.

Now for my picks for the round of 16.
3 UCONN beats 2 SDSU because no team in the tournament is as hot as the huskies,
1 Duke beats 5 Arizona for two reasons: 1. Kyrie Irving is the best player in college basketball and 2. Derek Williams is out of miracles.
4 Wisconsin beats 8 Butler because Butler is the second worst team in the tournament at 3-point defense while Wisconsin is the third best in 3-point offense in the tournament.
3 BYU beats 2 Florida for the fact that Jimmer has not been stopped.
2 UNC beats 11 Marquette because UNC has who I think is the most underated player in the tournament In Kendall Marshall. He can distribute the basketball like no other guard in the country and plays very tough defense.
1 Kansas and 12 Richmond is a toss-up. I had Richmond in my Elite 8 from the beginning because they are of the two most underated teams in the tournament along with VCU. If Kansas can get a big lead early, I
don’t see the spiders having a shot, but if Richmond hgs in there early they will slip away and come up with
another upset.
11 VCU’s run stops when they fall to 10 FSU. FSU has the best field goal defense in the tournament by far.
1 Ohio State beats 4 Kentucky no question about it.

I have a good feeling about these games, it’s going to be another great weekend of basketball.

Thanks for reading and enjoy the madness.

2011 NCAA Tournament 2nd Round Predictions

Hello Haven, Basile here, I will be updating you with my knowledge and predictions of this years NCAA tournament. I turn 15 tomorrow, just a sophomore in high school, but I assure you my contribution to the haven will not go unchecked. In case you think I have no idea about college basketball, I enter about 15 different pools per tournament. In three years, I have won a total of $2310. Whether or not you find that impressive, doesn’t matter, I’m just here to help you win your pool.

This is going to be a tournament to remember, With no real superpower prepare for numerous bracket busters. My main second round upsets are #12 Memphis over #5 Arizona. Memphis has 3 power seniors and a very strong bench, expect a high scoring game. Also, I have #11 Missouri knocking off the #6 Bearcats of Cincinnati. Cincinnati has very talented interior presence, but the guard play of Mizzou dominates. Missouri has another advantage in their ability to play both fast and slow tempos. One 3 v. 14 match-up has me worrying. Although BYU is the favorite, do not be surprised if Wofford is in the 3rd round, maybe even the Sweet 16!!!!

Choose wisely and remember…. embrace the madness!

Wofford Nation

2010 a year in sports to remember

The Year of The Underdog

How will you remember 2010??? Will you think of the Tiger Woods situation , The world cup perhaps or maybe even Brett Favre and the end of his long and historic career. For me the way I’ll always remember 2010 is by the underdogs. We had 2 major sleepers win the 2 biggest titles in American Sports. Back in February the New Orleans Saints who had endured 42 losing seasons in franchise history took on the almighty Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts . The Saints pulled off the unthinkable upset and won the super bowl with maybe the gutsiest call in any super bowl… The inside kick to start the 3rd Quarter of play. The other major upset in sports this season was in the MLB. Even before the season began people started picking teams to win the fall classic. I was one how picked the Yankees. But I knew no on who was taking a team from the National league Western division , especially the San Fransisco Giants. But like the Saints the Giants found their way threw tight games and incredible pitching performances by young stars like Tim Lincecum and Matt Cain. 

Some other top moments of 2010 were the USA’s run in the world cup, The UCONN women’s basketball team winning 90 Straight games passing legendary UCLA and Jimmie Johnson winning his 5th straight Sprint Cup in NASCAR. This year was also a big year of deaths to famous people who impacted sports in major ways. Heres a list of some of the great people the world of sports lost in 2010:

  1. Bob Feller  (MLB)
  2. Bob Fenimore (NFL)
  3. Jim Hunter (NASCAR)
  4. Carl Braun (NBA)
  5. Manute Bol (NBA)
  6. Dorothy Kamenshek (Baseball)
  7. Lew Carpenter (NFL)
  8. Gil McDougald (MLB) 
  9. Franklin Mieuli (NBA)
  10. Dave Niehaus (MLB)
  11. Bob Probert (NHL)
  12. Don Merideth (NFL)
  13. Bob Sheppard (MLB)
  14. Rob Santo (MLB)
  15. Fred Schaus (NBA)
  16. Freddy Sez (Baseball)
  17. Chester Simmons (TV)
  18. Jack Tatum (NFL)
  19. Ralph Houk (MLB)
  20. George Blanda (NFL)
  21. Sparky Anderson (MLB)
  22. Bobby Thompson (MLB)
  23. George Steinnbrenner (MLB)
  24. John Wooden (Basketball)

(All of these individuals contributed so much to their respected sports and will be missed by everyone who follows the games that they have impacted so very much.)

Another big part of 2010 was controversy. With scandals like Reggie Bush at USC and the recruitment of Auburn QB Cam Newton many writers had a field day writing and saying things about these amazing athletes but at the same time mysterious people. Another big topic of 2010 was the Concussion Discussion in the NFL. With new rules put in place against big hits many people are questioning the toughness of the NFL but there are some who say that this needed (Those people don’t even watch football). My view on the topic is that you just shut up and play football. Think of back in the day when players had a little or sometimes no facemask. They were still knocking each other out and no we have tons of protection but we have become babies and want to take away the best part of football… CONTACT !! Overall I enjoyed the 2010 sprts season. Even though neither one of my 2 favorite teams (Yankees and Va Tech) had a chance to compete for a championship they still both had good season and the Hokies can still add to their glorious streak of 11 win in a row with a win against Stanford on Monday 1/3/11 on ESPN.

Heres a look back into all the championship winners in the world of sports for the year 2010:

MLB: San Fransisco Giants over Texas Rangers

NBA: Los Angeles Lakers over Boston Celtics

NHL: Chicago Blackhawks over Philadelphia Flyers

NFL: New Orleans Saints over Indianapolis Colts

Hope you all enjoyed your 2010 and I wish all of you a happy,healthy and successful 2011 !!

Hokie Guard Rasing Eyebrows

Unless you’ve been stuck under a rock for the last oh 2-3 months than you should know that NCAA men’ s basketball is EVERYWHERE in the sports world. The usual Kentucky, Kansas and Syracuse’s of the world are like always at the top of the Mountain that is the Associated Press Top 25 Poll. But there are some surprises like Connecticut, North Carolina and Louisville struggling in conference play and some sleepers such as New Mexico, Brigham Young and even my Virginia Tech Hokies who are really turning some heads in the college hoops universe. The major reason that the Hokies are in the position they are in (21-4 and 2nd in ACC ) is thanks to their star high voltage point guard Malcolm Delaney .Malcolm is from Baltimore,Maryland and was a top notch recruit with power forward  Jeff Allen of D.C. and guard Dorenzo Hudson from Charlotte,NC in 2007 the Hokies landed what is considered to be their greatest class ever. Delaney who is currently having his best year so far leads Tech in the points and assists per game categories. What Delaney does well that really not that many guards do in this day and age is dish the rock. With an aresenal of weapons like Jeff Allen and Dorenzo Hudson around him he has many options of getting the ball in the basket. The numbers speak for themselves at this point averaging 20 pts a game and 4 assists its no wonder why Delaney is in the ACC player of the year talks with Duke’s Jon Scheyer and Maryland’s Greivis Vasquez who are also doing all the right things for their teams to be competing for the ACC title. Now to the Hokies B-Ball Squad in general. Their 21-4 Record is a tad bit inflated due to the 4th worst non-conference schedule which included the Campbell Camels and Longwood Lancers who are both terrible opponents. So far Tech’s biggest win came in the friendly yet hostile confines of Cassell Coliseum where they knocked off the 25th ranked Wake Forest Demon Deacons. in the game Delaney did not disappoint racking up 31 points and 8 assists. The Hokies do however have a tough stretch ahead of them which includes a trip to crazy Cameron Indoor where John Scheyer and the Blue Devils will look to claim the #1 seed in the ACC Tourney. Next they face Boston College in Beantown than travel back down Route 81 to host Maryland and NC State. Tech then travels to Georgia Tech to close out their season against the Yellow Jackets and gain momentum heading into the ACC Tournament. This Season has been great but I expect the Hokies to be killer next year with Delaney, Allen , Hudson and key bench contributor JT Thompson entering their last years in the Maroon and Orange. From my PC to Yours Peace 🙂

Malcolm Delaney

Monster Week in College Hoops

Right now we stand about a month away from March Madness and that means that these next few weeks will be key to teams like My Hokies, Who are on the Bubble, The Kentucky Wildcats, Who are fighting for that number 1 seed category come tourney time, And probably the biggest letdown of the season thus far, The UNC Tarheels. Who are fighting for the highest seed that they can get. But before we get into March Madness we get a little treat known as Rivalry Week!!  This jam-packed week of College Hoops action kicks off tonight on ESPN at 7 pm with Nova at WVU  here is your week schedule of games:

Big Monday

  • Kicking off the week the 2nd ranked Villanova Wildcats  heading into the rowdiest and literally most hostile bunch of hillbillies in Morgan town,West Virginia  which also has the highest acceptance out of all other D-1 schools. Nova is still in GA GA land after they got a sick reality check in DC but I like the Wildcats in this one look for a big night from Scotty Reynolds.
  • The other match up has huge implications on the Big 12 with number 10 Texas traveling up north to Lawrence ,Ks to  take on the top ranked Kansas Jayhawks who like Villanova have streaky feel of a loss coming up at any point.   The Horns will Hook ‘Em with help from Damion James and his 29.4 pts a game.

Damion James

SUPER TUESDAY

  • In the Big 10 like the hot  7th Purdue Boilermakers going in to face Tom Izzo and the recently stunned number 5  Michigan State Spartans. Without star guard Kalin Lucas the Spartans may have a bit of trouble by on their hands when E’Twaun Moore and Robbie Hummel step on to the court up in East Lansing. I really like the offense that the Boilermakers bring to the table. Look for some upsetting expressions during the white out at MSU.

Robbie Hummel and JaJuan Johnson

  • Now to the SEC Where Bruce Pearl and the 14th ranked Vols take on hated instate private school 20th ranked Vanderbilt. The Volunteers haven’t lived up to their expectations coming into this season but are still ranked in the 20 and will have a place waiting come tournament time. On the other side Vandy will try to use the home court in Nashville to their advantage and the Commodores will prevail with the help Jermaine Beal and his 31 pts a game

WACKY WEDNESDAY

  • 1st on Wednesday the day of the disappointments begins with UCONN taking on number 5 Syracuse who has just been ELECTRIC thus far. The Huskies have struggled severely with a record of 14- 9 nothing like the UCONN teams of the Past. THEY ARE RANKED 11TH…11TH in the Big East!!!! On the other hand Syracuse is a potential Final Four pick and are tearing it up with junior Forward, Wesley Johnson who leads his team in boards and points per game. I look for UCONN’ s miserable season to continue with a blowout in the Carrier Dome.

Wesley Johnson

  • In the primetime slot another dismal vs highly ranked rivalry will take place when Kyle Singler and the 9th ranked Duke Bluedevils travel into Chapel Hill to battle with the terrible North Carolina Tarheels. This rivalry is one of the fiercest in all of sports and will never disappoint no matter how bad the two teams are. Right?…. Until this year!! Duke is going to destroy the tarheels in momentum, rebounding , tempo and most of all on the scoreboard. 

FANTASTIC FRIDAY

  • West Virginia and Pittsburgh…. A brawl waiting to happen if you ask me!! The Mountaineers who host Nova earlier in the week will look to crush the longtime rival Pitt Panthers. The game will be played in Pittsburgh so there is a slight edge there but in the end as much as I hate to say it… Tho Mountaineers should have no problem with a less talented Pittsburgh Squad.

PHYSCOTIC  SATURDAY

  • In the SEC Tennessee looks to stick with number 3 Kentucky and Diaper Dandy John Wall who will likely be one and done after this season. The Vols have a test in Nashville that they must ACE before having a chance in Wildcat Country. I think they pass their exam earlier in the week but have an epic failure when they step foot in the arena this Saturday

John Wall

Enjoy this rivalry week in College hoops it shouldn’t dissapoint!!! Peace Out 🙂

Freshman Guard Unstoppable!!!

Hey everyone, this is my second post. I want to talk about John Wall, freshman guard for Kentucky. John is currently projected as the number 1 pick in the 2010 NBA draft. Wall is 6’4″ and weighs 195 lbs. He is putting up monstrous numbers and helping the #3 ranked Wildcats to a 10-0 start. John’s averages are as followed….MPG- 35.1, PPG- 18.1, APG- 7.1, 3P %- .368, RPG- 4.1, and SPG- 2.8. John is an unbelievable player. His strengths are that he has the size to become a great player. He also makes many plays a game that show he has the potential to be a great overall player. The only thing I don’t like is that he will be drafted #1 overall to the Nets!! I was very surprised with his choice of college. Since he grew up in Raleigh, I thought he would go to UNC but sure enough he’s at Kentucky and they are a better team then UNC. Wall will be a great NBA player and I’m looking forward seeing him play in the NBA.
Also, I would like to thank Matt for letting me write for Sports Haven because I’ve always wanted to write in a sports blog.

John Wall

The greatest rivalries in all of sports

Well when you ask the question “What do you think of that rivalry” the immediate response that you will get is “Which one?.” Over the years many rivalries have been born. I am gonna tell you all my top 10 greatest rivalries of all time. The reason that I am only doing 10 is because I have a lot of homework to get done and because the list could go on forever. so I will start out with number  10 on my list.

10. Duke Bluedevils vs UNC Tarheels

This rivalry is always a great game to watch. I think whats so great about this rivalry is that its broadcasted all around the nation. Also many people who don’t even like either one of these two schools will still tune in and watch it.

Series lead Duke 128-97

9.New England Patriots vs Indianapolis Colts

This game is always a tough matchup for both teams. The reason this has become such a big rivalry is that the two best QB’s in the NFL are playing against each other. Also in the last 7 years this seem to always be the AFC championship game. I don’t like either one of these teams and I’ll still end up on the couch with a bowl of chips watching it.

Series lead Patriots 44-27

8.New York Giants vs Philadelphia Eagles

This game might not be up there in many peoples rivalry list,but being a Giants fan I always sit on the couch to watch this game. What I think is so great about this rivalry is that every time they play there is always a brawl on the field. They play and hit each other much harder when the other one comes into their house.

Series lead Giants 80-68-2

7.Chicago Bears vs Green Bay Packers

Another NFL rivalry this one goes way back. The city of “Cheese vs the city of “Wind” always a fun one to see. I think that now the Bears will have a chance to dominate the rivalry because now they don’t have to deal with Brett Favre . Also this is alwys a hard hitting and trash talking fiesta for players on both teams.

Series lead Chicago 90-79-6

6.Los Angeles Lakers vs Boston Celtics

This rivalry was born and dead about 13 or 14 years before I was even born. All I remember hearing about was the battle between Larry Bird and Magic Johnson. Also that they squared off in almost every single NBA championship during the 80’s. Now still both teams are dominate with Kobe for the Lakers and “The Boston three party” for the Celtics.

Series lead  Celtics 8-5

5. Pittsburgh Panthers vs West Virginia Mountaineers

This rivalry known as the “Backyard Brawl” for a reason. In this rivalry you’ll almost always see a good game. Also in the 07 edition of the rivalry Pittsburgh upset West Virginia and took away their National championship hopes. This rivalry like most NCAA sports this rivalry takes place in almost every sport.

4.St. Louis Cardinals vs Chicago Cubs

This rivalry is one that the fans and the players of each of these teams cares about a lot. I went to Wrigley Field once. There was a guy there who was wearing a Cardinals jersey and a hat with the logo on it. He was literally put through Hell !!! The security people even gave him a hard time. The Yankees were playing there at the time. but it just goes to show you there is bloody hate in sports.

Series lead Cubs 1137-1702 – ?

3. San Fransisco (NY) Giants vs Los Angeles (Brooklyn) Dodgers

This rivalry dates back to when the Dodgers were known as the “Dem Bums” and the Giants were playing in the Polo Grounds. Now as you all know both teams are out in California. There is always a lot of talk from the old days like Jackie Robinson and Willie Mays,Bob Thompson, and Pewee Reese. Any way that you look at it is probably the 2nd greatest MLB rivalry of all time.

Series lead Giants 1146-1123-17

2. Ohio State Buckeyes vs Michigan Wolverines

This rivalry is one of my all time favorite rivalries. I am not a fan of either one of these universities  but I always love to watch it anyway. The thing that makes this rivalry so great is that these are two of the most historic football programs out there.There always seems to be a Heisman trophy candidate on both of there rosters. Also the commercials on ESPN are hilarious when the guy jumps out of the car. Either way I still love the rivalry.

And the #1 Rivalry is the……….

1. New York Yankees vs Boston Red Sox Yankess vs Red Sox

This rivalry is one that will make friends and foes. The big one, the game that makes you just wanna rip the opposing teams fan’s head off. This is by far the Number 1 rivalry in my mind and many other New Yorkers along with the Bastard Bostonians. I have a friend named Colin and we have been best friends since kindergarten. We are almost exactly alike but he is a “Die Heart” Boston fan. So that is like the match that sets the whole friggen “bomb off”.All I have to say to get him to shut up is”26 -7″ that is it. I’ll admit it that the Sox have been on a rule for quite some time now but I have a feeling that pretty soon I’ll be saying to him”277

Hey you guy’s tell me what you guys think of my list. Also tell me if you all hated it and if you loved. If you hated it explain yourself  and who you think is the real Greatest Rivalry of all time.