For too long now I have entertained pie-in-the-sky notions about a Pipeline college basketball project. The projects in my mind have taken various, mostly unrealistic shapes until now. Now I have an idea and an incentive. The incentive is courtesy of my fantasy basketball league, the Rock and Roll Dogs. This year’s annual Milwaukee bash will feature the Marquette/Pittsburgh game on March 3 instead of our usual Bucks game. I think it’s a welcome change of pace, and it inspired me to cover both Marquette and Pitt, and by extension the Big East, all season long and post about it periodically.
As it happens, both Marquette and Pitt are good this year. With an undefeated record, #5 (AP) ranking, and big win tonight, Pitt looks like an early Final Four candidate. Marquette is ranked #17 and is also undefeated after pounding an out-manned Eastern Michigan team tonight. Throw in the fact that the game is the regular season finale in the Big East, and you have the makings of a hot game to lead right into tournament time.
I haven’t seen either team play yet this year, but it looks like the best player on either team is probably Aaron Gray, Pitt’s 7-0 senior Center. NBADraft.net has him slated to go 19th next year. That’s obviously a projection this far away from the June draft, but he’s a big guy who has experience and has rebounding numbers in the conference. Pitt also looks to be very deep. Marquette is just solid and well-coached.
I know what you’re saying right now. You’re saying, “But why does he get to have all the fun?” But don’t despair, because my plan involves some of you too. Well, perhaps one or two of you. But which two?
I figure there have to be at least some people reading this blog who are actively following a team in another conference besides the Big East. I know for a fact a bunch Pipeline People are Big 12 followers. Several Pipeline People have Big 10 interests, and I know at least three people who follow the Missouri Valley Conference, though I’m not sure any of them are readers. But that’ll be their loss when this project blows up!
I should clarify what modest criteria I have to judge when this thing “blows up”. My goal is to have some people write in to me, either via email or the comment function, any observations they might have of the league they are following. You know, anything they read or have watched, the usual items of note when you follow a conference. My most outlandish dreams have a network of Pipeline People who sign up, each one taking a major and a mid-major to follow, but obviously I’ll settle for just a conference, or a team.
Or really, anything at all about college hoops. My goal isn’t to adhere to some rigid observational format as much as it is to just get involved with the college basketball season in a way I haven’t been in a long time, and that’s much easier to do when you know you’re going to be seeing an important game at the end of the year.
Drop me a line or comment to let me know if you’re interested in something like that.