Midnight Madness is here
espn is getting back to the good old days by televising four hours of Midnight Madness tonight starting at 9pm ET on ESPNU. the NCAA officially allows practice to begin at 7pm - not that you'd know it by looking at NU's website. all they want to talk about is hosting career fairs as part of basketball games.
but i can't bash NU for not having an event tonight. while Jay Wright and Billy Gillespie have the luxury of enthusiastic students and a packed house, even places like Purdue and Illinois are wary of committing to a big event without a guaranteed capacity crowd. NU can't get fans (students or otherwise) to show up for regular season Big Ten games, so i don't like the chances of people showing up for practice on a Friday night in October.
- NU returns their nucleus of Thompson, Coble and Moore, so they will be better. i don't necessarily agree. yes, it will be good to have Coble for the entire season, but it's not exactly like these guys lit the league on fire last year. a year more experienced is a not a year taller or faster. however, i will use Tavaras Hardy as an example of improvement over time. he went from fouling out with 0 points and 1 rebound as a freshman to a pretty darn serviceable player as a senior.
- Kyle Rowley and Luka Mirkovic are tall, so NU won't get killed on the boards again. while certainly the 'cats will get more rebounds this year, by accident if nothing else, we don't need to remember too far back to find tall guys who couldn't do squat for us. i'll wait until i see them play before i declare the freshmen as our forward/center saviors.