Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Pac Ten Alley

Todd Turner looks to be headed to Cleveland later this week to interview some candidates for the vacant women's basketball coach position.

Among those newly rumored as possible candidates are Georgia Tech coach MaChelle Joseph, Florida State coach Sue Semrau and South Carolina assistant Michelle Marciniak.

We ran a poll this week on who Turner would choose, and the overwhelming consensus has yielded a big yawn from Husky football fans. Even I almost voted for "who cares" which explains why he is looking for someone new to head the program.

I apologize for the brief focus on women's basketball, but with two weeks till Spring practice there just isn't a lot going on at this point til Ty fires it up. No surprises pre Spring as all four newcomers who were expected to enroll early are all here and eligible for Spring practice. Ty is going to be opening up quite a bit this Spring. Word is that up to half the practices this Spring are going to be opened up to the press, and public which if true will be great.

On the basketball side Joe Wolfinger's injury doesn't seem to be responding well again which means the Huskies may lose his services again next season if the isn't ready to go. Spencer Hawes is likely headed to the NBA draft pre draft camp to test his readiness. Spencer is a guaranteed top ten pick so the rest is up to him. Once again, I think he hangs around a couple more years.

Let's take a walk down Pac Ten Alley and see what the neighbors are up to this week.

USC starts Spring practice and deals with the loss of kicker Mario Danelo.

Joe Danelo surveyed the scene as USC players ran from one drill to the next during practice on Sunday, the flurry of activity stirring fond, cathartic memories for the father of late Trojans kicker Mario Danelo."This is just where Mario used to be," Joe said. "Part of his memory is out here. It's good to be out here with the kids."

Jeff Tedford treats football like a chess game.

To Cal coach Jeff Tedford, calling plays in football is a lot like playing chess. You think multiple moves ahead. You choose plays not only for immediate gratification, but also as part of a grand plan for a bigger payoff later in the game. Step by step, you set the stage to hopefully spring the perfect offensive play against the perfectly vulnerable defense. "And then bang, it happens," Tedford said Thursday, sitting in his office, just hours before another spring practice. "It's exciting. It's invigorating. "There's a great feeling of excitement when you can kind of set things up through the field and call something right when (it) matches up. Because you've studied it and you saw it and then, bam! Your team is able to do it."

OSU is still strong this year in baseball.

On the diamond, the No. 5 Beavers swept their three game series against San Fransisco. OSU opened on Friday with a 11-4 win behind the hot bats of Hopkins, Lissman, Canham, and others. On Saturday, the Beavers won by a large margin again, 9-2. Seven of those nine runs came in the first inning. Sunday, the Beavers capped off the sweep with a narrow 3-2 victory. Oregon State snuck in two runs with two outs in the bottom of the ninth. This stretches the Beavers overall win streak to nine games, and gives them an 20-3 overall record.

The Oregon Duck's knocked on the door of the final four, will Ernie Kent stay on or use the high finish for leverage to get a more stable job?

It was a great ride and provided many hours of first class basketball. If not for some early foul trouble and some cold outside shooting these Ducks would be making the trip to Atlanta.You all probably watched or listened to the game so I won't go over the scoring leaders. I just wanted to say thanks to this class of Ducks for a fantastic season, it was good times.

UCLA readies itself for a trip to the Final Four.

There is some great discussion going on in the comment threads about the match ups for Saturday. If you are thinking that something feels different this year (wrt to this UCLA v. Florida matchup), you are not alone. There are number of reasons why we are feeling a little better about this game than we did last year.

WSU readies itself for a return to "Poop Island".

Meanwhile, we at the WSU blog are taking suggestions from all on what to Title the vessel of the upcoming implosion known as 2007 Cougar Football (this is meant to replace "King of Poop Island")...

Stoops is under pressure to put together a winner at Arizona.

The University of Arizona's defense is going to get better against the pass this spring. It has to, considering it will see an aerial assault every minute of every day in workouts against the new offense.

If you are a coach looking for a head basketball job there are suddenly plenty of jobs open which means assistants like Cameron Dollar may be getting the big step up in a couple of weeks once the big boys finish feeding.

If you’ve ever thought about getting into the coaching business, this is your chance!
Never have there been so many jobs open out west. A few have been filled, but many more remain vacant — and even more could open in the next few weeks as the trickle-down effect takes hold.

This is a very entertaining blog that finds things to talk about even when the Sun Devils are floundering.

I absolutely adore March Madness. While the first two rounds are tailor-made for ditching out of work to go to a bar, the second two are perfect for at-home viewing. There are only two games going at a time, requiring a bit more focus than you can get at a bar, specifically the option of sound.

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