Dave’s Free Play, Monday 12/22/14
I’ll continue with my 2014 Media Awards with another best today. Play by play choice was yesterday, this time it’s TV analyst.
This is a difficult choice for me, as there are numerous candidates, and it’s tough to select just one. But I am going with Gary Danielson, who has been doing marquee college football games for many years. The former NFL QB never ceases to amaze me with how he’s able to see the entire field, and quickly explain just what’s taking place. It’s really like having a quarterback in the booth.
Danielson also fits that profile that I tend to like the most as a broadcast analyst. He’s not afraid to criticize, and Danielson also doesn’t gush over every player, which is an unfortunate trait for too many ex-players or coaches who are now behind a mic.
I don’t think there’s any chance Danielson would win a most popular contest, mainly because he’s not an over the top personality. That’s fine with me, as I’m more into getting good information and analysis, and from where I sit Danielson fits to a tee.
I had a really good run going with my NFL stuff, but drew a blank on three plays yesterday, and there were all legit losses. Fortunately, the college basketball went much better, so the day wasn’t awful, but the week was. It;s imperative I rebound strongly this week, simple as that.
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Bad call on the Rams yesterday as the free play, total misread as they played poorly and the Giants were the far sharper entry. I’ll look for a winner tonight in a neighborhood battle on the hardwood.
12/22 3:00 PM CBB (573) MANHATTAN vs. (574) FORDHAM
Take: (573) MANHATTAN -4
A little rivalry music please as Manhattan and Fordham take the court at Barclays Center as the warmup act for the Providence-Miami battle.
Things have not gone well this season for either the Jaspers or the Rams. In the case of Fordham, they took a huge early season hit when talented Jon Severe left the team for personal reasons. Minus Severe, getting the ball into the basket has been a difficult task for Fordham. There appears to be no chance the Rams will have much success in the rock solid Atlantic 10, where they’re going to be overmatched most of the time.
Manhattan is a flat out flop so far. The Jaspers were considered contenders in the MAAC prior to the start of the season, but they simply haven’t played well. The only wins have been against Binghamton, a very shorthanded Marist squad and Manhattan managed to get past Morgan State on Saturday to improve the ledger to a still very ugly 3-7. Like Fordham, the Jaspers have not been able to find the basket with enough regularity, and they’ve been highly prone to turnovers.
So there’s some reluctance to be sure about laying even a short price with Manhattan. Nevertheless, this would seem to be a good matchup for the Jaspers. Fordham has suffered from even worse ball security than Manhattan, and the one area where the Jaspers really excel is when it comes to forcing turnovers.
Revenge is a bit overrated as a whole, but in neighborhood duels like this one, I think it can be a factor. Manhattan blew a decent lead last season and lost straight up as a double digit favorite to Fordham.
Manhattan sure looks like a long shot right now to make a return trip to the NCAA Tournament. But I still show the Jaspers as the better squad here and I’m banking on their ability to get some extra possessions off their press to be a key tonight. I’ll side with Manhattan minus the reasonable spread this evening.