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My Love of Basketball

by: The Cold Hard Truth


Long ago, I fell in love with basketball. I was 5 years old and living in Columbia, Missouri. My neighbor was an elderly woman named Mrs. Rice. In reality, she probably wasn't elderly - probably the same age I am now. One day while playing outside, Mrs. Rice approached me and handed me a brand new Voit basketball. It was a rubber ball. I didn't know anything about basketball and was not yet a connoisseur of basketballs and their quality. I just thought it was cool. She gestured towards a rim that was attached to her old, wooden garage and explained that I needed to dribble the ball and then throw it into the basket. It was love at first sight.

Now as I look back on it, I realize that the rim wasnít 10 feet high. The court was undersized and made of gravel. There was no place to run fast - like I ever could anyway - and mysteriously, that net would always get replaced as it wore out. There was no place to play an entire game. There was only room to shoot the ball, and shoot I did for hours. One thing that was plentiful was time, and there was plenty of room to think about ďstuffĒ as I practiced shooting. It was on that court that I developed a habit of shooting baskets and thinking about life, and I have carried that habit with me for 50 years.

I wore that ball out, until it was bald and I could see the under-threads on the seams. I never thought about why Mrs. Rice had this brand-new ball. I donít think she had kids, and if she did, they were all grown-up and long gone from their home by them. I bought my first basketball to replace Mrs. Rice's ball, another Voit, and wore it out too...and then another...and another. I think Mrs. Rice probably gave me one of the great gifts anyone has ever given me.

I moved away from Columbia in 3rd grade. I left Missouri a Tiger fan and a big basketball fan. I did return once to say hi to Mrs. Rice and to see my court, but it was only for a moment. Every place I have lived since then, I have had the pleasure of playing basketball and making friends. I have probably made more lasting friendships because of this great sport than with any other activity in my life. I also was lucky enough to coach my two sons in Upward Basketball. I have enjoyed battling my two sons playing 1-on-1 until they finally grew into adults and gained the pleasure of finally beating me. I still play them close and claim a moral victory for even competing. I don't know what I would do without basketball in my life.

Then on March 13, 2020, I learned what that might feel like. March Madness was cancelled. It was a tough year for many reasons for all of us. I still shot baskets and played ball privately with my boys during the summer on our home court. My court does have regulation height goals and an area probably 6 times the size of Mrs. Riceís driveway. I got to watch the NBA play in a "bubble" which was fun. However, there is just something special about March Madness. It is a time friends come together and share the great moments experienced in college basketball, and when it's missing, there is a part of me that's missing too.

Then, incredibly, we started playing college basketball again in November. It was empty gyms, weird and altered schedules, and no promise of a finale in March and early April. I watched Luka Garza, the center for Iowa, outscore the opposing team for an entire half. I felt like I was watching Wilt Chamberlain again. In the Missouri Valley Conference, they had made the decision to play opponents back-to-back, which is really a tough thing to do. I was excited to watch two really good teams, Drake and Loyola-Chicago clash. On February 13, surprising Drake (19-1) led Loyola of Chicago (17-3) by 3 at halftime. However, in the second half of that game, Loyola outscored Drake 50-20 and won by 27. The very next day on the very same court, Drake held Loyola to 50 points for an entire game and won 51-50. As a coach or player, how do you lose by 30 in the second half one day and win the next day by 1 against the same team? That is what makes college basketball so special. Both teams made the tournament - they each deserve their spots and will be fun to watch.

There were other surprises. I don't think anyone expected Michigan to be as good as they are this year. Cade Cunningham has put Oklahoma State on his back the last month of the season and the Cowboys are legitimate. That team deserves better than a 4 seed. I also think Loyola got ripped off with their 8 seed. This team is the #1 defensive team in the tournament and is in the Net Ranking and KenPom Top 10. I am very pleased that 101 year old Sister Jean gets to go to the game and cheer for her team. I understand that love for my team too!

The SEC was surprisingly deep and has very physical teams this year. I personally think Mississippi deserved an invite to the dance considering their tough conference competition. I also like the depth of the Big 10 and Big 12. On the other hand, the ACC seems a little overrated this year. The Pac-12 is again trending towards the weaker side. One early season example showed where Pac-12 champ Oregon lost to the SEC's 7th best team Mizzou. This will be a year without Kentucky or Duke. A year where Michigan State needed a late season surge to get in the tourney, and North Carolina is not themselves. This is a year where Virginia and Kansas enter March Madness having bowed out of their conference tournaments. Kansas may have doomed Oklahoma by having a COVID positive player. Now the Sooners are feeling the impacts of that situation leading into the first week.

My two biggest complaints other than some suspect seedings are the Committee making Drake play Wichita State and Michigan State play UCLA. Those 11-seed matchups could have been reversed. Give the "Mid-Major" teams an opportunity to beat a "Blue-Blood" team on a neutral court. What a wasted opportunity to make the tournament even more fun. The other big mistake - Belmont. They started the year 24-1...finished 26-4. No NCAA bid and No NIT bid. Yes, schedule matters, by their omission is so ridiculous.

Finally, we have some very interesting first round games. A talented Abilene Christian team goes against Texas; a very good Liberty team will play Oklahoma State, Arkansas plays a dangerous one loss Colgate team, and how good is Winthrop? Donít sleep on that team. I think having all these games played in Indiana is a really cool deal, and I definitely think it benefits Big 10 teams like Purdue and Illinois, who are very familiar with the area and donít have to travel very far. I also think the closeness will lead to some really fun and competitive games. A reduced crowd will take away advantages for larger schools. Something special is about to happen.

Actually, something special always happens whenever and wherever there is basketball. It was special for me at age 5 and it has been special every day of my life from 5 to 56. Last year cheated us a little bit. Something was taken away in 2020 that I always took for granted. This year we are lucky enough to get it back, and I for one am so very thankful. This is the sport I love, and I hope I can enjoy it with my friends until Iím 101 years old like Sister Jean! Best of luck to all my CBCC Dirty-Dawg friends. I hope your March Madness is as great as mine is about to be.


stories/21_cbcc_intro.html

My Love of Basketball

by: The Cold Hard Truth


Long ago, I fell in love with basketball. I was 5 years old and living in Columbia, Missouri. My neighbor was an elderly woman named Mrs. Rice. In reality, she probably wasn't elderly - probably the same age I am now. One day while playing outside, Mrs. Rice approached me and handed me a brand new Voit basketball. It was a rubber ball. I didn't know anything about basketball and was not yet a connoisseur of basketballs and their quality. I just thought it was cool. She gestured towards a rim that was attached to her old, wooden garage and explained that I needed to dribble the ball and then throw it into the basket. It was love at first sight.

Now as I look back on it, I realize that the rim wasnít 10 feet high. The court was undersized and made of gravel. There was no place to run fast - like I ever could anyway - and mysteriously, that net would always get replaced as it wore out. There was no place to play an entire game. There was only room to shoot the ball, and shoot I did for hours. One thing that was plentiful was time, and there was plenty of room to think about ďstuffĒ as I practiced shooting. It was on that court that I developed a habit of shooting baskets and thinking about life, and I have carried that habit with me for 50 years.

I wore that ball out, until it was bald and I could see the under-threads on the seams. I never thought about why Mrs. Rice had this brand-new ball. I donít think she had kids, and if she did, they were all grown-up and long gone from their home by them. I bought my first basketball to replace Mrs. Rice's ball, another Voit, and wore it out too...and then another...and another. I think Mrs. Rice probably gave me one of the great gifts anyone has ever given me.

I moved away from Columbia in 3rd grade. I left Missouri a Tiger fan and a big basketball fan. I did return once to say hi to Mrs. Rice and to see my court, but it was only for a moment. Every place I have lived since then, I have had the pleasure of playing basketball and making friends. I have probably made more lasting friendships because of this great sport than with any other activity in my life. I also was lucky enough to coach my two sons in Upward Basketball. I have enjoyed battling my two sons playing 1-on-1 until they finally grew into adults and gained the pleasure of finally beating me. I still play them close and claim a moral victory for even competing. I don't know what I would do without basketball in my life.

Then on March 13, 2020, I learned what that might feel like. March Madness was cancelled. It was a tough year for many reasons for all of us. I still shot baskets and played ball privately with my boys during the summer on our home court. My court does have regulation height goals and an area probably 6 times the size of Mrs. Riceís driveway. I got to watch the NBA play in a "bubble" which was fun. However, there is just something special about March Madness. It is a time friends come together and share the great moments experienced in college basketball, and when it's missing, there is a part of me that's missing too.

Then, incredibly, we started playing college basketball again in November. It was empty gyms, weird and altered schedules, and no promise of a finale in March and early April. I watched Luka Garza, the center for Iowa, outscore the opposing team for an entire half. I felt like I was watching Wilt Chamberlain again. In the Missouri Valley Conference, they had made the decision to play opponents back-to-back, which is really a tough thing to do. I was excited to watch two really good teams, Drake and Loyola-Chicago clash. On February 13, surprising Drake (19-1) led Loyola of Chicago (17-3) by 3 at halftime. However, in the second half of that game, Loyola outscored Drake 50-20 and won by 27. The very next day on the very same court, Drake held Loyola to 50 points for an entire game and won 51-50. As a coach or player, how do you lose by 30 in the second half one day and win the next day by 1 against the same team? That is what makes college basketball so special. Both teams made the tournament - they each deserve their spots and will be fun to watch.

There were other surprises. I don't think anyone expected Michigan to be as good as they are this year. Cade Cunningham has put Oklahoma State on his back the last month of the season and the Cowboys are legitimate. That team deserves better than a 4 seed. I also think Loyola got ripped off with their 8 seed. This team is the #1 defensive team in the tournament and is in the Net Ranking and KenPom Top 10. I am very pleased that 101 year old Sister Jean gets to go to the game and cheer for her team. I understand that love for my team too!

The SEC was surprisingly deep and has very physical teams this year. I personally think Mississippi deserved an invite to the dance considering their tough conference competition. I also like the depth of the Big 10 and Big 12. On the other hand, the ACC seems a little overrated this year. The Pac-12 is again trending towards the weaker side. One early season example showed where Pac-12 champ Oregon lost to the SEC's 7th best team Mizzou. This will be a year without Kentucky or Duke. A year where Michigan State needed a late season surge to get in the tourney, and North Carolina is not themselves. This is a year where Virginia and Kansas enter March Madness having bowed out of their conference tournaments. Kansas may have doomed Oklahoma by having a COVID positive player. Now the Sooners are feeling the impacts of that situation leading into the first week.

My two biggest complaints other than some suspect seedings are the Committee making Drake play Wichita State and Michigan State play UCLA. Those 11-seed matchups could have been reversed. Give the "Mid-Major" teams an opportunity to beat a "Blue-Blood" team on a neutral court. What a wasted opportunity to make the tournament even more fun. The other big mistake - Belmont. They started the year 24-1...finished 26-4. No NCAA bid and No NIT bid. Yes, schedule matters, by their omission is so ridiculous.

Finally, we have some very interesting first round games. A talented Abilene Christian team goes against Texas; a very good Liberty team will play Oklahoma State, Arkansas plays a dangerous one loss Colgate team, and how good is Winthrop? Donít sleep on that team. I think having all these games played in Indiana is a really cool deal, and I definitely think it benefits Big 10 teams like Purdue and Illinois, who are very familiar with the area and donít have to travel very far. I also think the closeness will lead to some really fun and competitive games. A reduced crowd will take away advantages for larger schools. Something special is about to happen.

Actually, something special always happens whenever and wherever there is basketball. It was special for me at age 5 and it has been special every day of my life from 5 to 56. Last year cheated us a little bit. Something was taken away in 2020 that I always took for granted. This year we are lucky enough to get it back, and I for one am so very thankful. This is the sport I love, and I hope I can enjoy it with my friends until Iím 101 years old like Sister Jean! Best of luck to all my CBCC Dirty-Dawg friends. I hope your March Madness is as great as mine is about to be.


Week 12 Combo Wrap for CFCC and PFCC

by: exRegionalWeenie (12/3/20)


Week 12 was the longest week of football we've ever seen. It began with early deadlines and lots of Thanksgiving over-eating, then descended into chaos with a record FIVE cancellations of our 15-game college slate. The week ended on the following Wednesday night when the Ravens-Stillers game was FINALLY played. You waited and waited to learn your CFCC/NCAA scores...and waited even longer to see how your PFCC/NFL scores fared. Many familiar names filled the leaderboards once the dust settled. We'll look at the college heroes first before recognizing the NFL winners.

Week 12 CFCC Stars: Woodrum, Douglas and Dunn
Shreveport, Louisiana's, Charlie Woodrum won the week by netting 77 points on a 9-1 record losing "just" his 14 game. Congrats, Charlie! Jerry Douglas also went 9-1 and only lost his 11 game, yet he lost to Charlie by 10 points. What?!?! That's not a typo. Charlie smartly used his 1 through 5 ranks on all 5 canceled games but Jerry used medium ranks on those same games. Remember - canceled games don't count so any points you put on those games can't count toward your score. Texan J. R. Dunn was tied with Jerry for second place with 67 points. Fourth place went to Dan Spaeth while two other Texans tied for fifth as Pat Vesper and Tim Garner both scored 61 points.

CFCC Season Standings: Stability at the Top
The Top 3 players heading into Week 12 made it through the week unchanged. The contest leader remains Mark Didrick and he's still followed by Steve Beaver in second place and Matt Hemingway in third. The overall Top 5 is rounded out by Larry Vannozzi and Tom Dang.

CFCC Group Play Standings: Separated by a Sliver
The Top 3 teams in group play are CLOSE - they're separated by just 2 points! At the moment, BuckNutz (comprised of Dirty Dawg's First Family - the Binau's) has the lead. The MVFRs and the Padookie Possum Trotters (wth?) are second and third, respectively.



...And now, onto the NFL...

Week 12 PFCC Studs: Avery Labeled #1
Glasgow is a tiny outpost in Montana with just 3,000 people. One of those people is Week 12 PFCC winner Mark Avery. Mark went 13-2 with 96 points - nice work! Ray Sondag and Loretta Harral had nice weeks, too, as both scored 88 points to tie for the week's second-highest score. Gregory Meffert and Steven Tensfeldt were close behind in fourth and fifth place, respectively.

PFCC Season Standings: O'Neill Maintains Large Lead
Matthew O'Neill had a mediocre week by scoring just 50 points in a week where the average score was 54. That was enough, though, for him to maintain a large lead in the year-to-date standings. One of the week's high scorers, Steven Tensfeldt moved up three slots and now holds onto second place. Barb Mayes Boustead slipped a notch into third place and is clinging to a one-point lead over Jonathan Guseman. Jonathan moved up three places and forced Greg (Wally) Waller down one slot into fifth place overall.

PFCC Group Play Standings: More Padookies
Leading a field of just 12 other competitors isn't typically such a great feat, but it's enough to get you mentioned on dirty-dawg.com. The Padookie Quack Attack holds the lead position. They appear to be highly correlated with a top CFCC team mentioned earlier - the Padookie Possum Trotters. Covid yur (sic) taters hold second place with a healthy lead over the BoomerBacks.



CFCC Week 10: COVID 15 Rather than COVID 19


by Shudda, Cudda, Wudda



It's absolutely great to have college football. The headlines most of the week were how many games had been called off due to COVID--15 games!!! We'll call it COVID 15. Ok, there we lost 15 games, but there were 44 that we played--about 75%. So get a life all you Glass is 1/4 empty people!; we had 3/4 of the games. However, I'm glad that these 15 games were not our 15 CFCC games.

There is one thing I'm still waiting for--the Conference Commissioners to address a contingency for if a team can't play in a championship game. They all seem very confident that the December 19th Championship Games will be played--have the back-alley payoffs already started?

Ok--enough of that--sorry. This week we actually had a docile week with only two mild upsets--Nebraska held on to beat Penn State in Lincoln, and Miami held on to beat Virginia Tech in Blacksburg. We lost two of our games due to COVID, leaving us with 13 games. Of those, we had four players who went 13-0. With the points not counting in these games, the highest possible score was 117, exactly what Dan Spaeth, Paducah, KY, and Matt Hemingway, Shreveport, LA scored.

Highlights of our games--man, how good is Indiana? Blanked Michigan State, 24-0--up to AP #9 now. Of the teams that might be flat on Saturday (Notre Dame after the big Clemson win and Florida after the big Cocktail Party win), neither team had any real issues with Notre Dame beating Boston College on the road, and Florida scoring at will on Arkansas.

In the overall standings, we have a few leader, Steve Beaver, Plymouth, MI, who moved from #4 to #1 this week, and has slowly reeled in the field, after starting in Week 1 at #96. Greg Meffert, Paducah, KY holds at #2, and Ted Champney who held #1 last week slid to #3. With Matt Hemingway's clean sheet this week, he blasted up from #33 to #6.

In team play, the Scurvy Dawgs elevated to #1 this week, with The Andy Griffith Show and Bucknutz sliding up one slot each to #2 and #3, respectively. Dawgzilla, last week's #1 started making their move toward "We're ready to take seventh place again!", by sliding back to #5. Padookie Possum Trotters has moved up into #4.

Next week, let's hope for better health with a real test (and how!) for Indiana as they travel #3 Ohio State, #10 Wisconsin visits #19 Northwestern, and Bedlam ensues in Oklahoma as #14 Oklahoma State travels to #18 OU. Stay safe--matter of fact, just stay home and watch these great games! Take care.

CFCC Top dawgs

Final Standings

Place Player Pts W L
1 Mark Didrick 1114 147 56
2 Mike Zwier 982 146 57
3 Laura Jones 980 143 60
4 Darone Jones 975 139 64
5 Steve Beaver 970 146 57
6 Matt Hemingway 970 140 63
7 Nick Hampshire 968 143 60
8 Ted Champney 964 144 59
9 Mike Seaman 963 143 60
10 Gregory Meffert 963 141 62
Full CFCC Standings

PFCC Top dawgs

Through Week 18

Place Player Pts W L
1 Walter Kolczynski 1297 168 72
2 Tyler Castillo 1290 168 72
3 Steven Tensfeldt 1282 167 73
4 Ted Champney 1280 170 70
5 Mike Fuhs 1280 165 75
6 Jared Lee 1279 166 74
7 Tammy Meffert 1279 163 77
8 Matthew O\'Neill 1276 167 73
9 Carl Lindecrantz 1266 167 73
10 Jane Banks 1261 158 82
Full PFCC Standings

CBCC Top dawgs

2021 Contest

Place Player Points
1 Joe Kunches 7817
2 Seth Binau 7653
3 Mike Seaman 7650
4 Hank Bauer 7631
5 Brian Swinford 7624
6 Ryan Hamill 7623
7 Simon Binau 7622
8 Mary C Embry 7573
9 Andy Lesage 7570
10 John Martynuk 7566
Full CBCC Standings

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