The Toughest College Basketball Courts to Play On

Posted By Andre Abrede

The logistics of college basketball make the game unique in terms of the importance of the ‘home court’ advantage. For example, the games are staged indoors, usually ‘on-campus,’ in facilities that are generally decades-old and full of historic importance. These venues are also almost always filled with students who tend to be loud, raucous and unforgiving.

Following are ten of the most difficult college basketball courts to play on, most notably for the opposing team.

10. Vanderbilt Memorial Gymnasium in Nashville. Capacity: 14,326, opened in 1952.
Although the Commodores has never been a consistent national power, they are historically more than competitive when playing at home. Memorial’s unorthodox configuration (the court is elevated and benches are situated beneath the baskets) can be unsettling for the opposition, as frequent upsets by Vanderbilt demonstrate.

9. The Carrier Dome in Syracuse, N.Y. Capacity: 35,000, opened in 1980.
Size alone makes this cavernous facility imposing. The largest on-campus venue in the nation, the Carrier Dome holds the on-campus, single-game attendance record (35,466 versus Duke on 2/1/14), and the Orangemen have Hall of Fame coach Jim Boeheim on the sideline.

8. McCarthey Athletic Center in Spokane, Wash. Capacity: 6,000, opened in 2004.
Home to the Gonzaga Bulldogs, the ‘Kennel’ boasts one of the most impressive home-court marks in the NCAA (162-12 from 2004-2016). The comfortable confines have helped the ‘Dogs become a national power in recent seasons.

7. Hinkle Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. Capacity: 15,000, opened in 1928.
Anyone who’s seen the film ‘Hoosiers’ should be familiar with the on-campus home of the Butler Bulldogs, which held the distinction of being the largest basketball facility in the nation for two decades. Notable fact: Hinkle’s playing surface is the original floor that was placed in 1928.

6. WisePies Arena, (aka the ‘Pit’) in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Capacity: 15,412, opened in 1966.
The ‘Pit’ is so named for its geographical features (situated at an elevation of 5,312 feet and located 37 feet below ground level), the ‘Pit’ is understandably deafeningly loud and provides a challenge regarding breathing and stamina for the opposition.

5. Kohl Center in Madison, Wis. Capacity: 17,230, opened in 1998.
Combine great coaches and players with an almost rabid fan base and you’ll quickly resurrect a long-dormant program like the Wisconsin Badgers. UW has won more than 87% of their games in Kohl.

4. Assembly Hall in Bloomington, Ind. Capacity: 17,222, opened in 1971.
Basketball is practically a religion in Indiana, and along with Hinkle Fieldhouse, Assembly Hall is hallowed ground in the state. The Hall’s unique steep-sided seating architecture can be unnerving to opponents, literally ‘washing’ them in noise.

3. Rupp Arena in Lexington, Ky. Capacity: 23,500, opened in 1976.
Downtown Lexington becomes a virtual ghost-town on home game days when the Wildcats play host to (usually) unlucky opponents. UK is the winningest program in NCAA history, greatly helped by the Big Blue winning 89% of their home contests.

2. Allen Fieldhouse in Lawrence, Kansas. Capacity: 16,300, opened in 1955.
When a basketball court bears the name of the game’s inventor (James Naismith Court), it’s safe to assume that the occupants take their basketball seriously. Such is the case in the ‘Phog,’ where five national championship banners are on display, and the Jayhawks are almost always championship contenders.

1. Cameron Indoor Stadium in Durham, N.C. Capacity: 9,314, opened in 1940.
Cozy-looking and surrounded by the pastoral Duke campus, Cameron is more often than not viewed by opponents as a nightmare when the Blue Devils take Coach K Court. The Cameron Crazies are loud, inventively clever with their heckling, and Mike Krzyzewski always has a deep roster loaded with blue-chippers, making a visit to Cameron quite a challenge.

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  • about 1 year ago


Celebrities Who Played College Basketball

Posted By Andre Abrede

There are quite a few celebrities who played college basketball, and this article will help the reader understand who played in their glory days. There are some surprises on the list, and you might learn something about your favorite famous person. Many people are not aware of how these people spent their younger lives, and you might start to see these people from a new perspective.

#1: Denzel Washington

It has been some time since Denzel played college basketball, and he is the probably the most well-known person who makes this list. He was not a stand out, but has said that he felt the game helped to prepare him for life. The fearless attitude that he learned while playing college basketball helped him become a better actor and person.

#2: Leslie Jones

Leslie Jones is quite tall, and it is not surprising she was a basketball player dating back to her youth. She has been one of the funniest women in the world for some time, and she gets her tenacity from the basketball court where she refused to be backed dowwn at any time.

#3: Robin Roberts

Robin Roberts got her start in the media as a member of the broadcast team on CBS News in Atlanta, and she played college basketball as a part of her upbringing. She has been poised her whole career, and much of that may be attributed to how she conducted herself on the court.

#4: Sinbad

Sinbad is a tall man who has been known for his love of sports. He is one of the cleanest comedians in the world, and he has been featured on both television and in movies. He played college basketball before he became a comedian and actor, and the hard work he learned on the court helped him to become the best man he could be. He has been an example for many boys, and he has been a model on the television where his roles are about the purity of hard work.

#5: Tom Selleck

It is no surprise Tom Selleck played college basketball, and he did so at a high level because he is tall enough to compete. He is now an iconic actor with many credits to his name, and he is still a major star in Hollywood as he moves from one fine role to another. His stint as a college basketball player has shown that he is more than capable of tackling adverse situations.

#6: Bob Barker

Bob Barker may be a surprising choice for the list, but it is quite a tall man who has towered over guests on The Price Is Right for many years. He was a standout at Drury University back in 1941-43 as a freshman and sophomore.  He left his scholarship on the table after the first two years to go fight for his country in World War II.

Some fine actors and celebrities were basketball players back in their youth, and this article shows that all the people on this list have been athletes in the past. They learned something about never giving up from the people on their basketball teams, and they are giving that energy back to the public. It may have been fun to watch them play basketball, and it is more fun to see them in their roles today.

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College Football Teams with the Most Diehard Fans

Posted By Andre Abrede

It has been almost a month since the 2016-17 College Football season was finished and the National Championship won by Clemson Tigers. Since the teams’ performances, individual performances, and records we see broken are hashed out quite frequently by the media, I thought I would mix things up and discuss the performance of the fans. Every team is keen to get support from the fans. Be it soccer, football, basketball, or baseball; the fans play an important role in deciding who wins and who loses. The supporting fans can give a boost to the players.

College football is no different, and its fans are very enthusiastic in supporting their teams. I am comparing the fans of different schools to find who gives their team the best chance to win. I took the average attendees, the number of social media fans and official page visitors data to compare and decide who is the most diehard in the sport. The stadiums are of different capacity, and the number of attendees alone can’t be taken as the prime factor in deciding the best fans.

1. Michigan Wolverines

The team has the largest football stadium in the country. Michigan Stadium reportedly has a 107,601 person seating capacity. The official headcount shows that team received 110,168 average attendance in the 2015 season. Its Facebook page received the support of 1,537,037 followers; the Twitter counts to 633K, Instagram account got 62.4K followers.

Though the team hasn’t won any National Championship titles recently, the fans are not upset with the fact. They lend the support to the team every season.

2. Ohio State Buckeyes

The Buckeyes are known to have had great fan support in recent years. The home games in 2015 received an average attendance of 107,244 per game. The official seating capacity of the Ohio Stadium stands at 104,944, so it is clear that fans were rushing to the stadium to see their team play. The official Facebook page has 700,407 followers, Twitter has 109K, and Instagram account received 445K followers.
Whenever I go and enjoy a game in the stadium, I find myself surrounded by a sea of scarlet. The vibrant mood inside the stadium often reminds me to enjoy more matches with the fans.

3. Alabama Crimson Tide

One of the best fan bases in college football belong to the Crimson Tide.  Considering the number of attendees or social media followers, the fans ensure that the team gets excellent support. With an average attendance of 101,112 in 2015 at Bryant-Denny Stadium, the crowd noise and support has found to be a real factor in the team’s performance. The Facebook account of the team has 211,938 followers and its Twitter page accounts to 15.8K followers, while Instagram account has 365K followers.

The fact of winning four national championships out of the last seven also played a major role in integrating its fan base. If you haven’t watched a game in the Bryant-Denny Stadium you will feel the energy and enthusiasm of the fans.

4. Texas A&M
The team had an average attendance of 103,622 while the capacity of the Kyle Field stadium is only 102,733.  The fact that so many go in to stand to watch proof enough of this team’s fan base. The fans in social media ensure that the team is getting enough support on the platforms. The Facebook account has 105,377 followers, the official Twitter page comes with 193K supporters, and the Instagram has 82.1K fans.

I see the fans of this team as one of the most coordinated groups in college football. The team considers its fans as the 12th member of the team.

5. Tennessee Volunteers
Though the Volunteers couldn’t perform at the highest level in recent years, their fans seem to be the most consistent. The average attendance in the home stadium has been going up year after year. In 2015, the team saw an average attendance of 100,584 in Neyland Stadium, when the place has a capacity of 102,455. With 567,282 Facebook followers, 447K Twitter followers, and 197K Instagram fans, the team stands near the top in terms of number of fans.

The season 2016 was also disappointing for the team. I recollect that the team has got AP Poll No. 9 in the preseason, but it went back to 22 in the final ranking. The case is almost replicated in Coaches’ Poll as well. The team has to make serious efforts in the coming years to show their gratitude to the fans.

The popularity of the teams is not always measured according to performance on the ground. But, it is the duty of the teams to give justification to the fan support. Long years of inconsistent performance by teams may bring down the spirit of the fans. So, the teams, be careful.

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  • about 1 year ago


New NBA Season Brings More Betting Opportunities

Posted By Andre Abrede

The new NBA season is finally here. Fans have been waiting for the start of this season as every team has aspirations of making the playoffs and competing for a title.  Last year’s woes have been forgiven and forgotten.

The Las Vegas Westgate super book has produced a list of all teams and the favorites of winning the NBA Finals in 2016-17. For gamblers who will like to make big wins, predictions are already out on what the most likely outcomes will be.

Make sure before you place any of your bets that you do a lot of reading to make sure you know all the angles.  Don’t leave any stone unturned if you want to win a few games this season.  And that is especially the case with win totals.  If you are not familiar with how the win totals work, there is information to guide you as you start the new challenge. Unlike the other types of bets, the win total is paid at the end of the season. So get ready to cheer for your team and win yourself some good amount throughout the coming season.

What you must keep in mind is the odds are going to change throughout the year.  The initial odds were calculated during the offseason, and many things can and do take place during the season. Right now the rosters are known because all free agents are signed and draft picks have been made, but there will be plenty of injuries and trades to track during the year.

Some teams are just too good not to be worth a look. A team like the Golden State Warriors or the Cleveland Cavaliers will likely be the one that holds up the trophy at the end of the season.  They are both coming off a very successful season, and made moves to improve their chances of getting back on top.  They have no major injury threats, and the squad is ready to shine once again on the big stage.

The odds will change on a daily basis as teams win and lose, roster moves occur, and betting action flows from one squad to another.  You might be able to get the best odds now, or if you think your team has a tough early schedule you might want to wait and jump in once you get a better number.

You can’t do that with win total bets though.  Once the season begins everyone takes those off the board.  It’s very to bet this kind of wager.  All you are doing is predicting if the team is going to go over or under the number of wins the sportsbook has posted.

Last year’s results are a big factor.  I think the books don’t always adjust enough to changes the teams have made to improve.  They also underestimate how much the loss of a player can effect the number of victories the franchise pulls down.

Of course, you could just make some money by betting on the spreads posted each night.  You get the benefit of knowing who is playing, who is resting, how the teams have been performing lately, and any situations that are beneficial to one over the other.

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  • about 1 year ago

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