Now we are entering one of my favorite times of the sports year! When multiple sports schedules collide for my daily viewing pleasure and hourly updates on baseball trade rumors. It can be a bit overwhelming but i love it. I just wanted to make some predictions and analyze a few things going on in different sports. First lets start with the sports that are currently going on.
College Football - With an utterly boring NFL season going on i turned to the the NCAA for my football entertainment. Little did i expect that my Michigan State Spartans would have been a championship contender a few short weeks ago, and although that slipped away a Rose Bowl appearance is a very realistic posibility. Im not sure they will win because they really havnt played an elite program this year. But it will be their first Rose Bowl bid since the 80's so im pretty psyched. Hopefully we'll get to see an Oregon v.s TCU championship as well. I am really rooting for these non-BCS schools to get in (although isnt everybody). I dont want to go down the road about why NCAA football needs a playoff system but they do. Im just glad to see Michigan State becoming an elite football program at the same time their Basketball team is, which brings me to my next topic.
College Basketball - We are only what, a week away? I can not wait, yet another sport where my teams are doing well. It's nice to have some success after watching such a dismall MLB season(Cubs) and NFL season(Cowboys). I was a bit worried earlier in the year with the talk of Tom Izzo leaving for the Cavaliers. But luckly Lebron took his talents to south beach and Izzo kept his in East Lansing. Which was probably the smart move, i really feel that the college game can bring a coach more prestige and recognition than the NBA. But the biggest thing is that Izzo has a pretty sweet deal, everybody loves him, he has excellent job security and he has built a great program that should last for a while. I am very excitited to see this years team play because i think it could be the best one yet. They have a bevy of scorers starting with last years tournament star Durrell Summers, the dude is a freak athlete who can do some crazy dunks but is also a pretty good shooter. If he can stay consistently good (which is what he struggled with last year) he can carry this team. Kalin Lucas is back from a ruptured achilles tendon and when he is healthy he is a dynamic player maker who can score in a matter of seconds. The frontcourt is led by fowards Draymond Green and Delvon Roe, Green being the team leader and Roe being the freak athlete who needs to breakout this year. Derrick Nix looks to be the starting center although freshamn Adriene Payne may take over, he has a ton of potetial and is already looking to be a dominant defensive presense in the paint. But this team is also very deep with junior Guard Korie Lucious and Freshman guard Keith Appling looking to steal time from Kalin Lucas and see who will take over next year. This will be another great rebounding and pace controlling team but they also have a lot more firepower than ever before and 3 five star recruits which is probably the most talented roster Izzo has ever had. All of this will probably lead to a third straight final four appearance and possibly a championship.
NBA- Now i am not a huge NBA fan but have followed the Bulls my whole life because being from Chicago and living through the Michael Jordan era how can you not. But over the past few years i have slowly gotten more and more into the NBA and now have become a daily watcher. I find it a little to flashy for my taste (I love Big 10 Basketball Tom Izzo style) but it is a lot of fun to watch. And i am glad that finally the Bulls are starting to make some smart personell decisions. I hated the trades and signings of players such as Ben Wallace, Drew Gooden and Larry Hughes. They didnt make a lot of sense to me but watching them build this years roster i have been very impressed. Obviously it is centered around Derrick Rose, but they have put together some very nice pieces. They have the low post options in Carlos Boozer and the emerging Taj Gibson. The rebounder and defensive presense in Joakim Noah, the shooter in Kyle Korver. A defensive guard in Ronnie Brewer, a scoring PG in CJ Watson. These are just a few of the pieces that the Bulls have put on this roster. I am in no way saying this is a championship team but i think it is a contender. They have a bevy of players with very diferent skill sets, which is the difference between them and the Heat. The Heat have 2 players who have a similar game in Lebron Jame and Dwyane Wade, a low post scorer in Chris Bosh and a bunch of washed up veterans (excluding Mario Chalmers). Im not saying the Heat wont be the number one team come playoff time but i feel that the Bulls could make a push in the playoffs if they get the chance.
NHL- By now if you have read everything ive written you can guess im a Chicago sports fan, so i bet you can guess what my hockey team is. Yep you guessed it the Blackhawks. And no i am not a bandwagon fan i have been a fan for a very long time. My excitment for them has grown over the past few years but i have always like them. Now i have been somewhat dissapointed in them thus far this year. They have shown thier talent but it has been eratic, and i dont like Corey Crawford they need to start Marty Turco as much as possible at goalie. They have shown they have the offensive firepower to compete every night its the goaltending that has been the problem. Kane and Towes are starting to heat up and Sharp has been dominant. Marian Hossa had been on fire before getting injured. This is a good team but they need to be more consistent if they want to repeat.
MLB- Im just about done i just wanted to mention that this is probably my favorite part of baseball when teams start building for next year. I love hearing people debate what players their team is going to sign or trade for. Obviously the Yankees are going to get Cliff Lee since any good player has to play for them because its the Yankees divine right to all talented players right? I hate the Yankees attitude that they are entitled to the leagues best players just because they can buy anybody out. But it really is an exciting time for baseball as we see our teams start to take shape for the next year. I hope the Cubs do NOT sign Adam Dunn. I lived and still live in Cincinnati and i saw Adam Dunn play here for a while and i do not want him to be striking out 200 times in a Cubs uniform. They need to get a stop gap player and attempt to get Adrain Gonzalez anyway they can. I would recommend Adam LaRoche on one of his perenial one year deals. Then if they can attempt to aquire Adrian at the deadline and swing a deal to get rid of LaRoche. It is definitly better than 4 years of Adam Dunn. Now i am very noticebly excluding the NFL from this discussion because i do not want to discuss the Cowboys i am embarrased.