SI Vault
 
Opening Tips
Alexander Wolff
November 19, 1986
Players to watch, dates to mark and a look at the so-called "classics"
Decrease font Decrease font
Enlarge font Enlarge font
November 19, 1986

Opening Tips

Players to watch, dates to mark and a look at the so-called "classics"

View CoverRead All Articles View This Issue
1 2 3 4 5 6

•More cheating. A freshman who doesn't meet the standards can't play but may enroll at a school and retain four years of eligibility if he pays his own way that first year. This invites an unscrupulous booster to "lock him up" by paying his freshman tuition. In addition the temptation to commit outright fraud—using so-called pinch hitters to take SATs for deficient prospects and falsifying high school transcripts—will persist.

•More players staying in-state. With that first-year pay-your-own-way proviso, a school offering reasonable tuition looks more attractive. Herb Barthol of Parma, Ohio, chose Pitt, didn't test out and then enrolled at Ohio State.

•The end of varsity eligibility for freshmen. It may take several years for the 1972 freshmen-eligible rule to be rescinded, but if the university presidents intend to pay anything but lip service to the academic ideal, 18-year-olds must be given a chance to adjust to college life.

The Alaska Poopline

To those of us in the Lower 48, the Great Alaska Shootout each November tips us off that the college season has tipped off. But hoops on the tundra really begins two weeks earlier, when Alaska-Anchorage, Alaska-Fairbanks, Alaska-Juneau and Alaska Pacific compete for the Governor's Cup. "Dog mushing is the state sport," reports Frank Gerjevic, SI's Chugiak correspondent, "but basketball is probably the most popular winter sport." Some highlights:

Alaska-Anchorage, which schussed through the Great Northwest Conference last season with an 8-0 record, returns 10 players. An excellent Division II club, UAA should do well in the Shootout (which it hosts), even though the Seawolves will have to get past Iowa and then two more survivors from among N.C. State, Louisville, Northeastern, Texas, Washington and Utah State.

Alaska-Fairbanks finished at the nether end of the Great Northwest, a sorry 0-8. But the Nanooks take pride in their stiff academic standards: The school passed on a couple of academically marginal players who are now UAA mainstays. Alaska Pacific takes up the sport for the first time this season, its team appropriately named the Pioneers. They expect big things from a juco transfer named Paul (Bear) Bryant.

"We'll be quite a bit better than last year," says coach Pete Toews of Sheldon Jackson College in Sitka. That shouldn't be hard; the Seals' lone victory during a 1-19 season came as the result of a forfeit. Although the Alaska-Juneau Humpback Whales don't have a single starter over 6'3", they should stand up straight and show some spine for coach Clair Markey. A former bricklayer, Markey would seem ill-equipped to dispense shooting tips, but he was once coach of the now-defunct Anchorage Northern Knights of the CBA.

Among the women, watch for UAA, conference champs, and Alaska Pacific, where they're building around frosh prospects Darlene (Pooky) Knowles of Kodiak High and Vicki Slay of North Pole High. Yes, North Pole High.

Walk A Mile In Their Cons

Continue Story
1 2 3 4 5 6