Sunday, August 22, 2010

AAU vs. High School Hoops: Can't We All Just Get Along?

Tensions are high right now among the high school and AAU basketball coaches in NH. Over the last few months I have spoken with a number of coaches on both sides of this fence. There are two high school coaches and one AAU coach in particular who I've had recent conversations with. These discussions are what inspired me to write this article.

This whole thing has gotten personal. Grudges are being held. What's unfortunate is that all the kids want to do is play basketball. Yet they have their high school coach in their ear telling them one thing, and their AAU coach is in their ear telling them something completely different. So no matter what they do one of their coaches is going to be disappointed.

And for some of these players there's quite a bit at stake (for example the chance to play basketball in college or better yet earn a basketball scholarship). For these players in particular the choices they make as far as when to play for their AAU team vs. when to play for their high school team could prove to be VERY important.

Let the Debate Begin
"I keep hearing about how great those kids do in AAU, how many points they score in AAU" remarked Portsmouth High boys coach Jim Mulvey after a game this past season. "But they don't play any defense in AAU. This is high school basketball. We play defense here. The kid that scores all of those points in AAU didn't do anything tonight against us" Mulvey went on.

Now that sounds a little harsh. But this wasn't the first time I've heard someone make the argument about a lack of defensive focus by AAU clubs. What I hear a lot of is that AAU is all 1-on-1, no defense, no fundamentals. Just a bunch of all-star teams for ego-driven players and coaches who trick the players into thinking that it's worth it to spend thousands of dollars for the chance at getting a scholarship when in reality it won't happen is what people tell me.

Two sides to every story though...

Of course the argument for AAU is exposure. "There's so many good players out there and so few scholarships to go around" explained one local AAU coach. "That you have to go the extra mile in order to get noticed. College coaches aren't going to drive all the way out to the middle of nowhere in NH to see some kid play in a high school game. He'll go to a high level AAU tournament, where in just one game he can see 5-10, maybe more scholarship players play instead of seeing just one at a NH high school game."

But on the other side of the coin...

"Let me tell you something about exposure" one Division I (Class L) coach explained to me recently. "I've been out there on the AAU circuit, I know what goes on" the coach (who will remain nameless) went on. Out there at those big AAU tournaments, the college coaches out there aren't evaluating players. You never seem them actually taking notes during the games. The only reason they're there is to be seen. So guys like Will Barton and Andre Drummond see them sitting there at all of their games. These NH kids aren't getting anything from that. The AAU coaches promise them the world, that they'll get a scholarship. But it never happens."

Back to the other side of the coin...

"To get better, you play against better competition" the AAU coach continued. "My team recently played against a team with 7 scholarship players on it, including 3 D-I players. THAT'S how you get better. High school basketball, especially in NH, is a waste of time. You have kids that only play because their friends on the team, or because their parents made them, etc. Plus the talent is so spread out across the state that you could go all winter and not play against one other scholarship player" the AAU coach went on. "I saw one NH high school game last winter where the level of play was so bad, the pace of the game was so slow I just got up and left halfway through. If there were any college coaches in the gym I'm sure they did the same. The kids that play for me get bored during their high school season, they can't wait till AAU starts up again so they can play against some real competition."

The other side of the coin one more time...

The Division I (Class L) coach I spoke with even went so far as saying that there is one AAU program in particular that he will now forbid his players from playing for (sorry, I won't say who the program is to protect them).

"I'm trying to schedule practices and games for the summer" the coach explained. "But I've got some players that are out there playing AAU ball instead. I've had enough of it. "We went to a tournament this summer where some of my players weren't there because of AAU" he went on. "But there was a team there with a kid who played AAU for BABC. He was playing in this high school tournament, so why couldn't my kids? BABC lets their kids play for the high school teams during the summer, the other programs should do the same."

Tensions were again high at a recent girls high school tournament over at SNHU. The tournament had about 12 teams. All were local girls high school varsity squads getting ready for the season. Except one of the teams was an AAU team. The AAU team had 5 prep school players, and won their games in landslides. The coach for one of the high school teams in the tournament was furious that the AAU team was there. As if it wasn't hot enough in that gym already, the tension which was building by the second made it feel even hotter. After much complaining by the high school coaches, the AAU coach removed his team from the tournament.

But Wait, There's More!
It's not even just a battle of HS vs. AAU. You also have different AAU programs around the state bad mouthing each other, fighting each other for players, talking trash, etc. I can't count the number of comments on this site alone that I've had to delete from people trying to attack various AAU programs. It's sickening.

What I Propose is This
C'mon, folks. Let's be adults here. Honestly. Whether you're a high school coach, an AAU coach, a player, a parent, a fan or whoever. We all want the same thing...or at least we SHOULD all want the same thing - to raise the level of basketball in NH. If this happens, more NH kids will get a chance to play college ball, our state would gain credibility within the basketball community, and granite staters of all ages would enjoy playing the game more. These are things that we SHOULD all want.

So if we all have the same goal and want the same things, why then is there this constant struggle between high school and AAU? (And AAU vs. AAU for that matter) Why can't the coaches just get together and come to sort sort of understanding? Why can't the two entities (AAU and HS) coexist? Let's get on the game page, forget about all of the petty stuff and figure this out!

Maybe you set aside certain days or weeks during the summer when AAU clubs can't have practice or games. And this is when the high school teams schedule their practices / games. Whatever it is, something should be done soon before even more bad blood is formed and even more innocent kids get caught in the middle of it. Something's gotta give here, folks. There has to be a way to solve this problem where EVERYONE wins.

Again I say, can't we all just get along?

Let Me Also Add (edit: 8/23/10 at 2:30 PM)
I just spoke with Coach Mulvey. He has nothing against AAU. He used to coach AAU, his son played AAU. He told me that his comments to me were more a complaint about my rankings and how I had players who performed well in AAU games ranked higher than players who performed well in high school games. This was a simple misunderstanding between the two of us which has now been resolved. He also added that he would have no problem with any of his players playing for the Jayhawks or Mark Dunham.

185 comments:

  1. My son will play for mark of the jayhawks over any other coach in high school basketball. Let me make my self clear. My son will be playing for mark whether his coach likes it or not. (i know he doesn't like it)Your comparing summer league high school basketball to prime aau summer basketball. c'momn.

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  2. What if this coach were to become a (gasp!) high school coach? Would your son transfer?

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  3. The real issue with the two programs is this. Now that there is no live period in April and sooo much focus is on national tournaments and showcase camps in July. This just happens to be right in the middle of the time in which the NHIAA allows the high school coaches to be involved with the players. If the national tourneys were in late June and the AAU season ended 4 weeks earlier the seasons would not overlap as much. That would help the high school coaches get more time with their players over the summer.
    As for not playing defense in AAU. Coach Mulvey needs to take a trip to Florida in July.
    If these high school coaches were as serious as coaches in other states were about helping players get into college the kids in these programs could not feel they have to play AAU all the way into July. AAU use to be from Aplril 1st to Middle of June.
    It isn't all about scholarships either. Sure every kid on a varsity team would love to get one but most of the players are D3 kids in this area and they are just looking for exposure and a chance to in college. During the AAU season my son was asked to decide where he wanted to be. At his AAU teams college showcase playing in front of 25-30 college coaches or at a BST game with 9 kids playing Wilton in front of no one. If your a high school coach and you expect a kid looking to play at the next level to come to BST over a chance to play in front of college coaches I have a bridge for you.

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  4. No, he would have to be a prep school coach.

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  5. AAU coaches don't try to schedule practices and games durning the high school season, so why are high school coaches getting mad if players choose aau over high school summer league. Im sure mulvey and the "other coach who wasnt named" would be pissed if aau coaches had games and practices during the winter.

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  6. Every two to three days my son gets a letter from a college coach because of what he does with AAU. End of story.

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  7. 10:11 Post illustrates Jeremy's point in the article.
    He never compared High School summer ball too AAU ball in terms of one being better than the other for a player. He seemed to present a fair, two-sided argument that both are important to a player's overall skill and development, and no matter what a parent, player, or coach chooses to do, a lot of times they could do it with more class.
    AAU coaches (some) think they are better coaches, know more and are therefore superior to other coaches in the area. HS coaches think AAU coaches take players away from their team, fill them with empty promises and inflate their ego's to a point it becomes detrimental to the team. Are AAU coaches usually better "basketball minds"? Yes. But if they really wanted all of their players to get a scholarship, they would try to get the HS programs in the area to be better.
    Jeremy's point was that if NH wants to improve the overall level of basketball, AAU and HS teams need to be on the same page when it comes to player development. AAU and HS coaches should reach out to one another and learn from each other. AAU teams should become more friendly with one another, no more "Coach X knows nothing, come play for me".

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  8. Mulvey talking about a player like that is sad. Here it is a kid trying to make himself a better player and he loses and the coach uses him as an example of AAU being a failure. Nice job coach. Almost as classy as the words you talked about Oyster River.

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  9. Do they have the same issues in soccer and Hockey? Many of the hockey and soccer players play for both travel or select teams. Is that ever an issue? Answer to that is no because the recruiting time frames do not overlap as AAU and Summer ball does.

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  10. 11:39, notice I didn't say which player Mulvey was talking about to protect the kid...

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  11. Why do you think the Prep school coaches do not complain? Why will the AAU coaches work with a kid in prep school but not a kid in high school?
    Maybe the kids know the prep schools are working harder for them to get them to the next level? Maybe they know the prep school coach has not only the teams best interest but the players best interest in mind.

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  12. My son would transfer out of his school to play for mark any where

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  13. To answer the comment made by the coach that the BABC player played but the AAU kids from Nh wouldnt? Easy, the BABC player probably already has a scholarship in hand and his parents do not travel with him and pay his way while he is in Florida. As a parent of one of the kids on the AAU circuit I say this. The culmination of the AAU season is in July with 10 or so guys all depending on each other to be healthy so they can be competitive at the bigger tourneys. By the time these tourneys are upon you, the airfare has been booked,hotel or house paid for and vacation time reserved. All of that takes money. As a parent that has all that money invested in a vacation or a process for recruitment for my child who are you to tell me I am wrong. It is illegal for a coach to punish or make anything over the summer mandatory. The kids cannot be punished for not being there in the summer and if you as a coach do so you are being unprofessional and using your authority incorrectly. You are my sons coach from 10/15 to the end of March. Period!

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  14. heres the deal. if NH wants to thrive as a basketball community then a lot has to change. first off, if you are over 6 foot 3 in NH this is a power forward for most teams unless you have a kid who actually plays year round. in other states 6 foot 3 is point guard. second of all, the kids need to learn HOW to play. plays only go so far, they are good for single possesions. but not the whole game. motion offense separates the basketball players from the robots. and lastly, the kids need to be more fundamental. end of story

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  15. The fundamental problem here is that the summer seasons overlap. Fix that and you will remove the primary source of tension between the two programs.

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  16. Then you shouldn't have let him play against trinity in the semi finals of the bst.Period!

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  17. "Every two to three days my son gets a letter from a college coach because of what he does with AAU. End of story."

    THere's one problem with AAU parents think a letter is recruiting, many kids are being mislead in AAU. Not one kid on the Jayhawks, NOT ONE is getting a scholarship. AAU has it's place, but it has it's problems as well.

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  18. As far as coach Mulvey's statement i seem to recall a time in March where two teams played at UNH one team had a senior laden team that had no aau players on it and one had a junior laden team that had several aau players on it. Now if i recall Mr Mulvey you would have nothing to say after that game about a bunch of juniors who yes do play aau ball and yes do get by far a better playing experience by playing against kids that are going d1 and yes they do play not only a higher intensity of offense/defense then you get in NH and if you expect anyone in thier right mind to believe that playing against kids that are d1 prospects to be a lesser challenge on the defensive side of the ball well then i guess i would love to actually know what aau games you have seen. The fact of the matter seems to be the insecurities of these High School coaches and that they don't really care about the kids enough to let them go out and get better by playing the highest competiion out there but instead they want full control over the kids that to me is selfish. However not all coaches are like that and the ones that are willing to give their blessings to the kids that spend all their time during the off season to get better by doing other things are truly the ones that understand coaching and kids. Now do college coaches go there to watch kids play? Yes they do they are called assistant coaches you will see them at every tournament talking with coaches writing down on the packets that are given out to them with all of the teams and all the names of the kids that are playing. Now if you don't believe me go sometime to a tournament and stand behind one of these coaches and you will see they have tons of notes on players watch as these same coaches all run up to the scoring table to see you scored what ect.And head coaches go but mostly to see a kid they have a huge interest in. And last but not least i have a close friend that is an assistant coach at a d2 school and i asked him that very question and he looked at me as if i was kidding and said how do you think think we build are teams? So again if your high school coach has a problem with aau i would hand him a mirror and ask him to look at himself and ask are you in for the kids or yourself. Is it by the way a fluke that if you look at the class of 2011 out of the top twenty five kids only three of them don't play aau ball and those three are not even in the top ten? In fact just take a look at 2012 and 2103 and tell me the top kids are not playing aau? Is this just a fluke or does aau give them an edge? Tell you what i think coach Mulvey should take a look at the list for himself and tell us all which ones out of the top players on 2011,2012 and 2013 are wasting their time and why because i enjoy a good laugh.

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  19. people,look at the thread below.now that is a real problem.before you rant and rave over something so trivial why don't you make a donation to the supercoop fund.Think about if it was your boy,how would you feel?AAU debate just doesn't seem that important.Be happy that your child is healthy enough to play ball.

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  20. Wow, that HS coach that you quoted Jeremy must have a lot of juice if he can tell his kids that they aren't going to play AAU ball. I think that the best thing a HS coach can do with a player that plays top level AAU ball is to make the case that it might be a good thing to come to as many of the HS summer games and tournaments as you can, and this is important for team continuity/team building reasons. But telling a kid he can't play AAU?

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  21. How do these coaches feel about the Football players not being able to play during the Fall? I mean BG does not allow it's football guys to play Rivier league or do open gyms. Why is that so different than an AAU coach or even a parent not wanting to risk injury during the AAU season? In my mind there is no difference. In fact you can make the argument that AAU should be more accepted since the kids are at least working on the same sport.

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  22. Coach Mulvey must be a blogger. I mean he talks about hearing about AAU players but it has to be he is reading about them. None of the current crop of high school coaches are active on the AAU circuit so none of them would know what players are scoring in AAU tourneys, that means he is reading it.

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  23. TO 1:41

    The BABC player was a sophmore going to be junior no scholarship in hand just a mutual respect for coaches

    You wear your anger on your sleeve

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  24. The coach didn't say his kids can't play AAU, he just told me that he wouldn't let them play for one program in particular. He'll let them play for any other program, just not this one (which like I said that program will remain nameless).

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  25. summer league is not mandatory and if the aau kids are around for a league game then great - but otherwise - let's be serious NH basketball is not that good. With rare exceptions the coaches are not qualified - sometimes they were just the only one available. They rarely teach skills and fundamentals. The pace of HS ball in NH cannot compare to the next level - This is not a discussion. Do AAU coaches inflate egos and things- sure. Will every kid get a ascholarship? no but in the end that comes down to the work ethic and talent of the kid - and they need a venue to be exposed. The NHiaa is not it. As far as defense - well again - that happens in both aau and nhiaa ball- then again sometimes in nhiaa ball its all about peace and love and fairness of playtime..and let's just have fun. This is all god but it won't get you a step closer to the illusive ability to play in college. The competition is fierce for that and will only get moreso- perhaps if teh Nhiaa coaches took that more seriously and offered that one or two players on their team the respect for their individual drive and skill then perhaps the Nhiaa would have the natural draw to have these aau kids give their high schoool their best as often as they could-instead of losing them. Too many times in the NHIAA its the coaches ego(to win a summer league etc) that gets in the way. PLease keep you day job and leave the aau kids alone. Do you punish the kids who go in vacation with mom and dad in the summer? what about those that travel for science or college camps???

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  26. Here's a thought for you why not take your high school team and make an aau team out of them and let them play against some of the best of the best? Then again if your coach Mulvey you would kill everyone out there because according to him no one plays defense and so aau is a waste of time. Can you imagine if he did play lets say CBC hmmmmmmm i wonder what would happen? I mean surely he would stop everyone on that team with his non aau defense and score at will because nobody in aau plays defense right? No the reality is he would lose 250 to 5 if CBC didn't walk off the court in the first two minutes of the game. But i sure would love to hear coach Mulveys excuse why he couldn't stop a non defensive aau team with his superior defensive team.

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  27. Coach Mulvey showed his colors in this didn't he. Sad I respect what he does as a coach but this is not his best day.

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  28. yes coach Mulvey is a great coach defensively. That is the easiest part of the game to teach. He should spend more time teaching his players how to pivot away from pressure and how to create space on their jump shots.
    Maybe then when a kid gets in foul trouble or injured he will have a way to finish a game without a turnover.

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  29. It is sad that players are being asked to do anything for their high school while school is not in. It is summer time,vacation time,time for family and kids to get away from the pressures of basketball and education altogether. It is a total shame that they have to feel guilty that they are in Florida or Vegas. I mean after all it is their vacation time isn't it.
    This is a shame, really.

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  30. 6:36 ok so no scholarships are coming in. That is not unusual it is very rare only about 4000 (estimate) scholarships exist in all of college basketball. However many of these kids would not even make a D3 team without the recruiting process that AAU involves. As for the letters, many have been followed up with calls from schools as far south as Tennessee and Virginia and as far west as Illinois. If you think any of those opportunities would have been available without just walking on and hoping you made the team you are crazy. This process helps kids visit schools,meet the coaches and players before choosing where they want to go to school. All this can be invaluable to a student athlete. This on top of the fun vacations,great competition and the ability to keep young men and women active,healthy and out of trouble should be celebrated.

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  31. Your right 5:46 i should not of let him play in the semifinals. I agree with you. To put that only on him would be unfair.

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  32. This BABC kid go to Florida or Vegas? His parents go with him or did he go with his team alone? Does this kid go to prep school? Let's talk about this kid and I will break down for you why it is easier for him to want to be involved with his team in early July than it is many of the players that you are discussing from your team. It is financial,it is about loyalty and it is about priority. I can break down each one for you again if you like.
    I am glad baseball doesn't have a fall league, Soccer a spring season and football a Summer schedule. All these high school coaches are trying to make high school sports a year round event.

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  33. The BABC kid is Jake Layman, 6'8" forward from King Philip High School. He ran with the BABC 16U team this summer, and still managed to play for his high school team at the King of the Mountain tournament up at Plymouth St.

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  34. i think this article is great, but it definately shows the ignorance of the HS coaches in NH. I watched a couple months ago a story in ESPN about the HS bball coaches in Chicago wanting every kid they coach to play AAU and having great relationships with the AAU coaches. You think they do this for no reason? They understand that what they are going to go through in the summer will help them during the season. And then there is NH where kids are "banned" for playing for a certain coach,discouraged and told to play in the local league instead of an AAU tournament. That is self serving and wrong to do to the kid. And at the same time AAU coaches should not be having practices, tournaments or any other activities during the HS season.

    And theres all this talk about AAU being offensive oriented and 1v1 basketball, Which is wrong.What is wrong with a kid learning to play 1v1 basketball anyways? What coach would not want a kid who can make 3's and take someone off the dribble?Basketball broken down to the simplest: A man with a ball and a man guarding him..if you cant score against him, you cant win!! PERIOD! NH coaches would rather walk the ball up court, have a bunch of sets that they get from college coaches or websites,play a 45-40 game, sub 4/5 in a time and play their best players half the game.

    This is why kids decide to leave NH public basketball. They want to be challenged, they want there talents to be shown and they want to play college basketball at any level. This is not happening, so who can blame them for choosing AAU as a means to get better, and to help them achieve their dreams. NH basketball will continue the decline with the advancement of recruiting, prep schools, AAU, and the decline of quality coaches in the state (which Jeremy already covered).

    And one last note: Perry, Keefe and Fitzpatrick have great relationships with AAU coaches and it seems to me they are pretty successful!!

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  35. Comparing a BABC player to the players if NH AAU is unfair. The kid does not have an offer yet but he is much closer to doing so by just being on BABC. You can bet that he would choose AAU over his high school team in a second. He also had less to lose if he got injured with this year being only his sophomore season and plans to reclassify giving him a much longer road to pave his recruitment. A senior to be player on a team that is only 8 deep owes it to his current team to do everything he can to be healthy in July. It really is that simple. He owes his high school team the same thing in December through March. My son use to play indoor soccer all year long. Now when basketball season hits he does not play indoor soccer. He does so because he would not want to go back to his basketball team and say I am hurt.

    Be loyal to the team that you play for now an that is the most dependent on your performance now. I think that is what the local AAU guys are doing and I respect it.

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  36. what about the ignorance of the AAU coaches? for thinking that that their brand of basketball is so much better than high school. and 1 v 1 isn't real basketball. what about pick and rolls, give and goes, moving without the ball, a well executed 3 on 2 break. when teams pass the ball effectively in order to get quality looks at the basket that's real basketball, not of just jacking up the first 3 pointer they see or going on 1 on 1.

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  37. great post 11:09, nail on the head. The best players in the nation play AAU. You don't believe me during the national championship game in the NCAA tourney the announcers were amazed that a player from Butler skipped AAU as a sophomore to play tennis. Somehow that season of tennis coincided with a 6 inch growth spurt and sent him back to hoop as a junior. Fact is the best play year round these days. high school teams are now taking a back seat to AAU because of the higher level of play,the live period and the recruiting with all that goes with it. A bigger challenge, more exposure and a chance to travel. It is only going to get worse for the high school coach unless he learns to adapt and be more accepting of the process.

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  38. get off it 11:15 the best AAU teams execute. All Ohio Red and BABC was one of the best games I have seen played at any level this year. BABC lived with the pick and roll and All Ohio Red tried it's best to run and execute the 3 on 2. Unfortunately one of the 2 was Nerlens Noel and he erased the thought of the advantage very quickly.
    Our team runs off picks,screens and double screens. The players know how to curl when chased and pop when the defender goes under. Do not try to make high school ball sounds so scientific. Those are all basic concepts that should be taught in middle school.

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  39. BABC doesn't practice, kid had plenty of time on his hands he could play what ever he wanted that weekend. Had the tourneys in NH you mentioned been a week later you can bet he would be with Leo. Trust me on that one. On top of that had he gotten injured and cost his team at the national tournament a chance to win the whole thing he would have never forgiven himself.

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  40. This is all great. I hope Mark Dunham, Vin Pastori, and Scott Hazleton are reading this. Only a matter of time until the Rivals and Jayhawks start holding practices and games during the high school season. Then the high school coaches will be really upset! The High school coaches are walking up a slippery slope right now, better be careful. If this continues all the top players will be leaving for prep schools. High School summer basketball should be for the develpoment of JV Players and what not.

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  41. It isn't about developing players in June and July for these coaches it is a ego trip and a chance to win and hopefully elevate their own status.
    Think about it if it was about development coaches would be thrilled that their juniors were out playing hoop and challenging themselves. This should allow the coaches to teach and educate the younger players and give them a chance to improve. In fact if I was a high school coach I would not even invite my upper classmen and ask just non AAU players to come. Focus on the ones that are not getting the extra time and really be a teacher in the offseason.

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  42. To defend the Jayhawk program in this for a second out of respect for the high school season the tryouts for the Jayhawks are held off til after the playoffs are over. This is to make sure that a player doesn't come out and get injured at a key time for high school ball.
    It is a shame that the high school teams aren't as understanding.

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  43. I am confused by this completely. My son has never been told by Mark Dunham to not play for his high school team. Ever. Am I missing something?

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  44. Mulvey had players this year playing AAU, all the way into July. I wonder how he felt about that?

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  45. 11:40 and 11:41, neither the Jayhawks nor mark Dunham are mentioned at all in this article. No need to defend someone who's not being accused anything. Guilty conscience?

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  46. News Flash to all of you AAU parents/supporters. If you are one of the parents that actually has to pay for your kid to play AAU you are being taken for a ride. If you are one of the parents that is asked to have your kid play for no fee, then he might have a shot.

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  47. Whoever made the comment about some of these kids not getting D1 scholarships is missing the boat. Granted, it is very rare for a NH basketball player to get a D1 scholarship. But that's not always the end game for parents and players who participate in AAU. I know for a fact several Jayhawk players are currently the one of the top 4-5 recruits, nationwide, for such schools as Williams, MIT, Tufts, Middlebury, and WPI. And it is an absolute fact that the reason these players are in that position is those college coaches watched them play on several occassions for the Jayhawks, including at the College Night showcase and down in Florida. So it's not just all about getting a scholarship - AAU exposure has allowed these kids to be seen by some of the top academic institutions in the country, and leverage their basketball talents to get a world class education. Would any of those college coaches attend a BST summer league game? Most likely not. Could one of these college coaches have waited until the winter to go up to NH and watch some of these kids play a high school game as a senior? Sure, but by that time it would probably be too late and they would already have had commitments from the players they were recruiting all summer and fall. Let's face it folks, anyone who knows anything about high school basketball knows that all the recruiting action takes places during the SUMMER, with AAU. Some of these high school coaches should stop being so selfish, and worry less about their summer league won-loss records, and worry more about trying to assist some of their better players in getting into the colleges of their choice.

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  48. Come on guys dont act stupid. Everyone knows that the only AAU players in NH played for who.. Mark Dunham. Guilty conscience? Hardly very proud that my son was able to experience so much over the last two years. He is a better player,better person and a better college recruit because of it.
    Now if you cannot use your 5 practices for three weeks strait and 3 practices a week,2 games a week for 2.5 months to get a team together we know it is not about my kid skipping practice or a tourney in July now don't we. lol

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  49. 11:46 there is certainly enough innuendo to know that the two AAU programs being earmarked in this thread are the Jayhawks and Rivals. So let's fool ourselves about that!

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  50. there are only 2 AAU programs in NH that played into July. Rivals and Jayhawks. I do stand by my comment that coach Dunham has never told me my son could not play anything for his high school team.

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  51. I have a hard time believing that anyone is talking about the rivals everyone knows that this is about Dunham and the jayhawks. The rivals have only two juniors on that team where as the jayhawks have like twenty.

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  52. 12:11, you must not have read my article about how all of the NH AAU programs did at nationals. Teams that went to national tournaments (in July) were:

    Boys
    Bishop Elite
    NH Spartans
    Jayhawks
    Rivals

    Girls
    Granite State Rockettes
    NE Shooting Stars
    NE Crusaders
    NH Rivals

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  53. What have the Raiders been doing? I know Matt Alosa is coaching up at the BST camp and not the Raider program...hmmmm...why would Matt not be coaching with his father but with another program?

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  54. News Flash to all of you AAU parents/supporters. If you are one of the parents that actually has to pay for your kid to play AAU you are being taken for a ride. If you are one of the parents that is asked to have your kid play for no fee, then he might have a shot.

    Monday, August 23, 2010 11:53:00 AM EDT

    Really what do offer during the summer that is free? And will it help my kid get better? And will i be able to play against the best of the best? And will he get the exposure he needs to have to have a chance for playing college ball? And do you currently have a kid ranked in the top ten? Or all these questions to foreign for you to answer?

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  55. Maybe while we have coach Mulvey's attention we should ask him how he felt over the last few years not having the full focus of his high school team because of basketball and how he handled it. My guess is he would never be able to complain about kids not spending time on basketball because 75% of his team were baseball players first. So what would your stand be if a kid missed a July offseason tourney with your high school team to go play baseball?

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  56. Mulvey didn't seem to mind AAU when he coached the Seacoast Stringray AAU team for so many years. Alot of the good players on his past high school team, including his son, Tsourangis, etc., played AAU and Mulvey benefited from that development with a state championship.

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  57. Coach Mulvey
    I was contacted by a friend who said i should look at this site as i was being bashed pretty good.
    I really have no interest in this site or what Jeremy has to say but do feel like i must respond to a couple things
    I did coach the Stingrays AAU program for 7 years and had a great time doing it. I have nothing but respect for anyone coaching AAU and would love for any of my players to play for Coach Dunham or Coach Hazleton. I did not intend to bash any single player that is playing AAU as i wish more of our kids would play more in the offseason.
    I could care less about Player rankings other than the fact that some of our kids do look at them. I was not trying to single out any one player but just using an example that in high school basketball, defensively you can stop other teams best players. I do believe defense is more of a priority at the high school level as we do not have as many gifted offensive players that an AAU team would have.
    Coach Mulvey

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  58. As someone that has played Division 1 Basketball and been involved in basketball at many levels for many years I can honestly say the development process for kids these days are not as good as they were 30 years ago. The proof is also in the product. Look at the NBA. USA barely beats Spain last night. NH High School Teams are not any better now then they were 30 years ago. 30 years ago the development process for a top high school player was based on the following.

    1.Work on your own and play Pick up games vs good competition (When your 16 you play against the college guys etc) No time limits, no refs, no mom and dad, no entry fee and no coach.
    2.Camps ( Top High School players went to the Local camps to learn and play against good Competition and also if you were good enough you would get an invite to 5-Star, I got noticed at Camps)
    3.Work out with your teams
    4. AAU was in its infancy at that time and only the best players played. It was not a money maker at that time it was focused on quality not quantity.

    Now players Development in the offseason is mostly
    1. A long AAU Season- April-July then some will continue Sept through Nov.
    2. Work out with HS program .

    AAU has really effected 2 areas of Development that I think were the 2 most important for me personally. Camps and Quality Free Play. Not as many High School players attend Camps as they used to because they are focused on there AAU Team, so camps have become watered down or just died. I believe European Countries do not have AAU but they have an emphasis on Skill Academies/Basketball Camps. They have improved greatly. AAU is also driven by money. Rich kids get to play, poor kids don’t unless they are great. USA Basketball needs to reform it’s developmental model or we will get past in the next few years.

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  59. I am not going to call any coaches out as Jeremy has done in this article but I think most of us know what kids missed BST games. I am quite certain that this evolves mostly around the Jayhawk program. Because they had a short roster and several of the parents decided to keep their kids out of the King of the Mountain tourney and BST schedule was the same night as our practice schedule. Fairly easy to figure out. It is sad that the kids that have played AAU and are the players that are really working most on their games are made to feel guilty. Sad!

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  60. I think Jeremy was making a point about you putting down a kid that plays aau ball and i personally have no problem with him calling you out on that because if you did do that then i am hearing two different things from you which personally bothers me. As far as defense being a bigger priority at the high school level i think your getting confused with the talent level between NH high school and AAU. If you really think that your kids could stop an elite aau team because you play better defense then sorry you have lost all credibility with me. In fact when you lost to Milford you lost to a team that was younger and just happen to have a lot of AAU players on the team one of them which happens to be ranked the number one defensive player in 2011 and while i was looking i did not see any of your players ranked on the defensive side of things. so while you can say they don't play good defense i would beg to differ. And you didn't mention anything about taking back what you said about the kid playing aau ball which also leaves me wondering?

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  61. The Jayhawks ran Sunday workouts throughout the regular season how is that respectful to high school coaches. Maybe all of this started because of that! I think most of the coaches in NH are glad there kids are playing AAU and dont truly mind that they miss summer games. I think most of the NH coaches do agree however that some of the AAU programs have put themselves on this pedastal instead of working together with the coaches.

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  62. Coach Mulvey do you think AAU teams play D? Clarify that while your here.

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  63. Why does anyone think Jeremy is calling coaches out? They are the ones who have no problem speaking up and telling the world how they feel and i know this because i have heard the same thing out of this other coaches mouth. So i don't think anyone should be pointing at Jeremy because if you have no problem saying out loud to a lot of people then you must deal with it yourself.

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  64. pick up games are no where near as prominent as when I was younger. My son played more structured games that I did in high school before he got to Middle School. I think that is because of the area itself and the lack of actual gyms in the area. Many of the schools are off limits and many of the suburban towns do not have the boys and girls clubs or YMCA's. So kids in the winter time have less chance of playing pick up games than I did. That is one reason I have so much respect for what BG does with the open gyms they have. Kids get a chance to go run and play the game. I wish there were more programs willing to open doors to kids like that.

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  65. the Milford coaches have never given my son any issue over playing AAU. He tells him when he will be able to be there and that is it. Younger guys get minutes, what is the problem?

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  66. When I was a high school assistant coach we encouraged all kids to play AAU over the summer to get better. Maybe the landscape has changed in the last 2 years since I've coached, but we viewed AAU as an opportunity for more court time for the older guys, and an opportunity for the younger kids to step in and play in scrimmages/summer leagues.

    Its the summer - kids are gone for various reasons (or no reason at all) ALL the time...as a HS (or AAU coach for that matter) you just deal with it and move on.

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  67. Jeremy, These posts are a little misleading. Many HS coaches were AAU coaches at one time (maybe most) and some AAU programs are set up by there hs coaches (Dover, Lebanon, Oyster River, Central)
    Most all HS coaches are expert coaches where some AAU guys are and some are just parents (I am sure this is going to get some parents blogging about how stupid their hs coach is)

    AAU is a great assest for NH basketball and most HS coaches agree

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  68. I just spoke with Coach Mulvey. He has nothing against AAU. He used to coach AAU, his son played AAU. He told me that his comments to me were more a complaint about my rankings and how I had players who performed well in AAU games ranked higher than players who performed well in high school games. This was a simple misunderstanding between the two of us which has now been resolved. He also added that he would have no problem with any of his players playing for the Jayhawks or Mark Dunham.

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  69. The Sunday workouts were not practices and were purely optional and actually open to non Jayhawks as well. That was not during the winter that was during the Fall when high school coaches are forbidden to deal with the school players. So that is not where all this started. Nice try.

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  70. Let me repeat Jayhawks did not practice during the school season.

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  71. Basketball programs in NH are primarily education tools to teach kids life skills. In this respect, we all must demonstrate and honor the basic purpose of high school athletics. The goal isn't to have a D-1 products. Basketball is a tool that serves a greater good and must not be confused for an elementary diversion.

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  72. Amen - AAU season is over. Jeremy lets keep this to what 90% of us care about and that is high school ball.

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  73. Well basketball is life to some of us. Not just a winter sport.

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  74. High school hoops doesn't start until December right?

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  75. Amen - AAU season is over. Jeremy lets keep this to what 90% of us care about and that is high school ball.

    Monday, August 23, 2010 4:58:00 PM EDT

    And we can leave the other 10% to a higher level basketball.

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  76. People do not rant about shutting down a player because of where he is ranked if they Dont Care about the site or what Jeremy thinks. It has to be one or the other.

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  77. Just to be clear...like I explained to Coach Mulvey, the reason why I used his name in the article is because he said those things to me after a game when myself and a group of reporters were asking him questions and writing down his answers. In that context anything he says is fair game to be published. The other coaches I talked to about this were in off-the-cuff, more casual situations. I had no notebook or pen. That's why I didn't include their names.

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  78. This is not really AAU vs High School. You see for it to be about high school you would have to be in school and the season is summer,vacation. That isn't school ball that is vacation.

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  79. AAU used be great NH had one or two elite teams years ago. Then people started to make money off of it. Age 10-14 is huge money maker for some of these programs.

    Also some of these kids are pulled at by so many programs now at a young age it is silly.

    What really needs to happen is the HS coaches need to get in better contact with some college programs.

    There are some Class L NH coaches that have zero basketball ties with college programs so these kids need to turn to their AAU coaches to get them a d 2 offer.

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  80. I think AAU might be a little more beneficial if it had America Legion type rules. Each major area have one teams and if you run the organization in that area and you get kids from that area.

    Manchester as 2 teams, Nashua a team, Beford and Ameherst one team, Londonderry and Derry a team.

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  81. Something like that will never happen. States three times the size of ours have open borders. You will never get anything like that to exist.
    Even that would not change the issue of July being the key time in both high school and AAU's season. That is the only issue. Live period and national exposure.

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  82. "There are some Class L NH coaches that have zero basketball ties with college programs so these kids need to turn to their AAU coaches to get them a d 2 offer."

    Again the problem with AAU, it fosters these delusional ideas.

    Dad, if your son plays in Class L and is worthy of a Division 2 scholarship people will know who he is. If he doesn't get the scholarship, it's not that his coach has zero contacts (ridiculous)it's that he is not a d2 player.

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  83. Sorry but that's silly there are plenty of good aau teams out there that you can get on some you have elite teams you have good teams and you have teams that are made up from a town. Each team gives a kid a chance to play there is no need to water it down by doing a bedford/amhearst team ect.

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  84. Here is one way to solve the problem. Have an AAU program in each school district. I think whats important is having the kids play basketball. Let the high school coaches set up an AAU program with the players from their own team. I know there are rules against them coaching their own players, so let them find another coach who will do it.
    I always thought the purpose of AAU was for the player to get better and the more players from your own team that you have on an AAU team, the better your High school team will be.
    It's the idea of "all-star" AAU teams thats the problem. If you have an AAU team that is being run by the High school coach, directly or indirectly, it will help the kid and the team.
    Problem solved.
    Most AAU teams (jayhawks and rivals) take the best players from these high school programs. Its difficult for these high school coach's to set up a system in the summer time if their best players are not there, so I see their point. We need more local AAU teams with local high school players on it and those teams must play an extended schdule, go places and be seen. Then you can have the best of both worlds.

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  85. if a player was to tell there coach they wanted to go to prep school NH high school coaches would probebly tell them not just so the kid can help them win a championship and build there resema cuz i know three coaches in NH that did that and didnt wanna help the player get into prep school.

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  86. I think spreading your best players from your high school team onto other teams is the way to go. They get to play with other players and if you have players that play the same position it can lead to a kid not getting a chance at that spot as often as he should. Spread em out,let em play and expose them to different players and different styles as often as possible. It has worked out well for Milford at least.

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  87. 9:04, NH High School basketball coaches have 4 months to get there team to have chemistry and 6 practices a week. Think about the teams that have won championships in the last 4 years.....Salem, Trinity, Milford, all there best players played AAU Ball. Oh and guess what?? Those coaches are very close with the AAU Coaches!!! It's just the small amount of coaches that can't win with the talent they have that are giving the Jayhawks and Rivals a bad rep. The Rivals and Jayhawks give kids in this area the chance to play against the BEST teams/players in the country.

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  88. Good post 10:15, great topic to bring up for discussion Jeremy. My son has worked his butt off playing hoops for years be it pick -up games, school team,AAU,or travel. His hard work and some god given talent has gotten him an offer to play at a prep school.This came about because of the exposure he got thru the Rivals program.Thanks to the coaching from Scott and Vin his game has gone to the next level. Never in a million years would this have been possible by playing school ball only. It has been my experience as a parent that a top level program like the Rivals/Jayhawks are a key to open doors to places otherwise unobtainable.

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  89. Nothing better than as a player and
    (selfish as it may be)parent to play on AAU team with all the best kids you play against during the season. You make good friends that you get to see during the season and play with in the spring. My son played on a state championship team this year and I will tell you his AAU experience since fifth grade was more enjoyable. Better coaching, more exciting games better players, better friends.

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  90. What about class L? Pinkerton and Winnie had very few AAU players and multisport athletes with basketball being there second sport??

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  91. Pinkerton and Winnie would have lost to Milford and their juniors. Key word juniors how will Winnie and Pinkerton be this year?

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  92. I am from Milford and I am not totally convinced that Milford would have beaten Pinkerton. I agree that they may have been to much for Winni but Pinkerton has Zach and I do not know how Milford would have defended him.

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  93. WOW - the 11:57 post is exatly why there is even a debate about AAU v. High School Ball - Parents, Parents, Parents.

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  94. FYI: The Granite State Raiders are still going. They wrap up at the end of September.

    (OK haters, fire away)

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  95. Parents are delusional is the problem

    11:33 Give the Rivals and their coaches credit where they deserve. They made your son better, more specifically your son made himself better. Not exposure that talk is silly.

    I don't know what prep team you are talking about but unless he's playing for free the coach doesn't care how good he is to make the offer for him to play.

    That entire post seems like an advertisement for the Rivals. Hmmmm?

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  96. 1:00 pm, Milford would have been 4th or 5th in class L last year. This year different story.

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  97. I think Milford could have played with anyone in L last year other than Pinkerton. Not to say they would have won but I do not think there was a team they couldn't beat especially when you seen how they actually rose to the occasion in Durham. I was one of the locals that was worried when we didn't make it to Durham for a game the year prior as I thought they would play tight last year. To me the only one that played tight was Mitchell in the first half of the Portsmouth game but then settled down and played very well in the second half. The rest of the starters actually seemed unfazed or even energized by the situation. However I do think there was little pressure on them last year. Think about it if you lose with a almost completely junior class you can sort of lean on the chance of making a run as seniors. But as seniors you are looking at it being your last game and there are more emotions involved. It will be interesting to see how this team reacts this year. This is also a team that is very close and that has been together sooo long that even that may weigh on them in Durham.

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  98. Ok 1:38 I will take your challenge, This is about AAU basketball and your program is more of a basketball school. Find that tab please.

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  99. The Miolfordite who believe that team would have beaten the Pinkerton team if they had played each other after the State title games are living on another planet.

    Anyone with any real sense of the game and not being biased knows full well it would have been a good game, but Pinkerton would have won it.

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  100. Milford's only chance would have been to try to force turnovers and take get all three guards hot from outside. I do not think Milford could have stopped Zach but if all of their guards shot lights out from behind the arc and they got a few turnovers. Who knows. Pinkerton still the favorite but I give Milford a shooters chance.

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  101. IF he is playing for free you son is one of maybe 3 kids in the state. Hardly the reason to abandon the other 99.9% of kids and what is best for them

    Still sounds like an Ad.

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  102. As I said, a good game, but Pinkerton wins it.

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  103. The Miolfordite who believe that team would have beaten the Pinkerton team if they had played each other after the State title games are living on another planet.

    Anyone with any real sense of the game and not being biased knows full well it would have been a good game, but Pinkerton would have won it.

    Tuesday, August 24, 2010 2:17:00 PM EDT

    Actually the biggest problem Milford faced was against taller teams because we were not getting the play out of Nelson and Desmaris for most of the year until the last part of the season and the playoffs. After that Desmaris played better but Nelson was a beast he had to defend 6-5 jake woodward in the first round then go up against 6-7 kevin cressy 6-6 ethan oneil from John Stark and then 6-5 kyle dicesare and Mike Barton from Portsmouth so all in all Nelson stepped up big time and gave us that inside presence we needed and that's why i feel we would beat pinkerton. Would Zack M make that much more of difference then a Woodward,Cressy,Oneil or Dicesare? I would have to say after seeing him play several times no way i think Zack was a great player for that team but he wasn't as fast as a Woodward and was the same height as Cressy and it was harder to keep woodward tied up because of his speed where as Zach M would be much easier to strip off his dribble and would not be blowing by Nelson by any means. Now if you want to compare the rest of Pinkerton's line up against Mifords go for it. I know one thing it would be hard for pinkerton to stop Milford in the open floor and Zach would be of no help in that situation.Let's not forget Pinkerton had four losses last year to Milfords one need i remind you a team of juniors not seniors. Pinkerton lost to BG by 12 and Exeter by 4 and Manchester Memorial in pinkertons home gym and winnie and it's not like class L was a deep class last year. So all in all i think it would be a good game but still feel we would win guess will never know for sure.

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  104. Ok, some of your post is a little off there 4:58. Woodward is 6'4" not 6'5". Milford played Lebanon at the end of the regular season, NOT in the first round. Milford played Merrimack Valley in the first round. DiCesare and Barton are both guards for Portsmouth. They're both 6'2". Cressy, O'Neil and Woodward are MUCH different players than Mathieu. The first 3 guys are more finesse bigs, they can play out on the perimeter, they can shoot from the outside, they're quick off the dribble, etc. Mathieu is a back to the basket big and is a power player. He rarely leaves the paint, and was a dominating force scoring and rebounding the ball within 10 feet of the basket. If you saw Pinkerton play in Durham you would know that Mathieu was on a different level than any other forward at the end of the year.

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  105. Milford is in Class I for a reason. It happens every year the winners from the other divisions think they could compete in class L. No way. But you all can keep thinking that if it makes you and your parents (Isn't it really where it is coming from because they chose to live in these smaller towns) happy. But it just ia=sn;t true. Thats why they have different divisions to let the small schools play each other. Just the way it is.

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  106. I have no doubt that MIlford would have issues guarding Zack. Much more of an issue guarding him than any of the other guys and I will tell you why. Besides the facts Jeremy pointed out with Woodward being 6'4" and the Portsmouth kids being much smaller. Cressey is the only one with anywhere near the height that Zach has. Zack is also a good free throw shooter. Cressey got some good looks against Milford also but Milford fouled him and he missed several free throws. That game could have been more interesting than it was if Cressey hit some foul shots.
    Zack was absolutely the best player come playoff time last year. I think because he does not play hoop year around like some others it takes him more time to get into real basketball shape and in March he was as dominant as Jordan was the year before.
    Milford also would have had to keep the big red head off the glass and for the boys on the Jayhawks they know what a pain that could be.
    However if Milford played well and shot the three ball like they can they could have made it a game. I agree that Pinkerton would win 8 out of 10 but who knows the other two could have happened in Durham.
    As for living in a smaller town and choosing to play in class I. Do not be silly no team in class I does more to expose their players to the best basketball around. Do doubt Milford could play in L and be a final four team not only last year but this year as well. Do not believe me that is fine. Talk to Dave Haley at NHSPORTSPAGE. Jeremy or even Adam at New England Recruiting report. All have said it before that Milford could be the most talented team in the state, class L included.

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  107. How did this post go from a discussion of AAU vs. high school basketball, to a discussion of whether Milford could have beaten Pinkerton? Am I the only one that gets irritated when these Milford parents end up taking over every discussion on this blog to talk about how great they are, whether it is relevant to the blog topic or not? The sorry part is that it's only August, so we have another 8 or so months to listen to the incessant bragging of the Milford folk. You have some good players, but a little humility goes a long way.

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  108. Jeremy, whats the largest number of responses you have gotten for a single topic???

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  109. Lets take a minute to discuss the other site. Mass and NH basketball blog has Ben Hill above John Wickey,Mike O'Loughlin and Jamie Holder in their rankings for 2011. Are you kidding me? The kid is tall and make block a shot for you but with his lack of strength and limited offensive skills he is far from being in the same league as the other guys. Do not give me that crap of you cannot teach size and defense crap. I have never seen him even as much as make a offensive move from anywhere outside of 5 feet. Talk about some home cooking with that ranking.

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  110. Every year there are a handful of teams that have the ability to play up a division. Would a 17-1 type team in class M or I be that good in I or L, probably not, but could they go 13-5, yes. Lets be real, there are some Class I and L teams that if they moved down a division might make the playoffs. The problem is that they would not be able to do that consistently year after year. I haven't watched that much recent NH basketball, but anybody who thinks that teams like Pembroke and MV in the early 90s, Farmington, Fall Mountain, Stark, Inter-Lakes, St. Thomas, Con-Val, Lebanon, Oyster River in the mid to late 90s or Brady in the late 90s couldn't have played up is sadly mistaken!!!!

    I personally, would love to see somebody take the initiative to develop an invitational XMas tourney and invite 8 teams the top Class M team, a few Class I teams and a few Class L. Give them all 3 games via pool play and let the top team from each pool play in the championship. Somebody set this up and settle it once and for all. All this talk about what team can beat what team is funny. On any given day a good team in a lower class can beat a good team in the class above.

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  111. Is everything always about Milford? You will be hearing crickets out of Milford after this year and that's about it.

    9 months and counting

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  112. Would Zack M make that much more of difference then a Woodward,Cressy,Oneil or Dicesare?

    LOL, here is one of those Milfordites I was talking about - living on another planet!

    As Jeremy pointed out your entire arguement was an exaggeration to say the least. Mathieu was not the NH Mr. Basketball by accident. His dominace at the end of the year was the reason he won the award, the reason why Pinkerton won the CLass L title & the reason why Milford would not win.

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  113. Tuesday, August 24, 2010 5:26:00 PM EDT

    OK Jeremy I'M sure you took out the ruler and have Woodward's exact height right? Either way he is only a couple inches shorter then Zach and my point is he is a harder cover because he's much more athletic and faster then Zach M. Zack would be a much easier cover because we have fast the guards that can strip the ball from him as he puts the ball to the floor where as Woodward you have to go out and cover him. As far as playing Lebanon in the first round it was a playoff game as far as intensisty it was the last game of the year and we wanted revenge and they wanted to beat us. And my point was Nelson was playing like a beast at the end of the year into the playoffs like i posted in the previous line. And he made us have the ability to keep the bigs at bay.

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  114. I think a huge problem is that certain AAU coaches talk about exposure!!!, who they know and that the H.S. coaches aren't doing enough or as much as the AAU coach claims they can.
    I have coached class L basketball in NH, AAU, Division 2 & 3 college basketball and am personal friends with the president of the Hoop Group and the directors of 5-Star (working those camps for years). So I think I may have a little insight on this discussion. I have tons of friends who are college coaches at all levels. I report to my friend’s honest nonbiased opinions on what different players can and can't do and what level the kid can play at. I help out with a H.S. team when I can (job issues), but the kids don't know my background & who I know. The thing that really gets me mad is that certain players will believe what their AAU coach is telling them & not pay much attention to their H.S. coach. College coaches see through this and many of the players that in the last few years would have played at the same colleges even if they never played AAU. For example most of the kids end up playing D3 in New England. Has there been ANY PLAYERS (excluding Trinity/Raiders of Alosa, they were special) to go play outside NE? If not then these players are not getting real exposure.
    This group of seniors will play D3 in NE. The ones going to top academic schools will so because they are D3 players with good grades.
    NO SCHOLARSHIPS, SO WAKE UP!!!! Parents your kid may have had a great AAU experience (some kids got WORSE), but that did not earn them a free ride in college. AAU in NH is about making money. Many high school coaches are clueless, but if you are good enough people will notice you.
    From what I have seen over the years is a lack of individual skills. This is what ALL NH PLAYERS MUST GET BETTER AT, not games, but this kind of work is no fun. Instead they play a ton of AAU games and never work on skills.
    I have talked to coaches about kids I don't even know, I'm a good judge of talent & speak the truth with nothing to gain. Sorry if I hurt anyone’s feelings, but it is what it is.

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  115. dominance at the end of the year was the reason he won the award, the reason why Pinkerton won the CLass L title & the reason why Milford would not win.

    Talk about another planet what don't you understand when i said BG beat them by 12 we beat BG with two starters this summer by thirty yes they were missing green but we were missing nelson,mitchell,jovi,desmaris ect. So for you to think we couldn't beat Pinkerton is a joke they had a good run and barely squeaked it out in double overtime against winnie who by the way lost to BG by 14 and got crushed by dover by 15. So i don't really care if you think we couldn't beat them or not because if winnie made a couple of shots they would have been the winner and someone else would have been POY and we wouldn't even be having this discussion.

    Milford is in Class I for a reason. It happens every year the winners from the other divisions think they could compete in class L. No way. But you all can keep thinking that if it makes you and your parents

    If you don't think we can play just name the team you play for and we will be glad to scrimmage you but if you lose won't you be one eating crow.

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  116. I kindly disagree with 4:58 pm, which is a 99.9 % chance of being the loquacious Mr. Mitchell from Milford. Zach M was on higher level of everyone in the playoffs last season. He was in a zone. He would've easily gotten Desmaris and Nelson in foul trouble. Even though Nelson and Desmaris were serviceable players for the Spartans last year, trying to guard Mathieu would've been a tough task for either one of those players. Park would've negated MM Jr.'s quickness and playmaking. True, Pinkerton would've had a tough time defending the duo of Holder and Mitchell, but the same could be said of Milford trying to defend the inside game of Patrikis and the overall game of Proulx. The thing that sticks with me on this Pinkerton - Milford matchup is that Milford lives by the outside shot more than Pinkerton. Milford would have to shoot the ball well against Pinkerton and get some fast break or pressing points. Pinkerton's front line would not let Milford have too many second shots. In a big game like Milford-Pinkerton, I'll take the inside power game the majority of the time.

    In the end Mathieu would be the difference and score 28 to 34 points to lead Pinkerton to the 64 to 56 victory in the fantasy "True NH State Championship Game."

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  117. Either way he is only a couple inches shorter then Zach and my point is he is a harder cover because he's much more athletic and faster then Zach M.

    Well, it is obvious YOU have never defended a big man in the low post. I suppose all those other Class L teams were just throwing 5'10" guards at Mathieu all year. I mean surely that would be a good way to stop him.

    AND

    Zack would be a much easier cover because we have fast the guards that can strip the ball from him as he puts the ball to the floor where as Woodward you have to go out and cover him.

    AND

    And my point was Nelson was playing like a beast at the end of the year into the playoffs like i posted in the previous line. And he made us have the ability to keep the bigs at bay.

    Bis? What Bigs? Who is Class I played anything even remotely like ZM.

    LOL, kid you ever hear of a drop step, power dibble, etc. He is too big for anyone on your team to play behind him and prevent him from getting the ball. Perhaps if you had taken the time to come back to UNH and watch him play, you might have a real grasp for what you would have to deal with versus your fantasy of easy he was to guard.

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  118. Scott King sat at the end of bench wasting away as his head coach did nothing to get him into games or improve his game. He went to the rivals and has sky rocketed he has five division one offers now thanks to getting the chance to play against better players in aau and coaches being able to see him play. If you don't believe me talk to him some time or go and watch him play d1 talk is cheap actions are much more believable. In fact lets talk about the non aau kids and how many d2 or d1 scolarships they have recieved compared to the aau players out there even Andre Drummond plays aau ball let me guess he's not getting anything out of it right and he should be sitting in his highschool gym instead with his highscool coach just dribbling and shooting/

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  119. Here is the funniest part about this Milford bashing. The person saying Milford would have lost to Pinkerton last year was me, Mr Mitchell.

    Zach would have been to much he would have dominated us inside just like he did everyone else. I do say I give us a shot to steal it but Pinkerton would have been the favorite.
    Not sure who the Milford person is that is talking or if it is a person from Milford for that matter but as I said earlier Zach was a different force than any other big man in the state last year.

    MM

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  120. I get the feeling this is someone from BG talking bad about Pinkerton. I am not sure who on Milford would even know that much about the class L season. Milford kids wouldn't know that Pinkerton lost to BG. I smell something fishy and again.
    Person from Milford come out of the dark and state your name.
    Anyone?

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  121. Hey 4:58 your wrong son I was the one saying all along Zach would be the toughest matchup for Milford and only give Milford an outside shot to win the game. Believe it or not there are people on here that are not me.
    I have talked to many people and said it many times since then that Zach was no doubt the POY last year and the one thing Milford lacks is a true big man. Desmarais and Nelson can do some things in help side defense with bothering guards on drives but neither of them had the strength to push Zach off the spot and keep him off the glass.
    So thanks for throwing my name out there but you were way off base.

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  122. So i don't really care if you think we couldn't beat them or not because if winnie made a couple of shots they would have been the winner and someone else would have been POY and we wouldn't even be having this discussion.


    IF, IF, IF.... Milford got lucky to beat Portsmouth in the semis...It was a great game that could have gone either way - and you know it. IF a play in those last few minutes goes a different way, we are talking about a Portsmouth repeat or a Pembroke title. You won, you get the credit, but do not delude yourself that you would have beaten that Pinkerton team in the week following the Class L title game.

    The phantom Pinkerton-Milford game being discussed would have been played at the end of LAST year, what you did this summer is completely irrelevant to the discussion.

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  123. The truly scary part about this is the fact that Scott King could have been part of that State title team in Derry. How good would that team have been with another long wing to make shots and be a defensive presence.
    No one would have touched them.

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  124. Some of you folks need to get a life.This article has, at last look, over a 120 comments. The article before this one is about a kid who is fighting for his life because of a football injury. That article received ONE comment. People get a grip! After being a high school and AAU coach for years it is clear to me that the life lessons we have tried to teach the kids have not trickled up to the parents. It is about the kids not you. If you look at last year's high school basketball players there were only 3 D1 scholarships given to NH players, all girls. Please support both coaches. Your kids won't have mom and dad fighting their battles much longer. Teach them about what is important in life. Have them look at the the article on the Doucette kid. I am sure all this engery could be spent on something that matters. These are Games. The Doucette kid is real life.

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  125. Hey If IF IF, it cannot be both. Someone is playing you. You point out that we left and didnt watch the class L title game and then that person points out someone missing a few shots that would have won that game. How the heck would we know that if we didn't stay to watch. I am telling you guys there is someone talking like they are Milford and you are buying it.
    Someone knows more about that class L title game than the Milford boys that weren't there do.

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  126. I guess Mr. Mitchell is damned if he does and damned if he doesn't.

    I think Mike Mitchell Sr. of Milford is the most colorful, controversial, contumacious, controllable, contentious, complaining, carping colloquialists we have in NH basketball.

    Enjoy the effervescent Mr. Mitchell this upcoming season. Sadly, we only have about 10 more months to enjoy him.

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  127. Once again the anonymity thing is my issue. We see what happens when no one signs there name they feel they can say anything. We did get to see what happens when a person is quoting talking crap this week though we get an apology.
    I think the biggest practical joke ever would be to get a heated anonymous blog going and then find a way to publish the locations that the post are coming from. I bet we would have a bunch of people embarrassed and sending apologies to Jeremy and many others.
    That would be the funniest thing ever. I am sure we all would learn about out friends and so called enemies then.

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  128. When I get done looking up Contumacious I will respond. Stay tuned. lol

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  129. 10 months? Why ten? Is there a hit on me I dont know about?

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  130. It's not all about playing in college. There are many players that play aau ball in order to make themselves better for their high school team. Many of these players have the ability to play at a higher level and may choose not to to play in college. Give them the opportunity to better themselves with AAU, but let them be able to enjoy their high school and college experiences with or without basketball. My point is this...don't forget to ask your son/daughter what they really want to do.

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  131. For the record Woodward was a very tough player to guard buy most of the time when we played Lebanon it was Mike O on Woodward not Nelson or Desmarais.

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  132. Hey If IF IF, it cannot be both. Someone is playing you. You point out that we left and didnt watch the class L title game and then that person points out someone missing a few shots that would have won that game. How the heck would we know that if we didn't stay to watch.

    Can you read ? My statement was about your game! You attempt to downplay Pinkerton's OT win, yet you barely beat Portsmouth in OT in the semis and somehow that vicory means dominance in your mind. The comment was about your game! It was a game that could have gone either way and if you played in it or where actually there to watch it you would already know that. YOU cannot have it both ways.

    Mr. Mitchell has already told you what everyone in the state who saw Mathieu play knew. He was on another level. Milford did not have the ability to stop him without fouling him. You would have to shoot an absurd % for the eintire game to have any shot at all.

    Lets get back to the orignal discussion - I think we have beaten this one to death already!

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  133. Jeremy start a new rant about Rhode Islands new tourney now. Suggest that would be the best way for NH to see Pinkerton vs Milford

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  134. Thanks 9:41, I think we beat both to death actually.
    Rumors are out that North has a new Point guard from NC. Anyone see this kid yet?

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  135. 8:23 has made the most sense on here so far.

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  136. 10 months because there is:

    Fall League - 2 months

    Pre-season - 1 month

    Real Season - 4 months

    Post season discussion and awards - 2 months

    Rotary Game discussion - 2 months

    That's your 10 months of Mitchell Time.

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  137. I am missed already. lol
    The following season I will be coaching a travel team... the legend lives on! lol

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  138. My Son Brad Holler will play for BG and Jim Mignault this year, Coach Mignault has zero issues with the Rivals and actually promoted/agreed with my sons participation fully. Brad Holler play's for the Mass Rivals elite u 16's and 17's. AAU produces better ballers....PERIOD.These high school coaches arent stupid. bg is one of the top 3 teams in winning pct pretty consistantly.Mig's is one of top 3 coaches in state hands down, he knows where his talent comes from. has no issues with AAU Basketball or the Rival's. Your comments have nothing to do with AAU/High School ball just taking an unfactual cheap shot at a good guy...pretty weak dude.....Bill Holler

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  139. MM coaching a travel team in 2 years?

    The referees better have holy water in their water bottles and crosses hanging from their necks.

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  140. I'm confused Mr Holler.

    Who took a cheap shot at Migs in this thread?

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  141. Sorry but i don't agree with Zach M being a different level at all nobody on winnie was big enough to handle him but that doesn't make him a different level just because he's taller. Look at what Madol a junior did to him he out scored him 19 to 17 or BG with green held him to 22 while scoring 17 as a junior? So sorry just because he doesn't play many taller guys in class l doesn't make him a different level player if that was the case then those two juniors would not have out played him nice try though.

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  142. playoffs were different. Remeber Pinkerton beat the team that Beat BG.

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  143. Nice try 11:18, but I didn't see Green or Madol leading their teams to a Class L Title last season. Mathieu set a record for most points scored in a Class L title game. That's pretty good for "being taller." I think Zach will take the L title, being WGAM's player of the year and having the record for most points in a Class L Title game and look at your previous post, 11:18 and just laugh.

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  144. I will not comment on the matchup between Madol and Zach because to me they are totally different players but Zach was the toughest matchup in the tourney. I think he proved that in NH. Maybe on the AAU circuit where 6:7" is small for a big he would not stand out but lets face it in NH as a post guy he was unmatched.

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  145. It really is sad that a grown man would spend so much time and energy on such trivial subjects that outside a very small and limited group of people nobody cares about.Do something useful today,MAKE A DONATION TO THE SUPERCOOP FUND.

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  146. After reading these childish comments, I came up with A GREAT IDEA to help A child.Have a preseason tourny {scrimmages} with all proceeds going to the super coop fund.Have it at North,on a Saturday,200 dollars per team,10 bucks for adults,5 for seniors,all going to supercoop.Teams would come out of the woodwork to play in it,make it a 2 day thing if you have to.If North doesn't want to host it,I am sure some school would step up.Let's use our blogging powers for good instead of paanoid conspiracy theories.I have got the ball rolling,who will run with it.

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  147. december 4th or 11th would be the perfect days to have it.

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  148. We could call it SUPER HOOP FOR SUPERCOOP,make it happen coaches and ad's that read this blog.

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  149. Seriously a lot of people here need to get a grip. My daughter has played AAU and school ball for a number of years and is ranked as one of the top players in her class. There is good and bad with both. The comments above really highlight just how wacked out parents get with their kids playing sports. Come on, get it back in perspective parents.

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  150. Nice try 11:18, but I didn't see Green or Madol leading their teams to a Class L Title last season. Mathieu set a record for most points scored in a Class L title game. That's pretty good for "being taller." I think Zach will take the L title, being WGAM's player of the year and having the record for most points in a Class L Title game and look at your previous post, 11:18 and just laugh.

    Tuesday, August 24, 2010 11:34:00 PM EDT

    Like i said earlier i think Zach had a great year i just don't think he's at a level higher he played against smaller and weaker centers in the playoffs but when he played against a madol and a green he wasn't this so called higher level player and must i remind you again they were juniors not seniors so if you really believe that he is a higher level just take a look back at those games where he was out played by them and tell me how you get higher level out of that now that's something you might not be able to laugh at because it really happened.

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  151. Lets not make it too complicated. Jeremy get the gym at the rac ready and on Sunday night we can do a open gym style thing where everyone brings a donation. All the kids get to play and donations help a good cause.
    Those talking about grownups spending to much time here make me laugh. It is early evening,rainy day and half of the world is sitting on a computer and you guys are making a big deal about it. It is just chat no worse for you than watching Jersey Shore or Bad Girls Club.

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  152. I am new to this blog thing, a friend of my sons showed it to me yesterday and I must say anyone from Pinkerton will tell you that Zach was such a different player in the playoffs. He was getting the ball much deeper into the post and he really learned how to move from block to block sealing his defender. Would it have been nice to see him defended by Green or Madol yes but if they could not win enough games to meet him in the playoffs you can hardly blame or take something away from him.

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  153. Like i said earlier i think Zach had a great year i just don't think he's at a level higher he played against smaller and weaker centers in the playoffs but when he played against a madol and a green he wasn't this so called higher level player and must i remind you again they were juniors not seniors so if you really believe that he is a higher level just take a look back at those games where he was out played by them and tell me how you get higher level out of that now that's something you might not be able to laugh at because it really happened.

    The point is not about ANY one game during the regular season. It is about the level he was playing in those last 4 games! Where I come from we called it crunch time. He LED his team to the title. Madol & Green did NOT. Green only scored 11 vs Winnacunnet, that sounds quite ordinary to me. Madol only scored 9 in Trinity's opening round loss to Exeter. Again - VERY ORDINARY. Mathieu's LOW for the 4 playoff games was 20. So if these other two were so incredible, why did they play so poorly and he led his team to the title? If they were on the level he was at the end, surely the could have gotten their teams to a point to meet Pinkerton. They did not. It is fact, your opinion is not backed-up by any facts, just ifs.

    By the way, there are no style points for your year of graduation.

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  154. If I remember correctly those three did not even cover reach other when they played. Not like they went head to head. what's the difference?

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  155. Enough with the senior Mathieu going against juniors. Big deal. It just sounds like an excuse to me. Mathieu far and away was the best player in the playoffs last season. And yes....

    ...HE DID PLAY AT A HIGHER LEVEL THAN ANY ONE ELSE. Accept it and move on "Mr. Senior going against Juniors."

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  156. Sorry but wrong he didn't play anyone his size in the playoffs and we he did play against juniors his size he did not play at this so called higher level so like it or not it's the truth and if BG played Pinkerton last year ten times they win 9 out of 10 guaranteed playoffs included.

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  157. Read all the comments above and if you are honest you'll understand why high school/AAU hoops is a bastion of egotistical kids and delusional parents. I can't even attend high school games anymore with all the whining, yappying, and self promoting that goes on in the stands and on the court.

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  158. Can you self promote a player from the stands? lol

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  159. "if BG played Pinkerton last year ten times they win 9 out of 10 guaranteed playoffs included."

    Wednesday, August 25, 2010 7:47:00 PM EDT

    Well, I have just one response to the above post:

    1983

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  160. 7:47,

    So Guys like Lew Alcindor (aka Kareem for you youngins) Bill Walton, Ralph Sampson, Shaq, etc were never really good when they were seniors in high school because they did not play against guys there own size in every game? You are are only fooling yourself with these insane comments. Most coasches call that a matchup advantage. Are you old enough to remember watching Magic johnson play. When he came into the league no on ehad ever seen a 6'9" PG in the NBA. I guess by your conceptual thought process, he was overrated because he had an advantage and exploited it fully!

    BG won the only matchup, absolutely true. BUT BG choked in the semis, there can be NO other explanation if you think they were so good they could beat Pinkerton 9 out of 10 times. (although you are the only one in the state thinking that way).

    What you 'think' is not going to put that state title in your showcase.

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  161. Jeremy can we move on from this? Your original topic was good but people are taking it too far and getting way off track. As a few have recommended, lets put energy into something positive, rather than just the negative with ripping players/coaches apart.

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  162. Don't worry guys. I've got a new post coming today that will keep everyone talking.

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  163. This is the difference between Milford bloggers and BG bloggers. At least the Milford bloggers have the 2010 state title plaque in their award's case. Even though Milford people can be irritating at times you have to respect the fact they have something to back up their internet chest thumping.

    BG bloggers on the other hand..... thump their chests and say ridiculous things like, "BG would've beaten Pinkerton 9 out of 10 times last year", even though BG didn't even play in the title game, let alone win the championship.

    One question I have for the BG b-ball bloggers:

    Do they take out that 1983 Championship plaque and dust it yearly or is there 27 years of dust accumulated on it?

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  164. I think they take the 83 trophy out and kiss it. Man, that was a long time ago to be brining that up....

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  165. Milford kids all live in Milford also.

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  166. If you hate bg so much,don't send your kid to open gym.

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  167. I like the poster earlier who said Milford couldn't play with class L teams but forgot to mention the rankings and realize they have the most kids from one team in the 2011 rankings from 1 to 20 with four. So i don't know how many it would take to play against the class L teams but let us know if you get a chance thanks yours truly, irritating Milfordite.

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  168. Question, is a woman from Milford called a Hermilfordite?

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  169. I play football no time for open gym.

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  170. 2:30 that was some funny stuff.

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  171. Guys let's get real here. Not every comment on here comes from Mike Mitchell Sr.

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  172. If it is I sure got a great range of views. lol

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  173. Bloggers own/operate blogs. Jeremy = bloger

    Commenters are people like everybody else here. Anonymous = commenter

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  174. I prefer to call myself a reporter. Blogger sounds amateur and unprofessional. But hey, I've been called worse...especially by my ex-wife!!

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  175. Question, is a woman from Milford called a Hermilfordite?

    Thursday, August 26, 2010 2:30:00 PM EDT

    Not unless she moved from your home town.LOL

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  176. In reality Jeremy you are both. You report what happens in sporting events so that side of you is a reporter but you do also add your opinion to it which is more of a blogger/color commentator. The world is full of both and today there is a fine line between reporting and blogging. To me the news is no longer reported it is interpreted. Think about how things use to be? It use to be the news was the story and opinion was not really added in. Now as soon as something happens most news analyst try to spin it and add an opinion to sway thought process of the voting public or at least public opinion. It is a different world now when it comes to news and opinion.

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  177. To me it is boring to read "Just the news" or "Just the facts." That's why I add my opinion into everything. I fall asleep reading game stories where all it is is the final score, the leading scorers and a ton of quotes from the coaches/players. Not only is this boring to read, but with these types of game stories the reporter has demonstrated no actual knowledge of the game.

    Anyways, back on topic!

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  178. Nice story on Scott King NERR Another D1 player for the rivals. And to think he was bench warmer at pinkerton two years ago?

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  179. My coach hates AAU, I got benched in varsity summer league games because I went to nationals with the Spartans, even though I was the leading scorer

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