SVC Boys' Basketball Preview
After giving the fans eight things from the girls’ basketball preview last week, I do the same this week from the boys’
1. Time to restructure the preview? The two-quarter exhibition - that includes sitting every starter with any
soreness while playing crazy combinations that run none of the playbook - has reached a point of a much needed
reconstruction. Obviously this is not the first mention of this, and the first response from the league is the financial
gain is too important. Well, tonight was the worst attendance I have seen in recent history, and the gym was filled
with all sorts of people who acted extremely miserable to be there. Perhaps it was the ZT football game or maybe
the fact that three SVC girls teams opened the season Friday, but there has to be a better way to do it.
How about combining the boys and girls and making it a NBA all-star night of sorts. A three-point shooting contest
for girls (one per school) and boys (one per school), and then have the boy and girl champion shoot it off in the
end. You could also use the skills challenge obstacle course, or how cool would it be to use the shooting challenge
with a boy, girl, male alumni, and a female alumni. It would still be a great gate, little chance of injury, and an
opportunity for the local media to cover all the programs in great detail (especially if held at a unique time during
the preseason). Just some thoughts…love to hear your feedback.
2. Reloading at Unioto…Coming off a special year, Unioto now looks to reload and defend its title. Coach Hoops
and his team will do so with a huge bullseye as I have heard nothing but Unioto when asking fans, coaches, and
even some players who they consider as the team to beat.
3. The Football Factor…With ZT falling to Wheelersburg Friday night, it will be time for the Pioneers to quickly
transition to the basketball court. Zane Trace does have some experience back including one the area’s top talents
in Pierce Mowery. History has shown 12 or 13 weeks of football makes it tough to start quickly in basketball. There
are also rumors circulating that ZT could possibly have some additions to the roster later in the year. Add all this up
and perhaps it means teams could get ZT early, but the Pioneers could become dangerous as the calendar turns to
4. No More Growing Pains…It wasn’t that long ago when I watched Westfall play with a young, talented
backcourt, and I was in conversations with people talking about how this team was a few years away from being
really good. Well, a few years later the roster has physically matured and the expectations have grown for the
Mustangs. With three or four potential all-league talents, WF is considered by many one of the top contenders to
push the Tanks for the title.
On a related note, when I think back about this Westfall group I wonder if we are not watching a Huntington group
that is just a year or two behind the Mustangs on the same type of building process. Huntington has a backcourt
that is now a year older with still another year to go, and Coach Kellough still has some youth at the guard position
in the freshman and sophomore classes that could make for some solid depth in the years to come.
5. Don’t assume Southeastern and Piketon are going to go to the bottom four without a fight. I have had
many people labeling this as a rebuilding year for SE and Piketon. On paper, perhaps that is a fair prediction, but
Friday night showed me some potential that can spread the court and shoot the rock. Also, the SE group is built to
defend the way Coach Cox likes to coach defense. Panthers could be a sleeper and Piketon still has enough to be
6. Successful Surgery…Paint Valley’s Anthony McFadden, who quarterbacked his Bearcats to Week 12 of the
football playoffs, is going to be sidelined for the first half of the season. The senior, who is going to push 1,000
career points if he returns soon enough, had successful surgery on Friday. Paint Valley is an interesting team with
sophomore Dylan Swingle in the post and a few new faces in the backcourt. The McFadden absence will make for
tough times early, but the experience others will get could make PV really dangerous later in the season.
7. Post Play? It is certainly a guard-heavy league. Only a few teams have great size in the post, so the league is
probably going to see a lot of four and five guard lineups. I think rebounding from the guard spots is going to be
important, and the teams without a post presence must find ways with the dribble to still get the ball inside and get
to the free throw line. Also, the teams such as Unioto or PV must find ways to use this size advantage.
8. With no spaghetti dinner this week, I was forced to wait until the ride home to get something to eat,
so I guess I have to actually come up with another basketball thought – how about, the talented two-
shade blue. This is probably the most talent an Adena team has had since 2006. I have watched them multiple
times in the preseason, and they can certainly score the basketball in a variety of ways. It will be interesting to see
how they evolve on the defensive end, and how they handle the ups-and-downs of playing the 14-game grind as a
Be listening to some of our upcoming shows this week on SVC Sports Talk as we will preview the boys’ league, the
girls’ league, and in both cases will hear from some area coaches and athletes on the upcoming season.