Scheduling, Thoughts, and a TweetTweak…

We’ll begin the four-in-sevens in just a second, but here’s a note as I spent my Sunday afternoon mired in the depths of Excel…

CAA folks love comparisons and results against the A13. (If they don’t have to have the number correct, neither do I.) The A8 is the most in-between conference out there–clearly very good but not major.

Last season, the CAA was 8-6 against A16 competition. As I was going through everyone’s schedule I felt like I saw a lot of Richmond, Dayton, and Rhode Island.

I did.

The first thought was: have mid majors secretly decided to play each other a whole heckuva lot more than people notice? I noticed MAC teams everywhere, too. Second thought: that’s a pile of A11 games. Let’s count them.

So I did, except Georgia State, the lone CAA team to hold back its nonconference slate. Note: there will be an addition or two and exempt tournaments will alter the number, but everyone else has released at least a tentative nonconference skedder.

I counted at least 18 games between the two conferences this season. The most interesting part: Dayton and Richmond indeed showed up a multiple schedules, and those two make up two of the top three teams in that conference.


We’re going to break into the four-in-sevens slowly this season and in a specific manner. It isn’t my place to announce a school’s schedule, so I won’t talk about any specific team until the school has released it.

You don’t need to know it here first, you need to know what is important about it. That said, here’s the first group of four-in-sevens.

For the uninitiated, the CAA kicks off its official conference season by playing four games in seven days the first week of  January. With 18 conference games and one Saturday devoted to Bracketbusters, this is a scheduling must. It isn’t fun for anybody except the fans.

This season, the four-in-seven logistics: Saturday January 2; Monday January 4; Wednesday January 6; Saturday January 9. (Subject to change for teevee.)

James Madison

Happy New Year Matt Brady—now get on a plane to Boston. Two days later come on home for Delaware. Take 81 south and 64 east and go say hello to Blaine Taylor. Head home to meet Pat Kennedy.

Two at home and two on the road is very fair, and NU, Delaware, ODU, and Towson is a good mix. I’ll tell you that for the most part the schedule-maker was extremely fair. Of course a couple teams have a hard road, and a couple have it easier, but all-in-all, this is as fair as it could be, given the permutations.

Key part of schedule for JMU: Starting January 30, JMU is at Mason, home Hofstra, at Towson before homers with ODU and VCU. Those last two (and avoiding a banana peel) could be season makers. And a shot of confidence in February.


Take two and call me in the morning: the Pride hosts W&M, heads to Mason, hosts Towson, and heads to ODU. Let’s call it 2-2 and let Pecora take care of the detail, eh? (But very fair, no?)

Key part: This is the most balanced, straightforward schedule I saw. Good blend of home and road, travel and test. The toughest part is coming out of the four-in-seven. From ODU, the Pride hosts VCU, heads to W&M (trapper), hosts Mason and heads to Drexel.


The Rams have to feel good with its season opening gauntlet. Not great, but good: home to UNCW and then NU, roadie to Drexel, and back home for Delaware. Three homers and a busride to Philly before the legs get tired.

They’d better enjoy it, because the key part of its schedule is a back-breaker: home to ODU on Feb 6, then at Mason, at JMU, home Drexel, home JMU, and at ODU to end the year. Eesh.


The Tigers get three roadies and the preseason favorite at their barn. If Pat Kennedy wanted a test for his troops, he’s got it. Four-in-seven opens at Georgia State, then the privilege of ODU at home, followed by a trip to Hofstra and trip to JMU.

Key stretch: beginning Jan 20, Towson gets NU and Mason at home, then three straight roadies at VCU, UNCW, and at Drexel.


As brought to us by DeeCee bloglord Dan Steinberg, Jim Larranaga is ending his run as one of the most prolific coaching tweeters.

Our view: for cripes’ sake.

I don’t know one single fact, but I’m pretty good at reading between the lines. Clearly somebody got to Ol’ Coach L and told him that his tweet comment caused a firestorm that the NCAA frowned upon. It became too much of a hassle for the coach.

Coach L, being the good corporate citizen that he is, chose a position of backpeddling. Since he calls Near DC his home, backpeddling disguised as an honest position splashed with a dose of “what I really meant was” is the way to go.

So he’s done tweeting, at least for now.

Luckily we’re all smarter. We’re not blowing anything out of proportion. This is simply a case of the world not remaining 1985, when only a handful of newspapers could call baloney on organizational hubris like we can now.

Gone are the days of the printed clarification ad we drop it. We get to see more and share more, and that’s what’s going on here. (And the NCAA is a bastion of hubris.)

I still say spending resources to draw the line that schools can offer bagels but not cream cheese is is a ridiculous waste of time and energy. So does anyone with half a brain.

Coach L called them on it, and was slapped. It’s unfortunate that a coach who was rightfully poking fun at something in his industry is forced to backpeddle. We like coaches who will actually say a few things and enjoy it.

The fact that Larranaga is backpeddling and no longer tweeting over something so silly is exactly why it is silly. Hysterically, I can picture somebody at NCAA HQ furiously typing a memo that will be faxed somewhere.

It will be interesting to see how this impacts all coaches tweeting. I said since coachtweet became popular that I couldn’t wait for October 15 to see what would happen with the twitter enthusiasm.

Sadly I don’t think we have to wait.


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