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RichlandsAlum

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RichlandsAlum last won the day on June 28 2018

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About RichlandsAlum
 
 
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    A complicated man, nobody understands me but my woman. Can you dig it?
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    Your imagination
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    Chinese arithmetic
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    Raconteur
 
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  1. Make no mistake, the head coaches definitely have a firm idea about what the numbers are right now. Any of them who aren't on top of them well in advance of two a days probably aren't long for the profession. This is a real and growing issue with a lot of contributing factors.
  2. Pretty sure that it originated with Navy back in 2012 for the Army game. It's been adopted by more than a few teams since (including Virginia Tech). I agree that it's pretty sharp. TW's logo and color scheme work well for the concept.
  3. I did. Although I was only about 10 years old at the time, I took an active interest in the NBA (along with a lot of other people) when Magic and Bird came into the league. But everybody was already aware of Moses Malone by then. He was an absolute beast in the early 1980's. Pretty much put Houston on his shoulders and carried them to the 1981 Finals. And he was the missing link that allowed the 76ers to briefly break the stranglehold that the Celtics and Lakers had on the league when he moved to Philadelphia. I will always argue that the 1983 Sixers were the very best team in the history of the NBA -- but that's only true because of Malone. And the team was never the same after his ankle injuries the following year. That's the kind of impact that I observed.
  4. My kids' school (Liberty-Bedford) also won the 3A softball title in Salem this morning. Good day all around in the Alum household!
  5. I wasn't there, but it sounds like Richlands made a pretty good showing after Martinsville jumped on them early. Congratulations to the Blues for a great season overall and for making a big stride in the life of the program. The semifinal between Martinsville and George Mason has the potential to be a real treat for any soccer fans/spectators that can make it to Radford on Friday morning. I was a bit surprised by the margin in the Giles-Graham match. But I know that this particular generation of Giles players have done exceedingly well. I'll also offer the observation that the Region D soccer teams are at a disadvantage compared to the rest of Virginia due to the effects of travel ball. The ability to effectively play year round against challenging competition makes a huge difference. Here's hoping that the current recreational soccer arrangements in God's County can blossom into something a bit larger.
  6. Sharing these observations largely gained from competing against them in travel ball (as well as preseason friendlies) over the years. Beginning with an understatement -- overcoming this Martinsville team is not going to be easy. But it can be done. They are very talented -- and they know it. But the main portions of their game plan are largely psychological. Generally speaking they are aggressive, physical, and do their best to be intimidating. It's the way they are coached from the time they start playing travel ball for PYSL and they execute it very well. They are also very well disciplined. Although they may push the limits, they generally are not a "chippy" team. But they have an uncanny ability to push their opponents to play that way -- and once inside another team's head, their talent is usually enough to resolve the issue definitively and in fairly short order. It's not quite "shock and awe" but it's not far from it. It's important for an opponent to understand that going in (particularly teams that may be experiencing it for the first time). But if your players can be confident in their own ability, play their own game plan, and deliberately ignore the "bait" in terms of the mental aspect of the match that will dramatically increase your odds of success (and by "dramatically" I mean that it still mostly raises your odds to being closer to even). If it's possible to score on them early, then keep pressing that advantage to the greatest possible extent. Since they don't find themselves in a position of playing from behind very often, it's even possible that an opposing team can flip the psychological aspect against them if you can build a lead of at least 3 goals. But it's very difficult to ever put them away. Even though it doesn't happen to them often, as a team they are designed to recover and overcome negative margins that most other teams cannot. Some opponents (like Giles in VHSL and a couple of clubs in travel) have gained familiarity over the years and figured out how to compete against them. But even those teams haven't had a high level of success against this particular group of players. Along with their outstanding facilities in the Smith River complex, Martinsville is blessed by an outstanding program overall in terms of their school and travel teams. Really great coaching and genuinely good folks overall. Like most folks in the area, I have a tremendous amount of respect for what they are doing there. Sharing this mainly due to my lifelong allegiance to Richlands as my alma mater -- not because I have an axe to grind or harbor any ill will toward Martinsville. (Quite the contrary, actually.) Here's hoping for a great match and congratulations to both sides for making it this far.
  7. Appreciate the kind words. Truth is that I have quite a bit of inside information when it comes to SR based on my involvement with a travel club that most of those guys played with. I have directly coached or managed 9 of this year's starters (great kids and families all). This is arguably the very best team that Staunton River has ever fielded -- and in terms of talent it may be the high water mark there for a long time. They will be the underdog heading into the next round, but I wouldn't be surprised to see them knock off Cave Spring. The development of travel soccer in this area has really benefited the local high school teams. Pretty much all players in the area between Radford and Lynchburg (and Lexington and Martinsville/Danville running somewhat north to south) have access to good year-round competition now. Congrats to Abingdon on a superb season and continued prayers for healing.
  8. The Eagles have a core group of some very talented members who have been playing together for several years (both within the program and in regional travel circuits). Don't be deceived by their record -- they beat Lord Botetourt (the #3 seed in the region) in the Blue Ridge District tournament just last week.
  9. Picking up on observations about the college recruiting game (at least as it pertains to soccer). Three kids from Liberty are planning to play at the Division III level next year. One of those is actually going to run track, but also plans to explore the possibility of walking on the soccer team at his school. (And a fourth kid is actually going to play football at a Division II school.) The most intriguing case to me is the kid who -- by every possible estimation -- is the most talented member of the team (and probably one of the most talented overall in the history of the program). He has played travel ball at the highest possible level for several years, participated in the Olympic Development Program, and pretty much done everything possible to put himself out there for consideration. I don't think Division III was what he had in mind -- although I have little doubt that he will play brilliantly at that level. But he just doesn't stand out in terms of his physical profile. I'm sure that the fact that we are finishing the season with a losing record and far short of qualifying for the regional playoffs probably isn't helping him much, either. (Then again, that last point obviously didn't impact the ability of the other two seniors to move on to the next level.)
  10. Musselman was announced at Arkansas yesterday.
  11. The only names that appear to have been on the "list" that we'll ever know about are Young, Ryan Odom, and Kevin Willard. But I think it's reasonable to believe that Forbes was at least on the radar. He is doing a great job at ETSU and probably gets some looks from ADs at "higher level" schools. My opinion is that the combination of relatively short tenure as a Division I head coach and his age probably work against him. Seems like a fantastic fit for the job he currently holds. (Of course that last statement applies just as much to Young at Wofford -- but he had some other intangible qualities that moved the needle, comparatively speaking.)
  12. I think it's both a good hire and a wise one. Tech is likely staring down the barrel at a drop off next year. Would have been true even if Buzz had reversed course and decided to stay (never a realistic option -- but one that Whit Babcock was forced to view as such). That dynamic probably chased away several bigger names, who are past the point at which they want to tolerate a losing year on their resume. After doing a reality check and identifying the pool of options who would be willing, it appears that Babcock zeroed in on his top choice there and landed him. No guarantee of success on the court (there never is, of course). But that's a pretty shrewd way to do business. And if Young can get the Hokies back in the big dance within 3-4 seasons, this might be the hoops equivalent of a Beamer-esque hire (given Young's SW VA roots). Completely open to what would have been a better realistic option, but hard to imagine one.
  13. I currently live about an hour and 15 minutes away from Farmville (where Longwood is located). In Virginia terms, it's simultaneously centrally located but also in the middle of nowhere. From an athletic standpoint, it is in a very tough spot. Only 15 years removed from Division II and didn't secure membership in a conference (the Big South) until 2012. The softball program is the only team that has made much of that opportunity. The baseball team has been historically competitive (and done well at the Division III and II levels). But to date their basketball program hasn't made it past the semifinals in the Big South tournament. Exposure of any kind is good for them, but there isn't a lot of cachet associated with the CBI, playing on ESPN Plus, and/or competing against a directional Mississippi. If anything, Southern Miss probably has a lot of the same challenges as Longwood and represents the relative height of the ceiling that Longwood could expect to achieve. Very good programs in teacher education (which was the purpose behind its founding). In fact, if you want to be a public school teacher in Virginia, Longwood is a very solid choice. The university overall can probably be categorized as up and coming. Serving as host site for the 2016 vice presidential debate probably did more overall for promoting a positive brand than anything else.
  14. #$@&!!!!! I liked things a lot more a few weeks ago when they were boring. I think we will look back to yesterday as the exact point when Reds surrendered the title to City.
  15. Fellow Nats fan/sufferer here. Overall I think Washington is better off without him -- but Philadelphia is the one landing spot where he has the greatest potential to do harm to our team. Seems like Harper has always hit the ball well in Citizens Bank Park. My kids gathered up all the Harper-specific stuff they have for the garbage. But I'm hanging on to it for a couple of days. Thinking about mailing it in a package to him with a few bucks from the boys' allowance -- since he seems to be so hard up for cash and all.
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