Monday, August 17, 2009

ESPN's ShootArounds Begin

ESPN's college basketball "ShootAround" series is usually a good place to go for early season previews. They just went online with their first one today: the ACC. They rest of the conferences will go up over the next few weeks, and should all be accessible from that first link.

ESPN is not any better at predicting the conference standings than any number of other college basketball websites, but they do a good job of highlighting players and games to look out for.

Another reason to look at ESPN's previews is that it gives you a good idea of what stories they'll be hyping as we head into the 2009-10 season. Like it or not, the fact is that ESPN sets the sports story lines in this country. Everybody else hypes whatever ESPN hypes. When ESPN is running 24/7 coverage of Tebow-gate (the fact that some apostate caused Tebow to not be a unanimous first-team All-SEC quarterback for 2009), you can be pretty confident that you're going to be getting a healthy dose of Tim Tebow puff pieces from September through January. So looking at who gets the attention of ESPN's writers in August and September will give you a good idea of who will be getting a lot of air time as we head into the winter.

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