Late summer is an awkward time for the sport of college basketball. Any and all news slows to a relative trickle. Barring awkward Twitter reveals, newsy blog posts are frustratingly meager.
The most important dynamic this time of year is recruiting. It provides an early update on the teenage talent we’ll see in years to come, and it can lead to some fascinating tableaux. To wit, see Jason King’s fascinating all-access trip to Las Vegas with Nebraska coach Tim Miles, which details the somewhat insane lengths college coaches must brave to be where they need (or want) to be for reasons both logistical and symbolic. (If your top recruiting target doesn’t see you in the crowd at tip off, he may just interpret that as a lack of “love,” or whatever, and no coach wants to take that risk. Forget the icky love notes on Twitter. How wacky is that?) So Miles jumps from Vegas tournaments to Kansas City to Vegas again, and the impression is one we’re familiar with by now: College coaches carry insane schedules, especially in the summer.
Which is why the following quote from William and Mary coach Tony Shaver – as told to CAA Hoops Thursday – feels like the most appropriate possible epigraph for early August. Now that things are beginning to wind down, what does Shaver plan to do with his time? In the immortal words of Peter Gibbons, nothing. Shaver wants to do nothing:
“The Shaver family is going to sit on the beach and I’m throwing my cell phone into the ocean,“ he said. ”Then we’ll come home and get rolling.”
My summer is never as crazy as a college coach’s, that’s for sure. But boy does that line resonate. Anyone in a half-filled office on a Friday afternoon in the summer knows what I'm talking about.
Of course, I don’t have the onions to throw my phone into the ocean. No way, man. I might miss a Twitter mention. But maybe in the Shaver spirit I’ll turn off iOS notifications this weekend. OK, I’ll put my phone on silent. All right, all right -- vibrate. Let’s not get carried away.