This is my first of weekly columns about non D-1 college basketball around the Northwest. I am open to suggestions, information and anything else you can throw at me please. Of course I will continue to write my columns for CSNNW.com, Crawford's Court, every Monday and Thursday, which is mainly on D-1 basketball. If you are getting this for the first time, or are an avid reader thank you as always for reading this. My sincere hope is that you will enjoy this and please feel free to send me the email of anyone you think would like getting this every weekend and I will automatically send it to them. Ok here we go.
OIT---Of course the big story in NAIA as of late, was the ending of the 65 game home court winning streak by Warner Pacific, when they defeated the Hustlin Owls in Klamath Falls. A great victory for sure by the Knights, who might be playing the best basketball in the Cascade Conference at present, as this past weekend they broke the 14 game winning streak of Northwest, in the Knight's home gym.
I would be remiss, if I didn't mention fact that in the ending of the 65 game home court winning streak, it was an awesome feat by Danny Miles' team to win that many games in a row. So awesome that at the time in was the longest home winning streak in all of college basketball and went back to 2008.
There is one certainty about the Cascade Conference, the basketball is always good and it is just fun games to watch, as any of you know when you attend a game.
Pacific----It was nice recently to meet second year Pacific coach Tim Cleary of the Boxers (I still really like the nickname Badgers, which I am use to calling Pacific) As I am considered a marketing specialist by many, what a great move it would be by Pacific to go back to the old nickname. When you talk to Tim Cleary you can just see his enthusiasm for his job and why I think the Pacific the basketball program of the Northwest Conference is in good hands for many years to come. Like the Cascade Conference, the Northwest Conference plays a great brand of basketball so please get out and see a game, if you are able too.
Cliff Wegner---It was my pleasure over the holidays to attend the Clackamas Community College Holiday tournament. What a great event and very well done by Cliff Wegner and his staff of people who put the tournament together. This tournament will be on my basketball schedule for many years to come to attend, as the teams are so competitive and fun to watch. It is also always fun to go to a sporting event where there are so many smiles, not to mention the fact at Community College games you see so many four year college coaches looking for talented players. On January 11th, Wegner's Cougars will host Chemeketa and that is a game well worth attending, especially when there is not much competition on a Wednesday night with other sports.
Larry Doty---Big congratulations to Linfield basketball coach Larry Doty for tying the legendary Ted Wilson for career wins at the McMinnville school this past Saturday night. All basketball coaches work hard, much harder than anyone knows and Coach Doty is right at the top of the list, as you see him all over the place scouting and looking for players. He has a nice young team and they will be a factor in the Northwest Conference race in years to come, once the young players get more experience.
Western Oregon---The national coach of year in all of college basketball at present has to be Brady Bergeson the head coach of the Western Oregon Wolves of the GNAC D-2 conference. After this past weekend Bergeson has his team at 6-0 in league play after having a great pre-league record of 7-2. The Wolves at present have a 10 game winning streak over D-2 opponents. Prior to Bergeson arriving at Western Oregon, the basketball program was average at best. Needless to say, he has turned things around, remarkably in the first year, which is so hard to do on any level of basketball. It is a long GNAC season, but no matter what happens down the road, Bergeson has done at awesome job and it is well worth taking a look at his team. It is kind of a shame that the GNAC Conference and Root Sports are not showing the GNAC basketball game of the week this year. That seemed to be a popular event last year, but it ended. So get to Monmouth, Oregon to see the Wolves, you will not be disappointed.
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Thank you and each week, I hope this weekend edition of Craw's Corner will get better, please help me in doing so.