Last updated: August 24. 2013 6:23PM - 50 Views

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Weíre heading into the holiday tournament time of year, which means a good chunk of basketball season is already behind us. Just think, once all of the egg nog and yuletide cheer has worn off, thereís really only six weeks left of the boys regular season. And even less for the girls.Thereís a few things Iíve needed to get off my chest, but none are worthy of a full column. So, I figured why not lump them all together and try to pull something out of it? Really, itís just makes too much sense.Consider it a late Christmas gift. Lucky you, eh?-- A few teams in the boys and girls varieties have started to separate from the pack. Shawnee, Ottawa-Glandorf and New Knoxville look strong on the boys side. And Lima Central Catholic coach Bob Seggerson called Ada, ďa state-caliber team.ĒNew Knoxville got rid of Ada like a bad Christmas gift in a 72-58 win Saturday. But a rematch looms in the Division IV Wapakoneta district. That should be a treat.On the girls side, Bath, Delphos St. Johnís, Continental and Upper Scioto Valley look to be the cream of the crop. The Wildkittens have the win over the Blue Jays. It would be another feather in their cap if they can sweep through their McDonaldís Holiday Tournament.Thereís a clump of girls teams in the Northwest Conference, any one that could lay claim to elite status. At the end, itís a race between Crestview, Bluffton, Columbus Grove and Lima Central Catholic.-- Thereís plenty of difference between the haves and have-nots. The biggest Iíve seen, though, has been passing. As in, good teams know how to do it and bad teams donít seem to understand the concept.Against Kenton, the Ottawa-Glandorf boys found the open shooter with an extra pass and shot around 60 percent from the field. It was the best team performance Iíve seen in a while. There was no doubt why O-G handily won the game.-- Speaking of passes, what ever happened to the bounce pass? All too often, I see kids trying to make the above-the-head soccer pass, which always gives a defense time to adjust and make the steal.A good bounce pass, on the other hand, is difficult to steal.-- A quick note to players: Thereís this thing, attached to the basket. We like to call it a backboard. Every now and again, it might be a good idea to use it, especially down low.Itís sad, really. A bank shot is treated like a novelty. When someone banks in a jumper, some quick-witted individual will always say, ďDid he call that?Ē Ugh.The first thing I will teach my children about basketball is using the glass. Second thing, dribble with the left hand.-- I know two of my co-workers handled this debate last year, but Iím going to chime in.There needs to be a shot clock in prep basketball.Itís getting ridiculous when a team pulls the ball out to run some clock with two minutes left. In the first quarter. Yes, Iíve been through that painful experience.It doesnít need to be much. I figure 45 seconds would be fine. If a team canít run at least one set and get one quality shot in 45 seconds, then it isnít the shot clockís fault when theyíre getting drilled every night.

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