Friday, February 28, 2014

Valley's Boys' Basketball Team [14-8] Defeats Fort Dodge, 50-44, Tonight In a Substate Tournament Game At the Bill Coldiron Fieldhouse On the Valley Campus In West Des Moines. Before the Game, Valley Coach Jeff Horner Tweeted, 'Never know when it could be ur last. Lay it on the line.' The Tigers' Next Game Is At Ankeny Centennial At 7 p.m. Next Tuesday In the Substate Finale. Centennial [17-4] Crushed Ames, 75-41, Tonight.

Photo courtesy of West Des Moines Valley High School on Facebook

Retweeted by
50-44 tigers advance!

  Retweeted by
Never know when it could be ur last. Lay it on the line.

BBB Final: Jaguars win 75-41!

--Courtesy of Twitter. 


Business as usual.  The Des Moines Register did its usual bush league job of covering Valley. The paper devoted a whopping three paragraphs to last night's game in today's city edition. For a look at how much better other newspapers cover their high school teams, here's the story of last night's game that's published in today's Fort Dodge Messenger:


Fort Dodge went the final 5:26 of the second quarter without scoring a point and despite a 19-point final period, the Dodgers bowed out of tournament play with a 12-10 record, the first time since the 2010-11 season they closed the year with a winning mark.

Valley, now 14-8, plays Ankeny Centennial on Tuesday in a substate final at Ankeny High. The Jaguars advanced with a 75-41 thumping of Ames last night.

"The kids are resilient and we battled," said a dejected Dodger Coach Tom Daniel. "We just couldn't match their depth. They were running in a bunch of guys at once. When you get into the playoffs, the pressure mounts. They cranked up their defensive effort (in the 2nd period) and we got tired and started to make some mistakes.

"As a program, we can take a lot of pride in this season. The seniors should be proud. This program is in better shape after three years than it was when they got here."

Senior JC Hatcher led the Dodgers with 17 points, giving him 1,002 for his career. Fellow classmate Zach Martinson added 13, including nine in the fourth quarter.

"One silver lining is JC going over 1,000 points. That's a team thing, too. He scored a lot of points, but there was someone assisting him on a lot of shots and we had to run our offense to get him those chances to score. Everyone can take pride in that," said Daniel.

Sophomore Turner Scott led the Tigers with 16 points. He was the only Valley player in double figures. Tyus Mason and Quinton Curry added eight apiece.

Valley had beaten the Dodgers 78-65 earlier in the year, but Daniel made a defensive change and held the Tigers to just 17 field goals. However, the Tigers splashed home 12 free throws, including 10 in the fourth quarter alone.

"We wanted to come out in man and challenge them," explained Daniel. "We stayed in zone too long last game. Defensively, we held them. We just needed a play at the end and didn't come up with one. Sometimes that happens."

Despite physical play all game, the Dodgers shot just six free throws to 19 for the Tigers. Valley had a 12-4 edge in free throws made.

The Dodgers led 12-10 after the first quarter and pushed the lead to 17-13 on a three from Hatcher with 5:26 to play. That would be Fort Dodge's last points until Andrew Stover hit a shot with 7:05 left in the third quarter.

Valley closed the half with three-point shots by Mason and Scott and buckets by Scott and Tyler Williams. Williams also scored off a turnover 20 seconds into the second half and Valley led 25-17 at that point.

Stover, Blake Wilder and Hatcher each scored for the Dodgers to make it 25-23 with 4:40 in the quarter, Valley answered with a 6-0 run and it was 31-23 with 2:33 left.

After Wilder scored to make it 31-25, the Tigers reeled off six straight again and led 37-25 with one quarter to play.

Martinson then took over for the Dodgers, scoring their first seven points of the fourth period. Free throws by Stover and back-to-back buckets from Hatcher cut the lead down to 42-38.

Fort Dodge actually had the ball with a chance to get closer, but Krunal Thakor was called for a charge on a drive to the bucket with 2:09 to play.

"That was big," said Daniel. "It would have been nice to have a chance to get it down to two points at the line. We just couldn't get on the right side of the officials all night."

The Dodgers were then forced to foul and Valley made eight free throws down the stretch to match buckets from Hatcher, Martinson and Wilder.

Fort Dodge loses eight seniors off its roster. Marquan Clayton, Thakor, Cody Ellis, Hatcher, Stover, Wilder, Martinson and Cody Rivers all suited up for the final time.

"These kids elevated our program," said Daniel. "The challenge now is for the younger kids to see that it takes hard work. We can't have any excuses. We just have to find what works."

Valley 50, Fort Dodge 44

Valley Trei Mitchell 2 0-2 4, Turner Scott 5 4-4 16, Tyler Williams 3 1-2 7, Luke Umble 2 2-3 6, Quinton Curry 3 2-2 8, Tyus Mason 2 2-4 8, Anthony Holmes 0 0-0 0, Dominque Dafney 0 1-2 1, Carlo Marble 0 0-0 0. Totals 17 12-19 50.

Fort Dodge - Zach Martinson 6 0-0 13, JC Hatcher 7 0-0 17, Blake Wilder 3 0-2 6, Krunal Thakor 1 2-2 4, Andrew Stover 1 2-2 4, Kyle Beisch 0 0-0 0, Sam Kolacia 0 0-0 0, Alex Jackson 0 0-0 0. Totals 18 4-6 44.

Quarter scores: Fort Dodge led 12-10, Valley led 23-17, 37-25.

Three-point shots: Valley 4 (Scott 2, Mason 2). Fort Dodge 4 (Hatcher 3, Martinson 1).

Total fouls: Valley 11, Fort Dodge 16

Because the Des Moines Register continued its season-long [well, actually entire-school-year-long] habit of doing a lousy job of covering Valley High School's athletic program, I'm publishing every photograph I took during and after the Tigers defeated Sioux City West, 60-49, in a class 5-A girls' regional basketball tournament finale Tuesday night at Rockwell City. I published a number of photos from the game a matter of hours after it concluded, then added more the next day. The Register sent no reporter or photographer to Rockwell City to cover a No. 2-ranked Valley team that goes into next week's state tournament at Wells Fargo Arena with a 22-1 record. Yet, the paper published a number of photos of West Des Moines Dowling's regional victory Wednesday morning, then the West Des Moines Register, a sorry excuse for a paper if I ever saw one, had six more photos of Dowling's players and coaches Friday morning. There were no photos of Valley's victory either Wednesday or Friday. Horrible.

On second thought, forget what I wrote the other day about Iowa's basketball team and Twitter. You may recall that I was in full agreement with the decision of Hawkeye coach Fran McCaffery to ban the use of Twitter by his players. Furthermore, I wrote that if not sending and receiving messages on Twitter helped Iowa play better in the final weeks of the season, I would cancel my Twitter account, too. I've changed my mind. I'm staying on Twitter. I also now think that Iowa's players should resume using Twitter, too. The way they're doing now, I'd let 'em use Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, Instagram or anything else that might get 'em out of their funk. McCaffery should maybe try Twitter, too. Iowa lost its third game in succession last night, this time to an Indiana team that is trying to improve its resume for the NIT. The Hawkeyes' defense took another night off in a 93-86 loss. Someone named Will Sheehey scored a career-high 30 points for Indiana. I don't pay as much attention to teams outside of our state as I used to, but I'd never heard of Will Sheehey until I watched him make basket after basket against Iowa. I wouldn't exactly call Sheehey a no-name, but I wouldn't call him all-Big Ten either. I wrote a while back that Iowa was the second-best team in the league, and my mouth was watering when I looked at the upcoming schedule. I thought the only regular-season game the Hawkeyes would lose would be the upcoming one at Michigan State. That, of course, was before all of this Twitter crap. Before they gave up 95 points in a loss at Minnesota. Before they gave up 93 last night at Indiana. I listened to McCaffery's postgame radio comments, and he wasn't happy at all about his team's 18 turnovers. He said point guard Mike Gesell was tentative. Well, Iowa has a lot more problems than Gesell's tentativeness.. People who think they know a lot about collegiate basketball wonder if McCaffery's team is playing poorly now because it peaked too early this season--like several weeks ago. They wonder if the Hawkeyes will be able to get their game back. All I know is, I'm not giving up on them. I say let 'em get back on Twitter. I know I'm back.


I noticed that the bean-counters at the paper here--exhibiting that old classic give-up attitude--evidently didn't want to pay for a couple of tanks of
gas in the company car so a sportswriter could make the trip to Bloomington, Ind., for last night's Iowa game. The game, of course, was supposed to be played last week, but was postponed because Indiana's gym was falling apart.  At the time, so was Indiana's team. The paper had sent a guy to Bloomington for that game [which turned into a postponement], but the bean-counters, who are waiting for some sort of miraculous recovery in circulation now that a new 37-year-old editor has been hired [it's not going to happen, folks], must've told the sports editor that one trip a season to that place in the company car or the guy's own car was enough. The paper used an Associated Press account of  last night's game. The bean-counters must've noticed that the price of gas is going up, and put out a memo that said, "We surrender. We are fully aware that  Ron Maly will write about the game with his usual thoroughness and clarity,  and that the Cedar Rapids Gazette will send a sportswriter to Bloomington. Read their accounts of the game so we can save more money."  Indeed, there was a Bloomington dateline on the story Scott Dochterman of the Gazette wrote that began, "Questions are circling the Iowa men’s basketball program like sharks swimming around a sinking ship."


Here's Dochterman's entire story from the Cedar Rapids Gazette, along with the newspaper's  headlines:

Tough questions linger for Iowa, McCaffery

Hawkeyes are 'soft,' says star player following third straight loss

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — Questions are circling the Iowa men’s basketball program like sharks swimming around a sinking ship.

Where is the toughness? What’s wrong with the defense? Why all the turnovers? How does the team return to its winning ways? All of the questions are legitimate, especially in the wake of Iowa’s third straight loss, a 93-86 setback at Indiana. But before media and fans ask those questions, those inside the program are asking themselves similar questions.
Scott Dochterman

That starts with head coach Fran McCaffery.
“Maybe, I need to back off a little bit,” McCaffery said. “Because I’ve been trying to be real intense these last couple of games, and there’s a fine line between intensity that’s helpful and intensity that may  not be as productive as I’d like it to be. I need to try to look at and evaluate that.”

Iowa’s defeat at Indiana was a near carbon copy of its 95-89 loss at Minnesota on Tuesday. Both times the Hawkeyes (19-9, 8-7 Big Ten) faced a struggling opponent itching to play at a faster pace but couldn’t either get key stops on defense, or turned over the ball to slip further behind.

Minnesota crushed the Hawkeyes from the perimeter, knocking down 9 of 11 3-point attempts to score 51 points by halftime. Indiana put up 49 in the first half by breaking down Iowa in transition. Neither game did Iowa’s defense mount any resistance despite scoring 47 and 52 points, respectively, themselves.

“I think against Minnesota, that was a little worse,” Iowa guard Devyn Marble said. “Indiana is just as fast as us at getting the ball in and pushing it. We didn’t play the defense we needed to, but at the same time they were going to score points. There’s only so much you’re going to be able to do.”

Both games featured second-half stretches where Iowa seemingly was in control, only to let it slip away in a fog of turnovers, quick shots or poor execution on offense. After cutting the deficit to two at Minnesota, the Hawkeyes scored just one point over an eight-possession stretch to fall behind by 13. As they mounted a comeback, Iowa’s Gabe Olaseni twice was nailed for moving screens.

At Indiana, Iowa led 60-53 four minutes into the second half. The Hawkeyes then turned the ball over three times and were called for charging, which allowed the Hoosiers to score nine unanswered points. The most painful sequence was when Olaseni missed inside, and Indiana’s Will Sheehey quickly followed with a 3-pointer to electrify the crowd and cut the Iowa lead to two points.

“We had that one stretch, we had it right at the rim and they scored on it,” McCaffery said. “We could have gone up nine; instead it was five. Those kinds of plays seemed to keep happening to us.

“I think when we scored quickly early in the second half, that’s why we kept quick shooting the ball. When the other team’s on a run, you don’t want to quick-shoot the ball on the road.”

All the questions Iowa thought it answered with road wins at Ohio State and Illinois or a home dismantling of league leader Michigan now have reappeared, starting with the defense. Iowa has allowed its last three opponents to shoot at least 53 percent in the first half. The Hawkeyes seem a step slow in rotations, unable to limit penetration and don’t apply their usual intensity.

“We need more energy and we need more focus and concentration and get back to what we were doing that made us a top-10, top-15 team, really locking guys up, taking pride in our defense,” Iowa forward Aaron White said. “That’s slipped here in the past week or two.”

“We didn’t sprint back at the level that was necessary to stop this team (Indiana),” McCaffery said. “We were getting back, but we weren’t getting back and getting it put back together. We were back, but it wasn’t put together.”

What about the offense? Iowa committed 18 turnovers, leading to 18 Indiana points. Several times an Iowa player tried to bull through the lane like a fullback for a basket or a foul call. More often it led to turnovers.
In an uptempo game, points come and go. But the second-half lapses stunt an offense’s rhythm.

“Obviously one of the key points in this game was limit turnovers and a little too much of guys trying to make a play on their own rather than trusting the offense, trusting one another,” White said. “Not placing the blame; I’m guilty of that as well. Got to pick my spots better as well as other guys and trust one another.”

“A lot of the turnovers came at the time when we had the advantage, about to get a layup or at least an open shot,” Marble said. “We had too many turnovers in that situation.”

The most important question for this reeling team: Is it tough enough? Iowa is 1-7 in league games decided by single digits, 5-15 over the last two years. The Hawkeyes squandered an 11-point advantage at Minnesota, an 11-point lead at Wisconsin, a 15-point lead to Villanova and a 10-point lead at Iowa State. All of those losses featured unique but equally painful ways of wilting under pressure.

“It’s a little overused, but I think it’s a little relevant here,” Iowa guard Mike Gesell said of lacking mental toughness. “I think we’re just not trusting each other right now. I feel like on defense where we’re not rotating as well, we’re not getting up and pressuring guys and getting steals for run-outs like we were early in the season, and I don’t think we’re talking enough on defense. That’s one of the biggest things.”

“Obviously we’ve got to get our defense corrected and play tougher,” Marble said. “I think at times we played soft. I think until as a team we change our mental aspect in how we come into the game mentally and how we play guys and sticking to the game plan, we’re going to struggle.”

There are three games left in the regular season. The sharks continue to swim, and only the players have the harpoons. The question is, do they know how to use them?

Thursday, February 27, 2014

As far as I'm concerned, Wichita State of the Missouri Valley Conference is the best team in collegiate basketball this season, and Gregg Marshall is the best coach. People can argue with me all day, all week and all month that the Shockers don't play as tough a schedule as some other teams, and I will agree with them to a point. However, Wichita State is the only Division I team in the history of collegiate basketball to have a 30-0 record during the regular season, and that's why I think Marshall and his squad are a clear No. 1. They certainly don't deserve to be No. 2, like they are in the polls. For Marshall to coach the Shockers to 30 consecutive victories after a season in which they went to the NCAA Final Four is absolutely amazing. I don't care if a team is playing in the Missouri Valley Conference, the Big 12, in a YMCA noon league or in a pickup game at a junior high gym, it's extremely difficult, next to impossible to go 30-0. To be emotionally and physically prepared every night and every day a game is scheduled is very, very challenging. Marshaill and his Wichita State players have answered every challenge. I know there are those who say the Shockers likely wouldn't be 30-0 if Creighton was still in the Valley, but I'm not buying that either. I'd certainly like to see a Wichita State-Creighton matchup--and it may happen in the NCAA tournament--but I feel the Shockers are a better team and would do very well against Creighton if both teams were in the Valley. Speaking of the Valley, I'm not so certain that Wichita State is the best team ever to play in that historic league. I have no idea how the Shockers would do against the Cincinnati teams that played in the league when Oscar Robertson was starring for them, or how they'd fare against Maury John's Drake teams that went to three successive NCAA tournaments in 1968-69, 1969-70 and 1970-71 [finishing third in the 1969 Final Four]. That was then, this is now. Players were very good then, players are very good now. Unfortunately, those Oscar Robertson and Maury John teams will never get the chance to play Wichita State. I stand on what I say about this 2013-2014 Wichita State team. It's the best in the nation, and Gregg Marshall is the best coach in the nation. If Iowa State or Iowa don't win the national championship, I hope Wichita State does.

Gregg Marshall

Maury John
Oscar Robertson

--Photos and illustration courtesy of Google.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Valley Girls Qualify for Class 5-A State Tournament!

It's been the goal of Valley's girls' basketball team all season long to make it to the state class 5-A state tournament. Well, the Tigers have accomplished that part of the mission. In a performance that was far from being a work of art, Valley defeated Sioux City West, 60-49, in a  regional championship game tonight at Rockwell City. The victory improved the Tigers' record to 22-1 and sent them into the 5-A tournament next week at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines. Valley plays defending champion Southeast Polk [16-6] at 3:15 p.m. Wednesday, March 5. Southeast Polk beat Washington of Cedar Rapids, 79-71, in a regional final tonight at Cedar Rapids.  Early in its victory  over Sioux City West, Valley was at the top of its game. The Tigers had leads of 10-0 and 23-3 before getting careless. West closed the deficit to six points at one stage in the last half. Valley was downright sloppy at times, going through long periods when it shot poorly, passed poorly and didn't rebound well. It wasn't pretty, but that didn't bother the school's players, student managers, coaches and fans from celebrating bigtime [including cutting down the net on one of the baskets] on the Rockwell City court.

Because Valley's girls' and boys' athletic teams receive little or no coverage in the Des Moines Register,  this website is publishing the story on the Tigers' regional tournament victory that was printed in the Sioux City Journal:

Journal Staff

ROCKWELL CITY, Iowa--West Des Moines Valley's big first quarter was too much for the West girls basketball team to overcome in Tuesday's Class 5A regional final.

Second-ranked Valley rode a 23-5 first quarter to a 60-49 victory and a berth in the state tournament with a 22-1 record.

West, falling in the regional finals for the third straight season, closed a 15-7 campaign.

West senior Tanya Meyer scored 25 points in her final high school game, ending the season with a school record 493 points. She capped a career that saw her play a school-record 90 games with 1,590 career points, good for third on the city's five-player career scoring chart.

Despite the poor first quarter, West cut the deficit to 10 at the end of the third quarter and had it as close as six in the fourth quarter.

"Our girls battled and I'm very proud," said West's fourth-year coach Betsy Boetger. "We outscored them in the second half.

"I am very proud of the way they battle, our girls did not give up, we got down and they continued to fight."

Madi Agey, a 5-7 senior guard, scored 21 points for the Tigers while Kasey Feldt, a 5-10 senior, tallied 15 and Grace Vander Weide 11.

WEST (49)

Amanda Gors 1 0-0 2, Rachel Knutson-Kobold 4 2-7 10, Sammie Birkes 0 0-0 0, Cassie Geopfert 2 1-4 6, Tanya Meyer 8 7-8 25, Serenity Sibley 0 0-0 0, Maddy Casillas 0 0-0 0, Sky Silvas 0 0-0 0, Madi Jensen 3 0-0 6, Tonya Gonzalez 0 0-0 0. Totals 18 10-19 49.

W.D.M . VALLEY (60)

Madi Agey 6 9-11 21, Whitney Fuller 0 1-2 1, Grace Vander Weide 4 2-3 11, Hannah Fuller 0 5-7 5, Kasey Feldt 7 1-2 15, Taylor Steil 0 0-0 0, Courtney Carr 2 0-0 4, Lexi Merritt 1 0-0 3. Totals 20 18-25 60.

West 5 17 16 11 -- 49
Valley 23 11 14 12 -- 60

Three-point goals -- West 3 (Meyer 2, Geopfert), Valley 2 (Vander Weide, Merritt). Fouled out -- Geopfert. Rebounds -- West 36 (Knutson-Kobold 10), Valley 35. Turnovers -- West 23, Valley 9. Total fouls -- West 21, Valley 14.

The Apple Lady

I was sorry to learn of the death of 75-year-old Nadine Albrecht of Cedar Rapids. 

Nadine and her late husband, Chuck, were longtime friends of ours who owned and managed a huge apple orchard on Ashworth Road in West Des Moines for many years. 

There were also a couple of cherry trees at the place, and I can recall picking apples and cherries a time or two.

As far as I know, I haven't picked apples or cherries since.
Nadine and Chuck lived on the property,  and it was the site of many Fourth of July picnics, wild-game dinners, Sunday afternoons when Chuck spent a half-hour chasing a greased hog, and who-knows-what-else.

Chuck raised honeybees, had a couple of antique sports cars he said he planned to restore, had some old gas pumps he said he planned to do something with, and both he and Nadine always had a smile and a hug whenever someone stopped by.

Fun-loving folks, that's what Chuck and Nadine Albrecht were. 
Nadine Albrecht

Here's a copy of what I wrote on the website where Nadine's obituary appears:

 Ron and Maxine Maly were very saddened when they learned of Nadine's death. We were longtime friends of Nadine and Chuck in their "Apple Orchard" days in West Des Moines. We picked plenty of apples and cherries at that wonderful place on Ashworth Road, and we enjoyed the company of Nadine and Chuck at July 4 celebrations, fall picnics, spring picnics, summer picnics and even winter picnics. Heck, every day was a picnic with Nadine and Chuck. Our best to Scott, Todd, Troy and their families. We share in your sorrow.

Scott, Todd and Troy are the Albrechts' sons. Nadine spent her final years in Cedar Rapids, probably because Troy is in business in nearby Marion.

It was a shock to me, and presumably to many others who knew Nadine and Chuck when they divorced several years ago.  

Chuck moved to Omaha, then back to West Des Moines, where he died a couple of years ago.

We last time we saw Nadine was in Cedar Rapids. We were there to visit my sister-in-law, and I picked up Nadine at her apartment on the southeast side for a lunch the women had planned.

The best part of that day, as well as the days that followed, was that Miquie, my sister-in-law, talked Nadine into going to church a couple of times in Cedar Rapids. 

Nadine had no car, so Miquie picked her up and drove her to church and drove her back home.

It was Miquie who called last night to say she saw Nadine's obituary in the Gazette.

The last time we saw Chuck was when he stopped by our home  to have me sign a copy of my second [of three]  Tales from the Iowa Sidelines books that he had purchased. 

We drank a lot of coffee that night, re-living the old days.

We miss Nadine and Chuck, and we're going to make every effort to get to Nadine's celebration of life Saturday at The Tavern II in West Des Moines.

That's the kind of place Nadine and Chuck liked.

Following is a copy of the obituary that appeared at and in the Cedar Rapids Gazette

As far as I know, the obituary hasn't appeared in the paper here yet, hopefully  not just because of the shockingly-high prices the paper charges families for obits these days. 

I guess the paper's management figures the product is so lousy now that it can't make any money from subscriptions, so it makes subscribers [and non-subscribers] pay an arm and a leg to print an obit.


Cedar Rapids

Nadine Erliss Rauhauser Albrecht, 75, passed away suddenly in Cedar Rapids on Feb. 19, 2014. A Celebration of Life will be Saturday, March 1, from 2 to 5 p.m. at The Tavern II Pizza and Pasta Grill, 1755 50th St., West Des Moines.

Nadine was born June 19, 1938, in Faribault, Minn. She worked at Iowa Realty in Panora, Iowa. Friends may remember Nadine as "The Apple Lady" of Valley Orchard on Ashworth Road in West Des Moines.

Nadine was preceded in death by Charles Albrecht.

She is survived by three children, Scott (Wendy), Todd (Lori) and Troy (Geri) Albrecht; grandchildren, Dylan, Keanan, Braeden, Delaney, Jonah and Hollis; and siblings, Naomi John- son and William Rauhauser. 

A lifelong Democrat, Nadine enjoyed spending time with her grandchildren, painting, and was often seen with a glass of wine, enjoying social gatherings.

Memorial contributions may be made to the American Diabetes Association ( 

Please leave a message or tribute to Nadine's family on the web page, www. under Obituaries.

Monday, February 24, 2014

I feel better. I had my 2-mile indoor walk, then noticed it was snowing [for at least the 368th time this winter] when I left the mall. It wasn't the snow that made me feel better. It was the walk, and what I was thinking about. I mean, I gave more thought to the decision Hawkeye basketball coach Fran McCaffery made today to ban the use of Twitter by his players. You may think the players' rights are being violated, but not me. Indeed, if Iowa starts winning now that McCaffery is keeping his players off Twitter, I'm going to consider canceling my Twitter account, too. Maybe staying off Twitter will also keep me from having any problems the rest of the season.

Iowa basketball coach Fran McCaffery has told his players to shut down their Twitter accounts until the season is over. I'm sure this move will solve all of the Hawkeyes' problems. They have lost three of their last four games at Carver-Hawkeye Arena, and now that Twitter will no longer be a part of the players' lives, I am certain the team will get things turned around on the home court. For all I know, not having to think about their tweets [either coming in or going out] may enable the team to also play better on the road. I am even confident the players' Twitter inactivity will have a trickle-down affect on the coaches. I'm betting the coaches, knowing Twitter is not corrupting the minds of anyone on the team, will now give the players better advice on what to do on both offense and defense when games are decided in the last 2 minutes. I'm expecting instant improvement now that this major decision about this terrible thing known as Twitter has been made. If for some reason telling the players to shut down their Twitter accounts doesn't improve the Hawkeyes' ability to win games, I expect the next move will be to keep them away from Facebook, e-mail and cell phones, too.