College Basketball Nation: David Sobolewski

EVANSTON, Ill. -- Once the question began to unfold, Northwestern Wildcats sophomore point guard David Sobolewski began shaking his head in disapproval.

His squad had just been routed on its home floor Tuesday, losing 77-57 to the Maryland Terrapins in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. The query was whether Northwestern’s loss was anything more significant than an early-season defeat, considering the Terps were the first major-conference opponent the Wildcats had faced after starting the season 6-0.

Sobolewski jumped on the question as soon as it was finished.

“No, it wasn’t,” Sobolewski said. “It was a November game against an ACC team. It’s not the end of the season. We got a lot of work to do for sure, but we’re not going to stop working. If anything, this will make us hungrier to improve in practice. So it was nothing more than a loss in November.”

Some would debate that.

Whether the Wildcats like it, the question that will be associated with them from November until March is whether they are an NCAA tournament-caliber team. They’ve never been to the tournament ... and that, more than ever, is the measuring stick for the program after four consecutive NIT appearances. The question won’t disappear until the goal of an NCAA tourney berth is realized.

From that standpoint, Northwestern didn’t look much tournament team on Tuesday. The Wildcats were outscored 49-31 in the second half and outrebounded 42-15, shot 6-of-25 from the 3-point range and allowed 44 points in the paint. And their bench was outscored 23-7.

For Scott Powers' full column on, click here.
In the world of basketball recruiting, when a player can waver for years on end (and sometimes, miraculously, even after he's donned the cap of one of his final two suitors) sometimes it's nice to see someone super-psyched about accepting an offer as soon as they get it. It's even nicer when that program isn't one of college hoops' historical powers. Today, instead, it's Northwestern.

David Sobolewski, a senior guard from Benet Academy in the western suburbs of Chicago, accepted an offer from Northwestern coach Bill Carmody Sunday. The offer came quickly: Carmody watched Sobolweski play on Friday, extended the offer Sunday, and by the end of the day the guard had committed. He seems just as excited as you'd imagine:
"The second time I had visited, coach [Tavaras] Hardy kind of told me that it was Northwestern policy that coach Carmody likes to see players before he offers them," said Sobolewski, a 6-foot-1 combo guard. "I had a good tournament in Highland, Ind., this weekend, and coach Carmody was there. It was a no-brainer for me when they offered. It feels even better because it's where I wanted to go. I didn't make a decision to make a decision."

There isn't much recruiting info available on Sobolewski; he's not exactly a blue-chipper. But his positional versatility should fit nicely into Carmody's uptempo, flexible Princeton system. At the very least, Sobolewski seems totally stoked to be at Northwestern, and not just because the Cats might make their first-ever NCAA tournament appearance in 2010. That's a plus, too.