The value of early tournaments
Maui, Coaches vs. Cancer and more provide key lessons for March 2010
This column appears in the December 14, 2009 issue of ESPN The Magazine. To access Jay Bilas' regularly updated blog, please go here.
Years ago, before computer ratings and "bodies of work" became the obsession of the NCAA Tournament selection committee, life was simpler for college basketball coaches: Succeed in conference play, you get an invite to the Dance. So savvy coaches prepared their teams for the games that mattered by arranging tough early slates.
To read more about Bilas' take on early season tournaments -- including thoughts from Tom Izzo and Coach K -- you must be an ESPN Insider.