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Cracker’s Front Range League Hoops opened last night

November 22, 2012

Lots of intrigue this year for the 6 D-1 Front Range schools. Colorado State is back to defend their crown which they won last season with a 6-1 record. I wish they’d formalize this but since they don’t, I am the league commissioner and sole judge of who the league winner is. Im thinking of sending some kind of trophy at the end of the season to the winning coach. Maybe a Salma Hayek poster and a cheese ball.

Early season power rankings would look something like this:

1. Colorado (4-0, 0-0) – The Buffs opened the season with an impressive tournament championship in Charleston, recording wins over Dayton, Baylor, and Murray State. They have moved into the AP national rankings for the first time in years. A solid returning core of players include Andre ROberson, Spencer Dinwiddie, and the much improved Askia Booker and they’ve been joined by a pair of talented freshmen in big man Josh Scott and wing Xavier Johnson. The Buffs open their Cracker League schedule on Sunday as they host Air Force.

2. Colorado State (3-0, 1-0) – The Rams look keen to defend their crown as they opened with a road win over Denver. The senior core of Greg Smith, Pierce Hornung, Wes Eikmeier, and Dorian Green have been joined by transfer big Colton Iverson and the Rams have been transformed by new head coach Larry Eustachy into a rugged defense first and rebounding juggernaut.

3. Denver (1-3, 0-1) – Don’t be fooled by their early season record as the Pioneers have opened with a very difficult schedule that only gets more difficult with road games at Southern Miss and Stanford. They have a nice core of starters in Chris Udofia, Brett Olson, Royce O’Neale, and Chase Hallam but are struggling to find the needed help off the bench. The Pioneers only play one more CFRL game this year at Wyoming so they are up against the 8-ball after losing at home to CSU.

4. Wyoming (5-0, 1-0) – The Cowpokeys moved into a tie at the top as they won their league opener in Greeley over Northern Colorado. Jcintherock favorite Derrious Gilmore scored 24 points to lead the Pokes. They are led by Gilmore, senior power forward Leonard Washington and perimeter scoring specialist Luke Martinez and are supported by a lot of freshmen and sophomores with limited experience.

5. Air Force (5-0, 0-0) – The Falcons have opened with some solid wins both home and away, albeit against some weak competition. They start 5 seniors who have lots of experience between them, the best of which is athletic wing Mike Lyons. The Flyboys will get a chance to make a statement as they visit Boulder on Sunday to play the Mighty Buffs. This game went to OT last year in Colorado Springs.

6. Northern Colorado (1-2, 0-1) – The Bears are up against it this year. Young talent that is expected to compete in the top half of the Big Sky this year but completely overmatched against fellow CFRL foes. They played Wyoming close for 30 minutes before succumbing to the Pokes size and strength. Theyll get their chance to pull off a monumental upset when they visit Fort Collins on Monday.

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