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Based in Atlanta, GA - Rick Limpert is an award-winning writer, a best-selling author, and a featured sports travel writer.

Named the No. 1 Sports Technology writer in the U.S. on Oct 1, 2014.

Entries in Basketball (24)


How the Loyola-Chicago Offense Scores

And they will need to do some scoring on Saturday night.

Loyola-Chicago’s ball screen heavy offensive attack has created high percentage shots and propelled the team to two NCAA Tournament upsets.

Loyola-Chicago became a darling of the 2018 NCAA Tournament, pulling off upsets as an 11-seed in the first two rounds over #6 Miami and #3 Tennessee, both in dramatic fashion. A main reason Coach Porter Moser’s squad was able to defeat these higher seeded and high major opponents is the team’s ability to consistently get open shots on the offensive end.

The Ramblers typically start their offense with a ball screen action to force the defense to provide help. What makes their offense special is that they attack the help to get open shots, doing so by making the extra pass and getting the ball in the paint. If a player does not have a good shot, he is ready and willing to give the ball up or create for teammate.  This mindset has resulted in assists on 36 of 48 field goals and a 48% shooting percentage in the first two tournament games.

Look at some of the ball screen sets Loyola-Chicago uses to initiate its offense. Click on a play to download it to your FastDraw library.

DHO PNR Double – The Ramblers set up this ball screen action with a dribble handoff for 2, who then dribbles off the double ball screen from 4 and 5 to the other side of the floor. By having 1 in the corner, this puts x1 (usually the smallest defender) in a position to provide help on 5 rolling to the basket. If 5 isn’t available, 2 can reverse the ball back up top to 4 to create a play.

Elbow PNR – Loyola runs this elbow action to get its 4 the ball to attack in a middle ball screen. The 1 passes to 4 at the elbow then screens for 3. 3 cuts to the weak side leaving 1 as the only player on the right side of the floor, forcing his defender to provide help on 5 rolling to the basket. 4 looks to create a shot for himself, pass to 5 on the roll to the basket or hit 1 filling behind the play on the wing. If 1 gets the ball he can look at 5 in the post or create a shot off the dribble.

Rub PNR Advance – In this play the Ramblers use the advance pass out of the pick & roll to quickly get the ball to the other side of the floor. This forces x5 to have to rotate back to his man after providing help on the ball screen. This is especially effective against a hard hedge on the ball screen because x5 has to cover more distance. If the passes are quick, x5 will have difficulty getting back to 5 who is cutting to the basket.

DHO PNR Slip – After their opponents have gotten used to them running multiple ball screen sets, the Ramblers use this play to slip the ball screen for any easy basket at the rim. x5 provides help on the ball screen as 5 slips the screen and cuts to the basket. 3 sets a flare screen for 4  to occupy the help defenders on the weak side of the floor.

You can see more on


March Madness Good for CBS

CBS dominated Friday with the second night of NCAA hoops tournament play; 3-hour coverage scored a 1.2 demo rating and 4.46 million viewers. Early morning stats showed a 10% drop from 8-11 PM in metered market household ratings compared to year ago, but those very early stats are subject to significant adjustments later in day.

The shocking game that did not air on CBS didn’t help the numbers, as TNT showed 16th-seeded University of Maryland-Baltimore County’s win over top-seeded Virginia.

Upsets may be good for the moment, but can hurt ratings in the next rounds when the Blue Bloods are eliminated.


Kindle Pick of the Week: Called for Traveling

If you the life of every professional athlete is glamorous?

Called for Traveling is a pro basketball journey that spans four continents, seven countries and twelve teams over eleven hilarious and adventurous years. After playing his college ball at Penn State, Tyler Smith had a path in mind of where he wanted his pro basketball career to lead. Bringing his own toilet paper to away games, courts made of concrete, and fully-geared riot police at every stadium were not part of his original dream.

Smith played basketball professionally for twelve teams in seven countries including Italy, China, Japan, Argentina, and Thailand over eleven seasons. He played college ball at Penn State, reaching the Sweet 16 in 2001.

His new book Called for Traveling (Sports Publishing, October 2017) is a hilarious adventure across the world of international basketball with stories about players and coaches he encountered including Yao Ming, Joe Bryant (Kobe’s dad), Rick Barry, Carlos Boozer, and Jawad Williams.

Where were all the big contracts people talked about? Would he even have a job next season—or next week? And would he be playing for free this month because the team didn’t feel like paying him? You immeditely feel like you know Smith and even put yourself in his place.

In this highly unstable and unorthodox overseas lifestyle as professional basketball player, Smith draws readers in quickly with his humor and ability to share his clever stories that seem outrageous, but are 100 percent true. His attitude and faith are tested relentlessly through bounced paychecks, injuries, and the seemingly endless frustrating reality of people around him speaking a language he could not understand.

From Italy to Japan to Uruguay, and even the NBA, the challenges and adventures only accelerate as Tyler’s wife and kids are added to the overseas equation. His unique story is highly engaging whether or not you’re a basketball junkie. Called for Traveling is an honest and entertaining inside look at one man’s journey playing pro basketball around the world.

Download the Kindle version now, and order yourself a copy.


Overseas Elite 3-Peats at TBT

In the most memorable championship game of The Basketball Tournament yet, the heavily-favored Overseas Elite defeated this year’s Cinderella team, Team Challenge ALS, to win their third straight TBT crown and the $2 million prize. Team Challenge ALS had a shot to tie the game, but Kevinn Pinkney missed a tough three as time expired. Kyle Fogg led Overseas Elite with a game-high 29 points en route to his second consecutive MVP award.

With the win, Overseas Elite has now banked $5 million from just three summers of competition, and will be eager to defend their title next year.

Full recap, box score and video highlights for tonight’s game is available at


TBT Finals are Set

$2 Million at stake. Overseas Elite vs. Team Challenge ALS. 7pm eastern, Thursday, live on ESPN.

Team Challenge ALS – playing to raise money for Pete Frates and the ALS Foundation – upset OSU alumni Scarlet & Gray in double overtime. Austin Daye, Casper Ware and Sean Marshall combined for 61 points in the win. They will take on back-to-back champions Overseas Elite who defeated Syracuse alumni Boeheim’s Army behind 18 points from Errick McCollum II. The championship game tips off Thursday, August 3 at 7PM on ESPN.

Full recaps, box scores and video highlights for today’s games are available at