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Old 03-03-2014, 12:50 PM   #1 (permalink)
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The Canadian College Basketball Dynasty You’ve Never Heard Of

It might not surprise you to learn that the best college basketball team in Canada plays its home games before crowds of about 500 people, in a gym almost as nice as the one at your nearest suburban high school, on a campus filled with students who don’t much care how or when their team plays. Nor might you be surprised to learn they warm up to Drake, that their concession stand is a Tim Hortons, or that their sports information director is a part-time hockey coach who readily admits, “I really don’t know much about basketball.”

But here’s what might come as a surprise: The Carleton University Ravens are good. Not just “good for a Canadian school,” but really, legitimately good. They have a point guard who would start for most any team in America and a big man who drop-steps more beautifully than most players dunk. They scored 95 in an exhibition win over Wisconsin, 10 more points than any team has scored on the Badgers all year.1 They hung with Cincinnati on its home floor, beat TCU and Towson by 26 apiece, and they took Syracuse to overtime, playing the Orange tougher than most of the ACC.2

As for how they’ve fared against Canadian competition, Carleton won last year’s national championship game by 50 points. It was their ninth title in 11 years. Yes, the Ravens lost the equivalent of their conference championship game Saturday — on a buzzer-beater, no less — ending their 55-game winning streak against Canadian competition. But it says something that even if the Ravens go on to earn their 10th title in 12 years, 2014 will go down in Canadian basketball history primarily as “the year Carleton lost a game to Ottawa.”

The Canadian College Basketball Dynasty You?ve Never Heard Of
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