There has been plenty of weeping and gnashing of teeth surrounding the loss of College Football games since the Ed O’Bannon lawsuit exposed the NCAA and its game makers as the grifters they are. Way before the very profitable College Football shut down, the much less viable NCAA Basketball games met their end a few years earlier as 2K Sports decided to focus on their (at the time) highly rated NBA 2K series and EA Sports realized they had to defend their long lasting NBA Live turf. 2K dropped the game after 2K8 and EA followed suit in 2010. Still, just like College Football, folks at sites like Operation Sports dedicate themselves yearly to updating rosters so folks can still get their college sports fix until that inevitable day where players can bargain collectively for their likenesses to be included in future games. To ape Steven’s series and SBN’s Ricky O’Donnell, I am going through College Hoops 2K8 on the X-Box 360 with State’s most recent roster simulating an approximation of our past season to see what the game offers us. I will be recruiting manually but simulating game play (that is at least until the ACC/NCAA tournys where I’m going to actively try to win us something we haven;t had in over 30 years).
(Note: all pictures taken from JEOHankins2’s personal device on his own XBox 360 & copy of College Hoops 2K8)
-The downloaded rosters are based on the 19-20 season but I had to cut Harris then redshirt Allen, Seabron & Taylor. Renamed James Johnson and Roy Roberson as our assistants to Kevin Keatts (like reading a Stan Lee comic with all that alliteration). As well as named/edited the HCs of all our major opponents.
-Some adjustments also included changing our style of play to match the pressing, fast break oriented style Keatts chooses to run.
-Had to make some adjustments as there were such things as DJF being listed as a 6’5 SF, Bates blocking prowess criminally low and Hellems rated as the 12th best player on the team. Also, some player designs were just...really off. This and other adjustments ultimately made the team better but not in an egregious way.
-The game allows you to do conference realignment BUT only allows you to swap teams and not add/subtract teams. So I got rid of Maryland (you’re welcome) and replaced them with Louisville (of the Big East at the time).
-In order to make our schedule as close to what we saw this year I added ND, Cuse and Pitt as non-conference games as well as Memphis, Auburn, and Wisconsin (along with other tomato cans from this year) soo...yeah we won’t be left out of the NCAAs due to strength of schedule or anything of the sort...
-Similar to NCAA Football the game uses a weekly point system. EXCEPT in College Hoops the points actually correlate to whether you email a recruit, call them, visit them at home, scout a game, schedule a campus visit etc. The more time/points you spend the higher their interest can grow.
-Coaches are rated on their strength in these areas (based on letter grades for scouting, charisma etc) and assigned points for their recruiting tasks that week. You’d want a coach with high charisma to visit a recruit but one with high scouting to um...scout.
-With 5 schollys available, I started the season off offering one 5* guard, two 4* guards,one 4* Wing and one 3* Center...and despite having 100% interest from two of them...they all signed elsewhere in the early signing period. (For the life of me, my number 1 target Waitari Guy pictured above should’ve been a Wolfpack lock, but UVA swept in and got him to play snail ball). So now I’ve had to scramble to catch up with some guys I was late on (may need a dose of JUNE here). My current offers are to two 5* PG, one 5* SG, and two forwards a 4* and a 3* but these recruitments will last all season.
-Also unlike College Football, the game lets you start to scout freshmen/sophomores and recruit juniors. So a ton are out there I’ve scouted but can’t offer until the end of the season.
-So if there isn’t anything more NC State than these OOC results. State is currently 7-3 with its best win @ #21 Memphis where DJF went for 20 pts, 7 boards a 6(!) blocks. Daniels and Hellems also scored in double figures while Bryce led the team in boards.
- GREAT resume win sure...but of course it came directly AFTER our worst loss...an inexplicable 91-66 home loss to FIU where we shot 44% and turned the ball over 23 times while FIU shot 55% with 5 guys in double figures...FIU is currently 4-9 right now so this one will sting in March. As a consolation our only other losses are @Auburn and @ #24 ‘Cuse both already with double digit wins.
-RPI isn’t available yet but we rank 5th in the ACC, 33rd in NCAA in Off Efficiency (which is misspelled on the game) and 12th, 287th respectively in Def Efficiency. Feeling real worst-case scenario Mark Gottfried-ish here right now
-Bryce & DJF lead us in scoring at around 16-17 points a game, DJF also leads in boards/blocks. Markell leads in steals & assists. Bev is having a rough year with 3.5 TOs a game and Bates is shooting 32% from the field...which is going to make me go take a look at his shot chart to see why he isn’t just only dunking the ball. As of right now everyone’s “confidence” is over 80% meaning they are content in their role and playing time so no one needs an extra scoop of ice cream from Keatts through a “pep talk” right now.
The first 8 games of conference play! Start of 16 game ACC schedule with back to back road trips to #4 Chapel Hill and #17 Clemson then an 11-1 The U at home.