November 6, 2007

Boilermaker hoops notebook

Most major college basketball programs open the season with a pair of exhibition games. But they don't have to.

The NCAA gives schools the option of conducting as many as two preseason events, with the two options being exhibition games - generally against traveling club teams or tiny college programs - or closed scrimmages against other schools.

The NCAA has allowed these controlled scrimmages since 1999, but you don't hear much about them, because they're not a common "practice" and they're required to be conducted outside the public's eye.

The rules say these sessions must be closed to everyone beside those necessary to operating them, and so they're rarely talked about and their results - if there are any - aren't publicized. In fact, it's against the rules to publicize them.

In the Big Ten, new Iowa coach Todd Lickliter has scheduled one such scrimmage, while also lining up an exhibition, in which his team beat Simpson.

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