2009 Festival of Teams Preview

12 of the 18 17U teams in this week's Festival of Teams are making the trip to Iowa from Minnesota. Here's a look at what I expect from the weekend in Iowa. Schedules for the weekend can be found here.

Pool A: This Speice Mo-Kan Elite team may have one of the top 2012 players in the country in Perry Elllis. 94 Ft of Game and EOTO are the competition here so I'll take Mo-Kan.

Pool B: Magic Black and the MN Heat Elite should be a good matchup for the pool title in this one. I think the Heat's size will be too much. Paul Franklin (Heat) and Deron Murphy (Black) is a good matchup of guards, but expect Franklin to guard Franklin (Walter to guard Paul that is)

Pool C: Weak pool with Comets-Blue and the 2nd All Iowa Attack Team.

Pool D: Minnesota Pump N Run is the clear favorite here with MSB also in the pool.

Pool E: Harrison Barnes' All Iowa Attack Red team is here. MN Fury Gold is also in the pool.

Pool F: The MN Fury Elite squad is my pick here. MN Heat Select team is here also. With Trey Scott, their game vs Fury might be interesting.

Bracket matchups. The winners of pools E and F get 1 less game to move to the championship. Possible Semifinal matchup of Speice Mo-Kan vs MN Pump N Run sticks out with Fury Elite vs Barnes in the other semi. That makes for all kinds of good finals possibilities. And if you're into summer politics, how about a possible quarterfinal matchup of Magic Black vs MN Pump N Run. The kids probably won't make an issue of it, but for those of us who write it gives us material.

Good Minnesota teams spread all around the bracket here. MN Heat Elite are in pool A but with Speice Mo-Kan. Pool C has Wear Out The Net vs Magic Elite-Garvis in an interesting matchup. TC Elite will have their hands full with All Iowa Attack Black in Pool D. MN Heat Black and MSB are in Pool E with All Iowa Attack Red in a nice pool. EOTO and Magic Elite-Culp are in Pool F. Magic Culp looking to rebound from a rough weekend at the Sabes last week. Pool G has the 2nd Comets 16U team and Wizard's Den vs MN Pump N Run in an all Minnesota pool. Fury Gold is in Pool H.

The brackets are a straight 8 team bracket. All the 1st, 2nd and 3rd place finishers get their own bracket. Interesting semifinal possibility of MN Pump N Run vs All Iowa Attack Red. The MN Heat Elite could get another shot at Wear Out The Net in the semis. WOTN blew out the Heat in the Pump N Run semis at the end of April with the Heat down to 3 guys at the end. I'm rooting for a Pump N Run vs Heat Elite matchup in the finals and not just because of the Alex Richter connection.

The top MN Suns team is in pool A. Heat Select look to have a decent shot to come out of Pool B. MN Southside resides in Pool C with MN Heat Elite in Pool D. Net Gain's 15U team is in Pool E. 43 Hoops in Pool F. Pool G has a great pool matchup of MN Static vs MN Pump N Run. Winning the pool means 1 less game to the championship. MN Heat Elite vs 43 Hoops is a good potential quarterfinal game with the winner possibly having a shot at Pump N Run or the Static.

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