Watch out for Jim Hayford and the Eagles. They are positioned to become one of the powerhouses of the expanded Big Sky conference in basketball.
Crawford pointed at four programs in the Big Sky that will likely dominate the conference for years to come, and I can't say that I disagree: Montana, Weber State, Eastern Washington and Portland.
If that scenario becomes reality, Eastern fans can thank the administration for hiring a local hero, Jim Hayford. After tasting tons of success at the D-III level with Whitworth, Hayford is slowly but surely rebuilding the Eagles' program, not to mention their confidence.
I've met Hayford. I've seen him speak. Not only is his basketball IQ high, but his personality is engaging and intriguing. He is a perfect coach at the Big Sky level, and I – like Crawford – expect him to have continued success with supporters, donors and players alike.
Here's to another – even better – college basketball season in Cheney.