Fran Fraschilla says Big 12 on rise

by Mel Bracht Published: December 18, 2009
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In his new ESPN assignment, college basketball analyst Fran Fraschilla will rack up frequent-flyer miles as he covers Wednesday night Big East games and appears in ESPN studio in Bristol, Conn., Thursday nights.

But Fraschilla, a Dallas resident, still will team with Ron Franklin to do his share of games involving Big 12 teams, including the All-College Classic on ESPN2 Monday night. OU faces UTEP at 5:30 p.m., followed by OSU vs. LaSalle at about 8 p.m. at the Ford Center.

"It’s bittersweet for me, but professionally I’m excited about having my hand in both leagues, because I’ll get a chance to really see two of the four best leagues in college basketball on a regular basis,” said Fraschilla, a former coach at Manhattan, St. John’s and New Mexico. "We’ll certainly miss the caravan as we caravanned around the Big 12 on Monday.”

Fraschilla is excited about the Big 12, which he said could place as many as six teams in the NCAA Tournament and nine teams in postseason play.

"I think it’s fair to say there are more quality teams coming up from the bottom of the league than maybe at any time in the history of the league. What’s happened in the last three or four years is schools have hired some excellent young coaches who are energetic recruiters.”

Of ESPN’s top 25 2009 recruiting classes, he noted six were from the Big 12.


by Mel Bracht
Copy Editor, Sports Media
Mel Bracht is a copy editor on the presentation desk and also covers sports media. A 1978 graduate of Indiana University, Bracht has been a print journalist for 34 years. He started his career as sports editor of the Rensselaer (Ind.) Republican...
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