The Charlotte 49ers play Fordham at Fordham Saturday. Although there are two major stories coming up the next two weeks -- the Super Bowl this Sunday and Daytona 500 festivities this week and next -- the 49ers are becoming a good story.
I loved watching their last two games, close victories against Temple and George Washington, at Halton Arena. In the former it was the virtuoso Derrio Green lifting Charlotte. In the latter it was junior forward Shamari Spears.
I've heard Spears invoke Charles Barkley. But his game reminded me of Larry Johnson. He doesn't have Johnson's quickness; few big men do. He's powerful, though. And his spin moves inside work against opponents six inches taller. He also hit fadeaways and added two three-pointers. And when a skinny George Washington forward tried to throw him off his game with a cheap shot, Spears ignored him.
DiJuan Harris runs the show, Phil Jones hits clutch shots and Charles Dewhurst apparently is the world's best rebounding guard.
I don't yet know, in the grand scheme, how good the 49ers are. But they look good to me. I like their poise and their bravado, and, man, they are fun to watch.