Upcoming 2016 NASCAR Season Schedule Magnets

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NASCAR Cars on the Track!

NASCAR recently released the schedule for 2016 and even though the 2015 NASCAR season isn’t quite over with, many are looking forward to next year and hopefully a better performance.

The 2016 NASCAR Schedule Magnet only has a few changes from the 2015 NASCAR Schedule Magnet, most notably in the middle of the season: Richmond’s April race is switching to a day-time race instead of the traditional night-time race, & Dover’s typical early-June race is pushed back into mid-May because of how the schedule goes with the new off-weekend in June that the drivers get.

This is, of course, good for the drivers, but that means the avid fans will have to find something else to do during that June weekend. The other change is to the August Michigan race, which is pushed back to the end of August because of changes to the schedule NASCAR had to make because of NBC’s coverage of the 2016 Olympic Games. The August off-weekend will now be in the middle of August instead of at the end; it essentially appears that the off-weekend and the Michigan race traded places.

The Chase portion of the schedule stays the same, no additions or substitutions this year, so fans that have been clamoring for a road course in The Chase will have to wait a while longer. NASCAR fans can take consolation that NASCAR has at least been discussing the possibility of adding a road course.

So who can we possibly see shine next season? While it can be difficult to tell from one race to another, looking at the current season can give us an indication of who should do well. We didn’t really have any flukes as to who made it into The Chase, so all the current Chase drivers should do well again next season.

We won’t see Jeff Gordon again next season, since he is retiring, but his replacement driver, Chase Elliott, is expected to do very well. Will he be the next Jeff Gordon? Chase Elliott may or may not move up and do great right off the bat, but with the talent this young driver has and the equipment, he’s sure to be a force to be reckoned with in his time in the Cup series.

Here’s the 2016 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Schedule (available for your custom logo on your own 2016 NASCAR Schedule Magnets, beginning in late-December 2015/early January 2016)

Feb. 13 – Sprint Unlimited (Daytona International Speedway)

Feb. 21 – Daytona 500

Feb. 28 – Atlanta Motor Speedway

March 6 – Las Vegas Motor Speedway

March 13 – Phoenix International Raceway

March 20 – Auto Club Speedway (Fontana, Calif.)

April 3 – Martinsville Speedway

April 9 – Texas Motor Speedway

April 17 – Bristol Motor Speedway

April 24 – Richmond International Raceway

May 1 – Talladega Superspeedway

May 7 – Kansas Speedway

May 15 – Dover International Speedway

May 21 – NASCAR All-Star Race (Charlotte Motor Speedway)

May 29 – Charlotte Motor Speedway

June 5 – Pocono Raceway

June 12 – Michigan International Speedway

June 26 – Sonoma Raceway

July 2 – Daytona International Speedway

July 9 – Kentucky Speedway

July 17 – New Hampshire Motor Speedway

July 24 – Indianapolis Motor Speedway

July 31 – Pocono Raceway

Aug. 7 – Watkins Glen International

Aug. 20 – Bristol Motor Speedway

Aug. 28 – Michigan International Speedway

Sept. 4 – Darlington Raceway

Sept. 10 – Richmond International Raceway

Sept. 18 – Chicagoland Speedway

Sept. 25 – New Hampshire Motor Speedway

Oct. 2 – Dover International Speedway

Oct. 8 – Charlotte Motor Speedway

Oct. 16 – Kansas Speedway

Oct. 23 – Talladega Superspeedway

Oct. 30 – Martinsville Speedway

Nov. 6 – Texas Motor Speedway

Nov. 13 – Phoenix International Raceway

Nov. 20 – Homestead-Miami Speedway

Preview of 2015-2016 NCAA College Basketball Season

When all was said and done last year, it wasn’t the team of freshmen, University of Kentucky, that cut down the final net, but the team led by a freshman in Duke and Jahlil Okafor.

Blue Devils head coach Mike Krzyzewski snagged his fifth NCAA division 1 championship and the prestigious accomplishment of being the winningest Division 1 coach ever.  It proved to be a resilient year for the Blue Devils, who bested the nation’s sensation Kentucky Wildcats, and their two team squadron, in a final four match up that should be on ESPN classic for years to come.

But what can we take from last year’s exciting season and translate to this upcoming year?

Recruit me so I know it’s real

John Calipari just doesn’t give up. When he doesn’t win the championship, and then almost his whole team gets drafted in the first round, he goes back out there and recruits another starting five whose only criticism is that they’re too dominant.

Expect another title-run out of the mastermind named Calipari. In the last ten years since the NBA adopted the one-and-done rule, Calipari has had 30+ win seasons in seven of them. With a fully loaded lineup that contains 4 of the top 50 recruits for 2015, expect the Kentucky Wildcats to make waves this year.

Not so fast, Wildcats

Duke had an outstanding offseason recruiting, nabbing 4 of the top 25 high schoolers – no doubt thanks in part to their recent championship.

When hasn’t Duke been a contender? It’s hard to count out a team whose coach is the USA national team head coach.

The Blue Devils ended the post season ranked #1 in the USA Today coaches poll, and I expect it to stay that way – but for how long?  Duke’s roster has 7 freshmen on it right now, as opposed to their 5 returning upperclassmen who barely scratched the time-log last year.

Duke hosts Kentucky in November and Indiana in December in what should be nationally televised games – if they win those two, then they should have a good chance to hold on to Number 1 for most of the season.

Rounding out the Top-5

With Kentucky the likely contender to hold #1 on the NCAA preseason rankings, and Duke granted a spot in the top 5, who follows these two?

Rick Pitino is an NBA-caliber coach, and that fact can’t be dismissed. Many already have Louisville penciled-in at #2 and for good reason. They bring back fifth year, 6’6” Damion Lee and a sophomore 7’0” in Matz Stockman. This could be a potent combination for them, and good coaching will always reign supreme at the college level.

Don’t forget about Tom Izzo over at Michigan State, though. A constant threat once the season gets going, they always finds a way to win in big games and go deep in the tournament. Michigan State will really make a statement if they do well in their first three big games this season. They face Kansas in November and take on both Louisville and Florida in early December.

Expect these games to be close. While Michigan State doesn’t always have big name players with big game capability, their team first oriented basketball tends to isolate star players on the other side of the ball and keep the game close.

The Kansas Jayhawks bring back a stellar cast of upperclassmen this season and should turn some heads towards the middle of the season. They feature returning senior and junior Perry Ellis and Wayne Selden Jr., both of whom are looking to make a name for themselves in the draft this year. The addition of 6’9” Carlton Bragg Jr. in the off-season only extends their dreams of going deep in the tournament this year. This could very well be a team that beats Michigan State on national television on November 17th, and runs away with a tough Big 12 conference this year.

The first game of the season features Philadelphia Science taking on Rider on November 7th. While this isn’t a powerhouse match up, the sound of sneakers hitting the hard wood is all you need to rest easy, knowing quality college basketball is quickly approaching.

Get your college basketball schedule magnets early this season to connect with your customers and keep your name at the top of their minds all throughout college basketball season!

2015 NASCAR Season and The Chase

The 2015 NASCAR season has gone quickly so far, there is only one more race left before the start of The Chase or what many call the playoffs. So far it seems like the Joe Gibbs Racing teams are the ones to beat as they have all done very well this season so far and still look strong.

With the start of The Chase looming right around the corner, there are a few teams that are scrambling to get in on those final few spots. With eleven different drivers winning that leaves just five spots open.   The best way for anyone to get in, of course, is to win since it will guarantee you a spot and because of their points position, some drivers need a win to get in.

This is what The Chase looks like so far:

  1. Jimmie Johnson – 4 wins (Atlanta, Texas, Kansas & Dover)
  2. Kyle Busch – 4 wins (Sonoma, Kentucky, New Hampshire & Indianapolis)
  3. Joey Logano – 3 wins (Daytona, Watkins Glen & Bristol)
  4. Matt Kenseth – 3 wins (Bristol, Pocono & Michigan)
  5. Kevin Harvick – 2 wins (Las Vegas & Phoenix)
  6. Dale Earnhardt Jr. – 2 wins (Talladega & Daytona)
  7. Kurt Busch – 2 wins (Richmond & Michigan)
  8. Carl Edwards – 2 wins (Charlotte & Darlington)
  9. Brad Keselowski – 1 win (California)
  10. Martin Truex Jr. – 1 win (Pocono)
  11. Denny Hamlin – 1 win (Martinsville)
  12. Jamie McMurray 726 points
  13. Ryan Newman 714 points
  14. Jeff Gordon 700 points
  15. Paul Menard 692 points
  16. Clint Bowyer 682 points

Anyone else outside this list is 30 points or more out, so drivers like Kasey Kahne, Kyle Larson and Austin Dillon absolutely need a win in order to get in, there is absolutely no way for them to get in otherwise.

Kyle Busch was impressive getting himself in The Chase after missing eleven races this season due to an injury in the Daytona Xfinity race at the start of the season. For special circumstances NASCAR waves the requirement of the driver having to be entered in every race, they did this last season also for Denny Hamlin. Kyle Busch not only came back and won, but won 4 races so far this season and got himself in the to 30 in points, the only other two requirements. Some say it’s not fair since other drivers raced every race, but I say if he could get himself in the top 30 after missing eleven races, good for him and he deserves it.

All eyes will be on the final spots in The Chase going into Richmond and it puts a lot of pressure on the teams in the bottom five spots in The Chase and those just outside The Chase.   Richmond is generally a pretty exciting race as it is, but add the drama for it being the final race to get into The Chase and it makes it that much more exciting.

After Richmond starts The Chase and every three races, the bottom four get eliminated until the get to Homestead where the final four drivers will contend for the win. The pressure is on and the excitement level for the fans is high during all Chase races. Unlike during the season where one bad race can be made up for, during The Chase, one bad race will see you basically eliminated.

As of right now, Jeff Gordon is in and many would like to see him win the championship in his final year. While he is in right now, he’s had a fairly lackluster season but it’s not because of his driving ability, you can only do so much with what you’re given.

So, who will win The Chase?   Only time will tell, but these final eleven races of the season should prove to be good!

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