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Christmas shopping for the Musketeers

Once you're done unwrapping your presents, drop in here and see what we got the Musketeers.

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Is this really someone you want in your house while you sleep?
Is this really someone you want in your house while you sleep?
Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

It's become a tradition for us here at Banners to open our fake wallets and buy some Christmas gifts for our favorite basketball players (and Jeff Robinson one year). We can't buy real gifts because that would give the NCAA a reason to investigate us and not the rampant cheating, payment of players, and whatever Jameis Winston has done this week. Instead, we'll toss their gifts under artificial and overdecorated trees in our imaginations and let you know here what we got them. Both fun and practical (like your favorite grey sweater with a blue stripe!), these are the gifts that keep on giving.

To: Myles Davis
From: Brad D.

For the man who is water from behind the arc but shoots only 38% inside it, we get the Spalding Pro Image Rim. I know you are wondering how that solves the problem, but it's easy. For home games, any time Myles drives in his own way, an assistant runs to that place and holds the rim up. Myles finishes uncontested (since no one knows where he was going) and his confidence for finishing at the big rim begins to grow.

To: Dee Davis
From: Brad D.

Contemplated a TPO here to keep certain other members of the Banners staff away, but things are actually going pretty well in that regard this year. However, without Joel's constant odes to read, Dee may need something else to occupy his private reflection times. Into Thin Air is one of the best books ever written, and the pages just fly by. I would get Dee two books, but it won't be that long until we're back to extolling his virtues on here I'm sure.

To: Remy Abell
From: Brad D.

What Remy needs is more national attention. 29th in the nation in offensive efficiency, 193rd in TOrate, and in the to 100 in two other categories, Abell is quietly one of the best guards in the nation. I couldn't find a book for him though, so we went a slightly different route with a big red light. Anytime Abell does something that would have the four letter network salivating if he were still at Indiana, he just activates the battery powered light for a bit more attention.

To: Brandon Randolph
From: Brad D.

Randolph is much better this year, but his A/TO ratio is still not acceptable. For that, I've enrolled Brandon on Lesson Planet and pointed him toward the "making good choices" section. It doesn't seem explicitly about basketball, but I'm sure every little bit helps. Plus, just one or two group exercises and he'll be eager to get back on the court and away from the kind of people that organize those things.

To: James Farr
From: Joel D


A couple of pair of Nike Vapor gloves (for home and away). Now I know these are technically football gloves, but they are coated with something called Magnigrip CL, which my 45 seconds of Googling informed me is the best way to make gloves super sticky. James has had some trouble with turnovers this year, but these babies should make sure the ball never again escapes his grasp. They'll have the added benefit of making him even more of a beast on the boards and helping him control the shots he blocks.

To: Sean O'Mara
From: Joel D


Mattel Classic Football and rechargeable AA batteries. O'Mara played football in high school and has occasionally tweeted about how much he misses it. Meanwhile, the poor little fella is stuck spending most of his time observing the play of Matt Stainbrook, James Farr, and Jalen Reynolds during games. Well, problem solved now. This game combines nostalgia, football, and a handheld device small enough to smuggle to the bench and enjoy while the coaching staff is distracted. By the time those batteries give up the ghost, Matt Stainbrook will have graduated and Sean will be busy actually playing.

To: Edmond Sumner
From: Joel D


Five and a half pounds of Weider Health and Fitness Tendon & Ligament Natural Citrus Blast. The stuff comes in bags that are basically 1.1 pounds, and I'm ponying up for five of them for Ed. The supplement is supposed to be the best thing out there for strengthening achy tendons. I have no idea if it actually works or not - take any statements not evaluated by the FDA with a grain of salt - but if it does, his tendons should be like nautical rope by the time next season rolls around.

To: Makinde London
From: Joel D


One dozen Gatorade towels and 1000 feet of "DO NOT CROSS" tape. Makinde's career to this point hasn't given him much opportunity to cultivate good bench habits, but he has taken to the task like a four-year walk-on. It's time to take his bench game to the next level though; now he'll never be without a towel to wave in celebration of a big play, and he won't have to worry about holding his teammates back when he's already got a security line set up. Nobody wants to be on the bench, but if you're going to do it, might as well do it right.

To: Jalen Reynolds
From: Bryan D.

For the man who scores most of his buckets from dunk range and in, a high end wall mirror from Pottery Barn to practice the all important dunk face. Over his season and a half, Jalen has hit us with some quality mugs while he flushed it, but he knows to get his game to the next level it takes dedication... and a $150 mirror.

To: Matt Stainbrook
From: Bryan D.

A 2-pack of Febreeze vent clip car air fresheners. It has been well documented that Stainbrook picks up some coin by being a driver for the Uber app. What I can speculate is that if Matt were willing to drive jubilant X fans home from games, he would probably get insane tips. These top of the line air fresheners mean he really doesn't even have to shower after the game, just hop in the ol' Buick and make some dough.

To: Trevon Bluiett
From: Bryan D.

For the sensational Freshman, a Kodak FZ41 Digital Camera, with which he can immortalize all the wonderful moments from his first campaign at X. So far Trevon has served up some great performances for Xavier fans that will stick long in the memory, with this he can be sure he will never forget them, either. It's compact frame even means that Trevon would probably be able to carry it with him wherever he goes. While it may prove a performance hazard on the floor, I see no reason why a couple of the inside the huddle shots fans love would be too big of a problem.

To: Larry Austin Jr.
From: Bryan D.

Larry has not had the chance to have much of an impact for Xavier this year, but I am still breaking the bank and dropping almost 11 clams to outfit him with the (second) finest training stopwatch that Target has to offer. Sure Larry hasn't logged a ton of game minutes, but how long has he actually been out on the floor? Who knows, but now Larry will be able to keep track for certain by starting the timer when he checks in and stopping it upon his return to the bench, hopefully having turned the game on it's head in the process.

To: JP Macura
From: Bryan D.

On CustomInk.com, you can get  a tee printed for about $20, so I am sending JP one that simply read "I am not Brad Redford." Despite a similar proclivity for chucking up three point attempts whenever the situation may (or may not) call for it, Macura has shown a wider range of abilities than Xavier's beloved gunner of yesteryear. Not to diminish Redford's legacy, much rather to emphasize the fact that JP is a different animal altogether on offense, already having attempted only six fewer two point attempts than Redford did in his first three seasons combined. We fans tend to try and liken players to ones with which we are familiar, but there might not be analogy for someone like Macura.

That concludes our Christmas shopping for this year's Musketeers. As per the usual, we welcome your comments as to what you would get your favorite Muskie, or even what you would buy Joel (a toupee)! We at Banners wish all of our readers a very Merry Christmas and all the best and safest travels to be with loved ones around this time. Just make sure your loved ones leave you alone for the FGCU game.