Naz Long only played a single minute in the game, but he remembers it perfectly, sitting on the left side of the bench and feeling his heart jump —possibly the biggest win of the season was about to take place. But McLemore’s shot banked in. And Long’s heart sank at once.
“That’s something that all of us haven’t forgot,” Long said.
Melvin Ejim was the only player on this year’s team on the floor for the shot. He chased Kansas’ Elijah Johnson around a screen before he kicked to McLemore. Ejim crashed the glass in case he missed. But McLemore’s shot banked in. Instead Ejim found his way back to the bench with his head down through a scattered group of Kansas players celebrating the chance to go win the game in overtime.
“It was a crazy deal, but it’s happened to us before,” Ejim said. “It’s part of the game, guys make big shots and make big plays. You’ve just got to be able to come back and play. Last year we just didn’t have it, they just had the momentum and it was all in their favor.”
One year later, the road trip to Phog Allen Fieldhouse and its raucous atmosphere between No. 6 Kansas (15-4, 6-0 Big 12) and No. 16 Iowa State (15-3, 3-3) might not come down to something like a bank shot in at the end of regulation. Hoiberg believes it’s all about rebounding and getting back in transition.
…“I thought we had a great week of prep and practice and hopefully that will carry over with these couple days leading into this Kansas game, because you have to have [confidence],” Hoiberg said. “If you go down there and you’ve got your tail between your legs, you’re not going to have any prayer to come out with a win.”
Iowa State Daily
KU’s returning players, of course, have fond memories of McLemore’s heroics. He’s now a rookie with the Sacramento Kings.
“Yes, that’s Ben McLemore, that’s my boy,” Tharpe said with a smile, asked if he thought the bank shot would drop through the hoop. Tharpe, by the way, burned ISU for a career-high 23 points on Jan. 13.
“Toward the end of that game, I didn’t know if we were going to come back and win,” noted red-shirt freshman center Landen Lucas. “When Ben hit that shot, I knew we were going to win in overtime. There was too much momentum. That was a big-time shot, definitely one to remember.”
…Freshman guard Monte Morris, who had seven points and four assists against KU in Hilton this season, remembers battling some KU fans on the Internet a year ago.
“I think I tweeted about it, saying when I get there hopefully it’ll be a different outcome,” Morris said. “I got a lot of tweets of, ‘Wait until you come here.’ KU fans got on me saying they can’t wait to chant some stuff,” he added, smiling. “This is a year ago. I don’t know if they are going to do that. They remember, so it should be fun.”
…Noted ISU’s Morris: “It’s not a better feeling going somewhere and stunning their crowd. We have been talking about that all week, the feeling if we win at Kansas we can walk off the court and silence all their fans and the critics saying we can’t beat Kansas.”
“We want to beat every team,” senior guard DeAndre Kane said. “Kansas, they are on our schedule. They are one of those teams in our conference … you circle that date when you play Kansas.”
Iowa State snapped a three-game losing skid Saturday when it beat Kansas State 81-75 behind a 20-point performance from the Big 12s leading scorer, Melvin Ejim.
“He put that game away for us by himself,” Kane said.
Hoiberg said no team in the country is playing at a higher level right now than Kansas.
“When you have the talent and skill of their players, and now they are confident … that’s a tough team to beat,” the coach said.
For Iowa State to have a chance, the Cyclones will have to shoot well from beyond the arc.
In the first meeting, Iowa State was 4 of 25 from the 3-point line and Georges Niang had one of the worst shooting games of his college career, going 4 of 20 from the floor and 0 of 9 from long range.
But Niang has shot better of late.
He scored 18 points in the loss at Texas and in the win against Kansas State and shot a combined 8 of 13 from the 3-point line.
Kansas took advantage cold-shooting by the Cyclones to win 77-70 in their first meeting just over two weeks ago. The Cyclones shot just 31 percent from the field, including 4-of-25 shooting from three-point range.
Since that loss, Iowa State is shooting 40-percent on three's and still lead the conference in scoring.
The Cyclones haven't won at KU in nine years, but this year's team is confident they can change that.
"Playing against them once already, the only thing that's really going to change is the atmosphere at KU," said freshman Monte Morris. "I know it's a big stage and everything but I just think preparation and film, I feel like I should be fine."
"We just got to go down there and go at them," said senior DeAndre Kane. "Try to get them in foul trouble. You can't shy away from contact. You go right at their chest and try to get their big men in foul trouble."
Call it the ghost of Phog Allen, a former Jayhawk player and coach for whom the 59-year-old building is named – a place where Kansas has compiled half its league-leading 6-0 Big 12 record.
“I don’t have to tell Monte anything about what to expect,” said teammate Melvin Ejim, whose 17.9-point scoring average tops the conference. “He’s big time. He’s played well in any environment that we’ve had. He’s going to be ready for Kansas. He’ll be fine. He’ll be focused.”
Morris will open the game on the bench for the 16th-ranked Cyclones, as usual. He’ll be there until coach Fred Hoiberg moves DeAndre Kane off the ball and to another of the other positions he plays so well.
“I like coming off the bench,” Morris said. “First, I can observe and see what the starters are doing, plus, I can be an automatic spark coming off the bench. I don’t feel like I should be starting.”
…“The only thing that’s going to change is the atmosphere at Kansas,” Morris said. “I’ve already played against those guys once; I feel I should be fine.
“I’m going to enjoy it.”
So is Kane, also making his first Allen Fieldhouse appearance.
“I’ve played at Syracuse in the dome, and that was pretty crazy,” the Marshall transfer said. “But if you beat (Kansas) in front of that crowd, that’s one of the games you remember and tell your kids about.”
Des Moines Register
The double-teams in the post are coming. Kansas saw them last time against Iowa State, and besides that, the Jayhawks have seen them from nearly every Big 12 opponent.
That means KU coach Bill Self has been preaching a simple message to his big men in practice before Wednesday’s 8 p.m. home contest against 16th-ranked ISU.
“Enjoy the trap. Don’t panic,” KU freshman forward Landen Lucas said. “If they’re sending an extra guy at you, somebody’s open. It’s just about being patient, finding him and getting him the ball.”
Teams have been sending extra defenders at KU’s bigs for one main reason: It’s been working.
The Jayhawks have shown a tendency to be careless with the ball in Big 12 play, leading the conference with 15 giveaways per game.
…“In practice a lot of times, we’ll just wait for the trap to come, enjoy it, take a retreat dribble and then find the open person,” Lucas said. “That’s the main key to beating a trap for sure.”
KU likely won’t be able to survive another sloppy offensive effort against Iowa State, as it'll be tough for the Cyclones to shoot it as poorly as they did in the first matchup. ISU made just 4 of 25 3-pointers in the first game (16 percent), and that included an 0-for-9 effort from sophomore Georges Niang.
“We know we need to guard them better,” Self said. “Even though they missed shots the first time, a lot of that was just that we got lucky.”
...“Whenever you have a talented team that gives you a good game every time, it becomes a rival. It’s exciting,” Lucas said. “We always look for something like that, and I think Iowa State is definitely becoming somebody like that.”
KU forward Tarik Black is still being held back by a sprained right ankle suffered in Jan. 20's home game against Baylor.
“He’s made progress, but it’s still not great. We’ve got to see today,”Self said Tuesday. “Yesterday he practiced and went through everything, but he was still probably only 50, 60 percent. We’re hopeful that he’s available to us Wednesday, but as of right now, he’s still questionable for the game."
“There’s nobody else that has a fifth guy like Landen,” Self says.
In some ways, this is a rather obscure thing to be touting. Lucas, a redshirt freshman, plays 5 minutes per game. How important can a fifth big man really be? But in other ways, this shows the strength of the Self system, one of the reasons the Jayhawks are 6-0 in the Big 12 and working on a 10th consecutive conference title.
Lucas is a 6-foot-9 forward who probably would play significant minutes for any other team in the Big 12. But at KU, he’s insurance against injury.
On Wednesday against Iowa State, Lucas could slot in as the Jayhawks’ fourth big man in the rotation for the second straight game, replacing senior forward Tarik Black, who’s recovering from an ankle injury suffered last week against Baylor.
“It’s just about staying patient,” Lucas said. “… But it’s a good thing, too. Because we push each other in practice.”
This is the model at Kansas. Recruit big guys with potential. Teach them the game. Let them mature. And sometimes, you end up with this.
…The depth has shown up in the paint. Kansas is outrebounding Big 12 opponents by nearly 10 boards per game (38 to 28.5) in conference play. And the Jayhawks are shooting 57.1 percent inside the three-point line, the second-best mark in the country.
The frontcourt also made a difference in its first round with Iowa State, a 77-70 victory in Ames on Jan. 13. KU outrebounded Iowa State 53-36, making up for a season-high 24 turnovers. If Kansas can dominate the boards again tonight, they’ll have the chance to be 7-0 in the Big 12.
“We have such an athletic team that we want to outrebound teams by a lot more than we have been,” Lucas said. “It shouldn’t even be close.”
Rebounding, of course, is the one thing that could keep Lucas in the rotation. Even still, a healthy Black likely limits Lucas’ minutes for the rest of the season. With Black on the bench, Lucas had seven points and five rebounds in last Saturday’s victory at TCU. But the rebounds, which came in just 13 minutes, meant the most.
As a kid growing up in Portland, Ore., Lucas watched fellow Oregon native Kevin Love, now the NBA’s premier rebounder for the Minnesota Timberwolves. Lucas’ father, Richard, was once a standout rebounder for Oregon in the early 1990s. So for now, Lucas is content being the fifth-best big man on a top-10 team. But he also has lofty goals: Someday, he says, he’d like to lead the country in rebounding.
“It’s something that my dad kind of installed in me,” Lucas said. “Growing up, that’s all he harped on — rebounding.”
Did Kansas stifle Iowa State, or did the Cyclones just have a terrible shooting night? That’s a key question after Iowa State shot just four of 25 from three in a 77-70 loss to KU at Hilton Coliseum on Jan. 13. Sophomore forward Georges Niang was the coldest player in the gym. Niang, who averages more than 15 points per game, was four of 20 from the field. It’s been a trend against Kansas. In four career games against KU, Niang is 20 of 62 (32 percent) from the field, including seven of 29 from behind the three-point line. Since the loss to KU, the Cyclones have shot 20 of 50 from three-point range. Iowa State ended a three-game losing streak with an 81-75 win against then-No. 22 K-State last Saturday in Ames. Iowa State senior Melvin Ejim leads the Big 12 at 17.9 points per game and has scored 10-plus in 20 straight games. The Cyclones are in search of their first victory at Allen Fieldhouse since 2005.
…BOTTOM LINE: Kansas is trying to go 7-0 in conference play for the third straight season and the sixth time in the Self era. It’s a bad matchup for Iowa State, which has nobody inside to contain Embiid. Then again, most teams don’t.
Josiah Turner of Sacramento, Calif., chose Arizona over Kansas University and disappointed a fan base worried about where the Jayhawks would turn next for a point guard from the recruiting Class of 2011.
They turned to Naadir Tharpe, a 5-foot-11 sharpshooter from Worcester, Mass., ranked 92nd in the nation by Rivals.
A question about him echoed through his first two seasons at KU: Was this a Kansas-caliber point guard capable of running a perennial college basketball powerhouse, or a shooting guard trapped in a point guard’s body struggling to find his shot?
Finally, the doubt has vanished. Tharpe has blossomed into a strong leader and lethal three-point shooter. And Kansas is right where it always seems to be, atop the Big 12 and in the hunt for a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.
Rivals ranked Tharpe 19th among point guards in the Class of 2011.
What became of Turner, ranked the No. 2 point guard in the class behind only Marquis Teague, who left Kentucky after winning a national championship as a freshman? Of the 18 ranked ahead of Tharpe, Turner and 11 others are no longer with the schools that originally received their signatures on letters of intent.
After an arrest for suspicion of “extreme” DUI and other off-court issues, Turner was asked to leave the program by Arizona coach Sean Miller. Turner planned to transfer to SMU but never made it. He played for two professional teams in Canada and was released by the first for not running the plays called by the coach, according to the coach. His stay in Hungary ended after a month when he asked for his release because he was tired of counting his bed-bug bites from the dumpy apartment the team assigned to him. For now, he’s playing for the Los Angeles D-Fenders of the NBA Development League.
B.J. Young of Arkansas and Myck Kabongo of Texas join him in the D-League.
Teague, Shane Larkin and Tony Wroten are in the NBA.
Five players didn’t like their original choices and transferred to other Div. I schools. Another was suspended from this entire season for off-the-court conduct.
The half-dozen of 18 players ranked ahead of Tharpe still competing for their original schools: Tracy Abrams (Illinois), Ryan Boatright (UConn), Jahii Carson (Arizona State), Quinn Cook (Duke), Rashad Madden (Arkansas) and Shannon Scott (Ohio State).
Tharpe ranks sixth in scoring, second in three-point percentage and second in assists-to-turnover ratio among the seven survivors.
He still will frustrate his coach at times, because that’s what point guards do, but he plays with confidence and teammates feed off of that. Nothing better demonstrates his year-to-year improvement than his three-point shooting percentages: .273, .330, .441.
During his tenure in Lawrence, Bill Self has reliably churned out a series of dominant defenses. That tradition has undergone a slight revision this season, however, as the Jayhawks have been merely very good and not great on D. Then again, with an offense that's rung up an incredible ("Creighton-like"?) 1.20 points per possession in conference play, maybe Self can afford a normal defense once per decade. Andrew Wiggins draws fouls, Joel Embiid converts looks at the rim and Perry Ellis does whatever is necessary for an offense that already has excelled against the best competition the Big 12 has to offer.
The only cause for concern here if you're a Jayhawks fan is turnovers, as KU has given away the ball on 22 percent of its Big 12 possessions. If Self can fix that one leak, it's awfully tough to envision how this team can be stopped. In fact, with any luck we'll see this offense face the Arizona defense come April. That would be one epic collision.
ESPN ($) Gasaway: Ranking the top title contenders
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Tuesday was a day off for the Kings. But rookie guard Ben McLemore has found he has little use for days off.
Why would McLemore want to rest when there are more shots to take, weights to lift or ballhandling drills to go through?
Asked how he might spend his day off before the Kings host the Memphis Grizzlies tonight at Sleep Train Arena, McLemore had a couple of ideas: first set up a meeting with team director of athletic performance Chip Schaefer and then call an assistant coach for on-court work.
“I want to get with Chip, work on some upper body,” McLemore said. “Try to build some mass, get a little stronger and also work on some stuff on my game.”
That dedication has kept the Kings high on McLemore, even as he’s endured shooting slumps and struggles on defense during his first NBA tour.
McLemore has shown signs the workouts have been productive. He’s made 12 of 24 shots in his last two games while showing off other skills. He grabbed a season-high nine rebounds in Monday’s 106-99 loss to Utah.
His dribbling is also noticeably improved – a point of emphasis after he struggled mightily to control the ball during summer league.
Coaches are thrilled to see McLemore making plays off the dribble – using either hand – and showing confidence and the ability to create plays for himself or teammates.
“That’s something that we’ve been working on since summer league, his ballhandling, his ability to make plays off the dribble and not solely be a jump shooter and so reliant on his jump shot,” coach Michael Malone said. “Because he’s too athletic to be a guy that’s just going to catch and shoot. He has to put pressure on the basket and make plays for himself and after he draws the defense make a play for a teammate.”
Much of the work McLemore does to become a well-rounded player happens after practice and on days off.
Yes, the Kings love to see him make shots. But the coaching staff might be happier to see him excited about other improvements in his game.
University of Kansas Film & Media Studies Professor Kevin Willmott’s latest film, "Jayhawkers," will premiere at 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. Friday, Feb. 14, at the Lied Center.
Willmott’s latest film tells the story of a group of unlikely allies who modernized college sports and changed Lawrence during the Civil Rights movement that would transform American society.
"Jayhawkers" stars KU alumnus Kip Niven ("Magnum Force," "Return to Lonesome Dove") as Coach Phog Allen, Jay Karnes ("The Shield," "Burn Notice") as Chancellor Franklin Murphy and Trai Byers ("90210," "All My Children") as jazz musician Nathan Davis. The film also features Justin Wesley as Wilt Chamberlain.
Additional screenings will be at 11 a.m., 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 15, and 1 p.m., 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 16, all at the Lied Center. Tickets can be purchased at the Lied Center Box office.
For more information about the premiere, contact Sarah Sahin in the Film & Media Studies Department at email@example.com.
KUAD WBB: Texas runs past Jayhawks 80-55
“That’s what happens when you don’t show up,” a disappointed Henrickson said after the game. “To feel like they played harder than we did — and we were kind of a no-show there in the second half — that’s a tough pill to swallow.”
Henrickson was far from the only one frustrated and confused by the Jayhawks’ latest effort. Asia Boyd (13 points) and Chelsea Gardner (10) both said suffering such a sound defeat brought into view everything the team needed to work on to get out of its win-one-lose-one stretch. Since dropping the first three games of Big 12 play, the Jayhawks (10-11 overall, 3-6 Big 12) have been up and down for six straight.
“I think we’re disappointed in ourselves as a whole,” Boyd said. “We just weren’t responding well today, and, in the second half, we just came out flat.”
Big 12 / College News
It's true: no team has put more highly touted recruits on the court over the past six years and left us wanting more as much as Baylor. In the big picture, Scott Drew's done such amazing things there. Two Elite Eights attached to his legacy is a meaningful thing. But now, even with a team that wasn't Final Four-good but certainly second weekend-good, the Bears are 1-6 in the Big 12 following a 66-64 home loss to 12-9 West Virginia.
Juwan Staten sank a reverse layup to give West Virginia a two-point lead with 3.1 seconds left. The Bears were unable to get a shot off in time, so Kenny Chery's banked-in 3 at the buzzer was no good -- because he was still holding the ball at the horn.
The Bears' next three games: at OK State, vs. Kansas, at Oklahoma. OH MY GOD THE HORROR. It's very plausible BU is going to be 1-9 in the Big 12 and at that point a borderline NIT team.
…Kentucky loses, we're talking about it.
Well, first off, have to mention that in the 87-82 loss, Kentucky opted not to foul the final 14 seconds. It was weird. I don't know what was happening. It looked like UK straight gave up, perhaps because, although it was just a five-point margin at that point, the Wildcats were trailing by double digits for most of the second half and just figured, Whateva. Julius Randle finished with a season-low six points.
UK is now 15-5 and sits behind Florida and Ole Miss in the SEC standings. Yes, there is panic. Yes, plenty of Kentucky fans are growing not to like this team. Yes, this team will still make the NCAA tournament. Yes, John Calipari has a lot to answer for.
#Creighton running KU’s “Chop” to win game is the ultimate hat tip to Bill Self
Kansas State was coming off two tough losses on the road, and its three leading scorers were struggling to make a shot against Texas Tech's length and athleticism.
Leave it to a less-heralded cast of players to come through in the clutch.
Will Spradling scored a season-high 17 points, Nino Williams added 13 off the bench and the Wildcats (15-6, 5-3 Big 12) made a series of foul shots down the stretch to preserve a 66-58 victory Tuesday night.
Kansas State wound up getting 25 points from its bench.
"We've done it in other games. This isn't the only game we've relied on them," Spradling said. "Our bench has been a real factor for us."
Especially the way their stars were struggling: Marcus Foster had two points on 1-for-8 shooting, Shane Southwell missed all six of his 3-point shots and finished with four points, and Thomas Gipson scored seven before fouling out.
Cleanthony Early scored 23 points, including 12 of the 21 Wichita State scored in the second half, to help the fourth-ranked Shockers stay unbeaten with a 57-45 victory over Loyola of Chicago on Tuesday night.
Wichita State (22-0, 9-0 Missouri Valley Conference) saw a 22-point second-half lead trimmed to nine in the game's final minutes but hung on to extend school records for winning streak and start to a season. The Shockers shot 23 percent (6 of 26) in the second half.
Freshman Milton Doyle scored 14 of his 16 points in the second half for Loyola (8-13, 3-6).
For years, Syracuse has made a habit of seemingly never leaving New York State for its non-conference schedule, although the Orange did play in Maui this year.
This year, it’s entirely possible the Orange won’t have to leave the Empire State during the NCAA Tournament until the Final Four in Arlington, Texas.
Both Joe Lunardi and Jerry Palm have the Orange as the No. 1 seed in the East and opening in Buffalo for the first two rounds. Buffalo, by the way, is only about 1 hour, 20 minutes from point guard Tyler Ennis’ home near Toronto.
Assuming the Orange get past those first two rounds, they would then play the East Regional semifinals and final at Madison Square Garden March 28 and 30.
“It’s gonna happen,” Lunardi said on Twitter of the Orange playing in Buffalo.
Hey, credit to Navy for taking a chance and doing something cool. If you beat the team mascot at rock-paper-scissors, you get free admittance to the team's game on Wednesday against Boston University.
Oregon will be giving away Phil Knight bobblehead dolls on Saturday at the Ducks' home basketball game against USC.
The Nike chairman has become Oregon's most notable and beloved graduate; establishing a Nike-driven athletic culture around Eugene and recently donating millions of dollars to improve the Ducks' facilities. Oregon's home for basketball, Matthew Knight Arena, is named for Knight's late son.
With help from local fans and the hosts of ESPN's College GameDay Covered by State Farm, Travelocity's Roaming Gnome will look to uncover the very best of pre-game food, fun and fan festivities in and around college campuses across the country.
The travel icon's basketball journey began in Philadelphia when crosstown rivals Temple University and La Salle University tipped off and continued last weekend in East Lansing, Mich., with College GameDay host Rece Davis and hundreds of screaming fans of Michigan State University and the University of Michigan. This weekend, be on the lookout for the Roaming Gnome in Syracuse, N.Y. as the hometown team takes on Duke University.
"The Roaming Gnome and college basketball fans share an obvious passion for travel," said Bradley Wilson, chief marketing officer, Travelocity North America. "Our work with ESPN is about showing fans how Travelocity can empower them to 'Go and Smell the Roses' to see their team in action."
The Roaming Gnome will look for local recommendations while he's in town – best places to eat, drink, dance and sleep – so fans are encouraged to reach him via Twitter (@Roaming Gnome) and Instagram (@RoamingGnome). He'll also share photo and video highlights of his hometown adventures during the road trip which will include stops at the following men's basketball games through March 8.
The influence point guard Tyler Ennis has had on Syracuse's 19-0 start suggests he might be the best freshman in the country, surpassing, among others, Kansas forward Andrew Wiggins, the consensus preseason choice as the top freshman.
Ennis and Wiggins have one notable thing in common: They are both Canadian.
So is Anthony Bennett, the No. 1 pick in last year's NBA draft. Wiggins might be the top draft choice this year.
This season, 97 players with Canadian hometowns are on Division I rosters, although many attended American high schools.
Things are different than they were in 1983 when Leo Rautins, who played at Minnesota and Syracuse, became the first Canadian to be taken in the first round of the NBA draft.
And they are different than they were in 1992 when Steve Nash came out of British Columbia as an unknown to play at Santa Clara and later win two NBA MVP awards.
Now a team composed of the best college players from Canada would fare pretty well against a squad of the top college players from the United States. Now there's an idea for a postseason college all-star game.
Here are our picks for first- and second-team all-Canada squads of current college players (followed by college, hometown and pertinent stats). We chose units that could be on the floor together. The fact that Kevin Pangos did not make our first-team backcourt says something. The fact that Baylor's Brady Heslip, Dayton's Dyshawn Pierre and St. Bonaventure's Matthew Wright did not make either team says more.
"There's been a lot of players who've come out of high school," Bryant said. "If you do the numbers and you look at the count, you'll probably see players who came out of high school ... were much more successful on average than players who went to college."
That was Bryant's larger point.
And it's 100 percent true, by the way.
For those unfamiliar with the numbers, 39 high school players were selected in the first or second round between 1995 and 2005. Here's a breakdown of how they did:
• Ten became NBA All-Stars.
• Three became NBA Most Valuable Players.
• Thirty-three spent at least five years in the NBA.
That means only six out of 39 spent fewer than five years in the NBA, which means you were essentially twice as likely to get an All-Star as you were a flameout if you selected a high school prospect from 1995 until it was no longer allowed before the 2006 NBA Draft. Roughly 85 percent of the time, at the very least, you got a rotation player. So, like Bryant said, on average the prospects who skipped college and were selected have been much more successful in the NBA than the prospects who went to college before being selected.
It's not even close, actually.
Which is not to suggest that nobody needs college.
And it's not to suggest that nobody learns anything in college, either.
Bryant taking things that far is what muddied the otherwise accurate message he was trying to deliver. I mean, ask Adreian Payne if he's learned anything at Michigan State. Or Doug McDermott if he's learned anything at Creighton. Or Nik Stauskas if he's learned anything at Michigan. Those three players, and countless others, entered school with either modest or non-existent professional aspirations. But they've all developed in college, one way or another, and now all three could be lottery picks in June's NBA Draft.
Who knows where they'd be right now without college basketball?
Most prospects need college basketball.
But the truth is that the best of the best, the truly elite talents, do not benefit much from it, and that's the point, I think, that Bryant was trying to stress. In other words, if you're a good enough prospect to genuinely be on the NBA's radar out of high school -- like Andrew Wiggins, Jabari Parker, Julius Randle, etc., -- history shows that you're more than capable of making the jump and enjoying a long and profitable career.
Is that best for the NBA?
Sportscaster Frank Boal’s 27-year-old son, Brett, has died following a car accident in Albuquerque, N.M., KSHB-TV announced Tuesday afternoon.
KOAT, Channel 7, in Albuquerque had reported that Brett Boal was critically injured in the single-vehicle crash about 2 a.m. Jan. 18. Police said Boal lost control of his vehicle and struck a concrete barrier. The accident shut down Interstate 25 there for about two hours.
Brett Boal suffered traumatic brain injuries as a result of the wreck. He died Sunday.
KSHB said the young man worked in the hotel management industry and was living in Albuquerque.
The Boal family issued this statement:
“Kansas City, you are wonderful. You have no idea how much all the love and support has meant to our family with the passing of our son Brett. Brett loved life, his family, his friends and his hometown. Even the people here in Albuquerque came under the spell of his infectious smile and personality, and that has also given us great comfort. Keep all of us in your thoughts and prayers — we’ll need them moving forward.”
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations in Brett’s name to the Brain Injury Association of Kansas and Greater Kansas City ( biaks.org).
Frank Boal has been a fixture on Kansas City television for more than three decades. He spent 28 years as sports director at WDAF, Fox 4, stepping down in 2009.
Big XII composite schedule (includes results, highlights, stats)
ESPN College GameDay Schedule
2013-14 TV Schedule
This year's McDonald's All-American Games rosters — 24 boys and 24 girls — will be announced during a 30-minute special starting at 6 p.m. on ESPNU today.
Myles Turner is one of the top uncommitted basketball recruits in the country in the Class of 2014.
Oklahoma State is on the short list of finalists for the versatile 7-footer from Trinity (Bedford, Texas). Turner has the Cowboys on his radar along with Kansas, Arizona, Duke, Ohio State, Kentucky and Texas.
It's a cream-of-the-crop list with the Pokes included. Oklahoma State has had recent success recruiting out of the Dallas area with Marcus Smart and Le'Bryan Nash, so the chances aren't bad at landing Turner, who shows shades of Kevin Durant (range) and Kevin Garnett (shotblocking) in the feature clip.
Cushing Academy junior guard Jalen Adams @JalenAdams25 was offered by Kansas yesterday
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