Kansas among the best - if not the best - basketball meccas
TRADITION FOR the modern college basketball player is the uniform his team wore last season. History is the last game, if not the last possession.
So how exactly do you account for the University of Kansas?
Smack in the middle of the country, hard by I-70, with its throwback gym right in the middle of campus on Naismith Drive, KU is as much a feeling as it is a place. But it is a place that has a longstanding love affair with its basketball team that shows no signs of abating.
Temple will be in Allen Fieldhouse on Sunday (4:30 p.m., CBS3). The Owls will be greeted by a respectful and reverential fan base. They will know that Temple just won its 1,800th game. They will know that Fran Dunphy is a terrific coach. They will know the Owls beat then-No. 3 Syracuse 3 weeks ago. In fact, they probably watched the tape before coming to the game.
And they will be there, 16,300 strong, just as they always are; filling the three-story building that looks so much like a classroom from the outside and feels so much like a museum on the inside.
…If you are looking for college basketball history, Lawrence is your town. There really is no place quite like it.
"I haven't been everywhere," Self said. "But it wouldn't take long to call roll because there are other places [with great histories]. It is different here . . . It is a way of life here."
Come inside Allen, which opened March 1, 1955, on a cold, winter night and you have no choice but to feel, smell and see the living history.
Wilt played there. So did Danny Manning.
There's a banner in the stands that reads: "Pay Heed, All Who Enter, Beware Of The Phog."
Three of Allen's players - Rupp, Smith and Ralph Miller (who won 674 games at three schools) - are in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. So is Allen and so is John McLendon, who was the first black man to graduate from Kansas with a degree in physical education and went on to win 523 games at three of the South's traditionally black colleges. Williams is enshrined in Springfield as well. Self may be on the way.
Self gave up a great job at Illinois to come to Kansas. He left a team he recruited that played for the 2005 national championship. He was only leaving there for Kansas where he had already worked because he just knew what it was.
"I'd been here," Self said. "I'd seen firsthand how good it is. It was closer to family and I was a Big 8 guy . . . A guy from the Philly area who had a chance to go back to coach at Temple or Villanova . . . More importantly, I'm just the eighth head coach ever in 115 years. I've always been kind of an historian of the game."
You could make a strong case that KU has the best fans in college basketball. Not the most; that is Kentucky. Not the most inventive; that is Duke. Definitely not the meanest; a title shared by many. Just the best.
"They will get after officials every now and then," Self said. "When Missouri rolled into town or K-State or something, there is a little more of a bitter feeling. When Kevin Durant [of Texas] sprained his ankle and had to leave the game to get it retaped, they gave him a standing ovation when he came back. I don't know how many places that would happen."
The answer is none, or nearly none.
…And there are those 16,300 at every game. And those 14 Final Fours. And those three national championships (1952, 1988 and 2008). Whatever KU has done on the court or is about to do, the fans come early and stay late, close game or rout. They love their state. They love their team. They love the game.
Philadelphia Daily News
@corymsims interviews Reece Davis at the Fiesta Bowl. If I can only see one basketball game I want to see it at AFH, says Reece. Then he blathers on about missery. Fast forward that part.
KUAD: Kansas vs Temple pregame notes
@kuathletics: Jeff Withey is up to 59 blocks on the season. Experience them all here:
CBS Poll: Vote for Withey for POY (lower left side of page)
JayhawkSlant: Hawk Talk Recap
CBS Video: Writer's Panel: Is Kansas the best team in the country?
I know. I'm an idiot. I'm overreacting to the Jayhawks beating my alma mater in Columbus a couple weeks ago. It makes no sense to power-rank a one-loss team above three undefeated teams. Everything I have ever said or written about college basketball has just become irrelevant because I lose all credibility by power-ranking Kansas first. There are a lot of stupid people who cover college basketball, but this makes me the stupidest. I obviously hate Duke, Michigan, and Arizona. I'm trying to be controversial to generate page views. I'm a master troll. Even Skip Bayless thinks I'm illogical.
I'm guessing at least one of those lines accurately describes your reaction to seeing Kansas atop college basketball's most powerful power rankings.
Now please, take a few deep breaths and let me explain. It's simple: Nobody is playing better basketball than the Jayhawks right now. It's not even close, really. Duke, Michigan, and Arizona might have better résumés, but if the NCAA tournament started tomorrow and I had to bet my entire collection of pogs on one team, I wouldn't even hesitate to pick Kansas. Look at how well Kansas played in December. The Jayhawks obliterated Colorado, Belmont, and Richmond, then went on the road and beat a top-10 team fairly easily. Duke trailed in the second half at home against Santa Clara. Michigan's toughest opponent thus far has been North Carolina State, whom they played in Ann Arbor and who have been a disappointment this season. Arizona has beaten some good teams, but stealing a win against Florida at home and squeaking past San Diego State on a neutral court isn't nearly as impressive as cruising against Ohio State in Columbus. Meanwhile, Kansas bent every December opponent over their knee, pulled out a paddle, and went Miss Trunchbull on them.
Grantland: Mark Titus' Power Rankings (Read the whole thing, it's very click-worthy.)
“I’ve watched us play (on film). People are saying too much about our defense. It’s not that good. It’s not,” Self said Wednesday on his weekly “Hawk Talk” radio show. “Of all the possessions we have defensively in a game, I guarantee you, 50 percent are bad possessions compared to 50 percent good possessions. The result may end up good because they may miss a shot or they may fumble the ball or make a bad pass or something that doesn’t have much to do with us. I think the biggest area of improvement for us would have to be the defensive end.”
…“We make a lot of mistakes (on defense),” Self said. “We have had some teams miss open looks. Sometimes we get a false sense that we are guarding people. That is one area and rebounding where our team can make the biggest jump.”
KU ranks 59th nationally in rebound margin (5.8).
Offensively, the Jayhawks rank 26th in scoring offense (78.4 ppg), 10th in field-goal percentage (50.4), 39th in three-point field-goal percentage (37.8) and 10th in assists per game (17.4).
“Offensively, we run quite a few sets,” Self said. “Last year, at the end of the season, our play card had 74 plays we could call that night. Right now we are up to about 42 that we may tweak or add to. We don’t run near as much stuff as we used to.
“A lot (of KU’s offense) is off freelance, a lot is off dribble penetration or feeding the post. I used to be a big ‘set play’ guy. I am not anymore. I’d rather guys learn how to score by ball-and-body movement within the confines of what we are trying to do. It may look bad sometimes, but believe it or not, there’s a strategy.”
Tharpe, a 5-11 backup point guard from Worcester, Mass., has dished 22 assists against no turnovers over the last four games heading into Sunday’s 3:30 p.m., home game against Temple. For the year, he’s averaged 5.0 points with 38 assists against 11 turnovers.
“He is playing well in practice. He is comfortable. I think he is playing at a level he hasn’t played at since he’s been here,” Self said. “He’s a terrific shooter (13 of 30 threes for 43.3 percent) but you can’t always bank on making shots. You bank on being able to guard the ball, creating pressure, creating havoc and pushing it in transition, getting other guys looks. He’s done a really good job in that area.”
Tharpe is ahead of schedule, Self said.
“I thought he’d be capable of being a good backup early in his career and have a chance to play major minutes moving forward,” Self said. “His attitude is so good right now. I go through phases with all guys and I know they go through phases with me. You like what you see and then you don’t like what you see and then it takes a while to get it back.
“I’ve not been easy with Naadir by any stretch. Looking back, he deserved to be somebody gotten on hard because we see (now) what he’s capable of doing. If he wasn’t doing it before it means somebody wasn’t getting it out of him. That’s me. I like where he is.”
…“Perry is playing pretty well right now — practice and in the games,” Self said. “He is getting more comfortable and confident. Jamari seems to be making some positive strides in that area,” he added of frosh forward Traylor, who averages 2.8 points and 3.1 boards in 13.1 minutes per game. “There seem to be some good things taking place even though it may not translate to Sunday (versus 10-2 Owls). Right now in practice, it’s looking pretty good.”
Self said competition has been strong in workouts.
“The better Perry plays, the harder Kevin plays. The better Jamari plays, the harder Perry plays. It’s unbelievable that it works like that,” Self said. “You obviously get better as a team when that happens.”
…More than 1,200 Kansas State fans, who attended Wednesday’s Phoenix Suns-Philadelphia game in Phoenix, booed former KU forward Markieff Morris of the Suns during the game. The KSU fans were in Phoenix for Thursday’s Fiesta Bowl.
“I told Markieff that Big 12 stuff runs deep. I think that’s the first time he’s been booed when he checked into the game,” Suns coach and former KU assistant Alvin Gentry told valleyofthesuns.com.
The KSU fans cheered former Wildcat Michael Beasley who played sparingly for the Suns.
LJW (Did they bring their power towels? How about eco-cat? Purps are so lame.)
The Big 12 basketball race for second place begins Saturday with four conference games. To the victor goes the pleasure of playing on the opposite end of the bracket as Kansas in the conference tournament, played in the Sprint Center (March 13-16).
It’s not a race Kansas has any interest in joining. Anyway, at the moment KU’s focus is trained solely on Sunday’s nonconference game against Temple, which knocked Syracuse from the ranks of the unbeaten. The conference season for KU and Iowa State opens Wednesday in Allen Fieldhouse, by which time the race for second place already will be under way.
College basketball has a number of talented diaper dandies this season.
So far, I feel the best of the best has been Anthony Bennett of UNLV, who is averaging almost 20 points and 9 rebounds per game. He was clutch in scoring 25 points in a big win over California. Bennett had another double-double over the weekend, though his Runnin' Rebels lost to North Carolina on Saturday.
Bennett isn't the only freshman making an impact. Go out to Stillwater, where Travis Ford's team is ranked. Marcus Smart of the Cowboys is a key reason, as he has been a consistent contributor in all areas. Also in the Big 12, Ben McLemore of Kansas is a legit pro prospect and he has been impressive. He showcased his talent before a national television audience, scoring 22 points while grabbing six rebounds in a win at Ohio State.
KUAD: WBB KU defeats KState postgame stats, quotes, recap, video, photos
For the third time in Bonnie Henrickson’s career as Kansas women’s basketball head coach, her team was able to gain a victory against rival Kansas State, with a score of 72-63.
It was the first win for senior Angel Goodrich on the court against Kansas State, and her last game against the Wildcats at Allen Fieldhouse.
Since the loss to California before Christmas the Jayhawks players and coaches have been focused on beating K-State.
“That’s been our motto every practice since getting back from break,” Goodrich said of the words “beat K-State.”
For senior Monica Engelman it was also a memorable last battle against the rivals at Allen Fieldhouse. With her first field goal of the game, Engelman reached the career 1,000 point mark.
“I’m really happy for myself,” Engelman said, “but I couldn’t have done it without my teammates.”
Engelman is the 25th Jayhawk in program history to score 1,000 career points. Goodrich is next up on the 1,000 point watch, after fellow senior teammates Engelman and Davis, who have both already reached the mark.
Unlike some KU teams in the past — including last year’s squad, which lost twice to K-State — this team seems better equipped to take a shot and swing back. And that’s exactly what the Jayhawks did in the second half, ripping off an 18-6 run that gave them a cushion and allowed the home team to cruise to victory in front of a crowd of 3,727 fans.
“They jumped on us and gave us a monster punch in the face,” said senior Monica Engelman, who, with 10 points, became the 25th player in Kansas history to reach the 1,000-point career milestone. “But coach (Bonnie Henrickson) said it was important that we did the same thing to them after that. We were all on the same page, we were hungry, and we came out aggressive in the second half.”
Except for the outcome, this game resembled plenty of recent Sunflower Showdowns. It was hard-fought and physical, with K-State answering KU’s runs and vice versa.
“I was telling the girls before the game, the KU game is like a dogfight,” K-State guard Brittany Chambers said. “It’s not always pretty, but it’s hard-nosed. It’s probably the most emotion you’re going to feel in the game.”
Given the way these games have gone, no one was surprised when K-State rattled off 11 straight points at the end of the first half to erase a KU lead. Haley Texada, who led all scorers with 21 points, connected on a 3-pointer with 11 seconds remaining in the half, sending the Wildcats to the locker room with a 36-34 lead.
“I don’t care what their shooting percentages are before they get here,” KU coach Bonnie Henrickson said. “We understand they’re going to make shots when they get here. That’s what a rivalry does.”
K-State’s shooting cooled in the second half, which allowed the Jayhawks to rebuild a lead. Back-to-back 3-pointers from CeCe Harper put KU in front 52-42, and the Jayhawks made sure this lead didn’t get away.
K-State coach Deb Patterson didn’t see the same intensity on defense when the Wildcats came back from halftime.
“When we came out soft on D, I thought that really impacted our overall play and some of our decisions,” Patterson said. “We never really quite got back in it.”
UDK Photos: WBB defeats KState
Terrilyn Johnson, who helped the Kansas women’s basketball team win a Big Eight Conference title and reach the NCAA Tournament, is among 18 former Indiana High School stars to be honored as part of the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame’s 2013 Silver Anniversary Team.
Johnson, who was named the Jayhawks MVP following her junior campaign and served as one of KU’s captains as a senior during the 1991-92 season, joined 10 members of the 1988 Indiana All-Star squad, including Indiana’s Miss Basketball, and eight all-state players honored for their accomplishments as a senior prep basketball player 25 years ago.
At Wallace High School in Gary, Ind., Johnson scored 1,601 career points and saw her teams combine an 82-7 record while winning three sectionals, one regional and one semi-state. The team also won four conference championships and four holiday tournament championships. Johnson averaged 19.5 points, 13 rebounds, six steals and two blocks to be named all-state during her senior campaign before joining the Jayhawks.
At Kansas, Johnson earned three letters and led the Jayhawks in rebounding during three seasons. Her 786 (8.6 per game) career rebounds rank 11th in the school record books and she finished her career at No. 6 on the steals list with 219 – a number being approached by current Jayhawk point guard Angel Goodrich (184).
Johnson helped Kansas post back-to-back 20-win seasons as a sophomore and junior, winning two games in the 1990-91 Women’s National Invitational Tournament (WNIT) before elevating the Marian Washington-led Jayhawks to a Big Eight regular season title and NCAA Tournament berth as a senior in 1991-92. It was the first of nine straight NCAA berths for the women’s program.
Kansas 2012-13 MBB Schedule
Kansas 2012-13 WBB Schedule
Big 12/College News
The favorite: Kansas
And it's not even close.
I wouldn't be shocked if the Jayhawks won the Big 12 title by four or five games. Bill Self's squad has one of the top freshmen in America in Ben McLemore, who could be a top-five pick in this summer's NBA draft. Center Jeff Withey, who ranks second in the nation in blocks (4.9), has emerged as one of top defensive forces in all of college basketball, and wing Travis Releford is having the best season of his four-year career, averaging 13.3 points while shooting 61.7 percent from the field.
Kansas' biggest advantage, however, is on the sideline. Self, in his 10th season with the Jayhawks, has been as good as any coach in the country in recent years, guiding his team to eight straight Big 12 titles. The toughness Self instills in his players is magnified the most during games away from Allen Fieldhouse. During its conference title run, Kansas is 50-15 in Big 12 road games. That includes a 21-4 mark the past three seasons. No other conference school comes close to matching that.
…Can Kansas make the Final Four? Absolutely. The parity in college basketball is greater than ever. There's no reason this squad, which is hardly Self's best, can't advance to Atlanta and win it all. Kansas has looked iffy at the point guard position at times, but Elijah Johnson -- who played shooting guard last season -- is settling in nicely and Naadir Tharpe has emerged as a serviceable backup. Kansas also starts four seniors, something most teams don't have. Johnson, Withey, Releford and Kevin Young already have experienced success at a high level, which has enhanced their poise and leadership skills this season.
1. Kansas: Is there any coach in the country right now better than Self?
2. Baylor: The Bears can be maddening to watch, but their talent is hard to deny.
3. Oklahoma State: Will the Cowboys keep Smart for more than one season?
4. Iowa State: The Cyclones are too talented not to flourish in this struggling league.
5. Kansas State: Defense will keep the Wildcats in nearly all of their games.
6. Texas: The Longhorns are America's youngest team.
7. Oklahoma: The Big 12's most improved team is good enough to upset anyone.
8. West Virginia: Don't write off the Mountaineers. Huggins is too good of a coach.
9. Texas Tech: Interim coach Chris Walker isn't doing enough to win the permanent job.
10. TCU: First-year coach Trent Johnson gets a free pass because of injuries.
ESPN Big 12 Primer
Conference RPI: 6
Record against Top 25 teams: 3-12
Preseason predictions I'd like to have back: I had Texas third, Oklahoma State fourth, West Virginia fifth and Kansas State sixth before the season. In retrospect, that's probably the wrong order. I'm most confident in Oklahoma State and Kansas State as upper-tier Big 12 teams. I still have hope for Texas because the Longhorns defend well and they'll get Myck Kabongo back next month. As for West Virginia, I'm just not sure they shoot well enough to contend for an NCAA bid.
Preseason predictions I still feel good about: Not that this was going out on much of a limb, but Kansas remains the runaway favorite to win the league and Baylor is as good a choice as anyone to finish second. Also, Ben McLemore has made me look good for having him on the first-team all-league team. He is a contender for freshman of the year and has been one of the league's top scoring guards.
Conference favorite: Not only was Kansas the obvious choice before the season, the Jayhawks have only solidified their status the past two months. Jeff Withey has been a dominant defensive presence in the paint, McLemore has emerged as a go-to scorer on the perimeter and the Jayhawks have won 10 straight since a three-point November loss to Michigan State.
Who else could win it: No other Big 12 team is talented or consistent enough to end Kansas' reign atop the league, but the best of the rest are Baylor, Oklahoma State and Kansas State. The Bears boast an elite guard in Pierre Jackson, a gifted shooter in Brady Heslip and a talented frontline headlined by freshman Isaiah Austin, yet they've sustained four non-conference losses including against Northwestern and College of Charleston. Oklahoma State is much improved thanks to the talent and competitiveness of Marcus Smart and the development of Markel Brown and Le'Bryan Nash. And Kansas State turned some heads by upsetting Florida in late-December.
Yahoo Sports: Big 12 Reset
Texas coach Rick Barnes doesn't buy it. Neither does Texas Tech coach Chris Walker. In the long run, they may be right.
But, as of now, the Big 12 is in a down year. Three teams -- Kansas, Oklahoma State and Kansas State -- are ranked in the AP Top 25, with only Kansas being in the top 10. In the coaches' poll, K-State isn't ranked.
Baylor, Oklahoma and Iowa State lead the non-ranked Big 12 teams that could be ranked at some point. Texas has talent but is without its best player, Myck Kabongo, suspended until Feb. 13. Texas Tech, meanwhile, is finding its way under an interim coach. Newcomers TCU and West Virginia are struggling, as the Frogs have lost key players to injuries and the Mountaineers are in rebuilding mode.
Kansas, it would seem, has a clear-cut path to a ninth consecutive Big 12 regular-season championship.
"I don't give a whole lot of thought to the rankings," said Barnes, in his 15th season at Texas. "I think you'll see in our league that on any given night somebody can win. Our league is good and it's only going to get better, because we do have some real young teams in the league."
Barnes may be right, and it wouldn't come as a surprise to see more than half of the Big 12 in the NCAA Tournament come March. The Longhorns are one of the teams that could find themselves on the bubble, trying to make their 15th straight tournament.
KANSAS (11-1, No. 6): BUY
It is rare to see a team have so many talented pieces that fit together so well. The Jayhawks are anchored by a lottery-level player in Ben McLemore, and even though he is just a redshirt freshman, the older players on the team have encouraged him to be their go-to guy. Kansas also has not one but three fifth-year seniors, including 7-foot senior center Jeff Withey, who is my choice right now for national defensive player of the year. I'm a little disappointed in Elijah Johnson's spotty play at the point, but sophomore Naadir Tharpe is rapidly improving off the bench. We know the Jayhawks are going to win the Big 12 yet again, so they're almost certain to go into the NCAA tournament as a No. 1 seed. I'd be surprised if their season does not end in the 404.
SI Seth Davis: Buy, Sell, Hold
ESPN: King's Wooden Watch Ballot
Unable to shed enough weight to fulfill his immense potential during his two-plus years at UCLA, Josh Smith quit the team a month ago in hopes a change of scenery might help him reinvigorate his stalled career.
Now we know where that destination will be.
Smith will transfer to Georgetown and will be eligible to play by mid-December of 2013, according to a report from CBSSports.com. Smith's former AAU coach confirmed the news via text message Wednesday afternoon.
That Smith drew interest from the likes of Georgetown, Kansas and Washington is a testament to his tantalizing potential. The 6-foot-10 junior was a McDonald's All-American and one of the top big man prospects in the nation when he graduated from Kentwood High School in Kent, Wash. in 2010.
The final few seconds of regulation have been debated on Twitter ad nauseam, reminding me of college basketball's version of the Zapruder film. People found different screen shots of different angles, trying to figure out the difference between the clock on the TV and the clock in the arena. With the game tied in the final seconds, Colorado had a final chance to win the game in regulation. Sabatino Chen got the ball at the top of the key, and let go of a potential game-winner as the buzzer sounded. The shot banked in -- and it looked like Colorado would pull off the upset win. Not so fast. After watching replays for several minutes, the referees overturned the call and waved off the shot.
When it first happened, I was convinced Chen got the ball off in time, just before the clock struck triple-zero and the backboard light turned red. After watching probably 100 replays, I'm still convinced Chen released the ball before the buzzer. There's a GIF above and a screen shot below. You can certainly come to your own conclusion.
After seeing his Colorado team have a victory taken away by a video review, Buffaloes coach Tad Boyle is suggesting a big step in response.
"Get rid of instant replay," Boyle told ESPN.com. "In basketball, football, human error is part of our game. If human error is part of the game, let the officials call the game. Players, coaches and officials will make mistakes. It's part of the game.
"We spend all this money on replays and we still can't get it right. Get rid if it."
Gonzaga's dominance over the Big 12 this season (wins at Oklahoma State, over Oklahoma in Orlando, West Virginia and Baylor at home, Kansas State in Seattle, Texas in a scrimmage in Boulder) begs the question why or when will the Zags play Kansas? KU and Gonzaga confirm there was talk of a series at one point, with a game being played in Seattle. But it never got too serious. The Zags' Big 12 record should be a clear indicator that it would be a top two team this season (behind Kansas) if it were in the Big 12. I used to hate those arguments that a team from outside a power six couldn't hang in an elite conference. Well, Gonzaga should silence that theory.
…Officials have to be held accountable for their actions when there is a mistake. Just like coaches, players and yes, even those of us in the media who cover the games and the sport. That’s why it was good to see Big East official Karl Hess come out late Tuesday night and say officials were wrong in not giving Connecticut a goal-tending basket in overtime after the officials failed to realize UConn and Marquette were facing the wrong way to start the extra period. UConn coach Kevin Ollie said late Tuesday that he realized immediately in the locker room in reading the rule book that the officials got it wrong. Marquette won the game in OT but that first UConn bucket could have changed the momentum of the extra period.
SI Luke Winn Power Rankings (KU #6)
ESPN Jason King "Kings Court"
Big 12 Composite Schedule
It was a marquee matchup between two of the top high school basket teams in Georgia as Tift County, the No. 1 team in Class AAAAAA, faced off with Savannah High, the top team in Class AAA, in the finals of the McDonald's Invitational Saturday night.
Tift County (8-2) beat the Blue Jackets 65-55.
It was just the second loss of the season for the Blue Jackets (9-2) who have yet to play a game on their home court.
Tift Co. senior Brannen Greene, who has signed a letter of intent to play at Kansas, led the Blue Jackets with 32 points.
Savannah Morning News
Greene would hit one two free throws and Tadric Jackson would make a layup to up the lead to seven at the horn and the Jackets would never threaten again.
The Blue Devils rattled off six consecutive points to start the third quarter, including a Greene long bomb from way beyond the arc before their opposition was able to muster a single point on their side of the scoreboard. Savannah's grinding play kept Tift coach Eric Holland frequently substituting and saw consecutive double fouls called and an intentional foul called on Jamal Norman when he sent Greene flying on a drive to the hoop. A second technical foul continued the woes for the Jackets, when Josh Young was flagged late in the quarter. In the meantime, the lead was pushed to 11, 46-35, heading in the fourth quarter.
Savannah was able to cut the lead to six points on two occasions in the fourth, but were never close enough to give the Devils significant worry and each mini-rally was quelled by a timely basket to ensure the momentum stayed with the home team. Savannah was only able to gain a point advantage overall in the final eight minutes, giving the Devils the 65-55 victory.
Greene finished with 32 points, with nearly two equal halves. He scored 15 in the first and 17 in the second.
During the last two games (McDonalds Invitational), Greene, the No. 25 ranked player in the 2013 class, combined to score 48-points, grabbed 19 rebounds, dished out 11 dimes and finished with five steals.
Greene was tabbed the MVP of the McDonalds Invitational, and has guided Tift Country to a record of 8-2. The only two losses of the season took place at the City of Palms, which features some of the top high school basketball programs from across the United States.
2014 White Station (TN) forward Leron Black has decommitted from Baylor.
The Jordan Brand Classic is coming to Brooklyn on April 13th!
Julius Randle made quite a sensation in the recruiting world recently when he was asked what one player he would like to play with in college.
“I guess…you know a point guard is pretty important, so I like Andrew, Andrew Harrison,” Randle told Dave Telep of ESPN.com.
Harrison will be playing the point at Kentucky next season along with his brother, Aaron Harrison.
But another SEC-bound point guard would like to play with the 6-foot-9 Randle, too.
That would be Florida-bound Kasey Hill of Montverde (Fla.) Academy.
“I feel like we can run pick-and-pop, pick-and-roll,” Hill told SNY.tv Wednesday after he scored 10 points as his team crushed St. Peter’s Prep, 89-62, at the Holiday Hoops for Troops event at Roselle Catholic.
“I think it would be a perfect fit for us. Of course, everybody wants to say that they want to make it to the national championship. That’s a very hard thing to do. I haven’t experienced college yet but of course winning a national championship is what we all want.”
Randle, out of Prestonwood (TX) Christian Academy, is down to Kentucky, Florida, Texas, Oklahoma, N.C. State and Kansas. He will sign in the spring, along with fellow elite players Andrew Wiggins, Aaron Gordon, Dakari Johnson and Jermaine Lawrence.
An organizer for national high school basketball tournaments is suing the NCAA in federal court, accusing the governing body of committing fraud and antitrust violations in yet another legal challenge to its power in college athletics.
Bleid Sports, which had organized and promoted the tournaments, said the NCAA pulled the rug out from under them at the 11th hour by determining they violated an NCAA rule designed to prevent universities from gaining unfair recruiting advantages by hosting practices or tournaments where prospective recruits compete.
Bleid Sports, based out of Lexington, Ky., had set up tournaments at several college venues across the nation, including Kentucky, Louisville, Duke and UNLV. They featured teams with top recruits, and had attracted thousands of dollars in registration fees, sponsorship fees and ticket sales, according to the suit.
But less than 48 hours before a scheduled tournament at Kentucky's Rupp Arena in November 2011, the NCAA ruled the tournaments violated bylaw 126.96.36.199, which went into effect in April 2011. It states that a school "shall not host, sponsor or conduct a nonscholastic basketball practice or competition in which men's basketball prospective student-athletes ... participate on its campus or at an off-campus facility regularly used by the institution for practice and/or competition by any of the institution's sport programs." Kentucky sought a waiver but was denied.
The ruling forced that tournament to be moved to a high school venue and led to the cancellations of other tournaments even though Bleid said the NCAA previously indicated they were compliant with NCAA rules.
"The NCAA had previously approved similar events held by Rob Blair, the CEO of Bleid Sports, in 2009 and 2010 at Rupp Arena, and has continued to allow a similar event in Michigan to occur," states the suit, filed in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky, Lexington Division. "The NCAA's arbitrary and inexplicable decision, which resulted in Bleid's events being barred from college arenas, has caused significant harm to Bleid, and Bleid is entitled to compensation for the damages it has suffered."
Bleid went out of business, and others associated with the events also have claimed to have lost money because of the cancellations, including parents and schools who had paid entry fees and made travel plans.
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