So what happened after that?
“He went back and then he hit a jumper on me,” Withey said with a laugh. “But, yeah, I got him once.”
Withey, Kansas University’s senior center, learned quite a bit from trying to defend the New York Knicks’ star during Stoudemire’s Skills Academy in Chicago, which ran June 21-23.
“I was amazed how quick he is,” Withey said. “He’s not that much bigger than everybody else. He’s just extremely fast. I think that’s the difference between the NBA and college is just quickness.”
…Last year at the Stoudemire Skills Academy scrimmage, former Kansas forward Thomas Robinson received a lot of attention after putting down a one-handed, alley-oop dunk off a feed from Scoop Jardine.
Though it didn’t receive the same Twitter buzz, Withey’s highlight came when trying to prevent a fast-break bucket.
“They went up to try to dunk it, and I blocked it. It hit the backboard and flew all the way to half-court,” Withey said with a smile. “Everybody was just like, ‘Ooh. Aah.’ It was pretty cool.”
…Withey will be picking up more NBA instruction soon, as Sunday he accepted an invitation to the upcoming LeBron James Skills Academy in Las Vegas.
The camp, which runs Friday through Monday, features skill-development work and competition for the top 20 college basketball players in the country.
TRob press conference and rally photo gallery (Angel Morris with the assist)
Video post-press conference interview
Thomas Robinson, the #5 pick by the Sacramento Kings, was welcomed warmly by fans at the annual Rookie Rally held at Arden Fair Mall. The former Kansas Jayhawk had just finished a press conference at PowerBalance Pavilion and a meet-and-greet with Season Ticket Holders.
Scheduled for 3:00 p.m., a late arrival made the crowd even more anxious. A stage was set up in the center of the Arden Fair Mall, in front of Nordstrom's. Fans crowded the floor, as well as the railings and bridges overhead. Posters were handed out, and the crowd filled every square foot of the floor area behind the ropes. The number of Kansas signs, hats & shirts made sure that the former Kansas sophmore would get a taste of home.
…Robinson walked onto the stage amidst thunderous chants of "T-Rob", his nickname back at Kansas. It was obvious that the warm welcome affected him, as tears of joy were visibile. After posing for photos with some Kings fans who had been among the first to buy a number "0", Thomas Robinson jersey, he told the fans how grateful he was for their welcome. His tears of joy were replace by a smile that wouldn't stop, as he realized how much he was loved by Sacramento.
Welcome to your new neighborhood, Mr. Robinson!
…"Things are going to get better," Joe Maloof said, adding for the record: "We're not going anywhere. We're not moving. We're not selling. We're going to fix our team – that's what we're going to do. It's like Geoff (Petrie) said. 'We have young bigs, a good set of guards. We have flexibility, and now we want to add to what we have.' "
Petrie, before Robinson took the microphone: "He comes to us from Kansas, where everyone knows he had an exceptional career. He had an outstanding, almost incredible junior year, where he led his team to the finals of the NCAA Tournament, with 18 points and 17 rebounds. He is a very active player, a great rebounder, endured personal tragedy and still competed at the highest level of the game at which he played. I think (Jayhawk coach) Bill Self said it best, 'he said he's been remarkably balanced in an unbalanced situation.' That's a credit to his character. He's not only going to provide energy to the Kings, but he can be a great teammate, and we'll all looking forward to watching him play."
* Smart, who I don't think has stopped smiling since the draft, added: "Everything we've talked about this team, moving in the right direction, the words, comments he made on that stage really resonated with me, as far as coming to work. We got a great young man ... really humble young man focused on the team concept. We have the right situation her for him to continue his growth as a player, as a person .... When I talked with him on the phone, I kind of got a little emotional ...
"Thomas won't block a lot of shots," Kansas coach Bill Self said earlier Saturday, "but he slides his feet, and he's capable. He'll probably be better in the NBA because we were always concerned about keeping him out of foul trouble. I think it's a great fit (with Cousins), and the fact Sacramento is a little bit of a smaller market, that will be good for him, too. Even though he didn't go No. 2, I think things worked out well. Everyone knows he's been through a lot."
Though his story has been well-publicized, Robinson, 21, is increasingly reluctant to share details of a 2011 season during which his grandmother, grandfather and mother died within a 25-day span. Concerned with his sophomore's fragile emotional state, Self initially was conflicted about how hard to coach his devastated, emerging star.
"In all honesty," said Self, "Thomas lost all of the loved ones who would tell him 'no.' People were afraid to upset him. But he just said, 'Don't coddle me. Coach me like you would have if nothing had happened.'"
Robinson's extensive support system in Lawrence, Kan., includes Angela Morris, mother of his former Jayhawks teammates and second-year NBA forwards Marcus and Markieff. Angela Morris attended the draft proceedings in New Jersey and, at Robinson's request, accompanied him to Sacramento. A self-anointed "godmother," she will return within the next few weeks to help find a house and get settled.
"Thomas doesn't talk about it much anymore," Morris said in a quiet moment, "but it has to be hard. These are the times when you really want your family with you. And it was his mother, you know, who put the ball in his hands. Lisa and I became good friends. I remember a story she told me once about how Thomas would run around, throwing socks like they were basketballs. She said she bought a plastic hoop and put it the bathtub."
Robinson, who choked up and wiped away tears when he was interviewed by ESPN during the draft, allows only that this "is a whole new chapter." He declines to discuss his attempts to gain custody of his 9-year-old sister, Jayla, whose father has spent time in jail on narcotics charges.
Legendary Hall of Fame coach Bob Hurley says the Nets are getting a winner in Kansas point guard Tyshawn Taylor.
The 6-foot-3 Hoboken, N.J., native won a mythical national championship at St. Anthony in 2008, when he went undefeated on a team with a slew of Division 1 prospects.
Despite a controversial career at Kansas that involved several suspensions for off-the-court issues, Taylor helped the Jayhawks win four consecutive Big 12 regular-season titles and, along with fellow senior Thomas Robinson, guided the Jayhawks to the NCAA championship game, where they lost to Kentucky in New Orleans.
“He’s used to winning,” Hurley, whose teams have won 65 straight games entering the 2012-13 season, told SNY.tv. “He won in college, he won in high school. I think he’s going to be a better pro than anyone would’ve ever thought.”
Hurley said the Nets move to Brooklyn should stir a rivalry with the Knicks.
“It will be very exciting now because they’ll be in direct competition with the Knicks,” Hurley said. “I think Brooklyn certainly is already embracing the Nets going there.”
…“It’s a great situation [for Taylor],” Hurley said. “He’ll get a chance to play with Deron Williams. Now there’s a lot surrounding them, so we’ll see whether or not [Taylor] is going to stay there or could he become part of a group of people who end up leaving with Dwight Howard [coming to Brooklyn].
“It’s very interesting, but I know people in the organization. Billy King is a good friend, P.J. Carlesimo is a very good friend, so I’m very happy for him because there’s going to be some really good people he’s going to work with.”
“Coach Self told us a lot of stories about Deron Williams,” Taylor said. “He told us he was the best guard he ever coached. He’s tough, and Coach Self loved coaching him and always talked good about him.”
After getting Taylor, Nets general manager Billy King said he and coach Avery Johnson had talked about getting a point guard they could groom for some time. Taylor said he was excited about the prospect of learning from Johnson, a championship-winning point guard as a player, and Williams — assuming he re-signs with the Nets after free agency begins at 12:01 a.m. tomorrow.
“Well, I love the fact that they believe in me,” said Taylor, who was a third-team All American and first-team All-Big 12 selection last season as a senior at Kansas, where he graduated earlier this spring with a degree in communications. “I appreciate the fact that they gave me the opportunity, so I’m going to take full advantage.
“I think I’m in a really good situation, behind a really good point guard and coached by a great guard in Coach Johnson, who had his time in the league and was really good at what he did. To be able to sit back and learn from these guys will be a great teaching experience for me, and hopefully prepares me well for this league.”
The Nets didn’t work him out individually, but they sat him down for an interview at the combine in Chicago. And, they were satisfied with Taylor’s character.
And after he was drafted, Taylor demonstrated his charm to the media when asked what he majored in at Kansas.
“Communications,” he said. “Can’t you tell?”
“We’ve been talking about a young point guard that we can groom,” Nets GM Billy King said. “With his pedigree, with the big games he has played, we felt he’d be good.
“We had him ranked high, and once he saw him starting to slide we started maneuvering to get there.”
With such credentials going into the draft, Taylor felt slighted by falling into the second round. His response is motivation — “I’m definitely taking notes on the guards ahead of me,” he said.
The notes and lessons aren’t just for the opponents, though. Taylor also had to experience it himself to get to the NBA.
“I don’t think I would take anything back because mistakes are going to come, and I think it’s better sooner than later,” he said. “I was able to get them out of my system, I was able to grow from them, and become a better person. And I’m just looking forward to moving forward.”
NY Daily News
It’s only natural that when watching a college basketball player, the mind drifts to a name from that school’s past he recalls. When Kansas University forward/center Justin Wesley goes to the free-throw line, Wilt Chamberlain comes to mind.
Wesley now is linked in a much more meaningful way to the greatest athlete in KU history. Provocative Lawrence filmmaker and KU faculty member Kevin Willmott has cast Wesley in the role of Wilt in a project that originally was going to be a biography, but since has grown into a more focused look at, in part, Wilt’s cultural impact on Lawrence and KU.
A Kansas man at the center of a large-scale marijuana case allegedly supplied the drug to multiple players from the 2010-11 Kansas University men’s basketball team, a federal prosecutor said.
The Kansas City Star reported Friday that an assistant U.S. attorney made the claim during a June 18 detention hearing for Samuel Villeareal III.
…Jonathan Bortnick, Villeareal’s defense attorney, told the Journal-World Friday, “I have no comment other than I’m aware that during the detention hearing that was brought up.”
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Kansas 2012-13 Schedule
Big 12/College News
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West Virginia University celebrated its first day in the Big 12 with a cookout for its student-athletes, coaches and support staff.
Hundreds of people gathered at the Touchdown Terrace inside Milan Puskar Stadium for the event.
The cookout featured brief remarks from WVU Athletic Director Oliver Luck and President James Clements. There was also an appearance by new Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby.
President Clements presented Commissioner Bowlsby with a WVU hat complete with a Big 12 logo on the back as well as a t-shirt.
"The move into the Big 12 is exhilarating for everybody involved. You're joining a really rich heritage and you're bringing your own rich heritage along," Bowlsby said. "This is a special place. I measure that more in one way than any other way, and that is, the very best people that ever came through here, want to come back here. I don't think there is a better testimony then the fact that Oliver Luck and Bob Huggins, and many others, have decided that this is where they want to spend their career when they have lots of other options."
The Frog Horn blew and fireworks burst in the sky at midnight Saturday as TCU became an official member of the Big 12 Conference.
About 800 to 1,000 fans filled the Rodeo Plaza next to Billy Bob's Texas in the Fort Worth Stockyards to help the Horned Frogs celebrate the move from the Mountain West.
TCU football coach Gary Patterson and athletic director Chris Del Conte whipped up the jubilant crowd like a pep rally even though the Frogs' first football game in the conference is more than two months away.
"It's been a long time coming, but tonight it's official," Del Conte said from the stage. "We fought our way back, we earned our way back, and today we're in the Big 12."
Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby welcomed the Frogs from the stage and received a custom-made pair of Justin boots from Patterson and Del Conte.
"I had dinner with Coach Patterson tonight and he seems pretty intent upon keeping the run he's had going these last few years," Bowlsby told the crowd to cheers. "It's all good and there's a lot of good ahead. Welcome to the league."
Other TCU coaches shared the stage, including women's basketball coach Jeff Mittie, women's soccer coach Eric Bell and men's basketball coach Trent Johnson, who was wearing a black cowboy hat.
"Fifteen years ago we started this walk," Patterson told the crowd. "We were 1-10, didn't have any facilities. We've come a long way but we don't need to stop now. This is not the end of the journey. Our goal is still to win the Big 12 championship in all sports and win a national championship as a university."
Marcus Jordan 's offseason has been filled with more highlights for off-court issues than it has anticipation for next season.
Of course, there was the Twitter kerfuffle, where the UCF guard “accidentally” propositioned a porn star. Next, there were the reports in early June that questioned whether Jordan was returning to the Knights for his senior season.
The latest incident doesn't paint the son of Michael Jordan in a great light, either.
Jordan was arrested early Sunday following a disturbance outside of a hotel in Omaha, Neb. Per reports, police responded to a call at the Embassy Suites in Omaha and found hotel security attempting to subdue Jordan. He was arguing with two women at the hotel and was “very animated, intoxicated and uncooperative.” A news release says that it took multiple officers to control and eventually handcuff him.
Jordan was booked for resisting arrest, disorderly conduct and obstructing. He was released on Sunday night.
2012-13 Early Season Events List
The 2012 USA Basketball Men’s U17 World Championship Team (3-0) used a smothering full-court press in the second half to pull away from a determined Egypt (0-3) squad for a 111-73 victory on Sunday afternoon in Kaunas, Lithuania. Conner Frankamp (Wichita North H.S. / Wichita, Kan.) and Jabari Parker (Simeon Career Academy / Chicago, Ill.), who shot a red-hot 8-of-10 from the field, scored 18 points each to help the U.S. remain undefeated at the 2012 FIBA U17 World Championship.
…Following a day off from games, the U.S. will face France (1-2) on July 3 (1:25 p.m. EDT) before closing preliminary play against China (2-1) on July 4 (1:25 EDT). The top four finishing teams from each group will advance to the medal round with the quarterfinals staged on July 6, the semifinals on July 7 and the finals on July 8.
USA Basketball: Stats, quotes, photos
USA 89, Australia 67
Conner Frankamp (Wichita North H.S. / Wichita, Kan.)
On tonight’s game:
I felt we improved a lot against them. They played pretty well against us in the first game (Monday) and they played pretty good against us in the first half. But, I felt like we stepped it up in the second half.
You looked to struggle a little against Australia’s zone defense. Is that something you’ve worked on?
We’ve worked on it a little bit, but not too much. Hopefully it won’t be a problem anymore, but we’ll see.
What did coach Showalter talk to you about at halftime?
Our rebounding. That was the main thing he talked about, and winning 50-50 balls. We didn’t have any in the first half and that’s not very good for us. He pretty much talked about that and our rebounding.
Was it more about the first game jitters to start the U17 World Championship?
No, I just don’t think we came out very strong. We came out kind of lackadaisical, but we picked it up in the second half.
Was it good to have all 12 members of the team out there today?
It was nice to have everybody back. I felt like they helped us out a lot and it brings everybody together.
FIBA U17 World Championship official site
6/29/12 11:54 AM
Coach dooley from ku said what's your plan to becoming a top 3 nba pic, i replied by saying work hard play hard .
Christopher Cortez (@cwalkertime23)
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