…I think Diallo is somewhat limited as a prospect. He’s not overskilled, rather he’s more of a guy that thrives because he plays harder than anyone else. But that’s what Kansas desperately needed along side Perry Ellis and Carlton Bragg. He’ll be what we all wanted Cliff Alexander to be last season.
NBC Rob Dauster
Big 12 / College News
Don't expect new Longhorns coach Shaka Smart to shy away from the coaching style that got him there.
Smart on Monday called a recent copyright tussle between Texas and VCU "comical."
"Havoc isn't a copyright. It's not a brand. It's a way of playing. At VCU it became a way of life of how we did things," Smart said.
"Havoc" is the name Smart gave to the Rams' 94-foot style of intense pressure defense in his six years at VCU. The team's warmup jerseys had the word emblazoned on the back.
VCU had registered "havoc" as a trademark with the state of Virginia, but did not register it on a federal level. Texas last month applied to federally trademark "HORNS HAVOC" and "HOUSE OF HAVOC" but withdrew those requests last week. Texas may have to look for new slogans to print, but that seems to matter little to Smart.
"I can use it whenever I want. I don't know if they're going to take me away to jail," Smart said. "If people want to fight about whether or not it can be on the back of your shirt, that's fine. To me it's less about the word and more about what you do out there."
When Texas faces Washington in men’s basketball on Nov. 14 at the Mercedes-Benz Arena in Shanghai, it will mark the first time an American sports league, collegiate or professional, will play a regular season game in China. And for the Pac-12, the game will be the start of a unique season-opening tradition.
Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott said in a phone interview that the league has agreed to play an additional game in Shanghai in 2016.
“Basically my vision is that this will be an annual tip-off game, the way the Pac-12 starts off every year,” Scott said. “It’ll be a premiere team against a premiere non-conference opponent, a new tradition for how we start the season.”
The costs for the game the next two years will be covered by the Pac-12’s newest—and perhaps most significant—sponsor. The league has agreed to a two-year deal with the Alibaba Group, the Chinese e-commerce giant, to sponsor the Pac-12 China Game in Shanghai in 2015 and 2016. The sponsorship hints at the potential for overseas companies to become involved with college sports.
“It’s hard to know from a historical context to tell which are the tipping points,” Scott said. “But this feels significant to me. The fact that we are partnering with a company like Alibaba, the biggest E-Commerce company in the world, validates the vision and the significance of what we’re doing.”
Fresh off a 38-1 season and a fourth Final Four in the past five seasons, Kentucky coach John Calipari is on the verge of receiving a contract extension that will pay him $8 million for the 2021-22 season, a source close to the program told Sporting News.
Calipari received a contract extension one year that pushed his total package to seven seasons at a total payout of $52.5. Under terms of the extension, his total package will be for seven years and $54 million. The agreement should be made official within the next several days.
…Calipari’s contract is considered one of the most lucrative in college sports. According to figures obtained by USA Today, Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski has earned as much as $9.7 million in a single season. For 2014-15, the paper reported, Krzyzewski made over $6 million. Alabama football coach Nick Saban extended his stay with the Crimson Tide in 2014 at a salary of $6.9 million.
Vick, a 6-foot-5, 175-pound shooting guard from Douglass High in Memphis, visited Kansas State last weekend. He’s slated to visit Kentucky on Sunday-Monday, with no other visits currently planned. Louisville, Texas, UCLA and others reportedly have expressed interest.
“He has qualified but has not decided on (class of) 2015 yet,” Vick’s AAU coach, Norton Hurd of Team Thad, told Zagsblog.com.
“He’s a really athletic scorer/shooter who can create for himself and others,” Hurd added of Vick, who committed to SMU in October over offers from Georgia Tech, Alabama, Memphis, Mississippi, Providence, Tennessee, Western Kentucky, Auburn, California, Baylor, Indiana, Florida State and others.
Vick, who is currently ranked No. 137 in the Class of 2016 by Rivals.com, averaged 26.0 points and 11.0 rebounds a game for Douglass this past season. He averaged 24 points, 8.0 rebounds, 5.2 assists and 3.0 steals per game for Douglass in 2013-14.
“I’m an all-around player. I’m not selfish,” Vick told the Memphis Commercial Appeal last summer. “I think I’m a 1 or a 2 (in college). Coach (Douglass’ Ted) Anderson helped me out a lot. At first I was just a person who shot the ball. I didn’t like attacking. He helped me out with my slashing ability.”
Recruits are worried about the unknown, although Williams -- who, through a North Carolina spokesperson, declined to comment -- and his staff are attempting to convey the message that they won't be hit hard by the NCAA. Recruits are concerned about prospect of being held out of the NCAA tournament.
"That's one of the biggest concerns," Tatum admitted. "Not being able to play in the tournament because of a ban. That would be hard."
Tatum and Giles intend to try and wait and see what happens. Giles is an in-state kid and Tatum still has the Tar Heels as one of his four finalists along with Duke, Kentucky and Saint Louis. They both said opposing coaching staffs are actively using negative recruiting tactics against North Carolina.
It's not even necessary.
"We don't have to bring it up," one assistant coach who has recruited against the Tar Heels on multiple occasions said. "The families bring it up to us. They know everything."
…"Brandon Ingram was probably going to go to North Carolina," one college assistant coach told ESPN. "I think it would have been done without the academic stuff."
"I really thought Brandon Ingram was going to UNC, but I felt like the allegations steered him away from the school," Tatum added.
Recruiting has also been more difficult for North Carolina because the staff has to be more diligent about which recruits it goes after. With the academic issues affecting more than just the basketball program, it can't take chances on at-risk academic kids.
The Tar Heels' staff has a difficult task. While some opposing coaches don't feel the need to bring up UNC's ongoing investigation, others aren't quite so generous.
"We make sure they know," one high-major assistant coach said. "That's all I'll say."
"If I'm North Carolina, give it to me," another added. "It makes it worse not knowing. They are lucky they stacked guys up early before everything really came out."
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