LJW: 2012-13 Season in Photos
Kansas redshirt freshman guard Ben McLemore was named to the 10-member John R. Wooden Award All-American Team announced Monday by the Los Angeles Athletic Club.
An All-Big 12 First Team selection, McLemore led Kansas in scoring in 2012-13 at 15.9 points per game, which broke the KU freshman record of 14.6 ppg average by Jayhawk legend Danny Manning in 1985. A 6-foot-5 St. Louis, Mo., native, McLemore's 589 points and his 87.0 free throw percentage also broke KU freshman marks. During the 2012-13 season, McLemore was a three-time Big 12 Rookie of the Week and one-time league player of the week this season and had 10 games of 20 points or more, including three 30-point efforts. His 36-point effort against West Virginia (3/2) broke the KU freshman single-game scoring record.
Historically, this is the fourth-straight season and seventh time in the Bill Self era that a Jayhawk has been selected to the John R. Wooden Award All-American Team. McLemore marks the 13th overall KU player named to the team, which started in 1977. Manning was a two-time honoree in 1986 and 1988 and won the John R. Wooden Player of the Year Award in 1988.
The John R. Wooden Award Men's Player of the Year presented by Wendy's will be announced on ESPN during the Final Four Weekend in Atlanta. The 2013 Wooden Award Gala presented by Wendy's will take place April 11-13, 2013, at The Los Angeles Athletic Club. The gala will honor the men's and women's Wooden Award winners, All-Americans and the Legends of Coaching Award winner, Kansas head coach Bill Self.
AP: McLemore, Withey AP All-Americans
One of the youngest teams in Kansas University basketball history will embark on a challenging schedule in 2013-14.
The Jayhawks will meet Duke in the third and final Champions Classic, set for Tuesday, Nov. 12, in Chicago’s United Center. Michigan State will meet Kentucky in the other game of the one-day doubleheader.
KU is 0-2 in the Classic, having lost to Kentucky in 2011 and Michigan State in ’12.
The Journal-World has learned the four schools have had talks about renewing the wildly successful Classic, presented by ESPN and State Farm Insurance.
The Jayhawks also will play in the Battle of Atlantis, set for Nov. 28-30 on Paradise Island in Nassau, Bahamas. The field consists of KU, Southern California, Villanova, Tennessee, Xavier, Wake Forest and UTEP. The eighth team is rumored to be Michigan State, though no announcement has been made.
KU has three players in the 2012-13 rotation expected to return in junior-to-be Naadir Tharpe and sophomores Perry Ellis and Jamari Traylor. Red-shirt freshman Ben McLemore is expected to turn pro.
Next season, Kansas will travel to Colorado in the completion of a home-and-home series. Georgetown and San Diego State will visit Allen Fieldhouse.
It’s also possible KU will play Arkansas in a Big 12/SEC Challenge game in Allen Fieldhouse. The two conferences have yet to officially announce formation of the challenge. Criticism of the event points to the fact four of the 14 SEC teams won’t play in the challenge since there are only 10 Big 12 teams.
The nonconference schedule is normally announced sometime in April or May, with the Big 12 portion of the slate being revealed during the summer.
Skylar Diggins beat Kansas. She scored 27 of the 30 points that cost Kansas the game, and she’s responsible for at least 18 more of Notre Dame’s points from her nine assists.
Without Diggins, I think Notre Dame and Kansas would have been evenly matched, and Kansas might even be better than a Notre Dame without Diggins.
But the same could be said for a Kansas without Angel Goodrich. In the same way that Diggins directs the Fighting Irish, Goodrich directs the Jayhawks. Before Kansas’ practice on Saturday, Monica Engelman said “Angel makes me look good.”
Diggins did more than Goodrich in Sunday’s game, though. Goodrich, Kansas’ all-time assist leader — and that’s for the men and women — scored seven points to accompany her 13 assists. Where Goodrich slacked on the scoring, Diggins didn’t, and she still had almost as many assists as Goodrich.
Goodrich didn’t have the whole package, and Diggins did, and that decided the game.
Big 12/College News
4/1/13, 2:41 PM
Missouri Valley commish Doug Elgin tells me he is pushing for a MVC/Big 12 doubleheader at Sprint Center next season involving Wichita State
Tubby Smith is headed to Texas Tech to try to turn around another wayward program.
Smith was hired Monday, the school announced late Monday night. Associate athletic director Blayne Beal tweeted that a 2 p.m. press conference was scheduled Tuesday to meet the latest man who is coming from a bigger program to try to revive the basketball program in West Texas.
Kansas State basketball coach Bruce Weber announced Monday freshman guard Michael Orris will transfer to another school.
“Michael has decided to leave K-State,” Weber said. “Over the past week, he and I have had several discussions about his future and he thinks this gives him the best chance to be successful. He is a quality young man who I have known for a long time, so I wish him nothing but the best as he moves forward with his life.”
Kentucky announced Monday that Archie Goodwin is entering the NBA Draft, while Kyle Wiltjer and Willie Cauley-Stein return to school for at least another season.
"I'm excited that Willie and Kyle have decided to return for next season," said UK coach John Calipari said. "When we talk about a players-first program, our goal is for each player to reach his dreams. Willie and Kyle believe it is in their best interest to return to Kentucky next season to achieve those dreams, and I fully support their decisions."
Goodwin led Kentucky in scoring this season as a freshman but was still mostly disappointing.
Even so, DraftExpress.com projects him as the 18th pick.
CBS NBA Draft Early Entry Tracker
Southern California has hired Florida Gulf Coast's Andy Enfield to be its new head basketball coach, as SI.com originally reported Monday night.
"My family and I are thrilled to join the Trojan Family and be part of the unparalleled athletic tradition at USC," Enfield said in a statement released by USC. "I am looking forward to bringing an exciting, up-tempo style of play to USC and building the men's basketball brand into one that the fans and basketball community will enjoy and respect."
New Mexico basketball fans were blindsided Saturday by news that coach Steve Alford had been hired away by UCLA.
The Lobos had just wrapped up another winning season that was topped by their second straight Mountain West Conference title and their third NCAA tournament appearance in the past four seasons. And just days ago, Alford signed a new 10-year contract that could have been worth up to $2 million a year.
No one thought Alford was going anywhere.
Not even Alford.
Overnight, it all changed. Lobo Nation is now awash in disappointment.
New Mexico athletic director Paul Krebs is among those feeling the effects of the loss. He said it was clear when he talked to Alford early Saturday that the coach had made up his mind. He said he understood and respected the decision.
“This is a very emotional time,” Krebs said to a room packed with reporters and television cameras.
For some of the players it has yet to sink in. Lobos center Alex Kirk said they needed to come together and clear their heads.
“It’s tough,” Kirk said. “It hit us all really hard. It hit coach hard and it’s going to hit the whole state hard. I think it affects the whole conference.”
Pac-12 coordinator of basketball officials and former NBA referee Ed Rush has been investigated by the Pac-12 for comments made about Arizona coach Sean Miller in meetings that included several Pac-12 referees.
Rush, according to a source within the Pac-12 officiating group, told a group of referees on the Thursday of the Pac-12 tournament in Las Vegas that he would give them $5,000 or a trip to Cancun if they either "rang him up" or "ran him," meaning hit Miller with a technical or toss him out of the game. Rush then reiterated during a Friday morning meeting, according to one referee in attendance, that officials should take similar action against Miller if he did anything on Friday in the Pac-12 semifinals against UCLA.
"He was emphatic about not dealing with him (Miller)," the ref told CBSSports.com. "He made that perfectly clear."
Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott issued a statement to CBSSports.com:
"Based on the review, we have concluded that while Rush made inappropriate comments that he now regrets during internal meetings that referenced rewards, he made the comments in jest and the officials in the room realized they were not serious offers," Scott told CBSSports.com. "Following our review, we have discussed the matter with Rush, taken steps to ensure it does not happen again, and communicated our findings to all of our officials."
Referee Michael Irving -- who sources confirmed was in the room with Rush on Friday -- hit Miller with a controversial technical with 4:37 left in the Pac-12 semifinals against UCLA. The Bruins wound up winning the game, 66-64. Miller was upset about a double-dribble call on Arizona point guard Mark Lyons, arguing that a UCLA player had gotten his hand on the ball before Lyons picked it up.
Miller later claimed he did not direct any profanities at Irving or any of the other officials at the time. The technical was his first of the season.
“The reason I got the technical foul is because I said, ‘He touched the ball. He touched the ball. He touched the ball. He touched the ball. He touched the ball,'" Miller said immediately after the loss.
The NCAA has announced the pool of 10 officials who will work the Final Four.
John Cahill, Tony Greene, Karl Hess, Lee Jones, John Higgins, Randy McCall and Mark Whitehead have all officiated previous Final Fours, while Mike Eades, Doug Simmons and Terry Wymer will have the opportunity to work their first semifinal or championship game.
The officials were recommended by John Adams, the NCAA's director of officiating, and approved Monday by the Division I men's basketball committee.
Three-man crews will work each game with a fourth official on standby. The assignments for the semifinals will be made Saturday morning with the championship officials announced Monday.
College basketball needs an NBA-style hand-check rule to free up ball handlers.
Roughly 10 years ago NBA referees were told to call a foul whenever a defender uses his arms to impede a dribbler. The idea was to open the game's offensive flow and cut back on some of the wrestling matches we used to watch between the New York Knicks and Miami Heat.
The league's coaches went through a tough adjustment, but they did adapt. So did front offices, as the dribble-drive point guard ï¿½ guys like Derrick Rose, Chris Paul and Kyrie Irving ï¿½ became the most prized skill set in the league. Everyone needed one of those, or at least a variation on the theme, as in the Charlotte Bobcats' Kemba Walker.
The consensus around the NBA is that the game is more appealing for this change; more creative passing and less impact of brutish tactics.
That's where the college game needs to consider some form of imitation, because there is a thuggish quality to college defense that isn't visually appealing.
Take Louisville and Marquette, for example. Those teams advanced deep into the NCAA tournament because their coaches are smart enough to test the limits of what the rules allow: Poke, clutch and hip-check the man you're guarding to disrupt offensive flow.
Louisville coach Rick Pitino used to call this his "Mother-in-Law Defense," as in constant pressure and harassment. Not politically correct, but a great description of the intent.
I remember watching the Davidson-Marquette second-round game and thinking the subtext of the Golden Eagles' approach is "commit 30 fouls and hope only 15 are called."
I'm not saying anyone is cheating. Quite the opposite; I'm saying good coaches will always test the limits of the rules and right now that makes the college game less attractive.
Missouri men's basketball coach Frank Haith is joining the Miami-driven effort to throw out a pending infractions case that largely relies on testimony by a convicted felon and has been ridiculed for the mistakes of NCAA investigators.
Attorney Wally Bley said Monday that Haith filed his own legal motion asking the NCAA to dismiss its case against the Tigers coach, joining the University of Miami and three former assistant coaches who have made similar requests.
The NCAA says that Haith, who coached in Coral Gables from 2004 to 2011, gave his assistant coach Jake Morton money to buy booster Nevin Shapiro's silence over alleged recruiting violations, rather than report Shapiro's shakedown attempt to university leaders. Haith is accused of failing to promote an atmosphere of compliance.
NCAA leaders will converge on Atlanta this weekend for the Final Four, the organization's annual celebratory event of not only basketball, but of college athletics as a whole. Mark Emmert and his brass aren't likely to let the hovering cloud of an industry-threatening lawsuit dampen the party, but at least one prominent athletic official thinks it's time to start bracing for the worst.
USC athletic director Pat Haden says he's concerned the NCAA may lose the pending Ed O'Bannon antitrust suit regarding the commercialization of college athletes. He is encouraging conference and national colleagues to start discussing contingency plans.
"We ought to be kept abreast of it at all times, and we ought to prepare for it in case we lose," said Haden, a former practicing attorney and businessman who became an athletic director in 2010. "I haven't followed the case closely, but what I read from legal scholars, it's not a slam dunk for the NCAA."
…"The context of the lawsuit has changed. What do we do if we lost?" Haden said of the NCAA's side. "All of a sudden your television revenue -- let's say it's $20 million a year [for a school]. Now if they win, it's $10 million a year. How do you make your 21 sports work on half the revenue?"
Wayne Selden: Selden looks like he hit the genetic lottery. The Kansas-bound wing is tough and athletic, and he plays with power on the wing. Selden was under control while playing a man's game and thriving in pick and roll. He says the KU coaches want him to be a defensive stopper and slasher. There's no doubt he'll be getting bumped to five-star and move up the rankings.
Who it adds: Kansas, to the best of its abilities, anticipated heavy losses, including McLemore. So Self & Co. went out and signed the No. 3 recruiting class in the country. Four of the top 50 prospects in the Class of 2013 are on their way to Lawrence next season. Wayne Selden is an all-around wing, Joel Embiid is a long-term project shot-blocker, wing Brannen Greene brings long-distance scoring and combo guard Conner Frankamp is one of the best shooters in the nation. KU is also still on the short list for No. 1 recruit Andrew Wiggins.
What it means for next season: Self better fire up the pottery wheel because he has a lot of clay that needs molding. This will be one of the youngest teams Self has ever coached. However, as he always does, he'll have talent, and that's exactly the way this elite cultivator and teacher will approach his team.
Trending: Down. The freshman class is elite, but gone is a ton of senior leadership and likely a lottery-pick underclassman from a team that earned a 1-seed in the tourney. The Jayhawks will still be good, but it will likely take some time. Of course, if Wiggins joins the current recruiting class, that changes things and the Jayhawks could very well be back in Final Four contention.
ESPN Insider ($)
Set your DVR
The 2013 American Family Insurance High School Slam Dunk & 3-Point Championships, which will showcase the dunking and shooting talents of 16 of the nation's top high school seniors, will air at 2 p.m. ET on April 6 on CBS. The program is being taped at Long Forum on the campus of Greater Atlanta Christian School.
The CBS broadcast team includes Tim Brando, Bill Raftery and Lewis Johnson. The program will have numerous encore presentations on CBS Sports Network. Check local listings for dates and times.
American Family Insurance Slam Dunk Championships
Name – High School – College Choice
Jordan Bell – Long Beach Poly (Calif.) – Oregon
Deonte Burton – Vincent (Milwaukee, Wis.) – Marquette
Isaiah Dennis – Eagle's Landing (McDonough, Ga.) – Georgia State
Soma Edo – Berkner (Richardson, Texas) – Fresno State
Anton Gill – Hargrave Military Academy (Chatham, Va.) – Louisville
Craig Hinton* – East Forsyth (Kernersville, N.C.) – VMI
Kuran Iverson – Fishburne Military (Waynesboro, Va.) – Memphis
Kendrick Nunn – Simeon (Chicago) – Illinois
US Marines 3-Point Championship
Name – High School – College Choice
Bryce Alford – La Cueva (Albuquerque, N.M.) – New Mexico
Conner Frankamp – North (Wichita, Kan.) – Kansas
Brannen Greene – Tift County (Tifton, Ga.) – Kansas
Zak Irvin – Hamilton Southeastern (Fishers, Ind.) – Michigan
Nick King – Memphis East (Tenn.) – Memphis
Race Parsons* – South Sevier (Monroe, Utah) – Southern Utah
Matt Thomas – Onalaska (Wis.) – Iowa State
Derrick Walton Jr. – Chandler Park Academy (Harper Woods, Mich.) – Michigan
Andrew Wiggins brushed off the idea that his college decision could be swayed by his McDonald's All-American buddies this week in Chicago.
"We're just hanging out," Wiggins said. "We're just getting to know one another."
The soft-spoken Wiggins didn't give much away about his recruitment Sunday at a McDonald's All-American event at the Ronald McDonald House in Chicago. But it's likely to be on the minds of many Florida State, Kansas, Kentucky and North Carolina fans as the nation's top recruit prepares for the game Wednesday at the United Center.
…Wiggins, the son of former NBA player Mitchell Wiggins, who played for the Bulls his rookie season (1983-84), and Canadian track and field Olympic medalist Marita Payne-Wiggins, said only that he liked all four schools on his visits and that he will make his college decision by May 15.
“I want to get better before I hit the next level,” said Randle, the nation’s No. 2 prospect, according to Rivals.com. “I want to make sure I’m prepared, and those practices will probably be like NBA practices, and everybody there can play.”
Gordon, a high-flying power forward from California, will announce his decision during media day for the All-American games, and UK, Arizona, Oregon and Washington are his four finalists. He said he made up his mind privately about a month ago and has already committed to the coach of the team he chose.
Long thought to be a player most likely to end up in the Pacific-12 Conference, Gordon is considered a significantly longer shot to end up at UK than top-ranked Wiggins, but he said the chance to practice every day at Kentucky makes the Cats attractive.
He said each workout at UK would be essentially like a McDonald’s All American practice “but much more structured” and “10 times more intense.”
“(UK) is so competitive, and it’s obviously a national contender,” he said. “There’s so many people going there that every day would almost be an NBA type practice.”
The presence of Randle, who plays a similar position to Gordon, makes Kentucky more appealing, not less, Gordon said.
“Me and Julius on the same team would be kind of hard to stop,” he said.
Wiggins, the soft-spoken small forward from Huntington (W.Va.) Prep who is down to UK, Kansas, North Carolina and Florida State, has not determined a timetable for his decision and declined to offer many details about his recruitment or what factors will be key in his decision.
But he said has thought about playing with the high school All-Americans UK has assembled.
“I’ve thought about it because that’s one of my choices in deciding where to go,” he said. “It would be a great feeling and be great to play all around other good players.”
Wiggins and Randle are teammates on the McDonald’s East team, and Randle, an skilled ball-handler and passer for a player 6 feet 8 and 250 pounds, set Wiggins up multiple times for baskets in Monday’s practice.
What has been Randle’s recruiting pitch to Wiggins?
“Pass him the ball out here,” Randle said. “Be like, ‘This is what you’ll get next year.’”
…UK signee James Young, a high-scoring wing player from Michigan who is considered a consensus top-10 prospect, said he would welcome Wiggins to the Cats, even though he plays a similar position and would compete with him for minutes.
“That’s what we want,” Young said. “There are a lot of guys on a great team. Like the Miami Heat, they have a lot of guys on a great team. We’ve just got to get our chemistry together.”
Young said he expects competition in UK’s practice next season to be “crazy” as players vie for starting positions. But he also said he would be willing to accept a reserve role if it meant being part of a stronger team.
“If I have to come in off the bench, that’s fine,” he said. “James Harden came off the bench scoring (the Oklahoma City Thunder last year), and I could do the same.”
One of the great college basketball debates arose in locker rooms around the Verizon Center this week. And not long after that, it ended.
The question: "What is the best area of the country for producing college basketball players?"
Miami assistant coach Chris Caputo offered the answer: "Go look up the 2004 All-Met team," said Caputo, who knows the D.C.-Baltimore corridor as well as any coach from his nine years at George Mason. "And don't just look at the first, second, third and fourth team. Look in the honorable mentions."
Sure enough, that year in the Washington area, there were 25 All-Met players on the first through fourth teams. (If you are a basketball junkie, just click here and thank us later.). That list includes plenty of NBA draft picks (Rudy Gay, Roy Hibbert and Jeff Green), household names (Villanova's Scottie Reynolds) and great college players (George Mason's Folarin Campbell).
Missing among those first 25 players? None other than Kevin Durant. One of the three greatest players in the world is buried in the honorable mention agate. (He's listed as a senior, but was actually a sophomore). Former West Virginia star Joe Alexander, the No. 8 pick in the 2008 NBA draft, is also an honorable mention. So are NFL players Branden Albert and Jared Gaither.
Using the last 15 years as a prism, it's hard to argue there's been a better area for producing top-flight basketball players than D.C.-Baltimore. The roll call includes Michael Beasley, Carmelo Anthony, Delonte West, Sam Young, Josh Selby and Will Barton. They compliment Durant, Hibbert, Green, Ty Lawson and Gay to make the D.C.-Baltimore unmatched.
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