Saturday, May 15, 2010
IlliniHQ.com reports today that Illinois assistant Jerrance Howard has been contacted by Kentucky about the opening on the UK staff.
Here is an excerpt from the article:
UK coach John Calipari has a vacant spot on his staff after former assistant Rod Strickland was reassigned to an administrative position. An Illinois assistant who would be entering his fourth season at his alma mater, Howard confirmed by phone this is the second time Kentucky has approached him about a position on its staff. He declined further comment on the situation.
Howard has worked at Kentucky before in an administrative roll under Billy Gillispie.
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- The biggest story in Kentucky today is the commitment of 6-10 Eloy Vargas to UK's 2010 Class; he provides depth and likely gives Kentucky the top-rated recruiting class for 2010
- Kadeem Jack has confirmed that he will choose between Kentucky and North Carolina and is tyring to plan some visits
- Bowling Green's Chane Behanan has been invited to this summer's NBA Top 100 Camp and is now being recruited by Kansas
- Allen County-Scottsville's Caleb Carver is headed to Williams Baptist College
- Mason County's Justin Lang will continue his basketball career at Shawnee State University.
- Rumors that a hire has been made at Covington Holmes are false; they are reportedly down to a final two, but the offer has not been made at this time
Kentucky has landed 6-10 C/PF forward Eloy Vargas according to Evan Daniels at Scout.com.
Coming out of high school in the 2008 class, Vargas was ranked No. 26 overall by Rivals.com. He committed to Florida and played one season then transferred to Miami-Dade College (JUCO).
After a season at the JUCO level, Vargas is headed back to the Southeastern Conference - this time as a Kentucky Wildcat.
Vargas averaged 25 points and 15 rebounds last season at Miami-Dade.
Vargas in action:
The trial is underway in a fraud suit against former Kentucky head coach Tubby Smith and several big name witnesses have already testified on behalf of Smith's accuser, Jimmy Williams.
Here is an excerpt from StarTribune.com:
Former Gophers star and NBA Hall of Famer Kevin McHale, former Gophers coach Jim Dutcher and former U.S. Rep. Jim Ramstad testified as character witnesses for Jimmy Williams on the first day of the trial of his lawsuit against Smith in Hennepin County District Court.
Williams claims that he was the victim of fraud and negligent representation when on the strength of an offer to be Smith's assistant, he quit his job at Oklahoma State in 2007, only to be left high and dry. The suit says Athletic Director Joel Maturi unfairly vetoed his hiring because of decades-old NCAA violations.
The suit seeks damage that total more than $50,000.
Friday, May 14, 2010
Either Rick Pitino is a huge fan of St. John's basketball, he loves Steve Lavin or he likes to screw up the preseason conference polls.
The Louisville head coach submitted his Big East preseason coaches' poll ballot yesterday and he has revealed that he gave his first place vote to St. John's.
That is the same St. John's squad that finished 13th in the conference last season, changed coaches this spring and doesn't exactly return a powerhouse of talent.
Pitino stated afterwards, "I was debating between St.John's, Pittsburgh, Villanova and Cincinnati, but I didn't want to put that on Mic (Cronin) so I went with St. John's."
My Thoughts: Uh, Rick, Lou Carnesecca, Chris Mullin and Mark Jackson won't be walking through those doors anytime soon. Maybe Peter Robert Casey has a master plan for Big East dominance?
Here is an excerpt:
North Carolina has recently inquired about Vargas, but he is looking primarily at Kentucky, Arizona and Seattle. He didn't make his Seattle visit earlier this week, which is never a good sign. Vargas was supposed to visit Arizona this weekend, but he is also scheduled to be on Kentucky's campus today. Right now, all signs point toward Kentucky for Vargas.
Landing Vargas would push Kentucky past Memphis into the top spot in the national team recruiting rankings for 2010.
As a 2008 prospect, Vargas was the No. 26 ranked prospect in the Rivals150. He wasn't healthy, and consequently struggled during his freshman year at Florida. He transferred to Miami Dade Community College, where he hit his stride. Vargas and averaged 25 points and 15 rebounds per game.
DiNunno spent the prior two years at Northern Illinois University. The Chicago, Ill., native started 21 of 30 games for the Huskies in 2009-10 while averaging 7.0 points and 3.0 assists per game. DiNunno, a 5-11 guard, recorded his first career double-double with season highs in points (21) and assists (10) in NIU’s win over Western Michigan on Jan. 13.
“Mike is a very skilled guard who can score and distribute the ball at this level,” Neubauer said. “We are looking forward to working with him during his redshirt season and believe he will have a positive impact on EKU basketball.”
McDonald, a native of Houston, Texas played for the University of New Orleans last year. The 6-0 guard started the final 15 contests in 2009-10 and tallied a career-high 24 points in a win at Louisiana-Monroe on Feb. 18. McDonald averaged 8.3 ppg this past season while leading New Orleans in three-pointers made (46) and three-point shooting (38.7 percent).
“Devin is a proven Division I guard,” Neubauer said. “He has shown he can shoot from behind the arc at a very high rate.”
Due to NCAA transfer rules, DiNunno will have to sit out the 2010-11 season. However, McDonald will be able to play immediately because New Orleans is making the transition from Division I to Division III. DiNunno has two seasons of eligibility remaining while McDonald has one season left to play at EKU.
The Colonels concluded the 2009-10 season with a 20-13 overall record and tied for third in the Ohio Valley Conference. EKU advanced to the postseason for the second time in five years under Neubauer with an invitation to the College Basketball Invitational.
John Calipari has given the Kentucky fans exactly what they asked for this morning - a definitive statement that he will be Kentucky's head coach next season.
Here is Calipari's post on Twitter:
UKCoachCalipari I want to address this with the Big Blue Nation one last time, I will be coaching at Kentucky next year. Now let's finish what we started!
And on Facebook:
John Calipari Good morning! As you know, I've said many times that I've got the best job in the country. Still the speculation runs wild and I can't stop that. I want to address this with the Big Blue Nation one last time, I will be coaching at Kentucky next year. Now let's finish what we started!
In a guest blog for Jeff Goodman of FoxSports.com, Austin Rivers said he might take a look at Kentucky.
Rivers is a 6-3 shooting guard in the 2011 class. Rivals.com ranks him No. 8 overall on the Rivals150 List for 2011.
Here is an excerpt of Rivers' blog:
I’d like to go to North Carolina and visit in the next couple of weeks once I’m done with school. That’ll be easier for me – once exams and everything are done. I’m also looking at Kansas. They’ve gotten in the picture lately and have been talking to my coaches. I might also look at Kentucky with the success that (John) Calipari has had with his players.
But I want to take four visits so I can look at a variety of schools and get as much info as I can before making a decision.
I still like Florida and am definitely still considering them among the five schools I’m thinking about right now.
Rivers is widely considered to be a Duke lean at this point. He originally committed to Florida but chose to re-open his recruitment. He will likely consider the schools he mentioned but the smart money is on the Blue Devils.
Thursday, May 13, 2010
Azubuike will have to use crutches for about a week before starting rehabilitation.
He appeared in only nine games this past season, averaging 13.9 points and 4.6 rebounds a game before he was sidelined because of the left knee injury.
Azubuike, who has played parts of four seasons with Golden State, has averaged 10.6 points in his career. Earlier this month, Azubuike exercised the player option in his contract for the 2010-11 season.
- Tyler Barber from Obion County Central High School in Troy, Tennessee: Barber is a 6-0 shooting guard who was named to the All-District 13-AA team as a junior and senior. Barber averaged 21 points per game as a senior and 10.6 points as a junior with a high game of 24 points with 8 three-pointers vs. Dyer County High School in February, 2009.
- Zach Chatman from Milan (Tennessee) High School : The son of Mozella Williamson, Chatman led Milan in assists, averaging 3.2 per game with highs of 8 assists in two games. He averaged 5.5 points per game with a high of 15 points, recorded 125 defensive deflections and received his team's Outstanding Point Guard award. Chatman also was named Milan's Outstanding Defensive Player after his junior season with 42 steals and 83 deflections. He was a three-year starter.
- Mark Vaughn from Milan (Tennessee) High School : Vaughn,the son of Rick and Missy Vaughn, led Milan in scoring and rebounding, averaging 16.3 points and 9.0 rebounds, and also averaged 2.2 steals and 2.8 assists. He earned team Most Valuable Player honors and All-West Tennessee honors.
Hudson, a native of Bowling Green, Ky., was an All-Region guard at Southeastern Illinois College, where he helped lead the team to a 52-12 record over two seasons. In 2008, Hudson was named the Region 24 Player of the Year as he averaged 14.4 points per game and helped lead SIC (28-7) to the national quarterfinals of the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Tournament. He was named an All-Region player again in 2009 after averaging 12.3 points and 4.6 assists as a sophomore. He shot 40 percent from 3-point range.
"We bring into our program an experienced point guard, a guy that has played at the highest level in junior college and in one of the most underrated leagues in Division I in the Missouri Valley Conference. He's a guy that brings success with him," CU head coach Keith Adkins said.
Photo: Evansville Athletics
Laswell scored 1,623 career points (third all time at Paoli) and dished out a program-best 450 assists for Paoli High School.
During his senior year at Paoli, Laswell averaged 22.4 points per game and was a three time All-Patoka Lake Athletic Conference selection. Along with being a "Hoosier Basketball Magazine" top-100 pick, Laswell was also selected to play in this year's Indiana East-West All-Star Game.
Lindsey Wilson coach Paul Peck is most excited about Laswell's knowledge of the game and how he can use that to make a team better.
"He makes a team a formidable force," said Peck. "He understands the game."
Laswell also adds a physical presence to the Blue Raiders since he is also a top player on the gridiron as well. He led the Paoli football team to an undefeated regular season and regional title as a dual-threat option quarterback.
Last season, Laswell rushed for 1,267 yards and 16 touchdowns and passed for over 1,400 yards. Laswell also leads Paoli on the diamond where he is a hard-throwing pitcher and position player for the baseball team.
That toughness is something Peck says will be valuable to his team next season.
"Our league (Mid-South Conference) is very physical," affirmed Peck. "Logan is going to help us tremendously. He's the type of player we didn't have last year, he sees the whole court and makes everyone better.
"He is exactly what we have been looking for."
The small-town feel of Columbia and facility additions to the Lindsey Wilson campus are what led Laswell to his decision.
"I really liked the campus on my visit," said Laswell. "It's kind of small, like Paoli, and it just suited me. I don't think I would like a great big place. I'm just a country boy at heart."
"I'm excited about the opportunity and am grateful to coach Peck for the chance to join the Blue Raiders."
You can drop 6-7 forward Kyle Cain from the list of prospective Kentucky forwards in 2010.
Cain, who has been granted a release from Rhode Island, has stated that his list is Alabama, Arizona State, Illinois and West Virginia.
An ESPN.com article acknowledges his lack of interest in playing at Kentucky:
"Kentucky called me and was interested in me coming for a visit," said Cain, who averaged a double-double last season. "Any player would be excited that Kentucky would call them. I just know I'm not the type of player that Kentucky goes after.
"I'm an emerging player. I can be a star in college in two or three years. Kentucky goes after McDonald's All-Americans every year. I'm a player who works hard for everything. It's not that they don't work hard, but I'm not their type."
Photo: Scott Powers for ESPNChicago.com
More recruiting info:
Here is an excerpt from The Birmingham News:
Barkley said, "No. He's too immature. He's got plenty of talent. It won't come down to talent. It'll come down to maturity. He's a very, very talented kid. From a maturity standpoint, he's not ready for the NBA.''
What about another early entry, Birmingham native and Kentucky freshman Eric Bledsoe?
"He's more of a question mark,'' Barkley said. "I don't know enough about his maturity, but he's not a slam-dunk NBA player.''
Former Campbellsville star Aaron Wyatt, who now plays professionally in Palestine, recently paid a visit to Buckingham Elementary School in Berlin, Maryland.
Wyatt was a Buckingham Elementary student in the early 1990s.
Here is an excerpt about Wyatt's visit:
There was cheering and action in the gym at Buckingham Elementary School as fourth-graders bounced basketballs and aimed at the net, under the instruction of professional hoops player Aaron Wyatt.
He had them on their feet making circles with extended arms. "Get loose. Get loose," he coached, then switched to jumping jacks.
They formed two lines and, alternating sides, ran to the basket and took a shot.
"I want you to lay the ball up ... Run, run, run. Lay the ball up," the former Buckingham student told the 28 students. Balls hit, missed, flew over the basket. There was applause, looks of concentration, shouts of "all right" from teachers and principal Terry Smith.
"Good try. Good try," said Wyatt, who plays for the team Bir Zeit in Palestine.
"Come on. Come on," Smith encouraged from the sidelines.
I have just been informed that a decision will likely be made on the Western Kentucky assistant coaching position sometime next week.
Kentucky's Tony Delk interviewed for the job earlier this week and the next person to interview will be Pittsburgh assistant/video coordinator Rasheen Davis.
Davis is from Bronx (NY) and played college basketball for St. Thomas Aquinas, an NCAA DII program.
He served as an assistant at Louisville in 2007-09.
Here is his bio from Pitt
UK has released a statement that the move was made upon Strickland's own request so that he would not be forced to travel as much as he has the last year.
There has been much speculation that Kentucky would like to add former Louisville standout Kenny Payne as an assistant coach.
Payne is well known as a solid recruiter and has a background with John Calipari.
In addition, there is a growing thought that Payne has a positive connection with UK recruit Terrence Jones, who is currently wavering between Washington and Kentucky.
Payne has stated to Rick Bozich of the Courier Journal that he has not heard from Kentucky and has "no interest" in joining Calipari's staff. He stated that he is happy at Oregon.
LEXINGTON, Ky. – The University of Kentucky men's basketball department will undergo changes to its administrative staff for the upcoming 2010-11 season, head coach John Calipari announced Thursday.
At his request, assistant coach Rod Strickland will take on an administrative role in operations to reduce travel requirements. The search for a new assistant coach will begin immediately.
“Rod Strickland has been a vital part of our success here at Kentucky and helped set a foundation for our program,” Calipari said. “He will continue to be an integral part of our future successes in a non-coaching capacity. We expect other administrative staff changes as opposing schools fill their vacant basketball staff positions.”
In addition to his current role of chief operating officer, UK Deputy Athletics Director Rob Mullens will now serve as the day-to-day administrator for men's basketball.
“As we continue to pursue the opportunities that go along with being the winningest program in the history of college basketball, it is important that our department provides the administrative support to help it run as efficiently as possible,” UK Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart said. “Rob Mullens has provided Kentucky Athletics with first-class, professional support in all areas during the last eight years. Working with Wildcat basketball on a daily basis will allow him to help us keep pace with the ever-changing world of college athletics.”
Jessica Camerato of Weei.com has a tremendous article out this morning about former Kentucky guard Rajon Rondo.
Camerato writes that Rondo's Boston teammates saw his potential stardom from the start.
Here are some excerpts of what Rondo's teammates are saying:
Kendrick Perkins: “I think right now, he’s the best player on our team. Without Rondo, nothing goes. Pretty much we’ve got to play him the whole game because he just runs the whole team. Without him, we’d be dead.”
Sebastian Telfair: “I remember him having these long arms. I was like, ‘Man, he’s got the longest arms I’ve ever seen.’ He has the ability to pick up the ball 94 feet with those long arms, being so fast and being so quick. It was one of the things that I was like, ‘He can dominate in this league with those qualities.’ ”
Brian Scalabrine: “I thought he was special. One drill that we used, Doc used him in a pick-and-roll drill, as in our starters need to stop him. … Literally, he could do what he wanted. He pretty much was scoring on three of our guys, or making the right play, or dumping it off, or getting to the basket. This is a pick-and-roll league, and for a player to be that good at the pick-and-roll is just amazing for us to get him where we got him.”
Leon Powe: “He knew where everybody was supposed to be at once, and I was like, ’That’s amazing for a young player.’ He knew how to talk to everybody. If somebody was getting mad in a game and getting hot, he calmed them down. Just point guard stuff that’s really nice for a young player.”
Tony Allen: “He’s a 100 percent team player. He always tries to get his guys involved first and whenever he feels like he wants to take that turn or when he wants to score, passing, he just picks his poison whenever he wants to let it out.”
Gary Parrish of CBSSports.com reported earlier today that Kentucky has inquired about 6-11 forward Arnett Moultrie, a former standout at UTEP.
Here is an excerpt from Parrish:
Most high-major programs in the south -- Tennessee, Memphis, Kentucky, Texas, etc., -- have inquired about the 6-foot-11 forward since the Memphis native withdrew from the NBA Draft last week and announced he would not return to UTEP. And though Moultrie's hometown school remains in play, developments over the past 48 hours suggest Mississippi State and Arkansas have made strong pushes and positioned themselves well.
Interestingly, Parrish also cites sources who say UTEP might not release Moultrie to Conference-USA schools, Mississippi State or Arkansas.
Moultrie will be required to sit out a season and would not be eligible until 2011.
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Wednesday, May 12, 2010
Strege spent the past six years on the staff at Quincy University in Quincy, Ill. Last season, Strege helped the Hawks finish 23-9 overall while climbing to as high as No. 10 in the Division II national polls. Quincy earned a spot in the 2010 NCAA Division II tournament and advanced to the Sweet 16 for the first time in school history. In 2007-08, Strege (pronounced STREGG-ee) was promoted to Quincy’s associate head coach.
“Luke is a young coach who I have known for several years,” Neubauer said. “He is passionate about winning as evidenced by his seven trips to the NCAA tournament in 10 years as a coach. His presence as a recruiter and basketball coach will be felt immediately. I’m proud of the first five years at EKU and hope Luke will be a force as we go forward.”
Strege began his collegiate coaching career in 2000-01 as a graduate assistant at the University of Georgia. He then spent two more years as a graduate assistant at Western Kentucky University (2001-03). Strege’s three seasons at Georgia and WKU resulted in three trips to the NCAA Division I tournament.
Before moving on to Quincy, Strege served the 2003-04 season as an assistant men’s basketball coach at Towson University in Baltimore, Md.
Strege was the director of operations and basketball assistant for the International Basketball Association’s Rochester Skeeters from June 1999 to March 2000. He was also the operations and basketball intern for the Continental Basketball Association’s LaCrosse Bobcats from October 1998 to May 1999.
Strege graduated from the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse in 1999 with a bachelor’s degree in marketing.
Victor, who plays for Vive Menorca, averaged 12.2 points, 2.9 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 1.4 steals in 38 games this season. He was 31-83 (37.3%) from long range on the season.
He was also named to the All-Imports Team.
All-Spanish LEB Gold First Team:
G: Paolo Quinteros (186-79) of CAI Zaragoza
G/F: Cuthbert Victor (196-83) of Vive Menorca
F: Darren Phillip (201-78) of CAI Zaragoza
C/F: Jakim Donaldson (203-83) of La Laguna
C: Nedzad Sinanovic (221-83) of Unicaja
G/F: Adam Hess (201-81) of CB Tarragona
G/F: Cuthbert Victor (196-83) of Vive Menorca
F: Ryan Humphrey (203-79) of Leon
F: Zach Morley (203-83) of Burgos
C/F: Jakim Donaldson (203-83) of La Laguna
PIKEVILLE, Ky. – A pair of transfers are the latest signees of the Pikeville College men’s basketball staff.
Quincy Hankins-Cole and Yan Moukoury have signed scholarship agreements with the Bears and head coach Kelly Wells.
“These two young men will be outstanding additions not only to our program but also to our school,” said Wells. “We like what we’ve seen out of them both on the court and off and think they will help us reach our goal of the national tournament.”
Hankins-Cole is a 6-8, 240-pound forward who played last season at the University of Nebraska. He averaged just under 10 minutes a game for the Huskers, scoring 4.0 points and pulling down 2.4 rebounds per game. He had a season high 15 points against Jackson State and again against Southern Utah.
Prior to that, Hankins-Cole was an All-FCCAA selection at Polk Community College in Lakeland, Fla. As a sophomore he averaged 15.8 points and 12.3 rebounds to be named both all-conference and to the statewide FCCAA team, covering four community college leagues in Florida.
When he left Polk, he was listed as the 42nd best junior college player in the country by the Web site www.JucoJunction.com.
Maukoury, a 6-7 forward from Baton Rouge, La., spent two seasons at Houston in Conference-USA before playing last year at Northern Kentucky. At Northern, he averaged 3.3 points and 1.8 rebounds for the Norse, starting four games and averaging 13.7 minutes per game.
At Christian Life Academy, he led his team to back-to-back Class A state titles, averaging 17 points, seven rebounds and seven assists as a senior to earn All-State, All-Metro and All-District honors as his team posted a 33-7 record.
Source: Pikeville College
The NCAA released national attendance figures today and Kentucky averaged 24,111 - almost 2,000 more per game than second place Syracuse.
Louisville came in at a surprising No. 3 by averaging 19,397 per game.
Here is an excerpt of the NCAA release:
NCAA men’s basketball attendance for the 2009-10 season surpassed 32 million, the fourth-highest total in history.
Attendance for all three NCAA divisions combined equaled 32,820,701. The record is 33,396,316, set during the 2007-08 season.
Division I attendance in 2010 was also fourth all-time at 27,539,459. The Division I record was set in 2008 at 28,135,901. Division II totaled 2,837,993 fans, while Division III had 2,008,222, just short of last year’s mark and the second-most in that division since 1987.
A record 334 Division I teams averaged 5,245 fans in 5,251 games or sessions this season. That’s down a little more than 133 fans per game from 2009.
For 14 of the last 15 seasons and the fifth straight year, Kentucky led the nation in home attendance average at 24,111 fans per game. Syracuse was second at 22,152. One of those two schools has led the nation in each of the past 34 seasons. Kentucky’s total home attendance of 433,989 was the best for a school since 1993.
For all-game attendance – including home, road and neutral-site games – Kentucky was tops as 724,145 fans watched the Wildcats over 38 games. Ten teams played in front more than a half million fans this season.
With the win, the Celtics take a 3-2 series lead back to Boston and have a chance to close the series out at home on Thursday night.
Rondo exploded in the third quarter and finished with 16 points and 7 assists.
Ray Allen led all scorers with 25 points, including 6-9 from long range. Paul Pierce added a double-double with 21 points and 11 rebounds.
Veteran Shaquille O'Neal led Cleveland with 21 points on 7-11 shooting. LeBron James, who had an off-night, scored 15 points and was only 3-14 from the field.
Following the game, rumors were started that Cleveland might target Kentucky head coach John Calipari to coach the team next season. Adding fuel to the fire was the fact that Calipari was in attendance at the game - sitting directly behind the Cavaliers' bench.
Ric Bucher, an ESPN NBA analyst, posted on Twitter last night:
RicBucher Two NBA teams fighting over Calipari. This belongs in SI's "Sign of the Apocalypse" section. When did he become more than a great recruiter?
RicBucher To clarify Calipari remark: I'm going off ESPN colleagues postulating that Cle needs to hire Cal before Chi does in order to get LeBron.
Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports added:
WojYahooNBA John Calipari sitting near Cavs bench with agent, Leon Rose, who he shares with LeBron. I'm sure Mike Brown is thrilled to see Cal hover.
WojYahooNBA As job security goes, the CEO of BP is feeling better about things than Mike Brown right now.
This morning, a host of articles have appeared that are speculating about Calipari and the Cavaliers:
- Yahoo! Sports says John Calipari's presence at the game fuels NBA speculation:
One week after the first report linking him to Chicago and four days after an NBA official suggested Cleveland should hire him to increase their chances of resigning LeBron, there was Calipari seated courtside at the Cavs-Celtics playoff game in Cleveland. Seated next to him on one side was LeBron's agent, Leon Rose. Seated a few seats away on the other was Cavs owner Dan Gilbert.
The official reason for Calipari's presence was to accompany the family who won Cavs playoff tickets in Kentucky's Haiti telethon a few months ago, but the sight of him alongside Rose certainly raised eyebrows. Of course, the major reason an NBA team would have interest in Calipari is in hopes that his strong relationship with LeBron and mutual confidante World Wide Wes would help a franchise lure professional basketball's most prized free agent this summer.
- USA Today says that Calipari and LeBron James are now in the rumor mill:
Last month there was talk of Kentucky coach John Calipari taking over the Chicago Bulls.
He denied interest in joining former player Derrick Rose and a few days later he was talking about a new contract with UK.
Now the rumor is Calipari getting hired in Cleveland to keep LeBron James in Cleveland.
- Pikeville College has announced the following newcomers:
Eric Stidham, Buckhorn
Logan Hill, Burgin
Chris Noble, Perry Central
Cody Hunter, Rowan County
Josh Whitaker, Hazard
Tyler Newsome, Shelby Valley
Dieb Gross, Pike Central
Chris Barlow, Northern Virginia CC
Shane Pressley, Council HS, VA
Derek Hess, Grundy HS, VA
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
Hayes states that Cousins became his favorite player in college basketball last season, mostly because of the way the Kentucky freshman handled the harassment of Mississippi State fans late in the SEC season.
Excerpt of article:
DeMarcus Cousins became my favorite college basketball player this season for the way he gracefully and hilariously handled a bunch of Mississippi State students blowing up his cell phone with all kinds of taunts last season after it was leaked online.
But reactions to Cousins are mixed, to say the least. Some people feel he's too volatile or immature or emotional to take a chance on. Last week, a little debate on him broke out in the comments, with frequent commenter natron3030 expressing his belief that Cousins and UK teammate John Wall are "head cases."
BOWLING GREEN, Ky. -- Western Kentucky University senior AJ Slaughter has already worked out with nearly a dozen NBA teams and his agent, Lance Young, expects that number to rise to as many as 17 in advance of the 2010 NBA Draft on June 24 at Madison Square Garden in New York.
"Going into his senior year, he certainly had some buzz, but I think after his performance at the Portsmouth Invitational last month, he really put himself on the map," said Young.
Slaughter averaged 16.0 ppg and 3.0 apg at the highly-regarded 58th Annual Portsmouth Invitational Tournament in early April. Held in Portsmouth, Va., the NBA pre-draft event features the top 64 college seniors who compete in a four-day, 12-game tournament in front of representatives from every NBA franchise.
Playing for the Norfolk Sports Club team, Slaughter finished in the top 10 in the league in scoring (T-8th) and three-point field goal percentage (9th), connecting on 5-of-12 attempts for 41.7 percent. Averaging 25.3 minutes per game, the Shelbyville, Ky. product was named to the prestigious 12-member All-Tournament Team.
"I have heard some teams make a comparison of AJ to Dana Barros who played with the Boston Celtics," commented Young. Barros played 13 seasons in the NBA from 1989-90 to 2001-02 as a member of the Seattle Sonics, the Philadelphia 76ers, the Boston Celtics, and the Detroit Pistons.
"Most teams want to see AJ get a little bigger, and for the past month he has been working out at the St. Vincent Sports Performance Center in Indianapolis where he has put on five pounds of muscle and he is loving it."
Jerry Meyer of Rivals.com was asked in his Mailbag feature: How does Marquis Teague's game compare to John Wall's game?
Here is an excerpt of Meyer's answer:
Both are explosive athletes who thrive at getting to the rim. They handle the ball well with either hand and are creative and consistent finishers at the rim. They have a feel for passing the ball on the move and know how to create scoring opportunities for teammates. Both are speedsters with the ball in the half court, but it is tough to say that any player is as fast with the basketball as Wall.
The primary difference between the two is that Wall is longer. His length makes him a more dangerous defender and rebounder. On the other hand, Teague is a better outside shooter than Wall. I do expect, however, Wall to dramatically improve as an outside shooter. I think Wall's outside shot will get better, just as Derrick Rose improved his perimeter shooting.
In the end, Teague might not be as good as Wall was at Kentucky - but he won't be far behind. Basketball fans across the country will enjoy watching Teague - just like they enjoyed watching Wall.
My Thoughts: A player that rivals John Wall on the court? Yeah, that's something for Kentucky fans to be excited about.
Here is an excerpt from WKYT.com:
According to the warrant, Mackey attacked the victim, threatened him with a small black pistol and robbed him of $520.
Sheriff's deputies say when they tried to serve the warrant, Mackey ran.
He was later caught by deputies.
In addition to the robbery and assault charges, Mackey now faces another assault charge for hitting a police officer, escape and criminal mischief.
Here are Katz's thoughts on UK:
13. Kentucky: This could be a reach. I don't dispute that argument. John Wall, DeMarcus Cousins, Patrick Patterson, Eric Bledsoe and Daniel Orton are all gone. You might be asking why I'm not punting Kentucky from my top 25 all together? Well, the recent history of UK and that of John Calipari at Memphis tells us not to assume demise when a reshuffling of talent occurs. Sure there is a talent drop off, but the return of key role players like Darius Miller and DeAndre Liggins and a stellar recruiting class led by Brandon Knight, Enes Kanter (assuming he doesn't run into a major suspension for amateur issues), Stacey Poole and Doron Lamb means the Cats will be able to compete with any team in the country. The newcomers don't have as much star power as this past season's freshman class, but the talent is still headline quality. Kanter is the key. If he is good to go by SEC play at the latest, Big Blue should be right in the thick of the race.
The tryouts will be at 5pm on Saturday, May 22nd at Pikeville High School in Pikeville, Kentucky. For complete details and more information, email Tom Hamilton at firstname.lastname@example.org or call Jerry Boggs at 606 213 2452 or Tom Hamilton at 606 213 2461 or visit www.eastkyenergy.com or http://www.abalive.com/.
He currently has Kentucky ranked No. 18 and lists Louisville as a team to watch.
Goodman has Washington at No. 8 and explained on Twitter that the reasoning is the assumption that Terrence Jones will stay with his commitment to the Huskies.
Duke, the defending national champs, are ranked No. 1 in Goodman's poll, followed by: Purdue, Michigan State, Ohio State and Kansas State.
Here are Goodman's thoughts on Kentucky:
Record: 35-3 (Elite Eight)
Lose: John Wall, DeMarcus Cousins, Patrick Patterson, Eric Bledsoe, Daniel Orton, Ramon Harris, Perry Stevenson
Key Returnees: Darius Miller, DeAndre Liggins, Darnel Dodson, Jon Hood
Newcomers: Brandon Knight, Enes Kanter, Doron Lamb, Stacey Poole
Talk about a dramatic change in personnel. The Wildcats lost five guys to the NBA draft, but UK has reloaded with a terrific freshman class led by Knight – one of the most talented guards in the country. The key, however, could be Kanter – a 6-9 Turkish kid who could be a force in the paint.
Centre's basketball tradition is very impressive as well with Final 4 trips in 1979 and 1989. Centre has a six year run of winning 78% of their games, four consecutive SCAC Regular Season Championships and three out of four SCAC Tournament Championships leading to four straight NCAA bids. In 2008, Centre had the longest winning streak in all of Division III with 25 straight wins..
Taylor has been an integral part of the Wildcats' success, being a 4 year starter.
As a Senior, Taylor averaged 12.1 points per game and 7.1 rebounds per game.
He had a very impressive state tournament; from the field, Taylor was 24-36 (67%), 13 of 15 from the free throw line (87%) and averaged 6.75 rebounds per game. In Valley's championship game against Ballard, Taylor had 17 points, 9 rebounds, and went 7-7 from the free throw line.
Taylor ends his career at Shelby Valley as the all time leading rebounder, single
season leading rebounder (2009) and a member of the 1,000 point club. During the 2010 season, he was selected to the All Tournament Team in the WYMT Classic, the All “A” Classic, the 59th District, the 15th Region Tournament,and the Sweet 16 Tournament. He was also named to the 2010 Associated Press Honorable Mention All-State Team.
Taylor is an excellent student with an ACT score of 27 and a 4.0 GPA. He is a National Honor Society member and a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes at Shelby Valley. He has attended several FCA Camps, including two of their summer Leadership Camps.
Coach Greg Mason : “We are very excited that Taylor has decided to join us at Centre. What he and his teammates have accomplished at Shelby Valley is beyond amazing. Taylor is a winner, as seen by his big game in the State Championship against Ballard. And for anyone who has ever met Taylor, everyone understands the type of young man that Centre College is getting. Taylor just has a knack for the game, a very high basketball IQ, and the more I watch him, the more I like him.”
“Centre is getting a very tough and smart player in Taylor. He will be their blue collar player who does all the little things that championship teams need. Taylor will do great there and we wish him the best of luck” said Shelby Valley Coach Jason Booher.
Delk, who helped lead Kentucky to a national championship in 1996, currently serves on John Calipari's staff at his Alma mater.
Delk's Career information:
NBA Draft: 1996 / 16th overall; Selected by the Charlotte Hornets Pro career: 1996–2008
Charlotte Hornets (1996–1997)
Golden State Warriors (1997–1999)
Sacramento Kings (1999–2000)
Phoenix Suns (2000–2002)
Boston Celtics (2002–2003)
Dallas Mavericks (2003–2004)
Atlanta Hawks (2004–2006)
Detroit Pistons (2006)
Carolina Giants (2008)
Monday, May 10, 2010
Dale Brown's dream of bringing his Dillard University team into Rupp Arena appears to finally be nearing a reality.
Dillard, a small NAIA program in New Orleans, will tentatively visit Rupp Arena on November 5 or 7 according to Alan Cutler of LEX18.
Brown's program is in a struggle for survival following the destruction suffered by the university during Hurricane Katrina. He relies heavily on exhibition games and the paydays they offer.
Kentucky's other exhibition opponent will be Pikeville College.
The Bears, led by head coach Kelly Wells, are tentatively scheduled to visit Rupp Arena on November 1.
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