Saturday, June 4, 2011
Former University of Kentucky star Gerald Fitch will remain with Unicaja Malaga in Spain's top-level ACB League.
The team re-signed Fitch following a successful transfer from Turkey's Aliaga Petkim.
In 18 ACB games, Fitch averaged 15.0 points, 4.4 rebounds and 2.3 assists. In Euroleague action, he put in 8.7 points, 4.0 rebounds and 2.0 assists.
Fitch has enjoyed a successful professional career that has taken him around the globe, including flirtation with the NBA before landing overseas.
University of Kentucky head coach John Calipari has given the second part of his annual state of the program.
In the latest edition, he discusses his four NBA draft hopefuls.
Here is an excerpt:
Josh has continued to impress teams with his skill level and understanding of the game. His workouts have been going well and I could definitely see a late-round team like Miami (where Josh worked out on Wednesday) grabbing him. Josh brings a great mentality with him to his next team – he’s been both a reserve and starter and he goes about his job with a blue collar attitude that championship organizations love. Every team is looking for a big man who can rebound and make open shots.
This one is so hard for me because as more and more people see what we saw all year at the Joe Craft Center with Enes, I can’t help but think how much more special last season could have been if our big teenager had been able to join us for our Final Four run! He just turned 19 a few weeks ago. There is a strong possibility that Enes could be the No. 1 overall pick. If it were my decision, Enes is who I would pick at No. 1. Here’s why: he can truly be a dominating kind of player; he can be a Karl Malone-type big man. As the league gets smaller (size-wise) his ability to dominate his position will grow. He’s got a position and a true size. If he doesn’t go No. 1 he will go shortly thereafter and the teams that passed on him will look back and wince at that decision. I’m biased because I love him, but I’m also talking in pragmatic terms.
Brandon’s work ethic has never been in doubt but teams have now been able to see just how high his skill level is when they get him in for workouts. They said at the Sacramento workout (here on YouTube), he looked like a machine. He’s bigger, faster and more skilled than any of these teams thought. And the kicker in all this becomes the one-on-one meetings teams have had with Brandon. One team even said it was the best meeting they’ve ever had with a prospect. Without knowing particulars, I imagine his psychological tests will be off the charts also. He will be drafted within the first 25 minutes of the draft. I’ve made one comment to all the teams, whatever you think his upside is within three or four years, he will become that because of his work ethic.
DeAndre Liggins – Tony Allen. DeAndre Liggins – Tony Allen. DeAndre Liggins – Tony Allen. get the point? What DeAndre will add to a team, physically, defensively and in terms of toughness is excatly what happened with the Memphis Grizzlies and Tony Allen this year. What everybody was surprised about was his ability to make an open NBA 3-pointer. What they are seeing is that he can guard the 1, 2 or 3; will scrap like crazy and if he’s open, he’s making that 3 – just like he did vs. UNC. His workouts have gone well and if he doesn’t get picked in the latter part of the 1st round, he will be gone by the middle of the 2nd round.
Former Dayton guard Juwan Staten announced on Twitter today that he will continue his college career at West Virginia University:
JuwanStaten3 After this long wait I have finally decided where I will finish out my collegiate basketball career...West Virginia University!
Staten had also considered the University of Louisville.
Former University of Kentucky player Rodrick Rhodes has applied for the head coaching job at Owsley County High School.
Rhodes told Alan Cutler of Lex18.com that he would find it an honor and privilege to coach in Kentucky.
Here is an excerpt:
"I would absolutely love, and find it an honor to coach in the state of Kentucky," says Rhodes.
"I would actually find it an honor and privilege to coach in the rich state of Kentucky."
Rhodes played for Kentucky from 1992-1995. He scored 1,209 career points before transferring to USC after his junior season.
He has various coaching experience, including jobs at Seton Hall and UMass.
Former University of Kentucky forward DeAndre Liggins and Morehead State guard Demonte Harper will work out for the Indiana Pacers on Monday.
Liggins and Harper will be joined by Iman Shumpert (Georgia Tech), Brad Wanamaker (Pittsburgh), Jake Kelly (Indiana State) and Malcolm Lee (UCLA).
Liggins will be at Urban Nation in the Fayette Mall in Lexington tomorrow from 12:00-2:00 p.m.
He will then appear in Florence, Kentucky from 3:30-5:30 p.m. at The Kentucky Shop. The Kentucky Shop is located just off Mall Road.
Former University of Kentucky forward DeAndre Liggins worked out for the Charlotte Bobcats today.
You can watch some footage of Liggins working out here.
Liggins also spoke to the media following the workout. In the interview, he confirmed that he will work out for the Indiana Pacers on Monday.
The former Wildcat recently showed his stuff to the San Antonio Spurs.
According to Jon Rothstein, Kentucky and several other schools have been showing interest in 2013 point guard Shane Rector.
Rothstein posted on Twitter:
JonRothstein Absolutely love Oliver Antigua's jr PG to be Shane Rector. Stanford, Kentucky, Pitt, Rutgers, Arizona, + Villanova have all shown interest.
Rivals.com lists Rector as a 6-1 shooting guard and rates him as a three-star recruit.
If nothing else, he will be a name to keep an eye on for the future.
University of Kentucky basketball fans should be excited for the 2011-12 season.
Here is one of the reasons for excitement - check out the latest video of Kentucky signee Micheal Gilchrist:
Here is one of the reasons for excitement - check out the latest video of Kentucky signee Micheal Gilchrist:
The Utah Jazz visited Enes Kanter in Chicago this afternoon but both sides are remaining quiet following the meeting.
Here is an excerpt from The Hoops Report:
Enes Kanter met and worked out with the Utah Jazz today in Chicago at ATTACK Athletics.
The Jazz and the Kanter camp are keeping everything tight-lipped for some reason. This leaves a lot of speculation out there as to why they want to keep things so quiet.
"No complaints," said Max Ergul, Kanter's agent, who didn't comment much more than that.
The Jazz are also keeping quiet about the meeting and workout with Kanter today in Chicago.
Friday, June 3, 2011
The complete eight-team field has been announced for the 2011 Charleston Classic, which will be held November 17, 18 and 20 at Charleston, South Carolina.
Western Kentucky will be joined in the tournament by VCU, Georgia Tech, LSU, Northwestern, Seton Hall and Saint Joseph's.
Western Kentucky University athletics director Ross Bjork spoke to the Lexington Herald-Leader earlier this week about the decision to retain Ken McDonald as men's basketball coach, the state of the program and next season.
Bjork said the 2011-12 season will be a "reset".
Here is an excerpt:
So going against the impatient modern college sports zeitgeist, Western decided to give McDonald a second chance to get things right.
"We're calling it a reset," Bjork said.
McDonald agreed to take a pay cut of $100,000 a year to $250,000 as part of a new four-year deal. The coach also appeared with Bjork at a news conference announcing his retention and apologized for "personal and professional mistakes."
Last winter's rumor that the WKU coach had moved to Nashville drew a chuckle from Bjork. "He was dating a lady there," the Western AD said. "That explained that one."
What likely saved McDonald is an incoming recruiting class that is being hyped as one of the best in WKU history.
It includes two members of the Rivals 150, Derrick Gordon, a four-star shooting guard out of New Jersey, and forward George Fant, a hometown product from Warren Central.
"There's no question, (the incoming recruiting class) was a consideration," Bjork said. "None of them indicated to me that they wouldn't come to WKU if Ken McDonald wasn't our coach, but it was something that figured in our analysis, that we had a class we wanted to keep together."
Former University of Kentucky and NBA star Rex Chapman and the legendary Artis Gilmore headline the 2011 Kentucky Athletic Hall of Fame class, which will be inducted June 8.
Here are the seven newcomers:
- Rex Chapman, the former Owensboro Apollo and UK star;
- Artis Gilmore, who helped lead the Kentucky Colonels to the 1975 ABA championship;
- George Tinsley, who played in four Division II national championship games with Kentucky Wesleyan, winning three;
- Jerry May, the University of Louisville athletic trainer for three decades, who led the push for state certification for athletic trainers across the state;
- Phil Roof, the Paducah native who spent nearly 50 years in professional baseball as a player, coach and manager;
- Ed Kallay, the first television sportscaster in the state;
- Bunny Daugherty, who coached 13 state championship teams in four different sports at Sacred Heart Academy in Louisville.
Here is an excerpt from WKYT.com:
Chapman was known as “The Boy King” as he soared to the rim for two seasons with the Wildcats, but his coronation came well before that. Tickets to Apollo games were coveted items throughout his career with the Eagles. Fans packed high school gymnasiums, hoping the high-flying Chapman would do something, anything, phenomenal, and he rarely disappointed.
He appeared to be heading for Louisville until UK hired Eddie Sutton, who made signing Chapman priority one. And when King Rex cast his lot with the Wildcats, it touched off a fervor the Big Blue Nation had never encountered (but has several times since, in this day of over-hyped recruiting).
During Chapman’s sophomore season, the Wildcats appeared to be headed to the Final Four, winning both the Southeastern Conference regular season and tournament championships. But the Wildcats fell short, upset by Villanova in the NCAA regional tournament.
Artis Gilmore in action against Kareem Abdul Jabbar:
Former University of Kentucky player Brandon Stockton will hold his Shooting Stars Basketball Camp at Glasgow Middle School in July.
Here are some details:
Shooting Stars Basketball Camp will begin July 4th - July 7th from 9am-12pm. Camp will be held at Glasgow Middle School. Camp is for boys and girls Grades 3-8 and will cost $50 per camper.
Go Here for Contact Information
Northern Kentucky University has announced the signings of three prep standouts from Ohio.
Here is an excerpt of the NKU release:
•Paul Byrd, a 6-foot-1 point guard from Roger Bacon High School, Byrd averaged 11 points and 3.4 assists last season. He was also named the 2010-11 Greater Catholic League Central Player of the Year.
•Alex McGlothin, a 6-5 guard from Walnut Hills High School. McGlothin, who sat out most of his senior season with an injury, averaged 14 points and nine rebounds two years ago. As a junior, he also earned All-Fort Ancient Valley Conference honors.
•Anthony Monaco, a 6-4 shooting guard from Dover High School. Monaco averaged 22.5 points per game as a senior for Dover. He made 42 percent of his field-goal attempts and 83 percent of his free throws. Monaco also was named All-Eastern District and to the All-Ohio third team.
BARBOURVILLE, Ky. - Bulldog head coach Sean Gillispie and Lady Bulldog head coach Tim Curry are joining forces to host the 2011 Union College Bulldog Basketball Camp on June 27-29.
The camp is open to boys and girls ages 6 through seniors in high school. The camp will be held in Robsion Arena each day from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Cost is $60 per camper and includes a camp T-shirt.
This is a fundamental skills camp, which will focus on all the basic aspects of basketball. There will also be camp competitions and awards with players grouped by gender, age and ability level.
For more information, contact Curry at 606.546-1682 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
For a registration form, click here.
Kuran Iverson, the younger cousins of longtime NBA star Allen Iverson, has Kentucky on his college list.
Here is an excerpt from CBSSports.com:
Also in good shape is Iverson’s game. The rising junior is an absolute matchup nightmare due to his size and skillset. He can handle the ball well and is able to knock down perimeter jumpers. Moreover, he is versatile enough to play around the rim and make passes over the defense. Iverson still seems to be growing, which could hamper his ability to run the floor. With that said, his potential might be as high as anyone in the class of 2013.
The younger cousin of former NBA star Allen Iverson will have his pick when it comes to colleges.
For now, Pittsburgh, Connecticut, Kentucky, Syracuse, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Georgia Tech and North Carolina are in the mix.
Iverson is a 6-8 small forward from Northwest Catholic (Conn.) High School. He ranks No. 8 overall in the 2013 recruiting class.
UKCoachCalipari Here's my next giveaway if we reach 1.2 million followers. It's signed by all 12 SEC coaches
Thursday's Top 5:
- Brandon Knight was in Sacramento on Thursday to workout for the Kings.
- Another day, another writer took a cheap shot at UK head coach John Calipari.
- Former Western Kentucky star Orlando Mendez-Valdez has earned a spot on Mexico's national basketball team.
- It's official: the Southeastern Conference has scrapped its two-division format and will now be one, 12-team league.
- Two former Louisville players are working out for NBA teams: Edgar Sosa and Terrence Jennings.
- Berea Community's Nathan Vaughn has signed with Georgetown College. He chose the Tigers over Centre College, Union College and Lindsey Wilson College.
- There is yet another NCAA Division I transfer headed to the Mid-South Conference. More later...
- 2013 star Julius Randle says he is hearing from Kentucky.
- Despite reports earlier in the week, Shabazz Muhammad does not have a leader at this point.
- Speaking of Muhammad, Texas A&M extended an offer to the 2012 star on Thursday.
- Former EKU standout Arlando Johnson has returned to Apollo High School where he will take over the girls' program.
- The Dallas Mavericks made one of the best comebacks in NBA Finals history to defeat Miami 95-93; Dallas overcame a 15-point deficit in the fourth quarter.
- The Penn State coaching search is reportedly down to two: Boston University's Pat Chambers and Milwaukee's Rob Jeter.
- Former UK star Keith Bogans had surgery to relieve pain in his knee.
Video of the Day (Dallas defeats Miami):
Thursday, June 2, 2011
It didn't take former Murray State head coach Billy Kennedy long to make some noise on the recruiting trail.
Kennedy hired former UK assistant (to Billy Gillispie) Glynn Cyprien and Cyprien extended and offer to Kentucky recruit Shabazz Muhammad tonight.
Here is a post on Twitter from Christian T. Popoola:
PremierBall Texas A&M Aggies Coach Glynn Cyprien just officially offered #1 2012 Shabazz Muhammad. "I feel excited and good about the offer."- Shabazz
According to Barry Hayes of Hoop Stars Canada, Northern Kentucky University has picked up a commitment from 6-5 forward Ogi Stanivukovic from Hamilton, Ontario.
Here is Hayes' post on Twitter:
hoopstarscanada 6'5" forward Ogi Stanivukovic (Hamilton, ON/Sir Allan MacNab) has committed to Northern Kentucky University (NCAA Division 2) for this fall.
Stanivukovic in action:
The University of Alaska Anchorage has revised the men's bracket for the 2011 Carrs/Safeway Great Alaska Shootout.
Murray State will play Alaska Anchorage on November 23.
Here are more details:
Athletic director Steve Cobb says host Alaska Anchorage will play Murray State and Dartmouth will play San Francisco on Nov. 23. Other opening round games will feature Central Michigan vs. New Mexico State and UC Irvine vs. Southern Mississippi on Nov. 24.
The University of Pikeville will be hosting a Team Basketball Camp on Monday, June 20 – Thursday, June 23, 2011.
Games will be played at the Pikeville College Gym, Pikeville High School Gym, Pike Central High School Gym, Mullins Elementary, and the Blue Goose. Other sites will be added if needed.
Games will start around 10:00 am and run until 10:00 pm each day. Each team will be guaranteed 8 games each (two per day). Changes in schedules can be worked out if you let us know in advance. We can make anything work if you give us notice!
The cost will be $400 per Varsity Team. Junior Varsity teams will be $350 and a third team will cost $350.
2011 Team Camp Application
UPIKE will also be holding two individual youth camps:
Youth Camp Elite Application (rising 7-12 grades)
Youth Camp Application (ages 6-13)
Former two-sport Kentucky star Pat Riley knows how to build a basketball dynasty, according to Joe Kazmar of The Record Newspapers.
Riley, who currently serves as the president of the Miami Heat, came to Kentucky and played for legendary head coach Adolph Rupp. He was named SEC Player of the Year and AP All-American in 1966.
Here is an excerpt about Riley's time at UK:
When that career ended, after Linton won just about every accolade available in the state of New York at the time, nearly every major college in the nation was after him to sign a basketball scholarship, with Adolph Rupp coming out the winner and landing Riley at the University of Kentucky.
Rupp built a pretty good dynasty of his own at Lexington, coaching the Wildcats from 1931-1972 and landing third on the all-time list of winning college coaches with 876 career victories, behind only Bobby Knight and Dean Smith.
Riley was a two-sport athlete at Kentucky playing both basketball and football. But he starred as a basketball player and as a junior on the 1966 Wildcats team that finished No. 1 in the nation, Riley was named first-team All-SEC, All-NCAA Tournament Team, NCAA Regional Player of the Year, SEC Player of the Year and AP Third Team All-American.
Riley was selected by the San Diego Rockets in the first round of the 1967 NBA draft and was also drafted as a wide receiver by the Dallas Cowboys in the 11th round of the 1967 NFL draft.
He joined the Rockets and was later selected by the Portland Trail Blazers in the 1970 NBA expansion draft, but immediately traded to the Los Angeles Lakers, where he helped them win the 1972 NBA Championship. He retired after the 1975-76 season as a member of the Western Conference champion Phoenix Suns.
Dimemag.com lists Morehead State's Kenneth Faried as one of the top 5 post-lottery picks that will become NBA glue-guys.
Here is an excerpt about Faried:
Role: Rebounding machine
Team match: New York (17th overall)
Player comparison: Shawn Marion
Athletic and relentless, put the offensively-challenged Faried in an uptempo system and watch his career explode. The all-time NCAA rebounding leader will be a huge asset next to Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire, pulling down boards and igniting a fastbreak for Mike D’Antoni‘s offense that could be similar to the 2004-05 Phoenix Suns team of the current Knicks head coach. Worst-case scenario, he cleans up the offensive boards and throws down a few sick dunks.
AP National Writer Paul Newberry wrote a piece titled "How about a 'death penalty' for coaches?" a couple of days ago.
Of course, he had to find a way to slide in a shot at Kentucky head coach John Calipari, who happens to have zero violations on this coaching record.
Here is an excerpt:
The first major violation is enough to earn the head coach a one-year suspension, whether or not he was directly involved in the wrongdoing. Much like international doping standards hold athletes responsible for anything that goes into their bodies, a coach should be accountable for whatever is going on in his program.
A two-strike-and-you're-out-rule would prevent someone such as Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari from skipping around the country just ahead of those pesky investigators. He had already moved on to his next gig when first UMass, then Memphis, had to forfeit any mention of their Final Four appearances because they had used ineligible players.
Likewise, Tressel would have been out before this latest bit of ugliness even had a chance to arise from the muck that is modern-day college athletics.
Former Western Kentucky University star Orlando Mendez-Valdez has earned a spot on the Mexican national team.
Mendez-Valdez shared in an interview recently that his priorities have changed a bit since he married Aquila Orr, a WKU volleyball player.
Here is an excerpt from MySanAntonio.com:
Once determined to play in the NBA, Mendez-Valdez has a more pragmatic mindset when it comes to his career.
“Playing in the NBA is the dream of every kid,” Mendez-Valdez said. “But as you get older, you start realizing that there's a lot more to life than basketball.
“That's the direction my life has taken. Before, basketball was everything to me. I still have that competitiveness and drive to be the best, but I realize it's also important to be a good husband and a good father when we start having kids.”
Mendez-Valdez married Aquila Orr, a Western Kentucky volleyball player, on June 19, 2010.
Mendez-Valdez, 6-foot-1 and 185 pounds, said his goal is to continue playing basketball “as long as I can” before starting a career in coaching.
The Southeastern Conference has officially scrapped its two division format and will now return to one 12-team league.
The SEC's coaches recommended the move yesterday and the league's athletics directors approved the recommendation.
Here is an excerpt from SportingNews.com:
"It's done," Florida athletics director Jeremy Foley told ESPN. "The presidents don't have to sign off on this. This is an AD decision. We will be one (12-team) league effective next year.
"The perception of the league has been that if one division was playing well, the other was getting criticized. That can't be pointed out anymore. We're hoping this will have traction for us going forward."
Commissioner Mike Slive, a former chair of the NCAA tournament's men's basketball committee, also supported the move.
"I’m pleased that we’ve come to this conclusion,"
Slive told reporters. "I think it’s better for SEC basketball."
University of Kentucky head coach John Calipari, who chaired the coaches committee, said the league's goal is have eight teams in the discussion for the NCAA tournament.
Former University of Louisville point guard Edgar Sosa will work out for the New Orleans Hornets tomorrow.
Sosa played last season for Angelico Biella in Italy's top-level SerieA League. In 30 games, he averaged 14.1 points, 4.5 assists and 2.3 steals. He also shot 47-124 (37.9%) from three-point line.
Former Louisville big man Terrence Jennings has scheduled a series of NBA workouts according to his agent.
Here is a message from Adam Zagoria on Twitter:
AdamZagoria Terrence Jennings of Louisville will work out for the Celtics (June 6-7), Spurs (10) and Kings (14), per Eddie Lau.
In his recruiting diary at ESPN.com, 2013 star Julius Randle lists Kentucky as one of the schools he is hearing from the most.
Here is an excerpt:
I know everyone wants to know about recruiting, right?
That’s the most popular question that I get from people.
Well, at this point I’m wide open, but I’d definitely say that the schools I talk to the most are Duke, Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Kansas, North Carolina, Florida and Kentucky.
It’s funny because I had to talk to Jason (Jordan) from ESPN RISE about this blog, but I had to move that back because I was talking to (Duke) Coach K (Mike Krzyzewski).
Randle is a 6-8 power forward from Prestonwood Christian Academy in Plano, Texas. He ranks No. 2 overall on the Rivals.com list for 2013.
Randle in action:
June 6-9 (Mini Camp)
June 10-11 (Team Camp)
June 20-23 (Individual Camp)
July 25-28 (Individual Camp)
Parental Consent Form
Wednesday's Top 5:
- Pete Thamel's bro, Thayer Evans, wrote an entire article about football, Ohio State and Jim Tressel but still found a way to take a cheap shot at John Calipari.
- Morehead State's Kenneth Faried was named OVC Male Athlete of the Year.
- John Calipari will speak at a YMCA benefit in Richmond soon.
- Washington coach Lorenzo Romar gave some very respectable comments when asked to give his thoughts on Terrence Jones working out at UW recently.
- Louisville and Memphis will renew their series in the Basketball Hall of Fame Shootout next season.
On Thursday, Get Ready For:
- NBA Finals: Dallas vs. Miami at 9:00 p.m. ET on ABC
- Tyler Harting from Webster County has signed with Lindsey Wilson College.
- Most everyone I ask seems to think Kentucky will take Wake Forest transfer Tony Woods unless something changes.
- NBA legend Shaquille O'Neal announced his retirement via Twitter on Wednesday.
- The Southeastern Conference made it official last night. The league will do away with the current two division format and go back to being one 12-team conference.
Video of the Day (2013 recruit Aaron Harrison):
Wednesday, June 1, 2011
Mei-Ling Lam, Playboy's June 2011 Playmate of the Month, loves Rajon Rondo but she isn't giving the Celtics point guard her phone number.
Here is an excerpt of an interview Lam gave to Balltribe.com:
Who’s your favorite Celtic of all time?
My favorite Celtics player of all time… I don’t really have a favorite, I started following them more when I could understand the game more in depth. But right now my favorite Celtics player is Rondo.
I actually just met him a couple weeks ago when I was in Boston. I was out, I was being brought around to look at different venues and what not, and he was there, and he knew the guy that was showing us around. I guess he was friends with him.
Anyhow, he was super nice, he had asked me for my phone number the third time talking to him, and I politely said I don’t give my phone number out.
You said no to Rondo?!
I know! It’s so funny cause after, the next day, they had their game against Miami, but my friends came over and said, you completely gipped Rondo. It was kind of a joke.
That might be the way to go with those guys though right? People probably don’t say no to them very often.
Yeah. I dunno. The reality is what are they like in person, on a daily basis. But I dunno, it doesn’t matter who the guy is, I’m not the type to just give my number out the first time anyhow.
University of Kentucky head coach John Calipari says he doesn't consider himself an expert on who might be a one-and-done player.
Here is an excerpt of Cal's comments:
“If you asked me if Eric Bledsoe would go after a year, I would have laughed and everybody around him would have laughed,” Calipari said. “Or Daniel Orton, who did not play his senior year in high school.
“Or Brandon Knight if you saw him play in Hawaii. I was thinking he might be here four years.”
Former Morehead State star Demonte Harper has been working out for NBA teams prior to this month's draft.
Harper worked out for the Houston Rockets last Friday in a workout that included Tobias Harris (Tennessee), Malcolm Thomas (San Diego State), Tyler Honeycutt (UCLA), Jerai Grant (Clemson) and Chris Wright (Georgetown).
He worked out yesterday for the New York Knicks in a workout that included Malcolm Lee (UCLA), John Hollad (Boston University), Rick Jackson (Syracuse), Sam Muldrow (South Carolina) and Julyan Stone (UTEP).
Harper's career at MSU began as a walk-on and ended with him nailing a clutch game-winner in Morehead's stunning upset of Louisville in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
Demonte Harper in action:
CardChronicle.com is running an interesting online fan poll called the 2010-11 CC Least Cool Person Tournament.
Today's round is University of Kentucky head coach John Calipari vs. Digger Phelps.
Currently, Coach Cal is winning by a landslide.
Go Here to Vote
Southeastern Conference men's basketball coaches recommended today that the league do away with its current divisional structure and go back to one 12-team division.
Here is an excerpt from ESPN.com:
SEC men's basketball coaches recommended Wednesday that the league scrap its current two-division, six-team East-West split in favor of one 12-team division for the 2011-12 season.
Athletic directors will decide whether to pass or deny the resolution this week at the conference's annual spring meetings in Destin, Fla.
Kentucky coach John Calipari, who chaired Wednesday's meeting, told ESPN.com that the coaches were hoping the divisional re-alignment would help get "eight teams in the discussion for NCAA bids.''
Calipari said the coaches also recommended the four teams with the best overall conference records recieve byes in the SEC tournament. The current format rewards the two top teams in each division with a first-round bye in the SEC tournament, even if the second-place team in the SEC West has a worse record than the third-place team in the SEC East.
Bellarmine University still has space available in its summer basketball camps for boys and girls aged 6 to 13. Camps run from June 6 to July 15 and are co-directed by Bellarmine Head Men's Coach Scott Davenport and Head Women's Coach David Smith. Instruction is provided by Bellarmine coaches and members of the basketball teams.
In all, 10 different camps will be offered ranging from a "Junior Knight" camp for beginners to shooting campus for both boys and girls.
For more information, please click on the link below or call 502-272-8034.
Brochure and Enrollment Information
The University of Louisville and the University of Memphis will renew a long and storied rivalry next season in the Basketball Hall of Fame Shootout.
Here is the release from U of L:
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced today that it has formed a partnership with the University of Louisville to host the Basketball Hall of Fame Shootout at the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville on Saturday, Dec. 17 at 4 p.m. ET. U of L will renew a longtime rivalry with the University of Memphis with a portion of the proceeds to benefit the non-profit Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Mass.
The men's basketball game will be broadcast live on CBS Sports. This will be first of two games between the two schools with the return game being held in the 2012-13 season at Memphis.
"The Basketball Hall of Fame Shootout will be an incredible platform for our organization with two very high-profile basketball programs battling on national television," said John L. Doleva, President & CEO of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. "We would like to thank Louisville and Memphis, as well as their fans, for supporting the Basketball Hall of Fame."
Both basketball programs have been projected as early top 20 teams for the 2011-12 NCAA Men's Basketball season. Louisville returns 10 lettermen from its 25-10 BIG EAST Conference Championship runner-up team, led by point guard Peyton Siva and forward Kyle Kuric, with freshmen Wayne Blackshear and Chane Behanan expected to be key contributors. Memphis, which finished the 2010-11 campaign with a 25-10 record and the Conference USA Tournament title, returns the dynamic backcourt of Will Barton and Joe Jackson and nearly all of its roster while adding impressive newcomers Adonis Thomas and Stan Simpson.
Enes Kanter's agent told ZagsBlog.com that he expects Kentucky big man Enes Kanter to be a top three pick in the NBA Draft on June 23.
Here is an excerpt:
We expect him to go within the first two picks,” Mike Naiditch, who represents Kanter along with Max Ergul, said Wednesday by phone. “We expect him to go in the top 2, maybe 3, but we don’t think he’s going to go past that.”
Said ESPN analyst Fran Fraschilla: “He’s going by the fourth pick. I think he could go as high as 2. The reason he won’t go 1 is because Cleveland won’t want to make a mistake on a foreign guy.”
The agent describes Kanter as "the Turkish Dwight Howard":
“He’s more the Turkish Dwight Howard,” Naiditch said. “Kanter has the ability to face the basket and shoot it. The thing with Kanter that’s just amazing to me is that he has a knack for the ball. He’s so smart and he knows where the ball’s going to be. He’s going to rebound like Dennis Rodman. He doesn’t look like Dennis Rodman, a little different hairstyle, but the kid has a knack for getting rebounds. When it’s all said and done that’s what’s going to set him apart at first.
“And then as he matures, his offensive game will develop to the point where it could be as good as his rebounding game.”
University of Kentucky star Terrence Jones was recently spotted working out at the University of Washington, the school he originally committed to before changing his mind and heading to Lexington.
Washington head coach Lorenzo Romar was asked to give his thoughts on Jones playing pickup at UW:
Romar on Kentucky’s Terrence Jones playing pickup in Hec Ed: “I have no problem with it. I think any time you have good players coming to your gym, it’s a plus. A lot of people will want to say, well, he turned his back on you. No, he didn’t. He went where he thought was best, and I understand he made a decision publicly and all but, man, if I live my life based on people who did things differently than I thought, I’d be a pretty miserable guy. So, I kind of tend to move on.”
Thayer Evans of FoxSports.com managed to slide a cheap shot (surprise, surprise) at John Calipari into his latest piece about Jim Tressel.
In his article, Evans discusses the Tressel scandal with the Ohio State football program and then finds a way to slide this little tidbit in:
And when it comes to the definition of plausible deniability, it contains a photograph of Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari. Although he’s never been a national champion, he’s been one for years when it comes to deny, deny, deny.
Forget that Calipari’s had to vacate two of his three trips to the Final Four because of a player receiving improper benefits and for another reportedly not taking his own SAT. But somehow the detail-oriented coach didn’t know about either and was never suspended by the NCAA. Really?
But hold on; the apologists for Tressel, Calhoun, Newton and Calipari always blame the NCAA for their woes. They’re quick to say college sports’ governing body operates an unfair system.
It’s far from perfect, but the rules are the rules. Can’t adhere to them? Then take your plausible deniability elsewhere.
UK 2012 recruit Brandon Ashley with the FiveStarBasketball.com Play of the Day:
Ashley is a 6-8 power forward from Bishop O'Dowd (Cal.) High School. He ranks No. 14 overall in the 2012 class and has an offer from Kentucky.
Ashley is a 6-8 power forward from Bishop O'Dowd (Cal.) High School. He ranks No. 14 overall in the 2012 class and has an offer from Kentucky.
University of Kentucky head coach John Calipari will speak at a Telford YMCA fundraising dinner in Richmond on June 15.
Here is an excerpt about the appearance from RichmondRegister.com:
Tickets for the dinner, available at the YMCA, are $125 each and $1,000 for a table of eight, according to Debi White, the organization’s chief executive.
Tickets also may be obtained by calling the Y at 623-9356, White said. Credit-card payments may be accepted over the phone, White said.
The dinner will be served in the YMCA gymnasium and catered by O’Charley’s of Richmond.
Morehead State University's Kenneth Faried has been named Ohio Valley Conference Male Athlete of the Year in voting by the league's athletics directors and sports information directors.
Here is a release from MSU:
BRENTWOOD, Tenn. – Morehead State’s Kenneth Faried has been selected as the Ohio Valley Conference Male Athlete of the Year for 2010-11 in voting by the league's athletics directors and sports information directors.
Faried, who completed his degree and eligibility and is an NBA Draft first round candidate, was the OVC Player and Defensive Player of the Year and an All-American by seven different outlets. He was joined in the award by the OVC’s Female Athlete of the Year, Eastern Kentucky senior distance runner Kat Pagano. The two winners will receive their awards at the League's annual Honors Luncheon on June 3 in Nashville.
“I think Kenneth’s on-court accomplishments as one of the greatest players to ever play in the OVC speak for themselves, but this award only helps affirm what a great all-around person he is,” said Donnie Tyndall, Faried’s coach during his tenure at MSU. “Kenneth embodies what we try to teach all of the players that join our program: if you work hard, study hard and are a first-class person, you will succeed in basketball and in life. This is an award that is well deserved and all of Eagle basketball offers their congratulations to Kenneth.”
Faried in action last season at Eastern Kentucky University:
Josh Pastner's sister, Courtney Pastner, created a buzz after she sent a message on Twitter that was directed to star 2012 recruit Rodney Purvis.
On May 29, the account belonging to Courtney Pastner sent the following message:
cpastner "@rpurvis_44: Hurts to lose..." Rodney, I was at the game. You're the real deal. I can tell you're a workhorse. #keepyourheadup
The message was then "retweeted" by Purvis' account.
Here is an excerpt about the backlash from LarryBrownSports.com:
Courtney is the sister of Josh Pastner, who is the head coach at Memphis. She has a Memphis Tigers logo as her twitter background (as seen above). It’s pretty obvious she qualifies as a representative of the program the same way Nick Saban and Pat Dye’s daughters did.
Cameron Smith at Prep Rally points out that someone affiliated with the institution making direct public contact with the recruit through social media is a violation of NCAA rules. Sure it’s an extremely minor offense and a rule Courtney’s learning the hard way, but at least she now knows better. And I think we can probably file this story under “why does the NCAA consider this a violation,” again?
My Thoughts: This obviously is a very minor situation and, in my opinion, a fairly dumb rule. While nothing will likely come out of this particular incident, can you imagine if one of John Calipari's daughters or son did the same thing? It would be a national media meltdown and radio silence would be broken.
Former Campbellsville University point guard Michael Stringer is the new head coach at Coahoma Agricultural (MS) High School.
Here is an excerpt:
“Everything is an opportunity,” Stringer said. “I thank God and I’m blessed with the opportunity because they could have chosen someone else. God knows best. God knows what he’s doing. With the move from the Clarksdale School District to Aggie High School, that was the best move I could have made. Kids out here need help, too.”
Stringer succeeds Eric Keys as head coach of the Tigers. He was the assistant coach to Keys and CAHS head girls basketball coach Luster C. Tyler II in 2010-11.
Before coming to CAHS, Stringer was Tyler’s assistant coach with the Lady Wildcats and the head coach at Oakhurst Middle School for eight years. He is a Coahoma County High School graduate and was a point guard in college at Campbellsville in Kentucky.
Photo: TROY CATCHINGS/Clarksdale Press Register
* Photo: UKCoachCalipari With UK's Cary Shahid before our dinner at his great restaurant in Destin, Ocean Club.
Tuesday's Top 5:
- Derrick Jasper confirmed that he will join Billy Gillispie's Texas Tech program as a graduate assistant.
- Brandon Knight will workout for the Sacramento Kings on Thursday. Enes Kanter is scheduled to meet with four teams before the NBA Draft.
- John Calipari spoke at the SEC Spring Meetings in Destin yesterday.
- Terrence Jones has decided to skip an opportunity to play for the USA U19 team this summer and will focus on summer classes at UK.
- According to his Twitter account, Josh Harrellson is in Miami for a workout/tryout.
- Rowan County's Adam Wing has broken off his football commitment to Marshall and given a basketball commitment to Oklahoma State.
- Wing's Rowan County teammate, Corey Hunter, has signed with Alice Lloyd College.
- The Miami Heat pulled away late to defeat Dallas 92-84 in game 1 of the NBA Finals.
- Survey says...these former Kentucky stars won't be winning American Idol anytime soon.
- Head coach Tim Riley is stepping down at Warren Central High School to become an assistant for the Western Kentucky University women's basketball program.
- Former Campbellsville University point guard Michael Stringer is the new head coach at Coahoma Agricultural (MS) High School.
Video of the Day (NBA Draft profile of DeAndre Liggins):
Rowan County junior Adam Wing, who led the Vikings to a state runner-up finish last season, has committed to Oklahoma State and Travis Ford.
Here are some comments from Wing from NewOK.com:
“Growing up as a kid, basketball was always my first love,” Wing said via phone Tuesday night. “I started playing football in the sixth grade and people told me, ‘Oh, you can be a good football player.’ So I kind of got away from basketball a little bit.
“But I had a good state tournament and it kind of put me on the map.”
Wing originally committed to Marshall's football program. Now, he becomes the first member of OSU's 2012 recruiting class.
Here is Wing having a little fun in the backyard:
Former University of Kentucky point guard Derrick Jasper has confirmed to the Las Vegas Sun that he will join Billy Gillispie's program at Texas Tech University as a graduate assistant.
Jasper also says that some of the reports about his exit from Kentucky (he transferred to UNLV) and his relationship with Gillispie were "blown out of proportion a bit."
He does admit, however, that news of his new gig at Tech is "kind of shocking to some people."
Here is an excerpt:
When he decided to transfer, Jasper cited a want to play closer to home, though many speculated that the relationship between him and Gillispie had deteriorated after the guard came back from the injury too soon. Jasper chose UNLV and spent his redshirt season in 2008-09 rehabbing all over again, but he said that he doesn't hold any grudge against his former coach, whose lackluster two-year run at UK came to a close a year after his departure from Lexington.
"I think that was blown out of proportion a bit," Jasper said. "We had a good relationship. It wasn't bad. It was me wanting to get closer to him. I wouldn't be going back to work for him if I didn't believe he was a good guy.
"A lot of (the return from the knee injury) was just me trying to get back early enough to help my team. That's all in the past now. I'm just looking to the future."
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- Kevin Ware Commits to Louisville
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