Tag:Jeff Goodman
Posted on: January 5, 2012 5:13 pm
 

Arizona State suspends three players indefinitely

By Jeff Goodman

It keeps getting worse for Herb Sendek and Arizona State. 

The latest news is that the trio of Keala King, Kyle Cain and Chris Colvin have all been suspended and remained in Tempe while the Sun Devils play at USC on Thursday night and at UCLA this weekend. 

Sources told CBSSports.com that the trio has been suspended indefinitely and is expected not to play against UCLA as well. 

King was leading the team at 13.7 points per game, Cain, also a full-time starter, was averaging 8.5 points and 6.5 boards and Colvin was averaging 5.4 points and had started five games. 

Arizona State is 4-9 this season. 

Posted on: January 5, 2012 4:43 pm
Edited on: January 5, 2012 5:26 pm
 

Ole Miss boots leading scorer, reserve

By Jeff Goodman

Ole Miss leading scorer Dundrecous Nelson has been kicked off the team for violating team rules, just days after being arrested and charged with with possession of drug paraphernalia in his home. 

The 5-foot-11 sophomore guard was averaging 11.6 points per game, but had struggled and scored a total of 14 points over the past three games. He had been replaced in the starting lineup by freshman Jarvis Summers. 

Nelson was arrested on Tuesday night, shortly after the team's 50-48 victory against SMU. The police report stated that officers smelled marijuana from the home and found eight roaches. 

Seldom-used reserve Jamal Jones was also kicked off the team for admitting to smoking marijuana with Nelson. 

Andy Kennedy's Rebels are 10-4 and open SEC play at LSU on Saturday. 

Posted on: January 5, 2012 12:12 pm
Edited on: January 5, 2012 12:18 pm
 

Cooley brings passion, defense to Providence

Cooley's first year at Providence has gone relatively well. (Getty Images)

By Jeff Goodman

Ed Cooley's Providence team had no business going toe-to-toe with top-ranked Syracuse last night. 

But that's exactly what happened for the first 35 or so minutes - when Providence somehow was in a two-possession game after Gerard Coleman's bucket with a little more than five minutes left. 

The first thing you notice with this Friars team is that they are attempting to guard. Keno Davis is a terrific guy, but his teams couldn't -- no, make that didn't - check anyone. 

Cooley has a rebuilding job in Providence, but he's exactly what this program needs - a high, energy native who will get his players to go hard and also become a face in the community. 

He inherited a team with a couple of Big East guards in Vincent Council and Gerard Coleman, but not much else. There was virtually nothing up front. 

Cooley managed to land two elite recruits in point guard Kris Dunn and local talent Ricky Ledo, so the perimeter could be loaded next season -- if Ledo qualifies and is cleared by the NCAA (he's attended multiple schools). 

Cooley's passion, though, is unquestionable and contagious. Because he was an assistant under Al Skinner at Boston College, there was a perception -- one that was completely off-base -- that he would being a similar approach to PC. 

While Cooley did learn from Skinner, he couldn't be any different from his former boss. He's high-energy, enjoys interacting with the fans and loves to get out on the recruiting trail. 

Syracuse shot 61 percent from the field and 58 percent from beyond the arc in Wednesday night's 87-73 victory that wasn't nearly as lopsided as the score indicates. 

Cooley only played six players: Council, Coleman, tiny guard Bryce Cotton, freshmen bigs LaDontae Henton and Brice Kofane and sophomore Kadeem Batts. 

Henton went for 11 points and 13 boards and while Batts (14 points) played well, Cooley is one big man away from potentially becoming a factor in the Big East. 

But much of that could rest on the shoulders of Ledo. 

Ledo's talent level is unquestionable. He's a big-time scorer, but he has maturity issues. Cooley maintains Ledo has made significant progress in that area -- and if that's accurate (nothing would make me happier), the Friars could soon have the talent to match Cooley's passion. 

That could be a scary combo. 


Posted on: January 5, 2012 9:30 am
Edited on: January 5, 2012 11:34 am
 

CBSSports.com Midseason Awards and Predictions



If there’s one thing we’ve learned after years of writing about college basketball on the Internet, it’s that people love two things more than seemingly anything else: predictions and awards. Therefore, we’ve combined the two for our midseason awards.

We take a look back at the first two months of what has been a great campaign so far, but we also look ahead to the next two months – and the NCAA tournament. How likely are we to be right? Well, take a look at our Preseason Predictions to get a feel for our collective level of genius (Goodman brings it down, obviously). Let’s get to it.

National Champion

Jeff Goodman: Kentucky. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist gives these guys the toughness, Anthony Davis brings the length, Doron Lamb the perimeter shooting and Marquis Teague will hit his stride come SEC play. I don't care if Terrence Jones is an enigma, as long as he shows up for a couple games in March and April, it'll be enough. 

Gary Parrish: Kentucky. I love talent and nobody has more than Kentucky. They overwhelm you offensively and guard you tremendously. They have shooters and shotblockers and lots and lots of pros. Yes, John Calipari is about to get his first national championship.

Jeff Borzello: North Carolina. Had Anthony Davis not blocked John Henson’s mid-range jumper in the final seconds, would everyone still be picking Kentucky? The Tar Heels have the best frontcourt in the country, and Kendall Marshall is a calming influence come March.

Matt Norlander: Kentucky. It's who I had at the start of the year. My other three colleagues went with North Carolina. I know Goodman's already turned heel and come over to my side.

Final Four

Goodman: Kentucky, North Carolina, Connecticut, Florida

Parrish: Kentucky, North Carolina, Ohio State, Connecticut

Borzello: North Carolina, Kentucky, Ohio State, Florida

Norlander: I hate doing this BECAUSE WE HAVE NO BRACKET. So do I pick the four best teams? Because how often does that happen? So ... no? I pick a random team that I'm guessing won't get placed in the same quad as Kentucky? What the hell: Kentucky, Syracuse, UNLV, Wagner. Because I can. And because that Danny Hurley sure does deserve a feature treatment or two.

Cinderella

Goodman: Weber State. These guys have one of the nation's top guards in Damian Lillard -- and have another guy that can light it up from the perimeter in Scott Bamforth. The Wildcats need -- and will get -- forwards Kyle Bullinger and Frank Otis back healthy soon. 

Parrish: Saint Louis. Rick Majerus has a team that guards tough and shoots really well. Nobody will want to play them early in the tournament, I assure you.

Borzello: Creighton. The Bluejays have high-major size with Doug McDermott and Greg Echenique, and a very capable point guard in Antoine Young. They also are one of the best 3-point shooting teams in the country.

Norlander: Iona. The Wall Street Journal's Ben Cohen tweeted at me Wednesday, "Can't wait to pick Iona over Vandy come March." That's so true! 

Undervalued

Goodman: Xavier. Everyone has forgotten about the Musketeers and what they did prior to The Brawl. These guys were 9-0 and will get their swagger back in A-10 play. 

Parrish: Xavier. The Musketeers are unranked and struggling post-brawl. But give it time. This team is still talented. They'll be there in the end.

Borzello: BYU. The 16-point loss to Saint Mary’s to open WCC play certainly didn’t help, but the Cougars have plenty of weapons and can also defend. Matt Carlino has been a key since becoming eligible.

Norlander: Mississippi State. The Bulldogs can make the Final Four but everyone's just waiting for the Renardo Sidney haymaker to come. It won't. MSU is forever enigmatic but really quite loaded. 

Overrated

Goodman: Indiana. I know the Hoosiers deserve their lofty ranking, but these guys are still more of a fringe Top 25 team than one that belongs in the Top 12. 

Parrish: Syracuse. Yes, the Orange are good. We even have them ranked No. 1. But are they really the nation's best team? I don't think so. So they are, by definition, overrated.

Borzello: Wisconsin. If you trust KenPom.com (and I usually do), one might think the Badgers are the second-best team in the country. They’re not even close. Jordan Taylor has struggled without defenses focusing on Jon Leuer.

Norlander: Florida. The Gators have some nice pieces. I love Voltron in the middle. But they aren't heat-seeking the Final Four, like many are still holding on to. Not a top-10 team. Come at me, UF fans. Wait, first -- look, Kenny Boynton just took an ill-advised 3 walking across the quad!

Player of the Year (so far)

Goodman: KU's Thomas Robinson. The guy brings it each and every night. He's averaging 17.7 points and 12.2 boards per game and already has nine double-doubles. 

Parrish: KU's Thomas Robinson. The 6-foot-9 forward is averaging 17.7 points and 12.2 rebounds per game. He's a dominant player on a nationally relevant team.

Borzello: KU's Thomas Robinson. If Jared Sullinger played every game and Marcus Denmon wasn’t on such a balanced team, I might think differently. Robinson is a dominant force down low, and he doesn’t have much help inside.

Norlander: Creighton's Doug McDermott. His numbers continue to hover well above what Jimmer did last year -- and remember, Jimmer won most of the POY awards.

All-American Team (so far)

Goodman: Thomas Robinson (Kansas), Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (Kentucky), Jared Sullinger (Ohio State), Harrison Barnes (North Carolina), Jeremy Lamb (UConn)

Parrish: I like my All-American teams to be like actual teams with a point guard, two wings and two bigs. So ... Kendall Marshall (North Carolina), Marcus Denmon (Missouri), Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (Kentucky), Thomas Robinson (Kansas), Jared Sullinger (Ohio State)

Borzello: Marcus Denmon (Missouri), Harrison Barnes (North Carolina), Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (Knetucky), Thomas Robinson (Kansas), Jared Sullinger (Ohio State).

Norlander: Doug McDermott (Creighton), Jared Sullinger (Ohio State), Thomas Robinson (Kansas), Marcus Denmon (Missouri), Draymond Green (Michigan State).

Freshman of the Year (so far)

Goodman: UK's Anthony Davis. I'm not going to duplicate and go with Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, even though he's Kentucky's MVP. Davis is the game-changer on the defensive end with his length and shot-blocking ability. 

Parrish: UK's Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. He's the leader of the team I believe will win the national title. He had 24 and 19 in that win over Louisville.

Borzello: UK's Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Kentucky. Been doing Freshman of the Year rankings every week, and Kidd-Gilchrist finally overtook Anthony Davis after the Louisville game. He’s Kentucky’s most important player.

Norlander: I'm offering up IU's Cody Zeller. There's no way Indiana's this good if he's not there. He's one of the most reliable scorers in hoops, and again, only a freshman. A better defense player than people realize, too.

Coach of the Year (so far)

Goodman: Tom Crean. The Hoosiers coach deserves the honor. He's got two huge resume wins - against Kentucky and Ohio State in Bloomington.

Parrish: Steve Prohm. The first-year Murray State coach has the Racers undefeated with a win at Memphis. Put another way, he's still never lost a game as a head coach.

Borzello: Tom Crean. No one thought the Hoosiers were going to make the NCAA tournament, yet they have the most impressive pair of wins in the country, over Kentucky and Ohio State. He’s certainly not on the hot seat anymore.

Norlander: Frank Haith. I gave Indiana love in the category above, so I'll take a turn and make my case for the Missouri coach. He's down to seven scholarship players, the expectations were ankle-level for him ... and the team is undefeated. Can make a Final Four. Dude has to be walking into his home win the confidence of Jay-Z every night because of how he's proved everyone wrong so far.

Biggest Surprise (so far)

Goodman: San Diego State. Steve Fisher lost four starters - including first-rounder Kawhi Leonard. Somewhow, the Aztecs are in the Top 25. I think I need to get back to San Diego -- and soon. 

Parrish: Georgetown. The Hoyas were picked 10th in the Big East. Now they're ranked ninth in the country with wins over Louisville, Memphis (twice) and Alabama.

Borzello: Missouri. Everyone knew the Tigers had talent, but preseason injuries and a new head coach left them as a question mark. Now, they are 14-0 and one of the most dangerous teams in the country.

Norlander: Indiana. If you're telling me you saw this start coming, then I reserve the right to assume your place resembles Kevin Spacey's in "Se7en."

Biggest Disappointment (so far)

Goodman: I was going to go with Gary Parrish, but then I was told we could only go with college basketball teams or players. That makes it awfully difficult, but I'm going with the entire Pac-12. I attended a school in this league - and the entire conference stinks right now. 

Parrish: Pittsburgh. The Panthers were ranked 10th in the preseason. Now they're unranked with losses to four unranked teams -- Long Beach State, Wagner, Notre Dame and Cincinnati.

Borzello: Pittsburgh. The Panthers came into the season as a top-10 team, but have done nothing of note and have lost four games already – to four teams that might not make the NCAA tournament. Jamie Dixon needs to figure something out, and fast.

Norlander: Xavier. Just with everything. Being in the Crosstown Punchout and the fallout since then. X has a Final Four ceiling. Or had. Can they recover and play themselves back into a 5 seed or better?

Photos: US Presswire

Posted on: January 4, 2012 3:16 pm
 

Travis Ford with a 2nd historic recruiting class

By Jeff Goodman

I wasn't certain that Travis Ford could match the recruiting class he assembled while at UMass back in 2007. Ford received nine commitments in that group - four transferred, two never arrived, two were seldom-used role guys and one wound up being a solid contributor. 

Now Ford has gone 0-for-7 with his 2009 class at Oklahoma State. 

That's two complete classes and virtually nothing to show for it. No wonder why Derek Kellogg is still trying to get things going at UMass and why Ford's team is struggling and just 7-6 this season. 

With point guards Reger Dowell and Fred Gulley both deciding to transfer, there isn't a single member of Ford's recruiting haul that resides in Stillwater. Six of the seven have left via transfer - and the prize of the class never made it academically. 

Here's the complete rundown: 

Reger Dowell: Started three of the first 11 games and averaged 5.5 points in 19.2 minutes per game. Recently opted to transfer. 

Fred Gulley: The Arkansas native started 14 games as a freshman and suffered a shoulder injury last season. He had started five games this season and was averaging 4.0 points in 18.4 minutes when he decided to leave. 

Ray Penn: Yet another point guard who didn't make it. Penn started 15 games his freshman season, but was kicked off the team last year after starting 10 games and averaging 5.9 points. He reportedly transferred to Texas Southern, but isn't on the roster. 

Roger Franklin: Was a heralded recruit who barely played (averaged 1.7 points last season) and transferred to North Texas. He received a waiver to play immediately due to an illness in the family. He's averaging 7.3 points and 4.5 boards for the Mean Green so far this season. 

Jarred Shaw: The 6-foot-11 Texan played sparingly in 26 games over  two seasons before transferring to Utah State. He's sitting out this year. 

Torin Walker: The 6-foot-11 Georgia native played 10 games as a freshman before transferring to Middle Tennessee. He sat out last season and is averaging 0.6 points and 0.3 rebounds this season. 

Karron Johnson: Talented, but enigmatic. He's bounced around plenty and never qualified. He went to junior college for two years and is now at D-3 Shaw University, where he has yet to play this season. 

Now let's take a refresher course with that UMASS GROUP FROM 2007: 

Travon Wilcher: He transferred to Maine, averaged 1.0 point per game last season in six games and hasn't played a single minute this year. 

Papa Lo: After averaging 0.3 points as a freshman at UMass, he transferred to Bryant and averaged 0.4 points and 0.8 rebounds last season. 

Max Groebe: He transferred to Cornell after logging a total of 104 minutes as a freshman under Ford and is averaging 1.5 points in 5.5 minutes this season for the Big Red.

Matt Glass: He transferred to Vermont after averaging 3.4 points in 13.1 minutes per game at UMass as a sophomore. He's the star of this class, averaging 9.3 points per game this season. 

Marcus Matthews: He never arrived and is now at Division II Southern New Hampshire, where he is averaging 1.8 points per game in six contests this season. 

Trey Lang: He finished his UMass career under Derek Kellogg last season as a walk-on and averaged 1.0 point per game. 

Matt Hill: He averaged 9.5 minutes per game last season and has appeared in just two games this year, scoring a total of six points. 

Tyrell Lynch: Ford compared him to his former Kentucky teammate, Jamal Mashburn. Lynch ended up transferring after a freshman season that saw him average 3.7 points and 3.6 rebounds. His whereabouts now are unknown. 

Gary Correia: He played 27 games last season as a senior and averaged 4.3 points per game as the starting point guard. 

Posted on: January 4, 2012 9:30 am
Edited on: January 4, 2012 9:35 am
 

Izzo's team displays more mental toughness in win

By Jeff Goodman

It's difficult for Tom Izzo to hide his emotions and thoughts, which is why it was easy to digest that Michigan State's coach wasn't having much fun with his group last season. 

"I slept with both eyes open," Izzo joked following the Spartans win at Wisconsin last night. "Now I only sleep with one open." 

Izzo likes this team. Really likes these guys. 

On paper, it's not an intimidating bunch. If it was, let's face it: One-year Valpo transfer Brandon Wood -- no matter what he did in the Horizon - wouldn't be able to come to East Lansing and immediately move into the starting lineup. 

But these guys -- led by Draymond Green and Keith Appling - have displayed the one trait that's become an Izzo-ism: Toughness. 

Proof?

They have gone into The Kennel in Spokane and The Kohl Center and come away with victories. Sure, the 14-game winning streak that followed a pair of historic losses to start the season is impressive. 

But wins at Gonzaga and on the road against Wisconsin?  The 'Zags are 96-8 at The Kennel and Wisconsin had only lost eight Big Ten home games in the last 11 years.

That's mental toughness. 

"Damn right," Izzo said. 

"This was a big win for us," Izzo added after the controversial ending in which Ryan Evans' apparent 3-pointer at the buzzer that would have sent the game into a second overtime was disallowed after the refs determined time had expired. "We weren't great, but we're getting better every game in some aspect." 

Unbelievably, this was Izzo's first career victory against Bo Ryan in Madison. He was 0-for-8 prior to the win. 

"They've had our number," Izzo said. "We lost one in overtime, we were up 12 in another. Our football team lost and we even tried to use that this time. It was our turn. It wasn't pretty, but it was a big one for us." 

Michigan State has Iowa and Northwestern next and that means, barring an upset, the Spartans should have 16 wins by mid-January - which is yet another indication to never, ever discount an Izzo-coached team from the equation. 

"We've won 14 straight and I'm telling you, I don't even feel like we've been great," Izzo said. "I really think this team has a big upside." 

Izzo told me not to give up on this team after the loss to Duke way back on Nov. 15. 

Fifty days have passed -- and Michigan State hasn't lost since. 

Posted on: January 3, 2012 2:21 pm
 

Calhoun's vacation, um suspension, ends tonight

By Jeff Goodman

At times throughout UConn's last two games, Jim Calhoun has found himself yelling at the television -- at his players and also at his associate head coach George Blaney. 

"Then I realize it's not talking back and no one says a word," Calhoun said. "So I stop." 

Calhoun will serve the third and final game of his NCAA-mandated suspension tonight when the Huskies play at Seton Hall. He'll watch, as he has for the first two games, at home either by himself or with his wife. 

"It's frustrating," Calhoun admitted. "And it's different than when I've had to watch before when I had cancer. But it is what it is." 

"It's allowed me to get a different look at the team, though," he added.

Calhoun said he's been able to utilize his time away from the team -- The NCAA also didn't allow him to attend practice or any team-related activities -- to spend more time with his grandchildren and also catch-up with former players. 

"It's been nice in a way, but I don't recommend it -- at least not for me personally," he said. 

UConn won't practice tomorrow and Calhoun said he'll join the team at night in New Jersey, where he'll meet with the coaching staff and then go to dinner. His first game back comes Saturday night at Rutgers. 

Calhoun said he has jotted down plenty of notes watching the wins at South Florida and at home against St. John's. He wants to cut down on the turnovers, get veteran big man Alex Oriakhi back to how he was playing last season and also have Shabazz Napier defending with more consistency. Nothing, right now, rates higher than shoring up the defense. A year ago, UConn was 18-0 when it made three consecutive stops at least five times in a game. This year the Huskies have only done it twice -- and one came in the win over the Red Storm in the last game. 

"With as good of a shooting team we are this year, we could be really tough if we can get consistent stops," Calhoun said. 

The Huskies are shooting 50 percent from the field over the first 13 games of the season and 43 percent from beyond the arc. Shabazz Napier and Jeremy Lamb are both at 42 percent and freshman Ryan Boatright has made 7-of-12 from deep since joining the team. 

Calhoun also said roles have been established. It's Napier and Lamb in the backcourt with Boatright coming off the bench. There's Andre Drummond, Tyler Olander and Oriakhi splitting minutes at the four and five spots. However, the one position that needs to become solidified soon is at the small forward spot where sophomore Roscoe Smith, freshman DeAndre Daniels and Niels Giffey have all taken turns and had their moments. 

"We need to figure that out," Calhoun said. 

Calhoun was also clear that Syracuse is a step ahead of everyone else in the Big East right now, and part of the reason is that Jim Boeheim has a veteran team while UConn often throws out a lineup that features all freshmen and sophomores. 

"We still haven't played anywhere close to where I think we can," Calhoun said. "We're still far away -- and we're 12-1." 

And Calhoun is almost done serving his time. 

Posted on: January 2, 2012 4:57 pm
Edited on: January 2, 2012 5:14 pm
 

Joe Jackson refuses to give into pressure of city

                                                                  (Getty Images)

By Jeff Goodman

I feel for Joe Jackson. 

The Memphis native doesn't want to leave his city, the one that bestowed the savior label upon him when he decided to remain home and play for the beloved Tigers on Sept. 11, 2009. But the pressure has clearly gotten to him. 

I don't know Jackson especially well, but you connect with certain kids. There have been plenty through the years for me -- and Jackson is one of them. I'm guessing I'm not the only media member who feels this way, either. 

Jackson's honesty is truly refreshing. 

"It is frustrating," he told CBSSports.com on Monday afternoon just prior to his first practice since deciding to remain with the Memphis program. "I feel like I've only played up to my potential only a couple times since I've been in college -- and I'm so used to doing it on a consistent basis." 

Jackson was right there with Kyrie Irving, Josh Selby and Brandon Knight as one of the elite point guards in the Class of 2010. He'd admitted that he thought he'd be one-and-done and off to the NBA, but now he understands that's not a reality. 

"It's hard," Jackson said. "Everybody has an opinion around here and you can't listen to everyone. It's tough when you're at home." 

Jackson met with Memphis coach Josh Pastner on Friday and was told to take a couple of days to contemplate whether he wanted to remain with the program and on the team. 

"I love this city," he said. "This was always a dream of mine to play for Memphis, be a Penny Hardaway type of guy. I want to be that person." 

Player and coach met again on Sunday and Jackson informed Pastner that he wasn't going anywhere - no matter how difficult it's been for him over his first year and a half. 

"He's got both feet in," said Pastner, who brought Jackson off the bench for the first time this season against Robert Morris. "I love Joe. He's still learning and has his best basketball ahead of him." 

But Jackson is frustrated, because the team is struggling and he isn't playing up to expectations, either. However, his numbers -- whether it be scoring, shooting, turnovers -- have improved from his freshman season. 

"I look at myself in the mirror and I know I've got a lot of talent," Jackson said. "I can't let it go to waste. I can't." 

Jackson knows it would be easier to go somewhere else, finish out his career someplace where he could be anonymous and wouldn't have to field advice from the janitor to the cashier at the convenience store. But he doesn't want to leave this city. This is his city. 

"I have the fear of not making it," Jackson said. "That's what puts stress on me. Maybe if I was somewhere else, I wouldn't feel like I had the pressure of the entire city on me." 

"It's hard because when you've got it going, it's the best," he added. "No one can take you down. It's like you're on a cloud. But when you're losing and not playing well, it's hard. It feels like I am letting everyone down."

Jackson reminds me he's just 19 years old, that he still has plenty of time left to get himself - and his team - on the right track. 

"My frustration isn't about me coming off the bench or my personal game," Jackson said. "I feel like I haven't done anything to help the team get to the next level." 

"I'm still a good player," he added. "And I'm going to get a lot better. Sometimes it's just not your time." 

But Jackson isn't giving up on the fact that his time won't come -- in Memphis. 


Category: NCAAB
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com