Posted on: December 24, 2011 7:25 pm
Edited on: December 24, 2011 7:46 pm
By Gary Parrish
Mac Irvin, the namesake of the Chicago-based and Nike-sponsored Mac Irvin Fire summer basketball program, has died, multiple sources confirmed to CBSSports.com on Saturday. The exact cause of death was not immediately known, but Irvin had been fighting diabetes.
Duke assistant Jeff Capel was among the first to Tweet about Irvin's death.
"RIP to Mr. Mac Irvin," Capel Tweeted. "A mentor to so many. You will be missed!"
Countless elite prospects have spent summers playing for the Mac Irvin Fire. The most recent 17-and-under team featured Jabari Parker, a 6-foot-8 forward who is regarded as the nation's No. 1 prospect in the Class of 2013. Parker is being recruited by Duke, Kentucky, Michigan State, Kansas, Illinois and a host of other top-tier programs.
"My condolence goes out to the Irvin family," Tweeted NBA veteran Damon Jones. "MAC was a super dude and did a lot for our youth with his aau program."
Posted on: September 7, 2011 5:17 pm
Edited on: September 7, 2011 5:24 pm
In our Trippin’ series, we’re talking to teams as they return from preseason trips to foreign locales. Click here for all Trippin’ related stories.
By Jeff Goodman
Jeff Capel got his first up-close look at his alma mater in Duke's recent trip to China and Dubai, so I figured the former Oklahoma head coach would be the ideal choice for insight on the Blue Devils.
OK, fine. I'll admit it. Coach K big-timed me, but Capel was perfect for the task and shared some of his thoughts - including gushing about the trio of Ryan Kelly, Miles Plumlee and Seth Curry.
What he learned from the trip: "How good Ryan Kelly is. He was our best player on the trip - and was pretty consistent in practice, too. His body has changed, he's more mature and his confidence continues to increase. This trip should provide him with even more confidence heading into the season. The second thing that stood out to me was how Seth Curry has expanded his game. I also thought of him as a shooter, but he's really worked on his ballhandling and decision-making and has put himself in a position when we put the ball in his hands and are comfortable with him running the team. He's better than I thought."
Who/What stood out on the trip: "How big and long we are. We have three guys in the frontcourt who are at least 6-foot-10 - Ryan, Miles and Mason. The strength of our team was in our frontcourt. The three main guys who stood out on the trip were Ryan, Seth and Miles (Plumlee)."
What concerns you following the trip: "The two areas we didn't play as well as we'd have liked were defense and rebounding. We need to rebound the ball at a higher rate, especially with the size we have. But we didn't implement a lot of our defensive stuff in the 10 practices prior to the trip."
- Nolan Smith told me a few months ago he expected sophomore Tyler Thornton to win the job as the starting point guard, but it was Seth Curry who started each game at the point. "I think he'll see time at both backcourt spots," Capel said.
- Freshman point guard Quinn Cook did not play on the trip as he continues to rehab from an injury he suffered last season at Oak Hill Academy. "He participated in the first three or four practices, but it was obvious he wasn't ready," Capel said. The Duke staff expects Cook to be ready for the start of practice on Oct. 15.
- Highly touted freshman Austin Rivers is really the one guy on the team that can break down an opposing defense. "The best thing he does is penetrate and create offense," Capel said. "He didn't shoot the ball particularly well, but that's not something we're worried about." Capel said that the area where Rivers needs to improve is on the defensive end, but he knows Rivers is capable since he did it when Capel was coaching the U-18 team last summer. "He can be a heck of a defensive player, but has never really been asked to do it."
- Rivers' father, Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers, went with his family on the entire trip. Nolan Smith also spent the entire time with the team while Kyrie Irving and Grant Hill were with the team in Shanghai.
- Capel said the highlight of the trip was climbing the Great Wall with the entire team. "It was pretty cool how the guys came together," Capel said. "You don't realize how high it is. I was exhausted. Everyone was."
- On freshman Marshall Plumlee, the youngest of the Plumlee Brothers: "He probably got knocked back more than anyone. He's going to be a really good player for us, but he's playing behind the strength of our team - Mason, Miles and Ryan. His time will come." Capel said that the youngest Plumlee can really run and plays hard, but just needs experience and strength.
- On freshman Alex Murphy: "He played better each game. If he makes his free throws and a couple of 3's, then you're talking about him playing great. The big thing for Alex is he has to develop the ego that he's a really good player. He's a legit 6-8, is athletic, can run and is versatile. He can't worry about stepping on anyone's toes. I think he came in thinking he might redshirt, but now he sees that he can play this year."
- On freshman Michael Gbinijie: "He struggled a little bit, but had been good in practice. He has to understand who he is - a defender, rebounder and a kid who can bring us toughness. Like so many freshman, he feels as though his worth is determined by scoring - while what he needs to provide us is as a big, athletic wing."
- Andrew Dawkins did what he does - make shots. Capel said the staff talked about it was the best defense they had ever seen him play.
- Mason Plumlee came off the bench each game as his brother, Miles and Kelly started up front. "Those other two guys played better in practice," Capel said. "Mason played well, and I think that may have lit a fire in him. Now he knows, with those two guys improving so much, that he has to step up. We need him to be a great rebounder and defend our paint. He played well, but those other two guys just played better. Miles was tremendous on the trip - he looked like a pro. He was dunking on guys, blocking shots and finishing through traffic. He was a beast."
Posted on: July 25, 2011 12:51 pm
Edited on: July 25, 2011 12:58 pm
By Jeff Goodman
Posted on: May 10, 2011 2:55 pm
Edited on: May 10, 2011 6:37 pm
Posted by Eric Angevine
Posted on: March 15, 2011 10:37 am
Posted on: March 14, 2011 1:09 pm
Edited on: March 14, 2011 6:58 pm
Posted by Jeff Borzello
The coaching dominoes continue to fall.
As first reported by Seth Davis on Twitter, Jeff Capel has been fired by Oklahoma.
As recently as last week, Capel was confident that he would return to the Sooners next season. “I plan on being back. I don’t get into the speculation stuff,” Capel told the Dallas Morning News.
Oklahoma has struggled the past two seasons, going just 27-36 since Blake Griffin led the Sooners to the Elite Eight in 2009. In Capel’s five seasons in Norman, he has reached the NCAA tournament twice
Marquette head coach Buzz Williams, who has also been mentioned with job openings at Arkansas and Texas Tech, will certainly be on the short list of candidates for Oklahoma.