Tag:Gary Parrish
Posted on: October 7, 2011 1:31 am
Edited on: October 7, 2011 10:19 am

Memphians targeting D-Rose is dumb, shortsighted

By Gary Parrish

Three Memphis-area attorneys who double as University of Memphis boosters got so angry about John Calipari leaving their basketball program on probation that they last year threatened to sue Calipari, one-and-done star Derrick Rose and athletic director R.C. Johnson on behalf of unnamed season-ticket holders, according to reports late Thursday from The Commercial Appeal's Kyle Veazey and Geoff Calkins.

Nevermind that, according to university counsel Sheri Lipman, the complaint “had all sorts of holes in it." And nevermind that, according to common sense, any lawsuit would've almost certainly been dismissed. Calipari, Rose and Johnson still each opted to settle out of court. Calipari and Rose agreed to pay the attorneys a total of $100,000, and Calipari also agreed to donate the bonus he received for taking Memphis to the title game of the 2008 NCAA Tournament back to the school's Tiger Scholarship Fund. Johnson agreed to return the bonus he received that year, too.

Calipari's donation is estimated at $232,000 while Johnson is expected to repay a little more than $71,000.

So it's a victory for Memphis fans, I guess.

Season tips Nov. 7
They hit Calipari in the pocketbook.

That must've been fun.

But why did these attorneys think it was wise to threaten to sue the school's most famous alum?

Because that's not wise.

That's just stupid.

Say what you want about Rose, but he's merely a pawn in this game, a product of the system, a kid most believe only played at Memphis because somebody else took his SAT, a kid I believe should've never been essentially forced to play college basketball in the first place. Let's be honest: Rose didn't belong at a university any more than I belong in the NBA, and I mean that in the most respectful of ways. He's a basketball player, plain and simple, and it was pretty clear for years before Rose ever enrolled at Memphis that he'd eventually make millions of dollars slashing to the rim.

And it was very clear in March 2010 when three attorneys threatened to sue him.

So, again, who thought it was wise to do that?

Rose, the NBA's reigning Most Valuable Player, will make hundreds of millions of dollars in his career, and all Memphis had to do to benefit from that was stay on good terms with the Chicago Bulls point guard. Remember how Carmelo Anthony donated $3 million to Syracuse to help build a practice facility named in his honor? It's reasonable to think Rose, whose next contract will likely be worth more than he could ever spend, might've done something similar for Memphis someday. But why would he now? Why would he donate big money to Memphis after Martin Zummach, a past president of the Memphis alumni association, threatened to sue him during his second season in the NBA?

Answer: I have no idea.

So congratulations, Memphis attorneys/boosters.

You made your threats and got some money, and I suppose that's good on some level. But including Rose in all this was silly and shortsighted. Yes, I realize he's now obligated to "consider … making a suitable donation” to the Tiger Scholarship Fund sometime before 2015, according to the agreement he signed. But if I were Rose I'd consider it only for a second, then simply decide I'd rather not.
Posted on: October 6, 2011 12:04 pm
Edited on: October 6, 2011 12:05 pm

The Big East is standing still, getting killed

By Gary Parrish

The next move in the ongoing game of conference realignment has been made.

And the Big 12 made it.

Which is why the Big 12 seems poised to survive in this eat-or-be-eaten world of college athletics while the Big East continues to get picked apart by anybody and everybody. Pittsburgh and Syracuse announced last month that they're leaving for the ACC; that took the Big East down to seven football-playing schools. Now TCU, according to my colleague Brett McMurphy, is headed to the Big 12 and leaving the Big East with just six football-playing schools ... at least one of which (Connecticut) has made it clear it would like to find a new home, too. Meantime, the Big East has done nothing of note. The league is just sitting there taking punches to the face, one after another, and, consequently, sooner or later, it'll be down for the count and in no position to adequately recover.

The possible additions of Army and Navy won't fix the Big East's problems.

At this point, I can't imagine anything really will.

What the Big East should've done is tried to take advantage of the Big 12's turmoil last month and offered invitations to any Midwest school willing to leave the Texas-Oklahoma fight behind. It might not have worked, obviously. But if we've learned anything over the past few years it's that one way to strengthen yourself is to damage the competition, and that's something the ACC highlighted when it targeted Pittsburgh and Syracuse. The Big 12, under new leadership, also understands this approach. But the Big East never has and apparently never will. So it can add Army and Navy if it wants, and perhaps East Carolina, Temple, UCF and SMU, too. But the decision to be reactive rather than proactive has put the Big East in a nearly impossible situation, and, truth be told, the storied league has only itself to blame.
Posted on: October 5, 2011 1:59 pm
Edited on: October 5, 2011 2:02 pm

Summer hoops coach is 'most wanted' fugitive

By Gary Parrish

Summer basketball coaches are generally viewed as sketchy characaters because too many of them are involved in the sport for the wrong reasons, and more of them than you probably realize are on the take from agents or boosters or college assistants. Or, in some cases, all three. Which is not to suggest all summer coaches are bad people. Because they're not. It's just that enough of them are sketchy enough to make observers paint with a broad brush, and the "Most Wanted Fugitives" list in The Commercial Appeal newspaper in Memphis will do nothing to help that perception because a prominent summer coach is listed in the top 20.

Click this link and you'll find a mugshot of Memphis Select coach William Rhodes.

He's reportedly wanted for aggravated assault, for a violation of bail conditions and for a violation of a protection order. "If you have information regarding [this individual]," the site says, "please contact the Shelby County Sheriff's Office Fugitive Bureau." Now guess who has information regarding this individual? Me! According to MemphisSelectBoys.com, Rhodes is at Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church every Thursday night from 6 to 8 working out prospects who are "interested in being skillfull and sound" players. So I'd suggest starting there, Shelby County Sheriff's Office. You can thank me later.
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: October 3, 2011 12:50 pm
Edited on: October 3, 2011 12:53 pm

Example No. 396 of why basketball doesn't matter

By Gary Parrish

It's not like we needed a reminder that basketball is largely irrelevant in the world of conference realignment, but we got one Sunday when ESPN.com's Andy Katz reported that the Big East is considering offering SMU an invitation to join its BCS-affiliated league. That's the same SMU that is barely above .500 (1,169-1,115) in its basketball program's 94-year history. The same SMU that is 21-57 the past five seasons in Conference USA. And the same SMU that hasn't been to the NCAA tournament since 1993, i.e., back when Guns N' Roses still featured Axl and Slash, and before Prince had ever even considered calling himself anything other than, you know, Prince.

The Big East wants that SMU?

Answer: Maybe -- because that SMU would help in the Dallas television market, and because that SMU is suddenly relevant again in football (thanks to June Jones and the school's commitment to June Jones). Those two things -- notable television markets and respectable football programs -- are the two most important things in conference realignment. Great basketball won't really help anybody's cause. Traditionally terrible basketball doesn't seem to hurt.

Consequently, Matt Doherty just might end up back in the Big East.

He started there (at Notre Dame) and could finish there (at SMU), too.

It's the circle of life, I guess.

It's also kind of crazy.
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: September 29, 2011 5:57 am
Edited on: September 29, 2011 6:07 am

Meet Chris Jones -- future JUCO All-American

By Gary Parrish

I wrote a column this week about two of Bruce Pearl's former assistants who are now coaching at a junior college.

(If you haven't read it, it's right here.)

The story focuses on how the lives of Steve Forbes and Jason Shay have changed since they were fired because Pearl was photographed hosting a recruit at his home in violation of NCAA rules, so I didn't really get into the basketball taking place at Northwest Florida State. But it's good basketball. Forbes and Shay have assembled a roster that could compete for a national title and is highlighted by a player who was supposed to be a Tennessee Vol.

"I thought I'd be at Tennessee, but I'm glad I'm here," said Chris Jones, a high-scoring product of Melrose High in Memphis who committed to the Vols in January 2010 but landed in junior college for academic reasons. "I'm glad I'm here because I'm with a group of good guys who are trying to help me get to the next level."

And he'll get there, almost certainly.

Jones is a 5-9 point guard -- strong and explosive and gifted. He was the Most Valuable Player of the Tennessee State Tournament during his final year at Melrose, and it's worth noting that McDonald's All-American Adonis Thomas was also on that team. Put another way, Jones was more important to Melrose's success than the more-heralded Thomas, but Jones never got the same kind of hype in the city because he flourished relatively late and played opposite White Station High's Joe Jackson, a McDonald's All-American who is now a sophomore at Memphis. Josh Pastner chose to recruit Jackson and not Jones for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is that most didn't think Jackson and Jones could play together. They had a pretty intense rivalry in high school, one that Jones used to place a massive chip on his own shoulder.

"Every time somebody says 'Joe,' I get 50 [points]," Jones said. "Whenever somebody would tell me Joe is better than me, I'd give them 50."

That's only a slight exaggeration. And if you're wondering whether Pastner's desire to have Jones be a part of the Memphis program has changed, the answer is yes. The third-year coach spent Monday watching Jones workout at Northwest Florida State. He's a clear target for the Class of 2013.

"I've opened Memphis' eyes," Jones said. "Memphis is beating down the door to get me now."

Lots of other schools are too.
Posted on: September 26, 2011 10:36 am
Edited on: September 26, 2011 10:45 am

NCAA labels OSU freshman Ross as non-qualifer

By Gary Parrish

The NCAA has declared Ohio State freshman LaQuinton Ross a non-qualifier, a source confirmed to CBSSports.com on Monday. Consequently, the 6-foot-8 forward will not attend OSU this year. A source told CBSSports.com that Ross will "return home" to Mississippi, "take a class and retake the SAT."

CBSSports.com ranked Ross 13th in the Class of 2011.

The Buckeyes are still expected to be a consensus top-five team.
Posted on: September 26, 2011 12:05 am
Edited on: September 26, 2011 9:22 am

Arizona's Parrom shot in dispute over woman

By Gary Parrish

Arizona junior Kevin Parrom was shot in the leg this weekend in New York during a reported dispute over a woman.

"Kevin Parrom went home this weekend to visit his mother, who is in the hospital," Arizona athletic director Greg Byrne said via a statement released late Sunday. "While in New York City, he was the victim of a shooting. Rest assured, Kevin’s well being is our primary concern."

Arizona coach Sean Miller said he expects Parrom, a New York native, back in Tucson this week.

"I have been in contact with Kevin and his family throughout the weekend and look forward to his return to Tucson and being back in class this week," Miller said. "Our focus is on Kevin’s health right now. Once we have more information, we’ll be able to address his potential return to team activities."

Parrom averaged 7.6 points and 3.4 rebounds last season.
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: September 22, 2011 2:52 pm
Edited on: September 22, 2011 2:59 pm

Stanback pleads guilty, gets one-game suspension

By Gary Parrish

Dave Rice announced Thursday that he has suspended Chace Stanback for UNLV's season opener against Grand Canyon University. The development came on the same day that the 6-foot-8 forward pleaded guilty to driving under the influence of marijuana.

“Chace is a quality person who has had an outstanding track record in three-plus years at UNLV,” Rice said. “That said, he made a bad decision that negatively impacted our program. We can’t have that.”

Stanback's arrest came in May.

His guilty plea will require him to pay a $585 fine and perform 40 hours of community service.

"I regret the decision that I made and I apologize to everyone who cares about UNLV and Runnin’ Rebel basketball," Stanback said. "I made a terrible mistake. I have learned a lot about myself through this process and I hope people are willing to forgive me."

Stanback is UNLV's top returning scorer.

He averaged 13.0 points and 5.9 rebounds per game last season.

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