Play Fantasy Use your Fantasy skills to win Cash Prizes. Join or start a league today. Play Now
Posted on: March 2, 2010 4:46 pm

OU's Warren done for season

Oklahoma's Willie Warren will have arthroscopic surgery on his right ankle Wednesday.

The sophomore guard will not return this season.

Warren is averaging 16.3 points per game, but he's been dreadful in a leadership role and clashed with coach Jeff Capel in a pretty public way. Most believe Warren will now enter the NBA Draft, for better or worse, just to get out of college. He was a projected lottery pick last season, and he's still projected as a first-round pick despite injuries and supposed attitude problems.

Oklahoma is 13-16 overall, 4-11 in the Big 12.

The Sooners play Texas A&M on Saturday in the regular-season finale.
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: December 20, 2009 11:29 am
Edited on: December 20, 2009 11:31 am

I hear the drive to Waco is beautiful

ARLINGTON, Texas -- I was at Texas-North Carolina at Cowboys Stadium on Saturday. Now it's Sunday, and I'm headed to UT-Arlington vs. Baylor in Waco. Then I'll be at a double-header -- UTEP vs. Oklahoma/La Salle vs. Oklahoma State -- in Oklahoma City on Monday. Then I'll be in Austin on Tuesday for Michigan State vs. Texas, where I hope to see whether Rick Barnes can figure out a way to play 24 different Longhorns at least five minutes.

Anyway, busy times.

I'm leaving for Waco now.

It'll be my first trip to the Ferrell Center.

I hope it has a 60-yard-long television, just like the one I saw yesterday.
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: November 21, 2009 11:00 pm
Edited on: November 21, 2009 11:22 pm

Smart's third game at VCU results in huge win

The best thing about getting the VCU job as your first job is that it's the VCU job.

It's proved to be a springboard to bigger and better things.

A culture of winning exists around the program.

You're set up to be successful.

But all those things could also be interpreted as bad things for Shaka Smart, because -- as I detailed in a column back in June -- there's nothing simple about being a first-time head coach inheriting a team losing the best player in school history. With Eric Maynor in the NBA, that was the situation Smart walked into, and he knew it. But he also knew the VCU fanbase -- having just watched Jeff Capel and Anthony Grant win consistently -- wouldn't be interested in hearing any excuses for a possible, if not probable, slow start.

"The fans don't care about that," Smart told me this summer, about a month after he was hired away from Billy Donovan's staff at Florida, just like Grant before him. "Their deal is: 'Hey, this guy before you was winning, and we brought you in here to do the same or more.'"

Smart did "the same or more" Saturday night.

His third game as a head coach resulted in an 82-69 win over the 17th-ranked Oklahoma Sooners coached by Capel, whose contract at VCU required him to return to the Siegel Center as a visitor if he ever left for another job. Capel did indeed leave for another job after the 2005-06 season; he replaced Kelvin Sampson at OU. The byproduct (because of the contract) was the Sooners having to serve as the first ranked opponent to ever enter the Siegel Center.

They exited double-digit losers.

Willie Warren missed 11 of 14 shots, including all eight 3-point attempts. The Preseason First Team All-American battled cramps in the second half, finished with eight points and six turnovers, then sat on the bench with a towel draped over his head and watched the VCU students storm the court and celebrate. Off to the side, Smart mostly remained calm and cool. It was a big win, sure. But as he told me when he took the job, this is what he was brought to VCU to do -- to be successful on a relevant level, to maintain a national profile for the Rams,  to win big games just like his predecessors, and maybe even beat one of them, if possible.
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: November 13, 2009 3:10 pm
Edited on: November 13, 2009 3:11 pm

Dear Gary (on Harrison Barnes' decision)

Here's Friday's Dear Gary ...

Dear Gary: Gee what a shock. YOU picking against Duke . A true rarity.

-- Jeff

I didn't predict/guess that Harrison Barnes will announce for North Carolina because of anything that has to do with Duke. I have my reasons, and one of those reasons is because one of the coaches involved in the recruitment (not a UNC coach, by the way) told me he thinks it'll be the Tar Heels. I also have another reason, and I'll share that one with you later, if I'm correct.

In the meantime, here's a text I just got from a coach involved in the recruitment:

"I honestly have no idea."

Pretty suspenseful, huh?
Posted on: November 13, 2009 8:07 am
Edited on: November 13, 2009 8:09 am

Final prediction/guess: Barnes to UNC

Harrison Barnes will announce his college decision Friday at 4 p.m. ET.

At this moment, nobody seems to know where he's headed.

Officially, the nation's top recruit is considering Duke, Iowa State, Kansas, North Carolina, Oklahoma and UCLA, but most believe -- and I've forever reported -- the choice will be Duke or UNC. For the longest time, I've thought Barnes would pick Duke, team with Kyrie Irving and help Mike Krzyzewski get back to the Final Four. And he still might. But my final prediction is that Barnes will sign with North Carolina and become the next great Tar Heel.

To be clear, that's my prediction/guess, nothing more.

If I'm right, I'll explain why I switched to UNC later today.

If I'm wrong, we'll forget all about this and just remember that I predicted Duke a long time ago.

Either way, it's happening at 4 p.m. ET.

Far as recruiting announcements go, it doesn't get bigger.
Posted on: November 5, 2009 4:01 pm
Edited on: November 5, 2009 4:33 pm

Barnes will commit next Friday

Shirley Barnes, the mother of top-ranked recruit Harrison Barnes, confirmed to that her son will announce his college decision Nov. 13.

"H called the coaches," she wrote in an email. "They are aware that he's going to announce by signing his Letter of Intent on Nov. 13."

(That's next Friday, if you don't have a calendar handy.)

Barnes is a 6-foot-6 wing from Ames, Iowa.

He'll pick between Duke, Iowa State, Kansas, North Carolina, Oklahoma and UCLA.

His final visit will be to Iowa State this weekend.
Posted on: October 8, 2009 4:47 pm
Edited on: October 9, 2009 2:16 pm

Aldrich and Warren not consensus All-Big 12?

The Big 12 released its official preseason honors Thursday, and the first thing I noticed was that Texas' Avery Bradley won Freshman of the Year instead of Kansas' Xavier Henry. Truth be told, that's how I'd vote, too (as my All-America teams show). But I wasn't sure if the league's coaches would see things similarly. So I found that interesting.

Anyway, that's the first thing I noticed.

But the next thing I noticed was insane: Cole Aldrich and Willie Warren were not consensus All-Big 12.

Is it as silly as the Tim Tebow snub by Steve Spurrier?

Probably not.

But I'd love to hear somebody explain how Aldrich and Warren -- both of whom are First Team All-Americans -- don't belong on the All-Big 12 team, because there is at least one coach who voted that way. Meantime, Sherron Collins and Craig Brackins were unanimous selections, and I'm OK with that. But not voting for Aldrich and Warren is inexplicable, I think.

Here's how the All-Big 12 team should look:
  • G: Sherron Collins (Kansas)
  • G: Avery Bradley (Texas)
  • G: Willie Warren (Oklahoma)
  • F: Craig Brackins (Iowa State)
  • F: Cole Aldrich (Kansas)
Posted on: September 28, 2009 9:07 am
Edited on: September 28, 2009 9:12 am

Recruiting notes from the weekend

There were some significant recruiting developments this weekend.

Here are some of them:

Irving visits Duke: Kyrie Irving, ranked fifth in the Class of 2010 by, visited Duke, then Tweeted about it. "Duke official was great! I enjoyed every single second," he wrote. "Everything there fits me and is right for never know what will happen ." Duke has long been considered the favorite to land Irving, a 6-foot-1 point guard from New Jersey. Still, Texas A&M is among the schools hanging around, primarily because Aggie assistant Scott Spinelli was college roommates with Irving's father, Drederick Irving.

Selby narrows list: Josh Selby, famous for decommitting from Tennessee in July, has narrowed his list of potential schools to six, and UT is not one of them. The final six are Kansas, Kentucky, Indiana, Baylor, Miami and Syracuse. All indications are that Selby -- a combo guard ranked 14th in the Class of 2010 by -- will make a final decision in the Spring.

Jones narrows list: Class of 2010 standout Terrence Jones trimmed his list of potential schools to seven -- specifically Kansas, Kentucky, UCLA, Arizona, Oklahoma, Washington and Oregon. ranks Jones as the No. 12 prospect in the Class of 2010.

USC gains fifth Class of 2010 pledge: Kevin O'Neill accepted a commitment from Maurice Jones, according to's Evan Daniels. Jones is a 5-7 point guard who reportedly averaged 28 points and 13 assists last season in high school. He's the fifth Class of 2010 prospect to commit to USC despite an ongoing NCAA investigation.
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or