Posted on: July 16, 2009 1:47 am
Edited on: July 16, 2009 1:49 am
All Ohio Red won the Nike Peach Jam with a 62-53 victory over Team Final late Wednesday.
Class of 2010 star Jared Sullinger -- the subject of a recent column -- got 19 points and 21 rebounds in the win.
Class of 2011 star Michael Gilchrist -- the subject of a recent column -- got 19 points and seven rebounds in the loss.
Posted on: January 21, 2009 2:41 pm
There's a video making the rounds today of Ohio State's B.J. Mullens, one that shows the importance of his 15-point effort in Sunday's win over Michigan. Without it, OSU might not have defeated Michigan, and that would've been terrible for Mullens considering that before the game he said in an interview that the Wolverines "suck" and that OSU would "beat them pretty bad."
Seriously, it's classic.
And next week's rematch should be fun.
Anyway, here's the link.
Posted on: November 7, 2008 10:19 am
Edited on: November 7, 2008 10:21 am
Here's Friday's Dear Gary ...
Dear Gary: Who do you think will be a surprise Elite Eight or Final Four team this season? Could it be the Gonzaga Bulldogs, who are trying to make a statement from their earlier disappointments? Could it be UNLV, which by a slim few are projected to be for real? Or do you have somebody else in mind?
First, Gonzaga making the Elite Eight will not be a surprise. That's a preseason top 10 team with one of the nation's best rosters. So regardless of what the Zags have or have not done in the past, it should shock nobody if they end up in the Elite Eight or even the Final Four.
Anyway, how about this: Let's identify teams ranked outside the top 20 of the AP poll who might make an Elite Eight.
I'll list four.
2. Wake Forest
3. Ohio State
I picked all four based on the idea that they have the talent to advance. I love Syracuse's roster (specifically Jonny Flynn), Wake Forest and Ohio State have great young players and Alabama intrigues me because of the possibilities with Ron Steele and JaMychal Green. So anyway, I guess those are my "surprise" teams for this season.
Posted on: October 27, 2008 11:11 am
Here's Monday's Dear Gary ...
Dear Gary: I see you called Arizona one of the "top 10 programs in America" last week. I'm fairly sure you also stated as much about Indiana when that job was open. So what are the top 10 programs?
What I mean when I describe something as a "top 10 program" is that it should be one of the top 10 programs in America when everything is going the right way. Obviously, that's not the case at Arizona right now. But assuming Jim Livengood makes a great hire I believe Arizona will again establish itself as one of the top 10 programs in America.
Does that make sense?
If not, try to think of it like this: Pretend you are the nation's hottest coaching candidate and attached to no particular school or region. Now pretend every school wants to hire you and then try to determine which 10 jobs would give you the best chance to succeed based upon factors like the level of national prestige, the recruiting advantages (geographic or otherwise), the passion of the fanbase and the commitment from the administration.
That's how you determine a great program.
In that case, my list would probably look like this:
1. North Carolina
Posted on: October 3, 2008 1:17 pm
Edited on: October 21, 2008 4:58 pm
Here's Friday's Dear Gary ...
Dear Gary: Why is Ohio State not in the mix of Top 25 (and one) teams? This year we have the No. 3 recruiting class. Oh, and we will we be ranked in 2010 when we have the No. 1 recruit class?
Let's start by addressing your final statement, that Ohio State will have the No. 1 recruiting class in 2010. For the record, I agree, because it certainly appears to be shaping up that way. But a great recruiting class in 2010 has nothing to do with the Top 25 (and one) for the 2008-09 season because those prospects won't play until the 2010-11 season.
So it was a nice statement.
But it has nothing to do with this Top 25 (and one).
Anyway, back to this version of the Buckeyes.
According to Rivals.com, OSU's incoming class was ranked fifth (not third), and that's pretty damn good. I love B.J. Mullens; he's been great every time I've ever seen him. But this is still an NIT team replacing its top three scorers (Jamar Butler, Kosta Koufos and Othello Hunter), and that's not typically a recipe for success. To be clear, I know Thad Matta has never had a bad team in his life, proof being how he's coached eight seasons and always won at least 24 games. But when you lose as much production as Ohio State is losing without replacing it with Greg Oden and Mike Conley, I think it's fair to take a wait-and-see approach, which is all I'm doing. And if I see what I like once the season starts, I'll then adjust accordingly, I promise.
Posted on: June 3, 2008 11:19 pm
Edited on: June 4, 2008 12:42 am
Iowa State standout Wesley Johnson has been granted a release to transfer to any one of eight schools.
On the list are Arkansas, Connecticut, Marquette, Ohio State, Pittsburgh, Syracuse, Villanova and West Virginia. Fine programs, all of them. But it was hard not to notice that Kentucky, Alabama and TCU were not included because those have been the three schools most connected to Johnson in recent weeks, so much so that sources have told CBSSports.com that the Iowa State staff privately felt behind-the-scenes tampering could've led to Johnson's initial decision to transfer.
Obviously, there is no proof. That's why everybody has mostly been quiet. But it appears ISU made it clear to Johnson that Kentucky, Alabama and TCU were not schools to which it would automatically release him. Otherwise, those institutions would've certainly made the list.
Posted on: April 2, 2008 11:38 am
Tuesday was a crazy day.
First Sean Sutton was canned.
Then Tom Crean bolted for Indiana.
All the attention paid to those developments made me lose track of a few things I wanted to address here. But now I'm going to address them here because I'm in between radio interviews and have a few minutes to type.
-- Hopson commits to Vols --
It was no surprise when Bruce Pearl expressed his desire to remain at Tennessee on Tuesday.
You would too if Scotty Hopson just committed to your school.
Hopson pledged his allegiance to the Vols on a Tuesday visit, meaning Pearl will now coach -- unless I'm forgetting somebody -- his first McDonald's All-American next season. The 6-foot-7 wing is a dynamic scorer, somebody who should be a starter from the outset and help offset the losses of Chris Lofton and JaJuan Smith. So this is a huge deal by any measuring stick -- a credit to the work of UT assistant Steve Forbes, who has been relentless in his approach to Hopson since the Kentucky native opted not to go ahead with his commitment to Mississippi State in the early signing period.
-- Western Kentucky is looking for a coach --
Hiring an assistant at a major program worked last time for Western Kentucky.
That's why it's likely the school will move similarly to replace Darrin Horn.
And the obvious choice is Texas assistant Ken McDonald.
McDonald worked at WKU from 1998-2003 and helped Dennis Felton lead the Hilltoppers to three NCAA tournament appearances before leaving with Felton to take over at Georgia. McDonald spent one year there and then joined Rick Barnes' staff at Texas, where he has assisted his boss in further establishing the Longhorns as one of the elite programs in the country.
Far as coaching searches go, this should be simple.
McDonald makes sense at WKU on a lot of levels.
He'd be good there.
-- There will be no Florida-Ohio State NIT final --
Ohio State beat Ole Miss in the NIT semifinals.
But Florida lost to UMass.
Consequently, we will not have a Florida-Ohio State NIT title game this season, which will deny us a repeat of last year's NCAA tournament title game. And that's too bad. But Ohio State still has a chance to snag another runners-up trophy if it can manage a loss to UMass. So that's a reason to watch the championship, if you were looking for one.
Posted on: March 26, 2008 11:24 am
CHARLOTTE -- You're probably not keeping up with the NIT, and for that I can't blame you. But it's worth nothing that Florida advanced to the semifinals Tuesday night with a victory at Arizona State, meaning the Gators are now just two wins away from their third straight national title.
Yes, that's a little misleading.
But the NIT is considered a "national" title.
And it's also interesting that Ohio State is on the other side of the bracket.
In other words, we could be heading towards a repeat of last year's national title game -- minus Greg Oden, Mike Conley, Daequan Cook, Ron Lewis, Ivan Harris, Joakim Noah, Corey Brewer, Taurean Green, Lee Humphrey, Al Horford, Chris Richard and, of course, CBS. So it wouldn't be quite the same, I admit. But it's still difficult to argue that these two programs aren't benefitting from the experience, if only because it's allowing their young players to have additional practice time while notching victories.
For instance, had Florida not experienced the NIT it would've entered next season having to answer questions about all sorts of things, among them whether this group was capable of beating a good team on the road. But the Gators spent Tuesday night beating a good team on the road -- specifically an Arizona State team that had previously beaten five NCAA tournament participants at home, among them Stanford and Xavier. And my guess is that'll help Billy Donovan in the long run, aid his quest to return to the NCAA tournament next season.