Basketball’s the same everywhere — except the ball

1 Comment

Basketball’s the same at every D-I school. Rims are 10 feet high, free-throws are from 15 feet away and the court’s 50 feet wide and 94 feet long.

Only thing that changes is the ball.

NCAA rules mandate a ball that weighs between 20 and 22 ounces, features a circumference between 29½ and 30 inches, can be orange, red-orange or brown and must be spherical. Those differences are enough to throw some shooters off, but not nearly as much as the un-regulated difference.

There’s no set brand.

As this N.Y. Times story details, ball brands vary throughout the game. Spalding, Nike, adidas, it’s up to the home team. Some feel slick, some have deeper grooves than others. And those things make a difference to a shooter.

“It’s definitely a difference, and I think that’s something that goes under the radar sometimes,” Pittsburgh guard Ashton Gibbs told the paper. “It affects a little bit of everything: the handle, the gripping of it and the shooting of the ball. You just have to get used to it.”

It makes for an interesting read, mostly for how teams try to gain an advantage at home by using a specific type (Wisconsin prefers Spalding). But some think it’s not that big of a deal.

“They’re all round; they’re all pretty much the same size,” Florida State guard Luke Loucks said. “It’s like the same argument with adjusting to hoops. And as much as balls do vary in composition and feel, they’re all still basketballs.”

It should be noted Loucks shoots 28.9 percent from 3.

You also can follow me on Twitter @MikeMillerNBC.

Wichita State’s Anton Grady improving after being hospitalized

James Woodard, Anton Grady, Ron Baker
AP Photo
Leave a comment

Wichita State senior forward Anton Grady received some positive news on Saturday as a neurosurgeon reviewed MRI results, which are negative for spinal cord trauma.

According to a release from Wichita State, doctors believed Grady suffered a spinal cord concussion during a collision on Friday after he was taken off the floor in a stretcher and taken to a hospital in an ambulance. CT and MRI scans on Friday both turned up negative, but the news of Saturday’s results are an even more encouraging sign for Grady.

The injury for Grady occurred during a Friday loss to Alabama during the AdvoCare Invitational as the senior’s condition has improved since the collision. Grady will receive physical therapy over the next few days and doctors will check his progress before he is released from the hospital.

Grady has been alert and responsive to questions and had feeling in his extremities on Friday, but the use of his arms and legs was limited. By Saturday morning, Grady had improved the use of his extremities.

The 6-foot-8 Grady has averaged 9 points and 6 rebounds per game this season in his first season with the Shockers. The Cleveland State transfer is shooting 39 percent from the field.

Colorado’s Tory Miller reprimanded by Pac-12 after biting opponent

Dusan Ristic, Tory Miller
AP Photo
Leave a comment

Colorado sophomore forward Tory Miller has been reprimanded by the Pac-12 and he also apologized for biting Air Force’s Hayden Graham earlier this week.

During Colorado’s win over Air Force on Wednesday, Miller was assessed a Flagrant 2 Dead Ball Technical Foul and ejected with 12:25 left in the second half after biting Graham during a loose ball.

In a release from the Pac-12, they announced reprimanding Miller, but he will not be suspended.

“All of our student-athletes must adhere to the Pac-12’s Standards of Conduct and Sportsman-ship,” Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott said in the release. “Regardless of Mr. Miller’s frustration and emotion, such behavior is unacceptable and he is being appropriately reprimanded.”

Miller also released his apology in the same release.

“I would like to apologize for my actions during the Air Force game. I would like to apologize to Hayden Graham, Air Force, my teammates and fans. It was a heat of the moment thing. I’m an emotional player, but I let my emotions get the best of me. I will use this as a learning experience and focus on helping my teammates and respecting my opponents for the rest of the season and beyond,” Miller said.

For Miller to not be suspended for this is good news for him and Colorado since he won’t miss any additional action, but did the Pac-12 make the right decision on this?