NCAA Basketball Tournament - Southern Mississippi v Kansas State

Report: Samuels received improper benefits from his AAU coach

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It looks like we now have some insight as to why Jamar Samuels was suspended.

Speaking to Austin Meek, a writer for the Topeka Capital-Journal, Samuels’ AAU coach Curtis Malone, who runs powerhouse program DC Assault, said that he was the reason Samuels was suspended and it was because he gave the senior some money.

“There hasn’t been anything extravagant or large lumps,” Malone said. “I don’t just give a kid money. It’s the same way when he played with DC Assault on road trips. When he didn’t have money to eat, he ate.”

Jeff Goodman of CBSSports.com confirmed that it was a $200 wire transfer from Malone to Samuels. Malone said he was unaware of the rule.

“If I wanted to hide it, I would have done it differently,” he said. “He needed money to eat.”

Malone doesn’t believe that was he did was an impermissible benefit as he has a prior relationship with Samuels and his mother from their AAU days. Martin, who nearly broke down into tears after the game, went on record as saying that he didn’t believe that Samuels committed a violation.

Last October, Malone was in the news because another former player Michael Beasley had filed a lawsuit against him. Beasley claimed that Malone had conspired with agent Joel Bell to steer the player to Bell in exchange for bankrolling Malone’s AAU team.

I feel awful for Samuels. He was a senior. This was his final college basketball game ever. That hurts.

Rob Dauster is the editor of the college basketball website Ballin’ is a Habit. You can find him on twitter @robdauster.

POSTERIZED: Pensacola State’s Jamal Thomas dunks through block attempt, makes coach go nuts

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A solid poster dunk went down in the junior college ranks last night as Pensacola State sophomore Jamal Thomas finished a dunk through a block attempt against Northwest Florida State.

The 6-foot-3 Thomas used his power and momentum to go through the opposing shot blocker and the play made his head coach, Pete Pena, go nuts with an over-exaggerated fist pump. The video is short, but be sure to watch for Pena’s reaction near the logo at the top right of the screen.

VIDEO: Boise State robbed of insane, buzzer-beating win on incorrect timing by officials

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It looked like James Webb III of Boise State had hit the season’s craziest buzzer-beater.

With 0.8 seconds left, he caught an in-bounds pass on the run on the right wing, hoisted up a prayer of a three and watched as it banked it as the buzzer sounded.

It’s pretty fantastic:

And it also clearly left his hands before time expired, but there was a reason for that. According to the officials, the clock (for the road team, mind you) did not start when the ball was caught.

They were right.

Where they were wrong was determining that it took more than a second for Webb to catch and release the shot, meaning that they were wrong to waive off the bucket.

This awesome slo-mo clip of the shot from Matt Stephens of the Coloradoan is all the evidence I need, but if you need more, Sportscenter anchor Scott Van Pelt clocked it at 0.7 seconds:

The game would go to overtime, where Colorado State would go on to win, 97-93.

As you can imagine, Boise State players and coaches were livid with the call.

“I hope it’s not a situation where you get an apology later but don’t get the win. I don’t understand it,” head coach Leon Rice said in a radio interview after the game. “I hope they got it right somehow, some way. I don’t know. It didn’t look right to me, but I’m not the official.”

This comes just four days after officials blew a call in a game between New Mexico and San Diego State that allowed the Aztecs to force overtime and eventually beat the Lobos. (That call may have determined the outcome of the Mountain West regular season title, to boot.)

New Mexico was essentially told, “my bad”, but the league as a result.

And Boise State will probably get the same treatment despite the fact that, if the league determines that the referees botched this call as well, the tame technically was over then.

Will they have the guts to award the Broncos a road win that they earned and deserve?

I doubt it.

UPDATE: Here’s a statement from the officiating crew: