Virginia Tech Hokies' Finney-Smith, Raines, Green and Duke Blue Devils' Plumlee battle for a rebound during their college basketball tournament game in Atlanta

Virginia Tech’s recruiting presence is one guy

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In a way, Virginia Tech’s decision to fire head coach Seth Greenberg in April was a case of cutting off one’s nose to spite one’s face. The Hokies declined to fire Greenberg for his win-loss record in March, then dumped him a month and a half later because all of his assistants quit on him.

Whether you think that’s a valid reason to fire someone or not, there’s little doubt that the move took away the one coach the Hokies had left, the only guy who could have possibly gone out on the recruiting trail this spring. So what are the maroon and orange doing about this sorry state of affairs? Let the inimitable David Teel of the Newport News Daily Press give you the depressing (but oddly charming) rundown of the Hokie presence at this weekend’s Nike EYBL event:

Virginia Tech’s sole representative was John Janovsky, who wore his Hokies garb proudly.

Janovsky has never coached at the Division I level, but he appeared more than comfortable after his battlefield promotion in the wake of Seth Greenberg’s firing.

Prior to Greenberg’s exit, assistant coaches Rob Ehsan, James Johnson and John Richardson, plus operations director Jeff Wulbrun, resigned. That left Janovsky, a former assistant at Division II Indiana of Pennsylvania with myriad Division I contacts.

Janovsky spent this past season as Tech’s video coordinator. When Wulbrun left for an assistant’s job at Alabama-Birmingham, Greenberg promoted Janovsky to the operations gig.

With no coaches on staff to travel during this month’s evaluation window, Janovsky passed the required NCAA recruiting test and headed to last weekend’s EYBL session in Minneapolis, plus Washington-area high schools Paul VI and Sidwell Friends.

Maybe a video coordinator in head coach’s clothes is better than nothing. It’s hard to say.

Teel has also done a good job of keeping track of realistic (an important distinction) possible replacements for Greenberg, including Loyola’s Jimmy Patsos and Lehigh’s Brett Reed, both of whom led their teams to the NCAA tournament this season. Reed’s upset of Duke might make him a very popular candidate, indeed.

VIDEOS: Rhode Island, Maryland exchange heated words in Cancun

Dan Hurley
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No. 2 Maryland finally found their rhythm on Wednesday night, blowing out a good Rhode Island team, 86-63, in the finals of the Cancun Challenge.

Melo Trimble and Rasheed Sulaimon combined for 34 points and eight assists on 13-for-14 shooting and Robert Carter added 15 points, nine boards, three assists and three blocks. Peak Maryland, which is what we saw tonight, is really dangerous.

But Peak Maryland wasn’t the story after the game, as tempers flared in the waning minutes.

It started when Maryland coach Mark Turgeon called a timeout with less than two minutes remaining. Jake Layman had just hit a three to put Maryland up by 24 points and Turgeon wanted to get his walk-ons in the game. Hurley said to the Maryland bench, “We’ll see you again, boy,” according to Inside Maryland Sports, which prompted this reaction from Turgeon:

After the game, the two teams had to be separated in layup lines. According to reports from IMS and from the Baltimore Sun, Hurley was cursing at Maryland players as he was shaking their hands after the game. According Doug Gottlieb, who called the game for CBS Sports Network, Trimble said that the Rhode Island team wanted to “fight us”:

Wayne Selden stars as Kansas wins the title in Maui

Wayne Selden Jr., Jeff Roberson
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The last time we wrote about Wayne Selden in this space, it was my colleague Scott Phillips who questioned, after a poor performance in the Champions Classic, whether or not Selden is capable of bring a primary scorer for a team with NCAA title aspirations.

At the time, it wasn’t an unfair question to ask.

Selden is a former top 15 recruit. He is a guy who was expected to go one-and-done that played poorly in the first big game of his third year on campus. But after three days it Maui, it appears that the old Wayne Selden is gone.

[MORE: Kansas got Cheick Diallo news today]

He capped an MVP performance in the Maui Invitational with 25 points and seven boards on 8-for-11 shooting as the No. 5 Kansas Jayhawks knocked off No. 19 Vanderbilt, 70-63, in the title game. Selden was terrific for the entire weekend, averaging 21.5 points in the two games against Division I competition and shooting 12-for-17 from beyond the arc in the three game tournament.

It was the best that we’ve seen Selden play during his Jayhawk career, and it came in a game the Jayhawks desperately needed it. Vanderbilt is a damn good team. They’re ranked 19th, which may actually be too low, and they seem to clearly be the biggest challenger to Kentucky in the SEC. They jumped out to a double-digit lead on Kansas in the first half as the Jayhawks seemed to be sleep-walking early in the game.

Enter Selden. He drilled three threes in the first half and scored 13 of the 26 Jayhawk points to keep them close. In other words, he played like a star on a night Kansas desperately needed someone to step up and play like a star. Remember: this is a dude that had enough talent and potential in high school to be considered a McDonald’s All-American and a potential lottery pick. The ability is there:

(That move is filthy.)

The question has always been whether or not he is capable of putting it all together, of being the guy that can be relied upon to make the big play in the big moment, to carry a team with title aspirations.

And to be fair, the jury is still out in that regard. Are we just going to ignore those four free throws he clanged down the stretch?

But seeing Selden have this kind of performance in a game like this against a team that is this good is unquestionably a positive for Kansas moving forward.