The Morning Mix

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– Fran Fraschilla fills us in on the guys who will be forced to replace NBA prospects (Insiders Only)

– So maybe Larry Brown does know what he’s doing. Jeff Goodman is reporting that SMU is close to landing troubled-Arizona transfer Josiah Turner as well as former-Illini guard Crandall Head. Both players would be major “gets” for the Mustangs. Goodman makes a great point: Brown has dealt with head cases before. He’s coached both Allen Iverson and Rasheed Wallace, both of whom are all-world caliber head cases

– Western Kentucky transfer Vinny Zollo still doesn’t know his future become of silly APR-related shenanigans

– The Maryland Terrapins were supposed to be a team to watch out for in 2012-2013, but the past 48 hours have not been kind to the Terps. Pe’Shon Howard got arrested for disorderly conduct, and Terrell Stoglin and Mychal Parker were suspended for a full season. Instead of sitting out the year, Parker will opt to transfer and Stoglin will enter the NBA draft. Howard will return, but is currently rehabbing an injury and his status for next season is up in the air. The quality of the Terps program is certainly up in the air as well

– Seriously, when was the last time NC-State was the favorite to win the ACC? It has to be at least 25 years since that’s happened

– Yes Tar Heels fan, you are correct, there are a lot of bizarre things going on in the ACC right now

– Rob Jones, a rising senior at St. Mary’s is one of the most ferocious-looking players in the country. He is so terrifying that the Minnesota Vikings actually extended a training camp invite to the power forward

– Duke assistant coach Chris Collins will not be the next head coach at Illinois State despite heavy speculation

– According to a report from the Lexington Herald-Ledger, Louisville has the most intrinsic value of any college basketball team in the county. Unfortunately for their Cardinals, intrinsic value won’t help cu down the nets

The WAC is on its last legs. UT-San Antonio and Texas State have decided not to join and Utah State is headed to the Mountain West. The Aggies have had a very solid hoops program for the past decade or so, and a move to the MWC should help boost it’s profile

– After a month of weighing his options, North Texas sophomore Tony Mitchell has decided to return to school. The Green Terror could be a sexy mid-major pick to crack the top-25 at the beginning of next season

The Big East is going to see it’s fair share of turnover. The conference has nine players leaving for the NBA,  21 graduating seniors and even more transfers

– Purdue’s Robbie Hummel received the Big Ten Conference’s Medal of Honor. Robbie’s dad Glenn won the same award back in 1976. It’s damn near impossible to not absolutely love this kid. His presence in college hoops will be sorely missed

– Oh, I should have mentioned, UTSA and Texas State are joining the Sun Belt. Don’t look now, but the Sun Belt is going to be pretty good the next couple of years. Denver gets better every season, Middle Tennessee just gave Kermit Davis an extension, North Texas returns a potential lottery pick, and Arkansas-Little Rock is always a tough out. Look for the Sun Belt to make the leap from “low-major” to “mid-major”

– According to a e report, former-Kentucky player Richie Farmer abused state power by using state-regulated workers for his own personal services

– Morehead State head coach Donnie Tyndall will be named the next head coach at Southern Miss, replacing Larry Eustachy, who left in order to take the Colorado State job

– With Butler about to make its move to the Atlantic-10, Cleveland State might be given an interesting opportunity

– After what took place this past season, you would think it’s a lead-pipe-lock that Indiana and Kentucky continue their non-conference rivalry. But the future of the game seems to be up in the air. How much is a IU/UK game really worth?

– Former-Virginia Tech assistant coach James Johnson will be named the new head coach of the Hokies. Johnson initially left VaTech early in the off-season to take a job at Clemson, but will return to Blacksburg to man the sidelines next season. But how long will it take before Johnson has this program up and running again?

Binghamton has fired head coach Mark Macon after just two seasons at the helm, including a 2-29 finish this year. Who are the candidates for the job? Oh nobody really, just a certain former high-major coach with a propensity for fine women’s accessories and a limited amount of self-control

UConn assistant coach Glen Miller is among the favorites for the head coaching position at Brown

 

Troy Machir is the managing editor of the college basketball website Ballin’ is a Habit. You can find him on twitter @TroyMachir.

LaVar Ball having ‘zero’ interaction with UCLA team bodes well for next season

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With the NBA Draft looming in less than a month, the biggest talking point has been just how much of an impact LaVar Ball is going to have on his son, Lonzo’s, NBA career.

It’s a question worth asking given the, ahem, outspoken nature of the eldest Ball.

But in the collegiate ranks, that’s a question that’s been asked about UCLA regarding next season. While Lonzo and LaMelo, who is finishing up his sophomore season in high school, are the stars that get the majority of the attention, there is another Ball brother that will be enrolling at UCLA next season: LiAngelo.

LaVar has already said that he expect Gelo to be a one-and-done player, which may not jibe with how good Gelo actually is. He’s not Lonzo and he’s not LaMelo. He’s not a dynamic athlete or a lead guard. He’s a 6-foot-5, 200 pound shooter with limitless range but limited upside. There’s a reason Rivals ranks him as a three-star prospect.

What’s going to happen when UCLA, a top 15 team in the NBC Sports Preseason Top 25, doesn’t give Gelo Lonzo-esque minutes or shots next season? How will LaVar handle it if his second son is coming off the bench for the Bruins?

Steve Alford doesn’t seem concerned about it, telling a reporter from the LA Times that LaVar was “never at practice, never called me” and was around the team “zero.”

“I think all parents probably should know that moving on to the collegiate level anyway,” Alford said. “It’s not high school, it’s not AAU. Your son’s on scholarship; your son’s at UCLA getting an incredible opportunity academically and athletically.

“Playing time, shots, that kind of stuff — we don’t entertain some of those phone calls anyway. I never had any issues at all with LaVar.”

It will be interesting to see if that continues next season.

The Bruins have a chance to be pretty good. Maybe not quite as good as last season, maybe not a Pac-12 title favorite or even the best team in LA — USC is loaded — but I wouldn’t be shocked to see them end up as a top four seed in the NCAA tournament with Aaron Holiday and Thomas Welsh returning and Jaylen Hands headlining the recruiting class.

Will LaVar be able to handle UCLA’s success if it comes at the expense of his son’s?

NCAA: Former USF assistant provided extra benefits, lied to NCAA investigators

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The NCAA has alleged that former South Florida assistant coach Oliver Antigua provided roughly $500 in impermissible benefits and initially lied to NCAA investigators about it, according to the Tampa Bay Times, who obtained the NCAA’s summary disposition report.

Oliver Antigua is the younger brother of Orlando Antigua, who was the head coach at USF until he was fired in January. Now an assistant on Brad Underwood’s staff at Oklahoma State, Orlando was not alleged to have committed an NCAA violation in the report.

Oliver is alleged to have provided the extra benefits to two student-athletes while they were being tutored by the sister-in-law of Gerald Gillion, a special assistant to Orlando who resigned last fall, four months after Oliver did. USF has already self-imposed a $5,000 and reduced their scholarships from 13 to 12, according to the report.

“The University of South Florida and the NCAA continue to work together to resolve the inquiry into violations of NCAA bylaws and university standards by a USF intercollegiate athletic program,” according to a statement released by the school. “USF anticipates having a final resolution with the NCAA sometime this fall. Until the process concludes and the matter is fully resolved, USF cannot provide further comment.”

Villanova lands four-star 2018 guard

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Villanova added its first recruit in the Class of 2018 on Wednesday night.

Jay Wright and his staff landed a verbal commitment from Paul VI Catholic High School’s Brandon Slater, a four-star guard by Rivals as the No. 42 overall prospect in the rising senior class.

The 6-foot-5 Slater announced his decision via Twitter.

Slater, according to Jeff Borzello of ESPN, picked the Wildcats over Maryland, Miami, South Carolina, and Virginia.

He is currently playing the Nike EYBL with Team Takeover, the same grassroots program that produced current Villanova guard Phil Booth.

Comic-Con forces Providence to play at Alumni Hall for home opener

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Providence will play its first game at Alumni Hall, the on-campus facility, for the first time in 35 years this fall.

The Friars unveiled their 2017-18 non-conference schedule on Thursday afternoon. The team’s home opener will play either Houston Baptist or Belmont in Mullaney Gym inside Alumni Hall.

According to Kevin McNamara of the Providence Journal, the reason for that is a schedule conflict at Providence’s home arena, the Dunkin’ Donuts Center, in downtown Providence. A Comic-Con convention is scheduled Nov. 10-12. As McNamara notes, it’s a busy part of the season for The Dunk. The arena also is home to the Providence Bruins, the American Hockey League affiliate of the Boston Bruins, and by mid-November, their season is in full swing.

The Friars haven’t played at Alumni Hall since 1972, the same year the Dunkin’ Donuts Center was opened. In the three decades since Providence last played a regular season game there, the facility has gone under necessary renovations, as you could imagine. Even with added seats, Mullaney Gym can host a maximum of 1,549. That’s a fraction of what The Dunk’s capacity of 12,400.

Providence will return to its downtown home on Nov. 13, hosting Minnesota as part of the Gavitt Games. The Golden Gophers will likely be a top-20 team to open the season. The Friars, who bring back every notable player from last year’s NCAA Tournament team, is a fringe top-25 team.

Jalen Coleman-Lands to transfer out of Illinois

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The already-thin Illinois roster got thinner on Thursday afternoon.

Evan Daniels of Scout.com reported that sophomore guard Jalen Coleman-Lands has requested and received his release from the program. He will have to sit out next season but will have two years of eligibility remaining.

Coleman-Lands was a top-40 recruit in the Class of 2015, according to Rivals. He becomes the second player from that recruiting class this month to exit the school. Reserve guard D.J. Williams elected to transfer on May 8. With Jeremiah Tilmon and Javon Pickett, two incoming recruits, both previously reopened their recruitments following John Groce’s firing.

Even with the addition of Wright State graduate transfer Mark Alstork, who officially joined the Fighting Illini on Wednesday, Illinois is left with only nine scholarship players as of right now.

Coleman-Lands’ production dipped from his freshman campaign, ending the 2016-17 season averaging 8.0 points and 2.3 rebounds per game, shooting 38 percent from three.

One destination that will likely be rumored will be nearby DePaul. Coleman-Lands played for new DePaul assistant coach Shane Heirman at prep school powerhouse La Lumiere School. Heriman quickly tapped into that prep pipeline, helping secure a commitment from La Lumiere from five-star 2019 point guard Tyger Campbell earlier this month.

Coleman-Lands had taken official visits to Notre Dame and UNLV before committing to the Illini in September 2014.