David Stern, Perry Jones III

Returns to school offer a different kind of profit for Jones III, Sullinger

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Baylor forward Perry Jones III and Ohio State forward Jared Sullinger decided last year to return to school despite being projected as lottery selections.

One year and a couple medical red flags later, and it’s likely that they cost themselves some serious money by making that decision.

Neither was invited to sit in the Green Room, and that began the murmurs with many wondering where Jones III and Sullinger would land.

But while both Jones III and Sullinger may be a little lighter in the wallet when considering the rookie wage scale after Thursday’s draft, landing in the positions that they did could prove far more beneficial to their careers down the line.

Sullinger was taken by the Celtics with the 21st pick while Jones, who sat in the stands at the Prudential Center, was selected 28th overall by Western Conference champion Oklahoma City.

“What’s better than learning from one of the best teams?  They were in the Finals,” said Jones III in his post-draft press conference. “They have great players, great coach.  This is just an opportunity for me to grow.”

Both returned to campus to play on teams that enjoyed a great deal of success last season, with Baylor reaching the Elite 8 and Ohio State getting to the Final Four.

But those extra games that NBA scouts and general managers had to evaluate them resulted in both sliding down draft boards, and the pre-draft medical issues didn’t help either.

The question for players such as Jones III and Sullinger is one that’s simple to state yet difficult to answer: do you take the money that comes with being a lock for the lottery or take the chance of hanging around for another season?

That lottery money usually comes with the added responsibility of being the face of a franchise, and in many cases the franchise hasn’t been successful and likely won’t be for a couple years.

But while Jones III and Sullinger ended up benefiting by landing with stable, successful franchises, how often does that happen?

It’s certainly a crap shoot and while these two ended up winning on draft night in that regard, it’s likely best to strike while the iron’s hot.

Raphielle is also the assistant editor at CollegeHoops.net and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.

PREGAME SHOOTAROUND: Kris Dunn vs. Denzel Valentine; Two 6-0 teams from Ohio battle in Orlando

Kris Dunn
AP Photo
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GAME OF THE DAY: No. 3 Michigan State vs. Providence, 9:00 p.m. (ESPN2)

Two Player of the Year candidates lock horns on Sunday night as Michigan State senior Denzel Valentine battles Providence’s Kris Dunn. Both players are strong threats to record a triple-double each time they take the floor and both are key reasons why their teams are 6-0. The Friars could probably use this game a bit more than Michigan State since they enter this game unranked and could use another confidence-boosting win for a team filled with newer players. As for the Spartans, winning the Wooden Legacy would mean another great accomplishment before December even started for a team that has national title aspirations.

THIS ONE’S GOOD TOO: No. 23 Xavier vs. Dayton, 3:30 p.m. (ESPN2)

These two 6-0 teams from Ohio will meet in Orlando in the championship game of the AdvoCare Invitational. The Musketeers have six different players averaging at least 9.7 points per game this season as they’ve received great balance on the offensive end. As for Dayton, Charles Cooke as emerged as a go-to player early this season while guard Scoochie Smith has also been outstanding. This will be the first time these two schools have played since Feb. 16, 2013.


  • One of the fun teams to watch this week has been Monmouth and their amusing end-of-bench antics. On the floor, the Hawks knocked off Notre Dame and gave Dayton a scare and they’ll face USC for the second time this season to close out the AdvoCare Invitational. The Trojans won the first one 101-90, but this is a 12:30 p.m. EST tip, so that could benefit Monmouth the second time around.
  • Wisconsin visiting No. 7 Oklahoma is an intriguing Sunday matchup. The Badgers could certainly use a true road win here as they’re off to a 4-2 start. The Sooners get more of a real test after only playing Memphis as a notable opponent their first three games.
  • Also going on in the AdvoCare Invitational is No. 20 Wichita State facing Iowa and No. 17 Notre Dame battling Alabama. The Shockers are going without senior starters Fred Van Vleet and Anton Grady as they try to escape Orlando with a win. Notre Dame is hoping to close out the event strong after its surprising upset to Monmouth.
  • Action also continues in Anaheim at the Wooden Legacy as No. 11 Arizona will take on Boise State, while Boston College plays Santa Clara and UC Irvine faces Evansville. Arizona will look to get back on the right track after the close loss to Providence in the semifinals.
  • No. 6 Duke gets an afternoon tilt with Utah State at home before they face Indiana during the week. It’ll be interesting to see if Blue Devil freshman wing Brandon Ingram keeps his strong play going from earlier in the week.
  • UCLA returns home and could badly use a win against Cal State Northridge. The Bruins went a disappointing 1-2 in the Maui Invitational and need to get back on the right track before the face No. 1 Kentucky next week.


  • Brown vs. No. 25 SMU, 2:00 p.m. (ESPN3)


  • Jackson State at Marquette, 12:30 p.m.
  • Rider at Rhode Island, 1:00 p.m.
  • Savannah State at South Florida, 1:00 p.m. (ESPN3)
  • South Carolina State at Kansas State, 2:00 p.m. (ESPN3)
  • Northern Colorado at Colorado, 2:00 p.m. (PAC12)
  • UC Santa Barbara at Arizona State, 4:00 p.m. (PAC12)

POSTERIZED: Wyoming’s Josh Adams takes flight

Josh Adams
Associated Press
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Not only is Wyoming senior guard Josh Adams the lone returning starter from a team that won the Mountain West tournament last season, but he’s also one of college basketball’s best dunkers. And if anyone may have forgotten about his jumping ability, Adams put it on display Saturday during the Cowboys’ win over Montana State.

After splitting two Montana State players at the top of the key Adams attacked the basket, dunking with two hands over a late-arriving help-side defender. If you’re going to rotate over, have to do it quicker than that.

Video credit: Wyoming Athletics