The Morning Mix

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– The MLB All-Star Game is on Tuesday, and I bet you had no idea just how many former All-Stars were also former college basketball players

– Kansas head coach Bill Self is an avid baseball fan. He enjoys advanced statistics, quotes classic baseball movies, and even invited Tommy Lasorda to the Phogg. With the All-Star Game taking place in Kansas City this week, you just knew Self would be part of the festivities. Self was booed heavily by the Missouri fans in attendance, but the Kansas head coach silenced them by hitting a home run

– Indiana State isn’t exactly known for their football program. But Sycamore’s center Myles Walker, who was also a high touted football recruit, will be trading in the high-tops for shoulder pads

– Consider Vermont the “Kentucky of #AllNameTeams”. The Catamounts saw Four McGlynn transfer to Towson, yet they were able to reload with the addition of Trey Blue. He will join the likes of Clancy Rugg and Sandro Carissimo

– So….apparently, somebody purchased the trademark rights to “Fear the Brow” before Anthony Davis could. The owner is willing to give it to the No.1-overall pick, but for a price. (I told you all he should have gone with “Brow Down” instead)

– Anthony Davis was left off the US olympic roster, but are we getting closer to seeing college players represent the country again?

– Kevin Pelton does a great job rating Team USA’s roster for the upcoming Olympics in London

– A couple of good-reads about potential breakout stars in 2012-2013: Arkansas’ B.J. Young, Kentucky’s Ryan Harrow, Marquette’s Vander Blue, Ohio State’s LaQuinton Ross, Pittsburgh’s Lamar Patterson, , South Florida’s Victor Rudd Jr., Syracuse’s C.J. Fair, and Washington’s C.J. Wilcox

– Jabari Parker was once thought to be considered unquestionably the top recruit in the class of 2013. But with a recent injury and the rise of Julius Randle, is Parker’s top spot up for grabs?

– The NCAA changed their rules in order to allow more summer practice time, and many coaches are starting to capitalize on the extra hours

– Could Penn’s Zac Rosen become the next Jeremy Lin? (All I got is “Rosen-sational”. If you can do better, drop it in the comments section below)

– A nice, quick read about the height of Kentucky’s ceiling in 2012-2013, and what the ‘Cats have to do to break through

– A shirtless Ric Pitino chillin’ on a raft, throwin’ up “The L”. In case you’re in to that sort of thing

– Man running for Mayor of Portland punches guy in the balls during pick-up game 

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

Michigan State’s Tum Tum Nairn battling foot injury

Lourawls Nairn Jr.
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Michigan State has climbed on the back of star senior wing Denzel Valentine early in the season but they’ll undoubtedly need more help as the season goes on if they want to sustain their current top-5 ranking. One of the keys to the Spartans could be the on-going health of sophomore point guard Lourawls ‘Tum Tum’ Nairn, who is battling a foot injury.

According to a report from Kyle Austin of, Nairn has been putting on a protective boot the last few months to help battle plantar fasciitis as the guard has been playing in practices and hasn’t had his minutes reduced in games.

The injury looked like it was hurting Nairn’s early-season play, but he’s been very good in two games at the Wooden Legacy in California this week, so it could be that he’s getting more used to playing through the pain of the injury.

If Nairn is healthy and capable of contributing, he’s a huge boost to Michigan State because he’s one of the fastest players in college basketball and an additional ball handler on the floor. Through six games so far this season, Nairn is averaging 5.3 points and 4.7 assists per game as he’s been one of the team’s best distributors.

Plantar fasciitis can be a tough injury to fight through, so we’ll have to see if this affects Nairn as the season goes along.

PREGAME SHOOTAROUND: A few tournaments are still going on

Justin Jenifer, Charles Jackson
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GAME OF THE DAY: George Washington vs. No. 24 Cincinnati, 1:30 p.m.

Two 6-0 teams clash at the Barclays Center in what could be an important game for NCAA tournament resumes of both teams. The Bearcats picked up their most legitimate win over Nebraska, but the Colonials pose as a more real threat after they beat Virginia at home earlier this season. Cincinnati hasn’t shot the ball well in recent wins, but they’re beating up opponents on the glass and the defense has been solid. George Washington is coming off of a win over Tennessee in which they held off the Volunteers in the second half. The Colonials have lost 20 of their last 23 against ranked opponents, but another win over a top team would look great for them going forward.

THIS ONE’S GOOD TOO: No. 4 Iowa State vs. Illinois, 6:00 p.m. (CBSSN)

This game is apart of the Emerald Coast Classic in Niceville, Florida as the Illini could desperately use a win after a 3-3 start. Illinois head coach John Groce and his team are feeling the pressure for a big win on a neutral site after falling to North Florida, Providence and Chattanooga earlier in the season. The No. 4 Cyclones easily dispatched Virginia Tech earlier in the event and have found a nice balance on offense with the emergence of senior big man Jameel McKay inside.


  • N0. 2 Maryland has struggled to put away teams early at times this season and they’ll try to change that behavior when they host Cleveland State.
  • Staying in the Big Ten, No. 16 Purdue hosts Lehigh. With a game at Pitt and against New Mexico looming, could this be a trap game for the Boilers?
  • Nebraska and Tennessee take the floor in consolation action at the Barclays Center. The Huskers need someone besides Shavon Shields and Andrew White to step up in the scoring column while Tennessee is getting huge numbers from senior guard Kevin Punter.
  • Two 4-0 teams will meet in Brooklyn as Louisville takes on Saint Louis (7:00 p.m., ESPN3). Neither team has faced a significant test this season and this is the Cardinals’ first game away from home.
  • An intriguing night game to keep an eye on is Belmont traveling to BYU (8:00 p.m.). The Bruins are as well-coached as any team in the country and forward Evan Bradds has been playing great ball to start the season. The Cougars don’t have a high scorer like they did in the past, but Kyle Collinsworth is a triple-double threat every time he steps on the floor and BYU has a lot of weapons around him.
  • UAB and Virginia Tech battle in one of the more intriguing consolation games of the Emerald Coast Classic. Both teams are coming off of disappointing losses but have a shot to make things better on the trip with a solid win on Saturday.


  • Bryant at Georgetown, 11:00 a.m. (FS2)
  • Bucknell at Penn State , 12:00 p.m.
  • Tennessee-Martin vs. Mississippi State, 12:00 p.m. (SEC Network)
  • Ole Miss at Bradley, 1:00 p.m. (ESPN3)
  • Old Dominion at VCU, 3:00 p.m.
  • Hawaii at Texas Tech, 3:00 p.m.
  • Kent State at Pitt, 3:00 p.m. (ESPN3)
  • SIU-Edwardsville at Butler, 4:00 p.m.
  • Georgia at Seton Hall, 6:30 p.m.
  • Western Illinois at Creigton, 7:00 p.m.
  • Colorado State vs UTEP, 7:30 p.m.