stukes

La Salle lands a point guard in Philadelphia product Amar Stukes

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For the first time in 27 years, La Salle has landed a basketball product from La Salle High School as point guard Amar Stukes committed to the program earlier this week.

A 6-1, 165-pound guard, Stukes was also considering Drexel, Fairfield and Binghamton, and his commitment makes it three Division I products in the last three years for La Salle High School.

Stukes’ classmate Steve Smith is headed to Fairfield, and 2011 guard Eddie Mitchell is entering his sophomore season at Rider.

According to the Philadelphia Inquirer it was a close call for Stukes between the Explorers and fellow Philadelphia school Drexel, with the Dragons’ recent success sticking out in his mind.

But the allure of the Big 5, a storied city rivalry that La Salle is a part of (Penn, Temple, Saint Joseph’s and Villanova being the others), ultimately won over the La Salle High product.

For Stukes, the chance to play at home in front of family and friends was simply the icing on the cake. Taking part in a tradition as rich as the Big 5 was the only selling point Stukes needed.

“I’m glad that I will be getting a chance to play so close to home in front of my family, but really, I am really excited to play for Coach G [La Salle head coach John Giannini] in the Big 5,” Stukes said in a telephone interview Wednesday. “Some of the best basketball players, not just to come out of this city but to play in the NBA, played for a Big 5 school. To me, that was really what got me.”

Ramon Galloway is a senior this season but point guard Tyreek Duren will be a senior when Stukes is a freshman, meaning that he’ll be able to spend that year learning from one of the best point guards in the Atlantic 10.

Stukes also noted the need for him to add some muscle to his slender build this season to better prepare himself for college basketball.

Photo credit: Yong Kim/Philadelphia Inquirer

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

Iowa State’s starting center Jameel McKay remains suspended

Iowa State forward Jameel McKay celebrates on the court at the end of an NCAA college basketball game against Oklahoma, Monday, Jan. 18, 2016, in Ames, Iowa. Iowa State won 82-77. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
(AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
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Steve Prohm announced on Monday that starting center Jameel McKay will not be in the lineup on Wednesday when the Cyclones take on Texas Tech.

“He’ll practice today because I want him in practice,” Prohm said, “but game-wise, he’s suspended.”

McKay did not make the trip to Stillwater with the team on Saturday, where Iowa State beat Oklahoma State, 64-59. Prohm has not gotten into specifics regarding the cause of McKay’s suspension, but it’s reportedly an issue with the way he has been practicing. McKay is dealing with a nagging knee injury, which may play a role in the situation as well.

“My hope is he’ll be with us on Saturday,” Prohm said.

AP POLL: Villanova climbs to No. 1 in the country.

Jay Wright
(AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
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Like the Coaches Poll, Villanova found themselves No. 1 in the AP Poll during the regular season for the first time in the history of the program.

And like the Coaches Poll, there isn’t much in the way of a consensus when it comes to who is the No. 1 team, as there are six teams that received No. 1 votes in the poll this week.

[NEW PODCAST]

[LATEST BRACKETOLOGY]

The biggest shock to me?

The No. 1 team in the NBC Sports Top 25, Iowa, received just 11 first place votes and is ranked fourth in the AP Poll.

They were ranked fifth in the Coaches Poll.

Can we get Fran McCaffery the love they deserve?

Here is the rest of the AP Poll:

1. Villanova (20-3, 32 first-place votes)
2. Maryland (21-3, 13)
3. Oklahoma (19-3, 7)
4. Iowa (19-4, 11)
5. Xavier (21-2)
6. Kansas (19-4, 1)
7. Virginia (19-4, 1)
8. Michigan State (20-4)
9. North Carolina (19-4)
10. West Virginia (19-4)
11. Oregon (18-4)
12. Miami (FL) (18-4)
13. Louisville (19-4)
14. Iowa State (17-6)
15. Texas A&M (18-5)
16. SMU (20-2)
17. Arizona (19-5)
18. Purdue (19-5)
19. Dayton (19-3)
20. Providence (18-6)
21. Baylor (17-6)
22. Kentucky (17-6)
23. USC (18-5)
24. Texas (16-7)
25. Wichita State (17-6)

DROPPED OUT: No. 22 Indiana, No. 25 South Carolina
NEW ADDITIONS: No. 23 USC, No. 24 Texas