The Morning Mix

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Hope you’re ready for a fully loaded edition of The Morning Mix. So forget about the bizzaro ending to Monday Night Football and hold all your calls for the next 45 minutes. It will be worth it.

Time to hit the links:

– ESPN released their Midnight Madness coverage information. The World Wide Leader will be heading to Baylor, Florida State, Georgetown, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Missouri, Murray State, North Carolina, North Carolina State, Pittsburgh,  and Syracuse

Will an increase in academic standards cause a decrease in on-court play? Wait, are you insinuating that the best college basketball players are necessarily smart enough to get into Division-1 universities? I’m shocked.

– Washington State senior guard Reggie Moore has been dismissed from the program for a violation of team rules. Moore was suspended for a portion of last seaon due to an arrest on two marijuana charges. As Jeff Eisenberg explain, Washington State is not going to be very good next season

– Southern Illinois guard Diamond Taylor has been suspended indefinitely after being charged with driving under the influence over the weekend

– Sam Cassell Jr. was denied eligibility at Maryland earlier in the month, so the Notre Dame Prep (Mass.) star will attend Chipola Community College, a school that hast hosted a bevy of Division-I players

– Long time college coach Jim Platt has joined the staff at Saint Louis and will aide interm head coach Jim Crews. Remember, Crews was named the interim coach not too long ago after Rick Majerus had to step down do to his frequent battles with serious health issues

– Nebraska assistant coach Ronald Coleman was officially named assistant coach at Bradley yesterday

– A great-read on Jim Calhoun: The most misunderstood man in the country

– Tom Izzo is preaching leadership to his team in advance of the 2012-2013 season. Speaking of Izzo, it seems that the Spartan big-man Derrick Nix is back in the good graces of the head coach after he was arrested over the summer

– God Bless Mick Cronin. We might not agree with his statement, but god bless him for saying it

Andy Katz is rolling with Iowa this year, thinks they can be the sleeper pick out of the Big-Ten

– A nice opinionated take from David Whitley on the double standards being set  by the NCAA

– Matt Norlander is really buying NC-State over Duke and UNC

– It’s not too often that you see people writing about the Seattle Redhawks. So take this opportunity to study up on the new WCC member

– VCU gave their home court a face lift. Nothing to out of the ordinary, but a good job nonetheless

The X-factors on three title contenders

– Top-10 recruit Noah Vonleh is reclassifying from 2014 to 2013. Indiana is among the favorites for his services

– ESPN asks Florida’s Kenny Boyton five questions. Boynton thinks Tennessee, not Kentucky, will be the toughest opponents in the SEC

– Tennessee forward Jarnell stoke is a big boy. But the 6-foot-8 sophomore may not be the biggest member of his family. Have a look at his younger brother. This will end up being the funniest picture you see all week

Remember, if you find an article that is worthy of being in The Morning Mix, be sure to use the #ReadoftheDay hashtag on Twitter. 

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

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