ACC Basketball Tournament - Georgia Tech v Miami

Could Georgia Tech commit Solomon Poole enroll in December? Possibly.

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In Brian Gregory’s first season at Georgia Tech the Yellow Jackets struggled, as disciplinary issues and a lack of depth resulted in an 11-20 (4-12 ACC) campaign.

But Gregory picked up a very important victory on the recruiting trail as 2013 point guard Solomon Poole decided to join his older brother Stacey Jr. (a transfer from Kentucky) at Georgia Tech.

And according to Jeff Borzello of the time for Solomon to set foot on the Georgia Tech campus could be sooner rather than later, and by “sooner” that means December.

The plan for Poole is to finish up his high school course work in December and then enroll at Georgia Tech after the first semester, sources told

“He is way ahead in school so that is the plan,” one source said. “But he has a lot of work to do to graduate in December.”

“It’s 50-50 right now,” a source said. “The next three weeks we will have a much better idea.”

In the 6-1 Poole the Yellow Jackets are adding a high-level point guard whenever he enrolls in classes, but to add a player of his caliber at the semester break would provide a much-needed boost.

Georgia Tech does return senior Mfon Udofia, who averaged 9.9 points and a team-best 2.8 assists per game as a junior. But Udofia also averaged 2.7 turnovers per contest, a number that has to decrease with or without Solomon Poole enrolling early.

Grad student Pierre Jordan, who averaged 11.5 minutes per game last season, took good care of the basketball during his limited time on the floor and may factor into the rotation thanks in part to freshman Corey Heyward’s torn ACL.

Georgia Tech has bodies at the off-guard position with two transfers (Poole Jr. and former Arkansas State guard Brandon Reed) joining freshman Chris Bolden but none of the three have suited up for the Yellow Jackets.

Adding Poole, who is an explosive player with the basketball in his hands, could both alleviate some of the pressure on Udofia to make things happen while also giving the Yellow Jackets a dimension they lacked in 2011-12.

The Yellow Jackets landed a solid freshman class (Bolden, Heyward, wing Marcus Georges-Hunt and power forward Robert Carter), but being able to account for the loss of Heyward by adding Poole would make that group even better.

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

No. 10 Gonzaga outlasts No. 18 UConn despite late offensive struggles

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No. 10 Gonzaga survived a furious rally from No. 18 UConn to win the third place game in the Battle 4 Atlantis, 73-70.

The Zags were up by as much as 21 points early in the second half, leading 48-27, but UConn slowly chipped away at the lead. Kyle Wiltjer led four players in double-figures with 17 points while Eric McClellan added 15 points, making a number of key plays in the second half when it looked like the Zags were in danger of giving away the lead.

As good as Gonzaga looked in the first 22 minutes of this game — and they looked really, really good — the second half exposed the concerns that many had with this group entering the season. Kevin Pangos and Gary Bell Jr., who both shot around 40 percent from beyond the arc and started for four years, graduated, meaning that Gonzaga’s point guard situation is, more or less, Josh Perkins.

Perkins was terrific in the second half of a loss to Texas A&M on Thursday. He played 17 foul-plagued minutes against UConn. When UConn’s defense ratcheted up during the second half, Gonzaga struggled finding a way to consistently get good shots on the offensive end. Part of that was due to ineffective point guard play and part of it was a result of not really having anyone on the offensive end that can create a look on their own. As skilled as Wiltjer is, his impact can be limited when pick-and-pop actions aren’t working and he’s getting doubled in the post.

Perkins is talented, but this is essentially his first season of college basketball; he was a medical redshirt last season after breaking his jaw last November. There are going to be ups-and-downs, and that’s problematic on a team where he is essentially the only point guard on the roster.

The good news?

Gonzaga beat a good UConn team on a day when their best players struggled in crunch-time. It was McClellan and Kyle Dranginis that made the big plays down the stretch, not the big names on the Gonzaga roster.

Wichita State’s Anton Grady ‘awake, alert’ after getting stretchered off court

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Wichita State big man Anton Grady was stretchered off of the floor in the second half of a loss to Alabama after a nasty collision with Dazon Ingram.

The video can be seen above. There was nothing malicious about the way that Grady was injured. When he turned to run up the floor after missing a shot in the lane, he went face first into Ingram’s shoulder. He neck bent in an awkward directions and, after stumbling a few steps, he laid motionless on the floor.

It took 10 minutes for the training staff to strap Grady to a backboard and wheel him out of the arena.

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A Wichita State spokesman told that Grady was taken to a local trauma center for evaluation and that he is “awake, alert and is answering questions appropriately”.

We will have more updates as they come available.

From a basketball perspective, the No. 20 Shockers lost their second game in a row and are now 2-3 on the season.

While for some the Shockers’ résumé is up for questioning following losses to USC and Alabama, two teams projected to finish in the bottom half of their respective leagues, the team’s health is the biggest concern.

Fred VanVleet has been dealing with a hamstring issue since the season began, and an ankle injury limited him in a loss at Tulsa earlier this month. He won’t play again until at least Dec. 5th. and who knows when he’ll be back to full strength. The same can be said for back up point guard and freshman Landry Shamet, who underwent surgery to address a stress fracture in the fifth metatarsal in his left foot. Their injuries have led to even more being asked of senior guard Ron Baker, and the loss of Grady for any significant amount of time certainly isn’t going to help matters..

These early-season losses won’t help Wichita State when it comes to the NCAA tournament, but it’s important to make note of the circumstances surrounding those defeats. To be shorthanded, with one of the absent players ranking among the nation’s best point guards, has an impact that has to be accounted for when evaluating Wichita State. The Shockers will add Conner Frankamp in mid-December, which will help them on the perimeter.

But with their rotation currently being in flux, it’s tough to make any definitive statements on what Wichita State will have to do in order to make another trip to the NCAA tournament. At this point Gregg Marshall and his staff will look for other contributors, one of whom being Markis McDuffie (14 points, seven rebounds vs. Alabama), to emerge and show themselves capable of picking up the slack.