Tristan Shore Christian Clearwater College

#POSTERIZED: D-II player does a 360 over a motorcycle at midnight madness

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On Thursday morning, College Basketball Talk released our preseason preview on the top dunkers to watch for in 2012-2013. It’s a content–rich list previewing the most elite Division-I slam dunk artists in the country.

But if the past two NCAA Slam Dunk Contests have taught us anything, it’s that we cannot forget about the “little guys”.

In 2011, Jacob Tucker, a 5-foot-11 point guard from Illinois College (D-III) petitioned his way into the contest via social media, and stole the show, using his 50-inch vertical to capture the championship. In 2012, James Justice, a 5-foot-10 point guard from Martin Methodist (NAIA) defeated the likes of Auburn’s Kenny Gabriel and Miami’s DeQuan Jones to keep the Dunk Contest championship belt around the waist of the smaller schools.

If the “little guys” are to complete the three-peat, they will need to find a representative with elite athleticism, leaping ability and creativity.

Meet Tristan Shore, a 6-foot-4 sophomore at Clearwater Christian College  a Division-II member of the National Christian College Atheltic Association (NCCAA), in Clearwater FL.

He does 360-dunks over motorcycles.

I think the small schools may have found their representative.

On Wednesday night at CCC’s Midnight Madness event, Shore, a Division-II NCCAA All-American this past season, announced his candidacy for the 2013 NCAA Slam Dunk Contest with an emphatic one-handed 360-jam over a dark blue Harley-Davidson motorcycle.

Not only was the dunk the main event of the Cougar’s midnight Madness, it was also done in honor of Nolan Price, a classmate of Shore who was killed in a motorcycle accident on August 24, 2012.  Shore used his 40-inch vertical to leap over the Harley with ease, despite never practicing or thinking about the dunk before hand.

Nothing says “College hoops season is almost here” quite like a 360-dunk over a motorcycle.

But a spot in the 2013 NCAA Slam Dunk Contest won’t be a cake-walk for Shore. Kwame Alexander of Cal State San Bernardino (D-II), tore down an entire basket stanchion last season, and will be a formidable foe throughout the year.

But that’s what is great about the build-up to the college hoops season. It’s not even Columbus Day yet and guys from places like Clearwater Christian College are already upping the ante and using hoops to support a good cause.

The bar has officially been set for the 2012-2013 #POSTERIZED series.

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

UNLV’s Stephen Zimmerman out with a knee injury

UNLV forward Stephen Zimmerman Jr. shoots against San Diego State during an NCAA college basketball game Saturday, Jan. 30, 2016, in Las Vegas. (L.E. Baskow/Las Vegas Sun via AP)
(L.E. Baskow/Las Vegas Sun via AP)
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The injury Stephen Zimmerman suffered on Saturday will keep the star UNLV freshman out for at least a week, a source told NBC Sports.

The injury is not thought to be serious, however. Zimmerman may be kept out for longer as a precaution, but that’s a result of the Runnin’ Rebels being in a situation where the rest of their regular season is relatively meaningless.

They’re not getting an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament regardless of how they finish out league play. With back-up center Ben Carter out with a torn ACL, it’s more important to make sure that Zimmerman, who is averaging 10.6 points and 9.1 boards this season, is totally healthy for the Mountain West tournament.

That tournament, mind you, will be played at UNLV’s Thomas & Mack Center.

So the Runnin’ Rebels, regardless of how poor they’ve played this season, will always have a chance to land an automatic bid.

Anyway, the more interesting aspect of this story is how Zimmerman injured the knee. It was a completely avoidable play that came after the whistle, but I’m not sure it was what you would call a “dirty play”. You tell me:

VIDEO: Buddy Hield is ‘all money’ on game-winning three vs. No. 24 Texas

Oklahoma guard Buddy Hield (24) takes a shot over Oklahoma State forward Chris Oliver during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game in Stillwater, Okla., Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2016. (AP Photo/Brody Schmidt)
(AP Photo/Brody Schmidt)
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With a little more than three minutes left on Monday night, No. 24 Texas held a 57-51 lead on No. 3 Oklahoma in Norman as Jordan Woodard struggled again and Buddy Hield failed to find the rhythm that he had throughout the first three months of the season.

At that point in the game, Hield was 4-for-14 from the floor with 15 points and four turnovers. He had just missed a pair of wide-open threes

“I couldn’t make a shot,” Hield said after the game. But that changed down the stretch. First, Hield finally got a three to drop. On the next possession, he got all the way to the rim and scored. On the following two possessions, he was fouled on a drive to the rim and hit four free throws. And after missing a pull-up jumper, Hield did this:

“I told coach I wanted the ball,” Hield said, “I saw Lammert coming to bite, so I pulled up.”

“It’s all money.”

Hield is already the favorite to win National Player of the Year, and this performance is only going to help his cause further. Think about it like this: Buddy was not good on Monday night, at least according to his (admittedly lofty) standards. But he still finished with 27 points and shook off a cold shooting night just in time to take over down the stretch.

Now think about this: Hield’s head coach has enough confidence in him to hand him the keys in the final minutes despite the fact that he’s struggling and on a team that has two other players that Lon Kruger trusts on game-winning possessions. Think about it. When Oklahoma beat West Virginia at the buzzer, it was Jordan Woodard that the play was drawn up for. When they beat LSU, it was Isaiah Cousins that got the rock on the final possession while Hield was used as a decoy. .

Want to talk about coaching luxuries?

Kruger has three guards that can shoot, penetrate and score, and penetrate and kick, and one of them is the National Player of the Year that doesn’t mind being used as a decoy.