alan Major

Charlotte beats Northeastern to win Great Alaska Shootout title


How late did you stay up last night? Was it late enough to catch a 12:30 a.m. ET tip-off?

If you didn’t, we don’t blame you, but you missed Charlotte’s 67-59 victory over Northeastern to win the Great Alaska Shootout title in Anchorage.

“Just an honor. For this tournament being 35 years old,” Charlotte coach Alan Major said on winning the championship. “I’m really happy for JT Thompson. Last time he was here, he lost to Butler in OT. He said before the game, ‘How many chances in life do you get to go back and finish something?’ So I’m happy for him, but it’s just an honor to have a banner in here among some pretty elite company.”

The Great Alaska Shootout might not be the tournament that it used to be, eclipsed by the Maui Invitational and, more recently, what looks to be a perennially strong field in Atlantis, but Charlotte defeated Texas State, Oral Roberts, and Northeastern to win the title.

Charlotte had three stand-outs in the tournament, with Pierria Henry being named tournament MVP and Chris Braswell and Terrence Williams named to the All-Tournament team.

The 49ers improve to 6-0 on the season and return home to take on East Carolina on Dec. 1.

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_

Louisville’s Rick Pitino on allegations: ‘We will get through this’

Rick Pitino
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) Louisville coach Rick Pitino remains defiant that his program will survive the allegations in a book by an escort alleging that former Cardinals staffer Andre McGee hired her and other dancers to strip and have sex with recruits and players.

Pitino said Tuesday that the Cardinals “will get through this the right way.”

The coach told a packed room at a tipoff luncheon that he understands the motivation behind Katina Powell’s book “Breaking Cardinal Rules: Basketball and the Escort Queen,” but questions the need for the alleged activities given the talent his program has produced.

Pitino added, “We will find out the truth, whatever it may be, and those responsible will pay the price.”

Georgia Tech lands Class of 2016 guard

Brian Gregory
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Georgia Tech picked up its third Class of 2016 commitment on Tuesday as the Yellow Jackets landed a pledged from three-star guard Josh Okogie.

The 6-foot-4 guard is considered the No. 143 overall prospect in the national Class of 2016 rankings and Okogie played with a very talented Team CP3 in the Nike EYBL. In 22 games this spring and summer, Okogie averaged 10.6 points, 4.5 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.6 steals per game while shooting 45 percent from the field.

Okogie joins three-star wing Christian Matthews and four-star big man Romello White in head coach Brian Gregory’s Class of 2016 at Georgia Tech. The group is definitely a solid influx of talent with some coming from successful grassroots programs.