juliusrandle

Julius Randle at Texas this weekend on official visit

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The Texas Longhorns haven’t had many reasons to be excited this season. Texas is under .500 at 10-12 and it gets even worse in conference, where the Longhorns sit in eighth place with a 2-7 record

Despite a season of disappointment, Rick Barnes and his club have reasons to look up in the next few weeks. Sophomore point guard Myck Kabongo will make his season debut Feb. 13 against Iowa State after serving a 23-game suspension.

The next two weeks will be big on the recruiting front for Texas, hosting prized recruit Julius Randle (Prestonwood Christian/Plano, Tex.) this weekend. Randle, the 6-foot-9 power forward, is ranked as the second-best player in the Class of 2013, according to Rivals.com. Besides Texas, Kentucky, Florida, Kansas and N.C. State are all in the running to land Randle.

While Texas has the Prestonwood Christian forward on campus this weekend, Randle will visit Kansas the following week, when the Jayhawks host Texas. In a span of eight days, Randle will watch Texas play twice.

In a down year for Texas, the Longhorns can score in the month of February and impress Randle, who is currently out with a foot injury. Texas only has one commit for the Class of 2013 — three-star point guard Isaiah Taylor (The Village School/Houston, Tex.).

This visit comes just two weeks after Randle visited N.C. State, calling it his best visit so far. He had previously visited Kentucky and Florida. His trip to Lawrence next weekend will be his final official visit.

Terrence is also the lead writer at NEHoopNews.com and can be followed on Twitter: @terrence_payne

VIDEO: Nebraska’s Shavon Shields stretchered off after scary fall

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Nebraska forward Shavon Shields was stretchered off of the floor after a scary fall as the Huskers were taking on Rutgers.

Nebraska was up by 17 in the second half when Shields bit on a pump fake and tried to block a Rutgers player’s shot. But his momentum carried him over the player’s shoulder, and he landed on what appeared to be up upper back, neck and right shoulder.

Here is the video. Be warned: it’s a nasty fall:

According to the broadcast, Shields lost consciousness on the floor and was taken to a local hospital.

Rick Pitino: ‘We should be penalized … but not this team’

Rick Pitino
(AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley)
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One of the biggest storylines of Saturday’s college basketball schedule had everything to do with a team that no longer matters in the championship picture.

Less than 24 hours after being informed that the school would be imposing a postseason ban that will leave the Cardinals out of the ACC and NCAA tournaments, No. 19 Louisville tipped off against Boston College, and they did so without leading scorer Damion Lee, who is battling a knee issue.

How would the team respond to the decision — the despicable, shameful decision — that the university’s president made?

Well, it seems.

The Cardinals jumped out to a 19-2 lead in the first eight minutes and cruised to a 79-47 win over an overmatched Boston College team in the Yum! Center.

And head coach Rick Pitino, after the quote, said exactly what everyone is thinking.

“We should be penalized, no question about it,” he said. “But not this team. But the NCAA didn’t make that decision. We made that decision.”

He’s totally right. The school sacrificed the season — and the only shot that a pair of fifth-year seniors would get to play in the NCAA tournament — to protect the school, the brand and the bottom-line moving forward. Like I said earlier, it’s despicable.

But credit the Cardinals for responding.

Because they still have something on the line. They’re just a game out of first place in the ACC, and while an ACC regular season title isn’t a shot to play in the ACC or NCAA tournament, it’s still a banner that would probably mean more to Damion Lee and Trey Lewis than any league title has meant to a Louisville player before.