Akron guard Alex Abreu pleads not guilty to drug charges, Zips fall to Kent State

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Akron won 19 straight up until Mar. 2. The Zips dropped two of their last three games to close out the regular season.

Friday night, Akron fell 68-64 to Kent State, the first game since Akron point guard Alex Abreu was suspended after being arrested on drug charges Thursday. Abreu was arrested on charges of marijuana trafficking.

The junior point guard was averaging 10.3 points and six assists per game for the MAC leading Zips. Without the 6-foot floor general running the show, Akron had to rely on freshman Carmelo Betancourt who finished with five points, four assists, and a pair of steals.

Abreu was shooting just under 40 percent from three, though, without him on the floor, the Zips shot 22 percent (6-for-27) from behind the arc.

Earlier in the day, Abreu plead not guilty to those charges at Akron Municipal Court, according to the Associated Press. Abreu posted $5,000 bail and was released from Summit County Jail. He gave no comments to reporters waiting for him outside.

Akron is now 24-6 (14-2 MAC) and if the loss to Kent State is any indication of how important Abreu is to the Zips, it appears their special season might be slipping away on the verge of the NCAA tournament.

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

VIDEO: Zion Williamson’s coach is holding a sleeping baby

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LaMelo Ball vs. Zion Williamson was insane, but it wasn’t quite crazy enough to wake up the sleeping toddler that Williamson’s coach is holding in his arms:

This is peak AAU basketball.

It will never be more AAU than that.

PHOTOS: Zion Williamson, LaMelo Ball showdown was, of course, insane

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In a showcase game in the adidas Uprising event in Las Vegas on Wednesday night, LaMelo Ball — the youngest member of the Big Baller Brand — faced off with Zion Williamson, who is a force on youtube and a highlight machine.

The crowd was insane for the game:

According to a report from ESPN, there were even concerns about whether or not the game would actually be allowed to be played; the police and fire marshall considered shutting the event down.

Williamson, of course, put on a show in warmups:

At the time of this posting, there were more than 60,000 people watching a livestream of the game on BallIsLife’s facebook page:

(UPDATE: It’s now over 70,000)

Puerto Rico Tip Off bracket revealed

AP Photo/Sean Rayford
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The bracket of the 2017 Puerto Rico Tip off was revealed Wednesday, setting up a showdown between a 2016 Final Four participant and the 2016 Big 12 tournament champion.

South Carolina and Iowa State headline the event, which will be played Nov. 16-19, in Fajardo, Puerto Rico.

The Gamecocks are on the top half of the bracket, opening against Illinois State while the Cyclones are on the bottom half, squaring off against Appalachian State.

Boise State vs. UTEP is the other top-half quarterfinal while Tulsa vs. Western Michigan is the other.

The championship game of the Puerto Rico Tip Off on Sunday, Nov. 19.

VIDEO: Michigan State’s Miles Bridges is dunking again

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Just what you wanted to see, a video of former Michigan State star Denzel Valentine throwing an alley-oop off the glass to current Michigan State star Miles Bridges in a Pro-Am in Michigan:

VIDEO: Kentucky’s entry into the #DriveByDunkChallenge

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A day after Grayson Allen threw an alley-oop to Trevon Duval for Duke’s entry into the #DriveByDunkChallenge, Kentucky’s team of freshmen decided to do one of their own:

https://twitter.com/i/web/status/889947577734574085

That would be, in order, Johnny David, Jarrod Vanderbilt, Nick Richards, PJ Washington and Kevin Knox abusing some poor sap’s rim somewhere in Lexington.

But was that better than John Calipari’s attempt?