Appalachian State

Appalachian State, Georgia Southern reportedly to join Sun Belt

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As the landscape of college sports continues to change because of conference realignment, we have news of more movement Tuesday.

According to the Associated Press, Appalachian State and Georgia Southern will leave the Southern Conference and join the Sun Belt in every sport except for football  beginning at the start of the 2014 season. The football program of each respective school will begin the transition from FCS to FBS and join the Sun Belt in 2015.

The two additions means 12 basketball schools will compete in the 2014-15 Sun Belt season, with Appalachian State and Georgia Southern joining Arkansas State, Georgia State, Louisiana-Lafayette, Louisiana-Monroe, South Alabama, Texas State, Troy, Western Kentucky, Arkansas-Little Rock and Texas-Arlington.

The move, as much of conference realignment has been, is motivated by the desire of both schools to become FBS football programs. The teams have won a combined nine FCS championships.

As for the basketball implications, Appalachian State finished last season with an overall record of 15-16, including 10-8 in the SoCon. The Mountaineeers lost to eventual champion Davidson in the semifinals of the conference tournament.

Georgia Southern finished 14-19 this season and 7-11 in the SoCon. It, too, lost to Davidson in the conference tournament, falling to coach Bob McKillop’s team in the quarterfinal round.

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

Henry Ellenson wins Marquette Madness dunk contest

Steve Wojciechowski
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Marquette freshman forward Henry Ellenson won the Marquette Madness slam dunk contest on Friday night with a between the legs dunk.

The 6-foot-10 Ellenson, the top recruit in Steve Wojciechowski’s freshmen class, defeated sophomore Sandy Cohen, fellow freshman Sacar Anim and Wally Ellenson, his older brother.

Ellenson joins the Golden Eagles as the No. 11 overall recruit in the Class of 2015.

Bill Self signs $10,000 check for KU student


Late Night in the Phog is typically a night to remember for Kansas fans. For Kansas student Jerrod Martin Castro, Friday night’s event is one he won’t forget.

Castro, a sophomore, was selected as a contestant for a $10,000 giveaway. The only thing standing in the way of a big payday was a half-court shot. Brennan Bechard, the Kansas director of basketball operations, attempted the long-distance shot and hit nothing but net.

Kansas head coach Bill Self signed a $10,000 check on the spot.