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The Morning Mix

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What a game. What a season.

The 2012-2013 college basketball season is officially in the books and we were sent off into the sunset with arguably the best game of the season. Last night’s National Championship game between Louisville and Michigan was better than anything we could have asked for.

Let’s hit the links.

Read of the Day:
A fascinating-read from Shane Ryan on a crew of Louisville stat-keepers that changed the way numbers were crunched. Plus “dead-ball rebounds”. What the heck is that? (Grantland)

Observations & Insight:
– Montrezl Harrell and Tim Hardaway Jr. threw down two of the best dunks of the entire tournament. (College Basketball Talk)

– College basketball officiating has been atrocious as of late. If you agree with this statement, I highly recommend you click the following link. (Deadspin)

– Despite not having a team win the National Championship, this season was a resounding success for the Big Ten Conference. (Big Ten Network)

– Everybody remembers the winners, but we shouldn’t forget about what Spike Albrecht conjured up in the first half last night. (Eye on College Basketball)

– Jon Beilein’s late-game coaching gaffe didn’t cost his team the National Championship, but it did make matters difficult down the stretch. (USA Today)

– I know it’s just Tuesday, but Rick Pitino may have just capped off the best week ever. (Dallas Star-Telegram)

– Was Trey Burke’s block/foul on Peyton Siva the turning point in the National Championship game? (The Dagger)

– An inside the numbers look at Louisville’s National Championship victory over Michigan. (ESPN)

– Louisville had to fend off nearly perfect halves from both Wichita State and Michigan. But the Cardinals never panicked and never wavered. (Courier-Journal)

– Recruiting guru Reggie Rankin provides an outlook for the Michigan Wolverines in 2013-2014. (ESPN Insider)

– The early odds for the 2014 National Championship. Kentucky is the strong favorite. No sign of Wichita State or Florida Gulf Coast. (The Gazette)

Hoops Housekeeping:
– Indiana associate head coach Tim Buckley has shown interested in the opening at Florida Gulf Coast. (The Hoosier Scoop)

– Maryland guard Pe’Shon Howard has decided to transfer after an injury-plagued career in College Park. (D1sCourse.com)

– Tim Pernetti is no longer the Athletic Director at Rutgers, but he will still get $1.2-million in salary and an iPad. (Sports Illustrated)

– Kansas State sophomore guard Adrian Diaz is set to transfer out of “The Little Apple”. (Kansas City Star)

– UCLA freshman forward Anthony Parker has opted against transferring and will stay in Westwood. (Larry Brown Sports)

Odds & Ends:
– Fans of the program are aware that @CBTonNBC was first on the scene with the coining of “Dunk City”. Finally we get the recognition we deserve. (The Post Game)

– Bill Clinton wrote an awesome letter to Chris Webber following C-Web’s legendary National Championship game gaffe against North Carolina. (Deadspin)

– It looks like Kobe Bryant did not watch the National Championship game. (Dime Magazine)

– Some D-list video vixen is trying to expose Peyton Siva as a fraud. Good grief. (Black Sports Online)

– Some of the best photos from the National Championship Game. (Sports Illustrated)

– And from the “You Can’t Make This Stuff Up” files: Manti Te’O’s fake-girlfriend won the entire ESPN bracket challenge. (USA Today)

Picture of the Day:
The National Player of the Year has nothing to be ashamed of. Helluva game. Helluva season.

source:

.GIF of the Day:
Rick Pitino was not ready for the celebratory fireworks.

.GIF of the Day:
Peyton Siva’s dad is the best.

Do you like the new Morning Mix? Hate it? Have a suggestion or want something featured? Troy Machir will take all your praise, insults and inquiries via Twitter (@TroyMachir

Kawhi Leonard to be inducted into SDSU Hall of Fame

Kawhi Leonard (Getty Images)
Kawhi Leonard (Getty Images)
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Kawhi Leonard is, and probably always will be, the greatest player to ever come through the San Diego State ranks.

And this week, the Aztecs announced that they will be honoring the all-NBA wing due to his accomplishments in Viejas Arena: Leonard will be enshrined in the SDSU Hall of Fame this October.

Leonard is a terrific story, one that most people probably already know. A former Mr. Basketball in California, Leonard was somewhat under-recruited, winding up at SDSU where he proceeded to post monster numbers for an Aztec team that climbed into the top five in the country his sophomore season. He went pro after just two years with the program, getting picked 15th by the Spurs due to concerns about his ability to adjust to the perimeter full-time.

And we all know how that worked out.

VIDEO: South Dakota walk-on Logan Power get surprised with a scholarship

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Logan Power, a 6-foot-4 redshirt sophomore from Nebraska, landed a scholarship at the end of South Dakota’s trip to Spain.

You can see the video of it above. Power played in 14 games last season, averaging 2.5 points as he played a real role for the Coyotes down the stretch of the season.

Sometimes moments like this can feel like artificial, like a production designed to boost a coach’s Q rating as much as it is to award the player that scholarship. This doesn’t feel like that at all, as head coach Craig Smith barely can even offer a speech about the player as he fights to hold back tears.

It’s a touching moment.

Well done, USD.

Why did Trevon Duval list Seton Hall, St. John’s and not Duke, Kentucky?

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Trevon Duval is the reason that mixtapes were created.

A top five player and the top point guard in the Class of 2017, Duval is 6-foot-3 and super-athletic, boasting the kind of handle that would make Uncle Drew blush. It’s not possible to do any kind of scouting off of a mixtape; judging what a player can and can’t do based off of a highlight package doesn’t happen.

But given what Duval is capable of doing, it makes him the perfect player to have game film cut and edited so that his highlights fit seamlessly within the beat of an instrumental.

That’s why this mixtape is so good.

But unlike a lot of mixtape phenoms, Duval’s game goes beyond the tricks that look good in slow motion.

His ranking isn’t a fluke. He’s far and away the best point guard in 2017, but you wouldn’t know that based on his offer list.

On Monday, “trimmed” his list to ten schools: He’s not following a typical path for the top point guard in the class. Much has been written in the last six months about how Duke and Kentucky, the two preeminent programs on the recruiting trail, have been targeting second tier point guards in the Class of 2017, the likes of Trae Young and Quade Green and Tremont Waters.

Young and Green and Waters are all terrific players, top 30 recruits with a shot at becoming McDonalds All-Americans, but Duval is in a tier all by himself. He’s the only surefire one-and-done point guard in the class.

And he listed Seton Hall and St. John’s in his final ten.

He didn’t list Duke and Kentucky.

What do Seton Hall, St. John’s and Trevon Duval all have in common?

Under Armour.

Duval plays for We-R-1 on the travel circuit, a program that is sponsored by UA. He played his junior season at API, a high school program in Texas that was sponsored by Under Armour. Emmanuel Mudiay and Terrence Ferguson, the last two elite prospects to forego college to head directly to the professional ranks overseas, both came from API and reportedly signed sponsorship deals with UA. If UA has a reputation at the grassroots level, it’s that they’re as loyal as any of the three major shoe companies. They do everything they can to keep it all in the family.

The best example of this?

Diamond Stone, a product of the Under Armour Association circuit and Wisconsin native that bucked in-state powers Wisconsin and Marquette to play for Maryland, the program that is to UA and Oregon is to Nike.

It doesn’t always work that way — see: Josh Jackson — and of the final 10 schools on Duval’s list, only four are programs sponsored by Under Armour.

But it’s not an accident that Seton Hall and St. John’s made the cut, and it’s not a coincidence that UCLA — who just this summer signed a massive sponsorship deal with the apparel company — is now considered to be the favorite to land Duval.

The idea that shoe companies control where elite prospects go to school is a bit overblown in this day and age. If it wasn’t, Kansas, an adidas school, wouldn’t have landed Andrew Wiggins or Josh Jackson, two of the last four No. 1 players in the country, neither of whom played with an adidas sponsored team before college.

But it does happen.

And when it does, it’s not all that hard to identify.

Trevon Duval (Kelly Kline/Under Armour)
Trevon Duval (Kelly Kline/Under Armour)

Report: CBE Hall of Fame Classic headliners set

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The headliners for the 2017 CBE Hall of Fame Classic have been set.

UCLA, Baylor, Wisconsin and Creighton will highlight the bill for the annual event in Kansas City, according to a report from CBS Sports.

The CBE Hall of Fame Classic historically has included on-campus games and a flagship four-team championship round at the Sprint Center. This year’s headliners include Kansas, Georgia, George Washington and UAB.

Certainly securing four high-majors is a significant get for the event, which will also likely coincide with the induction of the 2017 class of the Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame. The 2016 class is highlighted by Mark Aguirre, Doug Collins, Dominique Wilson, Jamal Wilkes and Mike Montgomery.

Coach Cal softball game raises $300K for La. flood relief

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John Calipari is known for his ability to amass talent. Over the weekend, that quality helped raise $300,000 for Louisiana flood relief.

The Coach Cal Celebrity Softball Classic brought Kentucky stars like Keith Bogans, Andrew Harrison and Karl-Anthony Towns and the likes of former UK quarterback Tim Couch and NFL Hall of Famer Chris Carter to Lexington to help aid Louisiana in conjunction with the Red Cross after the area suffered major flooding earlier this month.

“I didn’t want to really do a softball game,” Calipari said according to his website, “but then we decided to do it and then Louisiana happens and now you have a cause. … It’s kind of neat. You have a cause, you have a why.”

Towns’ team was the 18-12 victor over Team Calipari on the day.

“This is amazing,” Towns said on CoachCal.com. “This is something that we get a chance to rarely do. We get to help the community out but at the same time have fun. There’s nothing better than doing something that we would do for free but for charity. This is something we’re going to have a lot of fun doing today.”

The softball game was played the same weekend as the John Calipari Basketball Fantasy Experience which generated $1 million that will be shared with 14 charities.