NBA/Philadelphia 76ers

Report: 76ers assistant Brian James to join Chris Collins at Northwestern

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First-year Northwestern head coach Chris Collins will reportedly add a familiar face to his coaching staff, hiring current Philadelphia 76ers assistant Brian James according to Bob Ford of the Philadelphia Inquirer.

While James isn’t a familiar face to Northwestern he is to Collins, as he was Collins’ high school coach at Glenbrook North (Ill.) in the Chicago suburbs.

James has spent the last three seasons on Doug Collins’ staff in Philadelphia and has 13 years of coaching experience at the NBA level.

James will be the second hire that Chris Collins has made since taking over at Northwestern. Collins made the decision just over a week ago to retain Northwestern alumnus Tavaras Hardy, who was a member of Bill Carmody’s staff for the last seven seasons.

A formal announcement of James joining the staff at Northwestern may not come until later in the week, as the 76ers complete their season Wednesday night.

Currently Northwestern is due to return key contributors such as guards Tre Demps and Dave Sobolewski and forward Kale Abrahamson, and veteran guard JerShon Cobb (academics) is expected to return as well after missing all of last season.

The biggest question is the status of senior wing Drew Crawford, who played just nine games (the exhibition against Chicago doesn’t count in the calculation) before being sitting out the remainder of the season with a shoulder injury.

Playing in nine of Northwestern’s 32 games would work out to a percentage of 28.1%, falling just below the NCAA’s 30% threshold for a medical redshirt (a player cannot receive a waiver if they play in more than 30% of their team’s games).

If both Crawford and Cobb return to the rotation, Northwestern has a chance to improve upon its 13-19 record in 2012-13.

Raphielle also writes for the NBE Basketball Report and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.

Mountain West admits official error, won’t change result of Boise State-Colorado State

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After reviewing video for a second straight day, the Mountain West has determined that Boise State should have beaten Colorado State on Wednesday night, but that due to an NCAA rule the outcome of the game cannot be changed.

Boise State’s James Webb III hit a one-handed, banked-in three at the end of overtime in Colorado State’s Moby Arena, breaking an 84-all tie, but after officials reviewed the play on the video monitor, they waived off the basket. Webb got the shot off in time, but the clock operator did not start the clock on time. After using stopwatch technology embedded in the video monitor, the referees determined that it took 1.3 seconds from the time that Webb caught the pass until the time that he got the shot off.

There were 0.8 seconds left when Boise State took the ball out of bounds.

On Thursday, the league announced that the referees followed the correct protocol to make the call.

They released a video that the referees used to make the decision, but upon further analysis — and amid a push on social media — it was determined that there was a difference between the “rate at which the embedded digital stopwatch advanced and the rate at which the game clock regressed during the instant replay review.”

In other words, the referees made the correct call with the evidence they had available, but the conference provided them with flawed evidence.

Boise State lost 97-93 in double-overtime.

The loss came four days after officials botched a call at the end of San Diego State’s win over New Mexico.

Akron reveals special bobble heads for LeBron, high school teammates

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When it comes to discussing some of the game of basketball’s best players, specifically those who went directly from high school to the NBA, a question that’s often asked is where said player would have attended college if forced (by rule) to do so. Kevin Garnett, Kobe Bryant and LeBron James are among those who have been discussed in this manner, and in the case of LeBron he’s got connections to two programs within his home state of Ohio.

LeBron’s connected with the Ohio State program, which is outfitted by the Nike’s LeBron signature line, but there’s another program with an even closer connection. That would be Akron, which is led by head coach Keith Dambrot, and all he did was serve as LeBron’s high school coach at St. Vincent/St. Mary’s HS in Akron during the player’s freshman and sophomore years at the school. Also on those teams were two future Akron Zips in guard Dru Joyce and forward Romeo Travis.

Thursday the school announced that it would be honoring James, Joyce and Travis with bobble head dolls to be given out before Akron’s home games against Buffalo (February 16; Joyce’s bobble head), Bowling Green (February 26; Travis) and Ohio (March 1; James).

All three bobble head dolls are wearing Akron uniforms, which in the case of LeBron allows fans to think back and imagine what could have been. Season ticket holders guaranteed one bobble head per account (on each of the three giveaway days), with the first 750 fans in attendance to receive one as well.