Bob McKillop

Report: Atlantic 10 looking to add Davidson


The carousel that is conference realignment never seems to stop.

According to a report from Jeff Goodman of the Atlantic 10 is close to adding Davidson, with the Wildcats joining the conference in 2014.

Davidson, currently a member of the Southern Conference, was a target of the Colonial Athletic Association back in October but the school reportedly turned down an invite from the league.

Bob McKillop’s program has won four of the last seven Southern Conference tournament titles, including back-to-back crowns in 2012 and 2013.

The move to add Davidson may be a preemptive strike of sorts by A-10 commissioner Bernadette McGlade, with this news coming on the heels of the conference adding George Mason. The Patriots begin play in the A-10 in 2013, moving the conference to 13 members.

Four schools are leaving the Atlantic 10 this summer: Temple (American Athletic Conference), Charlotte (Conference USA), Butler and Xavier (Big East).

And with rumors that the Big East may ultimately go from ten to 12 members, adding Dayton and Saint Louis in 2014, Davidson would be the Atlantic 10’s twelfth member if that were to happen.

Goodman’s report also mentions that Siena, currently a member of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, is also under consideration for a spot in the A-10.

If Davidson were to leave it would be a major blow for the SoCon, which has already lost the College of Charleston to the CAA. The Cougars will play their inaugural season in the CAA this fall.

Also, Appalachian State and Georgia Southern have announced their intentions to join the Sun Belt in 2014.

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

POSTERIZED: Wyoming’s Josh Adams takes flight

Josh Adams
Associated Press
Leave a comment

Not only is Wyoming senior guard Josh Adams the lone returning starter from a team that won the Mountain West tournament last season, but he’s also one of college basketball’s best dunkers. And if anyone may have forgotten about his jumping ability, Adams put it on display Saturday during the Cowboys’ win over Montana State.

After splitting two Montana State players at the top of the key Adams attacked the basket, dunking with two hands over a late-arriving help-side defender. If you’re going to rotate over, have to do it quicker than that.

Video credit: Wyoming Athletics

Defensive progress will determine No. 4 Iowa State’s ceiling

Monte Morris
Associated Press
Leave a comment

Even with the coaching change from Fred Hoiberg to Steve Prohm, No. 4 Iowa State remains one of the nation’s best offensive teams. Given their skills on that end of the floor many teams find it tough to go score for score with the Cyclones, and that’s what happened to Illinois in Iowa State’s 84-73 win in the Emerald Coast Classic title game.

Georges Niang scored 23 points and grabbed eight rebounds, with Monté Morris adding 20, nine rebounds and six assists and Abdel Nader 18 points as the Cyclones moved to 5-0 on the season. The three-pointers weren’t falling in the second half, as Iowa State shot 0-f0r-12, but they shot 19-for-24 inside of the arc to pull away from a team that lost big man Mike Thorne Jr. late in the first half to a left knee injury.

Illinois’ loss of size in the paint opened things up offensively for Iowa State, and the Cyclones took advantage. But where this group grabbed control of the game was on the defensive end of the floor, and that will be the key for a team with Big 12 and national title aspirations.

Nader took on the responsibility of defending Illinois’ Malcolm Hill (20 points) in the second half and did a solid job of keeping the junior wing in check, with that serving as the spark to a 12-2 run that put the game away. There’s no denying that the Cyclones can put points on the board; most of the talent from last season is back and the productivity on that end of the floor hasn’t changed as a result. Niang’s one of the nation’s best forwards, and both Morris (who now ranks among the country’s best point guards) and Nader have taken significant strides in their respective games.

Iowa State will add Deonte Burton in December, giving them another option to call upon. Front court depth is a bit of a concern, as Iowa State can ill afford to lose a Niang or Jameel McKay, but there’s enough on the roster to compensate for that and force mismatches in other areas.

But the biggest question for this group is how effective they can become at stringing together stops. Illinois certainly had its moments in both halves Saturday night, but Iowa State also showed during the game’s decisive stretch that they can step up defensively. The key now is to do so consistently, and if that occurs the Cyclones can be a threat both within the Big 12 and nationally.