Mick Cronin

Cincinnati extends Mick Cronin’s contract through 2017-18 season

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In his first four seasons as head coach at Cincinnati the sailing wasn’t exactly smooth for head coach Mick Cronin, whose teams were unable to reach either the 20-win plateau or the NCAA tournament.

Cronin’s Bearcats have reached the NCAA tournament in each of their last three seasons, winning at least 22 games in each of those campaigns. With that in mind the school has rewarded Cronin, extending his contract through the 2017-18 season.

“In an industry where coaching changes occur frequently, Mick brings a tremendous amount of stability to our program and loyalty to our institution and community. When Coach Cronin first arrived at UC, he had one scholarship student-athlete on the roster.  Our basketball program has steadily progressed on an upward trajectory,” Cincinnati athletic director Whit Babcock said in a statement released by the school.

“Coming off a third consecutive NCAA tournament appearance, a fall semester with the team achieving its highest grade point average since 2007 and a strength of schedule ranked 27th nationally, I’m pleased with the accomplishments being made on the court and in the classroom.

“I look forward to working with Mick and our staff in achieving our championship aspirations for many years to come. Cincinnati men’s basketball is well positioned for the future.”

Cronin has led the Bearcats to 74 wins and a Sweet 16 appearance (2012) in the last three seasons. With Sean Kilpatrick announcing his intentions to return for his senior campaign and the addition of highly-touted power forward Jermaine Lawrence, the Bearcats are poised to make another trip to the NCAA tournament in 2014.

While no salary terms were disclosed in the school’s announcement, Cronin’s contract can be extended even further if Cincinnati returns to the NCAA tournament in 2014 and 2015.

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

VIDEO: Marquette’s Henry Ellenson shows off his versatility

Marquette's Henry Ellenson is fouled by Providence's Ben Bentil as he drives to the basket during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
(AP Photo/Morry Gash)
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I’m on record saying that I would consider Marquette freshman Henry Ellenson if I had the No. 2 pick in the NBA Draft, and while, at this point, I think that Brandon Ingram is probably going to end up going No. 2 — (Maybe No. 1???) — I still believe that Ellenson is going to be one of the best players from this draft class.

Why?

Well, just take a look at these highlights from the 26-point, 16-rebound performance he had in a win over Providence last night.

Then remember that Ellenson is 6-foot-11:

POSTERIZED: Pensacola State’s Jamal Thomas dunks through block attempt, makes coach go nuts

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A solid poster dunk went down in the junior college ranks last night as Pensacola State sophomore Jamal Thomas finished a dunk through a block attempt against Northwest Florida State.

The 6-foot-3 Thomas used his power and momentum to go through the opposing shot blocker and the play made his head coach, Pete Pena, go nuts with an over-exaggerated fist pump. The video is short, but be sure to watch for Pena’s reaction near the logo at the top right of the screen.