Sean Miler

Pac-12, Mountain West to form officiating alliance

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There were a few incidents involving officials over the last few months, both in the season and offseason, and as a result, it’s a made college basketball take notice.

While the NCAA has its own dean of officials (John Adams), conferences handle their own referees as well, which is why the Mountain West and the Pac-12 conferences are teaming up to form an officiating alliance.

All officials working within those two conferences will be subject to the same reviews and essentially, from that standpoint, the refs will be in the same conference.

Bobby Diebler will be the coordinator of officials. Diebler worked three Finals Fours as an official and spent 14 years as the Mountain West coordinator of officials. Ed Rush held that same position with the Pac-12. But, well, we all know what happened.

The leagues will also participate in a clinic with several other west coast-oriented conferences such as the Big West, WAC and West Coast Conference to better train the referees.

In addition to Diebler, the alliance will appoint a deputy coordinator to oversee evaluation and training.

“Our objective is to provide the best officiating program for our teams and student-athletes,” Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott said in a statement. “Under this new alliance, we will be better positioned to attract top lead officials, and to achieve the greatest consistency and accountability deserving of our excellent basketball programs. This alliance also allows us to further develop a rigorous training, evaluation and development program for the next generation of elite officials.”

“The Mountain West is very excited about this new venture with the Pac-12 Conference and the overall goal of improving men’s basketball officiating in both leagues should be readily apparent,” said Craig Thompson, Commissioner of the Mountain West. “Bobby Dibler has decades of experience and we are confident that he will aptly build one of the best staffs in the country.”

Follow David Harten on Twitter at @David_Harten

VIDEO: Arizona State’s Torian Graham dunks over teammate

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Arizona State fans won’t get a chance to see Torian Graham take the floor this season, but he did sky over fellow teammates (and transfer) Shannon Evans on Friday night at the team’s Maroon and Gold Madness. The 6-foot-4 Graham is a former Buffalo commit — Evans also came from Buffalo — and both players will have to sit out the 2015-16 season due to NCAA transfer regulations.

Graham hasn’t had a chance to get into a Division I game, but he’ll be able to play for the Sun Devils next season. For now, fans can look forward to Graham’s athleticism on the wing in pregame dunk routines.

A former top-100 prospect, Graham also pulled off this ridiculous move in the dunk contest.


VIDEOS: Bill Self makes two skits, Bragg plays piano

Bill Self
AP Photo
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Kansas head coach Bill Self is known for being unique for the annual Late Night at the Phog and this season, he went with some parody videos centered around the recent DirecTV ads. In the two skits, Self plays himself — which acknowledges his many accolades — while playing alongside “short shorts Bill Self” and “graduate assistant Bill Self”.

Hard to say if these videos top Self showing up in a suit like Andrew Wiggins last year, but there do have good promotional value for the program and Self.

Kansas players also had their chance to shine, with both men’s and women’s teams doing dances. Perry Ellis and Jamari Traylor also attempted to lip sync to Michael Jackson. Freshman forward Carlton Bragg showed some solid ability on the piano, which got the crowd going. Bragg was also one of the strong points in a scrimmage.

Of course, the highlight of the night is Bill Self losing $10,000 on a halfcourt shot, but here’s everything else notable from Late Night at the Phog.