University of Houston Athletics

Report: Houston transfer Joseph Young taking visits

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After announcing his transfer from Houston a few weeks ago, former Houston guard Joseph Young is taking a pair of visits to Pac-12 schools, a source told ESPN’s Jeff Goodman.

Young — a 6’3 guard — averaged 18 points per game for the Cougars last season, but left Houston after his father Michael Young — a member of Houston’s legendary Phi Slama Jama and the Houston Athletics Hall of Fame — refused re-assignment under head coach James Dickey’s staff after previously serving as a director of basketball operations for seven seasons. Michael Young spent 16 years working in the University of Houston’s athletic department before his departure.

Per a source in Goodman’s report, Young is currently taking a visit to Oregon and also plans to see Arizona. The report also mentions that the Young family will request a waiver from the NCAA to allow Joseph to join his new team immediately without sitting out a year due to NCAA transfer regulations.

Joseph Young has one season of eligibility remaining, and sources told that the family will likely request a waiver from the NCAA for him to play this season. Although, the sources said, it’s more likely he’ll have to sit out next season.

If Young is granted the waiver and allowed to play, then his scoring punch and shooting ability will certainly help any team immediately. Young shot 42 percent from three-point territory last season and would give Oregon or Arizona — or any other school he could end up at — a much-needed boost in that department.

Scott also writes for NY2LA Sports and can be followed on Twitter @sphillipshoops

Syracuse receives mixed news on sanctions appeals

Jim Boeheim
Associated Press
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Wednesday the NCAA made its ruling on two appeals of sanctions made by Syracuse University, with the news being mixed for the men’s basketball program.

On the positive side the NCAA ruled that Syracuse will be docked two scholarships per season for the next four years, as opposed to the original ruling of three. As a result Jim Boeheim’s program only has to account for the loss of eight total scholarships, meaning that they’ll have 11 to fill in each of the next four seasons as opposed to ten.

One scholarship may not seem like a big deal, but in a sport where you only get 13 (when not dealing with sanctions) getting that grant-in-aid back really helps from a recruiting standpoint.

As for the negatives, they both concern Boeheim. Not only has there yet to be a ruling on Boeheim’s appeal of his nine-game suspension that goes into effect when ACC play begins in January (that appeal is being heard separately), but the appeal to reinstate the wins that were vacated as part of the sanctions was denied. As a result Boeheim officially has 868 wins instead of 969 (not counting today’s game against Charlotte).

And with Mike Hopkins set to take over as head coach in 2018, the denial means that college basketball will have to wait quite some time before anyone threatens to join Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski in the 1,000 wins club.

While not having the wins officially reinstated does hurt, getting a scholarship back for each of the next four seasons is a bigger deal when it comes to the long-term health of the Syracuse program. Also of great importance will be the ruling regarding Boeheim’s suspension, as a suspended coach is not allowed to have any contact with his players or coaching staff while serving the penalty.

And with the original ruling due to take up half of Syracuse’s league slate, not having Boeheim (or the chance to speak with him) is a big deal when it comes to this current team.

St. John’s forward Kassoum Yakwe cleared by NCAA

Chris Mullin
AP Photo/Rick Bowmer
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St. John’s forward Kassoum Yakwe has been cleared by the NCAA to play this season and will be eligible immediately, the school announced on Wednesday.

Yakwe is a 6-foot-8 forward that reclassified and enrolled at St. John’s this fall. He attended the same high school as Kansas forward Cheick Diallo, who was also cleared by the NCAA to play today.

St. John’s played in the Maui Invitational this week, and Yakwe did not take part. His first game with the Johnnies will be on Dec. 2nd against Fordham if the program plans to play his this season.

The question that must be asked, however, is whether or not he will suit up or simply redshirt. The Johnnies are in the midst of a serious rebuild and will be without their other elite recruit this season, Marcus Lovett. Lovett was ruled a partial qualifier. Would it make sense to burn a year of eligibility on what make amount to a wasted season, or will head coach Chris Mullin opt to save that year for down the road?