North Carolina v Kansas

Report: Another Hairston to Haydn Thomas link emerges


USA Today is really on top of things this summer. Eric Prisbell, the paper’s college basketball reporter, has found evidence of an earlier traffic stop in which Hairston was driving a car with ties to Haydn Thomas. Thomas is the man whose name appears on the rental receipt for the 2013 Yukon that Hairston was driving on June 5, when he was pulled over and arrested for marijuana possession.

Read CBT’s previous coverage of P.J. Hairston’s troublesome summer.

Now, evidence of a previous traffic stop has emerged, with arrows once again pointing from Hairston to Thomas.

From the USA Today report:

North Carolina’s leading scorer last basketball season, P.J. Hairston, was cited for speeding May 13 while driving a Hertz rental car that was paid for by a woman who shares a Durham address with Haydn Thomas, a convicted felon whose rented sports utility vehicle Hairston was driving when he was arrested last month.

Hairston was cited for speeding while driving a 2012 Chevrolet Camaro SS with Virginia license plates, a Durham County District Court clerk said. The Camaro was paid for by a woman named Catinia Farrington, whose Durham address matches that of Thomas, according to the Hertz receipt obtained by USA TODAY Sports.

Thomas has claimed he does not know Hairston, and that a series of coincidences resulted in Hairston driving his rental car. This second link, as circuitous as it may be, throws some doubt on that statement. We will, as always, keep an eye on this story, and tell you the minute we learn more.

Eric Angevine is the editor of Storming the Floor. He tweets @stfhoops.

Texas lands commitment from top 100 center

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James Banks announced on Thursday that he has committed to Texas, joining Jacob Young in Shaka Smart’s first recruiting class as the head coach of the Longhorns.

Banks is an interesting prospect. A 6-foot-10 center from Georgia, Banks is a still-developing prospect that was recruited more on his potential than his immediate ability.

“James Banks emerged as a good low post prospect this spring and summer,” NBC Recruiting Analyst Scott Phillips said. “With a good set of hands, some offensive potential and a frame that can add weight, Banks is a nice upside grab for Texas.”

He’s probably a few years away from having a major impact in the Big 12, but he may not have that much time to develop. Cameron Ridley, Prince Ibeh and Conner Lamert all graduate after this season, meaning that Banks is going to have to contribute immediately when he sets foot on the Austin campus for the 2016-17 season.

Texas has three commitments in the Class of 2015. Smart convinced Kerwin Roach and Eric Davis to remain committed to the program when he took over for Rick Barnes while he landed a commitment from Tevin Mack, who pledged to Smart when he was at VCU.

Memphis guard could miss season with shoulder injury

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Memphis just cannot catch a break.


It’s to the point where I almost feel bad for Josh Pastner.

Today, reported that Kedren Johnson, a 6-foot-4 point guard that was on track towards being an all-SEC point guard at Vanderbilt, could end up missing the season due to a shoulder injury. If he can handle the pain he can avoid surgery and play with the injury, but at the very least, Johnson is going to be less than his best.

Johnson averaged 6.7 points and 2.7 assists last season for the Tigers. He sat out 2013-14 after leaving Vanderbilt and entered last season incredibly out of shape. There was hope that he would be able to make a bigger impact this season and help fill the void at the point guard spot.

This news comes on the heels of Memphis finding out that Jaylen Fisher is heading to UNLV. Who’s Jaylen Fisher? Well, he’s a point guard and top 40 recruit from Memphis that was Pastner’s No. 1 recruiting target that opted to leave the city for his college hoops instead of play for the Tigers.

That’s a bad sign, but not quite as bad as Memphis losing star center Austin Nichols — another local kid — to a transfer over the summer. Nichols transferred to Virginia.