Charles Carmouche, Negus Webster-Chan

Negus Webster-Chan is stirring the pot in Hawaii


Negus Webster-Chan didn’t make enough of an impression at Mizzou.

That’s why he transferred to Hawaii.

In Hawaii’s active summer league, however, he’s made an immediate impression.

According to the Court Sense blog, he’s caused a bit of a stir, in fact. Not a bad idea in the laid-back Hawaiian summer league.

Chippy play in the second half of Solar Universe’s 97-84 win over Wealth Strategy Partners ramped up steadily, until a frustrated Julian Sensley got into it with UH senior guard Brandon Spearmanwith a minute or so left.

It was actually UH newcomer Negus Webster-Chan who was exchanging physical play and some elbows with Sensley on both ends and jawing at the proud (and pro) UH veteran some, especially after one deep 3-pointer. Webster-Chan had an otherwise great summer debut, scoring 25 points and affecting the game with rebounds and assists as well.

Anyway, some shoving ensued between Sensley and Spearman, and at least one swing (whiffed) was thrown by the latter. UH alum Zane Johnson (playing his first summer league game, in which he netted 33 points for Solar, the best of the night) applied a pretty impressive full-body tackle on the much bigger Sensley to get him to the floor and calm him down, and things settled down from there.

You’ll note that nobody laid a finger on Webster-Chan. Classic agent provocateur action.

Webster-Chan’s attitude might be exactly what the Rainbow Warriors need. Hawaii has been part of the Big West for a full season now, and they’re looking for an edge on their new rivals. Webster-Chan is a rangy wing player who presents matchup nightmares  in the Big West. His ability to rile Sensley and get away with it is a good sign that Gib Arnold is acquiring the kind of muscle he’ll need to win his new league and garner an auto-bid to the NCAA tournament. He’s already scored with the addition of former Nebraska standout Christian Standhardinger, and another lanky power-conference transfer should make the Big West crown easier to claim.

Arnold seems like a shrewd operator. Keep an eye on him and his team in the future.

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

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?