Colorado Athletics

Colorado quarterback Shane Dillon quits football, will transfer to play college basketball

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After spending his first season at Colorado as a redshirt quarterback, Shane Dillon has elected to transfer from the university in order to pursue a college basketball career.

source:
Colorado Athletics

“I’ve grown up playing basketball my entire life, I’ve always been a basketball kid and have played since I was 4 years old,” Dillon said in a school statement on Tuesday. “I was a late bloomer in football and never started playing quarterback until halfway through my sophomore year.

“I always kind of felt my decision that I had to play football was forced upon me a little bit,” Dillon added. “People told me I had to make a decision by the end of my junior year between football and basketball because quarterbacks all seemed to commit pretty early.  Basketball has always been my passion, and even though I really enjoyed my year here, I felt the time is now for me to make the change.”

The 6-foot-5 Dillon averaged 25 points and 12 rebounds as a junior at Christian High School in El Cajon, Calif. in 2011. He was a first-team All-Coastal League and first-team All-East County during that season. Dillon was a three-star quarterback according to Rivals, and decided to commit to the Buffaloes in May 2011 over offers from Arizona, Cincinnati, Ohio State and Vanderbilt.

“He’s a wing with good size and the ability to shoot, handle and pass it,” Marlon Cherry, Dillon’s AAU coach told Jeff Eisenberg of Yahoo! Sports The Dagger on Tuesday. “He’s a very good passer and from what he told me he’s in shape and he played pretty much every day at the gym at Colorado, so he should still be a pretty darn good player.”

According to the university, Dillon had initially contacted Tad Boyle, who has led the Buffaloes to two NCAA tournament appearances, about joining the team. However, no scholarships are available for the ex-signal caller. Eisenberg reported that San Diego, UC Irvine and Holy Cross all recruited Dillon when he was a junior in high school.

“Colorado is always going to have a special place in my heart,” Dillon said. “I just have to go somewhere to continue my education and play basketball.”

Terrence is also the lead writer at NEHoopNews.com and can be followed on Twitter: @terrence_payne

UNLV’s Stephen Zimmerman out with a knee injury

UNLV forward Stephen Zimmerman Jr. shoots against San Diego State during an NCAA college basketball game Saturday, Jan. 30, 2016, in Las Vegas. (L.E. Baskow/Las Vegas Sun via AP)
(L.E. Baskow/Las Vegas Sun via AP)
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The injury Stephen Zimmerman suffered on Saturday will keep the star UNLV freshman out for at least a week, a source told NBC Sports.

The injury is not thought to be serious, however. Zimmerman may be kept out for longer as a precaution, but that’s a result of the Runnin’ Rebels being in a situation where the rest of their regular season is relatively meaningless.

They’re not getting an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament regardless of how they finish out league play. With back-up center Ben Carter out with a torn ACL, it’s more important to make sure that Zimmerman, who is averaging 10.6 points and 9.1 boards this season, is totally healthy for the Mountain West tournament.

That tournament, mind you, will be played at UNLV’s Thomas & Mack Center.

So the Runnin’ Rebels, regardless of how poor they’ve played this season, will always have a chance to land an automatic bid.

Anyway, the more interesting aspect of this story is how Zimmerman injured the knee. It was a completely avoidable play that came after the whistle, but I’m not sure it was what you would call a “dirty play”. You tell me:

VIDEO: Buddy Hield is ‘all money’ on game-winning three vs. No. 24 Texas

Oklahoma guard Buddy Hield (24) takes a shot over Oklahoma State forward Chris Oliver during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game in Stillwater, Okla., Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2016. (AP Photo/Brody Schmidt)
(AP Photo/Brody Schmidt)
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With a little more than three minutes left on Monday night, No. 24 Texas held a 57-51 lead on No. 3 Oklahoma in Norman as Jordan Woodard struggled again and Buddy Hield failed to find the rhythm that he had throughout the first three months of the season.

At that point in the game, Hield was 4-for-14 from the floor with 15 points and four turnovers. He had just missed a pair of wide-open threes

“I couldn’t make a shot,” Hield said after the game. But that changed down the stretch. First, Hield finally got a three to drop. On the next possession, he got all the way to the rim and scored. On the following two possessions, he was fouled on a drive to the rim and hit four free throws. And after missing a pull-up jumper, Hield did this:

“I told coach I wanted the ball,” Hield said, “I saw Lammert coming to bite, so I pulled up.”

“It’s all money.”

Hield is already the favorite to win National Player of the Year, and this performance is only going to help his cause further. Think about it like this: Buddy was not good on Monday night, at least according to his (admittedly lofty) standards. But he still finished with 27 points and shook off a cold shooting night just in time to take over down the stretch.

Now think about this: Hield’s head coach has enough confidence in him to hand him the keys in the final minutes despite the fact that he’s struggling and on a team that has two other players that Lon Kruger trusts on game-winning possessions. Think about it. When Oklahoma beat West Virginia at the buzzer, it was Jordan Woodard that the play was drawn up for. When they beat LSU, it was Isaiah Cousins that got the rock on the final possession while Hield was used as a decoy. .

Want to talk about coaching luxuries?

Kruger has three guards that can shoot, penetrate and score, and penetrate and kick, and one of them is the National Player of the Year that doesn’t mind being used as a decoy.