The debate of which point guard is the nation’s best tends to end rather quickly thanks to the presence of Oklahoma State’s Marcus Smart. Yes, an Aaron Craft (Ohio State) can enter the discussion, but it’s tough to argue with a player who would have been a high lottery pick had he not made the decision to return to Stillwater for his sophomore season.
Another point guard who deserves mention is Arizona State sophomore Jahii Carson, who arrived on the scene after sitting out the 2011-12 season and nearly helped to lead the Sun Devils to the NCAA tournament. For his efforts Carson was named Pac-12 Co-Freshman of the Year (shared with UCLA’s Shabazz Muhammad), and in many circles he’s the early favorite to win Pac-12 Player of the Year in 2013-14.
As for the question of who the nation’s fastest point guard may be, that discussion may not take very long either. Approximately 3.4 seconds to be more concise, thanks to the efforts of Arizona State administrative assistant Andrew Taylor.
Taylor grabbed one play from Arizona State’s 72-62 win at Oregon State on January 10 that illustrates just how fast Carson is. (Yes, Memphis’ Joe Jackson may have an argument.)
Doug Haller of AZCentral.com took the time to break down the play, which began with a made free throw by Oregon State’s Devon Collier, step by step.
Of course there will be arguments that the inbounds pass from Jonathan Gilling didn’t hurt in Carson’s quest to go from end to end, but this display of speed with the basketball is something else. And that trait (speed) is just one reason why Carson’s so highly regarded within the Pac-12 (and nationally).
Can he lead the Sun Devils to their first NCAA tournament appearance since 2009? That’s certainly a possibility, and players such as Jordan Bachynski and Jermaine Marshall (transfer from Penn State) will help in this mission.
Raphielle can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.
Wichita State senior forward Anton Grady received some positive news on Saturday as a neurosurgeon reviewed MRI results, which are negative for spinal cord trauma.
According to a release from Wichita State, doctors believed Grady suffered a spinal cord concussion during a collision on Friday after he was taken off the floor in a stretcher and taken to a hospital in an ambulance. CT and MRI scans on Friday both turned up negative, but the news of Saturday’s results are an even more encouraging sign for Grady.
The injury for Grady occurred during a Friday loss to Alabama during the AdvoCare Invitational as the senior’s condition has improved since the collision. Grady will receive physical therapy over the next few days and doctors will check his progress before he is released from the hospital.
Grady has been alert and responsive to questions and had feeling in his extremities on Friday, but the use of his arms and legs was limited. By Saturday morning, Grady had improved the use of his extremities.
The 6-foot-8 Grady has averaged 9 points and 6 rebounds per game this season in his first season with the Shockers. The Cleveland State transfer is shooting 39 percent from the field.
Colorado sophomore forward Tory Miller has been reprimanded by the Pac-12 and he also apologized for biting Air Force’s Hayden Graham earlier this week.
During Colorado’s win over Air Force on Wednesday, Miller was assessed a Flagrant 2 Dead Ball Technical Foul and ejected with 12:25 left in the second half after biting Graham during a loose ball.
In a release from the Pac-12, they announced reprimanding Miller, but he will not be suspended.
“All of our student-athletes must adhere to the Pac-12’s Standards of Conduct and Sportsman-ship,” Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott said in the release. “Regardless of Mr. Miller’s frustration and emotion, such behavior is unacceptable and he is being appropriately reprimanded.”
Miller also released his apology in the same release.
“I would like to apologize for my actions during the Air Force game. I would like to apologize to Hayden Graham, Air Force, my teammates and fans. It was a heat of the moment thing. I’m an emotional player, but I let my emotions get the best of me. I will use this as a learning experience and focus on helping my teammates and respecting my opponents for the rest of the season and beyond,” Miller said.
For Miller to not be suspended for this is good news for him and Colorado since he won’t miss any additional action, but did the Pac-12 make the right decision on this?