2013 McDonald's All American Games

Isaac Hamilton, Tim Floyd, and the all-important NLI release

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Isaac Hamilton, the No. 14 player in the country in the Class of 2013 according to Rivals, has asked out of his Letter of Intent.

Why?

Because instead of enrolling at UTEP this fall, Hamilton reportedly wants to play at USC.

As Raphielle Johnson wrote yesterday, this is yet another reminder of why it’s silly for an elite recruit to sign a letter of intent. And rest assured, Hamilton is an elite recruit, particularly when it comes to UTEP, who plays in a Conference USA that will become even more watered down next season when Memphis leaves for the AAC.

But it’s also an example of precisely why the Letter of Intent was created in the first place.

Floyd did the recruiting dirty work to earn Hamilton’s commitment. He built the 2013-2014 season around the idea that he would be bringing in this five-star, top 15 wing, and he scheduled his recruiting efforts in April and through two weeks in July with the notion that the Miners’ shooting guard spot would be set for at least one year.

And now, all of a sudden, Hamilton wants out.

If I were Tim Floyd, I’d be pissed, too.

And if I were Tim Floyd, I’d probably do everything I can to avoid having to release Hamilton. I’m vindictive and I would take pleasure is getting some measure of revenge.

But that doesn’t mean it’s the right thing for Floyd to do, either. He looks like a bitter ex-boyfriend that just got dumped, and in retaliation went and keyed his name into his ex’s car and slashed her tires. That may feel good in the moment, but it’s not exactly the best way to convince future recruits to enroll. Hamilton’s plan to try and win his appeal with the National Letter of Intent Steering Committee is to make public the fact that he’s transferring closer to home to be with his sick grandmother. He texted SNY.tv “Right now I’m not really looking into schools. Just been out here taking care of my grandma.”

That’s happening as Floyd trashes him in the media while columns like this get written about how wrong the NLI is and why it’s so wrong for Floyd to take his vengeance out on Hamilton.

There’s literally nothing positive that can come out of the decision to withhold Hamilton’s release.

Keno Davis did it back in 2010 to Joseph Young when Young wanted to go to Houston after signing an NLI with Providence. Davis last three years with the Friars before getting axed.

Let it go, Tim.

Your program will be better off.

You can find Rob on twitter @RobDauster.

BUBBLE BANTER: Key Atlantic 10, Big East bubble games

Kelan Martin, Kyle Alexander
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This post will be updated throughout the night.

Butler (KenPom: 41, RPI; 67) at Seton Hall (KenPom: 31, RPI: 37), 6:30 p.m.
LSU (KenPom: 53, RPI: 76) at South Carolina (KenPom: 45, RPI: 28), 7:00 p.m.
Nebraska at Wisconsin (KenPom: 51, RPI: 62), 7:00 p.m.
Saint Joseph’s (KenPom: 48, RPI: 30) at George Washington (KenPom: 71, RPI: 34), 7:00 p.m.
Missouri at Vanderbilt (KenPom: 35, RPI: 58), 9:00 p.m.
No. 14 Iowa State at Texas Tech (KenPom: 59, RPI: 51), 9:00 p.m.
Michigan (KenPom: 46, RPI: 56) at Minnesota, 9:00 p.m.
Washington (KenPom: 80, RPI: 57) at Utah (KenPom: 44, RPI: 16), 9:00 p.m.
San Diego State (KenPom: 65, RPI: 47) at Fresno State, 11:00 p.m.

PREGAME SHOOTAROUND: Ben Simmons, LSU get tested at South Carolina; more important bubble matchups

FILE - In this Nov. 24, 2015, file photo, LSU forward Ben Simmons (25) drives downcourt as teammate Antonio Blakeney (2) follows in the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against North Carolina State in New York. For all of his gaudy numbers, Simmons is still trying to figure out the best way to put the Tigers in position to win. And now the schedule gets harder, starting with Tuesday night's, Dec. 29, 2015, tilt against Wake Forest, followed by the opening of Southeastern Conference play against Vanderbilt and No. 10 Kentucky. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens, File)
(AP Photo/Kathy Willens)
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GAME OF THE NIGHT: LSU at South Carolina, 7:00 p.m.

LSU attempts to stay atop the SEC standings when they travel on the road to face South Carolina. The Gamecocks have been very tough at home this season and they’re trying to form a potential four-way tie in the conference standings if they’re able to win this one (and Texas A&M wins tonight). It will be intriguing to see how Ben Simmons fares against South Carolina’s stingy defense.

THIS ONE’S GOOD, TOO: Saint Joseph’s at George Washington, 7:00 p.m.

An important game in the Atlantic 10 as Saint Joseph’s heads to the Smith Center to play surging George Washington. The Colonels have won three straight games as they try to stay with VCU and Dayton and make a move to tie the Hawks in the league standings. CBT’s Rob Dauster will be in the building for this one, so make sure to follow him on Twitter for updates.

FIVE THINGS TO WATCH FOR

  1. No. 21 Baylor will have a tough one in the Big 12 when they go on the road at Kansas State. The Wildcats just knocked off Oklahoma and the Octagon of Doom is a very tough place to play, even if Kansas State is struggling in the standings.
  2. No. 16 SMU will try to stay in the lead in the American as they host Tulsa. The Golden Hurricane could really use a road win like this for its postseason chances.
  3. An intriguing Pac-12 contest tips as Washington heads to Utah. The Pac-12 standings are a mess right now, but these two teams still have a chance to make one final move for the regular season title if they start building momentum now.
  4. In the SEC, Alabama hosts No. 15 Texas A&M, a team that has lost three of its last four games. The Aggies will be favored in this road contest, but this one could be interesting because of Avery Johnson’s unique connection to Texas A&M. Avery Johnson Jr., a transfer guard sitting out this season at Alabama, played for the Aggies last season, so he could have some useful tips for his dad on slowing down Texas A&M’s potent offense.
  5. No. 20 Providence will be looking for revenge when they head to Milwaukee to face Marquette. The Golden Eagles currently sit eighth in the Big East standings, but they did win on the road by a point over the Friars earlier this season.