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.

Five-star 2017 guard Lonnie Walker cuts list to five schools

Men's U18 trials head shots and team photo on 6.15.16
Bart Young/USA Basketball
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Five-star shooting guard Lonnie Walker is coming off of a very good summer as he trimmed his list to five schools on Thursday night.

The 6-foot-4 native of Reading, Pennsylvania is still considering Arizona, Kentucky, Miami, Syracuse and Villanova, he announced on Twitter.

Regarded as the No. 26 overall prospect in the Class of 2017, Walker played with Team Final in the Nike EYBL this spring and summer as he averaged 16.6 points, 4.7 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game. Walker shot 45 percent from the field, 39 percent from three-point range and 72 percent from the free-throw line.

An efficient scorer who is learning to drive with both hands, Walker is very talented and the type of guard who might also be able to handle a bit as well.

VIDEO: Jim Boeheim makes TV appearance to talk Carmelo Anthony

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Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim has drawn attention for some recent comments about former Orange star Carmelo Anthony.

After Anthony captured his record third gold medal with USA Basketball, his former college coach told Mike Waters of the Syracuse Post-Standard that Anthony didn’t have a great chance at winning an NBA title.

“He’s unlikely to win an NBA title,” Boeheim said of Anthony. “He’s never been on a team that even had a remote chance of winning an NBA title.”

Boeheim maintains that he was speaking of Melo’s legacy being about more than an NBA title and that he’s one of the game’s greats thanks to other accomplishments like the Syracuse title and gold medals. On SportsCenter, Boeheim made sure to stress where those comments were coming from, while also making sure his kids would stop being mad at him.

It’s much easier to understand where Boeheim is coming from in this instance and it clears up something that will probably go away now.

Big Ten releases conference schedule

CHARLOTTE, NC - MARCH 22:  Head coach Tom Izzo of the Michigan State Spartans reacts against the Virginia Cavaliers during the third round of the 2015 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at Time Warner Cable Arena on March 22, 2015 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
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The Big Ten released its 2016-17 conference schedule on Thursday as the conference season begins on Dec. 27 with a four-game set.

Conference play will conclude on March 5th before the 20th annual Big Ten Tournament is played at the Verizon Center in Washington D.C. from March 8-12.

Some notable games include Penn State hosting Michigan State at the Palestra on Jan. 7.

You can view the full Big Ten schedule here.

Arizona’s Talbott Denny injures knee, out for season

AP Photo
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TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) Arizona senior forward Talbott Denny will miss the season after tearing the ACL and medial meniscus in his left knee.

The school said Wednesday that the 6-foot-5 graduate transfer from Lipscomb will have surgery.

Denny, from Tucson’s Salpointe Catholic High School, missed all of last season at Lipscomb because of a shoulder injury.

Roy Williams: ‘There’s no question’ more ACC games equal no Kentucky in non-conference

SAN ANTONIO, TX - MARCH 23: Head coach Roy Williams of the North Carolina Tar Heels looks on during the third round of the 2014 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament against the Iowa State Cyclones at the AT&T Center on March 23, 2014 in San Antonio, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images
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Back in June, when the ACC officially announced that they would be expanding the league schedule to 20 games in 2019, I tried to warn you that it was going to put a dent into the non-conference schedule and the amount of quality, on-campus games that we’ll get prior to January.

Roy Williams essentially confirmed this as fact this week.

The North Carolina head coach hopped on a podcast with ESPN and more or less said that the bigger league schedule is going to lead to an end of some of UNC’s marquee home-and-home series.

“My feeling right now, and it could change by ’19, heck I could be fired by ’19, but my feeling right now is to play our conference schedule, play one exempt event where you have really good teams, and other than that play home games to help out your revenue and help out your budget,” Williams said. “We have the ACC/Big Ten and that’s not going to go away. So it’s 21 games already scheduled.”

When asked specifically if this would put an end to UNC’s series with Kentucky, Williams said, “Oh yeah, there’s no question. Why would I need to do that?”

There’s two reasons this makes sense. On the one hand, North Carolina needs to fill their home arena a certain number of times to help with the bottom line of the athletic department. They make enough off of ticket sales, merchandise sales, parking fees and food and beverage that they can afford to pay out more than $50,000 to bring a smaller opponent into their arena. More than that, playing a series of weaklings early in the year allows players to gain confidence, it allows Williams to figure out what his rotation will be and who can handle playing at this level, and it gives newcomers a chance to assimilate into his team against players that just aren’t that good.

And when a larger ACC schedule severely limits the number of non-conference games that UNC will be able to play, what’s going to get cut are the contracts that require the Tar Heels to play on the road when they don’t have to.

So buh-bye, Kentucky, it is.