Tyler Ulis

Meet Tyler Ulis, the nation’s latest in-demand ’14 point guard (VIDEO)

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When Emmanuel Mudiay committed to SMU, he did a lot more than just pick Larry Brown over Coach Cal and a program that hasn’t been to the NCAA tournament in 20 years over a team 16 months removed from a national title.

He also sent some of the nation’s biggest programs scrambling to find a point guard to take over next season.

Thanks to Josh Perkins committing to Gonzaga on the same day as Mudiay committed to SMU, four of the top six point guards in the country have picked their school. Many believe that Tyus Jones is headed to Duke, and those same folks think Jordan McLaughlin will remain out on the west coast.

That leaves programs like Kentucky and Michigan State chasing Quentin Snider and Tyler Ulis, the last two of ESPN’s top 15 point guards.

Snider is from Louisville and a former Louisville commit, but the more interesting target may end up being Ulis.

Prior to Mudiay’s commitment, many believed that Ulis would be headed up to East Lansing to take over the Spartan’s point guard role when Keith Appling graduates. But now that he has an offer in hand from Kentucky, that may not be the case any more.

Ulis is not a one-and-done point guard. What makes him so effective isn’t going to shine through on the mixtape above. But what he does well is win. He’s tough, he’s a nightmare defensively, he can create off the bounce, he can score when he needs to, and he can run a team. He’s a four-year player that’s good enough to make an all-league team for three of those years.

That fits well at Michigan State. It may not fit as well as Kentucky, where Ulis will be recruited over when Coach Cal targets the next John Wall or Derrick Rose or Emmanuel Mudiay.

But saying no to Kentucky is not an easy thing to do.

Anyway, the video above will give you a little taste of the guy that may have just become the most coveted point guard left on the board.

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.