Georgetown is facing some questions about its frontcourt as they enter the 2013-14 season. Greg Whittingham is out with a torn ACL and Otto Porter is in a Washington Wizards uniform now, so the Hoyas will rely heavily on junior Mikael Hopkins and senior Nate Lubick to play the bulk of the interior minutes early in the season.
But what about UCLA transfer Josh Smith? The former highly-touted recruit was a freshman all-conference choice in the Pac-12 but had a disappointing sophomore season before transferring six games into his junior season at UCLA across the country to Georgetown.
Smith arrived at Georgetown around 350 pounds, but was down to 310 as of early August as he strives for a playing weight around 290.
His weight and motor are the biggest questions marks, but as ESPN.com’s Dana O’Neil reported today from Georgetown’s practice, Smith’s return date is now a matter of speculation as well. Smith was scheduled to return second semester this season, but head coach John Thompson III told O’Neil that a decision from the NCAA is looming, which could mean Smith gets to play the entire 2013-14 season — or at least before the second semester begins depending on the ruling.
As of right now, Smith won’t be available until the second semester, but Thompson said he’s awaiting a decision from the NCAA, intimating there’s a chance Smith could play immediately.
Thompson declined to get into specifics to the nature of the request.
“We don’t know when or how long we’ll have him,’’ Thompson said. “But we think we should know pretty soon.’’
Having Smith for the entire season would certainly help Georgetown, as he could continue to play himself into shape and start to adapt to game speed and playing with new teammates in a new system.
But as mentioned before, the weight and dedication Smith puts into this season is still the overriding question. Even JT3 sounds as if he’s unsure what the final results for Smith will be saying to O’Neil, “He has to make a decision if he wants to be good or not. He has all the tools. He always has. When and if he commits, he’ll see the positive results. It’s a process.’’
During North Carolina’s blowout win over N.C. State on Jan. 8, the Tar Heels weren’t the only ones in the building who were feeling it.
As it turns out, North Carolina ball boy Asher Lucas was the hottest shooter of anyone in the building that night.
During halftime of that Jan. 8 game, Lucas nailed three consecutive halfcourt shots, as his father, Adam Lucas, a North Carolina columnist, released the video this week to YouTube. The video quickly went viral as Asher’s unreal streak of shots was all over TV and the Internet.
The Tar Heels have been struggling to find consistent perimeter shooting for the last few seasons, so maybe they need to start scouting Asher for a future roster spot.
Milwaukee picked up a Horizon League win on Friday night as guard Brock Stull knocked in a buzzer-beater to topple Cleveland State.
Stull only had four points on the night as he played 30 minutes and finished with five assists and six rebounds.
Oregon released a statement on Friday afternoon that said star forward Dillon Brooks had seen doctors and was in a walking boot, but gave no further update on his condition.
Brooks suffered what the program termed a “lower leg injury” on Thursday night against Cal. The injury was to his left leg – on replay, it looked like he rolled his ankle – which is concerning because his left foot is the foot that he injured over the summer, which caused him to miss the first three games of the season.
“He’ll be evaluated in the next couple of days and see where he’s at,” head coach Dana Altman said after Thursday’s game.
Allonzo Trier’s most recent drug test came back negative, meaning that the leading returning scorer for the Wildcats will be eligible to play on Saturday when Arizona plays a visit to UCLA.
Trier had been suspended for the first 19 games of the season following a positive test for a performance-enhancing drug. He appealed to the NCAA and actually won, claiming that he unknowingly ingested the substance after someone he trusted gave him a product to help him recover from a car accident during the offseason.
The NCAA’s stipulation, however, was that he could not play until the PED had cleared his system.
Trier averaged 14.8 points last season for Arizona. He’ll join a back court that already includes Kadeem Allen, Rawle Alkins and Kobi Simmons, as well as Kadeem Allen and Parker Jackson-Cartwright. Along with Lauri Markkanen, who has the look of a lottery pick, Trier was expected to be Arizona’s best player this season. While he has not been allowed to play this year, Trier has been practicing and traveling with the team. It may take him a while to work his way back into game shape and into the flow of the team, but it won’t be because he’s rusty.
The Wildcats are currently 17-2 on the year and 6-0 in the Pac-12. They play No. 3 UCLA in Pauley Pavilion on Saturday. The Bruins are a game out of first place in the conference standings.
Myles Davis announced in a post on twitter on Friday evening that he will be leaving the Xavier basketball team.
“I would like to thank everyone and Xavier for allowing me to get my degree but my family and I have decided that it is time for me to move on from Xavier and start a new chapter in my life,” Davis wrote in the statement. “Wish my teammates the best of luck the rest of the season.”
Davis averaged 10.8 points and 4.1 assists while shooting 38.1 percent from three as a junior in 2015-16, and his skill set would have filled a void that the Musketeers are currently missing on their roster.
But he was suspended for the first 15 games of the regular season following a pair of incidents involving an ex-girlfriend over the summer, and since being reinstated to the team just three games ago, Davis has averaged 11 minutes, scored just two points and shot 0-for-8 from the field and 0-for-6 from three.