LSU Athletics

LSU head coach Johnny Jones arrives at ‘Bayou Madness’ in a Delorean

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There are high hopes for the LSU Tigers in 2013-14. Head coach Johnny Jones’ team may not be discussed in the same realm as Kentucky or Florida when it comes to competing for an SEC title, the Tigers certainly don’t lack for talent. With forward Johnny O’Bryant deciding to return for his junior season and talented newcomers such as Jarell Martin, Jordan Mickey and Tim Quarterman joining the program, LSU has the talent needed to return to the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2009.

Can LSU turn back the clock to a time when they were consistently a factor within the SEC? That’s the hope, with Coach Jones’ entrance at the team’s “Bayou Madness” event influenced by the movie “Back to the Future”. Coach Jones arrived at the PMAC in a Delorean, and after exiting the vehicle opened up his lab coat to reveal an “old school” LSU jersey (Jones played at the school from 1981-84).

The original “Back to the Future” was released in July 1985, just months before the start of what would turn into a special season for LSU basketball. That team became the first 11-seed to reach the Final Four, beating Purdue, Memphis, Georgia Tech and Kentucky before falling to eventual national champion Louisville in the national semis.

LSU opens regular season play on November 12 at UMass in what should be a challenging contest, with dynamic point guard Chaz Williams leading the way for the Minutemen.

h/t Sporting News

Florida Gulf Coast’s Demetris Morant out 3-4 months

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Florida Gulf Coast redshirt junior forward Demetris Morant is expected to miss the next 3-4 months after undergoing surgery last week to repair a stress fracture in his right shin, the school announced on Tuesday.

The 6-foot-9 forward averaged 4.5 points, 4.4 blocks and 1.3 blocks per game in 33 appearances (18 starts) for the Eagles during the 2014-15 season.

“This is obviously an unfortunate setback for Demetris, but it was a procedure that needed to be done,” Florida Gulf Coast head coach Dooley said in a statement. “We decided it would be best to have it completed now to hopefully get him back for A-Sun play. It’s an opportunity now for other guys to step up in his absence, and I have confidence they’ll get the job done.”

The Eagles have the top frontline in the Atlantic Sun, one that returns Marc-Eddy Norelia and Filip Cvjeticanin, a 3-point shooter who missed all of last season recovering from back surgery. VCU transfer Antravious Simmons becomes eligible in the second semester.

Florida Gulf Coast begins the 2015-16 season on Nov. 14 against Ohio.

Bill Self on Cheick Diallo: ‘It may be a couple of more weeks’

2015 McDonald's All American Game
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Cheick Diallo is currently practicing with Kansas, but his eligibility still remains in question.

On Monday, Kansas head coach Bill Self appeared on “The Border Patrol” on WHB-AM 810 and was asked to update the status of his freshman big man.

“He’s been cleared to practice,” Self told hosts Steven St. John and Nate Bukaty. “(His status) is depending on what they find throughout from the information we submit to them whenever we get it all together.

“A lot of people think, ‘Well, why wouldn’t it all be together?’ Well there’s a lot of reasons why. It’s because they told us recently some things that they just wanted. Instead of just throwing it to them piece by piece, they requested we to just submit it all together, so it may be a couple of more weeks before we’re able to submit everything when you’re talking about getting information from schools in Mali and everything like that.

“But we hope in two weeks, maybe three weeks, before we have a definite answer. But right now, Cheick is like everybody else. He’s practicing.”

Diallo, a 6-foot-9 forward from Mali is allowed to practice with the Jayhawks, but has been waiting to be cleared by the NCAA Eligibility Center despite enrolling in classes over the summer and earning six credits. Self anticipated this would be a long process, but has remained confident Diallo, the top-5 recruit in Class of 2015, will eventually be cleared to play this season.

For three years, Diallo attended Our Savior New American School in Centereach, New York, which is currently under NCAA review. In September, Pitt freshman Damon Wilson, Diallo’s teammate at OSNA, was cleared to play.

Kansas opens the season on Nov. 13 against Northern Colorado.