SMU’s Jalen Jones announces he will transfer

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Eyebrows were raised during and after SMU’s season-opening win against TCU on Friday evening when Jalen Jones, SMU’s leading scorer and top offensive player from a year ago, did not dress for the game. There were no reports of Jones being hurt or suspended, so questions were naturally raised.

Jones’ announcement of his decision to transfer is an immediate blow for Larry Brown and the Mustangs; replacing his 14.0 ppg and 7.8 rpg, to go along with 32.4 mpg he logged last season won’t be an easy task.

Ironically enough, the concern of playing time is a probable reason Jones decided to transfer elsewhere.

Jones tweeted on Saturday afternoon:

Following the game, Adam Grosbard stated:

The fact that Larry Brown started Ryan Manuel against TCU may have suggested that Jones would be coming off of the bench if he was to dress for the game.

Four newcomers played major minutes against TCU. Nic Moore — a transfer point guard from Illinois State — freshman guard Keith Frazier, Junior College center Yanick Moreira, and Villanova transfer Markus Kennedy. There are many new faces in the rotation for SMU, and Jones ostensibly felt he was going to lose minutes.

Jones is a bit of a “tweener” in that he doesn’t have the perimeter shooting ability (19-63 from 3PT for his career) and skills needed for a small forward, and is not quite as long to play power forward. Plus, with the high-level talent that Brown is bringing to Dallas, Jones may feel it is in the best interest for the remainder of his college career to head elsewhere.

Despite that, Jones projected to play an integral role on this year’s SMU team and certainly would have helped them in their hopes of making it to the NCAA Tournament.

He’s a proven commodity, and you can bet college coaches around the country would love to scoop up Jones and retain his services. When he settles in at another school, he will have two years of eligibility remaining.

Puerto Rico Tip Off bracket revealed

AP Photo/Sean Rayford
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The bracket of the 2017 Puerto Rico Tip off was revealed Wednesday, setting up a showdown between a 2016 Final Four participant and the 2016 Big 12 tournament champion.

South Carolina and Iowa State headline the event, which will be played Nov. 16-19, in Fajardo, Puerto Rico.

The Gamecocks are on the top half of the bracket, opening against Illinois State while the Cyclones are on the bottom half, squaring off against Appalachian State.

Boise State vs. UTEP is the other top-half quarterfinal while Tulsa vs. Western Michigan is the other.

The championship game of the Puerto Rico Tip Off on Sunday, Nov. 19.

VIDEO: Michigan State’s Miles Bridges is dunking again

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Just what you wanted to see, a video of former Michigan State star Denzel Valentine throwing an alley-oop off the glass to current Michigan State star Miles Bridges in a Pro-Am in Michigan:

VIDEO: Kentucky’s entry into the #DriveByDunkChallenge

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A day after Grayson Allen threw an alley-oop to Trevon Duval for Duke’s entry into the #DriveByDunkChallenge, Kentucky’s team of freshmen decided to do one of their own:

https://twitter.com/i/web/status/889947577734574085

That would be, in order, Johnny David, Jarrod Vanderbilt, Nick Richards, PJ Washington and Kevin Knox abusing some poor sap’s rim somewhere in Lexington.

But was that better than John Calipari’s attempt?

VIDEOS: Michigan State’s Miles Bridges puts on another show at local summer Pro-Am

(Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
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Watching Michigan State’s Miles Bridges throw down high-level dunks in local summer pro-ams has been a good way to pass the time the last few weeks.

The 6-foot-7 Bridges has been annihilating rims all summer as he had more ridiculous dunks on Tuesday night. Playing with former Michigan State star Denzel Valentine and some of his current Spartans teammates, Bridges had more crowd-pleasing plays to add to his summer reel.

Lansing State Journal reporter James Edwards III has been on the scene for Bridges’ games all summer as he has more dunks from the future lottery pick.

Minnesota keeps in-state three-star 2018 guard Gabe Kalscheur at home

Jon Lopez/Nike
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Minnesota is keeping a big-time shooter at home as Class of 2018 shooting guard Gabe Kalscheur pledged to the Golden Gophers on Tuesday.

The 6-foot-4 Kalscheur is the third in-state prospect to pledge to head coach Richard Pitino in the Class of 2018 as he joins three-star forward Jarvis Thomas and four-star big man Daniel Oturu. The three-star Kalscheur gives Minnesota a valuable floor spacer and a winner as he’s a three-time state champion at DeLaSalle. All three of these commitments also played together with Howard Pulley in the Nike EYBL.

During this spring and summer in the Nike EYBL, Kalscheur averaged 14.9 points and shot 39 percent from three-point range as he made 61 treys in 21 games.

Pitino has certainly done a nice job of keeping local players home as he’s hoping that trend continues with upcoming in-state five-star prospects like 2018 point guard Tre Jones and 2019 forward Matthew Hurt. The Golden Gophers will have to win national recruiting battles to keep those guys home, but they’ve done a nice job of getting the other guys that they need to keep home.