Lute Olson says new rules are ‘ridiculous’


Former Arizona head coach and Hall of Famer Lute Olson has formally joined the group of coaches who have expressed their displeasure with the new rule changes this season in college basketball.

Hand-checking rules were changed this season to allow more player movement, which in return has increased scoring something that was down from a season ago. Although John Adams, the NCAA’s men’s basketball national officiating coordinator, told USA Today he believes the rules help the game become more graceful, Olson told Eric Prisbell that it hurts the rhythm of the games for teams.

“Frankly, I really don’t like it that much,” Olson said. “I think it takes teams out of their rhythm,” Olson told USA Today by phone. “It seems like there is a whistle stopping play so many times. I can understand if they are arm-barring a kid and keeping him from where he wants to go.

“I just hope we can get back to some common sense and let the kids play more and let the fans enjoy the game,” Olson later added. “For the kids, it has to be frustrating, you have your hands straight up in the air and if the offensive player jumps into you, 90 percent of the time I think it is going to be called a block. I don’t think it’s good for the game, frankly.”

A week ago, Tom Izzo, head coach of the nation’s top-ranked team, voiced his opinion on the rule changes following a win against Oklahoma in the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic in Brooklyn.

It’s three days into the second month of the season and this ongoing battle between coaches — both current and former — and the rule changes is only heating up.

NEW PODCAST: Recapping Feast Week

Kris Dunn
AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill
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We talk about a lot of stuff of the podcast today, mainly because a lot of stuff happened since we last spoke with you all.

For starters, we need to discuss the ‘realness’ of Syracuse and Xavier. Are they both truly top 15 teams, or do they just have top 15 resumes? We also dive into Chris Mack’s epic troll-job of Dayton at the Advocare Invitational final.

Other topics we touched on: Whether or not Scott is ever going to apologize to Wayne Selden, Wichita State’s tournament hopes, Texas A&M and whether we’d take Ben Simmons, Kris Dunn or Denzel Valentine today.

As always, you can subscribe to the podcast in iTunes right here. It’s the quickest way to get access on your cell phone or tablet.


AP Poll: Syracuse, Xavier big winners in college basketball rankings

(Brad Horrigan/The Courant via AP)
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The new college basketball AP Poll is out, and it shouldn’t be much of a surprise to you that Syracuse and Xavier are the big winners.

The Orange steamrolled through a good Battle 4 Atlantis field, while Xavier capped a dominating performance in the Advocare Invitational with a 29-point win over Dayton. It should be no surprise that they are where they are.

[MORE RANKINGS: NBCSports.com top 25 | Coaches Poll]

It is a bit surprising, however, that both Texas A&M and Providence made it into the polls with a loss this week. They both deserve to be there, I just wasn’t sure they were both going to be.

Anyway, here is the full poll:

1. Kentucky (59 first place votes)
2. Maryland (4)
3. Michigan State (2)
4. Kansas
5. Iowa State
6. Oklahoma
7. Duke
8. Villanova
9. North Carolina
10. Virginia
11. Purdue
12. Xavier
13. Gonzaga
14. Syracuse
15. Oregon
16. Vanderbilt
17. Cincinnati
18. Texas A&M
19. Arizona
20. West Virginia
21. Miami
22. SMU
23. Providence
24. Louisville
25. Baylor

NEW THIS WEEK: Syracuse, West Virginia, SMU, Providence, Louisville

DROPPED OUT: Indiana, Cal, UConn, LSU, Wichita State