Chicken Knowles and the “Bring Chicken to the Bucket” Movement: A Timeline (Card Chronicle)
On Thursday night Houston visits the KFC Yum! Center to take on No. 18 Louisville, and the game is a special one for some Louisville fans. Why? Houston freshman forward Chicken Knowles will be on the floor, and back in 2011 he was the focus of a campaign of sorts to get him in a Louisville uniform. The “Bring Chicken to the Bucket” campaign comes to its rightful conclusion on Thursday, even if Knowles may not be a Cardinal.
The best college venues for NBA teams to scout games (Draft Express)
After giving this topic some publicity last week following the game between No. 1 Arizona and UCLA, with NBA scouts and executives in attendance none too thrilled with the way they were treated at Pauley Pavilion. Jonathan Givony of Draft Express gave a rundown of some of the best (and worst) venues for NBA decision-makers to scout college players.
When is it OK to storm the court in college basketball (Indianapolis Star)
With the decision of Indiana students to rush the floor after the Hoosiers beat No. 3 Wisconsin on Tuesday night, a few used the opportunity to climb up on their proverbial soapbox to discuss when such an event should occur. What are the “rules?” Should there even be “rules” when it comes to storming the court?
When Rowe became your coach, it was for life (Providence Journal)
If you want to stump the average college basketball fan, ask them who the head coach at UConn was before Jim Calhoun was hired in 1986. The answer is Dee Rowe, who just turned 85 years old and impacted the lives of many players he coached at various stops. One of those players was Providence Journal columnist Bill Reynolds, who played for Rowe at Worcester Academy.
Buffs preach cohesiveness on the court (Daily Camera)
No. 21 Colorado head coach Tad Boyle and his staff have preached cohesiveness all season long, and the results have been positive for the Buffaloes. And with Spencer Dinwiddie done for the season with a torn ACL and reserve guard Tre’Shaun Fletcher out 6-8 weeks, it’s even more important for the Buffaloes to heed those teachings with No. 25 UCLA visiting Boulder on Thursday night.
IPFW senior proving invaluable on, off of the court (Fort Wayne News-Sentinel)
IPFW senior guard Pierre Bland has been a valuable contributor for IPFW this season, leading the way in regards to both his production and his leadership qualities. With this being the case, Bland’s been a player held in high esteem by coaches and teammates alike.
Chemistry, maturity carrying top-ranked Cats into rivalry game (Arizona Daily Star)
While No. 1 Arizona is currently undefeated Sean Miller’s team hasn’t allowed the chatter to lead to overconfidence, and that’s key entering their game against in-state rival Arizona State on Thursday night. Two of the reasons why the Wildcats sit atop the polls and have yet to lose a game: good team chemistry, and players who have the maturity needed to properly handle the pressure that comes with a lofty ranking.
After over 20 inches of rain fell over three days and over 60,000 homes were damaged in southeastern Louisiana, New Orleans coach Mark Slessinger called his acquaintance, John Derenbecker, in the area to check in. Derenbecker and his family were fine, Slessinger learned, but many in the area were not.
“I told (Derenbecker) to figure out who needed the help the most,” Slessinger told the New Orleans Times-Picayune, “that I had my whole crew who could come help out on Saturday and Sunday.”
That led Slessinger and his team to the home of an elderly couple, Elbert and Ione Norred, whose house was ravaged by over four feet of flood water. The Privateers helped slog out debris, cut away wet insulation and whatever else needed removing from the soaked home.
“I appreciate everything you have done,” Ione Elbert told the Privateers. “Nobody knows how long it would have taken us to have done this.”
The Red Cross estimates that the relief effort for the flooding could cost upwards of $30 million in the region. To make a donation to the organization call 1-800-RED CROSS.
UNO’s baseball team also got in on the aid effort, heading to Baton Rouge over the weekend.
“We are proud to see our student-athletes, coaches and staff serve our fellow Louisianians in their time of need,” UNO Director of Athletics Derek Morel said in a statement. “The men and women of our program understand the importance of serving others and using our resources to help those in less-fortunate situations. We will continue to play for neighbors.”
Rutgers land 7-foot grad transfer from UNC Wilmington
Rutgers landed a commitment from seven-footer C.J. Gettys on Monday night.
Gettys is a graduate transfer from UNC-Wilmington, where he averaged 5.3 points, 5.1 boards and 1.4 blocks for a team that reached the NCAA tournament. Gettys is a slow-footed back-to-the-basket player, however, and that didn’t exactly fit with the way that UNCW head coach Kevin Keatts likes to play; think Shaka Smart’s VCU teams.
So Gettys opted for Rutgers, picking the Scarlet Knights over Dayton, Purdue and Chattanooga.
He is the fifth member of new head coach Steve Pikiell’s first recruiting class.
A Philadelphia basketball legend and a former National Player of the Year passed away on Monday night.
Michael Brooks, a 6-foot-7 forward who was named the NABC National Player of the Year in 1980, died in Switzerland on Monday night due to a massive stroke, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.
He was just 58 years old.
Brooks finished his career with 2,628 points and 1,372 rebounds. He never averaged less than 20 points in his four seasons in college. (Think about that for a second.) He was the No. 9 pick in the 1980 NBA Draft and averaged double-figures for four years before season-ending knee injuries sent him to Europe to play. Brooks was also named the captain of the 1980 Olympic team that missed out on the Moscow games due to the USA’s boycott.
Brooks, according to the Inquirer, had aplastic anemia, which required him to receive a bone marrow transplant last week. His body rejected the marrow, which resulted in the strokes that ended his life.
UCLA, who will be the most interesting team in all of college basketball this season, played their first game of an Australian tour on Tuesday morning, and they won in pretty impressive fashion.
The Bruins had triple digits on the board early in the fourth quarter, eventually beating a club in Sydney by the score of 123-76. For comparison’s sake, Washington and potential No. 1 pick Markelle Fultz beat the same team 101-80 a couple of weeks ago, so the win and the margin of victory is somewhat impressive.
Also worth noting: None of UCLA’s freshmen started. Steve Alford rolled with Aaron Holiday, Bryce Alford and Isaac Hamilton on the perimeter — Holiday and Hamilton combined for 27 points, 18 assists and 11 boards while Alford had 17 points on just 10 shots — with G.G. Golomon and Thomas Welsh up front.
But the noteworthy performances here were from the McDonald’s All-Americans that Steve Alford brought into the program. In his first game in the blue and gold, Lonzo Ball, a potential top ten pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, was just OK. He finished with nine points and four assists while shooting 3-for-9 from the floor. Leaf, however, was terrific, as he led the team with 21 points to go along with nine boards and three assists.
The first exhibition game is hardly a great way to predict how a season is going to play out, but given the pressure and expectations currently surrounding the program, everything the Bruins do this season is going to be scrutinized.