Texas A&M v Kentucky

Alex Poythress continues his hot streak as No. 14 Kentucky outlasts Texas A&M

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It wasn’t always pretty and it wasn’t always exciting, but No. 14 Kentucky did the job they were supposed to do against Texas A&M on a snowy Tuesday night, dispatching the Aggies, 68-51.

Billy Kennedy entered the night with a game-plan: to play the game at a snail’s pace, trying to keep the score in the 50s or 60s. He succeeded, too, which is why it’s tough to take too much out of this game.

There were a couple of noteworthy performances, however.

Alex Poythress looks like he might finally be figuring it out. On Tuesday night, he had a season-high 16 points, 14 of which came in the second half, while adding five boards and getting to the free throw line nine times. In his last five games, 10.6 points, 4.4 boards and 2.0 blocks in just under 24 minutes per game. He’s making hustle plays, getting to the offensive glass, playing defense. We’ve been saying it for a long time that the Wildcats need a glue-guy, someone to do the dirty work. Poythress looks like he could end up being that guy.

On the other hand, Willie Cauley-Stein was a no-show for the third straight game. He’s scored three points and has more fouls (11) than rebounds (10). He’s blocked two shots, which doubles the number of field goals that he’s made during that time. The good news? Dakari Johnson has played well in Cauley-Stein’s, well, absence. On Tuesday, he finished with six points, seven boards and three blocks.

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.