Steve Masiello

The Secondary Break: Monday’s Links

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Unbreakable (BU Today) 
Boston University freshman Connor Lenahan is incredibly busy, announcing games for three different teams on campus while also running his own sports blog. Add to this the full course load that college students have to navigate, and there’s a lot on his plate. Lenahan, who has a congenital bone disease, has proven to be an inspiration to those he comes in contact with on campus.  

An inside look at how Coach Masiello leads the Jaspers squad (New York Post) 
The Manhattan Jaspers capped their regular season with a 68-63 win over Canisius on Sunday afternoon, earning the two-seed in next weekend’s MAAC tournament as a result. Leading the way is head coach Steve Masiello, who’s done an excellent job in turning around a program that was reeling at the time of his hire. How does he do it? This story follows Masiello in the hours leading up to Manhattan’s win at Monmouth on February 20. 

You made your bed Calipari, now lie in it (Yahoo! Sports) 
With No. 17 Kentucky losing games to Arkansas and South Carolina last week, the Wildcats aren’t playing their best basketball with the NCAA tournament rapidly approaching. For some the issue is the number of “one-and-done” players bring brought into the program by head coach John Calipari, and their struggles are seen as an indictment of his recruiting. 

Clashes between fans and players draw greater scrutiny (New York Times) 
With the clash between New Mexico State players and some Utah Valley fans on Thursday night, the issue of court-storming has become a national topic in college basketball. Add to this Marcus Smart pushing a fan last month, and the issue of fans and players interacting is one administrators have to address in the very near future. 

Gregarious band member is a McKale Center staple (Arizona Daily Star) 
No. 3 Arizona has more than enough talent on the floor to captivate its fan base, as evidenced by its lofty ranking and outright Pac-12 championship. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t action in the stands as well, with band member Jordan Ingram’s dance moves gaining both local and national attention beginning with last season’s NCAA tournament. 

Markel Brown will try to treat Senior Night like just another day (The Oklahoman) 
Senior Night is an emotional affair for players, as they’ll be playing in front of the home folks for the final time in their college career. But there’s also the need to remain focused on the task at hand, something that becomes even more important for teams looking to play their way into the NCAA tournament. That’s the spot Oklahoma State’s currently in, and Markel Brown aims to treat the game like it’s any other. 

Inconsistency part of growing up for N.C. State (Raleigh News & Observer) 
Mark Gottfried’s N.C. State Wolfpack suffered a difficult loss on Saturday, dropping an 85-70 decision at home to Miami. That result could be the final nail in the coffin in regards to the Wolfpack’s at-large hopes, and inconsistency has been an issue for this young group for much of the season. And that hasn’t come as a surprise tot he head coach. 

Redshirt guard Zak Showalter role player by design (Wisconsin State Journal) 
One of the more overlooked aspects of successful teams is the impact that scout teams have. Those players, who are either walk-ons or redshirts, are entrusted with the task of preparing their teammates for games by emulating the skill sets and strategies of the upcoming opponent and a good job can lead to victory. One such player is Wisconsin guard Zak Showalter, who’s redshirting this season and has played the role of some of the Big Ten’s best guards. 

Cal and San Diego State set three-game series

LAS VEGAS, NV - MARCH 10:  Jarmal Reid #32 of the Oregon State Beavers tries to steal the ball from Ivan Rabb #1 of the California Golden Bears during a quarterfinal game of the Pac-12 Basketball Tournament at MGM Grand Garden Arena on March 10, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. California won 76-68.  (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
(Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
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Cal and San Diego State played last season in the Las Vegas Invitational and decided to play more often.

According to multiple reports, the two teams will play each other the next three seasons, starting with a neutral-court matchup in Sacramento on Nov. 21. The game in Sacramento will be unique in a couple of ways, as it will be the first college basketball game in the Sacramento Kings’ brand-new home arena. It will also be Cal’s first game in Sacramento since 1947.

After the Sacramento game during the 2016-17 season, San Diego State will host the Golden Bears the next season and Cal will host the Aztecs the following year to close out the three-game deal.

With both Cal and San Diego State returning plenty of talent from last season, this season’s contest should be one of the more intriguing non-conference games between schools out west and it should be fun for the players as they get to take the floor in a new NBA arena.

Report: Creighton’s Zach Hanson to miss a few months following knee surgery

OMAHA, NE - MARCH 3: Zach Hanson #40 of the Creighton Bluejays fights for position with Daniel Ochefu #23 of the Villanova Wildcats  during their game at CenturyLink Center March 3, 2015 in Omaha, Nebraska.   (Photo by Eric Francis/Getty Images)
(Eric Francis/Getty Images)
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Creighton will be without a key big man for the start of practice as senior Zach Hanson will be out after having knee surgery.

According to a report from Marjie Ducey of the Omaha World-Herald, the 6-foot-9 Hanson will likely be out for eight to 12 weeks. Creighton head coach Greg McDermott told Ducey that Hanson will hopefully be available when Creighton opens its regular season in November.

As a junior, Hanson was a key rotation big man for the Bluejays as he put up 6.8 points and 3.1 rebounds per game, making one start on the season. As McDermott noted in Ducey’s story, he’s not concerned about Hanson missing practice time from a learning curve standpoint but he is a bit worried about his conditioning. Before the knee surgery, Hanson was also nursing some ankle injuries that he was dealing with during the season, so he hasn’t had a great chance to get in proper condition.

This loss will definitely hurt Creighton as they have a ton of backcourt pieces for next season, but not as many in the front court. Hanson’s an experienced player who will help once he returns but it will something worth monitoring to see what kind of condition he’s in during the early season.

VIDEO: Mixtape of the Under Armour Association

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Now that summer basketball is nearly finished, a lot of good mixtapes are beginning to pop up from this spring and summer’s action.

Ball is Life just dropped some highlights from all of the Under Armour Association events from this spring and summer in one mixtape and it’s loaded with high-level players making tremendous plays.

Some of the top Class of 2017 prospects included in the video include Trevon Duval, Kris Wilkes, Ira Lee, M.J. Walker and North Carolina commit Jalek Felton.

Judge to review surveillance video in Appling gun case

NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 30:  Keith Appling #11 of the Michigan State Spartans reacts against the Connecticut Huskies during the East Regional Final of the 2014 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at Madison Square Garden on March 30, 2014 in New York City.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
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DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) A Michigan judge will review surveillance footage from the night former Michigan State basketball player Keith Appling was arrested outside a strip club on weapons and drug charges.

Appling’s defense attorney presented the footage at Friday’s preliminary examination. It includes security videos from the Pantheon Club parking lot and video from police dashboard cameras.

The hearing was adjourned until Aug. 5 to allow Judge William Hultgren time to review the footage.

The 24-year-old Appling played for the Spartans from 2010-2014 and had two 10-day contracts with the Orlando Magic this season.

He was arrested in May after two guns and suspected marijuana were found in a vehicle he was in.

Appling also faces a trial in Detroit where he was charged in June with carrying a concealed weapon.

Arkansas hoping for more backcourt depth and stronger press in 2016-17

NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 27: Dusty Hannahs #3 of the Arkansas Razorbacks drives to the basket against Michael Humphrey #10 of the Stanford Cardinal  at Barclays Center on November 27, 2015 in Brooklyn borough of New York City.  (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
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Arkansas is coming off of a disappointing 16-16 season in which they missed the postseason.

The Razorbacks lost two key guards in Anthlon Bell and Jabril Durham — who both exhausted their eligibility — but they’re hoping a couple of additions will bolster the depth of their backcourt and make their trademark press stronger.

In a story from Tom Murphy of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, the Razorbacks are excited about the possibilities of their new backcourt.

Although Arkansas lost two talented seniors and a transfer in Jimmy Whitt, they return Dusty Hannahs, Manny Watkins and Anton Beard while also getting two of the best junior college guards in the country. Jaylen Barford and Daryl Macon come in highly touted for next season and both junior college guards garnered a lot of praise from their play last season.

With Arkansas also bringing in some freshman guards like C.J. Jones and RJ Glasper, head coach Mike Anderson is hoping to have enough bodies to play fast and use his press. The team appears to be optimistic as well.

“I think we’ll have a lot more toughness at the guard position, and depth,” Watkins said to Murphy. “We’ve got a lot of guys. When we’re pressing and stuff, we’ve got bodies we can bring in.”

Arkansas also returns an SEC Player of the Year candidate in big man Moses Kingsley and they could be an intriguing team to track this season if Barford and Macon are as good as advertised. They’ll certainly have more bodies to throw at opposing guards and that should help Arkansas play faster than they did last season.