Louisville forward Montrezl Harrell (24) dunks against Cincinnati in the second half of an NCAA college basketball game, Saturday, Feb. 22, 2014, in Cincinnati. Harrell led Louisville to a 58-57 win with 21 points and 10 rebounds. (AP Photo/Al Behrman)
You should know the name Marcus Keene by now.
He’s the nation’s leading scorer, the only guy in the country averaging better than 30 points this season; at just 5-foot-9, he’s averaging 31.4 points, 5.1 assists and 4.6 boards. On Tuesday night, Keene went for 40 points. He was in such a zone, he felt the need to make this little pirouette before banging home a three.
I mean, just check this out:
Here’s what makes that shot so crazy: this game wasn’t close to over!
Central Michigan was up by six points with more than two minutes left, and Keene not only buried that shot, he actually shot it.
One of the most mercurial college coaching careers of recent years is coming to a close.
Billy Gillispie, who rose in the profession to helming Kentucky and then fell to the junior college ranks, is retiring amid health concerns, he told the Dallas Morning News.
“No one’s ever enjoyed coaching more than I have, I promise, and no one’s ever been luckier in the coaching profession than I have,” Gillispie told the newspaper in a text message. “What a wonderful career!
“I’ve been very sick with blood pressure issues since the summer, but I’ve tried to fight it out. I got a report Monday that told me if I didn’t address this blood pressure situation immediately, irreversible, bad things were very likely to happen here relatively soon and my long-term health could be compromised.
“Timing isn’t great, but I’ve decided to do what I was told and try to return to healthy ASAP.
“I’ve had a wonderful career and in the last two years some of the best days I’ve ever experienced as a coach. I hate leaving this team because they are really coming around, but they understood me being sick. That’s the worst part of it, not coaching.”
After lengthy stints as an assistant, Gillispie got his first head coaching job at UTEP in 2002 and turned the Miners into an NCAA tournament team by his second season, which paved the way for his exit to Texas A&M and the Big 12. He won 20-plus games in all three of his seasons with the Aggies and brought them to back-to-back NCAA tournaments, spending much of the 2006-07 season ranked in the top-10.
Gillispie then took over for one of the most storied programs in the history of the sport when Tubby Smith bolted for Minnesota, but he would last just two seasons in Lexington before being fired after missing the 2009 NCAA tournament.
Two years later he resurfaced at Texas Tech, but didn’t make it to a second season in Lubbock after allegations of player mistreatment.
He’s spent the last year-and-half at Ranger College in Texas.
Yet another one of the members of the heralded 2015 Ohio State recruiting class won’t be playing at his second choice of school either.
Mickey Mitchell will transfer to Arizona State after initially planning on going to UC-Santa Barbara upon his exit from the Buckeyes, according to Scout.
Thad Matta lost four players from that top-10 five-man recruiting class with Austin Grandstaff, Daniel Giddens and A.J. Harris all also deciding to leave Columbus.
Grandstaff also did not play at his first choice after Ohio State, deciding to ultimately depart Oklahoma for DePaul after heading to Norman from OSU.
Mitchell, once a four-star recruit, appeared in 23 games for the Buckeyes as a freshman, averaging 2 points and 2.8 rebounds per game. He is expected to enroll at Arizona State in time for the next semester and will be eligible at the semester break next year for the Sun Devils.
Utah coach Larry Krystkowiak had surgery this spring to remove his thyroid after cancer was discovered in it, he revealed Monday during his coach’s radio show, according to the Deseret News.
“I had my thyroid taken out this spring,” Krystkowiak said. “Found some cancer in it.”
Krystkowiak made light of the situation, mentioning it contributed to some weight game.
“It’s OK if I skip a meal from time to time,” he said. “I gotta watch the midsection. That’s one of the byproducts of not having a thyroid. I guess you get a little chunky.”
Krystkowiak, who has been at Utah since 2011, and the Utes are currently 6-1 with their lone loss coming to Butler. They travel to face Xavier on Saturday.
NEW YORK — A totally forgettable Arizona State performance in the Jimmy V Classic on Tuesday night led to some truly unforgettable comments from head coach Bobby Hurley.
Hurley, who has a reputation for having something of a temper, teed off on his team in the press conference after the game, criticizing them as harshly as you’ll ever see a coach do in public. He called them “embarrassing” and the performance “disturbing”.
“I thought we competed for about eight minutes out of 40,” Hurley said. The Sun Devils were down 47-21 at the half, by as many as 42 points in the second half and eventually lost 97-64 to a Purdue team that scored 19 first half points against Louisville exactly a week ago. “It’s unfortunate that our team didn’t even come close to the energy that Jimmy V had in his life and his passion. We had no passion for playing. We did a disservice to this game and this event and what he represented.”
It’s not often that you see a coach publicly ridicule players like that. Humiliation isn’t always the best motivating tactic. Oftentimes, it’s the easiest way to lose a locker room.
Hurley wasn’t done.
“For a city that’s a blue-collar city and an arena that has so much tradition and so many good players that have played on this court — to look like that, it was embarrassing,” he said. “And then the cause, such a great cause that we’re playing for tonight. Did my players play as hard as the people that are going through what they go through in cancer, as families go through in their personal situations? I don’t think so.”
Oh, there’s more.
“That was really disturbing, how we competed,” Hurley said. “It’s not a reflection of my personality or the teams I’ve coached in the past, so we have to make some changes.”
For better or worse, this is the second time in Hurley’s tenure with Arizona State that he’s made national headlines. Last season, he went viral during a theatrical ejection in an Arizona State loss against in-state rival Arizona.
Hurley is trying to make Arizona State relevant, which is why he’s scheduling games against anyone and everyone in an effort to get his brand on national television.
And he’s succeeded in a sense.
After this rant, you’ll see his name on every sports website this morning.
I’m not so sure that’s the best way to build recruiting momentum.