Facing a postseason ban in both football and men’s basketball due to low APR scores, Florida A&M will take a second look over each sport’s score in an attempt to reverse the NCAA’s postseason ban, according to a report from St. Clair Murraine of the Tallahassee Democrat.
New Rattlers head coach Byron Samuels has already lost players to transfer because of the APR ruling and the coach is also facing an uphill battle bringing in new recruits thanks to the postseason ban.
Florida A&M athletic director Kellen Winslow has already helped the school launch an appeal before the postseason sanctions were announced in April.
“We are going to look at every detail, turn every rock and try to find every point we possibly can,” Winslow said to the Tallahassee Democrat. “Will the adjustments be enough to move the needle? We don’t know, but we have to look at it.”
So why the second attempt from the school? The Rattlers had a similar APR situation last season with their volleyball program and the NCAA eventually reversed a verdict in the school’s favor.
Now, the football and men’s basketball program will wait it out and see if either program can re-gain postseason eligibility.
The men’s basketball program is already facing a tough task next season as the team graduated six seniors, including leading scorers Jamie Adams (17.2 ppg) and Reggie Lewis (12.7 ppg).
Without the ability to play in the postseason, Florida A&M has zero recruiting leverage on its MEAC counterparts, since so many prospective student-athletes want to play in postseason tournaments. This is something to keep an eye on this summer.
Not only is Wyoming senior guard Josh Adams the lone returning starter from a team that won the Mountain West tournament last season, but he’s also one of college basketball’s best dunkers. And if anyone may have forgotten about his jumping ability, Adams put it on display Saturday during the Cowboys’ win over Montana State.
After splitting two Montana State players at the top of the key Adams attacked the basket, dunking with two hands over a late-arriving help-side defender. If you’re going to rotate over, have to do it quicker than that.
Video credit: Wyoming Athletics
Even with the coaching change from Fred Hoiberg to Steve Prohm, No. 4 Iowa State remains one of the nation’s best offensive teams. Given their skills on that end of the floor many teams find it tough to go score for score with the Cyclones, and that’s what happened to Illinois in Iowa State’s 84-73 win in the Emerald Coast Classic title game.
Georges Niang scored 23 points and grabbed eight rebounds, with Monté Morris adding 20, nine rebounds and six assists and Abdel Nader 18 points as the Cyclones moved to 5-0 on the season. The three-pointers weren’t falling in the second half, as Iowa State shot 0-f0r-12, but they shot 19-for-24 inside of the arc to pull away from a team that lost big man Mike Thorne Jr. late in the first half to a left knee injury.
Illinois’ loss of size in the paint opened things up offensively for Iowa State, and the Cyclones took advantage. But where this group grabbed control of the game was on the defensive end of the floor, and that will be the key for a team with Big 12 and national title aspirations.
Nader took on the responsibility of defending Illinois’ Malcolm Hill (20 points) in the second half and did a solid job of keeping the junior wing in check, with that serving as the spark to a 12-2 run that put the game away. There’s no denying that the Cyclones can put points on the board; most of the talent from last season is back and the productivity on that end of the floor hasn’t changed as a result. Niang’s one of the nation’s best forwards, and both Morris (who now ranks among the country’s best point guards) and Nader have taken significant strides in their respective games.
Iowa State will add Deonte Burton in December, giving them another option to call upon. Front court depth is a bit of a concern, as Iowa State can ill afford to lose a Niang or Jameel McKay, but there’s enough on the roster to compensate for that and force mismatches in other areas.
But the biggest question for this group is how effective they can become at stringing together stops. Illinois certainly had its moments in both halves Saturday night, but Iowa State also showed during the game’s decisive stretch that they can step up defensively. The key now is to do so consistently, and if that occurs the Cyclones can be a threat both within the Big 12 and nationally.