Having served as an assistant at USC Upstate since 2009, Kyle Perry has played an important role in the Spartans’ transition to the Division I level. On Tuesday he was rewarded with a promotion by head coach Eddie Payne, with Perry now being the program’s associate head coach.
“Coach Perry has demonstrated proficiency and excellence in so many difference phases of our program, and I thought it was appropriate to make him Associate Head Coach,” Payne said in the release announcing the move. “He has functioned in that role already, and I think the title speaks to what he does for our program and how he has impacted our program.”
Among the players Perry has been credited with helping the program land was forward Torrey Craig, who wrapped up a storied four-year career at USC Upstate this past spring. Craig left the school ranked in the top five in career points (second), rebounds (first) and blocked shots (fifth).
USC Upstate finished the 2013-14 season with a 19-15 record (11-7 Big South), and the Spartans reached the postseason (CIT) for the second time in the last three years. The Spartans’ season came to an end in the first round, as they fell 63-60 to Towson.
Illinois suffered another blow in what has already turned out to be a brutal season.
Mike Thorne is expected to miss the rest of the season after tearing his meniscus. He reportedly underwent surgery on Monday to repair the injury.
Thorne, a transfer from Charlotte, was starting at center for the Illini and doing a good job of it as well. He was averaging 13.4 points and 8.4 boards, although Illinois has started off the season 3-4.
The reason for that slow start has mainly been those injuries. Tracy Abrams is already out for the season after tearing his achilles, and the Illini training room looked like a M.A.S.H. unit. Kendrick Nunn just returned two games ago from surgery to repair a torn thumb ligament. LeRon Black is still getting back to speed after offseason knee surgery. Jaylon Tate is back after dislocating a finger. Jalen Coleman-Lands was slowed by a stress fracture.
John Groce entered this season on the hot seat, and dealing with all of these injuries certainly isn’t helping his cause.
We talk about a lot of stuff of the podcast today, mainly because a lot of stuff happened since we last spoke with you all.
For starters, we need to discuss the ‘realness’ of Syracuse and Xavier. Are they both truly top 15 teams, or do they just have top 15 resumes? We also dive into Chris Mack’s epic troll-job of Dayton at the Advocare Invitational final.
Other topics we touched on: Whether or not Scott is ever going to apologize to Wayne Selden, Wichita State’s tournament hopes, Texas A&M and whether we’d take Ben Simmons, Kris Dunn or Denzel Valentine today.
As always, you can subscribe to the podcast in iTunes right here. It’s the quickest way to get access on your cell phone or tablet.