Former UNLV guard Deville Smith has found a new home as the 6-foot guard will play his final year at Tennessee-Martin. Smith announced his move on Twitter but the story was first reported by CBSSports.com’s Jon Rothstein.
Smith will follow former UNLV associate head coach Heath Schroyer, who is now the first-year head coach for the Skyhawks. According to Rothstein, Smith will attempt to file a waiver with the NCAA in the hopes of playing this season. The guard only has one year of eligibility remaining.
After averaging 9.7 points and 2.7 assists per game at UNLV, Smith will join returnees Dee Oldham and Marshun Newell in the Tennessee-Martin back court.
While the Skyhawks struggled to an 8-23 mark in 2013-14, if Smith is allowed to play if would give Tennessee-Martin a very good back court to work with in the Ohio Valley Conference.
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.