The official Unofficial Rules of Storming the Court

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source: AP

Following Missouri’s come from behind victory against Kansas Saturday night, one of the most indelible images was of a pair of Tiger players giving students the universal sign for “Do Not Pass Go”.

They weren’t telling them to stop celebrating, but rather encourage them not to storm the court.

Because as exhilarating as that may be, it would behoove Mizzou players and fans from getting too excited about defeating Kansas, their hated rival. Losing to a team that appears to believe they were going to win stings a bit more than losing to a team that can’t control themselves after securing a big “W”.

Even though their head was in the right place, I’m still a bit reluctant to praise Denmon’s and English’s work in halting the court storm. In the end, the onus falls on the students to have enough education on when and when not to rush.

Just as players must be aware of time and score, undergrads must be cognizant of context.

Now I know there have been plenty of attempts at etching the rules of court storming in stone. There’s even a few excellent blogs whose namesake is of the time-honored tradition. But perhaps we can get a bit more scientific with such an important document, provide detail where there once was gray area, and let an unofficial article of bylaws live as long as the Internet.

Here are our defined rules for Storming a College Basketball Court, a special act that needs order to preserve its sanctity.

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I. You cannot storm the court if you are Duke, Kansas, Kentucky or North Carolina. These four pillars of college basketball are the four winningest programs in the history Division I, and the only programs with a winning percentage of .700 or higher with at least 1500 Division I victories. This rule will remain firmly in place until a program’s all-time winning percentage falls below .650. Congratulations, you have renounced the right to court storm.

II. You can storm the court if you defeat your opponent on a buzzer-beating half-court shot, and the opponent is nationally ranked. Your current standing in the pecking order is irrelevant in this situation.

III. You cannot storm the court if both you and your opponent are not nationally ranked. A provision applies to the Ivy League, which can allow a court storming if the winning team clinches a trip to the NCAA Tournament on their home court, and they have not won the league in five or more years or the game ends on a buzzer beater.

IV. You can storm the court if you defeat your primary rival in any of the following ways:

1.  A buzzer beating shot against your primary rival when said rival is ranked ahead of you. If neither team is ranked, see rule III.

2.  By any margin and your primary rival is:

  • Ranked #1 in the country.
  • Ranked 15 or more spots ahead of you, assuming both teams are nationally ranked.
  • Relinquishes a 15 point lead in the final 15 minutes of play.
  • Relinquishes a 20 point lead at any point in the game.

V. You cannot storm the court if you are a non-BCS school that defeats a BCS school with a .500 or below winning percentage at any point in the season.

VI. You can storm the court if you are a non-BCS school that is not nationally ranked, and defeat a BCS school that is nationally ranked in the top 15 or a non-BCS school ranked in the top 10.

VII. You cannot storm the court if you began the season ranked in the top 15, fall out of the top 25 and then defeat a ranked team.

VIII. You can storm the court if you defeat an undefeated team by any margin, and that undefeated team has completed at least 50 percent of their schedule and is ranked ahead of you.

IX. You cannot storm the court if you boast an all-time winning percentage of more than .500 against your opponent and have faced that team at least once a season for the past 15 years.

X. You can storm the court if you are drunk, and/or if the co-ed standing next to you in the student section convinces you to storm the court under the assumption that you and said co-ed will sleep in the same bed together following the game. It would only make sense.

Nick Fasulo is the manager of Searching for Billy Edelin. He has never successfully stormed a court. Follow him on Twitter @billyedelinSBN.

Kentucky moves scrimmage to Eastern Kentucky for flood relief

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LEXINGTON, Ky. — Kentucky will play its annual Blue-White men’s basketball scrimmage in Eastern Kentucky to benefit victims of the devastating summer floods.

The school announced that the Oct. 22 event at Appalachian Wireless Arena in Pikeville will feature a pregame Fan Fest. Ticket proceeds will go through Team Eastern Kentucky Flood Relief.

Wildcat players will also participate in a community service activity with local organizations in the relief effort.

Kentucky coach John Calipari said the team was excited to play for Eastern Kentucky fans and added, “We hope we can provide a temporary escape with basketball and community engagement.”

The scrimmage traditionally is held at Rupp Arena. It will occur eight days after its Big Blue Madness public workout at Rupp.

Kentucky’s Tionna Herron recovering from open-heart surgery

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LEXINGTON, Ky. — Kentucky coach Kyra Elzy says freshman Tionna Herron is recovering from open-heart surgery to correct a structural abnormality.

The 6-foot-4 post player learned of her condition after arriving at school in June and received other opinions before surgery was recommended. Senior trainer Courtney Jones said in a release that Herron underwent surgery Aug. 24 at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston and is recovering at home in DeSoto, Texas.

Elzy said Herron “is the definition of a warrior” and all are grateful to be on the other side of the player’s surgery. Herron is expected back on campus early next month and will continue rehabilitation until she’s cleared to return to normal activity.

“Her will and determination to eventually return to the court is inspiring, and it’s that `game-on’ attitude that is what makes her such a perfect fit in our program,” Elzy said in a release. “We are so thrilled for Tionna’s return to our locker room; it’s not the same without our full team together.”

Herron committed to Kentucky during last fall’s early signing period, rated as a four-star prospect and a top-70 player in last year’s class. Kentucky won last year’s Southeastern Conference Tournament and reached the NCAA Tournament’s first round.

Emoni Bates charged with 2 felonies

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SUPERIOR TOWNSHIP, Mich — Emoni Bates, a former basketball prodigy who transferred to Eastern Michigan from Memphis, was charged with two felonies after police found a gun in a car during a traffic stop.

The 18-year-old Bates failed to stop at an intersection Sunday night and a search turned up the weapon, said Derrick Jackson, a spokesman for the Washtenaw County sheriff’s office.

Defense attorney Steve Haney told The Associated Press that the vehicle and the gun didn’t belong to Bates.

“I hope people can reserve judgment and understand there’s a presumption of innocence,” Haney said. “This was not his vehicle. This was not his gun. … We’re still gathering facts, too.”

Bates was charged with carrying a concealed weapon and altering identification marks on a firearm. He was released after his lawyer entered a not guilty plea. Bates’ next court hearing is Oct. 6.

“This is his first brush with the law,” Haney said in court. “He poses no threat or risk to society.”

Less than a month ago, the 6-foot-9 Bates transferred to Eastern Michigan to play for his hometown Eagles. Bates averaged nearly 10 points a game last season as a freshman at Memphis, where he enrolled after reclassifying to skip a year of high school and join the class of 2021.

“We are aware of a situation involving one of our student athletes,” EMU spokesman Greg Steiner said. “We are working to gather more details and will have further comment when more information is available.”

Bates was the first sophomore to win the Gatorade national player of the year award in high school basketball in 2020, beating out Cade Cunningham and Evan Mobley. Detroit drafted Cunningham No. 1 overall last year, two spots before Cleveland took Mobley in the 2021 NBA draft.

Bates committed to playing for Tom Izzo at Michigan State two years ago, later de-committed and signed with Memphis. Bates played in 18 games for the Tigers, who finished 22-11 under Penny Hardaway. Bates missed much of the season with a back injury before appearing in Memphis’ two NCAA Tournament games.

In 2019, as a high school freshman, the slender and skilled guard led Ypsilanti Lincoln to a state title and was named Michigan’s Division 1 Player of the Year by The Associated Press. His sophomore season was cut short by the pandemic and he attended Ypsi Prep Academy as a junior, his final year of high school.

UConn to pay Kevin Ollie another $3.9 million over firing

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STORRS, Conn. — UConn announced Thursday it has agreed to pay former men’s basketball coach Kevin Ollie another $3.9 million to settle discrimination claims surrounding his 2018 firing.

The money is in addition to the more than $11.1 million in back salary Ollie has already been paid after an arbitrator ruled in January that he was improperly fired under the school’s agreement with its professor’s union.

“I am grateful that we were able to reach agreement,” Ollie said in a statement Thursday. “My time at UConn as a student-athlete and coach is something I will always cherish. I am pleased that this matter is now fully and finally resolved.”

Ollie, a former UConn point guard who guided the Huskies to a 127-79 record and the 2014 national championship in six seasons as head coach, was let go after two losing seasons. UConn also stopped paying him under his contract, citing numerous NCAA violations in terminating the deal.

In 2019, the NCAA placed UConn on probation for two years and Ollie was sanctioned individually for violations, which the NCAA found occurred between 2013 and 2018. Ollie’s attorneys, Jacques Parenteau and William Madsen, accused UConn of making false claims to the NCAA for the purpose of firing Ollie “with cause.”

The school had argued that Ollie’s transgressions were serious and that his individual contract superseded those union protections.

Ollie’s lawyers had argued that white coaches, including Hall-of-Famers Jim Calhoun and women’s coach Geno Auriemma, had also committed NCAA violations, without being fired, and indicated they were planning to file a federal civil rights lawsuit.

The school and Ollie said in a joint statement Thursday they were settling “to avoid further costly and protracted litigation.”

Both sides declined to comment further.

Ollie, who faced three years of restrictions from the NCAA on becoming a college basketball coach again, is currently coaching for Overtime Elite, a league that prepares top prospects who are not attending college for the pros.

Dream’s McDonald returning to Arizona to coach under Barnes

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TUCSON, Ariz. — Atlanta Dream guard Aari McDonald is returning to Arizona to work under coach Adia Barnes.

The school announced that McDonald will serve as director of recruiting operations while continuing to fulfill her WNBA commitments. She will oversee all recruiting logistics, assist with on-campus visits, manage recruit information and social media content at Arizona.

McDonald was one of the best players in Arizona history after transferring from Washington as a sophomore. She was an All-American and the Pac-12 player of the year in 2020-21, leading the Wildcats to the national championship game, which they lost to Stanford.

McDonald broke Barnes’ single-season scoring record and had the highest career scoring average in school history before being selected by the Dream with the third overall pick of the 2021 WNBA draft.