Late Night Snacks: Top-ranked Kentucky rolls, Rick Pitino’s Louisville too much for son and Minnesota


GAME OF THE DAY: No. 18 Michigan State 64, Navy 59

In the nightcap of the Quicken Loans Veterans Classic, No. 18 Michigan State needed until the final minute to put away a 64-59 win over the Midshipmen, a team picked to finish last in the Patriot League. Travis Trice went for a career-high 25 points, five rebounds and five assists. Navy lost Worth Smith during the game with a reported dislocated knee.

OTHER GAME OF THE DAY: High Point 100, CSU Bakersfield 99 (4OT)

The Outriggers Hotels Rainbow Classic went four overtimes with the Panthers narrowly defeating the Roadrunners. Devante Wallace led all scorers with 32 points. The only way this game would have been more exciting is if high-flyer John Brown had suited up for High Point.


No. 8 Louisville 81, Minnesota 68: The Armed Forces Classic held Pitino vs. Pitino II with Rick once again prevailing over his son, Richard. Montrezl Harrell went for 30 points and seven boards.

No. 6 North Carolina 76 North Carolina Central 60: The Tar Heels had their hands full with reigning MEAC champion North Carolina Central leading by only nine at halftime. North Carolina forwards Kennedy Meeks, J.P. Tokoto and Brice Johnson all scored in double figures.

No. 5 Kansas 69, UC Santa Barbara 59Alan Williams and Co. gave the Jayhawks a good fight, but Kansas was able to stretch the lead to 10 and close out the opening night win. The game proved that UC Santa Barbara is going to be a tough mid-major opponent this season, and provided a tune-up for KU as it prepares for to-ranked Kentucky on Tuesday night.


1) Georges Niang, Iowa State: The All American candidate posted 30 points, nine rebounds and five assists in a 93-82 win over Oakland.

2) Duke freshman: Jahlil Okafor went for 19 points, six boards and four assists. Grayson Allen came off the bench for 18. Tyus Jones and Justise Winslow each went for 15 and connected on this highlight.

3) Kentucky’s platoons: Only 39 more wins from perfection (I kid). But it was a solid debut for Kentucky’s platoons in a 40-point win against an overmatched Grand Canyon. Nine players scored, 10 shots were blocked and the depth was on display with 10 player logging 16 minutes or more.


1) SEC schools not named Kentucky or Florida: Ole Miss lost to Charleston Southern on a buzzer-beating dunk. Tennessee was topped by No. 15 VCU. Georgia was topped by in-state rival Georgia Tech and the Kim Anderson era at Missouri began with an upset to UMKC. To be fair, Alabama, Auburn, Texas A&M, South Carolina and Mississippi State all won.

2) The defending national champions: It was until under 10 minutes through the second half for No. 17 UConn to recapture the led from Bryant before pulling off a 66-53 win. Senior Ryan Boatright scored 16 of his team-high 24 points after halftime.

3) Marcus Paige, North Carolina: Who some have picked as the player of the year was limited to 2-of-8 shooting for eight points. The Tar Heels, as a team, struggled shooting the ball, going 2-for-11 beyond the 3-point line and missing 1/3 of their attempts from the line.


  • Brandon Ashley, back from injury, scored a career-high 21 points for No. 2 Arizona in a 78-55 win over Mount St. Mary’s.
  • Frank Kaminsky (16 points, 11 boards) and Sam Dekker (15 points) led the way for No. 3 Wisconsin in a season-opening win over Northern Colorado.
  • Dorian Finney-Smith, Jon Horford and Michael Frazier led No. 7 Florida to a comfortable win over CAA favorite William & Mary.
  • No. 12 Villanova had its troubles with Lehigh, but came away with a 77-66 win. Dylan Ennis led ‘Nova with 19 and Austin Price scored a game-high 24.
  • No. 13 Gonzaga went for more than 100 in its first win of the season. Kentucky transfer Kyle Wiltjer led with 18.
  • Alan Williams registered his first of many double-doubles this year with 22 points and 13 boards in a loss to No. 5 Kansas.
  • D’Angelo Russell had 16 points for Ohio State. The freshman also set up the first dunk for Slam Thompson this season.
  • Bruce Pearl’s return to coaching didn’t go as smoothly as he’d would have liked it to be. Auburn trailed Milwaukee in the second half, but JuCo transfer Cinmeon Bowers went for 18 points, 17 boards in an 83-73 win.
  • No. 15 VCU topped Tennessee in the first game at the Veterans Classic in Annapolis, Maryland.
  • Aaron White stuffed the stat sheet with 19 points, seven boards, six assists in Iowa’s win over Hampton.
  • Jerian Grant’s first game back with Notre Dame ended with 14 points. Pat Connaughton scored his 1,000th point with a 17-point, 10-rebound performance.
  • No. 25 Harvard remains the king of Cambridge with a win over Division III MIT.
  • In a game where both programs were missing starting guards, No. 9 Virginia knocked off James Madison, 79-51
  • The Steve Wojciechowski era at Marquette began with a win over UT-Martin.
  • Life after Doug McDermott included 104 points in Creighton’s 27-point win over Central Arkansas.
  • Behind Delon Wright, Utah kicked off the season with a 90-72 win over Ball State.
  • Rakeem Christmas posted 21 points and nine boards in Syracuse’s win over Kennesaw State. Chris McCullough recorded a double-double of 13 points, 11 boards.
  • Moore led SMU in scoring with 22 points. Not Nic Moore, Ben Moore, as the Mustangs topped Lamar.
  • Trey Davis dropped 28 for UMass in a win over Siena.
  • Rysheed Jordan had 18 points and Chris Obepka (13 points, 13 boards) and Sir’Dominic Pointer (13 points, 10 rebounds) recorded double-doubles to lead St. John’s to a 77-58 win over N.J.I.T.
  • Fordham freshman Eric Paschall scored 31 points in his college debut.
  • Ryan Harrow (25 points), R.J. Hunter (24) and Kevin Ware (12) led Sun Belt favorite Georgia State in a lopsided win over Tennessee-Temple.
  • DePaul blew a 21-point lead, barely surviving a 72-71 outcome against UIC.

Providence hires Kim English as next head coach


PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Kim English is just 34 years old, but has already moved around a lot in his coaching career, serving as an assistant at three schools over six years before landing his first head coaching job at George Mason in 2021.

It was going to take a special opportunity for him to pack up and move again.

“Every place I’ve been, I’ve wanted to stay there forever. I really want to stay at a place for a long time,” English said Thursday. “I’m sick of moving,”

He believes he has found that place in Providence.

English was named the Friars’ new head coach, ending a fast search by first-year Providence athletic director Steve Napolillo that was created after Ed Cooley left to take the job at Big East rival Georgetown.

English becomes the 16th coach in school history. Cooley resigned on Monday following 12 seasons. He complied a 242-153 record with the Friars that included seven appearances, but just three March Madness victories.

English was 34-29 in two seasons at George Mason, leading the Patriots to a 20-13 record this past season. It was the first time the school reached the 20-win milestone since 2016-17.

George Mason president Gregory Washington said it would begin a national search to replace English.

In English, the Friars get a hungry, young coach who has built his reputation on recruiting. He said his secret sauce finding players is simple.

“You work at it. You do it every day. You’re relentless,” English said.

He played college basketball at Missouri and was drafted by the Detroit Pistons in the second round in 2012. But his NBA tenure was short and he was waived in 2013. He had a brief stint with the Chicago Bulls in 2014 and also played two years professionally overseas.

English began his coaching career as an assistant under Frank Haith at Tulsa in 2015 and spent two seasons there before being hired by Tad Boyle in 2017 as an assistant coach at Colorado. In 2019, former Friars coach Rick Barnes brought English to Tennessee as an assistant coach and he stayed until being hired by George Mason

He feels as if he has found a kindred spirit in Napolillo, who sold him on the passion the administration and community have for the Friars’ basketball program.

The intel he got about Providence and Napolillo aligned with what he observed when he got the chance to meet him.

“His passion, his fire, his love for Providence basketball really speaks to me. It really spoke to me what he was looking for,” English said. “As a first-year athletic director to be in this situation and to go at it and not just do what other people may have been comfortable with. … That’s what you want in a partnership.”

English also said he’s impressed by facilities at Providence that he said are among the best he’s seen.

Napolillo said the reason he was able to move so quickly on the hire was because he heeded the advice of his mentors who told him to always be prepared to have to fill a coaching vacancy.

“You always need to have names in a drawer for any coaching situation. You never know what’s going to happen,” he said. ”This year, as noise kept growing and growing, I had a list in my drawer.”

That list also included a Sports Illustrated article he saved from last year that listed some rising coaches. He can’t recall why, but for some reason he highlighted English’s name in the story.

English has already started working and began recruiting not long after signing his contract on Wednesday night, he said.

He also confirmed that Dennis Felton, one of his assistants at George Mason, will join him at Providence. Felton served as a Friars assistant under Barnes from 1992 to 1994.

In a Big East that is stacked from top to bottom with coaching talent, English feels as if the pieces are in place to build something special.

“I’ve had no reason to take a bad job,” English said. “I was a 20-something-year-old assistant in the SEC. I didn’t have to rush. If I’m going to have interest in it, it’s going to be really good.”

For him, that translated into being in a position to bring the Friars a national championship.

“If you want to win the big trophy, you’ve got to be in the big dance,” English said. “At the mid-major level it’s getting increasing harder to get to the big dance. This gives us an opportunity. If we are competing for Big East championships, we’re going to be in the show.”

Report: Notre Dame closing deal with Penn State’s Micah Shrewsberry

Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Notre Dame is finalizing a deal to make Penn State’s Micah Shrewsberry its new men’s basketball coach, two people with direct knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press.

The people spoke on condition of anonymity because contract details were still being completed and needed school approval.

Shrewsberry, in his second season at Penn State (23-14), led the Nittany Lions to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2011 and a tournament victory for the first time since 2001.

The Nittany Lions beat Texas A&M and were eliminated by Texas in the second round.

Notre Dame has been searching for a replacement for Mike Brey, who spent the last 23 season as coach of the Fighting Irish. He announced in January that this would be his last season with Notre Dame

The Irish finished 11-21.

Shrewsberry grew up in Indianapolis and went to school at Division III Hanover College in Indiana.

He was the head coach at Indiana University South Bend, an NAIA school located in the same city as Notre Dame, from 2005-07.

He later worked as an assistant coach at Butler and Purdue, with a stint as an assistant with the Boston Celtics in between.

ESPN first reported Notre Dame was close to a deal with Shrewsberry.

Armando Bacot says he’s returning for fifth season at North Carolina

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – North Carolina forward Armando Bacot is returning to play a fifth season for the Tar Heels.

Bacot announced his decision Wednesday, giving North Carolina fans a bit of good news after the Tar Heels failed to reach the NCAA Tournament.

The 6-foot-11 Bacot is North Carolina’s career leader in rebounds, double-doubles and double-figure rebounding games.

Bacot led North Carolina to a runner-up finish in last year’s NCAA Tournament, and his decision to return was a major reason the Tar Heels were ranked No. 1 in the preseason Associated Press Top 25.

The Tar Heels didn’t come close to meeting those expectations. They went 20-13 and opted against playing in the NIT. Bacot earned Associated Press All-America third-team honors and averaged 15.9 points and 10.4 rebounds.

He averaged 16.3 points and 13.1 rebounds in 2021-22. He capped that season by becoming the first player ever to have six double-doubles in one NCAA Tournament.

Bacot participated in North Carolina’s Senior Night festivities this year. He has a fifth year of eligibility because of the waiver the NCAA granted due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ed Cooley takes over at Georgetown with lofty aspirations

Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images

WASHINGTON – Ed Cooley’s task at Georgetown is to bring a once-storied program back to prominence in a competitive conference that has three teams still part of March Madness in the Sweet 16.

Cooley’s lofty aspirations go beyond lifting the Hoyas up from the bottom of the Big East Conference. After leaving Providence, which he took to the NCAA Tournament seven times in 12 years, he already is talking about trying to coach Georgetown to its first championship since 1984.

At his introductory news conference Wednesday that felt like a pep rally, Cooley said he wanted current and former players to envision cutting down nets and watching “One Shining Moment” with the nets hanging around their necks. He promised wins – many of them – and plotted a path forward that he knows will involve some tough times.

“It’s a process, and the process now, because you have a changing landscape in athletics, you’ll have an opportunity to probably move it quicker than you would have 10, 20 years ago,” Cooley said. “We’re going to lose some games. It’s OK. Losing’s part of growth. But over the course of time, it will pay off.”

Georgetown has lost a lot the past couple of years under Patrick Ewing, who was fired earlier this month after six seasons. The team went 7-25 this season after going 6-25 last season and lost 37 of 39 games in Big East play.

While Cooley at Providence was responsible for four of those defeats, the 53-year-old distanced himself from Georgetown’s recent run of losing.

“I don’t have anything to do what happened yesterday,” he said. “My job is to move us forward from today.”

Cooley’s mere presence is an acknowledgement that Georgetown needed a major change to become relevant again. After late Hall of Fame coach John Thompson’s 27-year-old run led to longtime assistant Craig Esherick succeeding him and then son John Thompson III and Ewing getting the head job, Cooley is the school’s first outsider in the position in a half-century.

His only connection to the Hilltop – beyond coaching in the Big East – is his daughter, Olivia, attending Georgetown. Cooley, a Providence native, said her desire to live in the Washington area played into his decision to leave for a conference rival.

It was certainly no accident that athletic director Lee Reed and school president John J. DeGioia used phrases like “new era” and “new chapter” when discussing Cooley. DeGioia said he believes Cooley will “uplift and restore this team” to compete at the highest levels of the sport.

“He has a proven record of success,” Reed said. “We knew we needed a leader, someone who understood our identity and could reimagine Georgetown basketball to fit today’s unique basketball landscape.”

That landscape, including players being able to profit off the use of their name, image and likeness (NIL) and more easily transfer schools, are the biggest changes Cooley has seen since landing his first head job at Fairfield in 2006. He expects to be aggressive, and given the high volume of Georgetown players coming and going via the transfer portal, could rebuild the roster in his image sooner rather than later.

“You have to find student-athletes that fit the way you want to play, your style of play, that fit you as a coach,” Cooley said. “We need to find players that can play for me that can attend Georgetown, not the other way around.”

Cooley acknowledged that some luck is needed but also stressed recruiting local talent to keep the best players in the region around. That’s just one building block to putting Georgetown back on the map, which Cooley wants the time and latitude to do.

“The word patience is always hard because everybody wants it and they want it right now,” he said. “Everybody wants it right now. Have a little bit of patience.”

Texas’ Arterio Morris plays amid misdemeanor domestic violence case

Amy Kontras-USA TODAY Sports

AUSTIN, Texas — In a season when Texas fired coach Chris Beard after a felony domestic violence arrest, it has allowed a reserve guard to keep playing while he awaits trial on a misdemeanor charge of assaulting an ex-girlfriend.

Second-seed Texas has advanced under interim coach Rodney Terry to the program’s first Sweet 16 since 2008, and the Longhorns play No. 3 Xavier in Kansas City, Missouri.

Arterio Morris, a freshman who was one of the top recruits in the country last year, was initially scheduled to stand trial March 29, three days before Final Four weekend. Denton County prosecutors were granted a delay to an unspecified date.

Beard was fired Jan. 5, about three weeks after he was arrested on suspicion of a felony charge of choking his fiancée in a fight during which she also told police he bit, and hit her. She later recanted the choking allegation and the Travis County district attorney dismissed the case, saying prosecutors were following her wishes not to got to trial and that the charge could not be proved beyond a reasonable doubt.

Morris is charged with Class A misdemeanor assault causing bodily injury to a family member, which in Texas includes dating relationships. It stems from a June 2022 confrontation in the Dallas suburb of Frisco. The charge carries penalties ranging from probation and fines to up to a year in jail if convicted.

Morris’ attorney, Justin Moore, said the charges against Beard and the player are different.

“(Beard) was charged with a felony family assault,” Moore said. “That was far more serious as to what Arterio was alleged to have to committed. We maintain Arterio’s innocence.”

According to police, the ex-girlfriend said Morris grabbed her arm and pulled her off a bed, and later pulled the front of her sports bra, causing an injury to her neck and shoulder area. Police reported seeing a sizable bruise or scratch.

Texas officials declined comment. Beard said before the season that school officials he would not identify determined the freshman could play this season.

Moore defended Texas officials’ decision to not suspend Morris.

“I do believe Texas has taken this seriously. They’ve also allowed Arterio to enjoy his due process rights,” Moore said.

Morris has played in all 36 games this season, although his minutes and have been limited on a senior-dominated team. He averages nearly 12 minutes and 4.7 points per game. His biggest moment was a soaring alley-oop dunk against Kansas in the Big 12 Tournament championship game.

Attempts to reach Morris’ ex-girlfriend through family members were not successful. According to online records, prosecutors sought the trial delay to “procure witness availability.” Prosecutor Jamie Beck did not immediately return messages.