Kansas: Prized Recruit Might Bolt for Kentucky

by - Published June 30, 2009 in Conference Notes, Newswire

Kansas’ top recruit, Xavier Henry, might not play for the Jayhawks after all following an article by J. Brady McCollough in the Kansas City Star that upset the Henry family, according to the Associated Press.  Henry picked the Jayhawks after seriously considering following coach John Calipari to Kentucky. Henry originally committed to Memphis while Calipari was coach — and his brother C.J. was a walk-on for the Tigers last season. McCullough’s article paints the Henry family as highly ambitious — to a fault.

Yet, while freshmen Thomas Robinson and Elijah Johnson are already on campus attending classes like most others around the country, the Henrys remain here. Carl says he encouraged Xavier to attend summer school.

“He doesn’t wanna go,” Carl says. “I said, ‘Well, you call Coach Self and tell him you don’t want to come.’ ”

Xavier says it’s nothing personal. He had to get his braces off and recently had root canals done on his front two teeth. Carl says it’s more that Xavier is not interested in attending class.

“If he didn’t have to go to college, he wouldn’t do it,” Carl says.

A month after signing with the Jayhawks, Carl says, the family looked into Xavier playing in Europe for a year.

“You don’t have to take any classes,” Xavier says.

According to the AP, Carl Henry is not happy with McCullough’s portrayal of the family. He said the kids’ mother was the only roadblock to Xavier and C.J. Henry attending Kentuckybecause she didn’t want to live in Kentucky. Apparently, that’s no longer a concern.

“The guy who wrote that story kind of betrayed my whole family and kind of made us look bad, like my kids are prima donnas, all I do is talk.” he said.

When Calipari left to be head coach at Kentucky, the brothers switched to Kansas, where their mother, father and aunt all played basketball. Carl Henry said they might have chosen to follow Calipari to his new school but that their mother did not want to live in Kentucky.

“She told coach Self she’s out of it. She don’t care where they go,” Henry said.

McCullough’s article appears to be a thinly veiled criticism of the Henry family. McCullough probably realized that he would ruffle the feathers of many Jayhawks — both longtime fans and freshly minted recruits. However, perhaps the most important element of the story is that McCullough’s article is true.

When pressed by the interviewers, the elder Henry said there was nothing factually inaccurate in the story.

Sampson Still Not Welcome

by - Published June 30, 2009 in Conference Notes, Newswire

The NCAA announced today that it has denied former coach Kelvin Sampson’s appeal of a show-cause penalty that won’t expire until November 2013, according to ESPN.com’s Andy Katz.

The former Indiana coach resigned in February 2008 amid an NCAA investigation into improper contact with recruits. Sampson was already on probation for improperly making hundreds of phone calls to recruits while he was Oklahoma’s coach.

According to the show-cause penalty(PDF), Sampson might bring additional restrictions upon any team that hires him. In addition, he cannot participate in any recruiting activities until November 2011.

The NCAA’s penalties fall just short of banning Sampson from the collegiate coaching ranks. Sampson has found refuge in the NBA, where he works for the Milwaukee Bucks.

Montana State: Bobcats Look to Keep Huse Through 2013

by - Published June 30, 2009 in Conference Notes, Newswire

Montana State coach Brad Huse has accepted a three-year contract extension that will keep him with the Bobcats through the 2012-13 season. His current contract expires in July 2010. The Montana Board of Regents must approve the contracts before they become official. In a press release, Montana State highlighted Huse’s accomplishments that led to the extension.

Citing teams that perform well on the court and in the classroom, Montana State University has agreed to three-year contract extensions with head women’s basketball coach Tricia Binford and head men’s coach Brad Huse, MSU Director of Athletics Peter Fields announced Monday.

After being picked among the league’s bottom two teams before the 2008-09 season, the Bobcat men’s team finished the regular season sixth, and roared through the league tournament to within seconds of a conference title, winning at Montana and Weber State along the way. Huse is 40-51 in three seasons at MSU.

Young Program Shines at Team Boston Elite Invitational

by - Published June 30, 2009 in Columns, Conference Notes

BOSTON – The Team Boston Elite Invitational was held this past weekend at the Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center in Boston.  The tournament was held later in the month than usual, and featured a number of teams from around the area along with a few from New York and Canada.

One program that had a banner Sunday was the fast-rising Expressions program, which captured both the 15-under and 16-under titles.  In the 15-under final, they knocked off the Mount Vernon Boys & Girls Club 47-32, and the 16-under team blew open a four-point game at halftime and ran away with an 85-55 decision against Metro Boston.

The 17-under final was a rematch of a semifinal game in the Massachusetts AAU tournament last month.  This time, a healthier M.A.D. team beat Metro Boston after dropping one to them in Kingston in May.

Now we take a look at some of the players from this weekend.

Mike Accaoui (5’9″ Sr. PG-SG, Barrington (RI) St. Andrew’s School) He’s not a player who puts up big numbers, but on Sunday he had a nice game helping his team to a blowout win.  He went for 16 points, including four three-pointers, while playing on a guard-heavy team.  In the fall, he’ll do a post-graduate year at the Winchendon School.

Ike Azotam (6’7″ Sr. SF-PF, Roxbury (MA) John D. O’Bryant HS) Although he had a few good scoring games, including 19 and 15 points early on, you didn’t get the feeling he was the same player who had a great spring last year.  He was far from dominant, had trouble the couple of times he guarded a wing on the perimeter, and didn’t play strong inside when he should have seemingly overpowered the defender.

Khem Birch (6’9″ Fr. PF-C, South Kent (CT) School) The long and athletic big man just keeps getting better and looks like a better prospect all the time.  He continued running the floor, got several offensive boards and stickbacks, blocked shots even when he looked like he wasn’t in position to make a play, and shows little signs of progress at the offensive end all the time.  Here, he was deadly on short corner jumpers.

Andrew Chrabascz (6’5″ Fr. SF-PF, Portsmouth (RI) High) A fundamentally sound player whose father played in Division I, he helped lead his team to the 15-under title.  He battled inside, was active and a major presence on the glass, showed a face-up game to go with his post scoring, and the righty made a nice post move to his left and went up with the left hand to score.

Ronnie Fernandez (So. SG, Sudbury (MA) Lincoln-Sudbury Regional HS) A major reason his team got to the 16-under final was his hot shooting in the semifinals.  Down by ten, they scored 12 unanswered points to take the lead, led by a couple of three-pointers by him, and he shot it well all weekend.  That said, he needs to grow more for the shooting guard spot, and although his shot went this weekend, it hasn’t always done that, and it’s noteworthy that his release is more than a little unorthodox.

Eric Katenda (6’7″ So. SF, Cheshire (CT) Academy) One of the most intriguing prospects at the event, he’s long and doesn’t look to be done growing yet.  Although he’s not a great athlete, he uses his length well and has solid ball skills for the wing position, as he finished well and showed a touch with runners and jumpers off the dribble.  One nice play was when he got a rebound and took the ball coast to coast for a layup.

Ricardo Ledo (6’5″ So. SG-SF, Warwick (RI) Bishop Hendricken HS) It wasn’t his best weekend, but this fast-rising wing by no means struggled.  He simply played more of a complementary role in helping his team to the championship, while still showing a lot of the tools he has, especially his ability to drive aggressively to the basket to make something happen.  It’s the end of an excellent spring for a young man who has really emerged over the last couple of months.

Deric McCottrell (6’3″ So. SG-SF, Needham (MA) St. Sebastian’s HS) Active wing really seemed to find the right role this weekend by finding the ball.  Playing like a classic wing that you don’t run plays for, he got several stickbacks and loose balls and was a solid reserve contributor for his team.

Alex Murphy (6’8″ Fr. SF-PF, Wakefield (RI) St. Mark’s School) It was another good showing for this skilled wing, as he shot the ball well from long range and scored a few driving baskets while running the floor.  He generally made the right decision in terms of shooting or passing in the flow of the offense, and with his size there’s a great deal of potential.

Shabazz Napier (6’0″ So. PG, Charlestown (MA) Lawrence Academy) For the most part, basketball wasn’t a problem aside from playing too much for show, as he attempted to make highlight-reel passes that too often weren’t there and thus resulted in turnovers.  He scored well, with his long range shots not falling as often as they have in the past, and he created for teammates.  On the down side, he showed bad body language at times early on and looked to the officials for calls, and according to sources, was in an argument with a coach during a game that had people around the gym buzzing when he was nowhere to be found on the court or the bench.  He played in all remaining games after that.

Showly Nicholson (5’10” Fr. PG, Exeter (NH) Philips Exeter Academy) An excellent student, he’s an athletic guard who helped lead his team to the 15-under title.  He has a good frame and good offensive potential, knocking down jump shots out to the three-point range.

Kyle Reardon (So. SF-PF, Salem (MA) High) A skilled and active forward, there’s no question about his effort on the floor as he’s always on the go and has a nose for the ball.  Capable of playing either forward spot, he’s comfortable inside or out at the offensive end and can play bigger as he rebounded well.  Next fall, he will repeat his sophomore year at the Rivers School.

Cannan Severin (6’3″ So. SG-SF, Marlborough (MA) High) An athletic wing with a good body, his best asset is that he competes every second he’s on the court.  He won’t blow you away skill-wise, but he’s not lacking in that area, either, and he helped his team to the 16-under title.

Imoh Silas (6’9″ So. PF-C, Plymouth (NH) Holderness School) Well-built post player is a little raw offensively, but isn’t lacking in intangible areas.  He has the tools to be an enforcer inside, as he’ll block and alter shots, runs the floor well, and is aggressive inside.  His good motor makes up for some of his lack of skill, as does his quickness inside as on a couple of occasions he made a quick move to score on the post.

Jules Tavares (6’2″ So. SG, Wareham (MA) High) Here’s a great example of a player who kept competing through some struggles.  Early on Sunday, he was forcing passes that weren’t there and thus committing turnovers, and he wasn’t shooting well.  But by continuing to compete, he set the stage for a strong finish, as he shot the ball well in the semifinals and title game and was more like himself.

Roderick Tyler (So. SF, Lexington (MA) Minuteman Tech) Well-built wing works hard and is a plus athlete.  He got out in transition and finished well, getting several baskets during a big rally by his team in a semifinal game they went on to win.

Akeem Williams (5’10” Jr. PG-SG, Brockton (MA) Winchendon School) Thick guard continued to play well, hitting a clutch shot in a Friday night game before a big Sunday effort.  There, he went for 27 points with good long range shooting.

Also noteworthy among the youngest players are eighth graders Carlin Haymon, a promising point guard headed to the Rivers School next fall, and Kaleb Joseph, a point guard with some length and a lot of growing left.

Memphis: Williams Lands With Tigers

by - Published June 29, 2009 in Conference Notes, Newswire

Former Duke guard Elliot Williams has decided to transfer to Memphis to be closer to his family in the city, according to the Memphis Commercial Appeal. His mother has a serious illness, and the family has not provided details about her condition. Williams received a release from his scholarship last week and quickly decided among the Tigers, Vanderbilt, Tennessee and Kentucky.

“It fits perfect, the situation, but you never want to wish this on anybody,” said Williams. “Like I said, if this situation wasn’t happening, we wouldn’t be talking right now. But it did happen, and I just wanted to pick the perfect school. What better way to come back home than to play in front of the people that have been supporting me since high school?”

Williams, a former McDonald’s All-American and Tennessee Division 2-A Mr. Basketball selection, was granted his release by Duke last Wednesday so he could transfer to a school closer to home.

Williams, who averaged 4.2 points and 2.3 rebounds per game as a freshman last season, will look to play next season by asking the NCAA to waive the redshirt year that most transfers must take. With Memphis losing its top four scorers, the Tigers could use Williams’ presence in the backcourt.

Duke: Williams Leaves Team

by - Published June 27, 2009 in Conference Notes, Newswire

Duke freshman guard Elliot Williams announced that he is leaving the team to transfer closer to home. Williams said he wants to be closer to Memphis, Tenn., because of family medical concerns. Williams was a spark plug for the Blue Devils, providing a bigger, more defensive presence in the starting lineup down the stretch. He averaged 4.2 points and 2.3 rebounds per game. Coach Mike Krzyzewski said in a university press release that he is sad to see Williams go and wishes him and his family well.

“Our thoughts and prayers go out to Elliot and his family,” said head coach Mike Krzyzewski. ““We fully support him in his efforts to be closer to them during this trying time. He is a good young man with an opportunity to become an outstanding player. We wish him well as he determines his future. He will always be a part of our program and we will always be in his corner.”

WAC: Conference Neutralizes Tournament for 2011 and 2012

by - Published June 27, 2009 in Conference Notes, Newswire

WAC officials have signed a contract to move the conference tournament to Las Vegas in 2011 and 2012. The top eight teams from the regular season will play at Orleans Arena in Las Vegas, which is a neutral site. Reno has hosted the tournament in recent years. It is the hometown of Nevada, giving the Wolf Pack a significant home court advantage in a tournament that often decides a single NCAA Tournament for the WAC. Conference officials and coaches applaud the move for 2011 and 2012 in a conference press release.

“We are extremely excited about bringing the WAC’s most prestigious event back to the city of Las Vegas and the Orleans Arena,” said WAC Commissioner Karl Benson. “Over the last couple of years, it has become more critical and important to find a neutral site to satisfy the concerns of our men’s and women’s coaches. WAC fans have shown that they enjoy traveling to Las Vegas and I am certain the Orleans Arena will create a great tournament atmosphere.”

“WAC head basketball coaches have been pushing for a neutral site for a number of years,” said Utah State men’s head coach Stew Morrill. “Las Vegas will be an exciting location, The Orleans is a great venue, and most importantly no team will have home court advantage.”

This marks the second time that the WAC Basketball Tournament will be played in Las Vegas. From 1997-99, the tournament was played at the Thomas & Mack Center when UNLV was a member of the WAC.

Summit League: Conference Looks to Build on Tournament’s Sioux City Success

by - Published June 27, 2009 in Conference Notes, Newswire

Summit League officials announced that they plan to continue playing their conference tournament in Sioux City, S.D., through 2012, extending the current two-year deal by an additional two years. The Summit League played its conference tournament in Sioux City for the first time this past season, and the tournament produced record crowds and corporate sponsorship. In a conference press release, Southern Utah’s president said he is optimistic about continued success in Sioux City during the next three years.

“Last season’s Summit League Championships in Sioux Falls achieved record level success that can be directly attributed to the support shown by all parties involved,” said Southern Utah University President Dr. Michael Benson. “Extending our agreement to hold the tournament in Sioux Falls for an additional two seasons will give our league and the city an opportunity to continue to grow The Summit League Basketball Championships into a marquee event for both the city and the state of South Dakota.”

Attendance for the 2009 Summit League Basketball Championships reached a new league standard with 34,681 spectators, eclipsing the previous mark by over 6,000.

NBA Draft Quick Hitters

by - Published June 26, 2009 in Columns, Conference Notes

Some quick hitters on the 2009 NBA Draft:

  • Well, the Clippers didn’t screw this one up. I’m sure many fully expected that they would be the Clippers and take someone like Tyreke Evans with the first pick, but they took the only choice there was for that pick in Blake Griffin. Maybe there’s hope yet.
  • The first puzzle pick of the evening goes to Minnesota in taking Jonny Flynn with the fifth pick right after taking Ricky Rubio. You have to think there’s a deal coming involving one of the two, although there is also speculation that it won’t be easy to get Rubio out of his contract in Spain just yet.
  • How about Terrence Williams going in the lottery? A year ago, he opted to come back to Louisville knowing he was a likely second round pick at the time, but he put in a solid year of work and now goes in the lottery.
  • Let the arguments continue about Tyler Hansbrough. They’ve always been there, regarding how good a player he will be, but as he went at No. 13, that will only add to them.
  • Jrue Holiday stayed in the draft to be taken 17th? I’m sure that wasn’t his idea, and all the talk was that he was going in the lottery, perhaps even the top five.
  • Speaking of players who stayed in the draft to go low, how about Jodie Meeks going 41st instead of being a key part of a nice team at Kentucky next year? Then there’s Chase Budinger going 44th overall and Patrick Mills going 55th. Mills might prove to be a steal going that late.
  • Although he wound up going to San Antonio, the poster child this year for coming out early and not faring well is DeJuan Blair. Hopefully he will tell players not to put any stock in Internet draft boards – something I could have told anyone long before he ever set foot on the Peterson Events Center floor. When he declared for the draft and said he wouldn’t be coming back to Pittsburgh, Blair told the Associated Press, “I’m an Internet freak and I go on all the draft boards, and nobody’s got me going second round. That’s almost guaranteed to me.” I guess there was a reason he used the word “almost” in that last sentence.
  • The underclassman who made out best by in staying in the draft is Austin Daye, going 15th to Detroit as purely an upside pick. Sure, other underclassmen were taken ahead of him, but Daye is tough to figure and there was a wide range of places he could go in this draft at the time he decided to stay in it.
  • The Utah Jazz continue to make great value picks, something they’ve done a lot of over the years as they’ve rarely been in the lottery. This time around, getting Eric Maynor with the 20th pick is terrific.
  • Every year there are several notable underclassmen who stayed in the draft and went undrafted. This year’s class includes Eric Devendorf (Syracuse), Daniel Hackett (USC), Paul Harris (Syracuse), Shawn Taggart (Memphis) and Dar Tucker (DePaul).

Recap of Hoopville’s NBA Draft Coverage on Twitter

by - Published June 26, 2009 in Conference Notes, Newswire

You can now keep tabs on Hoopville’s spin on the college basketball world on Twitter. We sent tweets throughout last night’s NBA Draft — all four-plus hours! If you missed it, here is a top 10 list of the highlights followed by the complete roll call.

Highlights – The Top Ten

  1. Less than fours till OU’s Blake Griffin officially becomes a Clipper! After that, surprises are sure to follow
  2. Bad week for Spain: Soccer team loses to US; Ricky Rubio dropping. But is he destined to be a King?
  3. Incidentally, Syracuse’s Flynn is no relation to Hoopville founder Andrew Flynn. Though they both lack a consistent 3-point shot.
  4. RT @sportsguy33: Why aren’t the ESPN guys wondering about trades here? Curry makes no sense for GS (Phx???) + Flynn makes no sense for Minny
  5. Knicks take Jordan Hill, who might be instantly be the most athletic Knick taller than 5’9
  6. DePick of DeRaptors at No. 10: DeMar DeRozan from USC. According to ESPN, he can’t go left. Neither can my mother-in-law. DeNial !
  7. Do you think Shaq watches those Dos Equis commercials and KNOWS that he’s the most interesting man in the world?
  8. The Wolves are thankfully done drafting, taking Henk Norel with their sixth pick out of the first 47 picks. That’s about 17% of all picks.
  9. Phoenix takes the “other” Griffin at No. 48. Taylor Griffin will play against brother Blake in Pacific Division battles.
  10. For those who want to know the name of the catchy song in the Kia Soul hamsters commercial: “Do What You Do” by Marz feat. Pack and Mummiez

The Rest:

  • With the No. 60 and final overall pick, Miami selects Memphis’ Robert Dozier. Just don’t ask him about standardized tests in Georgia.
  • With the second-to-last pick, the defending champs take Chinemelu Elonu out of Texas A&M.
  • With Boston’s only pick in the draft, the Celtics take Tennessee-Martin’s Lester Hudson. All you need to know: 28.5 ppg last season.
  • Lakers give Miami Patrick Beverley (No. 42) for a future second rounder and cash.
  • Mavs take St. Joe’s forward Ahmad Nivins at No. 56. Not much else to say at this point.
  • For those who want to know the name of the catchy song in the Kia Soul hamsters commercial: “Do What You Do” by Marz feat. Pack and Mummiez
  • If I were a Wolves fan, I’d be depressed listening to David Kahn. The man doesn’t have a convincing plan. And cracks awkward, unfunny jokes.
  • Portland gets one of the best values in St. Mary’s PG Patrick Mills at No. 55. He appeared to be flirting with the first round last week.
  • Houston trades for Chase Budinger, drafted No. 44 by Detroit, giving up future picks.
  • UAB’s Robert Vaden gets the nod at No. 54 from the Charlotte Bobcats.
  • Sound familiar? Spurs take a French point guard in the draft. San Antonio takes Nando De Colo at No. 53.
  • With eight picks to go, the 2009 NBA Draft is closing in on a midnight EST finish.
  • Pacers take much-beleaguered UConn guard A.J. Price at No. 52. Husky guard has had legal problems, health problems and shooting problems.
  • Miami gets two future picks from New Orleans in a trade for Marcus Thornton (No. 43).
  • Spurs go with a shooter at No. 51 with Miami’s Jack McClinton. He’s a classic San Antonio role player.
  • Jerry Sloan gets tough guy in Michigan State’s Goran Suton at No. 50. If Suton plays mean, he could thrive under Sloan in Salt Lake City.
  • Phoenix takes the “other” Griffin at No. 48. Taylor Griffin will play against brother Blake in Pacific Division battles.
  • The Wolves are thankfully done drafting, taking Henk Norel with their sixth pick out of the first 47 picks. That’s about 17% of all picks.
  • UNC alum Stuart Scott beams with pride when emphasizing the Heels’ championships in ’05 and ’09. Hoopville’s own UNC alum understands.
  • Cleveland gets a good wing player in UNC’s Danny Green. If he can step up his shooting and defense, he will make the Cavs’ team and earn PT.
  • The Wolves pick again, and they take a point guard. Again. This time it’s Florida’s Nick Calathes, who likely will play in Greece first.
  • Pistons take ANOTHER swingman-type player in Arizona’s Chase Budinger at No. 44. Not all of these guys can play 3/4 for Detroit.
  • Dick Vitale’s voice sounds healthier than it did during the entire basketball season. For better or worse.
  • Heat add LSU’s Marcus Thornton at No. 43. Thornton had a sensational NCAA performance against UNC.
  • Former Razorback Patrick Beverley lands with Lakers at No. 42 after spending a year in Ukraine.
  • Do you think Shaq watches those Dos Equis commercials and KNOWS that he’s the most interesting man in the world?
  • You gotta wonder if Meeks wouldn’t be a first-round pick in 2010 if he had a championship under his belt at Kentucky…
  • Bucks take Kentucky’s Jodie Meeks at No. 41. The former Wildcat can shoot lights out — against college defenses.
  • Washington dishes Jermaine Taylor to Houston for straight cash. Wizards are ditching bad contracts and collecting cash.
  • Bobcats get another athletic forward in Xavier’s Derrick Brown after picking Gerald Henderson in the first round.
  • Detroit goes international at No. 39 with Jonas Jerebko from Sweden. The Pistons have picked forwards with all three picks in the draft.
  • Portland takes Washington’s Jon Brockman at No. 38 on behalf of Sacramento in exchange for Jeff Pendergraph (No. 31).
  • San Antonio picks DeJuan Blair to give Pitt back-to-back picks. Generally considered a borderline lottery pick, Spurs get fantastic value.
  • Memphis ends Sam Young’s freefall at No. 36. At 24, maybe he was just a little TOO experienced
  • Georgetown’s DaJuan Summers goes No. 35 to Detroit. Much-improved shooter this past season. Detroit continues to revamp.
  • The Wolves don’t need three point guards in one draft; they trade Lawson to Nuggets for future first-round pick. Probably good for everyone.
  • At No. 33, Blazers add Nova’s Dante Cunningham. The big man can play close to the hoop and shoot the midrange jumper.
  • Wizards take Central Florida’s Jermaine Taylor (SG) with their only pick in the draft. Flip Saunders is building a scoring machine in DC.
  • Dallas and Oklahoma City swap picks, with B.J. Mullens going to the Thunder and Rodrigue Beaubois moving to Dallas.
  • To start the second round, Kings take a forward in Arizona State’s Jeff Pendergraph
  • Surprises who have fallen to second round: Pitt’s DeJuan Blair and Sam Young; Arizona’s Chase Budinger
  • With the last pick of the first round, Cleveland takes Christian Eyenga, a player who hails from Congo.
  • Lakers, on behalf of the Knicks, take Seminoles’ Toney Douglas, a strong defender who should fit nicely with Knicks’ other pick: Jordan Hill
  • For the fourth time in the first round, Wolves take a guard: This time it’s UNC’s Wayne Ellington, who joins fellow Tar Heel Ty Lawson.
  • Memphis takes energetic forward in Mizzou’s DeMarre Carroll at No. 27. Carroll played Mike Anderson’s full-court game, so he’s ready to run.
  • At No. 26, Chicago drafts its second big man in USC’s Taj Gibson, who will join James Johnson, drafted earlier tonight.
  • Oklahoma City takes Rodrigue Beaubois from Guadeloupe at No. 25. Oklahoma is quite a different world compared to the Carribean
  • Dallas picks Ohio State’s BJ Mullens and gets a legitimate 7-footer. He’s raw and might not be useful with the crop of veterans who have
  • DeJuan Blair’s health concerns apparently are scaring away a lot of teams. That and the fact he’s short for a power forward.
  • Another foreign player: Israel’s Omar Casspi will join Tyreke Evans in Sacramento. Sooner or later.
  • With so many guards picked, a run on big men is inevitable.
  • And there’s an international pick – Victor Claver goes to Portland at No. 22.
  • Darren Collison goes to New Orleans at No. 21. He will be understudy to the best PG in the league: Chris Paul
  • The Jazz get a tough, defensively superior guard in Eric Maynor at No. 20. A little surprise with Carlos Boozer likely leaving thru free
  • It’s probably time for the international players to start coming off the board
  • Hawks add another potentially explosive scorer in Jeff Teague. He’s an good fit for Mike Woodson’s system
  • With Minnesota’s 3rd pick, the Wolves take ANOTHER talented PG in Ty Lawson. Trade bait?
  • Sixers grab a steal in Jrue Holiday at No. 17. He will fill the likely vacancy created by free agent Andre Miller.
  • The Bulls hope James Johnson at No. 16 can provide some beef in the post to help get Chicago into the NBA’s elite
  • Should Tayshaun Prince be worried? Austin Daye and his lanky, athletic frame goes No. 15 to the Pistons.
  • Phoenix moves into full rebuilding mode after trading Shaq and Stoudemire, and Earl Clark at No. 14 will be part of Suns 2.0
  • Tyler Hansbrough makes it into the lottery with the Indiana Pacers at No. 13. The Pacers instantly are a tougher team.
  • UNC guy Larry Brown chooses Duke swingman Gerald Henderson at No. 12
  • The Nets select Louisville’s Terrence Williams with the 11th overall pick. Primary trait: Eccentricity and inconsistency – “point forward”
  • New OKC selectee James Harden sure knows his clichés in the live chat. He’s just happy to be here, hopes he can help the ball club.
  • Nets take Terrence Williams at No. 11. He will step into Vinsanity’s shoes. That’s a tall order for a rookie. Give him time.
  • RT @notgoingpro: Fans booing Donnie Walsh is good sign – for the Knicks. IGuess they were upset he didn’t take Steve Alford
  • TWWL’s scouts adjectives on Jennings: “freakish, explosive, spectacular, outstanding, dangerous” – “slight, poor, streaky, defensive gambler
  • Jennings at No. 10 to Milwaukee – the labels say “Italy”. “Jennings” doesn’t sound like an Italian name. He’s from LA – spurned Arizona.
  • Bucks take Brandon Jennings. Likely means another team will get a shot at signing Ramon Sessions
  • “Milly-waw-kay – it’s Algonquin for ‘peaceful valley’ ” – Alice Cooper in Wayne’s World. Here comes the Bucks pick: Brandon Jennings!
  • The Bucks are on the clock – as early as yesterday they were rumored to be targeting Harden or Flynn. Whoops. #badtiming
  • DePick of DeRaptors at No. 10: DeMar DeRozan from USC. According to ESPN, he can’t go left. Neither can my mother-in-law. DeNial !
  • An update for followers – we’re experiencing latency with Michael Protos’ tweets. That’s what you get for tweeting and dining with your wife
  • Raptors follow expectations and pick DeMar DeRozan at No. 9
  • Knicks take Jordan Hill, who might be instantly be the most athletic Knick taller than 5’9
  • Former Hoopville contributor (and man-about-Sacramento) Jimmy Spencer is pumped about the Stephen Curry pick. “Screw defense” SC+Ellis=great
  • Time for the Wolves to reload their backcourt with back-to-back picks
  • Let’s see who D’Antoni picks for the Knicks: It’s Arizona’s Jordan Hill! Quick big man but still pretty raw.
  • Thunder draft for need, take James Harden. That might be an indication that the Thunder really believe Westbrook will be PG of the future
  • Kings take Tyreke Evans at No. 4. Hard to argue with Evans’ size and explosiveness. He needs to work as hard King James did to improve s
  • RT @sportsguy33: Why aren’t the ESPN guys wondering about trades here? Curry makes no sense for GS (Phx???) + Flynn makes no sense for Minny
  • Memphis ends the suspense surrounding the No. 2 pick by taking UConn’s Hasheem Thabeet
  • TWWL’s Live Chat has Ric Bucher saying that the T-Wolves “will keep both Flynn and Rubio, and they think that both can play together.”
  • Warriors grab Stephen Curry to pair with Monta Ellis, to the chagrin of thousands of Knicks fans
  • And Golden State selects Davidson’s Stephen Curry with the 6th overall pick.
  • Incidentally, Syracuse’s Flynn is no relation to Hoopville founder Andrew Flynn. Though they both lack a consistent 3-point shot.
  • Rumors are flying that either Rubio or Flynn will be flipped before the night is through.
  • And Jonny Flynn gives the Wolves a ridiculous combination of young point guards
  • Blake Griffin, welcome to the Los Angeles Clippers. Good luck!
  • There it is – Rubio (from Spain) goes to the T-Wolves with the No. 5 pick. …and Minnesota is still on the clock.
  • Sacramento selects Memphis guard Tyreke Evans with the No. 4 overall pick.
  • It was really shocking to recount the layers of woe that Clippers players have endured (as mentioned in Simmons’ piece). Good luck Griffin.
  • There he goes. The Wolves take Rubio. If he is equal to his Olympics performance, all other Wolves instantly get better
  • Thabeet’s ceiling might be Dikembe Mutumbo. Great on D but you can’t win a championship if he’s your centerpiece
  • Wow – Arizona State’s James Harden goes to OKC with the #3 overall pick. He really climbed the lottery projections in recent days.
  • Bad week for Spain: Soccer team loses to US; Ricky Rubio dropping. But is he destined to be a King?
  • Lakers sell 29th pick to Knicks; Blazers must have their eye on someone by trading with Mavs to move up 2 spots to No. 22. Dallas gets N
  • Whatever happens tonight in draft will be overshadowed globally by death of Michael Jackson. Thoughts and prayers go to Jackson family.
  • Lakers sell 29th pick to Knicks; Blazers must have their eye on someone by trading with Mavs to move up 2 spots to No. 22
  • Less than fours till OU’s Blake Griffin officially becomes a Clipper! After that, surprises are sure to follow
  • RT @sportsguy33 Today’s column (with all the fixes): An Open Letter To Blake Griffin. Print it out, it’s long. http://tinyurl.com/lzzbzg

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Coaching Changes and NBA Draft Early Entrants

The coaching carousel is moving. Keep track of the latest coaching changes right here on Hoopville.

Also, keep track of players who have declared early for the NBA Draft.

Your Phil of Hoops

Simply put, Syracuse needs to improve offensively

November 22, 2014 by

syracuse

Jim Boeheim didn’t have many things to say about his team’s offense, but that said it all. It’s at that end of the floor that Syracuse’s fate this season will be determined.

Growing pains are here for talented Brown team

November 20, 2014 by

brown

Brown has good talent and should be a factor in the Ivy League, but with three sophomores starting on the perimeter, growing pains are in the foreseeable future

New season, same challenge for New Hampshire

November 15, 2014 by

newhampshire

It’s a new season at New Hampshire, and while the Wildcats look like they will defend, they also appear to have the same challenge they have had for a long time now: scoring.

Hoopville Archives

Reader Poll

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2014 Prep School Tour

Missed a recap of an open gym workout? We have them all right here for you.

Sept. 9: Putnam Science Academy
Sept 10: Commonwealth Academy
Sept. 11: St. Andrew's
Sept. 12: Northfield Mount Hermon
Sept. 16: Brewster Academy and Phillips Exeter
Sept. 17: Brooks School
Sept. 21: Holderness School
Sept. 23: St. Thomas More and Marianapolis Prep
Sept. 24: South Kent School and Kent School
Sept. 25: Williston Northampton
Sept. 28: Wilbraham and Monson Academy and Suffield Academy
Sept. 30: New Hampton
Oct. 5: Worcester Academy
Oct. 7: Brimmer and May
Oct. 8: Cushing Academy
Oct. 9: Tilton
Oct. 12: Tabor Academy and Rivers School
Oct. 14: The Master's School
Oct. 16: Vermont Academy

You can also find them all right here.

Phil Kasiecki on Twitter

Recruiting Coverage

New England Prep Schools 2014-15: looking back and looking ahead

November 3, 2014 by

nepsac

With a series of prep school open gym visits in the book and the season not far away, here’s a look back at open gyms and a look forward to the season in the New England prep school ranks.

Marianapolis Prep will battle in Class AA

October 20, 2014 by

marianapolis

Marianapolis Prep is far from loaded with talent, but they have enough perimeter talent to be dangerous. As is usually the case, they will battle and be a tough out in Class AA.

New Vermont Academy coach has put together a contender

October 17, 2014 by

vermontacademy

Vermont Academy has a new coach for the second year in a row, but they shouldn’t skip a beat. They have enough talent to win a lot of games and make a deep run in NEPSAC Class AA.

The Master’s School has good students and talent

October 15, 2014 by

mastersschool

The Master’s School has a number of good students, and they will continue to head to college later. This time around, they also have some talent on the hardwood and should win a few more games.

Rivers will try to build on a breakthrough season

October 13, 2014 by

riversschool

The Rivers School had a breakthrough season last year, winning the Independent School League. They will try to build on that with a team that loses a lot but also returns a lot from last season’s team.