Morning Five: 11.22.11 EditionPosted by nvr1983 on November 22nd, 2011
- Central Florida got some good news yesterday when the NCAA ruled that AJ Rompza would be able to return to play for the team on December 30 after it concluded its investigation into his relationship with an individual who was known to be working for a sports agent. Rompza was the only active player who was named in the NCAA notice of allegations to UCF (all the names were redacted in the public version, but the school has stated that Rompza was the only active player who was named) so the Knights appear to have cleared that hurdle from an individual standpoint although there is still the potential for significant penalties from the NCAA for the program as a whole. Rompza’s return means that the Knights will have all of their expected pieces back for the start Conference USA play after starting the season with five players suspended for what appear to be unrelated matters.
- One of the under the radar stories around Connecticut this year is the “rat-tail” that Shabazz Napier has been sporting. Up until now it has become a source of amusement for the media and a source of ridicule from the opposition and opposing fans although Napier’s triple-double on Sunday may have shut up the latter group for a little while. It turns out that there is a reason behind Napier’s fashion statement and it is not just some youthful fashion indiscretion; instead, it is a tribute to a slain friend. Napier claims that he might cut it pretty soon due to the amount of ridicule he is getting and his fear that he might harm his team if he reacts to someone who either doesn’t know the story or is trying to bait him into doing something dumb. We are guessing that now that the rest of the college basketball world knows the meaning behind it he will be getting mocked a lot less for it.
- We have already provided our guide for NBA fans who will be flocking to our beloved sport. Seth Davis has also decided to chime in on the subject and has offered his thoughts on the matter. Looking through Seth’s 13 points we agree with pretty much all of them especially the point about not using his picks to guide your selections for your NCAA Tournament pool. Use our picks instead. Actually you probably shouldn’t do that either. Find the person who knows the least about college basketball and see which teams they are picking. Come to us so you can sound intelligent when everybody asks you how you know so much and you can regurgitate what we say in our recaps as we desperately try to rationalize what just happened.
- Yesterday was Monday, which can mean just one thing: a Gary Parrish Poll Attack (actually Mondays can mean a lot of things, but just play along). Maybe the voters are getting a little less idiotic or maybe Parrish is just feeling a little holiday cheer, but this week’s version seems to be a little less angry than usual. This week’s attacks focus on voters not watching games or not bothering to even check head-to-head results. We have to say that we are a little surprised that Parrish has not lived up to his promise to attack voters who pick anybody other than North Carolina as the #1 team in the country. There are a handful who did so this week (including us) and Parrish appears to have “spared” them. For the record, we are more than willing to defend our selection of a new #1 in college basketball.
- Finally, here is your daily Bernie Fine update: things are starting to get a little more messy from a legal and PR standpoint for Syracuse. The Syracuse district attorney’s office and police department appear to be in an argument about whether the findings from the 2002 investigation into the allegations against Fine will be released for the grand jury to hear and the district attorney has actually obtained a subpoena requiring the police to hand over the records. As you can imagine the police department is not too happy and claims that they do not want to hand the information over “in a piecemeal fashion”. Meanwhile, both ESPN and Syracuse are starting to feel the pressure surrounding the original news report and the how the news was handled. Jason Whitlock, who is no stranger to ESPN bashing, came out with a column ripping ESPN’s journalistic integrity to release such a damaging story when so much of the information is being contested. Whitlock then went to the Deadspin, the beacon for journalistic integrity, and their editor claims that he would not have run such a story. We are not sure if this was included as a joke or not since the site seems ok reporting on the rumored dalliances of low-level ESPN employees (giving names in all of its stories) and posting explicit personal photos online. As for the university, it, more specifically Jim Boeheim, has come under attack by a child advocacy group for statements that Boeheim made about the reliability of the two individuals accusing Fine.