Morning Five: 07.25.12 Edition

Posted by nvr1983 on July 25th, 2012

  1. Louisville has made headlines recently with their abundance of scholarship players and the need to cut down and they managed to do so yesterday for one player as incoming freshman Terry Rozier will be spending next season in prep school at Hargrave Military Academy with the apparent reason being to straighten out his academic standing. Rozier will also get to know Anton Gill, another Louisville commit, who will be spending next season at the same prep school. While this may seem like bad news for Louisville fans it is good news for the rest of us in that Peyton Siva’s backup at point guard will be Russ Smith and we all could use a little more Russ Smith in our lives.
  2. North Carolina State fans who have been waiting to see what has been expected to be a loaded Wolfpack team may have to wait until after the team’s summer trip to Europe to see their full arsenal as Mark Gottfried has indicated that injured point guard Lorenzo Brown may not play during the team’s trip to Spain as he continues to recover from offseason knee surgery. The decision is not surprising as Gottfried says Brown is still only “between 75 and 80 percent healthy”. Given the goals of this Wolfpack team, which is a legitimate Final Four threat, this seems entirely reasonable although we are sure that Brown would love to take the court with his new teammates.
  3. A little over a month ago we mentioned the attempt by Michigan State athletic director Mark Hollis to get Mississippi State and Loyola (IL) to play a rematch of their 1963 Regional semifinals in Jenison Field House to commemorate the game, which the Bulldogs played despite a court order forbidding them from playing a team containing African-Americans. Unfortunately for Hollis, the schools were unwilling to commit to playing at an off-campus site, but they were willing to schedule a home-and-home series with the first match-up occurring on December 13 in Chicago. While the games probably won’t mean much in the context of the two seasons they could serve as an important way to educate many people about a significant event and highlight the ability of sports to stand for something more than just the outcome of a game.
  4. The first game will be without the services of Mississippi State freshman Jacoby Davis, a 6’1″, 185-lb point guard who was new head coach Rick Ray’s first signee. Davis tore his ACL on Monday during individual workouts and will most likely miss the entire 2012-13 season. Ray was already facing a precarious backcourt situation with only Davis and juco transfer Divonte Bloodman projected as point guards next season — now with Davis out of the lineup, the Bulldogs will have to depend on Bloodman and hope for the best unless Ray can find another point guard in the bushes somewhere. Mississippi State was for a while one of the most reliable SEC programs under Rick Stansbury, but it appears like it’s going to be some time before the Bulldogs get back to that level of success.
  5. SEC basketball coaches often feel like they’re the stepchildren of the conference in a region and among local cultures that value college football exponentially more than their sport on the hardwood. So imagine how they felt this week when they received an email from the league offices telling them that their conference schedules — the ones that they had all agreed to in June — were changed. According to this report from Gary Parrish, the conference’s 14 coaches weren’t even informed that changes were afoot — their first notification on the matter came in the email. So what does it mean? Last month the coaches agreed to an 18-game schedule where each school would play a permanent rival twice, four other schools in home-and-homes, and the other eight teams once. This report says that the home-and-homes have changed, meaning that some schools’ schedules have gotten considerably harder (oh, we play Kentucky twice now?), while others have gotten easier. For a league that likes to tell anyone who will listen that they have the most money, the most success, the most everything… it sounds like Mike Slive’s group might want to invest in a communications liaison. Folks aren’t happy.
nvr1983 (1397 Posts)

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