Morning Five: 11.15.12 Edition
Posted by nvr1983 on November 15th, 2012
- Yesterday was the first day of the early signing period, which runs from November 14 through 21. As we have said before we would think that at some point in the future the elite recruits would avoid signing at all and just enroll at schools so as not to put themselves in a situation of having signed at a school and have the coaching staff leave them for a better situation. Having said that there were a couple of big story lines with the most obvious being the success of the SEC, which has loaded up on the most highly rated recruits. We have already talked about the potentially ridiculous class that Kentucky is putting together, but it is also worth pointing out that Florida may end up with the second best class in the country when the dust settles. We will have much more on this later in the day so be on the look out for more details on what has gone down so far.
- When the NCAA declared Shabazz Muhammad ineligible it was not a matter of if, but when UCLA would appeal. The when turned out to be yesterday as UCLA formally filed its appeal to the NCAA to have Muhammad reinstated. Muhammad’s case has been discussed online ad nauseam, but a report suggesting that the NCAA may have already prejudged Muhammad came out yesterday based on a conversation overheard on a cross-country flight in which the boyfriend (possibly soon to be ex-boyfriend) of Abigail Grantstein, the NCAA’s lead investigator in the Muhammad case, allegedly told another passenger on August 7 that the NCAA was going to find Muhammad ineligible and not allow him to play this season, which contradicts the earlier NCAA statement that they had waited until they received all of the evidence (almost 3 months later) before deciding on Muhammad’s eligibility. Attorneys for Muhammad and UCLA are using this report as support to ask the NCAA to drop its investigation into Muhammad and reinstate him immediately. After criticizing the speed at which the Muhammad family provided it with information we wonder how quickly the NCAA will collect evidence on this one.
- Speaking of Muhammad, Arizona senior Solomon Hill has some advice for him: don’t go to college. Ok, maybe it isn’t that simple, but Hill has come out and said that he thinks that with the way that the NCAA is handling investigations into played eligibility he can see a day where top recruits skip college and just hire an agent out of high school rather than deal with NCAA investigations. While this is not a new idea we found this quote particularly interesting: “If you don’t want to be investigated, just don’t go to college. If you take money early, make the decision that you’re not going to attend college and you’re going to seek training. There’s nothing bad with that decision.” In addition, Hill also suggested that if Muhammad was not cleared by December he should just start preparing for the Draft. On the surface this seems like a perfectly reasonable idea, but we imagine that the UCLA fans and staff would prefer that Hill keep his ideas of the subject to himself.
- After just one weekend of college basketball there are already several notable injuries to report. The most significant are Mississippi State guard Jalen Steele, who will be out for six weeks with a fractured right wrist, and Providence guard Vincent Council, who will be out for four to five weeks with a hamstring injury (original article require registration). Two other stars who also sustained injuries, but should miss less time are UCLA guard Kyle Anderson, who is a game-time decision (right wrist contusion) for today’s game against James Madison, and Georgetown forward Otto Porter, who missed last night’s win over Liberty with a concussion and has no definitive timetable to return.
- Finally, in a score that is straight out of the Big Ten, Fresno State defeated UC Riverside 39-30, which might actually be a blowout given how low scoring the game was. The box score is full of interesting/horrifying stats in a game that was actually 35-27 before some window dressing made the final score slightly more respectable. The Fresno State media release is billing it as a defensive stalemate, which is a euphemism they must have borrowed from some old Big Ten press releases. Perhaps the most important statistic is that only 806 people (plus the players and coaches) had to watch it although some people apparently watched it online and are using it as an example of the beauty of college basketball.