Morning Five: 11.25.13 Edition

Posted by nvr1983 on November 25th, 2013


  1. Florida still has a lot of question marks hanging over its head due to injury and eligibility concerns, but they finally have Scottie Wilbekin back after they announced that the senior point guard had been reinstated and will play tonight. Wilbekin, who averaged 9.1 points and 4.9 assists per game last season, had been suspended since June for an unspecified violation of team rules, but Florida was expected to have enough depth at the guard position to overcome his absence early in the year. While they have fared well the injuries have continued to mount (the latest being Kasey Hill’s high ankle sprain) so his return will certainly be welcome in Gainesville.
  2. We always feel uneasy when we read about a player dealing with cardiac issues as we have flashbacks to Hank Gathers. So when we heard that High Point senior Allan Chaney appeared to collapse during his team’s game yesterday we feared that we might be looking at a similar situation. However, based on the reports that we have heard it appears that his internal defibrillator fired inappropriately, which is not that uncommon of an occurrence with the device. Chaney is one of two Division I players who have the device ( Utah State’s Danny Berger is the other) and his cardiac history (viral myocarditis leading the Virginia Tech doctors to not clear him and his transfer to High Point) is well-chronicled. We just hope that this is a technical issue and not a cardiac one.
  3. If you thought that there was a possibility that Devonte Graham and Appalachian State might reconcile, you can scratch that idea. Graham made headlines earlier this year when the media became aware that Appalachian State was not letting him out of his letter of intent after he shot up the recruiting rankings. If they do not release him, Graham will either have to go to Appalachian State or sit out a year and have three years of eligibility remaining. As for the former, Graham’s coach says “there’s no shot in hell” that Graham goes to Appalachian State. So it appears that either Appalachian State will have to back down (from public criticism) or Graham will have to sit out a year. Based on what we have seen in the past few years in these type of situations it seems like the latter is a more likely scenario.
  4. We have read plenty of complaints from writers and fans about the new rules, but Tom Izzo is the first prominent coach that we are aware of to speak out so strongly against the rules. Izzo, speaking after his team’s win on Saturday, criticized the use of free throws as a means to increase scoring. Obviously it is too early to judge the impact of these rules fully so we will reserve judgement on them, but if enough coaches join Izzo in their criticism of the new rules it will be interesting to see if any modifications are made by the start of new season.
  5. It seems ridiculous to already be looking forward to 2016 early-season tournaments, but the Hall of Fame Tip-Off Classic has already secured a headliner for its event three years from now as it announced that Duke has agreed to participate. Although the event struggles to fill its 10,000-seat arena at Mohegan Sun the addition of Duke to the field should at least ensure that the seats are not completely empty for the entire event. With the event still three years away no other teams have committed to play there, but perhaps Duke’s early commitment will draw in a few more big-name teams to increase the profile of the event.
nvr1983 (1397 Posts)

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