Big 12 M5: 12.13.13 EditionPosted by Brian Goodman on December 13th, 2013
- Jeff Borzello of CBSSports.com tells the story of how Iowa State point guard DeAndre Kane plays hard in memory of his father, who unexpectedly passed away from a brain aneurysm last year. If you see Kane in action this season, it’s difficult to not come away with the impression that he has a major chip on his shoulder, and we mean that in the best way possible. Look for more coverage of Kane and ISU on RTC Big 12 later today when we break down the Friday night battle between the Cyclones and their rival, Iowa.
- Yahoo!’s Jeff Eisenberg runs down the five most surprising teams of the season to this point, and the list includes Texas. The Longhorns haven’t been particularly inspiring, but they do have eight wins against a decent collection of opponents. In a season that will largely be defined by whether Rick Barnes coaches his team into the NCAA Tournament, wins are what matter most. We’ll see if the Longhorns, currently ranked #74 by Ken Pomeroy, will make a statement next week when they face North Carolina and Michigan State in back-to-back contests.
- Kansas called a players-only meeting yesterday in hopes of addressing the numerous issues that have held the team back throughout the last few weeks. While you can make the argument that two of Kansas’ three losses this year came down to a bounce here or there, that certainly wasn’t the case on Tuesday night. And even against Colorado and Villanova, there were things the Jayhawks could have done to avoid the outcomes in those games decided by last-second shots. For those reasons, we wouldn’t advocate for anyone to get too wound up over this development.
- Sports On Earth‘s Will Leitch, with a little help from Matt Norlander, compiled a list of the top 25 coaching jobs in college basketball. It’s always an interesting discussion to have, especially in slower times like finals week, and this edition includes three Big 12 jobs (Kansas, Texas and Oklahoma State). Each are appealing for their own reasons: Kansas for its history and rabid fan base; Texas for its expectations relative to its resources and recruiting base; and Oklahoma State for its unmatched financial backer in T. Boone Pickens. It’s tough to quibble too much with Leitch’s selections, but if pressed, we’d probably advocate for the inclusion of Iowa State due to its homecourt advantage and an underrated local recruiting hotbed.
- The NCAA on Thursday released its initial findings on the impact of the game’s new rules geared toward increased scoring. The article doesn’t point out any team-specific results, but it’s a good reminder that some of the conference’s most memorable games so far have been high-scoring affairs that probably wouldn’t have been possible without the tweaks made over the summer. Kansas’ win over Duke, Iowa State’s victory over BYU, and Oklahoma State’s dismantling of Memphis in Stillwater can be considered works of art compared to the last several years of chucking cutters, hand-checking guards and defenders sliding in to take charges after the driver has taken flight. Here’s hoping the adjustment period is now gone for good.