In getting all the preview stuff together, we lost a little track of the news other than the endless suspensions and injuries…
- NCAA Not Backing Down on Renardo Sidney. If the information that Gary Parrish wrote in his “Three Storylines” articles is true, then Mississippi State’s Renardo Sidney may not play this season at all. According to the Sidney family attorney, the NCAA requested additional evidence beyond what the Sidneys gave them two weeks ago — specifically, “records that identify the sources of each [bank] deposit, cellular phone records for every family member since Jan. 1, 2006, records to indicate where every payroll check was deposited, etc.” To an untrained ear, that sounds like the NCAA isn’t buying what the Sidneys are selling. The evidence that the Sidneys previously provided — bank statements and the like — don’t mean a whole lot unless they can show the funds in those accounts are not a product of financial tomfoolery. So, what now for the Sidneys? MSU’s first game is against Rider on Friday night, so their only recourse might be to take things to court, but the NCAA could probably motion up/down/sideways until March to keep Sidney off the floor if it wanted to make a point. Even if Sidney sought injunctive relief in the interim, MSU is unlikely to play Sidney until he’s eligible by NCAA standards. Well, Jarvis Varnado and John Riek still makes for a nasty frontcourt, right?
- Arkansas Suspensions. Courney Fortson and Stefan Welsh were indefinitely suspended by John Pelphrey today for their roles in various discipinary actions over the offseason. Additionally, reserve Marcus Britt will miss six games, freshman Glenn Bryant will miss two games, and walk-on Nick Mason will miss the fall semester. The latter three players were at a fraternity party last month where a student alleged several players raped her. The local prosecutor (who is related to Arkansas brass) said there wasn’t enough evidence to move forward, but the case has now been brought to a special prosecutor for further review.
- Vegas Watch Mammoth Preview. It was finished over the weekend, so here’s the link to the entire thing in one place. The analysis we performed here reflects VW’s vision as to how to project the 2009-10 teams in a quantifiable manner, and we think he’s done a pretty damn good job at developing a formula that properly takes into account returnees plus incoming recruits. Keep an eye on things over there this week as he rolls out a list of the final projected ratings among the BCS conferences (and a few others) sliced and diced in various ways.
- Preaseason Stuff. There’s more out in the last week than we know what to do with, and besides you have our Everything You Need to Know… post to guide you there, but let’s look at some of the better things we’ve seen. Luke Winn has his 16 most entertaining players in America, while Jeff Goodman gives his 65 storylines to watch for this season and even found time to do a little bracket work. Mike DeCourcy encourages us all to buy blue-chip stocks this year and also lists his top storylines and questions. Gary Parrish believes that the Big 12 is the best conference in the land this year, and he also projects a bracket for us while sprinkling around his all-americans. Everybody’s doing this bracket thing these days, including Jerry Palm, whose done it once or twice before. And for good measure, here’s the Fox Sports power rankings.
- Quick Hits. Ken Bone: unplugged. DeCourcy: why cupcakes? Bob Knight: as expected, did not attend his IU Hall of Fame induction over the weekend. Cal Faculty: nonbinding vote to end athletic department subsidies. Scout: top 100 prospects of 2010. Isiah: got his mom’s blessing to coach Monday night. UNC Throwbacks: why would Carolina ever have red in its unis? Jeff Capel: Big 12 is the best. Deniz Kilicli: WVU freshman forward will sit until February! Villanova: How Scottie Reynolds almost ended up at Oklahoma. Dave Odom: your new Maui chairman. ACC Tourney: headed back to the ATL in 2012 (but at Phillips Arena, not the Ga Dome). Luke Apfeld: Vermont player tears ACL again.