Morning Five: 02.13.12 Edition

Posted by nvr1983 on February 13th, 2012

  1. Even with all of the movement in conference realignment we have rarely been privy to the details and backroom dealing involved in these deals. Kyle Veazey of The Commercial Appeal fills in many of those gaps with his excellent story of the days leading up to Memphis joining the Big East. Even if you are opposed to realignment and all that it stands for (a money grab), it is an interesting read at some of what was involved in pulling the move to the Big East off. It is unlikely that you will find a more detailed piece about these type of moves.
  2. There were plenty of big upsets over the weekend with a number of highly ranked teams losing including a national title contender losing at home. Still it seems like one team that was considered among the nation’s elite at the beginning of the month has fallen off harder than any other and Andy Glockner is all over how Baylor has fallen apart. While we have all had our reservations about Scott Drew‘s “coaching tendencies” the amount of talent and a few impressive early-season victories were enough to seduce us into believing that this could be the year that they put it together. We found it a little ridiculous to write off North Carolina after one horrible loss (at Florida State) so some might find it strange to write off a team that has only lost to two top 10 squads albeit two times each, but something doesn’t feel right about this team and Glockner does a good job summarizing some of what it is.
  3. It appears that the NCAA is getting more serious about enforcing its rules as it released a new proposal for stiffer penalties. A working draft obtained by USA Today shows just how stiff those penalties could be (executive summary available here). While the proposed penalties are harsh, what you see is just a proposal. Frankly, we would be shocked if the NCAA were to go through with this proposal and actually enforce the rules as they appear to be set forth as it would result in actually punishing its member schools instead of going after some teenagers. We fully expect these proposals to either get voted down or enforced in such a way that they are rarely doled out except to the most egregious offenders.
  4. One school that is probably thankful that those stiffer penalties are not currently in effect is Connecticut. The Huskies are currently trying to bargain their way into the 2013 NCAA Tournament after repeatedly having low APR scores. Now it has a new athletic director in Warde Manuel to help guide it in what is hopefully a new direction. While Manuel’s quotes and the school’s statements are rather trite, the school is hoping that he can continue to do what he appeared to do at Buffalo where he was beginning to turn around the program both in terms of on-field and in-class performance.
  5. Air Force is currently under an interim head coach, but if columnist David Ramsey of The Gazette in Colorado Springs had his way current Denver assistant A.J. Kuhle would be the Falcons’ next coach. Ramsey notes that Kuhle not only has experience at the school helping lead the team to the NCAA Tournament and then helping Denver into one of the more surprising mid-majors this season although they had tailed off lately. The school says that the competition for its full-time head coaching position is open and that Kuhle would be considered. One thing to note is that Kuhle’s age as he is just 29 years-old and if he would be the youngest head coach in men’s Division I basketball if he were to be selected.
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