Morning Five: 12.09.13 Edition

Posted by nvr1983 on December 9th, 2013


  1. When we hear about Allan Chaney‘s latest setback (a misfiring defibrillator) we hoped that it would be a minor issue, but unfortunately it appears this latest setback led Chaney to announce his retirement. It is an unfortunate end to Chaney’s career given all that he has battled back through (viral myocarditis before being denied medical clearance by Virginia Tech then going to High Point where he was allowed to play) before collapsing on November 24 in a game against Wofford when he defibrillator misfired. We have no idea how much the respective parties — Chaney, his family, and the school — played in him making his final decision, but we wish him the best of luck in his post-basketball life.
  2. We typically do not go for gimmicks, but every year that we fall for Taylor University‘s Silent Night and this year’s edition was no different. For those of you who are not familiar with the tradition, it is held the Friday before fall semester finals week begins. The students at the school remain completely silent until the team scores its tenth point at which point all sorts of craziness happens. To some it may be a little over the top to some, but we will never criticize people showing their enthusiasm for basketball especially when it is done in a constructive way.
  3. With the way that Oregon has been playing so far this season they are going to start to get national recognition. And things could get even better with the new additions to the roster that could make them even more dangerous. In addition to sophomores Dominic Artis and Ben Carter who only have one more game remaining in their nine game suspensions for selling school-supplied shoes, the Ducks may also be adding 4-star power forward Jordan Bell who qualified academically and can start practicing immediately, but might redshirt. Regardless of whether Bell plays this year, the Ducks appear to be one of the top teams in the country and might end up as Arizona’s biggest threat in the Pac-12.
  4. It was a rough week for Stanford and senior guard Aaron Bright. Last week, Bright dislocated his right shoulder during practice and will require season-ending  surgery. That brings the Cardinal body count to three (players out for the year with season-ending injuries). To add insult to injury it appears Bright, who is taking a medical redshirt year to preserve his eligibility, may have to transfer as Stanford’s roster for the 2014-15 season would already be full. Even though we understand it is a numbers game at some level we have a hard time believing that the Stanford staff would not be able to find a way to keep Bright on the team next year.
  5. Heading into an important perception-building home game against Kansas tomorrow night, Billy Donovan appears to finally be turning the corner on getting his roster settled for this season. First, point guard Scottie Wilbekin is due back from the ankle injury he suffered in last week’s loss at Connecticut, offering the Gators some stability at a position that has been nothing short of a headache all season long. Next, according to Gator Country on Sunday, Damontre Harris and the program have officially parted ways. The South Carolina transfer had not suited up at all this season as he tried to fulfill obligations related to his suspension during the offseason, but it appears that he was unable to meet those expectations. The final piece of the puzzle concerns the eligibility of star freshman Chris Walker, who is expected to start practicing with the team as soon as final exams are over next week. With all the players shuffling in and out of the Florida lineup (and roster), we’re sure Donovan will be pleased to see some stability in that regard so he can focus on improving the team he actually has this season.
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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.
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ACC Weekly Five: 06.07.12 Edition

Posted by KCarpenter on June 7th, 2012

  1. The Dagger:  In a series on unbeatable records in college basketball, the Yahoo! Sports blog looks at North Carolina‘s 56-game home winning streak against Clemson. The streak started in 1926 and the record’s persistence is one of the strangest quirks in ACC history, more a testament to chance than dominance or inferiority (though, historically, both of those factors played a part). This article discusses the 2008 showdown where Clemson seemed on the cusp of clear victory only to have the Tar Heels storm back to win and preserve the streak. Though outside the scope of this discussion, the other half of the 2008 series, played in Clemson, was maybe even more exciting if you can ignore the stakes of the streak. In that game, Wayne Ellington played the best game of his college career and hit clutch shot after clutch shot to will UNC to a victory that left the Tigers stunned.
  2. BC Interruption: In transfer news, former Notre Dame player Alex Dragicevich will land at Boston College. Dragicevich is 6’7″ and didn’t particularly stand out during his stint with the Irish. Still, he is a warm body who knows how basketball is played. Right now, this counts as a nice “get” for the undermanned and under-talented Eagles.
  3. NY Daily News: Former Maryland player, Ashton Pankey is headed to Manhattan College. Pankey was actually a key player for the Terrapins, playing valuable minutes, rebounding, and making the most of his limited scoring opportunities. Pankey is transferring to be closer to home due to family and personal reasons, a rationale that could potentially allow him to play next season if the forward is granted an NCAA waiver. One of the more promising big men among the ACC freshmen, Pankey will be a valuable asset to the Jaspers as soon as he is eligible to play.
  4. News and Observer: Leslie McDonald, the North Carolina guard who missed all of the past season because of a ligament tear sustained while playing in the NC Pro-Am summer league, is fully rehabbed and ready to play. McDonald redshirted last year, and his defensive acumen, as well as his sweet shooting stroke promise to help a Tar Heel team that sorely needed his skills last season.
  5. Washington Post: Allan Chaney, the former Virginia Tech player who collapsed during a practice in 2010 and was later diagnosed with viral myocarditis, has been cleared to play by his doctor. Last year, the Virginia Tech athletic department decided that they wouldn’t risk playing him under any circumstances, but that hasn’t deterred Chaney’s hopes. According to the player, a number of other schools have expressed interest in his abilities, and the athletic forward has been giving a return serious thought. Though Chaney expects to finish his undergraduate academic career in Blacksburg, his plans are open for 2013 and a possible one year stint at a school with a graduate program that would allow Chaney to play immediately.
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Morning Five: 08.15.11 Edition

Posted by rtmsf on August 15th, 2011

  1. The talk of the college sports universe throughout the weekend involved the notion of Texas A&M bolting the Big 12 for the (supposedly) greener pastures of the SEC.  On Friday afternoon, it seemed to be nothing more than some wishful thinking on the part of the Aggies.  By Saturday, though, ESPN was reporting that such a move was a done deal and that it could occur as soon as next summer.  Then on Sunday, the SEC pulled the chair out from under its latest paramour, announcing that its committee of presidents and chancellors had met and “reaffirmed [its] satisfaction with the present 12 institutional alignment.”  So what the hell happened here?  How could A&M have been so confident in a place at the table so as to leave itself open to a very public rejection from the SEC, furthering the shame and feelings of inadequacy the school already suffers as a result of the monolithic school 100 miles to its west?  Well, if you read between the lines of the SEC’s statement, you’ll see that the organization carefully left open the possibility of expansion in a way certain to satisfy the legal department.  If TAMU’s Board of Regents approves exploration of such a move on Monday, expect to see things to continue toward the direction of the Aggies to the SEC in relatively short order.  This isn’t over.
  2. North Dakota took its half-decade long fight over its nickname, the Fighting Sioux, to the top of the NCAA food chain on Friday, and still came away with the same result.  The school will have to change its nickname or face banishment from hosting NCAA tournament games in any sport and cannot use the nickname at any NCAA-sponsored events.  Additionally, the Big Sky Conference, which North Dakota hopes to soon join, has made it clear that refusal to change its nickname could jeopardize the school’s consideration for that league.  Today — August 15, 2011 — is the court-imposed deadline put forth by the courts for UND to receive approval from the two Sioux tribes located in the state to justify keeping the name.  Only one of the two gave its approval, and now the school will have to make other arrangements.  For us, it comes down to the two afflicted parties.  If both Sioux tribes were on board with it, we wouldn’t have a problem either; but, apparently, the Standing Rock Sioux were always against the nickname, so we agree with the NCAA and Mark Emmert that it’s probably for the best to scrap it going forward.
  3. We mentioned last week that Virginia Tech refused to clear junior forward Allan Chaney to play next season because of an affliction called viral myocarditis, an inflammation of the heart muscle that can cause scarring.  Despite significant testing at Penn and Virginia hospitals that led to team physicians at VT to state that Chaney has “persistent complications” from the disease, Chaney believes that he can find another school that will let him play.  The option of wearing an internal defibrillator to monitor his heart harkens back to the scary collapse and near-death of former Tennessee forward Emanuel Negedu from a heart condition in 2009.  UT would not allow him to play, but Negedu eventually got another chance at New Mexico last season before retiring from the sport permanently in April.  Chaney mentions only a “2% risk” in his comments about health, but how many of us out there are willing to take a 1 in 50 shot on our mortality every day we step onto a basketball court?  We certainly understand that it’s difficult to give up something that you love to do more than anything else in the world, but we  sincerely hope that he finds peace on this issue and will not push himself toward an outcome that everyone will ultimately regret.
  4. A little transfer news not involving life-threatening heart conditions…  LSU sophomore forward Matt Derenbecker announced over the weekend that he will be transferring to Dayton University, sight unseen.  Derenbecker was a promising player in his only year at LSU, averaging 7/2 in 23 minutes per game for the Tigers.  He becomes the third player to leave Trent Johnson’s program this offseason, though, which begs the continuing question as to whether the former Stanford coach will be able to get it done in Baton Rouge.  After an outstanding first season where his team won the SEC and went to the  Second Round of the NCAA Tournament, his last two years have been unmitigated disasters, having won only five conference games and 22 overall.
  5. The story of how former Kentucky center Josh Harrellson went from a benchwarmer to a key contributor on a Final Four team and an NBA Second Round draft pick is a well-known one, but you can also add citizen sheriff to the list of roles of which we never thought he was capable.  According to WKYT-TV in Lexington, Harrellson and several of his friends encountered a drunk driver in a parking lot over the weekend who was so sloppy that he hit several vehicles trying to get his truck out.  Realizing the danger of having such a person on the road, they leapt into action by jumping onto the moving truck and forcing the driver to stop so that they could take the keys out of the ignition.  It’s an amazing story of heroism on those facts alone, but here’s the clincher — after the truck stopped, they realized that there were young children in the back seat of the vehicle.  Forget playing Jared Sullinger straight-up in the NCAA Tournament — Harrellson and his buddies deserve a medal.
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Allan Chaney Denied Medical Clearance By Virginia Tech

Posted by nvr1983 on August 10th, 2011

Virginia Tech announced today that it was denying transfer Allan Chaney medical clearance due to ongoing medical issues related to his diagnosis of myocarditis (inflammation of the heart) in April 2010. Chaney, who was a 4-star recruit coming out of high school in Connecticut, appeared in 23 games as a freshman at Florida where he averaged 3 points and 2.1 rebounds per game in limited action as he played just 9.8 minutes per game in a season that was marred by injuries and a season-ending suspension, which eventually led to his decision to leave Gainesville. After sitting out the 2009-10 season as a transfer at Virginia Tech expectations were high for Chaney as Hokie fans expected him to help Malcolm Delaney and Jeff Allen get the team back to the NCAA Tournament after a prolonged absence. However, that all changed when Chaney collapsed during an April 2010 workout, which at the time was thought to be due to dehydration, and was later diagnosed as myocarditis.

Complications from myocarditis kept Chaney from wearing a Hokie jersey

While Chaney recovered from the viral myocarditis the resulting scarring around his heart, which reduced his exercise capacity, was concerning enough for team physicians that he was forced to sit out the 2010-11 season and underwent an undisclosed cardiac procedure in May at the University of Pennsylvania. Still, many Hokie fans expected (or hoped) that Chaney would be available to return for the 2011-12 season. In the end, it appears that Chaney was not able to regain enough functional capacity (or there was enough concern for a potentially fatal arrhythmia) for the team doctors to clear him to play “due to persistent complications from myocarditis”. In a statement, coach Seth Greenberg said, “Allan Chaney has been through a great deal in the last year and a half. Everyone involved in our basketball program feels for him. Unfortunately, this rare condition will prevent him from continuing his career here at Virginia Tech. We will do everything in our power to assist Allan as he goes through his next procedure and support him in every way possible.”

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Around The Blogosphere: June 16, 2011

Posted by nvr1983 on June 16th, 2011

If you are interested in participating in our ATB2 feature, send in your submissions to We will add to this post throughout the day as the submissions come in so keep on sending them.

General News

  • 3′s Company | #3 Allan Chaney to Play Next Season: “ has it on good authority that #3 Allan Chaney will suit up for the Hokies next season. The 6’9″, 235 lbs. forward, who has been battling a heart ailment for the last year that kept him off the court, would add a big time low post presence to an inexperienced Virginia Tech team. Word on the street is he may even get back the year he lost due to his condition, perhaps making him just a sophomore next year.” (Tech Hoops)

Read the rest of this entry »

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Checking in on… the ACC

Posted by Brian Goodman on November 23rd, 2010

Matt Patton is the RTC correspondent for the ACC.

A Look Back

  • The ACC looks rough early.  I think I was a little optimistic coming into the season, especially with Virginia Tech.  I definitely underrated Florida State and Maryland marginally (at least so far), but as a whole, play has been underwhelming in the early going.
  • Unfortunately, the ACC wasn’t helped when N.C. State’s Tracy Smith went down with a knee injury.  I really think Smith would have been a major factor in the Georgetown game.  State was absolutely picked apart inside, and Smith’s talent and experience would have been invaluable — especially as things started getting out of hand in the second half.  I’m not sure Smith would have been the difference, but he certainly would have helped significantly.  Smith is expected to be back in around three weeks.  The injuries don’t stop there: Virginia Tech is having major injury issues with J.T. Thompson and Allan Chaney out for the season.  Virginia’s Sammy Zeglinski is out for the first couple of months recovering from knee surgery.  Wake Forest is fighting injuries to Melvin Tabb (mono), Tony Chenault (foot, 8-10 weeks) and Nikita Mescheriakov’s eligibility (not to mention anyone who has suffered through watching them play).
  • In recruiting news, the ACC had a huge signing day.  Duke looks ready to reload with three LOI’s from 5-star recruits Quinn Cook, Austin Rivers and Michael Gbinje (not to mention 4-star Marshall Plumlee).  North Carolina inked two 5-stars in James McAdoo and P.J. Hairston.  Virginia Tech also has a sneaky-good class coming in with four-star recruits Dorian Finney-Smith, Marquis Rankin and C.J. Barksdale.

Player of the Week: Chris Singleton, Florida State: Singleton has been absolutely unbelievable for the Seminoles so far.  Through four games, he’s averaging 19.3 points, 10.3 rebounds, 2.8 blocks and 3.8 steals per contest.  The performance that sealed the deal was his unconventional triple-double against UNC Greensboro (22 points, 11 rebounds, 10 steals, 6 assists and 4 blocks).  If he can keep his scoring up this season, the Seminoles could be a dark horse in the ACC runner-up race.

Power Rankings

  1. Duke (4-0): Through four games, the Blue Devils have been incredible.  Kyrie Irving introduced himself to the college basketball world with nine assists and one turnover against Princeton.  Kyle Singler and Nolan Smith have looked good, not great, but Andre Dawkins and Seth Curry can shoot.  If the Blue Devils catch fire from downtown (and with five players who could shoot 40% from beyond the arc in Singler, Smith, Curry, Dawkins and Irving, that should happen plenty) they’ll be close to unbeatable.  It’s still early, but so far the Blue Devils lead both adjusted offense and adjusted defense in Ken Pomeroy’s ratings. Duke’s ability to get past Marquette in the second half Monday without much from Kyle Singler speaks to their depth across the starting lineup. How will Mason Plumlee build on his big game in Kansas City?
  2. Virginia Tech (2-1): I’m leaving the Hokies here mainly out of respect for Kansas State.  The Hokies have come out flat: they rely too much on Malcolm Delaney and are easily drawn into sloppy play.  There’s a reason Seth Greenberg’s squad didn’t make the tournament last year: they weren’t that good.  I expect Virginia Tech to get better (though losing J.T. Thompson really hurts), but I expected a team that returns all five starters to be ready to go right away.
  3. Florida State (4-0): The Seminoles have a very good defense: color me not surprised.  It’ll be interesting to see how Florida State’s defense evolves as the season progresses, but they’ll get a big test next Sunday against Florida.  If the Seminoles can muster up some solid offense, they’ll be a very tough team to beat this year.  Definitely a tournament-level team, and arguably a top-25 team so far.
  4. N.C. State (3-1): Getting blown out in the second half by Georgetown wasn’t good, but it wasn’t terrible.  N.C. State is a very young team with Tracy Smith, and it’s no surprise they struggled against a veteran Georgetown team with one of the country’s best backcourts (especially if you consider Georgetown’s biggest weakness in the post).  Hopefully, for Sidney Lowe’s sake, the Wolfpack get Smith back before their showdowns with top-25 teams Wisconsin and Syracuse.  In the meantime I expect them to manhandle Fairleigh Dickinson.
  5. Clemson (4-1): The Tigers’ lone loss comes against Old Dominion (one of the top mid-majors in the country), and Clemson made a game of it, only losing by one after an ugly first half.  There’s no doubt they miss Trevor Booker, but Demontez Stitt looks like he’s ready to take on a much bigger offensive role this season.  Consistency will be the biggest question for the Tigers going forward.
  6. Maryland (3-2): I thought Maryland would be totally lost without Greivis Vasquez, but the Terps played Pitt and Illinois down to the last minute.  Gary Williams has done a great job getting this team to such a competitive level very quickly.  Unfortunately, Maryland still turns the ball over a lot, and they haven’t shown an ability to close out big games.  That said, I’m still very impressed with the showing they put up at the 2k Classic against two of the country’s top teams. The Terps would be better served to feed Jordan Williams the ball more than they have.
  7. North Carolina (2-2): This team is having some major growing pains.  Two straight losses to Minnesota and Vanderbilt are not what Tar Heel Nation was expecting out of Harrison Barnes’ debut.  Before you’re too quick to judge Barnes, remember: he’s a freshman (with colossal expectations), and the Heels do not have a legitimate point guard.  If I were Roy Williams, I’d bench Larry Drew II immediately to get some quality time in for frosh Kendall Marshall.  Marshall is the future of the program, and can he really play that much worse than Drew?
  8. Miami (2-2): Miami can deal with losing at Memphis.  And they made a very close game of it.  But getting blown out at Rutgers?  That’s totally unacceptable.  Reggie Johnson (12 points and 14 boards) was the only Hurricane in double figures.  I’m not sure where Durand Scott was, but he needs to step up his game if the Hurricanes don’t want to join the lowest tier of the conference.  Right now, I’m pegging Miami as a horrendous road team that could prove a tough out at home.  They just as easily could be a terribly inconsistent team.  Frank Haith’s seat started warming up this week.
  9. Virginia (2-2): The Cavaliers are the best of the worst this week.  While they notched wins over William and Mary and U.S.C. Upstate, they got blown out by the Pac 10 – first by Stanford, then by #11 Washington.  If it’s possible to have a bad time during a November trip to Hawaii, Virginia has found the way. They’ll try to salvage things against Oklahoma on Tuesday.
  10. Georgia Tech (3-1): 3-1 isn’t that bad, right?  Georgia Tech has looked awful so far-most notably in their blowout loss at Kennesaw State.  The most important question is what was Paul Hewitt doing playing at Kennesaw State in the first place?  What good comes out of that game?  The Yellow Jackets get a chance to prove the doubters (which should be nearly everyone at this point) partially wrong this week with a game against UTEP.
  11. Boston College (2-1): Boston College has got to stop losing to Ivy League teams.  They lost to Yale last week.  Yale isn’t even supposed to be a real competitor in the Ivy League, much less the ACC.  Steve Donahue runs a very different style than Al Skinner, and I’m not sure he or his players have totally adjusted.  It’ll take a few years to get everything optimized to his style of play, but in the meantime he should be avoiding the easy losses. To keep the bad loss from dwelling, the Eagles beat Holy Cross rather soundly.
  12. Wake Forest (2-3): Wake Forest has major issues.  So far they’ve lost to Stetson, been blown out by Virginia Commonwealth, and couldn’t keep up at Winthrop. They check in at a smooth 159th in Ken Pomeroy’s rankings, lowest among any of the “Power Six” conference teams, save DePaul and Auburn.  So far the Demon Deacons miss Ish Smith more than anything: currently they sport a ghastly 25.5% turnover percentage…  That means they turn it over more than once every four possessions.  If Wake can’t improve their offensive execution by conference play, the ACC will have a new conference doormat.

A Look Ahead

The non-con tournaments continue!  Duke will look to make a major statement this week at the CBE Classic in Kansas City with a big game against #4 Kansas State Tuesday. It may as well be a true road game with the Wildcats’ campus just two hours away.  Wake Forest, Virginia, Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech also participate in early-season tournaments throughout the week.  Most importantly, the Big 10-ACC Challenge is right around the corner (starting November 29).  While the Big 10 looks like a far superior conference on paper, the basketball gods were very kind in placing games (Florida State, Clemson, Virginia Tech and Duke all play at home) and somehow Wake Forest drew Iowa and Boston College drew Indiana.  Even if the ACC doesn’t win, there are a ton of great games, so make sure to get it on your calendar early.

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