Morning Five: 07.15.10 Edition

Posted by rtmsf on July 15th, 2010

  1. The annual ESPYs were held last night in Los Angeles, and there were a few college basketball-relevant winners in the mix.  The most notable was in the Best Upset category, with Northern Iowa’s elephant-sized win over top-ranked Kansas in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.  Duke’s men’s athletic program was named the best collegiate sports program, undoubtedly in no small part due to the hoops Devils’ fourth national title in Indy, while the best Male College Athlete was Kentucky’s John Wall.
  2. A brilliant idea from our friends over at College Chalktalk.  To honor John Wooden’s lifetime of humanitarianism and excellence, CCT has had the UCLA coaching staff in addition to several other notable teachers (such as Rick Barnes, Roy Williams, Tom Izzo, and Tubby Smith) give their thoughts on a particular block of the Pyramid of Success.  Our favorite so far: Bobby Hurley’s piece on Alertness.
  3. Speaking of Wooden, the family of the exalted coach has decided to continue with the Wooden Classic in 2010, the seventeenth edition of the event.  Rebuilding UCLA will play Pac-10 pass-over BYU, while St. Mary’s and local Big West favorite Long Beach State will tip the other matchup.
  4. Jason Jeffries, the former assistant director of ticket operations at Kansas, has pleaded guilty and is cooperating with federal authorities to identify if any other principals were involved and what, if any, crimes may have occurred.  But the most interesting part of this story is that the federal judge assigned to his case  (Wesley E. Brown) got the job when all three Topeka federal judges recused themselves for no reason.  Even odder, Brown, at 103 years young, is the oldest sitting judge in the entire federal system.  During the hearing, he even made mention of “the Twitter,” a creation that was barely a year old when Brown hit triple digits.  Amazing stuff.
  5. In Robert Tuchman’s list of his favorite ten Sporting Events You Must See Live, there are two relating to college sports.  One is fairly obvious — Michigan vs. Ohio State football in the Big House; but the other one isn’t Duke-UNC in Cameron or even the Final Four.  It’s Kentucky’s Big Blue Madness event, taking place on the first Friday after October 15 every year.  Bold choice.
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Morning Five: 07.08.10 Edition

Posted by jstevrtc on July 8th, 2010

  1. Behold, the power of KenPom. On his blog, Mr. Pomeroy lists the ten most unlikely wins of last season in a two-part post, but don’t be surprised if you don’t remember a lot of them.  It’s a great read, and the statistics add to the wonderment, but this is not necessarily a list of big upsets like Pennsylvania over Cornell, or Northern Iowa over Kansas. By “unlikely wins,” he means games in which one team got down by a large amount and had an incredibly low probability of coming back to win, but did.  Great stuff as usual.
  2. Somebody please explain to us why this isn’t being televised.  On September 18th, Bob Knight will be roasted by the likes of Steve Alford, Isiah Thomas, and a few rivals of Knight’s from his coaching days.  If this is going to be a real, honest roast and the speakers plan to get in some good licks on The General, we’d like to watch this for two reasons:  first, to watch Knight make mental notes of who’s saying what about him so he can keep it on file in his brain; second, because this thing is going down at a casino, to be privy to the conversations that would happen if these guys get good and lubricated around a blackjack table at three in the morning.
  3. In a story appearing on a blog of the Birmingham News, one of Eric Bledsoe’s relatives and a family friend claimed yesterday that they — and not Bledsoe’s high school coach, Maurice Ford — helped pay the rent for Bledsoe and his mother during Bledsoe’s senior year of high school.  Also, the landlady of that property is also disputing her account of the situation originally published by the New York Times, which broke the story over a month ago raising the possibility that Ford had injured Bledsoe’s amateur status by assisting Bledsoe and his mother by paying their rent on occasion.
  4. Two ex-Kansas athletic department officials have now been charged in the federal probe of the KU ticket-scalping debacle.  Last week, former assistant director of ticket operations Jason Jeffries was charged with “misprision of a felony” for his role in the scandal, and yesterday former assistant AD for sales and marketing Brandon Simmons received the same charge.
  5. The Pac-10 couldn’t be any worse next year than it was last year, could it?  It just has to be better…right?  Well,’s Ann Killion isn’t bullish that the conference’s final season in its ten-team form will be any better than the 2009-2010 edition.
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