Early Midnight Madness at Kansas and Indiana Tipped Off Over the Weekend

Posted by rtmsf on October 7th, 2013

It’s a little strange to be talking about Midnight Madness celebrations during the first full week of October, but with the NCAA’s new rule allowing teams to begin formally practicing in late September, that’s the world we now find ourselves in. For reasons not limited to an overlap with football, local marketing, continuity and several others, many schools have decided to continue holding their rowdy open practices during the traditional mid-October window approaching the start of the regular season (ESPNU, for example, will show portions of nine Madness events during a four-hour telecast on the night of October 18). So while we’ll need to wait to see the next-generation basketball extravaganzas at the likes of Kentucky, Duke, Syracuse, Memphis, Connecticut, Michigan State, North Carolina and a host of others scheduled in the next few weeks, a couple prominent basketball schools took advantage of the new calendar and got an early start Friday night.

Wiggins' Later Aerial Show Trumped His Suit & Tie Dance Moves (credit: ESPN.com)

Wiggins’ Later Aerial Show Trumped His Suit & Tie Dance Moves (credit: ESPN.com)

Kansas‘ “Late Night in the Phog” and Indiana‘s “Hoosier Hysteria” celebrated the return of balls bouncing on the hardwood at a pair of schools where such a thing never really leaves fans’ minds. And while the cheesy dances, the campy skits and the promotional giveaways at these events has a carnival barker feel to it, fans tolerate all the nonsense just to catch a glimpse of their new team in action. Did the talented but slight power forward put on that additional 20 pounds during the summer? Has the point guard’s sometimes shaky decision-making improved? Were all those rumors about the transfer wing dominating practice look legitimate? And what about those freshman — are they as good as advertised? These and many other questions are nearly impossible to answer only a few days into the start of a long college hoops season, but fans know talent when they see it, and they saw it in spades in Lawrence and Bloomington over the weekend.

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Who’s Got Next? More Eligibility Issues, Prospects Discuss Midnight Madness, Big Men Make Big Commitments

Posted by Josh Paunil on October 19th, 2011

 

Who’s Got Next? is a weekly column by Josh Paunil, the RTC recruiting guru. We encourage you to check out his website dedicated solely to college basketball recruiting, National Recruiting Spotlight, for more detailed recruiting information. Once a week he will bring you an overview of what’s going on in the complex world of recruiting, from who is signing where among the seniors to who the hot prospects are at the lower levels of the sport. If you have any suggestions as to areas we’re missing or different things you’d like to see, please let us know at rushthecourt@yahoo.com.

Lead Story: Trio of Class of 2011 Prospects Experiencing Eligibility Issues

This Is Probably How Bill Self Reacted When His Two Top Freshmen Were Ruled Ineligible.

Kansas Duo Out For 2011-12 Season, Louisville’s Blackshear In Danger. Kansas freshmen small forward Ben McLemore  and power forward Jamari Traylor were ruled ineligible by the NCAA, head coach Bill Self announced Friday. The pair of forwards were declared partial qualifiers meaning they can’t take part in any team activities until the beginning of the second semester and can’t participate in any games in the upcoming basketball season. This comes as a shocker since the Jayhawks’ coaching staff thought the duo would indubitably qualify although this isn’t the first time Kansas has had trouble with freshman qualifying. Just last month, the NCAA deemed freshman power forward Braeden Anderson a partial qualifier who can’t accept a scholarship for the 2011-12 school year. Louisville freshman shooting guard Wayne Blackshear is also undergoing eligibility issues. Although Cardinal head coach Rick Pitino remains optimistic regarding Blackshear’s chances of being cleared, this isn’t the first time a Louisville freshman faced eligibility issues either. Last month, shooting guard Kevin Ware (yes, that Kevin Ware) was ruled ineligible for the year although he could play games in the spring semester if his SAT scores increase (which he’ll be re-taking next week).

What They’re Saying [About Midnight Madness]

We’ve had a lot of coverage here at RTC on Midnight Madness from the best events to the best dunks and the best stories via Twitter, but now we get to take a look at what the best prospects in the country had to say about the celebrations to kick off the college basketball year.

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