SEC Weekly Five: 06.08.12 Edition

Posted by Brian Joyce on June 8th, 2012

  1. Let’s talk scheduling, but enough about the soap opera between Kentucky and Indiana. There’s a new drama between Syracuse and Arkansas, and it turns out to be much ado about nothing. Syracuse originally refused to play in Fayetteville, but has relented to the powers that be and will play Mike Anderson‘s Razorbacks after all. “We discussed our concerns regarding Syracuse’s participation in the SEC/Big East Challenge with the conference and have come to an agreement on the logistics of the game,” Syracuse athletic director Daryl Gross said in a statement. “The Big East Conference will work with us to assist in our on-conference scheduling for the 2012-13 season.” Not sure that Syracuse ever had a choice in the matter, but good to see everyone in agreement.
  2. Guards Jelan Kendrick and Maurice Aniefiok are leaving the Ole Miss program, according to a spokesman for the Rebels. Aniefiok averaged just 1.5 points and 0.8 rebounds per game in only 6.9 minutes per game. He struggled from the field shooting just 25.8 percent. Kendrick, a former McDonald’s All American, averaged 5.1 points, 2.2 rebounds, and 1.7 assists per game off the bench. Kendrick showed promise on the court, but struggled with off the court issues and with his relationship with coach Andy Kennedy.
  3. Welcome to the SEC, Missouri and Texas A&M. And how does the conference ensure a collegial  environment? By throwing a party, of course. However, the official welcome is set to expire soon. Missouri opens up football play with Georgia on September 8, and Tigers head football coach Gary Pinkel provided advice that could be relevant in college basketball this season as well. “I understand everyone is going to want to watch how A&M and Missouri do, coming from the Big 12 into this league. My big thing, when you’re new like we are, you’ve got to earn respect. That’s what we’re going to try to do.” Missouri instantly joins Kentucky and Florida at the top of the SEC power rankings this year in basketball, so the respect factor may come much quicker on the hardwood for the Tigers.
  4. Tennessee standout Jarnell Stokes has been named as a finalist for the U18 USA Men’s Basketball National Team. Committee chair Jim Boeheim spoke of the difficulty in making selections saying, “You had 23 guys who all are really good players, there wasn’t a bad player here. To get down to 12 is going to be difficult but I think we’re going to end up with a really good athletic team that is going to be very well coached. I think we’ve got an unbelievable coaching staff. I think we’ve got guys that have won, been winners, won state championships, and I think they’ll represent USA Basketball extremely well in this tournament.” Florida Gators coach Billy Donovan serves as the head coach for the team, which will make its final roster cuts on June 12.
  5. If you were a head basketball coach and every SEC head coaching position was open and available to you, which would you choose? Well, ESPN’s college basketball gurus made their choices and Kentucky, Florida, and Missouri top the list as desirable positions while Ole Miss, Auburn, and South Carolina finish out the bottom of the pack. No major gripes here on the order, but the placement of one school, in particular, was interesting. Mississippi State has been relatively successful recently, yet they rank number 11 on the list. I agree with the reasoning behind the placement, but if this is all true, why chase off Rick Stansbury? He enabled the Bulldogs to compete in the SEC and he recruited well for what we are now calling a bottom tier SEC basketball job. Sounds like Mississippi State was exceeding expectations with a coach at the level of Stansbury.
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SEC Morning Five: 12.01.11 Edition

Posted by Brian Joyce on December 1st, 2011

  1. Wednesday brought great news for the Florida Gators as forward Erik Murphy will not require surgery on his injured knee. “The meniscus tear was from when he hurt it his sophomore year in high school,” coach Billy Donovan said. “It looks like this was just a bone bruise. We’re hoping to have him back in a week to 10 days.” Murphy has averaged 10 points per game for the Gators this season, and has been pivotal in pick-and-pop situations with Florida’s quick guards because of his excellent three-point shooting. He is shooting 57.1% from beyond the arc this year in 14 attempts. It appears that Murphy could play against Arizona next week on December 7.
  2. The University of Alabama student newspaper points out that the Crimson Tide have won 24 straight home games in Coleman Coliseum dating back to February 27, 2010. That winning streak is in jeopardy tonight when Alabama plays Georgetown as part of the Big East/SEC Challenge. The Alabama players credit the fans with providing a home court advantage in Tuscaloosa. “Our fans have been great these last couple of games and last year coming in and giving us excitement and energy, cheering for us in and out every game,” junior forward Tony Mitchell said. The Tide and Hoyas will be one of the most exciting games of the week Win or lose, Alabama’s smothering 2-3 zone will serve as the Hoyas’ best tune-up for Syracuse’s famed 2-3 zone once Big East play begins.
  3. A long scoring drought in the second half against Colorado was the nail in the coffin for the Georgia Bulldogs. The Dogs finally made their first basket of the second half with 12:34 remaining on the clock. Georgia had similar droughts of eight minutes in a loss against California and five minutes in a loss to Xavier. Two issues that could be causing the scoreless spurts for the Dogs are the reliance on outside shooting for the offense to be successful and the expectation for freshman Kentavious Caldwell-Pope to do a majority of the scoring. Georgia needs to find another element to its offense if they are to avoid lengthy stretches without points going forward.
  4. The Daily Mississippian tells the story of Ole Miss guard Maurice Aniefiok. Aniefiok grew up in Nigeria never having played basketball. He played his senior year of high school at Huntington Prep in West Virginia while developing his offensive skills. Ole Miss head coach Andy Kennedy has been happy with Aniefiok’s adjustment to the college game thus far. “I think first and foremost, him understanding that is a huge step,” Kennedy said of the adjustment. “His attitude is great. Day in and day out, like all of our freshmen, he wants to learn, wants to get better and gives us the necessary effort. That is one area we have not had to coach with this group: effort.” Aniefiok has had difficulty shooting thus far going 26.7% from the field and 20% from three-point range. However, Aniefiok’s limited exposure to basketball means he should be a player to keep an eye on over the next few years as he begins to develop his offensive game. Kennedy likes the 6’5″ guard’s play so much that he is playing him over 14 minutes per game so far this season.
  5. A source tells Kentucky Sports Radio that Kentucky is considering a plan that would eliminate the Kentucky-North Carolina series for the immediate future. You may remember from earlier this week that John Calipari asked Big Blue Nation which rivalry the passionate fan base would like to drop from the schedule if UK felt it needed to create space for two additional SEC games (with the addition of Missouri and Texas A&M). The contract with the Tar Heels ends after the game on Saturday, and the Cats apparently would like to take a year off from the series and revisit renewing the series at a later point. A quick glance at the comments section of the article on KSR reveals that Kentucky fans are not exactly thrilled with the potential move. Saturday’s match-up between Kentucky and North Carolina doesn’t need any more hype as Lexington will be rocking regardless.
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Around The Blogosphere: February 22, 2011

Posted by nvr1983 on February 22nd, 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.

Top 25 Games

  • #6 Kansas 92, Oklahoma State 55: “Kansas got some good news and some bad news headed into Monday nights game against Oklahoma State. Thomas Robinson would return to the court ahead of schedule, but the Jayhawks would be without the services of junior guard Tyshawn Taylor due to suspension. As for the performance on the court, Monday night was all good news for the Jayhawks as they cruised past an overmatched Oklahoma State Cowboy team.” (Rock Chalk Talk)

Pre-Game Analysis

  • Virginia Tech at Wake Forest: “The Magnificent Seven make their debut Tuesday as the Hokies try and pick up a road win in Winston-Salem against the lowly Deacs. This, plain and simple is a MUST WIN game. Must win to stay in the race for an ACC Tournament bye. Must win to keep NCAA Tournament hopes alive. Must win to keep Saturday meaningful as Gameday comes to the ‘Burg for the first time for hoops… oh, and Duke will be there, too.” (Tech Hoops)

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Recruiting Rumor Mill: 11.08.10 Edition

Posted by nvr1983 on November 8th, 2010

Just when you figured that the Recruiting Rumor Mill would start to slow down one teenager start makes news by changing his mind about having previously changed his mind while another does so by deciding to go to college early.

  • The biggest news of the week was of course Myck Kabongo deciding that he did want to go to Texas after all. We are going to wait until he signs on the dotted line before we go ahead and write it down in ink. Fool us once. . .
  • Rutgers commit Kadeem Jack, who has already graduated from high school, but opted to take a prep year, has decided that he wants to go to Rutgers sooner rather than later and will reportedly enroll there in January. He tried talking the coaches into letting him play this year, but they talked him out of it and he will play for Scarlet Knights in the fall of 2011 as previously anticipated.
  • Tyler Adams, who made news by backing out of his commitment to Duke, has committed to Georgetown, which shouldn’t be that surprising since Adams attended Georgetown’s Midnight Madness even when he was still committed to Duke.

    Tyler Adams: The Player Who Turned Down Coach K

  • Speaking of Duke they landed a commitment from Quinn Cook, one of the top point guards in this year’s class. Normally this would be bigger next except Duke already has a commitment from Austin Rivers, the top guard in the class. And they also have Kyrie Irving, Andre Dawkins, and Seth Curry, all of whom will have eligibility left after this season although Irving could be gone after this year.
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