Morning Five: 10.12.10 Edition

Posted by rtmsf on October 12th, 2010

  1. Unfortunately, there will be more and more of this over the next few weeks as players get back to full practice sessions.  Penn State forward Sasa Borovnjak injured his knee last week during a workout and will have to miss the 2010-11 season due to a torn ACL.  This leaves head coach Ed DeChellis with only two returning players taller than 6’8, a proposition fraught with pitfalls in the rough-and-tumble Big Ten.
  2. Mike DeCourcy brings up the legal doctrine of respondent superior in a roundabout way in describing how the NCAA might evaluate UConn’s (and Jim Calhoun’s) defenses to over $14,000 in impermissible benefits.  His quote: “your program, your problem” rings true, and we wonder if we’re starting to look at a potentially ugly situation where the longtime coach who essentially built the program from scratch doesn’t know when it’s time to move on for the betterment and long-term stability of said program.
  3. Luke Winn ranks his top sixteen backcourts for the upcoming 2010-11 seasonDuke is quite obviously #1, with Michigan State, Georgetown and Villanova coming next in order.  Sounds about right.
  4. Fanhouse does a nice prognosticative (?) roundup of the major preseason publications that are already on the newsstands, finding that there’s (as always) a good deal of groupthink involved.  Not necessarily a bad thing, as last year’s Final Four teams were all ranked in the preseason top eleven of the AP poll, but we’re partial to publications that take a bit of a chance, and Blue Ribbon’s pick of Ohio State to get to the Four behind Jon Diebler, David Lighty, William Buford and Jared Sullinger is what we’re talking about.
  5. This is a good read from Steve Irvine at The Birmingham News about UAB’s Aaron Johnson, the Blazers’ senior leader and point guard who has experienced more than his share of ups and downs growing up in a tough Chicago neighborhood with eleven (!!!) brothers and sisters.  He’s set to graduate next spring and already has his sights on giving back to his family if he’s fortunate enough to find a professional paycheck somewhere down the line.  The 5’9 wisp of a player who averaged 10/5 APG last season will have trouble finding steady work stateside, but with his work ethic and perseverence we figure he’ll find that paycheck eventually.  Stories like this get us every time, so we’re definitely rooting for the kid.
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