Posted by Nate Kotisso on March 13th, 2013
- It’s finally game day. The Big 12 tournament gets under way later today and Iowa State coach Fred Hoiberg joins basically every other Big 12 coach in saying, “Any team can win it this year.” Maybe his Cyclones are the ones do it. They’ve beaten Kansas State, Oklahoma and Oklahoma State already. If you remember, ISU was a desperation three-pointer and an incorrect offensive foul call from sweeping the season series away from Kansas. We shall see.
- Speaking of Iowa State, forward Anthony Booker apologized for giving an obscene gesture to the Mountaineers’ student section during Saturday’s game against West Virginia. Booker committed a flagrant foul and was sent to the bench by coach Fred Hoiberg with 5:40 left in the second half. There, he gave the one-finger salute, initially disguising it as simply resting his hand on his chin. In a statement released by Iowa State, Booker cites him getting “caught up in the emotions” of the game and realizes it “was a poor decision.” His actions violated the Big 12’s rules on sportsmanship but the league has given ISU their blessing in keeping Booker eligible. The Big 12 now considers the mattered “closed.”
- Texas Tech AD Kirby Hocutt hasn’t announced what he’ll do with the position of head basketball coach. But we know interim coach Chris Walker will be considered for the job. “Chris Walker has done an excellent job considering the circumstances that he accepted when he took the interim role. That said, there’s not one thing I believe Chris Walker could have done any differently or any better over the course of the basketball season,” Hocutt said. Walker has increased the Red Raiders’ win total by two games overall and in conference play. If Texas Tech decides to go with someone other than him, it will be their fourth different coach in four seasons. Just as in the situation with Kevin Ollie at UConn, I believe their permanent head coach is already in Lubbock; he just needs the interim tag removed.
- While players like Marcus Smart, Le’Bryan Nash, and Markel Brown grab all the headlines and highlights for 23-7 Oklahoma State, there has to be a bring-your-lunch-pail-to-work kind of guy who does the little things to help patch wins together. That guy for the Pokes is Michael Cobbins. Despite starting the season on the injury list, he has returned to a starter’s role. In addition to averaging seven points, six rebounds and 1.5 blocks per game, Cobbins was named to the first team all-Big 12 Defensive Team. A lot of people like the Cowboys as a sleeper pick in this year’s Big 12 Tournament, and if they are, Cobbins will be a big reason why.
- Here is a piece that will make you and I jealous that we aren’t college athletes. SportsBusiness Journal has kept a tally of the cool amenities that all the teams participating in the conference or NCAA Tournaments will receive. Compared to the other power six conferences, it looks like Big 12 teams will have a plethora of items offered such as a Canon Powershot camera, different models of watches and even a Samsung Galaxy tablet. The conference with the most to choose from appears to be the SEC who gives players the option of taking Beats by Dre headphones, a 16GB iPod Touch with music card, or a Sony Blu-Ray disc player with WiFi. At least we now know why Texas A&M and Missouri left for the SEC.