Posted by rtmsf on July 14th, 2011
- How about a smidge of conference realignment in your summertime news feed? The WAC is expected to add Texas-Arlington as its tenth school later this week, compensating for its recent loss of Boise State and its pending loss of Nevada. Well, maybe compensating is a bit of an overstatement given the power of those two programs, especially the Broncos on the gridiron, but UTA has one thing that the schools located in Boise and Reno do not — an insanely deep and talented local recruiting pool. The football and basketball talent in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area dwarfs the entire states of Idaho and Nevada in a given year, so the WAC is clearly hoping that Arlington is a sleeping giant for the next decade. [ed. note: didn’t mean to imply that UTA has a football program currently, because they don’t; but that’s clearly something the WAC and UTA are considering with this invitation]
- The NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Selection Committee will have a new chairman, Xavier athletic director Mike Bobinski. He will not take over for current chairman, UConn AD Jeff Hathaway, until next summer, whereupon he’ll take control of the committee for the 2012-13 season. As we’re all aware, the chairman’s biggest role is to step in front of the television cameras minutes after the release of the NCAA Tournament field and defend his committee’s selections. Some have performed well in this role, while others, including last year’s chairman, Ohio State AD Gene Smith, failed miserably in clearly explaining the differences between teams chosen versus those who were left out.
- Yesterday we mentioned the LeBron James Skills Academy when referring to Darius Johnson-Odom’s team defeating the camp namesake’s team twice over the course of the week. DJO wasn’t the only collegian to have made waves last week, though, as Connecticut’s Shabazz Napier, Ohio State’s Jared Sullinger, Kentucky’s Anthony Davis, Kansas’ Thomas Robinson and many others were evaluated by NBADraft.net during the event. Also of interest was some of the discussion involving high school superstars in the next two years of classes, particularly Jabari Parker, a rising junior who many believe is a future #1 overall pick in the mold of Carmelo Anthony.
- News that Michigan recruit Austin Hatch — the high schooler in the Class of 2013 who lost his father and stepmother in a plane crash on June 24 — is recovering from said accident is music to our ears. According to a blog post by his extended family, Hatch is “healing with the loving care of medical experts! Austin even has his blue “Kobe” shoes on (size 15) and looks ready to work.” We’ll certainly forgive the Kobe footwear so long as he makes a full recovery, and that would without question be one of the best stories of this entire offseason. Queue up the most inspiring player award for next year’s ESPYs. Speaking of which…
- This is getting ridiculous. One day after we noted that everybody’s favorite Mormon, Jimmer Fredette, had a horse named after him, the consensus 2010-11 NPOY walked out with an ESPY for the Best Male College Athlete of the year. Connecticut’s Kemba Walker, Auburn’s Cam Newton, Miami (OH)’s Andy Miele (hockey), and Cornell’s Rob Pannell (lacrosse) were the other nominees. Of course, we’re just teasing… we loved The Jimmer as much as anyone else throughout his prolific career. The only other college basketball-related winner was in the Upset category, where the VCU Rams took home the ESPY for their unforgettable five-game run to the Final Four last season.