- Jeff Eisenberg at The Dagger3 hrs ago
The ACC released its full schedule Wednesday on the eve of the start of college football. Here's a look at five of the things that stood out:
1. Feb. 18 is the can't-miss day on the schedule: That's when Duke and North Carolina square off in Durham for the first of two meetings and when Louisville visits Syracuse for the first time with both being members of the ACC. Since all four programs figure to be contenders for the league crown, those two games could go a long way toward shaping the conference race. Other dates to circle: Louisville at Wake Forest on Jan. 4 in the ACC opener for the Cards and Danny Manning, Duke at Virginia on Jan. 31 in the lone meeting between the two contenders and Duke at Syracuse on Valentine's Day in the next installment of their budding rivalry.
- Jeff Eisenberg at Ball Don't Lie8 hrs ago
As the summer wears on, with training camps and preseason play still off in (what feels like) the distant future, we turn our attention to the past. Join us as we while away a few late-summer moments recalling some of the most scintillating slams of yesteryear, the most thunderous throwdowns ever to sear themselves into our memories. This is Dunk History.
Today, Jeff Eisenberg of The Dagger recalls Vince Carter's stunning slam over Frederic Weis in the 2000 Olympics and how it became the basketball legacy of the dunk's victim.
Many of the victims of the best dunks in NBA history have enjoyed such accomplished careers that being emasculated on national TV is a mere footnote in their careers.
Not so for the man nicknamed "French Toast."
- Jeff Eisenberg at The Dagger9 hrs ago
With all five starters from last year's underachieving 16-16 team having left and few promising bench players ready to inherit more playing time, Oregon State appears headed for a poor 2014-15 season
Rest assured, however, better days may be ahead.
New coach Wayne Tinkle secured a key commitment Tuesday from 6-foot-10 Drew Eubanks, arguably the top Class of 2015 prospect in the state of Oregon. The addition of the three-star center gives Oregon State a chance to assemble a formidable class given the ties the Beavers have to a pair of other top prospects.
- Jeff Eisenberg at The Dagger1 day ago
Even though the NCAA deemed Enes Kanter ineligible to play at Kentucky three years ago, it appears another member of his family may yet get to play college basketball.
Kerem Kanter, Enes' younger brother, has signed with Green Bay and intends to play as a freshman next season, the school announced Tuesday. The younger Kanter is a 6-foot-9 forward who averaged 17 points and 9 rebounds last season at IMG Academy in Florida.
“We are very excited to add Kerem Kanter to our program,” Green Bay coach Brian Wardle said in a school-released statement.
“Kerem is a skilled forward that brings an ability to score from the inside and out. He has a great bloodline of basketball in his family, and we know he is extremely excited to get to Green Bay to pursue his dream of getting a college education and being a Division I player.”
Kanter joins a Green Bay team that dominated the Horizon League this past season but missed the NCAA tournament after being upset in the conference tournament semifinals. The Phoenix lost 7-foot center Alec Brown to the NBA, but they return most of the rest of last season's team, including dynamic guard Keifer Sykes.
- Jeff Eisenberg at The Dagger1 day ago
To find high-level talent willing to come to El Paso, UTEP coach Tim Floyd sometimes must gamble on prospects most high-major programs deem too risky to take.
Some of those players have overcome their academic or behavioral issues to help UTEP win 18 or more games in three of Floyd's four seasons. Others either didn't last long with the program or never even made it to El Paso at all.
The latest UTEP signee never to don a Miners jersey will apparently be Chris Sandifer, a 6-foot-6 shooting guard rated No. 102 in the Class of 2014 by Rivals.com. The former star at Taft High School in Los Angeles failed to qualify academically at UTEP and will instead enroll at Chipola Junior College in Florida, CBSSports.com reported Monday night.
Sandifer joins the growing list of UTEP signees whose academics prevented them from playing for the Miners.
Kenny Kaminski's new destination won't require him to don new colors.
The former top 100 prospect will trade the green and white of Michigan State for the green and white of a school in his home state.
Kaminski will transfer to Ohio University, the Athens Messenger first reported Monday. The 6-foot-8 Medina, Ohio, native has two years of eligibility remaining and is applying for a waiver in hopes that he can play without sitting out next season.
The addition of Kaminski is high-risk, high-reward transfer for new Ohio coach Saul Phillips.
On one hand, Kaminski is a decorated recruit who shot 49.4 percent from behind the arc last season and might have started for the Spartans had he remained in East Lansing. On the other hand, Kaminski ran into academic and behavioral trouble off the court at Michigan State that led coach Tom Izzo to dismiss him from the program three weeks ago.
Not long after arriving at Mission Bay in San Diego on Saturday, basketball prospect Abdul Shanun sent out a tweet that read, "Thank God for a beautiful day."
That simple message of hope reads tragically now given what happened next.
The 17-year-old immigrant from Ghana drowned Saturday afternoon after his kayak capsized in Mission Bay, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported. According to the newspaper, Shanun didn't know how to swim and either didn't wear his life preserver or didn't wear it properly.
The death of Shanun hit those in basketball circles hard.
"Sad to hear of the passing of my bro .. Ima miss you bro. I love you man," tweeted Georgetown commit Jessie Govan, a club teammate of Shanun's with the New York Lightning.
It hasn't taken long for new Auburn coach Bruce Pearl to capitalize on the expiration of the three-year NCAA penalty forbidding him from making contact with recruits.
The day before Pearl's sanctions ended Saturday at midnight, he received a commitment from small forward Danjel Purifoy, Rivals.com's No. 80 recruit in the class of 2015. Two more coveted prospects pledged to come to Auburn soon after Pearl could talk to them for the first time — power forward Horace Spencer, Rivals.com's No. 73 recruit in the Class of 2015, and shooting guard T.J. Dunans, one of the nation's elite junior college players.
The flurry of commitments is the latest sign that the hiring of Pearlis helping Auburn's long-ignored basketball program emerge from irrelevance.
- Jeff Eisenberg at The Dagger5 days ago
The Big Ten released its conference schedule Thursday. With the addition of Maryland and Rutgers creating an even more unbalanced schedule, here are five thoughts on who benefits and who suffers because of the new format:
1. Nobody has a dream slate: When the Big Ten announced its scheduling format to accommodate for the addition of Maryland and Rutgers, there was concern that the unbalanced schedule could tip the league race in favor of a contender with a particularly favorable slate. Big Ten teams will now play five league opponents twice and the rest once, so a team that played Rutgers, Northwestern, Penn State and Purdue twice apiece would theoretically have an advantage this season over one that drew a pair of games apiece against Wisconsin, Michigan, Michigan State and Ohio State. That may come to fruition in the future, but credit the Big Ten for doing a good job avoiding that scenario in year one — at least on paper. Every preseason league title threat faces at least one other projected contender twice and nobody has a breeze of a schedule.
- Jeff Eisenberg at The Dagger9 days ago
Before he regained the strength to move around without a wheelchair or to speak in more than a whisper, Austin Hatch vowed to friends and family that he'd someday fulfill his commitment play basketball for the University of Michigan.
Against all odds, he has delivered on that promise.
Sorry, it's getting a little dusty in here.
More than three years after the second deadly plane crash of his life splintered his family and left him in a coma, Hatch made his Michigan debut Sunday night during the Wolverines' first exhibition game on their preseason tour of Italy. Hatch went scoreless in three minutes, but that hardly detracted from the joy he experienced achieving what doctors said he couldn't.