As a result of my 12-day cameo on our Olympics blog and my long weekend on the north coast of California, The Dagger has gone unusually dormant the past two weeks.
To get us back in the swing of things, here are some quick belated thoughts on a handful of noteworthy college hoops stories that I've neglected.
1. Newly hired Villanova assistant Doug Martin resigned the day after ESPN.com revealed he lied on his resume when he claimed he had played at Wisconsin Green Bay under Dick Bennett in the early-1990s. In reality, Martin appears to have spent four seasons at NAIA Viterbo University in LaCrosse, Wis., where he averaged 2.6 points a game. Embellishing a resume is never a wise choice, but Martin's error in judgment is especially foolish. Unlike other coaches who have lied about having a bachelor's degree, Martin exaggerated his basketball prowess, something totally unnecessary for him to land the Villanova job. Wildcats coach Jay Wright was most interested in Martin because of his ties to the Team Takeover summer program and talent in the Baltimore-DC-Northern Virginia corridor.
2. ESPN released its 2012-13 College GameDay schedule Wednesday, and the matchups are tantalizing to say the least. My top four: 1. North Carolina at NC State on Jan. 26 in a game that should go a long way to determining if the Wolfpack can live up to their hype. 2. Michigan at Indiana on Feb. 2 in a battle of perhaps the two best teams from the nation's strongest conference. 3. Arizona at UCLA on March 2 in a game that should have Pac-12 championship and NCAA seeding implications. 4. Syracuse at Georgetown on March 9 in the final Big East meeting between the two longtime rivals.
3. Given that Mark McLaughlin had bounced between six schools in the past five years, perhaps it should be no surprise that his Washington tenure lasted a mere four months. McLaughlin, the national junior college player of the year last season, left Washington last week without ever donning a Huskies jersey. The impetus for McLaughlin's abrupt exit remains unclear but the impact is obvious. Not having a kid who projected as an all-league performer by his senior season will make it harder for Washington to replace the scoring of NBA-bound Terrence Ross and Tony Wroten and remain competitive at the top of the Pac-12.
4. Only two college players with eligibility remaining represented their countries in the Olympics this year, but both managed to make an impact in London. Saint Mary's point guard Matthew Dellavedova, the reigning West Coast Conference player of the year, averaged 7.3 points and 4.5 assists per game as a starter for Australia. He played alongside ex-Gaels guard Patrick Mills, the leading scorer in the tournament. College of Charleston guard Andrew Lawrence was the other current college standout in London. After playing sparingly for host Great Britain in his first two games, he averaged almost 24 minutes in his final three games and tallied six points and six assists in a win over China.