Auburn Morning Rush: Summer League weekend recap, Kessler officially signs with Utah
Good morning, Tiger fans! It is time to begin your week with the Monday edition of the Auburn Morning Rush.
To begin the day, we dive into the NBA Summer League. Four former Tigers were in action last weekend, and all performed at a high level for their respective clubs.
Next, we give an update on Walker Kessler’s wild journey as a professional athlete. Has he finally settled down?
Finally, we go back to the 2013 football season. Just how difficult was Nick Marshall to stop? A former Texas A&M defensive lineman gives a brutally honest answer.
Here’s the Monday edition of the Auburn Morning Rush:
NBA Summer League Weekend Recap
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – JULY 09: Jabari Smith Jr. #1 of the Houston Rockets brings the ball up the court against the Oklahoma City Thunder during the 2022 NBA Summer League at the Thomas & Mack Center on July 09, 2022 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Four former Tigers were in action this weekend for their respective NBA teams during the Summer League competition.
[autotag]JT Thor[/autotag] and the Charlotte Hornets kicked off the weekend by facing the Indiana Pacers on Friday night. As a part of the starting five, Thor scored five points and grabbed two rebounds in the Hornets’ 96-84 loss to the Pacers.
The third overall selection by the Houston Rockets in the 2022 draft, [autotag]Jabari Smith[/autotag], scored 12 points and pulled down nine rebounds in the Rockets’ 90-88 win over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Saturday night.
[autotag]Sharife Cooper[/autotag] played 18 minutes in the Atlanta Hawks’ 72-66 loss to the Utah Jazz on Saturday night, scoring three points and tallying two assists. Another former Tiger and current member of the Jazz, Walker Kessler, did not play in the game.
[autotag]Jared Harper[/autotag] was the key player off the bench for the New Orleans Pelicans in their 85-68 loss to the Portland Trailblazers on Saturday. In 29 minutes of play, Harper scored 18 points and secured five rebounds.
Kessler officially signs with Utah Jazz
Walker Kessler talks with reporters during the NBA basketball draft combine at the Wintrust Arena Thursday, May 19, 2022, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
What is the record for teams joined before playing a single professional game?
The NBA career of [autotag]Walker Kessler[/autotag] has been nothing short of a whirlwind. Kessler was drafted No. 22 overall by the Memphis Grizzlies in the 2022 NBA Draft. Once drafted by the Grizzlies, his draft rights were immediately shipped to the Minnesota Timberwolves. Just when Kessler began to settle in Minneapolis, the Timberwolves sent him packing to Utah as part of a blockbuster trade that brought center Rudy Gobert to Minnesota.
All of that happened within a span of 13 days.
But, it appears that Kessler is staying put in Utah, as the Jazz has officially announced he has signed with the franchise. The details of the contract have not been released, nor have plans to compete in the NBA Summer League been revealed.
I’m officially a member of the @utahjazz and eager to get to work for you all. Blessed beyond measure, and can’t wait to see you all #TakeNote
— Walker Kessler (@WalkerKessler13) July 10, 2022
Nick Marshall was just too quick
Oct 19, 2013; College Station, TX, USA; Auburn Tigers quarterback Nick Marshall (14) throws the ball against the Texas A&M Aggies during the first half at Kyle Field. Mandatory Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports
It is hard to believe that it has been nine years since quarterback [autotag]Nick Marshall[/autotag] ran [autotag]Gus Malzahn[/autotag]’s high-powered offense to near perfection, leading the Tigers to a BCS National Championship appearance.
In 2012, a year prior to Auburn’s surprising season, the most electrifying offense in the SEC belonged to conference newcomer, Texas A&M. Quarterback Johnny Manziel earned the Heisman Trophy after throwing for 3,706 yards and rushing for 1,410 additional yards while accumulating 47 total touchdowns.
Texas A&M fans noticed a drop in production during the 2013 season, especially from the Aggie defense. A Twitter user asked a member of the 2013 defense, Jay Arnold, the simple question, “why did Texas A&M’s defense not try to stop opponents?” following a re-watch of the 2013 Auburn-Texas A&M game, a game that Auburn won, 45-41 in College Station.
The answer provided by Arnold is about as honest as you could ask for:
I can’t speak for everyone else, but SEC football is hard and sometimes you don’t execute.
All I remember is not being anywhere near athletic enough to stop a zone read ran by Nick Marshall. https://t.co/tpjgYBRtwF
— Jay Arnold (@JArnoldTAMU85) July 10, 2022
Texas A&M was not the only team to have trouble slowing down Auburn’s offense in 2013, as the Tigers rushing attack averaged 328 yards per game during their SEC Championship winning season.