Is it UNC’s fault they are just too good? We see them beat Mississippi Valley State 101-75, and all the critics want to do is point out their terrible outside shooting (5-19) and bad numbers from the free-throw line (16-31). Someone like Brent Arrington drops 33 on them (in 18 shots), and we’re complaining, saying they really aren’t that good. The fact is they did what they had to, and they also still have some pretty good talent. John Henson went for 18 and 14 while Harrison Barnes added 18 of his own … Kentucky only scored 62, but still won by 10 over Old Dominion with Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Darius Miller each scoring 13 points. Kentucky and UNC play on Dec. 3. Can we just skip ahead to that night? … Is there a better backcourt in the country than Jeremy Lamb and Shabazz Napier? Lamb dropped 25 – another big night – in UConn’s 17-point win over Coppin State. But he wasn’t even the star. Napier went OFF, finishing with a triple-double (22 points, 12 rebounds, 13 assists). Coppin State took a 13-point lead early, but no one for the Huskies was really sweating it just because their point guard was so good, so dominant. Perhaps this is the best team in the nation? With their backcourt playing this well, you can make the case … Top 25 teams Alabama, Marquette and Florida State all won as well … Miss Spain much? According to ESPN, Ricky Rubio is considering going back to Spain and signing with another team if there isn’t a season this year. Rubio stated that he’s going to wait until there is “no chance” for the current situation to be resolved before he makes the move overseas. Rubio also told ESPN that he would very much like to go practice with the Gasols again – who both are in Spain practicing with Rubio’s former club team, Barcelona. Bet that makes all you Minnesota fans feel better. What’s colder: the weather in Minnesota, or the way the basketball gods treat T’Wolves fans? … When asked about his son’s thoughts on the current NBA lockout, Doc Rivers told the Boston Globe Austin wasn’t focused on the NBA, but rather getting better as a college basketball player. Doc did tell the Globe however that he wouldn’t mind Austin leaving Duke after one year if he’s ready to play the professional game. All the right words from the Celtics head coach, but something interesting is brewing with Austin Rivers, Duke, the NBA lockout and every other college team with potential one-and-done players – the age limit. Numerous proposals (all of which were shot down) have included age limits for declaring for the NBA draft, a number that may become many fan’s favorite if in fact a deal is ever reached. 20 years of age to declare for the draft is looking more and more likely, and if that age limit is put into place, one-and-done guys all across the country would be forced to stay for a second year. But you know what? Good. What’s bad about letting these young kids mature? And not only physically, but mentally and emotionally. How about we let these kids get better in college, work on the fundamentals, grow into their bodies, mature as individuals. Where’s the harm? And not only do these players gain from such a rule change, but fans and the game itself do well. How great would it be to see all the guys come back for second years? Could you imagine the matchups we would see, how much better March Madness would be (if it can even get any better), how much better the player of the year race would be? How ‘bout we make these kids come back for a second year. How ‘bout we let them get better. Grow as men. Mature on and off the court. Expand their games. Reach their potential. The only problem is here we are preaching this stuff when Sports Illustrated just ran a feature story on Lexi Thompson, a 16-year-old female golfer who quit school so she could play golf all day long, competes professionally and is being celebrated as a potential savior for the sport. Hmmmm … Want the name of a breakout star you drop on your friends to prove you know more about college ball then they do? Meet Jared Cunningham, Oregon State’s junior shooting guard. Cunningham has been absolutely killing it lately, scoring 72 points in his last two games and averaging 26.5 points and 5.3 rebounds per game for the season. But he’s not just one dimensional. Head coach Craig Robinson said that Cunningham has worked hard to expand his game, constantly guarding the best player on the opposing team, getting steals, blocking shots. And in a below-average Pac-12 conference, look for Cunningham to have a monster year … We’re out like Tony Scheffler‘s TD shuffle.
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