What an end to a great Big East Tournament last night as UConn beat Louisville by three, 69-66, in an intense, up-and-down slugfest at MSG. The battle itself felt like it boiled down to the Kemba Walker/Peyton Siva matchup. Players stepped up on both sides, but it felt like those two were involved in almost every big play, whether it be scoring (Kemba had 19, Siva 13), setting up teammates or keeping the tempo at a blistering pace (they are clearly two of the fastest guards in the nation) … As Kemba was imposing his will in the second half and drawing foul after foul, Jay Bilas relayed that Rick Pitino was telling the refs that “Kemba Walker is not Michael Jordan.” When he was told about Pitino’s quote after the game, Kemba replied, “I’m not Michael Jordan, I’m Kemba Walker”… Kemba finished with 130 points in his five games â€“ a Big East record â€“ and was the easy choice for tourney MVP … So how does this UConn run change the way you look at the Huskies as an NCAA team? Sweet 16? Further? … Think Louisville’s Mike Marra will have nightmares about last night’s game for the rest of his life? Read More »
To say the Big East is pretty tough is like saying Wiz Khalifa smokes a little weed sometimes.
While the company line going into this college basketball season said the Big Ten was the strongest conference in the nation, the Big East has reclaimed its rightful place: At the moment, nine of the Big East’s 16 teams are ranked in the Associated Press Top 25 poll, from No. 3 Syracuse to No. 25 Cincinnati. Read More »
Five NCAA teams that got my attention this past weekend for various reasons:
1. Michigan State (7-3)
Considering the Detroit Pistons’ fall from NBA grace and Michigan State’s rise to NCAA elite, I’m not sure if Saturday’s doubleheader at The Palace of Auburn Hills was meant to showcase Pistons/Raptors as the main event or the undercard. Before the Pistons blew a 25-point lead and lost their game, the Spartans barely hung on to beat unranked Oakland. Read More »
JOHN CALIPARI (by A. Macaluso)
When it comes to family, no one is closer than the Italians. You used to be able to say the same about John Calipari and his predecessor, Rick Pitino. Both coaches have known each other ever since they worked together at Five Star Camp. Both head coaches were actually friends in the beginning, with Pitino helping Calipari land the head coaching position at Massachusetts in 1988. Read More »
As far as personalities go, Tony Wroten Jr. is a star in the making. The Garfield High School (Seattle, Wash.) senior guard is one of the Top-20 prep players in the nation, and only brings more attention to himself with his made-for-TV demeanor off the court.
Wroten is scheduled to announce his college decision on Thursday, but before that, he went on Twitter and put one very famous college coach on blast: Read More »
Welcome to the third installment of Throwback Thursdays with the Coach. If you are a true historian of the game you will no doubt appreciate this week’s choice, and the uniform, of Wes Unseld. If you have never heard of this guy or never checked out who the great frontcourt players in the 1970s were besides Kareem and Walton, then please take the time to add to your knowledge. Read More »
It’s alright if you’re not familiar with Marquis Teague just yet. Unless you’re a diehard high school hoops fan, or from Indiana, chances are you’ve never even seen the kid play. But as the best point guard in the Class of 2011, and the younger brother of the Atlanta Hawks’ Jeff Teague, you should get to know him. Today, Teague has setup a 1:30 PM news conference to decide where he’s going to school in two years. And all signs point to it coming down to Kentucky and Louisville. Read More »
It’s safe to say that in one year, John Calipari has turned Kentucky into NBA U. With five players slated to go in the first 20 picks of this year’s NBA Draft, and commitments last week from top-five players in the Class of 2010 (Brandon Knight) and Class of 2011 (Michael Gilchrist) – not to mention All-American senior Doron Lamb – you’d think Coach Cal would take a day off. Think again. While there are still some outstanding players who might commit to the Wildcats for next year, Calipari is focusing his attention on the Class of 2012. Read More »