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  1. Dec. 20, 2029: Louisiana State Tigers (6-4) vs #11 ranked Boston College Eagles (8-2) at Silvio O. Conte Forum in Chestnut Hill, MA WEEI Radio Game Broadcast (excerpts) *After winning their first 8 games this season, the Eagles have looked terrible in the last 2 games. They’ve dropped from 6th to 11th in the polls. They need to rally their spirits and get back on track as conference play nears. *While it’s true that both losses were to very good ranked teams, a 21 point loss at home is cause for concern. *LSU’s losses have been to Louisville, #16 ranked Wisconsin, Saint Louis, and Georgetown. *Starting tonight for the hometown Boston College Eagles are: Bobby Grannum at PG, Corey Graham at SG, Darius Hein at SF, Danny Toliver at PF, and Courtland Reese at C. *Corey Graham drills a 3 to put the Eagles on top 18-11 with 12:40 remaining in the half. Graham has hit 4 of 5 shot and has 10 points. *Grannum whips the ball over to Minahan. Minaham passes across the lane to Glen Robinson. Robinson drives and pulls up to the left of the foul line. His 16 footer jumper drops through to make it 24-11 in favor of the Eagles. LSU calls a time out with 11:26 to go in the half. BC has now hit 11 of their 16 shots. *Bobby Grannum called for a reach in foul. That’s 2 on Grannum. That’ll bring in Rashon Thorn to replace Grannum. *The fouls are mounting up on BC. That’s 2 apiece on BC’s PG’s Grannum, Robinson, and Thorn. *Good pass by Moss into Tim Cotton. Cotton’s 14 footer on the right edge of the lane and Cottom puts up a contested shot that rolls around and falls through. Its good making it 43-28. *The half ends. Boston College in charge with a 48-30 lead. The Eagles knocked down 59% of their shots while holding the Tigers’ shooting to just 25%. BC’s offense was led by Corey Graham’s 12 points and C Courtland Reese who scored 10. *The Eagles inbound the ball to start the 2nd half. Grannum shoots the ball over to Graham who pops in another shot to give BC a 20 point lead. *BC’s reserves playing some solid defense. LSU is having a difficult time scoring. *Grannum drives then kicks the ball back to Gardner who’s free at the line…his shot settles cleanly through the hoop to make it 69-44 with 5 minutes left in the game. *That’s the end of the game. The final score is Boston College-81, LSU-59. The Eagles dominated all aspects of the game. *C Courtland Reese was high point man with 22 points. SG Corey Graham tossed in 14 points. C Tim Cotton dropped in 12 points.
  2. January Game Results: Western Illinois Leathernecks coached by Terry Morillo Central Arkansas-93, Western Illinois (7-5)-67 (Nate Roland-12 pts/7 reb/2 blk) Western Illinois (8-5, 1-0)-79, Maine-74 [OT] (Roy Hampton-28 pts/14 reb/2 ast/1 stl) Western Illinois (9-5, 2-0)-82, Binghamton-50 (Daniel Bair-17 pts/1 reb/5 ast/1 blk) Seattle-63, Western Illinois (9-6, 2-1)-54 (Roy Hampton-17 pts/5 reb/4 ast/1 stl) Western Illinois (10-6, 3-1)-74, Coppin St-69 (Gabriel Cabrera-17 pts/5 reb/2 blk) Western Illinois (11-6, 4-1)-69, MD-Eastern Shore-66 (Nate Roland-16 pts/3 reb/1 ast/2 blk) Western Illinois (12-6, 5-1)-81, NC Central-77 (Guillermo Cabrera-25 pts/6 reb/2 stl/1 blk) Western Illinois (13-6, 6-1)-69, UC-San Diego-57 (Nate Roland-16 pts/4 reb/1 ast/3 stl/1 blk) Comment: 6 wins in 7 last games including 4-game win streak. Tied for 1st place in Conference V. MD-Eastern Shore Hawks coached by Mike McMillan Lehigh-72, MD-Eastern Shore (4-7)-67 (Frank Davis-22 pts) MD-Eastern Shore (5-7, 1-0)-73, Coppin St.-61 (Omar Briggs-18 pts/5 reb/3 ast; Kent Evans-11 pts/12 reb) MD-Eastern Shore (6-7, 2-0)-83, UC-San Diego-71 (Darius Richart-19 pts/3 reb/2 ast/1 blk; Frank Davis-19 pts/2 reb/3 ast/1 stl) MD-Eastern Shore (7-7, 3-0)-101, NC Central-79 (Frank Davis-21 pts/3 reb/3 ast/1 stl) MD-Eastern Shore (8-7, 4-0)-80, Seattle-62 (Frank Davis-18 pts/2 reb/3 ast/1 stl) Western Illinois-69, MD-Eastern Shore (8-8, 4-1)-66 (Tony Rueter-19 pts/4 reb/1 stl/2 blk) MD-Eastern Shore (9-8, 5-1)-68, Binghamton-64 (Landon Newby-12 pts/1 reb/3 ast/3 stl/1 blk) MD-Eastern Shore (10-8, 6-1)-84, Maine-71 (Landon Newby-26 pts/1 reb/2 ast/1 stl/1 blk) Comments: The Hawks caught fire and now are tied for 1st place in Conference V. Alcorn State Braves coached by Ramon Montez Alcorn State (5-6)-85, Middle Tennessee-81 (Virgil Brown-19 pts/4 reb/5 ast/2 stl/1 blk) Alabama St-79, Alcorn State (5-7, 0-1)-69 (Will Friel-17 pts/3 reb) Alcorn State (6-7, 1-1)-72, North Alabama-58 (Gabriel Atwood-25 pts/8 reb/2 ast Alcorn State (7-7, 2-1)-69, SIU Edwardsville-60 (Will Friel-16 pts/9 reb/1 ast/1 blk) Alcorn State (8-7, 3-1)-86, North Dakota-59 (Jeff Samuel-17 pts/11 reb/2 ast/1 stl/4 blk; Virgil Brown-20 pts/4 reb) Longwood-63, Alcorn State (8-8, 3-2)-55 (Virgil Brown-17 pts/4 reb/2 ast/2 stl/3 blk) Arkansas-Pine Bluff-68, Alcorn State (8-9, 3-3)-56 (Virgil Brown-15 pts/3 reb/1 ast/1 blk) Florida A&M-85, Alcorn State (8-10, 3-4)-71 (Gabriel Atwood-19 pts/8 reb/2 ast/1 stl) Major INJURY: Alcorn State’s C Bernie Graham-broken hand. Comment: Beginning to appear to be just a middle of the pack team. Arkansas-Pine Bluff Golden Lions coached by Dontell Spencer Arkansas-Pine Bluff (8-3)-71, Portland State-62 (Imari McDonald-12 pts/5 reb/4 ast/1 blk) Arkansas-Pine Bluff (9-3, 1-0)-101, Longwood-84 (Imari McDonald-21 pts/5 reb/2 ast/2 stl) North Dakota-67, Arkansas-Pin-e Bluff (9-4, 1-1)-50 (Dwayne Robinson-10 pts/2 reb/2 ast/1 stl) Arkansas-Pine Bluff (10-4, 2-1)-88, Florida A&M-68 (Imari McDonald-19 pts/6 reb/1 ast/4 stl) Arkansas-Pine Bluff (11-4, 3-1)-80, SIU Edwardsville-75 (Imari McDonald-13 pts/5 reb/2 ast/1 stl/2 blk) Arkansas-Pine Bluff (12-4, 4-1)-74, Alabama St-69 (Milton Cox-16 pts/4 reb/8 ast/1 stl); Imari McDonald-13 pts/10 reb/1 stl/2 blk) Arkansas-Pine Bluff (13-4, 5-1)-68, Alcorn State-56 (Imari McDonald-13 pts/11 reb/1 ast/2 blk) Arkansas-Pine Bluff (14-4, 6-1)-83, North Alabama-62 (Marcus Huld-17 pts/12 reb/1 ast/1 stl) Comment: An 8-game win streak followed by the present 4-game win streak. Tied for 1st place in Conference V. UC-San Diego Tritons coached by Ken Yamoto Fairleigh Dickinson-81, UC-San Diego (4-7)-52 (Chris Ratliff-18 pts) UC-San Diego (5-7, 1-0)-97, NC Central-74 (Joe Houston-24 pts/5 reb/3 ast/1 stl/1 stl) MD-Eastern Shore-83, UC-San Diego-71 (5-8, 1-1) (Shannon Van Hook-10 pts/8 reb/4 ast/1 blk) Coppin St-92, UC-San Diego (5-9, 1-2) (Dave Rush-13 pts/6 reb/3 ast/3 stl/1 blk) Binghamton-96, UC-San Diego (5-10, 1-3)-92 (Donte Madison-18 pts/3 reb/3 ast/1 stl) Maine-87, UC-San Diego (5-11, 1-4)-60 (Chris Ratliff-11 pts/1 reb/3 ast/2 stl) Seattle-59, UC-San Diego (5-12, 1-5)-50 (Christ Ratliff-17 pts/1 reb/3 ast/5 stl) Western Illinois-69, UC-San Diego (5-13, 1-6)-57 (Joe Roland-16 pts/3 reb) Comment: Defense continues to be weak and when defense shows up, their offense doesn’t. Now in last place in Conference V. Need to start winning to avoid being relegated to the Independents. Coppin State is presently tied for last and that team got relegated from U to V last season.
  3. December Game Results: Western Illinois Leathernecks coached by Terry Morillo Colgate-89, Western Illinois (4-2)-71 (Guillermo Cabrera-23 pts) Western Illinois (5-2)-88, So. Carolina Upstate-77 (Roy Hampton-26 pts/8 reb/3 ast/4 stl; Guillermo Cabrera-18 pts/12 reb/3ast) Grand Canyon-78, Western Illinois (5-3)-64 (Roy Hampton-16 pts/7 reb/3 ast/1 stl) Vermont-78, Western Illinois (5-4)-53 (Guillermo Cabrera-16 pts/2 reb/3 ast) Western Illinois (6-4)-75, Drake-55 (Roy Hampton-22 pts/7 reb/2 ast/2 stl) Western Illinois (7-4)-84, Presbyterian-74 (Nate Roland-17 pts/6 reb/1 stl/2 blk) AWARDS: Roy Hampton-Conf V Player of the Week (12/10/2033) Comment: Offense sputtered at times. MD-Eastern Shore Hawks coached by Mike McMillan MD-Eastern Shore (2-4)-71, Robert Morris-68 (Frank Davis-16 pts/7 reb/4 ast/1 stl) MD-Eastern Shore (3-4)-65, Oral Roberts-56 (Frank Davis-12 pts/3 reb/2 ast/2 stl) Mississippi Valley-78, MD-Eastern Shore (3-5)-70 (Landon Newby-19 pts/3 ast) Furman-93, MD-Eastern Shore (3-6)-77 (Mike Rolle-25 pts/9 reb/1 ast/3 stl) MD-Eastern Shore (4-6)-75, Tartleton St.-58 (Darius Rychart-14 pts) Comment: They won when they got their defense together. Alcorn State Braves coached by Ramon Montez Alcorn State (2-4)-93, Brown-87 (Gabriel Atwood-21 pts/2 reb/2 ast/4 stl/1 blk) Coastal Carolina-72, Alcorn State (2-5)-61 (Gabriel Atwood-19 pts/7 reb) NC-Wilmington-61, Alcorn State (2-6)-47 (Mike Gallagher-12 pts) Alcorn State (3-6)-72, Columbia-68 (Virgil Brown-25 pts/1 reb/3 ast/4 stl/1 blk) Alcorn State (4-6)-93, NC-Asheville-75 (Virgil Brown-22 pts/5 reb/2 ast/4 stl) Comment: Atwood and Brown are becoming a dynamic duo. Arkansas-Pine Bluff Golden Lions coached by Dontell Spencer Arkansas-Pine Bluff (3-3)-105, Georgia St-99 [OT] (Dwayne Robinson-32 pts/8 reb) Arkansas-Pine Bluff (4-3)-93, Dartmouth-76 (Danny Logie-21 pts/4 reb) Arkansas-Pine Bluff (5-3)-73, San Francisco-59 (Danny Logie-21 pts/4 reb/2 stl/1 blk) Arkansas-Pine Bluff (6-3)-75, Cornell-69 (Milton Cox-14 pts/2 reb/3 ast/1 blk) Arkansas-Pine Bluff (7-3)-78, Florida Gulf Coast-72 (Milton Cox-18 pts/10 ast; Dwayne Robinson-22 pts) AWARDS: Dwayne Robinson, Conf V Player of the Week (12/3/2033) Comment: Now have a 6-game win streak. UC-San Diego Tritons coached by Ken Yamoto Richmond-83, UC-San Diego (3-3)-68 (Devon Jackson-20 pts) Idaho-92, UC-San Diego (3-4)-88 [OT] (Donte Madison-28 pts/6 reb/2 ast/2 stl/1 blk) Princeton-83, UC-San Diego (3-5)-76 (Chris Ratcllff-21 pts/4 ast/2 stl) Nicholls St.-78, UC-San Diego(3-6)-68 (Joe Houston-11 pts/10 reb/4 ast/1 stl/2 blk) UC-San Diego (4-6)-89, Lehigh-84 [OT] (Donte Madison-20 pts/4 ast) Comment: Defense fell apart.
  4. Ramond Keep In June a friend let me know that the Eagles had a vacant walk-on slot on their basketball team this season. I played high school and JC ball before coming to Boston College. I decided that I might as well try out for the spot. I knew it would only be for a year since I’m a senior. But hey, since the Eagles are now a good team, it would be a way for me to be part of March Madness and tell my kids and grandkids that I was in the NCAA Tournament. So Coach Fed and his staff selected me to be on the team and in October I began practicing with the team. I was a good high school and JC player and got right back into it. Not to pat myself on the back, but I can keep up with the other PG’s on this team. When the starting lineups were set, I wasn’t surprised that Bobby Grannum was the Guy. Hell, he came to BC with all kind of recruiting hoopla. So, OK, I wasn’t uptight about not being a starter. But I tell ya, I’m every bit the player Rashon Thorn is. Let’s just be honest about things, I’m better. So I figured I would be subbing in for Grannum. Well, I soon found out that wasn’t happening. Coach Fed kept throwing Rashon (and sometimes Glen Robinson or Corey Graham) in at the point when Grannum got fatigued or into foul trouble. What’s up with that? We’ve now played 10 games and I’ve played in just one blowout and for all of 2 freakin’ minutes! And in the past two games (which we lost badly), Grannum pretty much sucked. So after we got our butts kicked the second time, I have to admit, I lost it. I let it be known that I should have been out there on the court instead of Grannum and it was because Coach Fed didn’t like me that I wasn’t out there helping the team. Yeah, maybe I shouldn’t have been so vocal, but it’s the truth. Then some teammate or teammates let the coaching staff know about what I said. That earned me a trip into Coach Fed’s inner sanctum. He kicked my butt…and that just was totally unfair. I have a right to my own freakin’ opinions and that’s what I told him. Rather than hearing me out, he just took the easy route and laid a suspension on me. Let me tell ya, my opinion of him went way down. I mean having a suspension is really not even a penalty. Without the suspension all I’m doing is working my butt off every day at practice and then sitting on my butt for the entire 40 minutes of every freakin’ game and supposed to be a cheerleader from the bench. So now I can play video games during all that time this week. I guess Coach Fed figures a suspension will shut me up. Well I’m not wired that way…if I got something to say, I’ll damn well say it. And let me tell you, I’m not happy with the teammates who went tattling to the coaches after hearing me the other night. Don’t go crying to daddy for God’s sake. When I find out who it was, you better believe that I’ll be giving them an earful. Don’t go selling your teammates out, buddy-boys. And if they don’t like that, we can take it outside. I’ve never backed down from getting into scraps.
  5. November Game Results: Western Illinois Leathernecks coached by Terry Morillo Manhattan-74, Western Illinois (0-1)-60 (Earl Cue-16 pts/6 reb in 17 min) Western Illinois (1-1)-78, UC-Riverside-70 (Roy Hampton-20 pts/10 reb; Duany Vaughn-17 pts/10 ast) Western Illinois (2-1)-70, Rice-63 (Roy Hampton-20 pts/6 reb/2 ast/4 stl) Western Illinois (3-1)-70, Radford-69 (Roy Hampton-25 pts/4 reb/4 ast/1 stl) Western Illinois (4-1)-78, Indiana St.-76 (Roy Hampton-13 pts/10 reb/4 ast/1 stl) Major INJURY: Western Illinois’ SG Duany Vaughn tore his Achilles tendon and will be out the rest of his senior year. AWARDS: Roy Hampton-Conf V Player of the Week (11/26/2033) Comment: 4 game win streak, scoring either 70 or 78 points in each of those games. Hampton hot. Loss of Vaughn creates shallow bench for guards. MD-Eastern Shore Hawks coached by Mike McMillan Wright St. 66, MD-Eastern Shore (0-1)-47 (Kent Evans-9 pts/7 reb) James Madison-84, MD-Eastern Shore (0-2)-72 (Kent Evans-11 pts/6 reb) MD-Eastern Shore (1-2)-91, Campbell-69 (Junior Sarchet-18 pts) Incarnate Word-91, MD-Eastern Shore (1-3)-84 (Frank Davis-28 pts) McNeese St-73, MD-Eastern Shore (1-4)-46 (Frank Davis-15 pts) Comment: Ouch! Tough start to their season. Alcorn State Braves coached by Ramon Montez South Carolina Upstate-71, Alcorn State (0-1)-69 (Gabriel Atwood-22 pts/6 reb) Wagner-86, Alcorn State (0-2)-71 (Virgil Brown-16 pts) Alabama A&M-87, Alcorn State (0-3)-78 (Virgil Brown-14 pts/5 reb/2 ast/3 stl) New Orleans-78, Alcorn State (0-4)-67 (Gabriel Atwood-13 pts/4 reb) Alcorn St. (1-4)-71, Oregon St.-66 (Will Friel-18 pts/4 reb) Comment: Nice win over Oregon State. Arkansas-Pine Bluff Golden Lions coached by Dontell Spencer Arkansas-Pine Bluff (1-0)-86, Mississippi Valley-78 (Imari McDonald-18 pts/6 reb/6 ast/2 stl/3 blk) Sam Houston St-80, Arkansas-Pine Bluff (1-1)-59 (Marcus Huld-12 pts/4 reb) Chattanooga-86, Arkansas-Pine Bluff (1-2)-74 (Marcus Huld-16 pts/9 reb) Youngstown St.-79, Arkansas-Pine Bluff (1-3)-71 (Dwayne Robinson-23 pts/4 ast) Arkansas-Pine Bluff (2-3)-94, Fresno State-77 (Marcus Huld-17 pts/9 reb) Comment: Rough start for the Golden Lions. Weak defense thus far. UC-San Diego Tritons coached by Ken Yamoto Army-85, UC-San Diego-67 (0-1) (Dave Rush-14 pts) UC-San Diego (1-1)-72, American-49 (Shannon Van Hook-11 pts/13 reb) Loyola (MD)-80, UC-San Diego (1-2)-72 (Donte Madison-21 pts/6 reb/4 ast/1 stl) UC-San Diego (2-2)-86, Norfolk St-73 (Brian Thomas-14 pts/4 ast in 12 min of play) UC-San Diego (3-2)-73, Marist-69 (Dave Rush-21 pts/6 reb/3 Rast/3 stl/1 blk) Comment: Good start but not the toughest competition.
  6. Fred Aura After our loss to Providence, walk-on PG Ramond Keep was complaining to several teammates saying he should be playing rather than Bobby Grannum and that was because I disliked him. I called him into my office and told him his attitude was lousy and that he needed to shape up. He took that poorly and came back at me. That earned him a suspension. That upset him further with me…he seems to have quite a big chip on his shoulder. Ramond is a pretty good player for a walk-on, but there’s no way he’s going to get much playing time since I’m having a tough time splitting the playing time at PG up amongst Bobby Grannum, Rashon Thorn, and Glen Robinson. If Ramond’s poor attitude continues, I’ll just cut him. Tough enough putting up with attitude problems with a scholarship player, but absolutely no need to have to deal with it with a walk-on.
  7. Dipak Suresh The 2033-2034 season is about to begin. Here’s my notes based upon my review of the rosters of the 5 teams and my phone conversations with each coach about their team for this season: Alcorn State Braves, Conf V, Coach Ramon Montez Previous season records of the coach: 8-7 (Independent, 1st-tie); 14-14 (Conf V, 5th-tie); 14-16 (Conf V, 8th) My good friend and head coach Ramon Montez hopes to improve on his past two 14-win seasons. The Braves look pretty solid at the 3, 4 and 5 positions with talented players and great depth at those positions. But the team is weak at the guard positions, with the possible exception freshman Todd Young at PG. Ramon said he’s been pleasantly surprised by how Young has performed during the autumn practice period, particularly because he was only ranked #1735 as a recruit. Anticipated starters: PG Todd Young(6-0, Fr), SG Mike Gallagher(6-0, Sr), SF Virgil Brown(6-6, So), PF Will Friel (6-6, So), C Gabriel Wood (6-8, So) Western Illinois Leathernecks, Conf V, Coach Terry Morillo Previous season records of the coach: 4-11, Dixie St. (Independent, 4th); 7-8, Dixie St. (Independent, 2nd); 4-11, Dixie St. (Independent, 5th). Last Season Western Illinois had a 17-13 record and was tied for 4th in Conf V. Coach Morillo has said he’s extremely happy to have been hired as the new coach for the Leathernecks. His recruiting success this year is in stark contrast to the difficulties he encountered while coaching at Dixie State. SF Roy Hampton is expected to carry the team this season. But the Leathernecks have two good C’s as well. The other three positions appear to be rather average, although Morillo says he won’t be surprised if any of the three starters at those positions is surprisingly better than expected. Anticipated starters: PG Earl Cue (6-0, Sr), SG Duany Vaughn (6-2, Jr), SF Roy Hampton (6-3, Jr), PF Guillermo Cabrera (6-11, Jr), C Jamaal Adams (6-10, Jr) UC-San Diego Tritons, Conf V, Coach Ken Yamoto Previous season records of the coach: 3-12, Tarleton St. (Independent, 5th); 2-13, Tarleton St. (Independent, 5th); 6-9 Tarleton St. (Independent, 2nd-tie). Last Season UC-San Diego had a 14-14 record and was tied for 4th in Conf V. The Tritons have only one true PG on their roster and he’s not ready to be a starter. Brian Thomas came to the Tritons as a SF and subbed at the “3” last season, so there’s a lot of uncertainty as to how well he will handle the Point this season. Donte Madison needs to shoot better than he has the past 2 years…if not it may be wise for Coach Yamoto to try him at PG and move Thomas to SG. “I was really pleased to recruit Kevin White and look forward to his joining the team next season since I believe he will solve our PG deficiency,” said Yamoto. Although Shannon Van Hook was the team’s top scorer last year, Dave Rush wasn’t far behind him and is expected to be the go-to guy this season. Rebounding may well be a deficit that UC-San Diego has a tough time overcoming this year. Anticipated starters: PG Brian Thomas (6-6 So), SG Donte Madison (6-2 Jr), SF Dave Rush (6-3, Jr), PF Byron Kelley (6-7 Jr), C Shannon Van Hook (6-10 So). MD-Eastern Shore Hawks, Conf V, Coach Mike McMillan Previous season records of the coach: 8-7 (Independent, 1st-tie); 6-9 (Independent, 3rd); 12-17 (Conf V, 9th-tie) Only Junior Sarchet was a starter for the Hawks last season. But he scored well and Coach Mike McMillan is hoping JC transfer Kent Evans will dominate inside. Since both starting guards are very inexperienced, unless they step p and play well, it could be long season for McMilla’s troops. “We’re really short on bodies with 4 transfer players who are ineligible to play this season and you take away the 2 walk-ons, that just leaves us with 9 scholarship players who can play so depth is going to be a real problem for us,” said McMillan. This may just be a building year for the Hawks who look to be much strong next season. Anticipated starters: PG Omar Briggs (6-2, Sr); SG Tyron Adras (6-4, Sr); SF Junior Sarchet (6-8 So); PF Tony Rueter (6-6 Fr); C Kent Evans (6-9 Jr) Arkansas-Pine Bluff Golden Lions, Conf V, Coach Dontell Spencer Previous season records of the coach: 6-10 (Independent, 3rd); 9-7 (independent, 1st, NIT 1st Rnd); 11-8 (Independent, 1st, NIT Semifinals) All 5 starters are not only talented, but experienced. The Golden Lions look to be the cream of the crop when comparing these 5 teams. While the others will be trying to avoid being relegated, Arkansas-Pine Bluff has set their sites on being promoted at the end of this season for the 2nd straight year. “We have 4 transfers players who can’t play for us this season while sitting out their year of ineligibility. So we’ve got a short bench meaning I’ll rely heavily on my starters,” said Coach Spencer. If the Golden Lions can avoid serious injuries, it should be a good season for Arkansas-Pine Bluff and maybe even a better one next year when the transfer players are able to contribute and if the 5 recruits landed this year produce as freshmen. Anticipated starters: PG Milton Cox (6-0 Sr); SG Dwayne Robinson (6-0 So); SF Dexter Thorne (6-7 Sr); PF Marcus Huld (6-6 Sr); C Imari McDonald (6-10 Sr)
  8. Dec. 13, 2029: #10 ranked Providence Friars (6-0) vs #6 ranked Boston College Eagles (6-1) at Silvio O. Conte Forum in Chestnut Hill, MA 3rd Assistant Coach Jeremy Anderson (scouting) Another very tough opponent and again we’re the underdog. Hopefully our home court advantage will give us a chance against the Friars who are led by freshman phenom SG Zack Watkins who is averaging a formidable 35.3 ppg and 7.3 rpg. Another freshman, PG Moses Adams is averaging 21.7 ppg and 6.7 apg. Watkins was the #2 ranked recruit and Adams wasn’t far behind as the #9 ranked recruit last season. An amazing recruiting class. Providence is averaging 89.5 ppg (best in the country) and only giving up 61.7 ppg (30th best) while pulling down 36.3 rpg (12th best), dishing out 21.0 apg (7th best), and getting 6.7 bpg (6th best). Because Watkins and Adams are scoring so prolifically and combine to shoot 60% of the Friars FG’s, no one else on the team has a high scoring average, including Omari Aura, Coach Aura’s son. He’s started every game at SF but is averaging just 5.5 ppg. But…we’re a better team than the Friars have thus far faced this season. We can’t expect to stop Watkins and Adams, but hopefully can keep them from breaking out while avoiding our starting guards getting into deep foul trouble and focus on dominating inside. Glen Robinson is a top-flight defender. We typically have him subbing in at SF and SG. But against Providence we’re not going to play Glen at SF as we usually do, so that we can dedicate him to subbing at both SG and PG in relief of Corey Graham and Bobby Grannum to try to limit Watkins and Adams. We’ll also start the game playing man-to-man defense 100% of the time since playing zone might let Watkins and Adams get free too much. If we execute all that, I believe we’ll have a good chance of winning this tough non-conference rival game. Of course it would definitely help if we can get Watkins and Adams into foul trouble. Damn! Adams hits a jumper on Providence first possession and even while double-teamed, Watkins sinks a 3 on their next possession. The Friars hit just 5 of 15 FG’s, but 4 of those from beyond the arc while we made just 1 of 12 FG’s and we fall behind 16-4 after 8 minutes of play. Watkins picks up his 2nd foul with 11:20 to go so fortunately goes to the bench, but not before scoring 8 points. Hitting just 2 of 14 FG’s and 4 of 10 FT’s, we fall behind 26-9. Our offense finally comes out its slumber and led by SG Corey Graham and PF Danny Toliver we cut the Friars’ lead to 6 points before fading in the final few minutes of the half to trail 39-30 at the break. Adams and Watkins scored 26 of the Friars’ 39 points. We hit just 30% of our FG’s and 25% of our 3’s. Providence dominated the boards 23-15. We had no points in the paint, no 2nd chance points, and no fast break points. Coach Aura blisters the guys in the locker room. Midway through the 2nd half we’re still only hitting about 30% of our shots and we trail 61-43. Miss after miss and miss. Bad shooting is a disease infecting our entire team. We get trounced 76-55. We were outshot 43% to 32%, we hit just 13% of our 3’s, we were out-rebounded 39-31. We were called for 19 fouls while Providence was called for just 12. That resulted in the Friars going to the line 11 more times than us. We “held” Zack Watkins to 25 points and Moses Adams to 18 points. Out only player to score in double figures was SG Corey Graham and he had just 12 points and he hit just 3 of 10 FGA’s and missed all 5 of his 3PA’s. Providence now has won both games against us since they became our non-conference rival. Grumble, grumble, grumble.
  9. ACCSports.com The ACC dominance in basketball is again on display. The latest Media Poll has ACC teams in the 2nd (Duke), 3rd (Notre Dame), 4th (Florida State), 5th (Virginia), 6th (Boston College), and 9th (North Carolina) spots in the Top 25. Although the rankings vary slightly, all those teams are within the Top 10 in the Coaches Poll. Those six teams have a combined record of 54 wins and just 4 losses and four of the teams are in the Top 10 within the NET Rankings, an indication that their strength of schedules are robust. None of the other nine ACC teams have losing records. Those nine teams have won 50 games and lost 23. Boston College is the #1 team in the NET Rankings listing. Coach Fred Aura said, “We definitely want a tough pre-conference record. That’s because we know that the ACC schedule will not just be demanding, but tortuous. Any ACC team can beat any other one on a given night. So preparing for the ACC grind by playing strong teams helps challenge our players and ensure that they won’t be surprised when they go up against the many great ACC teams. So we don’t schedule weak competition for pre-conference play. Oregon proved that against us in our last game and Providence will be just as tough in our next game this week. Our guys realize they need to be up for each and every opponent. We take pride in that we’ve been up at the top or very near the top of the NET Rankings the past three seasons. To be honest I’m more focused on the NET Rankings than the Polls.”
  10. Dipak Suresh (part 3 of 3) October 16th: Each of the five coaches have filled all their scholarships and have completed recruiting unless any of the recruits have SAT scores that do not meet their school’s minimum. They all seem to be relative satisfied with the recruits who have committed and feel that these recruits will fill upcoming needs for their teams. Alcorn State: All 4 scholarships filled. *SG Craig Brown, JC Soph from Pensacola, FL. Rated #873. Strengths: Outside shooting, Passing, Ball handling. *SF Harold Hein, HS Sr from Collinsville, MS. Rated #371. Strengths: Inside shooting, Stealing, Passing, Athleticism. Top 25 at Memphis Hoops Summit. *SF David Pryce, HS Sr from Shannon, MS. Rated #471. Strengths: Defense, Scoring, Outside and Inside Shooting, Athleticism. *SF Darrick Grace, HS Sr from Bruce, MS. Rated #1338. Strengths: Outside and inside shooting, Ball handling, Hard worker. Western Illinois: All 3 available scholarships filled. *C Craig Grant, HS Sr from Concord, IL. Rated #695. Strengths: Inside shooting, Defense, Scoring. *SG Mike Noyola, HS Sr from Glen Ellyn, IL. Rated #562. Strengths: Outside shooting, Scoring, Defense. *C William Byams, HS Sr from Chicago, IL. Rated #387. Strengths: Inside shooting, Rebounding, Passing, Scoring. UC-San Diego: Filled the single available scholarship. *PG Kevin White, HS Sr from Scottsdale, AZ. Rated #446. Strengths: Outside shooting, Passing, Defense, Ball handling. MD-Eastern Shore: Filled all 2 scholarships *SF Jair Jupiter, HS Sr from Washington, MD. Rated # 470. Strengths: Outside Shooting, Passing, Rebounding, Stealing. Tremendous work ethic. *SF Frank Reed, JC Soph from Naples, ME. Rated #611. Strengths: Outside shooting, Passing, Rebounding. Arkansas-Pine Bluff: All 5 scholarships filled. *PG Darrin Randolph, JC Soph from Lake Village, AR. Rated #1482. Strengths: Athleticism, Outside shooting, Passing, Ball Handing. Tremendous work ethic. *SF Dan Jefferson, HS Sr from Mansfield, AR. Rated #370. Strengths: Outside and inside shooting, Scoring, Defense, Athleticism. Great leader. *C Travis Vines, HS Sr from Greenbrier, AR. Rated #1752. Strengths: Inside and outside shooting, Defense, Scoring. *C Chris Betts, HS Sr from Mountain Pine, AR. Rated #945. Strengths: Inside and outside shooting, Scoring, Defense. *SF Jamar Brown, JC Soph from West Palm Beach, FL. Rated #632. Strengths: Outside shooting, Passing, Rebounding, Athleticism. PointGuard NOTE: Hah! No extra walk-ons for the 5 coaches this time! All scholarships have been filled. But now the association has been returned to the AI to sim for remainder of this association and the future.
  11. Dipak Suresh (part 2 of 3) 2nd Week: Alcorn State: Got verbal from 6’8” SF Garrick Grace and has another SF who seems close. Returning to visit one of the SF and the SG plus visiting two different SF’s. Western Illinois: Got verbal from 6’8” C Craig Grant and returning to the other 2 C’s previously visited. Also visiting another SG and PG. UC-San Diego: Decided to drop the SG who was visited the first week due to concerns about his grades and potential for meeting the school’s high SAT standards. Revisting a PG plus visiting 3 different PG’s. MD-Eastern Shore: Revisited the same four recruits. Arkansas-Pine Bluff: Got verbals from 6’4” SF Dan Jefferson and 6’1” JC PG Darrin Randolph. Revisiting a C visited last week plus a new SF, C, and PF. 3rd Week: Alcorn State: Got verbals from 6’2” SG Craig Brown and 6’8” SF Harold Hein. Revisited a SF and visited 2 new SF’s and a SG. Western Illinois: Revisted PG and SG plus a new PF and C. UC-San Diego: Received Verbal from 6’5” PG Kevin White. No other scholarships to offer. MD-Eastern Shore: Revisited PF and C plus new PF and SF. Arkansas-Pine Bluff: Revisited 2 C’s and a new SF. 4th Week: Alcorn State: Revisited 2 SF’s and SG plus a new C. Western Illinois: Revisited the same 4. UC-San Diego: No more scholarships to offer. MD-Eastern Shore: Revisted 2 SF’s and C plus a new SF. Arkansas-Pine Bluff: Got verbals from 6’7” C Travis Vines and 6’9” C Chris Betts. Revisited SF.]
  12. December 11, 2029: #15 ranked Oregon Ducks (7-2) vs #6 ranked Boston College Eagles (8-0) in Championship Game of the Emerald Coast Classic at Niceville, FL Coach Fred Aura After two straight hair breadth wins, I’m hoping our team can get a big lead and hold it. I’m not sure I can withstand another exceptionally close game. While we haven’t played particularly well in either of or games in this tournament, I’ve liked how our guys got tough when it was needed. Oregon has scored as well as we have this season, but has held opponents to just 62 ppg. Four of their starters are averaging in double figures. The Ducks roster is loaded with talent. Just before this tournament they had a big win over Texas which was ranked 6th in the polls at that point. Oregon is a 7-1/2 point favorite to beat us. We need to play solid defense and to stay out of foul trouble. Our guys seemed pretty tight during the pre-game warm up. But then in our huddle just before the game started, Adrian Moss did a humorous rapping psych-up routine with rags about each of us coaches that loosened up the entire team. Adrian’s a good guy with a great personality. He wants starter minutes, though. So while he has a lot of potential, he’s still developing the skills to be consistently productive. With Corey Graham and Glen Robinson playing well, I’m having a tough time giving him much playing time which I know is frustrating him. Well, here we go. I’m on the refs early as they rack up fouls on our guys. SG Corey Graham is charged with 2 quick fouls so is riding the bench. Oregon is sinking free throws but we’re hitting FG’s to keep up with the Ducks. In the first 7 minutes the refs have called 3 fouls on us on Oregon’s 3-point attempts and Oregon converts 8 of those 9 shots. Calling the game so close is making a mockery of the championship game. Late in the half, I decide to try to force the Ducks’ big men to get into foul trouble and instruct my guys to continually work the ball inside to see if we either score in the paint or they foul us. It works as their starting center is called for his 3rd foul with 3:15 to go in the half. But we still trail 34-31 when the half ends even though we held Oregon’s shooting to just 31%. But they hit 15 of 17 free throws. In the locker room I tell my guys even though the refs are whistle happy to continue to play up tight on Oregon’s players. The refs just seem to look at Corey Graham and call fouls on him. I get a technical early in the 2nd half meaning I have to be careful not to get another T and get banished from the game. Our guys are doing the best they can, but Oregon’s shooting improves in the 2nd half and they have great quickness that results in some fast break scores on our turnovers. The Ducks’ lead grows to 61-45 with 11 minutes to go. We fight hard to narrow the gap, but then our shooting goes ice cold and we end up getting thumped by a final score of 77-58. Oregon’s defense and quickness were just too much for us, showing we have a lot of work to do before conference play begins. SG/SF Glen Robinson tops our scoring with 16 points and also hauls down 8 boards. SF Darius Hein has another strong game, hitting for 14 points and PF Danny Toliver adds 10 points. SG Corey Graham has the worst game of his collegiate career, nearly fouling out which limits him to just 16 minutes of play during which he is held scoreless. Oregon’s SG Ashante Harmon hits 9 of 13 FG’s, 4 of 8 three-pointers, and 4 for 4 at the foul like to drop 26 points on us.
  13. Dipak Suresh (part 1 of 3) I'm kind of a basketball junkie. I played high school basketball...well I played, but not exactly played well. I was on the Freshman team, then the JV team and finally made the varsity team as a bench warmer mostly. But my love for the game remains. I went to graduate school with Ramon Montez and Mike McMillan and the three of us were (and still are) very good friends. Lots of good times together. When the two of them became head coaches of Division I teams I was ecstatic. I later learned that they forged a little “new coaches club” together with Ken Yamoto, Dontell Spencer and Terry Morillo. The more I found out about that from Ramon and Mike, the more interested I became in keeping track of the five with the aim of eventually writing a best-selling book that will chronicle their development and coaching careers. I finally was able to contact all five to let them know what I wanted to do. It took a while to gain all their trust, but now I’m able to talk with each of them and they’ve been very open with what they’re doing and experiencing. This past summer I’ve touched base with each of the five coaches to find out about their recruiting efforts. A common concern of all of them at one point or another was that even though some recruits were showing initial interest, they were having an extremely tough time building the level of interest to the point where the coaches thought they had a chance to get any of the recruits they were pursuing to commit to their schools. It’s now early September. The “contact” period of recruiting is just around the corner…four weeks when the coaches can do home visits to recruits. This is the time when the coaches can talk face-to-face with key recruits and their parents with the goal of “making the sale” on themselves, their basketball programs, and their universities. The coaches can they extend scholarship offers to those recruits they want and feel they have a chance of getting verbal commitments from. Here’s the “inside info” that I’ve gathered from the coaches on the types of recruits they are zeroing in on…they wouldn’t divulge names of the recruits, just some generalities on who they will be visiting the first week: Coach Ramon Montez, Alcorn State: With 4 scholarships to offer, his primary focus is upon SF’s and SG’s. The first week he’s visiting 4 recruits, the first 3 are from MS and the 4th is from FL…the first is a SF who was in the top 25 at the Memphis Hoop Summit but whose work ethic is a little suspect; the second is a SF who is not highly rated but is a hard worker and really likes Alcorn St.; the third is another SF who is a good shooter and passer but whose interest level in Alcorn St. hasn’t been particularly strong since he wasn’t impressed with the school’s facilities, so he’s a long-shot; the fourth is a SG who also is probably a long-shot but is a great outside shooter and very good passer and ball handler. Coach Terry Morillo, Western Illinois: Has 3 scholarships and would like to fill them with a PG, SG and a big man. The four he’s visiting are: a C from Illinois who is great defensively and a good inside scorer but wants good facilities which Western Illinois doesn’t have; a SG from Illinois who’s a great outside shooter and a pretty good defender but who wants good facilities and discipline which aren’t strengths for Terry but he’ll focus on location; an athletic PG from Indiana who is a strong passer and ball handler with a good outside shot; a C from Illinois who is a good defender and scorer. Coach Ken Yamoto, UC-San Diego: Has just one scholarship to offer and wants a PG. He’s visiting: a SG from Alaska with good passing and ball handling skills who’s scores well from outside and is a strong rebounder; a PG from CA who’s a good scorer, defender, and rebounder and is a hard worker; another PG from CA who is an exceptionally hard worker with a nice outside shot and good passing and ball handling skills; a PG from AZ who is an excellent passer, good ball handler, very good defender, and is a good scorer from outside. Coach Mike McMillan, MD-Eastern Shore: 2 scholarships and prefers to get a SF and a big man. He will be visiting: a C from Maryland who is a good rebounder and shot blocker with good inside shooting skills; a SF from Maryland who shoots well from outside and is a good rebounder and passer with a great work ethic; a JC C from Virginia who’s a hard worker and good scorer from inside and strong defensively; a JC C from Pennsylvania with good shooting skills from both inside and outside who is a strong rebounder and shot blocker. Coach Dontell Spencer, Arkansas-Pine Bluff: Has 5 scholarships to fill and wants 3 big men, a SF and a PG. He’s visiting 4 recruits from Arkansas: an athletic PG with good passing and ball handling skills who is also a good outside scorer; a SF who is a great leader and is a good scorer with an outstanding outside shot and has strong defensive skills; a C who’s a very good inside scorer but also can hit from outside; a C with excellent defensive skills and strong inside scoring abilities.
  14. PointGuard NOTE: OK, I burned the way, way, way-past-midnight oil to get beyond my self-created SNAFU and completed the summer/autumn recruiting. I’m going to break up the results into 3 separate posts, one post would just be too long and more than anyone really wants to go through. Warning on the side of the DDSCB2021 Box: Doing the recruiting on your own for a whole bunch of teams in a Universe Mode association is NOT for the faint of heart. If you have a family and/or a job and/or a life, it’s ill-advised.
  15. Dec. 10, 2029: #12 ranked Boston College Eagles (7-0) vs Michigan Wolverines (5-1) in 2nd Round of the Emerald Coast Classic at Niceville, FL 2nd Assistant Coach Chris Evans Michigan beat Tulane 92-72 in their opening game of this tournament. The Wolverines are a good scoring team that shoots a little better than us, but we are the better rebounding team and our defense has been stronger thus far this season. We need to bounce back from the low-energy play of our last game. Even though we were hitting a high percentage of our shots, the Wolverines simply destroyed our defense, hitting nearly all their shots. We slipped behind gradually. With 12 minutes to go in the first half, we trailed 24-16. Some sloppy play resulting in a series of turnovers definitely was adding to our woes. Michigan sliced thought both our m-2-m or 2-3 zone like a warm knife through butter…either scoring or getting fouled on every possession. We fell behind by as much as 17 points and trailed at the end of the half by a score of 49-36. Michigan hit 67% of their FG’s. Five of our players has 2 or more fouls. SG Corey Graham pumped in 16 points, but he couldn’t solely carry the team. Somehow we needed to clamp down defensively on the Wolverines in the 2nd half. Coach Aura made some adjustments to our defensive schemes that stymied Michigan when the 2nd half began. And we hit shots that cut their lead to 52-47 just 4 minutes into the half. Even though the Wolverines began hitting some shots, 3 minutes later we’d crept to within 1 point at 59-58. Then with 12:26 on the clock, Corey Graham drilled in a 16 footer that put us ahead by a point. Courtland Reese picked up his 4th foul on Michigan’s next possession. With 10 minutes left we led 66-63. A 4th foul was called on PG Bobby Grannum with 8-1/2 minutes remaining. Coach Aura was called for a technical foul. A combination of free throws and 3’s put Michigan on top 77-68. We fought back to narrow the gap to 81-79 with 3:37 to go. Then Courtland Reese cut into the lane and hit a turn-around 10 footer that tied the game. Corey Graham was fouled and hit both free throws to put us ahead 83-81 with 2:43 left. Corey Graham then got called for his 4th foul, but Michigan failed to connect on the first of a 1-and-1. We were up by 2 and Michigan fouled…Graham knocked down both shots to make the score 87-83 with a minute to play. The Wolverines forced up a shot that was off the rim…we rebounded and were fouled. Bobby Grannum sunk both free throws. The Wolverines scored and fouled. 2 more points for Grannum. Graham fouled out. Michigan hit both foul shots and immediately fouled. Grannum hit one of two free throws putting the game out of reach. Our second half effort yielded a come-from-behind 92-87 victory sending us the championship game. We hit 60% of our shots in the 2nd half and held the Wolverines shooting to just above 40% in the final half. SG Corey Graham poured in 27 points plus had 2 steals and 4 blocks, PG Bobby Grannum scored 21 points, and C Courtland Reese added 10. Our wins shot us up to #6 in the Media Poll and #7 in the Coaches Poll.