Thursday, October 31, 2013

A foul is a foul is a foul...

Kirk Wessler offers wise words on the new emphasis on calling fouls fouls in college this season. A snippet:
But so much of that skill disappears on college courts, wrapped up in defenses that clutch and grab, push and chuck. On-ball defenders might as well saddle up the dribblers and squeal “Yee-haw!”

A dose of reality in positioning

Adam Finkelstein/New England Recruiting Report writes about positioning players -- how a two wants to play the one, how a four wants to be a three...

Circumstance can certainly play a role

In his Sports Illustrated article "History, Not Hagiography," Joe Sheehan salutes the achievements of baseball great Derek Jeter who will likely retire. Sheehan concludes with a tremendous point:
...If this is the end for Jeter, celebrate him without reserve. He's one of the greatest players in history, the anchor of a dynasty, an essential part of the game's story. Remember, though, that what separates the immortals from the perennial All-Stars isn't necessarily character or desire or any of the ineffable qualities we rush to grant successful athletes. Sometimes it's about who drafted you, when you came up, who didn't trade you and whether you worked for people who put you in position to succeed. Derek Jeter was great, and Derek Jeter was lucky. Acknowledging both doesn't diminish him one bit.
This is something we far too often fail to consider.

The late Wilt Chamberlain and Bill Russell are obviously deserving NBA Hall of Fame residents, literally and figuratively giants of the game. But would the Celtics have won less, the same or more championships had Chamberlain been in the middle for them? How about the 76ers and Lakers with Russell at center? Or the St. Louis Hawks for that matter?

The 2013-14 Monterey Peninsula College Lobos

Coach Blake Spiering has released his 2013-14 Monterey Peninsula College Lobo roster:

* Brandon Hanson, G 6-0 175 sophomore Monterey HS/Seaside

* Devin Koeplin, G 5-8 155 freshman Dublin HS/Dublin
* Hayden Mislavsky, G 6-1 180 sophomore Atascadero HS/Atascadero
* Ivor Basor, F 6-9 230 sophomore Watsonville HS/Watsonville
* Caleb Wood, G 6-2 170 freshman Galena HS/Reno NV

* Mark Florie, G, 5-10 180 freshman Chocktaw HS, Chocktaw, OK 

* Will Burkett, G 6-6 170 freshman St. Francis HS/Watsonville
* Joseph Lampkin, G 5-10 165 sophomore Valley Christian HS/Gilroy

* Thor Anderson, G 5-10 160 sophomore Marina HS/Marina   

* Jai Bransford, G 6-1 190 sophomore Overland HS/Aurora, CO

* Mitch Wood, G 6-8 180 freshman Everett Alvarez HS/Salinas
* Josef Delk, G 6-4 180 freshman  Salinas HS/Salinas

* Richard Meek, F 6-5 205 sophomore Andrew Hill HS/San Jose

* Shaun Hall, F 6-6 250 Monterey HS/Monterey  

* Donovan Salvant, G 6-3 185 sophomore Seaside HS/Seaside 

The 2013-14 Modesto Junior College Pirates

Coach Paul Brogan has a lengthy roster plus a quintet of redshirts on his 2013-14 Modesto Junior College squad:

* Eric Melgar, G, 5-7 160 freshman Sierra/Manteca

* Edwin Castellanos, G 5-9 150 freshman Davis/Modesto

* Julius Dixon, G, 6-0 160 freshman Davis/Modesto

* Joel Ruble, G 6-0 170 freshman Clovis West/Clovis

* Keegan Sanchez, G 6-0 175 freshman Paterson/Paterson

* Zach Gonzales, G 6-2 180 freshman Riverbank/Riverbank

* Kaden Johnson, G 6-3 170 sophomore Enochs/Modesto

* Blake Terry, G 6-2 175, freshman Waterford/Waterford

* Blake Houser, G 6-3 185 freshman Downey/Modesto

* Josh Allen, F 6-7 190 freshman Downey/Modesto

* Anthony Hubbard
, G 6-3 200 sophomore Turlock/Turlock

* Evan Grimes, G 6-2 195 sophomore Antioch/Antioch

* Joe Crank, F 6-5 205 freshman Smithville/Smithville TX


* Sayveon Tyson, 6-0 165 freshman Downey/Modesto

* Jordan Wyrick, 6-0 180 freshman Davis/Modesto

* Joel Marshall, 6-2 175 freshman Lso Banos/Los Banos

* Justin Lassiter, 6-2 195 freshman Weston Ranch/Stockton

* Michael Johnston, 6-4 195 freshman Ripon/Ripon

The 2013-14 West Valley College Vikings

West Valley College Coach Scott Eitelgeorge, coming off a 19-11, 9-3 season, is back with this season's Viking roster:

* Erick Kidd - G FR 5-9 150 Eden Prairie, MN

*Jordan Nordlum - G SO 6-1 175 Oregon City, OR

* Carl Smith - G FR 6-0 170 Merced, CA

* Momir Gataric - G/F 6-6 205 Sunnyvale, CA (Homestead High)

* Bill Gray - G FR 5-10 160 Menlo Park, CA (Palo Alto High)

* Enyinnaya Okwara - F FR 6-4 195 Santa Clara, CA (Santa Clara High)

* Malek Kanaan - G SO 6-0 180 Amman, Jordan

* Khalil Johnson - G FR 6-0 175 Palo Alto, CA (St. Francis High)

* Lorenzo Graham - G/F FR 6-1 195 Fairbanks, AL

* Oliver Duran - G FR 5-8 165 Salt Lake City, UT

* Matt Stauber - G FR 5-11 175 San Jose, CA (St. Francis High)

* Rodwell Ong - G FR 5-8 165 San Jose, CA (Oak Grove High)

* Tucker Gootee - F FR 6-4 215 San Jose, CA (Leland High)

* Lucas Schoonmaker - F FR 6-5 205 San Jose, CA (Branham High)

* Stephen Butelo - G FR 5-11 170 Sunnyvale, CA (King's Academy)

* Nate Rohrer - F FR 6-7 200 San Jose, CA (Leland High)

The 2013-14 College of the Redwoods Corsairs

College of the Redwoods Coach Justin Mora has settled on his 2014-15 Corsair roster:

* ROMEO STEELE, Guard FR 6-0 190 Del Norte HS/Crescent City

* BRYCE SULLIVAN, Guard SO 6-1 170 West Campus HS/San Francisco

* MITCHELL HASH, Guard SO 6-5 200 Eureka HS/Eureka

* BRANDON ROGERS, Guard SO 6-1 160 Eastlake HS/San Diego

* NICK McCALL, Guard FR 6-0 175 Green Valley HS/Las Vegas

* JOHNNY SHELTON, Guard FR 6-0 165 Rodriguez HS/Fairfield

* AARON CLOUD, Guard FR 5-6 185 Hoopa HS/Hoopa

* JAMES SLADE, Guard SO 6-3 200 Ferndale HS/Scotia

* JUSTIN HEIDRICK, Guard SO 6-3 185 Arcata Sh/Arcata

* CHRISTIAN ENOS, Forward SO 6-4 185 McKinleyville HS/McKinleyville

* JAMAR SMITH, Forward FR 6-4 205 Sheldon HS/Sacramento

* JON LOSA, Forward SO 6-7 210 Ferndale HS/Ferndale

* BRYCE ROSE, Forward FR 6-6 200 Eureka HS/Eureka

* Mike Malkowski, Forward FR 6-3 200 MIddletown, CT


RS Charlie Moon, Guard, FR 6-0 160 Hoopa High

RS Curtis Flood

The 2013-14 City College of San Francisco Rams

City College of San Francisco Coach Justin Labagh has his 2013-14 roster out:

* Dulani Robinson 5-foot-9 SO guard McClymonds High
* Chuks Iroegbu 6-foot-3 SO guard Franklin High

* Kori Babineaux 6-foot-5 SO guard Folsom HS

* Gemeny Givens 6-foot-0 FR guard St. Joseph Notre Dame High

* Vincent Golson 5-foot-7 FR guard Skyline High

* Josh Fox 6-foot-6 SO forward Sacred Heart Cathedral Prep
* Travante Williams 6-foot-3 SO guard Save High School (Alaska)

* Donny Wilder 6-foot-7 FR forward Castlemont High

* Gabe Bealer 6-foot-6 FR forward Antelope High

* Jamil Brown 6-foot-7 FR forward Oakland High

* Maxime Bindiz  6-foot FR guard France
* Kanu Aja 6-foot-9 SO Center Cardinal Gibbons High (Maryland)
* Danny Orengo 6-foot FR guard Riordan High

* Sami Eleraky 7-foot-0 Redshirt FR center (Denmark)

* Patrick Cooks 6-foot-2 sophomore guard Pierce JC/Curtis High (Tacoma) 

Lutes checking out Colorado Springs

6-foot-7 2014-er Lake Lutes, out of Jesuit High, is tripping to a Mountain West Conference school: "Excited for my official to Air Force tomorrow!"

Edmonds a hot commodity

Derrick Jones tweeted: "Cal Poly SLO was at DVC practice today to see frosh G Jermaine Edmonds Jr"

Mix in Nevada, Pacific as well as others. That's the Big West Conference, the Mountain West Conference and the West Coast Conference -- quite impressive. 

Lumpkins faring quite well

Former American University and Serra High frontcourter Stephen Lumpkins is definitely making noise in the Dutch Basketball League:
Stephen Lumpkins (203-PF-90, agency: Pro Partner Sports Management) had a great game in the last round for Leeuwarden and that's him to receive a Player of the Week award for round 4.

The 23-year old power forward had a double-double of 20 points and thirteen rebounds, while his team crushed Den Helder (#5, 2-2) with 17-point margin 94-77. Leeuwarden is placed at 3rd position in Dutch Eredivisie. They would have been even better if they hadn't lost that single game earlier this season. Leeuwarden will need more victories to improve their 3-1 record. Lumpkins turned to be Leeuwarden's top player in his first season with the team. The American University graduate has very impressive stats this year. Lumpkins is league's best scorer averaging so far 20.3ppg and leads league in rebounds with 9.8rpg. Lumpkins is in league's top in and averages solid 1.8bpg and 66.0% FGP.

Pacific over Stanislaus

It was Pacific over Cal State Stanislaus by 10 -- 80-70 -- last night. Backcourter Sama (Santa Rosa JC) Taku went for 25 points on 10-15 shooting while center Tony (Cosumnes River College) finished with nine in 14 minutes of action.

Not Nor Cal related but...

From Dave Rogahn: "JCBB Breaking News - unconfirmed report that longtime Glendale coach Brian Beauchemin is among the 2014 CCCAA Hall of Fame class. Congrats!"

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

A feature on Kobe

I have no idea how to quantify this (if it is quantifiable and not just jibberish) but my sense is that Kobe Bryant, as tremendous as he is, doesn't make his teammates more effective. Yes, the can score and certainly get his own shot plus he has been a marvelous defender but does his play generate greater opportunities for his other four players wearing the same uniform?

LeBron James has pushed himself into a level where it appears he does enhance the value of his fellow quartet. He draws multi-player defensive attention and still scores plus he also gets the ball to teammates open as a result of his dribble-drives and shooting prowess.

I also don't see this from Kevin Durant, at least not yet, but he has plenty of time to make it happen.

The geneisis of these thoughts: Sports Illustrated's Lee Jenkins serves up a recent Bryant profile.

Perception and reality

Coach Bob Walsh writes about perception in basketball decision-making.

How to match up with any team

HoopsThink's James Kerti talks with Grantland's Brett Koremenos about how teams can put a system in place that allows them to plug in undervalued players so that they can play with any team:

The pre-season JC rankings

Mel Grussing has posted the Massey JUCO team rankings and of the northern California team contingent, CCSF is rank #1, Santa Rosa JC #5, Fresno CC #7, Yuba College #9 and Ohlone College #12.

For the full list, head here.

Book gifts

With the holidays coming -- meaning gifts, gifts, gifts -- here are some basketball book options as recommended by Michael Rogner.

Also, don't forget George Dohrmann's extraordinary book "Play Their Hearts Out." It was published in 2010 and is an insightful look at one club team basketball organization.

This is not on the horizon, it's happening now

Irish startup seek to revolutionize the sports world with genetic profiling

Jeremy Russotti's new blog

Jeremy Russotti has started up a new blog, in addition to his many other activities.

Check it out.

His blog.

Plus, here's his Twitter account.

Aronis produces

New Mexico State had no trouble -- 97-68 -- versus Western New Mexico last night as former San Rosa JC backcourter Kevin Aronis totaled 15 points (4-8 from long distance). The senior also passed for three assists in a starting role.

Pacific ready to go

Jagdip Dhillon writes about Pacific's newcomers as the Tigers prepare to face Cal State Stanislaus.

Floreal says whose your Daddy?

Former Palo Alto uber athlete E.J. Floreal left an impression on the heralded Julius Randle during a recent Kentucky scrimmage:

Will Maupin on the WCC

Will Maupin goes in-depth with his West Coast Conference preview -- USF #3, the Gaels #4. SC #6 and Pacific #7.

Titus on AG

Former Ohio State walk-on Mark Titus has a certain style of presenting words and here a prime example as he composes about Aaron Gordon:
Again, I know that he did all of that against high school kids who are probably doing keg stands and majoring in "wasting my parents' money" right now, but the people who dismiss highlight mixtapes are just as bad as those who think every high school phenom is the next Jordan. I get it: "Anyone can look great against Avon High School, but can they do it against Duke in the Final Four?!" But who in their right mind would think that Gordon will bring the ball up against Duke in the Final Four, cross over Jabari Parker, spin off of Rodney Hood, and dunk so hard on Rasheed Sulaimon that Sulaimon gets a concussion? (Arizona fans just scanned the room for something to put on their laps to hide their collective erection.) That's not the point. The point is that in watching Gordon's mixtape you can see how much potential he possesses. If he can be even 75 percent as good as he's expected to be, Arizona fans are about to witness Derrick Williams on steroids.

Edmonds garnering attention

Via Derrick Jones: "Nevada head coach David Carter was at DVC practice today to see frosh G Jermaine Edmonds Jr."

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

The 2013-14 Yuba College 49ers

Yuba College Coach Doug Cornelius has unveiled his 2013-14 Miners. The team doesn't appear all that big but definitely is athletic:

* Barry Ogalue Wing 6' 5" 185 Freshman

* Chris Smith Wing 6' 4" 200 Sophomore

* Cristian Salhani Post 6' 8" 221 Freshman

* Darrell Polee Jr Combo Guard 6' 1" 175 Sophomore

* Desmond Butler Combo Guard 6' 1" 186 Freshman

* Devon Hawkins Combo Guard 6' 3" 209 Freshman

* Floyd Wormley Forward 6' 7" 200 Sophomore

* Gary Melvin Forward 6' 4" 185 Sophomore

* Jaysen Williams Forward 6' 6" 215 Sophomore

* Jeremy Bubier Forward 6' 7" 210 Sophomore

* KJ Logue Forward 6' 5" 197 Sophomore

* Sebastian Eliasen Forward 6' 5" 209 Freshman

The 2013-14 Merritt College Thunderbirds

Merritt College Coach Keenan McMiller has a mix of old and new with his group of 2013-14 Thunderbirds:

* David Andoh, 6-foot-7, SO, St. Mary's High Montreal, Canada 

* Sammy Allen, 6-foot-2, SO, Alameda High Alameda, CA

* Keith Higgins, 5-foot-7, FR, San Leandro High San Leandro, CA

* Hershel Brown, 5-foot-9, FR, JFK High Sacramento, CA

* Jalil Eppinger, 6-foot-3, SO, Berkeley High Berkeley, CA

* Denzel Bellot, 6-foot-2, FR, McClymonds High, Oakland, CA

* Trent Archer, 6-foot-7, SO, Las Lomas High Walnut Creek, CA

* Maceo Bell, 6-foot-5, FR, Skyline High Oakland, CA

* Anthony Knight, 6-foot-2, SO, El Camino High San Francisco, CA

* Corey Spears, 5-foot-9, FR, Richmond High Richmond, CA

* Marcus Green, 6-foot-2, SO, Bishop O'Dowd High Oakland, CA

* Greg Calvin, 6-foot-4, FR, Deer Valley High Antioch, CA

* Dalvin Guy, 6-foot-6, FR, McClymonds High Oakland, CA

* Keiland Callum, 6-foot-5, FR, Encinal High Richmond, CA

* Esmir Ahmethoic, 6-foot-6, FR, Encinal High Alameda, CA

A Lakeshow program update

From Lakeshow coach and founder Joe Fuca:

Hi everyone, I wanted to send out the latest and greatest list to help you track our Lakeshow players out there this fall and winter. As you can see from the list, we have lots of players (50) that are active in the upcoming college basketball season this year.

2013 Class

* Dante Robinson - Salesian High - Holy Names
* Liam Hunt - Drake High school - Hope University
* Dylan Alexander - Westin Ranch - San Jose State University
* Patrick Conroy - Marin Catholic - Nevada University
* Ej Floreal - Palo Alto High - Kentucky
* Mikey Eggleton - College Park - Menlo College
* Joe Campagno - Redwood high - Occidental College
* James O'Neal - Freedom High - Fresno City College
* Ali Faruqbey - San Lorenzo High - Arizona Western
* Aaron Cameron - Sac High - Cal State East Bay
* Raymond Bowles - Modesto Christian High - University of Pacific
* Nick Calcaterra - Marin Catholic - San Francisco State
* Parker Farris - McKinnyville High - Humboldt State
* AJ Newell - College Park - Contra Costa College
* Noah Everly - San Marin - William Jessup University
* Henry Caruso - Serra High School - Princeton University
* Peyton Prudhomme - Westwind Prep -

2012 Class

* David Ahern – Marin Catholic – Portland University – freshman year – transferred to Sonoma State
* Matt Mareno – Redwood High School – Cushing Academy – Assumption College - DII powerhouse
* Kendall Jackson – Bishop Odowd – Suffield Academy – Columbia University
* Drew Dickey – St Francis – UC Santa Barbera – sophomore year
* Cole McConnell – Sacred Heart – New Hampton Prep – Michigan University - freshman year
* JJ Crum – Bishop Odowd – Holy Names – sophomore year - starting point guard
* Alex Fertig – Buchanan High – Cal State Monterey Bay – sophomore year – leading scorer on the team
* Jeffrey Parker – Salesian High School – Western  Washington – redshirt freshman year 
* Connor Jean – Northgate High – Diablo Valley College – sophomore year - point guard
* Ryan Swain – Buchanan High – Fresno City College – redshirt freshman year
* Casey Norris – Newark Memorial – Ohlone JC – sophomore
* Abu Trotter – St Francis – De Anza College –  Philippines
* Tom Witzel – Arcata High – Humboldt State – transferred to Diablo Valley College for sophomore year
* Tyler Fidelbus - Las Lomas - Chapman College

2011 Class

* Mike Harris – Monte Vista High School - Cal Lutheran – transferred to Diablo Valley College – transferred to Sonoma State as junior
* Kevin Stafford – Las Lomas – Azusa Pacific
* Mike Best – Terra Linda - UC Irvine  - redshirt sophomore
* Jordan Guisti – San Ramon Valley – St. Marys College – started in NCAA game
* Mark Tollefsen – San Ramon Valley – USF – picked as a WCC player to watch
* Jacari Whitfield – St Joes-Notre Dame – Cal State East Bay 
* James Davis – Arroyo High – Northern Colorado University – transferred to Sonoma State as a redshirt sophomore
* Chris Read – Castro Valley – Ohlone College – Cal State Stanislaus
* Tre Demps - Northwestern University - Concord High and then Grant High in San Antonio 
* Michael Crawley - Antioch High School - Fresno City College 
* Ben Freeland - Suffield Academy – Lafeyette College
* Treaven Duffy - Cushing Academy – St. Mary's College
* Gary Williams  - Westwind Prep school – Indian Hills Junior College - offers from Arizona State

2009- 2010

* Ronnie Baker – Rodriguez high – DVC - Alaska Fairbanks – senior year – Scoring 10 points per game
* Chris McNealy – San Ramon Valley – UC Irvine – senior year – strong year averaged 12 ppg
* Jordan Barton – Bishop O'Dowd – Chico State – junior year – Strong rebounder – coming off bench
* Nate Appel – De La Salle – Chico State – junior Year – coming off the bench – provides 5 ppg
* Jackson Carbajal – Buchanan High – Sacramento State – transferred to Fresno Pacific
* Mikhael McKinney – Washington High – Sacramento State – senior year starts at point guard – All Conference selection
* Rashad Parker – Castro Valley – Chico State – senior year - All Conference selection

Alumni Playing Prodessionally

* Joey Fuca – San Ramon High - Masters College - Germany – Baskets of Vilsbiburg – Liche in Frankfurt - Pro B
* Brandon Adams – San Ramon High - DVC - University of Hawaii - Australia –
* Jordan Demuynick – Castro Valley – Praire View A&M – Europe
* Eddie Miller - Antioch - UC Davis - Brazil 
* Brian Barbour – Monte Vista – Columbia – Pro team in the UK
* Justin Brue – Bishop Odowd – UCSD 
* Scott Clark - Foothill High - Ohlone JC - Humbodt State - BK Miners in Iceland
* Patrick Scott – Bear Valley – Sonoma State 
* Brian Stafford - Las Lomas - Denver University - Europe

Prep coaches to be recognized

Joe Davidson lauds seven Sacramento area high school coaches who will be honored at the [Sacramento] Hornets' 2013 Basketball Coaches' Circle Induction and Tip-Off Dinner

Read more here:

Arizona romps

Arizona took down Augustana 84-52 last night in an exhibition game. Aaron Gordon was limited with a groin strain and finished with seven points plus five boards in 22 minutes. Fellow frosh Elliott Pitts played 12 minutes.

A redshirt season for Pitts has yet to be determined:
This time, it’s Pitts who appears to be sitting on the outside of the rotation so far, but Miller said it’s still too early to say if Pitts will redshirt.

Pitts was 1 for 4 for three points, with five rebounds and a steal on Monday. He can’t play in a regular-season game if he is redshirted, though freshmen can play in exhibition games and still do so.
Here's an item on Brandon Ashley, who started the game and contributed eight points and five rebounds:
More like Brandon Smashley

Arizona sophomore power forward Brandon Ashley had three blocks on Monday, a positive improvement on the defensive end after not making much of an impact in the category last season. As a freshman, Ashley had just 18 blocks in 35 games, including only three in 18 Pac-12 games.

John makes his announcement

AJ John has announced that he is heading to Wave Land post high school: "Just gave my verbal commitment to Pepperdine"

He stands 6-foot-7 and attends Maria Carrillo High.

The Nor Cal standouts in the West Coast Super Showcase

Ronnie Flores offers the rankings of the northern California prospects who participated in the West Coast Super Showcase recently held in Clovis:
* 3 Jordan Roberson 2015 6-4 SG Cordova Rancho Cordova

* 6 Phillip Fayne 2015 6-7 PF Franklin Elk Grove

* 8 Colin Russell 2015 6-8 PF Folsom HS

* 13 Everton Maxwell 2015 6-7 CF Laguna Creek Elk Grove

* 14 Jeremy Eves 2015 6-9 C Foothill Elk Grove

* 15 Chris Munoz 2014 6-6 SF Cordova Rancho Cordova

* 16 Chance Ortega 2015 6-5 SF Analy Sebastopol

Flores exploring the Wildcats

Via Doug Benton: "Bishop O'Dowd/Lakeshow G Sebastian Flores is visiting Chico State today. Played at College Park HS last year"

Payne joins Whitworth coaching staff

After two years on the court at Whitworth College in Washington, Zach Payne (formerly of Diablo Valley College and De La Salle High) is now a member of the Pirate coaching staff this season.

Monday, October 28, 2013

The 2013-14 William Jessup Warriors

Coach Lance Van Vogt has finalized his 2013-14 William Jessup University roster and it contains a large number of northern California talents:

* Julius Smith - SR G 5-9 Fresno, CA (Barstow College)

* Caleb Richey - FR  G  5-8 Santa Barbara, CA (Bishop Diego High School)

* Trevor Mabalon - SO G 5-7 Stockton, CA (Tokay High School)

* Justin Downer - JR G 6-0 North Bend, WA (Skagit Valley CC)

* Sterling Shells - SR G 6-1 Galt, CA (Galt High School)

* Guillermo Nunez - FR G 6-1 Manteca, CA (Sierra High Schoo)l

* Kelton Newman - SO  G 6-3 Elk Grove, CA (Franklin High School)

* Skyler Sexton - SO G 6-2 Turlock, CA (Pitman High School)

* Anthony Edwards - FR F 6-5 New Albany, IN (New Albany High School)

* Corey Clement - JR F 6-5 Henderson, NV (Peninsula College)

*  Rob Frank - JR  F  6-6 Sacramento, CA (Simpson University)

* Alston Friday - JR  F  6-6 Brooklyn, NY (Columbia College)

* Tim Oswald - SR G 6-2 Mariposa, CA (Santa Rosa CC)

* Dustin Koons - SO F 6-6 Sacramento, CA (Capital Christian High School)

* Matt Thompson - JR G 6-0 San Jose, CA (Lincoln High)

* Kirill Sergeyev - JR C  6-7 Irvine, CA (Irvine Valley CC)

* Sean Fenner - JR F 6-5 Stockton, CA (San Joaquin Delta College)


There are four redshirts:

* RS Noah Everly FR G 6-3 Novato, CA (San Marin High School)

* RS Mike Meserole FR G 6-0 Galt, CA (Liberty Ranch High School)

* RS Brenton Muldrow SO G 5-10 Riverside, CA (Martin Luther King High School)

* RS Saajid Polite SR G 6-3 Sacramento, CA (University of Sioux Falls)

The 2013-14 Dominican University Penguins

Dominican University Coach Booker Harris has posted his 2013-14 Penguin roster and six northern California-connected players dot the group:

* Russell Davis - Fr. 6-2 180 G Oakland, CA Bishop O'Dowd HS Biological Sciences

* Dominique Taplin - Jr. 6-0 175 G Alameda, CA Oakland HS Political Science

* Matt Hayes - So. 6-2 200 G Yuba City, CA Yuba City HS Biological Sciences

* Christopher Schwartz-Edmisten - So. 6-3 190 G Sacramento, CA Sacramento Waldorf  Undeclared

* Daniel Vann-Victorino - Fr. 6-7 200 F Salinas, CA North Salinas HS Health Science

* Connor Haysbert - Sr. 6-8 230 C Sacramento, CA Center HS Biological Sciences

The 2013 Academy of Art Urban Knights

The following are the northern California-connected players on Coach Julius Barnes' Academy of Art Urban Knights 2013-14 roster:

* Niles Smith - 6-foot-7, 225, sophomore forward (South San Francisco High)

* Herman Pratt IV - 5-foot-11, 178, freshman guard/forward (Sacred Heart Cathedral Prep)

* Akil Johnson - 6-foot-6, 235, sophomore, forward (Berkeley High)

* Matt Cesca - 6-foot-6, 200, junior, forward (Capuchino High)

* Aaron Anderson - 6-foot-0, 180, junior, guard (Archbishop Riordan High)

Supporting the Old School coach

Parent Jennifer Wilson delves into the subject of coaches-yelling-at-players and backs what she labels "the Old School coach." Do take a look.

Interesting look at the landing of Zylan Cheatham

Mark Ziegler digs deeper into San Diego State's Zylan Cheatham recruitment. Some snippets:
...Then [Malik] Pope became the highest-rated prep commitment in SDSU history, and opposing coaches began telling Cheatham that the Aztecs were so loaded he might never see the floor.

“When (Pope) committed, it did raise some red flags at first,” said Cheatham, who prefers to play on the wing with the ball in his hands. “I was thinking, ‘They’ve got a lot of guards.” I felt like there weren't a lot of ball-handling minutes left...”
...What might have swung things back in the Aztecs’ favor: A trip to Phoenix after practice last Tuesday by Coach Steve Fisher and the entire Aztecs coaching staff.

“They explained everything,” Cheatham said. “They showed me film of how they use their players, how they get them the ball. Coach (Justin) Hutson made a really good point: ‘Why are we recruiting you so hard, why would Coach Fisher be leaving practice, if we didn't think you fit in with us?’

“And then Coach Fisher said something. He said: “When you close your eyes and dream at night, where do you see yourself?’ That overwhelmed me. That basically took over the process for me ... When I was there on my visit, I never forgot that feeling I had. It felt like home. I just knew it was the right place for me..."

"Learning How To Lose"

Coach Bib Walsh has a new post up -- "Learning How To Lose" -- which doesn't include a silly parental charge of bullying when an opponent gives you a whomping.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Galloway commits

Jonathan Galloway announced via Twitter: "Made my decision and I will be a part of UC Irvine basketball"

The Salesian High and Norcal Wildcats big had plenty of options but went with the 6-foot-7 coach who has turned around the Anteater program.

FYI: Tajai Johnson up in the Northwest

Former Vallejo High backcourter Tajai Johnson, who left UC Riverside after last season, in playing up north at Clark College (Vancouver, WA) in 2013-14.

A Buzz Williams video interview

He's one of those intriguing personalities in the coaching ranks -- meet Marquette Coach Buzz Williams. His teams are never the most talented but his guys plays harder than anyone else. Williams' entry into the coaching ranks is really interesting:

For those wanting to enter the coaching field

Mike Brown got his 'coaching' start thanks to Bernie Bickerstaff and they've been tight ever since. Very few guys come out of college and land in the NBA so Brown has a unique story as Mary Schmidt Boyer writes.

Becoming a good shooter

Jarell Flora certainly isn't a household name but high schoolers and even some college guys should memorize his advice for becoming a good shooter.

A coaching story

Pete Thamel profiles Dave Clawson, his football coaching career and the adaptations he made in order to become and then remain successful.

News on Collin Chiverton

A tweet from Mario Gomez - CCSF Basketball: "Congrats to Collin Chiverton @CChiv24 on signing a pro contact with Al Maseerah Basketball Club in Saudi Arabia"

The former Archbishop Mitty, CCSF and Eastern Washington talent is pictured in his Ram uniform here.

Pressley and Harris shine

Portland downed Concordia-Irvine 92-77 last night with sophomore Bryce (Jesuit High) Pressley posting a 13 point/10 rebound double-double in 26 minutes. Bobby Sharp, out of Santa Rosa Junior College, scored six points on a pair of treys for the Pilots.

Tim (Valley Christian High) Harris paced the visitors with 23 points in 31 minutes of play. Serra High and Foothill College transfer Stephen Grosey totaled five points and an equal number of rebounds in 23 minutes, also as a starter.

Avenant in his senior season

Chris Avenant headed across the country to Northeastern in 2009-2100 (he's a redshirt senior) and now he's appearing on the team promo material --  hit the link provided courtesy of Earl Allen Jr.

Clayton likes the bluegrass

Per the Oakland Rebels: "Oakland Rebels/Elev8 Sports (FL) 6'5 wing Derrick Clayton has committed to WKU#Hilltoppers"

He was formerly at Castro Valley High.

USF, SJSU, UC Davis and Utah State are listed on Rivals as offering at some point but it's impossible to know if thosewere current.

The Hilltoppers are in the Sunbelt Conference and finished 20-16, 10-10 last season. They lost 64-57 to Kansas in the Big Dance.

Hunt to redshirt

It looks like former Drake High frontcourter Liam Hunt will be redshirting this season as he is one of six Hope International University talents designated as such on the Royals roster:
RS Liam Hunt* FR F/C 6-7 225 San Anselmo, CA Sir Francis Drake HS

CSUMB gives San Diego a game

Cal State Monterey Bay fell 90-81 to host San Diego of the West Coast Conference last night.

For the Otters, junior guard Devin (Woodcreek High/Sierra College) Murphy finished with 11 points in 24 minutes off the bench, backcourter Brandon (Vallejo High/Napa Valley College) Cole totaled 11 points in 19 minutes and 6-foot-9  Kris (Antioch High/Los Medanos College) Gallop ended up with six points in 22 minutes of action.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Meet Alex Pribble

Catch the television news most any night and if it bleeds, it leads. The same with newspapers and media web sites. A strict diet of such would render most with the sense that this world is overrun with horror and that fear is the most common human denominator.

Yes, **it does happen. There's no soft-pedaling or denying it.

But so does good and the vast majority of earth's population are focused keeping this element foremost.

Count Bay Area native and current Eastern Washington University (EWU) Assistant Coach Alex Pribble among the latter practitioners.

You're probably wondering by now what do the variances in the human condition and behavior have to do with basketball?

Well, some join the coaching ranks with the foremost wish of becoming the next mega-dollar coach, with DickieV shouting out hosannas of admiration and there's nothing wrong with that. But how many of those positions exist?

Others treasure the relationship of a bound-together-like-family roster, being in a position to both display and instill certain values, enjoying having an less-talented five-as-one performing better than five stars working as individuals, and with synchronicity abetting the team.

While the Marin County born and bred Pribble certainly would enjoy a weighty wallet and national recognition, it's the so-called intangibles of basketball that resonate strongest with him.

Let's detail his playing and coaching hoops biography.

Pribble lauds Doug Donellan, the longtime Drake High coach, as his first mentor.

"I've had a passion for basketball for as long as I can remember," he explained. "But it was an honor to play for Coach Donnellan, and to become part of a program which has a great tradition. I cherished my role and took it very seriously."

"I was a late bloomer. I had a growth spurt between my sophomore and junior years and also between my junior and senior years." He finished at Drake standing 6-foot-4 and with Marin County Athletic League most valuable player honors in his final go-around.

Pribble then was accepted into the University of California and made Coach Ben Braun's basketball squad as a recruited walk-on. This was a dream come true for him as "I grew up watching Cal." He also recalls seeing Bear guard Shantay Legans play and, in one of those quirky coincidences, Legans is a fellow assistant at Eastern Washington.

"It was a fantastic experience. I was by no means the most athletic or the most talented" but by his junior year, Pribble earned a scholarship and started nine games for the Bears as a senior as well as being named a captain. He was twice named to the Pac-10 All-Academic Team as well as earning the Cal Hustle Award two times.

Intent on earning a master's degree, Pribble stayed on in Berkeley and also worked as a graduate assistant under Braun, assisting with individual workouts, scouting and compliance. "I am so grateful for the opportunity. It allowed me to get a feel for the coaching profession."

After college, he began his ascent into formal mentoring. Pribble started teaching and coaching boys basketball at Tamalpais High from 2008 to 2011. What is he especially proud of during that tenure? "It was all about building a program. My first year, 10 players showed up to the freshman tryouts. My last year, 60 players showed up." The program also enjoyed much more success on the court than in previous years.

Then Pribble went to work with a longtime friend.

"My first college coaching job was with Paul Trevor at San Francisco State."

The connection?

"We attended the same high school and the same summer basketball camp. In fact, he was my camp coach when he was in high school and I was in the third grade."

The Gators finished 9-19 in Pribble's first year, then 16-12 last season, including a sparkling 10-2 record at home.

Not long ago while scouting talent at a tournament held at City College of San Francisco, Pribble met EWU Head Coach Jim Hayford, who had an opening to fill on his Big Sky Conference staff. "He's a high character coach who had nine all-academic players on his team last year. I was drawn to that."

Hayford was impressed, as was Pribble, and an offer produced an acceptance. It was off to Cheney, Washington.

Now Pribble is part and parcel of a mini-United Nations.

"Among our players, we have three Australians, two Germans and a Serbian on the team. All our guys love each other, they're tight and hang out together," Pribble said. "It's a matter of being different in ways but being part of a whole."

With a philosophy Pribble credits to Paul Trevor, "what's foremost important is that our players, regardless of actions, never question whether we love them and care about them as a person. It's very clear our person-to-person relationship is never in jeopardy. The foundation of any program is the players. The key is getting high character and highly competitive ones."

It's a 'family' of the highest order up in Cheney. Relationships rule, guided by mutual respect and honor. Eastern Washington doesn't land blue-chippers unless the measurement tool is the tightness of the bond to one another.

Who wouldn't like being part of that?

May Alex Pribble have a long career influencing young men. He is doing it for all the right reasons.

Sac State hoops getting a new facility

Although a direct kink to an actual announcement is absent, Kadeezy at the UC Davis basketball MB posted that a new 6,000 seat arena is coming to the campus of Sacramento State. He does post to a link quoting the Hornet president but that lacks actual specifics.

Brad Stevens' move to the NBA

Zak Keefer digs deep and goes long in supplying seemingly everything you might want to know about Brad Stevens' move from Butler to the Boston Celtics. This is impressive journalism.

A contact list is crucial

Ryan Restivo covers Pat Duquette's journey to becoming a DI head coach.

You gotta defend

Gabe York was a big time high school scoring guard out of southern California who chose to head to Arizona. He has an interesting quote in a recent Bruce Pascoe-written article:
T.J. McConnell defended a lot of talented perimeter players in practice while redshirting last season and one thing about Gabe York stood out.

“I couldn’t give him any room,” McConnell said, “because if he got open for a shot it’s going in.”

Still, York played in only 15 of 35 games because, he said, something else was lacking.

“I didn’t play defense in high school,” York said today, when he and McConnell were made available to media at McKale Center. “It was hard to translate from going from a high school where I had to score the ball, and I had to stay on the court mainly for offense, to come in here where people were just as good as I was and having to play defense. So I think definitely this year it clicked in my mind that offense is always going to be there. I’ve got play defense to get on the court...”
Come college ball, if you don't stop someone then you watch a lot more than you want to.

Stationing AG

In his "Five Key Questions on the Wildcats" post, Seth Davis writes:
Where will [Aaron] Gordon play?

While it would be silly to pigeonhole Gordon with a single position, at some point Miller is going to have to make some decisions as to how best to deploy his child prodigy. The answer will mostly depend on what kind of defensive strategy Miller wants to use. If he wants to go big, he can play Gordon on the wing. If he wants to go small, he can move Gordon to the post. The key will be to make sure Gordon can use all of his skills without gumming up the works. This may be a happy problem, but it is a problem. We know the Wildcats are going to be good. Gordon gives them their best chance to be great.

Dellavedova is an NBA-er

Matthew Dellavedova is an official member of the 2013-14 Cleveland Cavaliers.

A College Hoops Journal tweet: "He is incredible. I’ve never seen anyone like him. You know Tom Brady? He’s that level of a leader. And he’s only 22." ~ Rick Croy on Delly"

Butterfield on target

Utah State topped Central Methodist 108-88 last night at home with former Del Oro High and Yuba College talent Spencer Butterfield posting 20 points on 7-9 shooting plus four assists.

Freshman JoJo (Dublin High) McGlaston totaled seven points in 16 minutes and senior Sean (Yuba College) Harris contributed four points and three boards in seven minutes:

Brown leads Mizzou

Jabari Brown goes for 15 points and five assists in Missouri's opener.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Meet Nate Stephens

By choice, Nate Stephens immersed himself in basketball and the roundball game, especially so in the Sacramento and Yuba areas, is better off because of his involvement.

Currently an assistant coach at Yuba College as well as the coach of the top Youth Basketball Academy (YBA) varsity team and a skills trainer with I'm Possible training, the Sacramento native's engagement began with his playing hoops at Rocklin High. In fact, he was a member of the very first Thunder class.

After a successful run in the business world, life itself soon became a bucket list of sorts.

First, a friend who was the athletic director at Global Youth Charter High had an opening for the boys basketball head coach. Stephens accepted that challenge.

The result?

A two-year tenure in which the Bulldogs won 22 games and took the league title in 2008, with Stephens being named Coach of the Year. While with Global Youth Charter, he also began coaching in the YBA Dawgs organization, which he has done so now for five years.

Unfortunately, he was diagnosed with cancer in 2009.

Stephens jumped further into the hoops world and his time with Yuba College Coach Doug Cornelius now clocks in at three years and running. The 49ers are Bay Valley Conference champions seven years and running.

This spring and summer, Stephens' Dawgs squad took down the Oakland Soldiers and Play Hard Play Smart among others as well as taking the West Coast Swing tournament title.

Notice the trend here?

For the obvious impaired, it's Stephens and success.

But he would be the first to express modesty both about his record and because he has learned so much from others in the basketball world.

To dive into hoops was a no-brainer of sorts. "I decided it was time to get healthy, to get better, to enjoy life." Basketball provided that fulfillment, specifically working with players who want to learn and get better and coaches willing to share their knowledge.

Thus the coaching field became his focus.

"Basketball has been a catalyst to help me," he explained. "It has given me so many important relationships in my life." One person Stephens cherishes in particular is Ken Griffin, a fellow Yuba assistant and the winningest coach in Marysville High basketball with 429 victories. "I have learned so much about life, basketball, competing and how to treat people from him."

Stephens added, "Coaching also allowed me to make an impact through basketball but not necessarily about basketball."

More importantly, he is ecstatic to say that "this year my cancer was declared in remission."

So what does the future hold for Stephens?

He certainly wouldn't mind moving up in the coaching ranks. "You have to be willing to move around and I am," he said.

Calling him a win magnet would be a trendy quip but such simply doesn't do justice to Stephens as coach and person -- it's much too narrow a focus. The success is fine but it comes as a result of the relationships he has with fellow coaches and his players, and Stephens wouldn't have it any other way.

Gunn and Karczewski commit

Out of San Ramon Valley High and Lakeshow Pump N Run, both 6-foot-8 frontcourter David Gunn (#40 above) and 5-foot-9 guard Jerry Karczewski (#5 below) have given a verbal to Westmont College in Santa Barbara.

A Glenn Baral update

Here's freshman Glenn Baral's bio at the Stetson University men's basketball site:
High School
Played first three seasons at St. Mary’s College High School in Berkeley, Calif. Led the Panthers to three Northern California Division IV State Finals appearances, including a championship in 2010. Earned NorCal Preps All Division IV honors, and was ranked 11th in Northern California while averaging 18 points per game in 2011. Played senior season at Salisbury School in Connecticut, leading the Crimson Knights to a New England Prep Class A Championship in 2012. Went on to play a prep year at Westwin Prep Academy in Phoenix, Ariz. Helped lead the Wildcats’ National Team to a Southwest Prep Championship in 2013. Led Westwind, which regularly sends nearly all of its players on to play college basketball, with a 65.0 field goal percentage. Also played baseball and was a member of the track and field team at St. Mary’s. Earned the IHoops Scholastic Achievement Award.

It's going to be Will Davis' year

After a UC Irvine intra-squad scrimmage, GNA27 offers some major love to Will Davis:
...Not surprisingly, Will Davis continues to be a dominant player. He is hands-down the best player on the team, and he could have a monster season. A lot will depend on the supporting cast around him and how well a couple of the younger players can contribute. I'd expect him to take another step forward now that he and Alex Young will be the focal points of the squad, but opponents will gear their defense toward stopping those two. So that's when the rest of the team has to get it done. With guys like Chris McNealy, Travis Souza, and Luke Nelson, there should be some decent offensive threats to complement Davis and Young. When you add Aaron Wright, Jaron Martin, and Reed McConnell, there seems to be an abundance of depth and potential at the guard spots. So I'm now seeing why this team has been predicted to win the conference by so many publications...

Kudos to Da'Ron Sims

Da'Ron Sims gets a shout-out at the CCSF Twiiter site. Do check it out.,

Looking more at Randy Bennettville

Jeff Eisenberg look at the post-Dellavedova St. Mary's Gaels.

Do notice that two former walk-ons are mentioned: Jordan Giusti and Beau Levesque as part of the rotation of contributors. The rise and staying power of St. Mary's basketball deserves a book length treatise.

McGlaston to be on the court

Via Kyle Goon after a press conference by Utah State Coach Stew Morrill:
...Looking like one redshirt this year. Morrill said he expects not a lot of redshirts this year, save one. That should be center Carson Shanks, as assistant Chris Jones said last night on the radio with KVNU. The coaching staff looks for him to develop some strength and athleticism over the next year, having some time to adapt to the college game. The 7-footer has nice touch but is probably not physically ready to compete in the Mountain West. As for Viko Noma'aea and Jojo McGlaston, they'll have chances to play this year. Outside chance of two redshirts, Morrill said, but for now just the one...

Cameron Oliver interviewed

YAF has a video interview up on Grant High's Cameron Oliver.

Irvine and Davis flying high

The respective media covering the Big West Conference are predicting UC Irvine to win the title this season with Anteater Will (Sacramento High) Davis II as an all-league selection.

The WCC coaches make their picks

The West Coach Conference poll of coaches has St. Mary's third, USF fourth, Pacific seventh and Santa Clara eighth.

The sole player out of northern California on the All-WCC pre-season squad is Gael Brad Waldow.

Thanks goes out to Will Maupin for posting the coverage.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

An Amadi Udenyi update

Josh Horton looks at former De La Salle backcourter Amadi Udenyi who is a member of the 2013-14 Pepperdine Wave squad.

Ali & AVC

Mel Grussing presents the only northern California member of the 2013-14 Antelope Valley College basketball team.

Being one's best

Yes, we can do everything within our power but our best effort, alongside the utilization of trainers, legal supplements, weightlifting and whatever else, will get us to, at most, our best. And to borrow from Jerry Seinfeld, there's nothing wrong with that as working to reach our zenith has no down side.

But it remains important to understand that attempting to be our best holds no promises of say a roster spot on the Duke basketball team materializing.

That's because it's realizing potential in the context of each individual's ceiling.

It's just a simple fact that we all have limits. Genetics and a multitude of other factors place a finite degree of progress on us all, whether we are talking LeBron James or Muggsy Bogues.

Plus, shooting for out-of-reach heights as the end goal serves no purpose unless participation in pity parties and going Mike Tyson on oneself is Valhalla for you 

Still, maximizing each and every day via what we do is the ultimate. Getting as close as possible to such fulfillment is still quite the achievement and a height missed by so many others.

But if you have your choice -- and you do -- why not attempt to be your best?

"Big Smooth" in Stockton

Jagdip Dhillon writes about the front line at Pacific, including former Cosumnes River College big Tony Gill who has acquired quite the nickname: "...6-8 Gill "Big Smooth," in reference to his offensive repertoire, which includes solid post moves, a reliable mid-range jumper and 44 percent shooting from 3-point range. Gill scored 46 points in three Big West Conference Tournament wins that earned Pacific a spot in the "Big Dance" after he averaged 7.2 points and 3.3 rebounds per game during the regular season..."

Gill was honored as the Big West Conference Tournament Most Valuable Player last season.

Conroy at Nevada

Former Marin Catholic High backcourter Patrick Conroy is a walk-on with the Nevada Wolf Pack.

Here's a July post on his commitment to Coach David Carter.

Wright impressive in the Beehive State

Lya Wodraska and Tony Jones wrote this about former CCSF star Delon Wright after a Utah intra-squad scrimmage:
Delon Wright had the best all-around performance of the night. The junior guard scored 11 points, grabbed nine rebounds, handed out six assists, stole the ball twice and blocked a shot. He's easily Utah's best perimeter player and a guy who creates offense for himself and others. On the downside, Wright picked up five personal fouls, many of the cheap variety on the perimeter.

"He's that kind of guy who can just fill the stat sheet," Krystkowiak said. "But he's got to play without fouling, or he won't be able to play."

Wright is the younger brother of Portland Trailblazer forward Dorell Wright. He's been around the game his entire life, and it shows in his maturity on the court.

DAllen with a national mention

In writing about under-the-radar college frosh, Jon Rothstein includes:
Dakarai Allen, G/F, San Diego State: Long and athletic, the 6-5 Allen will give Steve Fisher another athlete that can guard multiple positions defensively. A terrific finisher in the open court, Allen will be lethal in transition and on the break.

Rules for assistant coaches to live by

Kevin Sutton provides "10 Things An Assistant Coach Can Do To Help Their Head Coach Be Successful."

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Jordan Lewis playing in Israel

Per Owen Main, former Terra Linda High and Cal Poly player Jordan Lewis is now playing professionally in Israel.

Here's another article primarily on how Lewis helped out the Mustang basketball team as an assistant of sorts.

Smith making an impression

Brian McInnis wrote about Hawaii's intra-squad scrimmage and a former CCSF talent was crowned the best of the night:
Quincy Smith, SO PG. 1st half: 3-3 FG, 1-1 3pt, 2-2 FT, 9 pts, 2 reb, 3 ast, 2 TO, 1 stl, 18 min. 2nd half: 0-1 FG, 0-0 3pt, 6-8 FT, 6 pts, 2 reb, 0 ast, 0 TO, 1 stl, 11 min. Analysis: The best-performing guard of the night. Showed off his athleticism and generally made good decisions, and even hit a 3, something of a bonus to his game. He and Isaac Fotu were the difference in a 42-27 win for the Green squad in the first half. Smith was content to take a ball-handling back seat while playing alongside Shamburger in the second half.

Bird for Crabbe

In Gary Parrish's article about big shoes to fill on certain college teams, he includes a Bay Area talent:
Jabari Bird
Vitals: 6-6 | Fr. | G

Comment: Allen Crabbe didn't do everything for California last season -- especially considering Justin Cobbs averaged 15.1 points and 4.8 assists per game. But Crabbe did do a whole lot, and Bird, a heralded freshman wing, will likely be asked to step into the starting lineup and be an effective playmaker and scorer right from the jump.

Coach Bob Walsh on "Control"

Coach Bob Walsh is back with a "Giving Up Control" post but it's not as literal as one would interpret. Maybe the better headline would be "Giving Up Control To Remain in Control."

Coach Corn nabs a 2014-15-er.

Via YubaMensHoops: "Yuba Basketball picks up an early commitment from Vasillje Saraba! POY candidate from Del Campo HS! Awesome!"

He's a 6-foot-4 sweet-shooting guard.

The penalties for St. Mary's versus those of Miami

Michael Rogner eviscerates the NCAA outcomes vis-a-vis St. Mary's and Miami. It's he who has the gold, rules Main Street versus Wall Street redux.

Witzel checking out the Hornets

Per Derrick Jones: "Diablo Valley College 6'7" F/C Tom Witzel took an unofficial visit to Sacramento St. today"

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

A Q-and-A with Frank Knight

Had the good fortune of doing a Q-and-A with Moreau Catholic High Coach Frank Knight:

Q: You're in a unique situation at Moreau with a large number of underclass prospects -- I was wondering how do you keep them focused on the task at hand when national recognition is happening with more coming?

Frank Knight: "We told the kids when they decided to attend Moreau that they would really be part of something special. If they wanted to go to 'other' private schools with an already established winning tradition that's fine because there are plenty in the Bay Area, but if you want to really do something transformative and want to be challenged in the classroom and on the court, then Moreau would be a good fit.

So we knew for the most part that everyone who showed up on the first day of school wanted that challenge (not everyone did as we lost Jordan Matthews 6-foot-6 basketball/football player to Mack in Oakland and 6-foot-5 Calvin Lau to Capitol Christian). 

We only have one senior and one junior, the rest of the roster is comprised of sophomores and freshman. It's tough to keep them focused because they are so young and college is literally three and four years away, but we remind them that that senior night games comes quicker than you think. We've had Creighton, Arizona, Arizona State, Cal, St. Mary's, USF, Washington State, New Mexico State, New Mexico, Loyola Marymount, Air Force, and Pepperdine on campus this fall for open gyms. From time to time, you will get players who shoot shots they normally wouldn't shoot but when those coaches are on the sidelines, and your a basketball player, you think that this is your chance. We remind them over and over that a scholarship is earned over several summers of club and several years of high school hoops. We have a self improvement program where once a month we have guest speakers who come in and address important things about the whole recruiting process including speakers from the positive coaching alliance, a speaker on the use of social media, and recruiting 101. Even speakers on how to do an interview, and a dealing with priorities workshop. The kids have bought into the better we do as a whole, the further they will go as individuals. But my phone is constantly ringing.

Q: I can see other schools making a run at getting a few to transfer.

Frank Knight: There have been some schools that have told our players that they would/could start at the other school or shine more. Or that the platform would be better if they went elsewhere. We have lost two players already and could possibly lose others but I'm confident that the group that is here now wants to finish the work we set out to accomplish when they decided to come to Moreau. I recognize with all the choices in Catholic/private/charter and public schools in the area that Moreau Catholic may not be the best fit for everyone. You will be challenged on the floor and in the classroom, but the ones who do stay and commit will have more than a few avenues to continue their educational and athletic careers.

Q: Plus you also have the parents of these kids to deal with.

Frank Knight: All of the parents have their child's best interest at heart. I know that I have four sons and I want them to be successful in the things they decide to do. So I try to approach them like I would want to be approached concerning my sons. I explain to them the benefits of playing under me, someone who has done what your son is attempting to do, earning a college scholarship. That the goal is a free or partially free college education, so that means D-1, D-2, D-3, NAIA are all on the table because few if any will play professionally. That the ball will eventually stop bouncing and what plan do we have to make sure that when it does your son can take advantage of the resources around him? And that I will do everything in my power to make their son the best basketball player I can, prepare them for college level basketball, and teach them life lessons along the way that will go with them forever. 

Thank you Coach Knight.

Simmons in the running to start

Washington Coach Lorenzo Romar is in the midst of determining his starting five:
When asked about point guards Andrew Andrews and Nigel Williams-Goss, Romar indicated they could comprise the starting backcourt with Wilcox. The other open spot is in the front court where Romar said the most talented player may not start. It would seem forwards Shawn Kemp Jr., Desmond Simmons and Jernard Jarreau are in contention for a starting job.

Boyd & Shastri in Silversword uniform

Both De'Von (Sacramento High) Boyd and Kiran (Miramonte High) Shastri went with Chaminade as their college of choice and photos of each in uniform are up:
De'Von Boyd

Kiran Shastri

Tillman ready for an encore

Former Cosumnes River College talent James Tillman is entering his second season at Cal State Los Angeles and as his bio notes: "Led the team in scoring and earned first-team All-California Collegiate Athletic Association honors. Averaged 14.2 points, 5.1 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game."

Artis honored just by inclusion

Per Jeff Faraudo, Dom Artis is on the 2013-14 Bob Cousy Watch List. The competition will be fierce but Artis will be even better this season.

"Culture Guys"

Coach Bob Walsh on "Culture Guys" -- a snippet: "...To re-inforce the values in your program you have to find some time for your "culture guys..."

Siome national notice for Oliver

A tweet from Eric Bossi: "Two "off the radar" to the recruiting world bigs I keep hearing great things about. 2014 Cameron Oliver and 2015 Deyonta Davis"

Interview with Brian Katz

Big Sky Basketball turned up an audio interview with Sacramento State Coach Brian Katz.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Fear the Beard on The Hilltop

Former San Ramon Valley High frontcourter Mark Tollefsen had a little fun at the Dons' Hoopfest.

Sablan hearing from Lewis & Clark

A Stanco Stampede tweet: "Getting interest from Lewis and Clark for Keoni Sablan of Modesto Christian, StanCo Stampede."

Sablan is a 5-foot-11 backcourter.

Silly power plays

For these actions alone, Grambling's Will Sutton and Frank Pogue should be fired immediately because their values aren't in alignment with anyone who should be working with students. The stench is getting stronger.

Athletics and rape culture

Jeff MacGregor lays out his truth in an essay on rape culture.

Simply put, there are no valid perpetrator "excuses" for this happening, nor for society to condone such. Period.

Rick Majerus on dribbling

Jim Boone posted the late Rick Majerus' dribbling commandments.

An Ismail Ali photo

Mel Grussing's Young Ones" Coming Together!! blog post, the above photo appears. It's former San Leandro High point Ismail Ali who made the Antelope Valley College squad this season.

Berry a POY candidate

Big Sky Basketball looks at a trio of Player of the Years candidates in that conference. One is:
Davion Berry

Argument for: Like Jamar, Berry excels in many areas. He shot 52% on twos and 41% on threes last year, while also getting to the line a ton, making him one of the best and more complete scorers in the conference. He has an excellent midrange game. He posted a 23.1 Assist Rate last year, and his 15.7 TO Rate was solid. He is a solid defender. With the talent around him, he seems to have a good knack for knowing when to get his own shot and when to find a teammate. He is the best player on the most talented team in the conference.

Argument against: He is the worst rebounder of the three (1.7 OR%, 13.1 DR%), though he is the only one that has someone like Joel Bolomboy snatching up all available rebounds. He struggled against Montana in the Big Sky title game, shooting 4/10 from the floor and 3/6 from the line while turning it over five times, which some voters might remember (it's worth noting he had some excellent games in the postseason after that Montana game). With the talent around him, he doesn't have to do as much, which could be a reason his efficiency numbers are as good as they are.

Peterson gets offered

Per Cameron Schott: "2014 Archbishop Mitty G Connor Peterson has picked up his first offer from Azusa Pacific"

The AP coaches obviously liked what they saw this weekend.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Newcomer NBA head coaches

Jason Kidd talks about his notebook in Paul Forrester look at the non-veteran incoming coaches in the NBA.

"Midnight Mania" in Stockton

Jagdip Dhillon covers Pacific's "Midnight Mania" which included some former Tigers getting back on the court, albeit some gingerly.

A bit more on Kevin Aronis

Former Santa Rosa Junior College backcourter Kevin Aronis appreciates the support offered by the New Mexico State fans. NMSU is the heavy favorite to win the Western Athletic Conference this season and that means a Big Dance invite.

Arron Mollet and Kiwi Gardner updates

Andrew Matheson/Santa Cruz Sentinel highlights the play of Arron Mollet and Kiwi Gardner after viewing the latest Golden State Warrior tryout camp.

Ali makes AVC squad

It's now on-line at the Antelope Valley College basketball site:
Ismail Ali PG 6-0 160 FR San Leandro (San Leandro '13)

Saturday, October 19, 2013

The NorCal Showcase, Sunday, Antioch Community Center

Sunday October 20 is the NorCal Showcase featuring many of the top local high school basketball players in the area competing against competition from other regions throughout NorCal.  

This is an exposure event with media and press covering the games. They will be streaming video, interviewing the players, providing write-ups and footage to multiple media outlets, colleges, etc.  

The event will be held at the Antioch Community Center across the street from Deer Valley HS and next to the Antioch Water Park / 4703 Lone Tree Way / Antioch / 94531.  

The first game will start at 8:00 a.m. and the last game starting at roughly 8:00 p.m. 9th grade will start the event off and the day will progress by grade level with 12th grade finishing out the evening.  

ANY TEAM SELECT / APT / ALLOUT BLAZE / HOYAS / DELTA EXPRESS MEMBER (players only) WILL GET FREE ENTRY INTO THIS EVENT.  However, additional family members will be charged admission. This will be a wonderful opportunity to expose the youngsters to this type of an event as many of them will undoubtedly participate in the years to come.


Ruben Garcia / TEAM SELECT
(925) 367-3912

Looking at youth sports specialization -- good work by The Chronicle

Tom Fitzgerald writes about sports specialization for youth and those quoted are mixed -- some say its okay, some don't. To some, club team ball is harming participation in other sports.

An Killion mines the financial costs.

Ron Kroichick looks at injuries.

Keating gets extended

Santa Clara Coach Kerry Keating has just received a multi-year contract extension.

This is fascinating. What if the Broncos braintrust had replaced Keating after the 8-22, 0-16 2011-12 season? It was his fourth losing season in five years. Then he goes back to being an assistant for a period of time before getting another head coaching opportunity. Instead, he's secure for the next few seasons, paid reasonably well and hopefully continues his ascent in the coaching ranks. This should make coaches really, really think about who will be their AD, in addition to all the other factors, when considering a position running a program.

Going Miss Cleo on the WCC

Ken Cross/College Chalktalk prognosticates the West Coast Conference season and has former Ponderosa High big Brad Waldow receiving First Team honors plus Rex Walters as Coach of the Year.

20 Minutes at Rucker Park

Obviously not Nor Cal-related but an entertaining read. LINK

Remembering Bill King

Rich Lieberman notes the anniversary of Bill King's passing. He provided the golden age of Warriors radio coverage.

Pacific gets a backcourt verbal

The Verlin-ites have landed another talent: "2014 Crespi Carmelite (CA)/EW Pangos Elite G D.J. Ursery has committed to Pacific"

Via Joel Francisco: "Pacific got a good one in the late-blooming DJ Ursery (Crespi)...Ursery is a wiry SG with a feathery stroke" 

Ursery stands 6-foot-3. 

In this July article, he had offers from Utah State, Weber State, Pacific, Cal State Fullerton and Cal State Northridge.

Miller raving about AD

Here's Arizona Coach Sean Miller heads over heels about Aaron Gordon:
After Pac-12 coaches were done raving about Aaron Gordon on the podium, Miller did the same in a small-group interview.

He was asked if he’d seen anybody with Gordon’s motor.

“Not even close,” Miller said. “Solomon Hill as a senior was as focused and highly motivated and as competitive as I’ve ever seen. But I’ve never seen anybody like Aaron Gordon. It’s not just his motor. It’s his approach to every single thing that he does basketball-wise. He’s full throttle from opening drill to the last one every single day.

“It’s so contagious. When you’re around him, and competing against him, you have to be ready to go because he’s always ready and he’s also very talented.

“So Brandon Ashley and him compete against each other every day and there’s no doubt they make each other better. Part of Aaron’s disposition has made Brandon better. That competitive environment, you can really see it with those two guys.”

There was more.

“He’s almost like a senior in college. He’s focused. He’s very intelligent. He’s really a fantastic person to the core. He’s about the right things. He’s the last to leave and the first to get there. It’s really hard to say where a guy like that can be five years from now because of how hard he works, how smart he is and also how blessed he is. Just from a physical perspective – size, speed, being able to jump -- he’s just got great ability.”
Like the part about Gordon pushing Ashley -- one of those consequential benefits that gets overlooked.

The most important takeaway is that you as a player control your motor. It doesn't require a certain height, weight, degree of quickness, etc.