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Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Friday / April 12.
  • Live from the Seton Hall Media Day with Bobby Gonzalez….Trying to keep us as he talks.

    ON MELVYN OLIVER’S STATUS VIS-A-VIS THE NCAA CLEARINGHOUSE
    We hope to hear something very soon. We’ve very, very optimistic about it. He’s a little bit of a project and he has to lose some weight. He can be a special player for us.

    ON WALK-ONS

    We’re probably going to do that this year. I plan on definitely picking up two or three kids (during tryouts Nov. 3)

    ON HERB POPE & KEON LAWRENCE

    I can’t predict if (Pope) is going to win his appeal (to the NCAA). We will put in an appeal on Keon Lawrence in. He could be eligible right after exams in December. …You’re talking about a kid that could be drafted. If he wins his appeal he will play in DEcember.

    PISCATAWAY, N.J. – Fresh off a 12-10 victory over UConn in which he employed two quarterbacks, Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano says he is open to doing it again this Saturday at No. 23 Pitt.

    Redshirt junior Domenic Natale played on several series against UConn to spell starter Mike Teel, and that process could repeat itself in an effort to spur a sagging offense when the Scarlet Knights (2-5, 1-2 Big East) visit Dave Wannstedt’s Panthers (5-1, 2-0).

    Rutgers ranks last in the Big East in scoring and seventh among eight teams in total offense. The Knights are ranked No. 97 nationally in total offense and 115 in scoring.

    “Dom can run our entire offense,” Schiano said. “That’s the good thing. It’s not where Dom’s in there and he’s a mobile guy that’s going to just move around. He can do everything in our offense in addition to the things that you saw Saturday and some things that you didn’t see Saturday, he’s capable of doing. So that’s a positive.”

    Dominic Cheek had a ball during his trip last weekend to Kansas for “Late Night in the Phog,” but still plans to take four more official visits.

    The 6-foot-5 Cheek, a first-team All-State wing out of St. Anthony in Jersey City and the No. 6 shooting guard in the Class of 2009, will visit Villanova this weekend for Hoops Mania. He then will hit Pittsburgh, Indiana and Memphis over the next three weekends. Rutgers and Seton Hall are also ostensibly in the mix.

    Ben Gamble, associate head coach at St. Anthony, said Cheek came away from Kansas particularly impressed with the development of his former teammate Tyshawn Taylor, a Kansas freshman.

    Rice guard Durand Scott will take an official visit to Miami this weekend, and after that his visits schedule is up in the air.

    “He is going to Miami and we’ll see what happens after the visit,” Dwayne Mitchell, Scott’s coach with the Gauchos AAU program, wrote in a text message.

    The 6-foot-4, 180-pound Scott, the No. 9 shooting guard in the Class of 2009, has already visited Pitt and UConn and had initially planned to see UCLA, Tennessee and Miami in successive weekends in October. But he skipped the UCLA and Tennessee visits the last two weeks to play in the is8 playoffs where the Gauchos lost in the semis to the Playaz Seniors, the eventual champions.

    After contemplating his top two choices over the weekend, Jordan Williams decided on Maryland over St. John’s on Sunday and committed to head coach Gary Williams Monday night.

    “I spoke with him about 10 minutes ago,” the 6-foot-10, 245-pound Williams, a senior forward at Torrington (Conn.) High, said Monday by phone. “My decision was based mainly on the academics. I want to major in criminal justice and Maryland has the top criminal justice program in the country. If something were to happen where I would get hurt and couldn’t play basketball, then I would have something to fall back on.”

    Williams shut down trips to UMass and Providence after narrowing it down to Maryland and St. John’s and also had interest from Arizona, Cal, Siena and Marquette. He joins 6-8 Brooklyn Lincoln forward James Padgett in providing Maryland with a pair of skilled and strong post players. Maryland has no more scholarships to give for ’09, unless someone were to go pro or leave the program for other reasons.

    Check out Rutgers coach Greg Schiano’s presser today where he discusses various topics, from the use of QB Domenic Natale to his deployment of the multi-skilled Eric LeGrand to the dangers presented by Pitt RB LeSean McCoy to how he feels about fans booing starting QB Mike Teel.

    Rutgers (2-5, 1-2 Big East) is coming off a 12-10 victory Saturday over UConn, its first win this season over a Division I opponent. The Knights visit No. 23 Pitt (5-1, 2-0) on Saturday at 3:30 in game that will only be telecast on ESPN360).

    St. Joseph’s coach Phil Martelli continued his trend of recruiting talented players in New Jersey when he secured a verbal commitment Monday from Linden senior big man David Bruce.

    The 6-foot-9, 215-pound Bruce chose St. Joe’s over Seton Hall, St. John’s, Maryland, La Salle, Houston and other schools. He averaged 15 points, 9 rebounds and 3 blocks per game as a junior.

    “David’s going to verbally commit to St. Joe’s,” Linden coach Phil Colicchio said. “They’ve been there from Day One. They were the first ones to offer. I think he’s going to a school that has one of the top coaches in the country. I think a smaller school, smaller class sizes are good for David. It’s close to home, yet far. I’m really big on kids selecting schools based on who comes after you the hardest and I really believe that they wanted him the most.”

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