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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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Saturday / July 4.
  • Some news on a couple of highly recruited big men…

    Dan Wolken of the Memphis Commercial Appeal reports that DeMarcus Cousins, the 6-foot-11 center from Mobile, Ala. who verbally committed to UAB but never signed a Letter of Intent, now lists Memphis as his leader.

    “Before I committed to UAB, Memphis was high on the list as well,” Cousins said. “We already had a relationship, me and Coach Cal [John Calipari]. When I opened [my recruitment] back up, he was the first one to call me, and he’s leading right now.”

    “He’s always felt [strongly] about Memphis,” added Otis Hughley, Cousins’ coach at LeFlore High School. “The only thing that stood in between that is his love for Mike Davis and his respect for Mike. He loves Mike.”

    After dropping 21 and 12 in a 78-66 win over Derrick Favors and South Atlanta Thursday night, Cousins also told reporters he was considering Kansas State, N.C. State, Washington and Wake Forest. He did not even mention UAB.

    Sophomore point guard Davontay Grace scored Thomas Jefferson’s first 10 points in OT and finished with 17 points and 14 assists to lead the Orange Wave to an 87-79 victory Thursday over Boys & Girls in Brooklyn AA action.

    Thomas Jefferson is now in sole possession of first place in the league.

    “We’ve still gotta see what Lincoln and Boys & Girls do,” Jefferson coach Lawrence Pollard said. “Right now we’re in the driver’s seat.”

    Junior forward Joel Wright (pictured) added 30 points and 21 rebounds for Thomas Jefferson.

    Pollard said Wright now holds offers from Fordham, Providence, West Virginia and Central Florida, and that St. John’s and Seton Hall are also involved.

    UConn coach Jim Calhoun said tonight that the Minneapolis home of former Huskies star Khalid El-Amin was attacked Dec. 27 with three Molotov cocktails.

    Calhoun said no one was hurt but that El Amin’s father, Charles, was in the house at the time of the incident.

    “I heard the window break. Something crashed to the floor. When I looked up another one came through and it said ‘Boom!'” Charles El-Amin told WCCO of Minnesota.

    “I was like, ‘Dad come on let’s go, let’s go,'” said Kamillah El-Amin Shabazz.

    El-Amin’s basketball memorabilia was damaged by the fire, and someone broke into the house the next day and stole three TVs.

    NEW YORK –– Fresh off scoring 38 points in Lincoln’s victory over Transit Tech Thursday night, Lance Stephenson arrived a little late for the UConn-St. John’s game at Madison Square Garden.

    But the 6-foot-5 senior guard liked what he saw.

    “This was a good game,” Stephenson said in a Garden hallway after the No. 4 Huskies downed the Johnnies, 67-55, behind 21 points from former Rice High School star Kemba Walker.

    “They played against Connecticut. It was real tough. I think if I come here I could change that around. We would win that game.”

    “Right now we’re 0-4…We gotta win. We gotta find a way to win. South Florida got a win. You’re trying to get off the snide. You’re putting pressure on yourself. You don’t want to put pressure on the team too much because you don’t want the team playing tight. But as a coach you definitely feel it inside and you say to yourself, ‘You gotta find a way to get a win.'”

    –Seton Hall coach Bobby Gonzalez on the pressure of trying to get the first league win

    “The teams in the upper echelon are pressuring themselves to stay in the upper echelon because they’re supposed to be. The teams in the lower echelon are saying, ‘Hey, I don’t want to be last.’ Or if we were picked 13th like we were picked 13th, we don’t want to end up 15th. So I think there’s pressure on anybody in this league no matter what way you look at it.”

    –Gonzo on the pressure facing all 16 teams

    “I haven’t heard a national announcer say anything but that the Big East is the best conference in the country.