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.
Calhoun & Izzo Are Friendly Foes; Bennett to Virginia; Smith to UConn; Cal to Kentucky?
The friendship between Jim Calhoun and Tom Izzo dates back a decade to when both men guided their teams to the Final Four for the first time in 1999.
Izzo’s Michigan State team lost to Duke in the national semifinals that year before Calhoun’s UConn club beat the Blue Devils 77-74 for its first national championship.
Ten years later, Calhoun and Izzo will square off again on Saturday in the Final Four at Detroit’s Ford Field.
Read the full story here.
**Speaking of UConn, the Huskies landed a commitment from 6-2 point guard Darius Smith of Chicago Marshall, the No. 19 point guard in the Class of 2009 according to Rivals. He chose the Huskies over Marquette, Arizona and Cincinnati. UConn returns Jerome Dyson and Kemba Walker so Smith gives them another guard. He is their fourth recruit following PF/C Alex Oriakhi and SF Jamal Coombs, teammates at Tilton, and Los Angeles G Jamaal Trice.
**Virginia hired former Washington State coach Tony Bennett to replace the fired Dave Leitao. Steve Landesberg, father of former Queens Holy Cross star Sylven Landesberg, the ACC Freshman of the Year, said his son would stay no matter who the coach was.
**Andy Katz says John Calipariis close to taking the Kentucky job. IT will be interesting to see if DeMarcus Cousins and John Wall follow him. Wall is reportedly down to Memphis and Kansas and one source told me he’d be surprised if it wasn’t Memphis. If Cal leaves for Kentucky, Wall could pick Kansas or potentially follow Cal to Kentucky. Imagine if Kansas lands both Wall and Lance Stephenson? Watch out for the Jayhawks if that happens.
Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.