August 2009 | Page 14 of 16 | Zagsblog
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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.
  • It has been more than a month since Lance Stephenson shocked the college basketball world by picking Cincinnati, and yet “Born Ready” still has not spoken publicly about his decision.

    Bearcats head coach Mick Cronin says Stephenson is adjusting to his new surroundings and acclimating to his new teammates — all in the relative anonymity of a college campus.

    “All is quiet. Just lifting weights, getting in shape, playing every day with the guys,” Cronin said Thursday by phone from his office.

    “It’s harder on his parents, him not being around, than it is on him. He’s really enjoying being out of the fishbowl a little bit. He’s part of  team here. He can walk around as a normal person. He walks around here and most people don’t know who he is yet. I think he’s enjoying that.”

    One of the hottest names on the AAU circuit this summer is J.J. Moore, a 6-foot-5, 190-pound senior wing from Brentwood, N.Y. who will play at South Kent (Conn.) this fall.

    Virtually every Big East assistant I spoke with had interest in Moore.

    Now he is in the process of planning his visits.

    “This week we’re going to set up a schedule to start planning visits,” said Hunt Bresky, Moore’s mentor. “Nothing has been scheduled, although we’re hoping that by the end of August we’ll do a few unofficial visits.”

    Bresky said the list looks like this right now: UConn, Pittsburgh, Louisville, St. John’s, Providence, Marquette, Rutgers, Florida and Oklahoma. Seton Hall was “just getting in on it.”

    NEWPORT, R.I. — The Rutgers men’s basketball team hasn’t made the NCAA Tournament since 1991, and that doesn’t come as news to new Rutgers athletic director Tim Pernetti.

    After taking the job in April, Pernetti has worked closely with head coach Freddie Hill and now he says this is an “important” year for the fourth-year head coach.

    “I think it’s a very important year on a lot of fronts,” Pernetti said Tuesday at Big East Football Media Day. “I think we need to make sure that we’re improving in a lot of ways and I think we need to make sure that we’re competing every single night. There’s no nights off no matter who we’re playing.”

    Kentucky pulled out all the stops for Tobias Harris on his unofficial visit Wednesday — including a meeting with University President Lee T. Todd Jr. — and the school is now in contention to land the 6-foot-8 forward from Long Island.

    “It was good, I liked the visit a lot,” Tobias said Thursday by phone. “The school was good and everything was pretty cool.

    “They’re one of the schools I’m considering right now. I’m just going to keep evaluating other schools and trim the list by the end of August.”

    Harris stopped at Kentucky on his way to Portland, Ore. for the Nike Global Challenge. He has had a tremendous summer on the recruiting circuit, with one Big East assistant telling me he’s “the story of the summer.”

    The Boost Mobile Elite 24 event has been moved from Saturday Aug. 22 to Friday Aug. 21 at Harlem’s Rucker Park. The game will still be shown on ESPNU on Saturday night.

    Also, the second set of 12 players invited to the game was officially released and several New York and New Jersey players are involved:

    Cory Joseph, PG, Findlay (Nev.) Prep

    DaJuan Coleman, PF, Jamesville-DeWitt (N.Y.)

    Dion Waters, SG, Burlington (N.J.) Life Center – SYRACUSE

    Doron Lamb, SG, Oak Hill (Va.) ACademy

    Joe Jackson, PG, Memphis White Station

    Josh Selby, PG, Baltimore Lake Clifton

    Kyrie Irving, PG, Elizabeth (N.J.) St. Patrick

    Myck Kabongo, PG, Newark (N.J.) St. Benedict’s – TEXAS

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