October 2013 | Page 8 of 25 | 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 / July 12.
  • The way Rick Pitino sees it, Louisville is one Final Four away from a mini-dynasty.

    “It’s going to be an exciting season,” Pitino said, according to The (Louisville) Courier-Journal. “We are one year away from a potential mini-dynasty — one year.”

    Louisville reached the Final Four in 2012 and then won the NCAA championship in April. If they get back to the Final Four this year, that would be three in a row.

    PISCATAWAY, N.J. — New Rutgers coach Eddie Jordan faces a unique situation as he heads into his first year at the helm of his alma mater.

    He takes over a program that has just left the Big East and will spend one year in the American Athletic Conference — where Rutgers was picked 10th out of 10 teams — before entering the Big Ten in 2014.

    Beginning next year, that will mean a regular slate of games against a powerhouse league that currently has five teams in the Top 25 of the Coaches’ Poll: No. 2 Michigan State, No. 9 Michigan, No. 10 Ohio State, No. 21 Wisconsin and No. 24 Indiana.

    One thing’s for sure: Jordan and his staff must step up their recruiting efforts if they are going to compete with the big boys.

    “Recruiting is important and obviously for our recruits, we can sell the Big Ten because they’re coming in for that year,” Jordan said Tuesday at Rutgers media day.

    PISCATAWAY, N.J. — Amid the turbulence of the Mike Rice firing last April, Rutgers standouts Kadeem Jack and Myles Mack both said multiple schools tried to recruit them to transfer.

    “A lot of schools called, a lot of schools called, around 7 to 10,” the 6-foot-9 Jack, a redshirt junior, told SNY.tv and the Daily News Tuesday at Rutgers media day.

    Jack declined to name the schools, but said, “There were a couple of wows in there that blew me away a little bit.”

    A former Rice High School and South Kent (Conn.) standout, Jack was a highly- regarded recruit coming

    Nerlens Noel’s agent says it’s “premature” to report that the Philadelphia 76ers rookie will sit out the entire NBA season while he recovers from ACL surgery.

    “I think it’s premature to make any determination at this point,” agent Andy Miller told SNY.tv, echoing comments he made to other outlets. “He will continue to follow rehab protocol and we will take each day one step at a time.”

    Sixers coach Brett Brown said Monday that the 6-foot-10 Noel — the No. 6 overall pick in the NBA Draft after his freshman year at Kentucky — would likely miss the whole season.

    Having visited Kansas over the weekend, Tyus Jones and Jahlil Okafor will now take their final trip to Duke this coming weekend, giving legendary coach Mike Krzyzewski the chance to close the dynamic duo.

    Houston St. John’s wing Justise Winslow will also visit Duke following his trip to Arizona this past weekend.

    “I’m looking forward to seeing the campus, the general atmosphere, talking to the players, talking to the coaches, getting a feel for it,” the 6-foot-10 Okafor out of Chicago Whitney Young recently told SNY.tv.



    Special to ZAGSBLOG

    On Monday, three players in the class of 2014 committed.

    Joe Burton, a 6-foot-6, 195 pound small forward out of Lutheran North HS (Oklahoma), committed to Oklahoma State, joining center Mitchell Solomon and guards Jared Terrell and Jeff Newberry as the fourth player to commit in the class for coach Travis Ford. The 53rd ranked player in the country by ESPN, Burton chose the Cowboys over Oregon and Oklahoma.

    “They made me feel like I was a part of the family when I went on the visit,” Burton told SNY.tv of Oklahoma State. “Most of my friends told me that when you visit there, you just feel like you belong there, and thats how it felt when I went on the visit.

    Burton is the second player in the ESPN Top 100 in the class of 2014 to commit to Oklahoma State, with Terrell being the other. Burton feels like the relationship between the two that they struck up on the visit will help out when they arrive to Stillwater.

    “I actually took my visit with Jared,” Burton said. “I got to spend a lot of time with him that weekend. I actually got a little bit of a vibe that Jared was going to commit, because we had such a great time down there.”

    Brett Jolly, a 6-foot-10, post-graduate power forward out of Blair Academy (NJ) committed to St. Louis University, joining Davell Roby, Marcus Bartley and Austin Gillman,  making him the fourth player to commit to the Billikens. A versatile big man with good touch inside, Jolly is expected to make an impact for coach Jim Crews.

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