February 2014 | 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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Thursday / August 6.
  • ManhattanBy JADEN DALY

    Special to ZAGSBLOG

    NEW YORK — Who says the MAAC is a one-bid league?

    Manhattan coach Steve Masiello isn’t buying it.

    “For people to say ‘Well, it’s a one-bid league,’ why is it a one-bid league?” Masiello asked after his Jaspers beat regular-season conference champion Iona, 80-77 in overtime, in front of a sellout crowd at Draddy Gymnasium.

    “You mean to tell me Iona, Manhattan, Quinnipiac and Canisius aren’t going to give a 5 seed or a 4 seed a heck of a night? These four teams, if you put them in a 13/4 game, that 4 team’s in trouble. You put them in a 5/12, I’m not saying we’ll win, but you’ll hear, ‘Oh my God, we drew Iona? We drew Quinnipiac?’ That’s not who you want to play.”

    IkennaBuffalo head coach Bobby Hurley on Friday landed a verbal pledge from 6-foot-10 2014 big man Ikenna Smart of Greensboro, N.C. New Garden Friends School.

    The big man is averaging a double-double of 13 points and 13 rebounds.

    “Buffalo has been really good to me and they have showed me that they really want me,” he told SNY.tv.

    “And they did that by coming to my game despite the distance. My visit today has been great. I like the school setting academically. I watched them practice and saw the things that they do. And I tried placing myself in doing it.”

    Allen Iverson wants the crowd to be louderSMU coach Larry Brown was profiled on the HBO show “Real Sports” on Tuesday. He was asked about Allen Iverson, who apparently told the SMU players he was the best player to ever play basketball.

    BRYANT GUMBEL: “Allen Iverson.”

     

    LARRY BROWN: “God put me here to coach him. Now, he might not agree with that.  But, you know that was the most challenging thing that’s ever happened to me in my life.”

     

    BRYANT GUMBEL: “He’d probably say the same.”

    Dusan Ristic, a 7-foot, 240-pound center originally from Novi Sad, Serbia, will visit Arizona this weekend along with 2015 Las Vegas Bishop Gorman big man Chase Jeter.

    “He came here because Arizona recruited him,” Sunrise Christian (KS) coach Kyle Lindsted told SNY.tv. “He’s Arizona’s to lose.”

    Lindsted added that a “boatload [of schools] have contacted” him on Ristic.

    Ristic’s visit to Arizona was previously reported by Scout.com.

    Together, the media (myself included) and NBA types hyped up this current group of freshmen — including those at Kentucky, Kansas, Duke and elsewhere — to the point where expectations were bound to outstrip reality.

    So after Kentucky lost to Arkansas, 71-67 in overtime last night at Rupp Arena, it wasn’t that surprising that a veteran NBA scout texted me, “A media creation, and the media eats its young.”

    Yes, reality has long settled in and it’s apparent that none of these Diaper Dandies are what we thought they might be — not Andrew Wiggins, not Julius Randle and certainly not the Harrison twins.