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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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Tuesday / April 23.
  • UPDATE 4:50 p.m 3/13/14: Doug McDermott was the unanimous choice for Big East Player of the Year. He was also named a First-Team All-American by the U.S. Basketblal Writers’ Association.**

    NEW YORK — The young man who will be named Big East Player of the Year later today was born in North Dakota, grew up in Iowa, plays college basketball in Nebraska and has never played a single Big East Tournament game inside Madison Square Garden.

    Yet in the next few days, Doug McDermott could burgeon his already historic résumé by  adding a Big East championship ring he can one day tell his kids and grandkids about.

    “I’m really excited,” said McDermott, a lock for Player of the Year honors after averaging  26.5 points and 7.2 rebounds this season.

    “I think it’s an exciting time of the year. As a little kid I always grew up watching the Big East Tournament, so many great games at the Garden there. I just think of certain guys, Kemba Walker, and you think of the Syracuse vs. UConn battles and those guys are no longer in the conference but I think it’s going to be the start of something special here.”

    PitinoNEW YORK — In the last Big East Tournament to include original members Syracuse and UConn, it was a former Conference USA team that won the championship but left the nets hanging inside Madison Square Garden.

    Rick Pitino’s Louisville team stormed back from a 16-point second-half deficit against Jim Boeheim’s Syracuse club and ended up crushing the Orange, 78-61.

    The Big East as we knew it died that night, at 10:52 p.m. EST on March 17, 2013.

    BriscoeBy JOHN PAVIA

    Special to ZAGSBLOG

    JACKSON, N.J. — In the fourth contest between these two teams this season, we were treated to a thrilling game for the Non-Public B South championship in which Roselle Catholic prevailed over The Patrick School, 64-58, proving the adage that it’s very hard to beat a team three times in one year correct.

    Defending Tournament of Champions winner Roselle Catholic will play the survivor of Thursday’s game between St. Anthony’s and Hudson Catholic on Saturday.

    RC was led by Chris Silva, Isaiah Briscoe, Asante Gist and Matt Bullock, who accounted for 48 of the team’s 64 points in the game.

    Matt FarrellAfter receiving an offer from Notre Dame and head coach Mike Brey less than a week ago,  sources have confirmed to SNY.tv that Matt Farrell has officially committed to Notre Dame.

    The 6-foot-1 Farrell out of Point Pleasant Beach High School held offers from Fordham, Rutgers, St. Joe’s and Monmouth and interest from Creighton and Providence and Monmouth. He initially committed to fellow ACC member Boston College before re-opening his recruitment in November.

    “Ever since I was a little kid, it’s been on my mind,” Farrell told Tom Noie of ND Insider. “It’s an opportunity you dream of. The ACC speaks for itself. To do it at a school like Notre Dame, it’s a blessing.”

    “Matt’s a dynamic point guard that makes everyone around him better,” Point Pleasant Beach coach Nick Catania said. “His work ethic and winning attitude are contagious to those around him. At Notre Dame, he will make the game easier to play for his teammates. He is a winner and always puts winning first.”

    MasielloStevie Mas is back in the Big Dance.

    Masiello played on two Final Four teams at Kentucky, winning the 1998 NCAA championship.

    He went as an assistant to Bobby Gonzalez at Manhattan in 2003 and ’04.

    And he danced again four times as an assistant under Rick Pitino at Louisville.

    Now, after his Manhattan team knocked off Iona, 71-68, Monday night in the MAAC championship game, Masiello is going to the Dance for the first time as a head coach.

    It seemed only fitting that one of the first texts he received after the win was from Pitino, his former coach and mentor.

    Joel Embiid2NEW YORK — In a best-case scenario for Kansas, they win their first two or three games without Joel Embiid and then he makes a triumphant return for the Sweet 16 or Elite 8 of the NCAA Tournament at the end of the month.

    If all goes well, Embiid fits in seamlessly and the Jayhawks make a run to the Final Four in North Texas.

    But the worst-case is that Kansas gets bounced on the first weekend and the 7-foot Embiid — the potential No. 1 pick in the NBA Draft — never plays a single game in this NCAA Tournament.

    “He may never play in the NCAA Tournament because they may not get out of the first weekend,” Greg Anthony said Wednesday at a brunch promoting CBS Sports and TNT’s coverage of the NCAA Tournament.

    “It’s that significant of a loss.”

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