2014 BIG Ten – Week 3

Posted on September 14, 2014. Filed under: Football, NCAA Sports | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Week 3…

September 13, 2014

BIG games this week across the board…

I think we all can clearly admit that Big Ten Football hasn’t been that good this season. Last week, they went 8-5 against what some would consider easy opponents. Now in week 3, they faced a fewer tougher opponents. Overall, the league played a lot better but same results going 4-7.

 Washington 44, Illinois 19

The Fighting Illini barely won during the first two weeks, well, that caught up with them during week 3 as Washington dominated them all afternoon.

Washington led 21-3 at the end of the first quarter and 38-12 at the half, thanks in part to two defensive touchdowns from Shaq Thompson. Illinois played a sloppy, miserable game they had no chance of winning. Don’t interrupt Illinois head coach Tim Beckman’s delusions by telling him that, though.

———

 Penn State 13, Rutgers 10

Conference play kicked off with Penn State-Rutgers, in Rutgers’ first-ever Big Ten game. The Scarlet Knights’ much-maligned defense had a strong performance, but Gary Nova’s antics cost them the game.

The Rutgers defense asserted its will from the get-go, shutting out Penn State for the first half. After scraping out a couple field goals in the third and fourth quarter to pull within 10-6, Christian Hackenberg led PSU on a beautiful two-minute drill to take the lead. In response, Nova threw his fifth interception of the game.

It was a rough introduction to the Big Ten for Rutgers

———-

 West Virginia 40, Maryland 37

Heartbreak type of game here….

West Virginia jumped out to a 28-6 lead, but Maryland came back with a combination of red zone defense stances and plays from C.J. Brown and Stefon Diggs. Late in the fourth quarter, Maryland had a punt return from Will Likely to tie the score, and then allowed West Virginia to drive for the game-winning field goal.

———-
Notre Dame 30, Purdue 14

In the battle of Indiana… well, it’s still all about the Irish as they remain perfect.

Purdue was feisty in the first half, grabbing a 14-10 lead in the second quarter and ceding little ground on defense. But the Boilermakers allowed a last-minute touchdown before the half, and they couldn’t string together an offensive drive in the second half until it was too late.

The talent disparity was too great as the Fighting Irish beat the Boilermakers in Indianapolis.

——–
 Bowling Green 45, Indiana 42

The Big Ten’s struggles with the MAC continues as Indiana lost a winnable game to Bowling Green. This game went back-and-forth from the start as each team traded jabs, but in the end, the Hooisers’ defense couldn’t prevent an 88-yard touchdown drive in two minutes, giving up the winning score with nine seconds to go.

———-
 Michigan 34, Miami (Ohio) 10

Michigan needed this win more than a fat kid needs recess, as they suffered an embrassing loss last week at the hands of Notre Dame. So, this was the perfect opponent especially since Miami (Ohio) entered the contest on an 18-game losing streak.

The Wolverines got out to a quick 10-0 lead, but three turnovers in the second quarter let Miami tie the game. But athletic Derrick Green had an outstanding shownig for the Wolverines, rushing for 137 yards and two touchdowns, and the Michigan defense smothered Miami. In the end, this was a well-needed win for Michigan and the Big Ten.

———

Iowa State 20, Iowa 17

TCU 30, Minnesota 7

Nebraska 55, Fresno State 19

BYE: Northwestern, Michigan State, Wisconsin

 

“BIG TEN HELMET STICKER 4 the Week”

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J.T. Barrett, QB, Ohio State – finished the day 23 of 30 passing for 312 yards and six touchdown passes.

 

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2014 BIG Ten – Week 2

Posted on September 8, 2014. Filed under: NCAA Sports | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Week 2…

September 6, 2014

BIG games this week across the board…

The Big Ten went 8-5 in Week 2, and we learned some things in the process. Brace yourself; this won’t be pretty.

Aside from Wisconsin-LSU, the rest of the Big Ten games were blowouts, narrow escapes against inferior teams, or upset losses. Week 2, I argued, would show what the Big Ten was capable of. Oh, did it ever.

Western KentuckyWKentucky 34, Illinoisillinois2014 42

For the second straight week, the Fightin’ Illini came back to snag a victory. This week, it was against stingy Western Kentucky.

WKU led 17-14 at the half, but then Wes Lunt carried the load, or should we say passed the load, by going for 456. Illinois scored three times to take a 42-27 lead in the fourth quarter and survive a last-minute score by the Hilltoppers. It’s not pretty, but Tim Beckman’s team is 2-0.

Central MichiganCMichigan  38, Purduepurdue2014 17

WEST LAFAYETTE, IN. – a sloppy loss for the Boilermakers at home against the MAC.

It was the (Cooper) Rush / (Thomas) Rawls show for the Chippewas (2-0). Rush tossed 2 TD passes, while Rawls ran for two. He finished the game with 31 carries for 155 yards, while Rush finished 11 of 16 for 172 yards with one interception.

It wasn’t even close. Another spark for the visitors came from former Mount Carmel player, Brandon Greer, who returned a 57-yard interception back for the for the first score of the game. Then in about 2-mintues later, Anthony Rice broke a tackle and scored on a 65-yard catch-and-run (14-0).

The Boilermakers got on the board when Danny Etling took the ball in from 4 yards out making the score 14-7. A few series later Rawls scored from two-yards out before halftime making it 21-7. Home team couldn’t get any closer than that.

The Chippewas beat a Big Ten foe for the second time in three seasons and improved to 6-23 against teams currently in the conference.

Purdue (1-1) failed to get its first 2-0 start since 2007 and still hasn’t opened a season with back-to-back wins over Football Bowl Subdivision opponents since 2005.

HowardHoward 25, Rutgersrutgers2014 38

The Scarlet Knights led 31-7 at the half. Despite the late scores and routinely porous defense, Rutgers was the most impressive of the noon teams.

 

Akron 3, Penn State 21

You can say Penn State played down to visiting Akron, as they only had a 7-0 lead at halftime, but the Nitanny Lions got their roar in the second half to get the W.

McNeese State 24, Nebraska 31

Ameer Abdullah came to the rescue for Nebraska in an incredible last-minute touchdown reception saving the Cornhuskers from total embarrassment against McNeese State.

The Cornhuskers let McNeese State hang around far longer than they should have. Leading 14-7 in the second quarter, Tommy Armstrong Jr. threw a lazy out route that McNeese returned 98 yards for a tying score. Nebraska’s offensive line couldn’t give Abdullah holes, and McNeese tied it at 24 with four minutes remaining. With only 20 seconds remaining, Abdullah had a sensational tackle-breaking run after catch to spare Nebraska from ignominy.

NOTE: In the absence of Braxton Miller, the “Abdullah for Big Ten MVP” bandwagon is looking pretty good.

Western Illinois 37, Wisconsin 3

The game began in a weird fashion with a safety on Western Illinois’ opening kickoff return. The Badgers led 2-0 for most of the half, as neither Melvin Gordon (17 carries for 38 yards) nor Tanner McEvoy could produce. At least McEvoy recovered after halftime, completing 17 passes in a row and finishing with three touchdowns, but it was a shaky performance for Wisconsin.

Wisconsin seemed a little out of sorts through the entire first half, but recovered in the second half to produce a deceptively perilous final score.

 Ball State 13,  Iowa 17

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Maryland 24, USF 17

Maryland was supposed to beat South Florida easily. Instead, the Terrapins had six giveaways and had to rely on a blocked punt in the fourth quarter to put away the Bulls.

Middle Tennessee 24, Minnesota 35

Once again Minnesota was out-gained by an opponent, and once again it won by double digits. Minnesota built a 28-0 lead and rode out a rough second half to beat Middle Tennessee.

Unlike Iowa, Minnesota coaches know their strengths (David Cobb, their star running back, is a powerful workhorse) and weaknesses (Mitch Leidner can’t pass) and craft an optimal offense around those limitations. It’s going to get tiring calling the Golden Gophers opportunistic every week.

Northern IllinoisNIU  23, Northwesternnorthwestern2014 15

In spite of Northwestern’s collapse against Cal in the season opener, the Wildcats were a 5 point favorite coming into this game. Go figure!

Like last week, the Wildcats were down early to a 23-7 lead and just couldn’t come back. In short, Northwestern was trounced on the line of scrimmage by a MAC team, an awful sign for Big Ten play.

Michigan Statemichiganstate2014 27, OregonOregon 46

The Ducks were trailing in the third quarter, 27-18, against Michigan State until Marcus Mariota flipped the ball to Royce Freeman (89 yards, 2 scores) and the flood gates opened up. From here, they went on to score the first of four unanswered touchdowns to knock out the Big Ten from a west coast victory.

Mariota went 17/28 for 318 and three touchdowns.

Michigan State was lead by 29/47 for 343 and 2 TDs / 2 INTs.

Michiganmichigan2014 O, Notre DameNotreDame 31

The Irish are for real. After seeing them week one against Rice, there game play was lowered saying who they played, but tonight, whew…. the Irish jumped out early and often knocking off what many thought was the hottest team in the Big Ten in a complete shutout.

Everything went Notre Dame’s way.

Wolverine’s Devin Gardner had four giveaways, including a pick six at the final whistle that didn’t count in the final score and resulted in him getting dinged up. Michigan running backs averaged 2.9 yards per carry.

This game also marks the last game in the Michigan-Notre Dame series, and possibly the rivalry.

NOTE: the Wolverines scoreless for the first time in 30 years.

Virginia TechVaTech 35,  Ohio Stateohiostate2014 21

Michael Brewer passed for two touchdowns on Saturday night and Virginia Tech’s defense stood tough at the end as the Hokies stunned the eighth-ranked Buckeyes 35-21.

”I still have confidence that we have enough skill on this football team to get by people,” Meyer said.

Indiana Bye Week

Stay tuned for next week when the Big Ten’s Week 2 winners try to restore a shred of the conference’s credibility. Iowa-Iowa State, Maryland-West Virginia, Minnesota-TCU, Illinois-Washington and the very first Big Ten game in Rutgers history ought to be worth watching.

 

“BIG TEN HELMET STICKERS 4 the Week”

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OFFENSE: Wes Lunt, Illinois
DEFENSE: Drew Ott, Iowa
SPECIAL TEAMS: N/A
FRESHMEN: N/A

 

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2014 Notre Dame host Rice

Posted on August 29, 2014. Filed under: Football, NCAA Sports | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Irish cruise to victory over Rice…

SOUTH BEND, IN — HE’S BACK….. Senior Everett Golson made his presence felt early and often in the season opener against Rice. He rushed for three touchdowns and threw for two more as the Fighting Irish cruised to a 48-17.

Golson missed all of 2013 because of a suspension for showing, as he put it, “poor academic judgment.” He hadn’t played since the loss to Alabama in the BCS title game at the end of the 2012 season.

He didn’t show any rust in his return. Golson passed for 295 yards and rushed for 41 more.

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“I felt pretty comfortable from the get-go,” Golson said. “I don’t know if it necessarily showed the first couple of drives, but that’s one of those things where you just have to stay at it and keep being persistent in it.

“I think we did a great job of doing that, and it came out pretty good for us.”

The Irish finished the contest with 576 yards of offense.

“Golson was electric,” coach Brian Kelly said. “He kept his eyes downfield, knew when to run, knew when to throw it, and those are things we really talked about. We didn’t want to over‑coach him in that we were going to allow him to get outside the pocket and be a football player and just naturally go play the game. And I thought he did that extraordinarily well.

VAC365-TPOS

Building Men and Women via Athletics

Based on all of the bad press over the last week, due to academic scandal and five players, including three starters, are being held out of practices and games while the school looks into suspected academic dishonesty, this certainly is a positive sign for a program moving forward.

Next week, the Irish face a huge game and rival – Michigan, as the Wolverines stomped no Appalachian State 52-14

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BIG TEN / ACC Challenge

Posted on December 2, 2013. Filed under: NCAA Sports | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

2013 BIG TEN / ACC Challenge

BIGTEN-ACC-Challenge-2013

DECEMBER 2, 2013

This years’ Big Ten/ACC Challenge promises to be two of the most exciting days of the college basketball season, as 24 teams from two powerhouse conferences collide on the hardwood.

The Commissioner’s Cup remains with the Big Ten after a tie in this event last year, although the ACC boasts a 10-3-1 record over its rival conference. It’ll certainly be interesting to see if the ACC can pick up its first win since 2008, especially with so many talented squads in the field.

Here is this years’ schedule and our predictions (in BOLD)…

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NOTE: Three ACC teams were excluded this year: Clemson, Virginia and Wake Forest.

Tuesday, Dec. 3 (all times ET)
7:15 – Indiana at Syracuse (ESPN)
7:15 – Illinois at Georgia Tech (ESPN2)
7:30 – Penn State at Pittsburgh (ESPNU)
9:15 – Michigan at Duke (ESPN)
9:15 – Notre Dame at Iowa (ESPN2)
9:30 – Florida State at Minnesota (ESPNU)

Wednesday, Dec. 4 (all times ET)
7:00 – Maryland at Ohio State (ESPN or ESPN2)
7:00 – Wisconsin at Virginia (ESPN or ESPN2)
7:30 – Northwestern at NC State (ESPNU)
9:00 – North Carolina at Michigan State (ESPN)
9:00 – Boston College at Purdue (ESPN2)
9:30 – Miami at Nebraska (ESPNU)

This is going to be a great tournament and a single game could be the difference between a win or loss—and possibly another tie—in the challenge.

I have it all tied again, but putting pride into the equation could change everything. So, don’t be surprised if the outcome of this challenge comes down to the final minutes of the final game being played on Wednesday night. These two conferences are that evenly matched and it could truly go either way.

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Here are a few fun notes about the Challenge…

•Seven of the 12 games will mark first-time Challenge matchups: Michigan-Duke, Maryland-Ohio State, Miami-Nebraska and Boston College-Purdue, plus the debut of the three new ACC members Syracuse (vs. Indiana), Notre Dame (at Iowa) and Pitt (vs. Penn State).

•In addition to first-time Challenge games, several of the teams are infrequent opponents: Nebraska holds a 3-1 record against Miami; Purdue won both previous meetings against BC; Ohio State and Maryland last played in 1985 with OSU three out of the five all-time games; and Notre Dame will play Iowa for the first time since 1990 and holds a 8-5 series record.

•Old Pennsylvania rivals Pitt and Penn State will meet for the first time since 2005. The Panthers have won the past five contests.

•Illinois/Georgia Tech and Wisconsin/Virginia will follow their first-time Challenge meetings in 2012 with a rematch in the 2013 event. The Illini and Cavaliers won last year’s matchups.

•Best Three Out of Five: North Carolina/Michigan State and Minnesota/Florida State will meet in the Challenge for the fifth time. Both series are 2-2.

•Rubber Match: Northwestern and NC State will square off in the Challenge for the third time. Northwestern won in 2009 and NC State in 2002.

•Syracuse and Indiana have met five previous times in non-Challenge games, with the Orange winning the past four, including last season’s Sweet 16 matchup.

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NCAA Top 10 College Football Poll

Posted on August 15, 2013. Filed under: Football, NCAA Sports | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

2013 College Football pre-season TOP 10

August 15, 2013

Bcs_logo_2010

Seven months removed from the National Championship, and well, it’s that time again… who will win it all?

statefarm1

1.Bama-helmet

 

2. ohiostate-helmet

3. oregeon-helmet

4. stanford-helmet

5. georgia-helmet

6. texasAM

7. SoCarolina-helmet

8. clemson-helmet

9. louisville-helmet

10. florida-helmet

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Look out for… Notre Dame, Florida State, LSU, Oklahoma State, Texas, Michigan, Nebraska

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2012-13 USBWA Women’s All-America Team

Posted on April 10, 2013. Filed under: Basketball, NCAA Sports | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

USBWA Announces 2012-13 Women’s All-America Team

April 3, 2013

For Immediate Release
Contact: Joe Mitch, 314-795-6821

ST. LOUIS (USBWA) – Baylor senior center sensation Brittney Griner became the ninth three-time honoree and was joined by four other repeat selections on the 2012-13 U.S. Basketball Writers Association Women’s All-America Team from last season.

Also selected as repeat All-Americans were Delaware’s Elena Delle Donne, Notre Dame’s Skylar Diggins, Maryland’s Alyssa Thomas, and Baylor’s Odyssey Sims.

Additionally, a first-time sister act has occurred with Stanford’s Chiney Ogwumike, whose sibling Nnemkadi, now with the WNBA Los Angeles Sparks, was a three-time honoree. Texas A&M’s Kelsey Bone is the school’s second player to earn All-America honors.

Former Oklahoma star Courtney Paris and former UConn great Maya Moore are the only four-time honorees since the All-America women’s team gained USBWA status in 1996-97.

Because of the upsets in the Sweet 16, only Notre Dame’s Diggins and Connecticut honorees Stefanie Dolson and Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis, who meet for the fourth time this season in the national semifinals, will be the only honorees participating in the Women’s Final Four at the New Orleans Arena in Louisiana this weekend.

Three seniors, Griner, Delle Donne, and Diggins, expected to be the first three players selected in the WNBA draft on April 15, headline a squad that also has six juniors and one sophomore.

Diggins and UConn teammates Dolson and Mosqueda-Lewis give the Big East three representatives on the squad while Baylor teammates Griner and Sims, who are also past USBWA freshman of the year honorees, give the Big 12 two representatives.

The Atlantic Coast, Pac-12, Southeastern, Big Ten and Colonial Athletic Association each have one representative with Delle Donne being the only honoree from a mid-major school.

Diggins, Griner, Ogwumike, and Lucas were also conference players of the year, respectively in the Big East, Big 12, Pac-12, and Big Ten.

The USBWA Women’s All-America Team is the nation’s best ten players, regardless of position, as selected by the USBWA membership based on regular-season performance. These ten standouts are finalists for the USBWA’s Ann Meyers Drysdale Award as national player of the year, which will be announced Sunday at the New Orleans Sports Arena prior to the start of the NCAA semifinals.

Following is the complete 2012-13 USBWA Women’s All-America Team:

Kelsey Bone, Texas A&M, C, 6-4, Jr., Houston, Texas
Elena Delle Donne, Delaware, G/F, 6-5, Sr., Wilmington, Del.
Skylar Diggins, Notre Dame, G, 5-9, Sr., South Bend, Ind.
Stefanie Dolson, Connecticut, C, 6-5, Jr., Port Jervis, N.Y.
Brittney Griner, Baylor, C, 6-8, Sr., Houston, Texas
Maggie Lucas, Penn State, G, 5-10, Jr., Narberth, Pa.
Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis, Connecticut, F, 6-0, So., Anaheim Hills, Calif.
Chiney Ogwumike, Stanford, F, 6-3, Jr., Cypress, Texas
Odyssey Sims, Baylor, G, 5-9, Jr., Irving, Texas
Alyssa Thomas, Maryland, F, 6-2, Jr., Harrisburg, Pa.

By conference:
Big East (3); Big 12 (2); ACC (1);
Big Ten (1); CAA (1); Pac-12 (1); SEC (1).

By class:
Seniors (3); Juniors (6); Sophomores (1); Freshmen (0).

The U.S. Basketball Writers Association, formed in 1956, has named a women’s All-America team since the 1996-97 season. The association has also named a national player of the year since 1987-88 and a national coach of the year since 1989-90. In 2002-03, the USBWA initiated an award for the nation’s top freshman.

For more information about the USBWA and its award programs, contact Executive Director Joe Mitch in the Missouri Valley Conference office at 314-795-6821.

Related link: * All-time USBWA women’s honors

 

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2013 McDonald’s All-American Game

Posted on April 7, 2013. Filed under: Basketball, Boys High School Basketball, Girls High School Basketball, High School Basketball | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Girls and Boys… East meets West for braggin rights!!!

April 3, 2013

mcdonalds2013

Playing in the 36th annual McDonald’s HS All American Game (McDAAG) is almost a golden ticket to super-stardom on the collegiate or professional level. Since 1977, legendary players like Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, Shaquille O’Neal, and more have all gotten their initial national exposure from playing in the McDonald’s Game.

PoweradeJAMFEST

There is no such thing as a sure thing in sports, but that hardly has us putting down our crystal balls in the form of amateur tournaments and all-star exhibitions. The McDAAG is no different, and has always been a chance to see the special young stars of today and daydreaming of where they will land just a few years from now.

The McDAAG is always about looking into the future, to see what these kids will do when they become men. In the case of Taya Reimer and Jabari Parker, Players of the Year, it’s safe to say that it will be all good things.

Indiana standout Taya Reimer, and Four-time Illinois state champion Jabari Parker hold up their McDonald's All American jerseys accompanied by Joe Wootten, left, the son of Morgan Wootten, and Douglas Freeland, right, Director of McDonalds All American Games after being picked as the national prep basketball players of the year Monday, March 18, 2013, in Chicago. The award, named for legendary Maryland high school coach Morgan Wootten, is awarded annually to the top male and female McDonald's All-American players. (caption provided by AP)

Indiana standout Taya Reimer, and Four-time Illinois state champion Jabari Parker hold up their McDonald’s All American jerseys accompanied by Joe Wootten, left, the son of Morgan Wootten, and Douglas Freeland, right, Director of McDonalds All American Games after being picked as the national prep basketball players of the year Monday, March 18, 2013, in Chicago. The award, named for legendary Maryland high school coach Morgan Wootten, is awarded annually to the top male and female McDonald’s All-American players. (caption provided by AP)[/caption]

GIRLS: West 74, East 55

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Final high school game…. what a way to end this chapter, and prepare for the next…. Senior guard Linnae Harper stood in the middle of a huddle of McDonald’s Americans at the United Center and initiated the celebratory cry.

“Whose side? West Side!” as the West defeated the East 92-64 in the girls McDonald’s All-American game.

Harper, a Kentucky-recruit, did a lot for the players visiting Chicago, including giving a tour of the city and recommending places to eat, but on Wednesday night, she pushed the pace of the game and helped her team snag a big victory adding eight points, five assists, three rebounds and two steals.

“Usually when I start the games, my first goal is to get a steal,” Harper said. “That brings intensity and energy to the game, and eventually that affected the team. We were just on a roll.”

At the half, the West led 45-35 and didn’t relinquish the comfortable lead. Harper directed a 7-0 second-half spurt in which she had a steal, two assists and a long jumper.

Also at halftime, Harper was given a different award, the Jack Daly Sportsmanship award, which she shared with Erica McCall and Kelsey Plum. It was a tribute, she said, to her desire to make sure her teammates enjoyed her city.

“I’m going around and showing them the best of Chicago because I would hope if I went to their state, they would give me the best of where they live at,” Harper said. “It’s all about giving back.”

“She did a great job coming out, anticipating, getting steals and buckets for us,” said West coach Anthony Smith, of Bolingbrook. “That’s the type of kid and player she is. It was great to see.”

Tennessee recruit, Mercedes Russell (Springfield, OR), was named the game’s MVP after finishing with 16 points, 12 rebounds and three blocks for the West.

North Carolina recruit Diamond DeShields led the East with 15 points and five rebounds, while Harper’s future Kentucky teammate, Makayla Epps, added 13 points.

High School Player of the Year Notre Dame recruits Taya Reimer (2 points, 3 blocks) and Lindsay Allen (4 points, 6 rebounds) teamed up for the losing side with Northwestern recruit Nia Coffey (2 points, 6 rebounds).

“I could have done a lot better personally, but it’s really not about individual stuff,” Allen said. “It’s playing together, having fun.”

NOTABLE PERFORMERS: West — Tyler Scaife, 15 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists; Jordan Reynolds, 10 points, 11 rebounds. East — Diamond DeShields, 15 points, 5 rebounds, 4 steals; Makayla Epps, 13 points.

Harper’s, now famous pre-game meal of the chicken skin mixed with ranch and french dressing, continues to help her basketball performances now for the Lady Wildcats.

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BOYS: West 110, East 99 Game

Talk about a stellar high school basketball career for Duke-recruit, Jabari Parker, from Chicago Simeon. And on Wednesday night, helped his All-American Squad (West), to a 110-99 victory over the East in front of his base-fans in Chicago at the United Center.

“It was the best experience so far,” Parker said. “Getting a chance to play in front of a lot of family. I saw a lot of my coaches out there, having Coach Mike coach me. A lot of people don’t know I was about to go to Mount Carmel if I didn’t go to Simeon.”

Matched against the number 1 ranked, undecided player, Andrew Wiggins, Parker immediately made his presence felt defensively. He had two quick blocked shots, including Wiggins’ first attempt from the perimeter. He managed to stay in front of Wiggins more often than not, but did commit five fouls in the process.

“It went pretty good,” Parker said. “He is super athletic so I had to over-commit on the drive, but he can shoot so it was kind of difficult. He is a great player.”

Parker didn’t have a problem getting his shot off on the other end, but getting the ball to drop was another matter. He was 4-for-13 shooting from the field and 2 of 2 from the line. Wiggins, on the other hand, was 6 of 10 and 7 of 8 for 19 points.

“Going against Jabari is the best going against the best,” Wiggins said. “I look forward to doing it in the future.”

Parker was asked if the evening was bittersweet because it was his final high school game. Parker replied “I think I have another game,” Parker said. “It is on the D.L. (down low) right now. It will surprise a lot of people.”

Parker finished with 10 points, eight rebounds, three assists, two steals and two blocked shots.

Arizona-bound forward Aaron Gordon, California’s Mr. Basketball, had 24 points and eight rebounds to claim MVP honors.

Attendance: 15,818 at the United Center.

FUN NOTE: Record number of fans who attended the 2011 game at the United Center in Chicago. Last year’s attendance, also at the United Center, was 16,308. The attendance for the 2013 game was 15,818.

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Another successful McDonald’s All-American event and this clearly means the future of college hoops is in good hands!

JABARI PARKER CAREER

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2010 National Freshman of the Year (ESPN HS)
2011 National Sophomore of the Year (ESPN HS)
2012 National Junior of the Year (ESPN HS & MaxPreps.com )
2011 USA Basketball’s Male Athlete of the Year
2012 National Player of the Year (Gatorade)
2012 Statewide Player of the Year (Gatorade, Illinois Mr. Basketball)
2012 First team All-American (ESPN HS, SLAM, USA Today)
2013 All-American (Jordan, McD’s)
2013, 2012, 2011, 2010 IHSA state champion
2013 National Player of the Year (McD’s/Wootten)
2013 Statewide Player of the Year (Gatorade, Illinois Mr. Basketball)

****McDONALD’S ALL-AMERICAN GAME****

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The McDonald’s All-American Game consist of the top players, each team plays a single exhibition game after the conclusion of the high-school basketball season, in an East vs. West format. As part of the annual event, boys also compete in a slam dunk contest, a three-point shooting competition, and an overall timed skills competition. The girls compete in the three-point shooting competition and the overall-skills competition. The boys’ game has been contested annually since 1978, and the girls game has been played each year since it was added in 2002.

The McDonald’s All-American designation began in 1977 with the selection of the inaugural team. That year, the All-Americans played in an all-star game against a group of high school stars from the Washington, D.C. area. The following year, the McDonald’s game format of East vs. West was begun with a boys contest. In 2002, with the addition of a girls contest, the current girl-game / boy-game doubleheader format began.

The McDonald’s All-American Team is the best-known of the American high-school basketball All-American teams. Having the designation of McDonald’s All-American instantly brands a player as one of the top high-school players in the United States or Canada.

The teams are sponsored by McDonald’s, the fast-food chain. Proceeds from the annual games go to local Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) and their Ronald McDonald House programs.

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2013 McDonald’s American Game Preview

Posted on April 3, 2013. Filed under: Basketball, Boys High School Basketball, Girls High School Basketball, High School Basketball | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Best of the best on one court…

April 2, 2013


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The 36th annual McDonald’s All-American games activities kicked off Sunday with the players’ visit to the new Ronald McDonald House in Streeterville, where boys and girls players spent time with families.

This is definitely an event I’ve been mentally preparing myself for almost as if it were the opening tip of the NBA playoffs due to the level of players selected on one floor in the house Michael built at United Center.

Things get started with Chicago’s lovable son, Jabari Park, Player of the Year from Simeon, who just completed a 4-peat in the Illinois High School Association Title run. Mr. Parker is being recognized as one of the best out of Chicago since Derrick Rose, Ben Wilson, Tim Hardaway and Mark Aguirre.

Then you have what is now being called the “new Fab Five…” Kentucky Wildcats recruits. Coach John Calipari has six of the 25 players selected to participate on the boys roster will be playing ball for him in Kentucky this fall. No college has drawn this many McDonald’s All-Americans in a single class.

Kentucky-bound McDonald’s All-Americans in the ESPN rankings also include No. 3 Julius Randle, No. 5 Andrew Harrison, No. 6 James Young of Rochester (Mich.), No. 7 Aaron Harrison, No. 11 Dakari Johnson of Montverde (Fla.), and No. 18 Marcus Lee of Deer Valley (Calif.).

“It’s our way to start off our season for next year,” said Kentucky recruit Julius Randle, of Prestonwood Christian in Texas. “It’s good to hang out with everybody and get a good feel for each other, just have fun while we’re doing this.”

Randle, a 6-foot-9 forward ranked the No. 3 recruit in the country by ESPN, had planned for a couple of weeks to make his college announcement on March 20. The day before he committed, Kentucky suffered a shocking 59-57 loss to Robert Morris in the NIT, ending a season in which it lost star Nerlens Noel to an ACL tear en route to a 21-12 record.

MEDIA DAY COVER
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Randle’s announcement — spurred by his desire to win a national championship, he said — immediately turned the page and sparked debate about whether the Wildcats’ recruiting class could be considered the best in history.

“If you go by paper and rankings, maybe you can say (it’s the best class), but we haven’t done anything yet,” Randle said. “We have to prove ourselves.”

The recruits learned that watching Kentucky this season.

“They had a good amount of talent on their team. I guess they just couldn’t put it together at the right times,” Andrew Harrison said. “I feel like the team this year lacked a little bit of leadership. Coach (Calipari) told me he’s depending on me to bring that, so I’m definitely going to try to do that.”

McDonald’s All-American Andrew Wiggins, a 6-8 forward from Huntington Prep (W.Va.) and the nation’s top recruit, said Sunday he will decide by mid-May between Kentucky, Kansas, North Carolina and Florida State.

Click below to read recap….

PoweradeJAMFEST

Despite the neverending comparisons to Lebron James and Kevin Durant (for his quiet, yet relentless approach), Wiggins’ game is unique to only him, with his own true deficiency being he gets “bored” at times playing kids his own age, according to his high school coach Rob Fulford. Those not yet willing to sip the kool-aid on Wiggins should take a gander at this highlight mixtape.

While the game Wednesday night won’t make or break Wiggins, Parker, Randle or any high school senior suited up, calling the All-American Game a “stepping stone” is short-changing the power of the moment. Stages like this can and have accelerated the process of morphing phenoms into stars, and stars into walking, breathing brands.

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Other McDonald’s All-Amercan Game Notes:

The rosters for the 2013 boys and girls McDonald’s All-American game can be found at http://www.mcdonaldsallamerican.com/aag/en/gamescenter/2013-Team.html.

The games will be played on April 3, in Chicago (Ill.) at the house Michael Jordan built (United Center), with the girls’ game starting at 6 p.m. CDT on ESPNU and boys’ game beginning at 8:30 p.m on ESPN.

– The selection of Taya Reimer to this year’s game made McDonald’s All-American history as she became half of the first father-daughter duo to be selected to the game. Her father, Ben Davis, was selected to the game in 1991.

– Duke and North Carolina each have three recruits playing in this year’s game while four other schools teams also have multiple selections. The other four teams with multiple selections are Notre Dame, Stanford, Kentucky and Tennessee.

– Kaela Davis, the number two-rated prospect by ESPN Hoopgurlz, missed a good chunk of her high school season to get treated for Meniere’s disease. Davis has battled the disease, which is an inner-ear disorder characterized by hearing loss and vertigo, since she was 11. Davis is expected to play in the McDonald’s game as well as for Georgia Tech next season.

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2013 USBWA Awards

Posted on March 10, 2013. Filed under: Basketball, NCAA Sports, Sporting News, Sports Business | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

2013 Oscar Robertson National Player of the Year Trophy

ST. LOUIS (USBWA) – The U.S. Basketball Writers Association has selected 14 outstanding players as finalists for its 2013 Oscar Robertson National Player of the Year Trophy presented by Aflac and eight standout freshmen as finalists for the Integris Wayman Tisdale Award.In addition, 20 outstanding female players have been nominated for the 2013 Ann Meyers Drysdale Award Midseason Watch List. The awards is to be presented to the women’s national player of the year by its namesake at the USBWA women’s awards press conference on April 7 in the interview room of the New Orleans Arena, 3:30 p.m. local time prior to the start of the NCAA Women’s Final Four semifinals, which is a change from the morning breakfast in past seasons.Members of the association’s board of directors chose the finalists and the entire 900-member USBWA will vote on the awards as well as the annual All-America and All-District teams.The recipients are to be announced on Friday, April 5 in Atlanta at a 9:15 a.m. ET press conference and then formally presented at the Devon Energy College Basketball Awards on Mon., April 15 at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City. The Henry Iba Coach of the Year Award will also be presented at the gala to be held annually the Monday following the NCAA Men’s Final Four.Following are the finalists for the Oscar Robertson National Player of the Year Trophy:

Oscar Robertson National Player of the Year Trophy

2013 OSCAR ROBERTSON TROPHY FINALISTS

Pos., Player, School, Ht., Wt., Yr., Hometown

F Anthony Bennett, UNLV, 6-8, 240, Fr., Brampton, Ont.

G Trey Burke, Michigan, 6-0, 190, So., Columbus, Ohio

G Michael Carter-Williams, Syracuse, 6-6, 185, So., Hamilton, Mass.

F Doug McDermott, Creighton, 6-8, 225, Jr., Ames, Iowa

G Ben McLemore, Kansas, 6-5, 195, Fr., St. Louis, Mo.

G Victor Oladipo, Indiana, 6-5, 214, Jr., Upper Marlboro, Md.

F Kelly Olynyk, Gonzaga, 7-0, 238, Jr., Kamloops, B.C.

F Mason Plumlee, Duke, 6-10, 235, Sr., Warsaw, Ind.

F Otto Porter, Georgetown, 6-8, 205, So., Sikeston, Mo.

G Marcus Smart, Oklahoma State, 6-4, 225, Fr., Flower Mount, Texas

G Russ Smith, Louisville, 6-0, 165, Jr., Brooklyn, N.Y.

F Deshaun Thomas, Ohio State, 6-7, 215, Jr., Fort Wayne, Ind.

C Jeff Withey, Kansas, 7-0, 235, Sr., San Diego, Calif.

F Cody Zeller, Indiana, 7-0, 240, So., Washington, Ind.

Following the list of finalists for the Integris Wayman Tisdale Freshman of the Year Award:

2013 INTEGRIS WAYMAN TISDALE AWARD FINALISTS

Wayman Tisdale Award

Pos., No., Player, School, Ht., Wt., Yr., Hometown

F Anthony Bennett, UNLV, 6-8, 240, Fr., Brampton, Ont.

G Jahii Carson, Arizona State, 5-10, 175, Fr., Mesa, Ariz.

G Gary Harris, Michigan State, 6-4, 205, Fr., Fishers, Ind.

G Ben McLemore, Kansas, 6-5, 195, Fr., St. Louis, Mo.

G/F, Shabazz Muhammad, UCLA, 6-6, 225, Fr., Las Vegas, Nev.

F Nerlens Noel, Kentucky, 6-10, 228, Fr., Everett, Mass.

G Marcus Smart, Oklahoma State, 6-4, 225, Fr., Flower Mound, Texas

G Rasheed Sulaimon, Duke, 6-4, 185, Fr., Houston, Texas

2013 ANN MEYERS DRYSDALE MIDSEASON WATCH LIST

Ann Meyers Drysdale Award

G Kayla Alexander, Syracuse, 6-4, Sr., Milton, Ont.

G Alex Bentley, Penn State, 5-7, Sr., Indianapolis, Ind.

C Kelsey Bone, Texas A&M, 6-4, Jr., Houston, Texas

F Gennifer Brandon, California, 6-2, Jr., Sylmar, Calif.

G/F Elena Delle Donne, Delaware, 6-5, Sr., Wilmington, Del.

G Skylar Diggins, Notre Dame, 5-9, Sr., South Bend, Ind.

C Stefanie Dolson, Connecticut, 6-5, Jr., Port Jervis, N.Y.

G Kelly Faris, Connecticut, 5-11, Sr., Plainfield, Ind.

G Angel Goodrich, Kansas, 5-4, Sr., Tahlequah, Okla.

G Chelsea Gray, Duke, 5-11, Jr., Manteca, Calif.

C Brittney Griner, Baylor, 6-8, Sr., Houston, Texas

F Tianna Hawkins, Maryland, 6-3, Sr., Clinton, Md.

G Maggie Lucas, Penn State, 5-10, Jr., Narberth, Pa.

G A’dia Matthies, Kentucky, 5-9, Sr., Louisville, Ky.

F Kaleena Moaqueda-Lewis, Connecticut, 6-0, So., Anaheim Hills, Calif.

F Chiney Oguwmike, Stanford, 6-3, Jr., Cypress, Texas

G/F Niveen Rasheed, Princeton, 6-0, Jr., Danville, Calif.

G Odyssey Sims, Baylor, 5-8, Jr., Irving, Texas

F Alyssa Thomas, Maryland, 6-2, Jr., Harrisburg, Pa.

C Elizabeth Williams, Duke, 6-3, So., Virginia Beach, Va.

Tickets and sponsorship information for the Men’s is Devon Energy College Basketball Awards are available at collegebasketballawards.com or by contacting Scott Hill (405-749-1515, scott.hill@access-sports.net). The April 15 banquet will also honor Michigan State coach Tom Izzo as the recipient of the Wayman Tisdale Humanitarian Award.

Awards for NCAA Women’s finalist will be presented April 7 in the interview room of the New Orleans Arena, 3:30 p.m. local time prior to the start of the NCAA Women’s Final Four semifinals, which is a change from the morning breakfast in past seasons. In addition, the coach of the year award will be presented as will the Pat Summitt Most Courgeaous Award. New Marquette women’s assistant coach Tyler Summitt, the son of the former Hall of Fame Tennessee coach, will be one of the presenters of the award given to his mother a year ago for her courageous battle against early onset dementia.

Since the 1958-59 season, the USBWA has named a National Player of the Year. In 1998, the award was named in honor of the University of Cincinnati Hall of Famer and two-time USBWA Player of the Year Oscar Robertson. It is the nation’s oldest award and the only one named after a former player.

The USBWA has chosen a national freshman of the year since the 1988-89 season when LSU’s Chris Jackson was the recipient. Last season, Kentucky’s Anthony Davis became the second winner of the Wayman Tisdale Award. Other notable previous winners of the national freshman of the year award include Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony, Jason Kidd and Chris Webber.

The U.S. Basketball Writers Association was formed in 1956 at the urging of then-NCAA Executive Director Walter Byers. With some 900 members worldwide, it is one of the most influential organizations in college basketball. It has selected an All-America team since the 1956-57 season. For more information on the USBWA and its award programs, contact executive director Joe Mitch at 314-795-6821.

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2012-13 NCAA Players of the Week

Posted on January 16, 2013. Filed under: Basketball, Basketball, NCAA Sports | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

2013 NCAA Players of the week

care of U.S. Basketball Writers Association

ST. LOUIS (USBWA) – The U.S. Basketball Writers Association picks a top player, each week of the 2012-13 season, from both Men and Women’s basketball, and award them with the National Player of the Week. The USBWA’s weekly honor will be handed out each Tuesday through Feb. 19 this season. The Men’s award is named after Oscar Robertson, and the Women’s awards Ann Meyers Drysdale.

Here’s the winners of the Oscar Robertson National Players of the Week:

Week of Feb. 17: Michael Lyons, Air Force (Mountain West Conference)

Week of Feb. 10: Mason Plumlee, Duke (Atlantic Coast Conference)

Week of Feb. 3: Shane Larkin, Miami (Atlantic Coast Conference)

Week of Jan. 27: Darrun Hilliard, Villanova (Big East Conference)

Week of Jan. 20: Roosevelt Jones, Butler (Atlantic 10 Conference)

Week of Jan. 13: Elston Turner, Texas A&M (Southeastern Conference)

Week of Jan. 6: Trey Burke, Michigan (Big Ten Conference)

Week of Dec. 30: Shabazz Muhammad, UCLA (Pac-12 Conference)

Week of Dec. 23: Victor Rudd, South Florida (Big East Conference)

Week of Dec. 16: Doug McDermott, Creighton (Missouri Valley Conference)

Week of Dec. 9: Brandon Paul, Illinois (Big Ten Conference)

Here’s the winners of the Ann Meyers Drysdale National Players of the Week:

Week of Feb. 17: Keiera Ray, Pennsylvania (Ivy League)

Week of Feb. 10: Kelia Shelton, Louisiana Tech (Western Athletic Conference)

Week of Feb. 3: Khaalidah Miller, Georgia (Southeastern Conference)

Week of Jan. 27: Chiney Ogwumike, Stanford (Pac-12 Conference)

Week of Jan. 20: Stefanie Dolson, Connecticut (Big East Conference)

Week of Jan. 13: Brittney Griner, Baylor (Big 12 Conference)

Week of Jan. 6: Kayla McBride, Notre Dame (Big East Conference)

Week of Dec. 30: Karisma Penn, Illinois (Big Ten Conference)

Week of Dec. 23: Kelsey Bone, Texas A&M (Southeastern Conference)

Week of Dec. 16: Chucky Jeffery, Colorado (Pac-12 Conference)

Week of Dec. 9: Maggie Lucas, Penn State (Big Ten Conference)

This is the fourth season that the USBWA has selected a national player of the week. The weekly Oscar Robertson National Player of the Week will be considered for the Oscar Robertson Trophy watch list, which will be released at mid-season.

Since the 1958-59 season, the USBWA has named a National Player of the Year. In 1998, the award was named in honor of the University of Cincinnati Hall of Famer and two-time USBWA Player of the Year Oscar Robertson. It is the nation’s oldest award and the only one named after a former player.

And at the Women’s NCAA Final Four in Denver last April, the organization (USBWA) announced going forward that the Women’s national and weekly player award has been named for Hall of Famer and former UCLA All-American Ann Meyers Drysdale. At the conclusion of the regular season, the USBWA will name finalists for the award, which is voted on by the entire membership of the USBWA. The winner of the 2013 Ann Meyers Drysdale National Player of the Year will be announced and presented at the USBWA’s annual awards breakfast in New Orleans, site of the 2013 NCAA Women’s Final Four.

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At the conclusion of the regular season, the USBWA will name finalists for the award, which is voted on by the entire membership. The winner of the Oscar Robertson Trophy presented by Aflac will be presented by its namesake, Oscar Robertson, at the Devon Energy College Basketball Awards on April 15, 2013, at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City. The Henry Iba Coach of the Year Award and the Integris Wayman Tisdale Freshman of the Year Award will also be presented at the gala to be held annually the Monday following the NCAA Men’s Final Four. At last season’s Women’s Final Four, it was also announced that former Tennessee coach Pat Summitt, who was the female recipient of the Most Courageous Award for her battle against early onset dementia, Alzheimer type, would have that award named in her honor.

The U.S. Basketball Writers Association was formed in 1956 at the urging of then-NCAA Executive Director Walter Byers. With some 900 members worldwide, it is one of the most influential organizations in college basketball. It has selected an All-America team since the 1956-57 season. For more information on the USBWA and the Oscar Robertson Trophy, contact executive director Joe Mitch at 314-795-6821.

Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook, the most comprehensive college basketball publication in the world, returns for its 32nd season, bigger and better in 2012-13. Blue Ribbon – long-known as “The Bible of College Basketball” – gives its readers the most thorough, up-to-date and timely evaluations of every Division I team in the country. For more information about Blue Ribbon Yearbooks, visit blueribbonyearbookonline.com.

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