Wednesday, July 13, 2005

What's Buzzin' in Hoops

In hoops, Isma'il Muhammad has his 2nd outstanding summer league outing, scoring 16 pts (5-8), 6-8 FT, 4 boards (2 off), 1 assist, 5 steals, 3 to's, 6 fouls. So obviously he's showing his tenacious on-ball defense because he fouled out. In the last 2 games his stats look like this - 52 minutes, 35 pts (12-18), 11-14 FT, 6 boards (3 off), 3 assists, 11 steals, 5 to's, 8 fouls. Just outstanding. I hope he keeps it up, because he is the longest shot to make a squad of the graduating Jackets.............................. All 3 incoming Tech freshman (Bell, Aminu, Clinch) will participate in the upcoming Global Games. We have sent a ton of players to the Global Games, including Jarrett Jack, Chris Bosh (MVP), Anthony Morrow, Ra'Sean Dickey, Jeremis Smith (MVP), Zam Fredrick, Ed Nelson (MVP). This will be the 2nd year in a row that all three GT recruits play on the US team. No doubt Georgia Tech have developed a special relationship with the tourney organizors and Coach Hewitt sees the benefits of letting his players go up against the international community. It's a great primer to kids who have been playing high school ball...... Here's the official press release and website. They do play by FIBA rules, and here are the differences between that and the NCAA. The main differences - the court is shorter, the lanes are wider, 3pt shot is a bit longer, 24 second shot clock, you can touch the ball on or above the cylinder (interesting). The tourney will be in Frisco (Dallas) July 24-30. I will add a link under "hoops extras" so you can monitor the action later................... Meanwhile, Will Bynum must have been tearing it up on the offensive glass and got a free meal out of it:

Hungry rookies

Some basketball lessons are delivered on the court. Others are taught when
the dinner check comes. When Taylor Coppenrath and Bynum were getting
inside for too many offensive rebounds against the Celts veterans during a
practice scrimmage, Rivers stepped in.

"Al (Jefferson) and Perk (Kendrick Perkins [news]),''
he said. "You guys have to take Taylor and Will to dinner tonight. On you. This
is a must. No excuses. And no McDonald's either. I want you to take them out to
a nice dinner.

"You can't let people get inside on you for offensive rebounds. Maybe this
will help you remember that.''

Instead of taking in one of the many fine dining spots in Vegas, Jefferson
and Perkins got away relatively cheap by taking the rookies to the buffet at the
Luxor Hotel. "They were full when they left though,'' Jefferson said in his own

Well, a 6'9" PF named Will Paul has chosen Stanford over Georgia Tech and others. He claims to have had an offer from Tech, which he got a couple of weeks ago after "blowing up" at the Kingwood Classic. Interesting as we have not heard a lot about him during the recruiting process. However, he plays on the same AAU Team as Josh Lomars, another recruit with GT interest............. Coach Hewitt was there when big-men recruits Vernon MacKlin and Brandon Wright went head-to-head. Of course he was one of a sea of big-name coaches watching. Wow, Wright has even thrown Vandy into the mix as a possible destination (yeah right)......... Coach Hewitt had to cancel a scheduled visit with Perry Stevenson due to bad weather in ATL. Tubby Smith also had to cancel a visit, and LSU Coach John Brady is scheduled to visit Stevenson today (according to his high school coach at Northside)............

Uh-oh, here we go again - a story on Bobby Cremins and his flip-flop with USC years ago. Of course they actually contacted Coach Cremins for comments

It's something Cremins can joke about now, at least for a moment. But talk to him for any length of time, and the frankly honest Cremins can't hide the pain that lingered for so long.

"It was the toughest time of my life," he said. "You get yourself in a bit of a trap -- yes-no, yes-no -- then finally cross that line only to realize you made a mistake.

"It's really hard. My body actually turned on me. I couldn't sleep, couldn't close my eyes. I felt like Judas."

And as always, Coach Cremins is the most likeable guy in sports. How can you NOT like him when he says stuff like this:

"It's just so hard," Cremins said. "We were talking about South Carolina, my alma mater, and I'm making a complete ass out of myself. It's embarrassing. It really feels terrible, and I'm sure Gene feels terrible for putting Oklahoma in that position.

"I feel for the coach. In a lot of ways, I admire Gene. I really do. Because he's doing the right thing and following his heart."

Speaking of former coaches, Kevin Cantwell is enjoying retired life. Nice story. While he like recruiting guys like Kenny Anderson and Mark Price, he sees the game as different now:

"I miss the coaching, what I don't miss is the profession," Cantwell said. "We were great recruiters (at Tech) and I did enjoy that to an extent, but it got to the point where you were recruiting not just the kid and the parents, but you were recruiting 20 other people. And they weren’t people that had the best interest of the kid in mind.

"It just got disgusting to watch."

Also note that he helped play a role in getting last week's Adidas Camp into the Suwanne Sports Academy, which is where those J.Crittenton pics came from. Cantwell is head of the basketball program at the Academy............

Lastly, a nice Q&A with Will Bynum for Celtic fans............