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The top national college basketball news, featuring a daily roundup of the big national college basketball stories that matter. Also hit our college basketball forum.

College Basketball News, Rumors and Hot Stories from May, 2018

May 24

A matchup of potential top-five programs Kansas and Kentucky will serve as the centerpiece of the SEC/Big 12 Challenge on Saturday, Jan. 26... The schedule will feature six first-time Challenge matchups: Alabama at Baylor, Iowa State at Ole Miss, Kansas State at Texas A&M, Vanderbilt at Oklahoma, Florida at TCU and West Virginia at Tennessee. -- ESPN.com

May 22

South Carolina's leading scorer and rebounder Chris Silva is withdrawing from the NBA draft and returning to the Gamecocks for his senior year. -- AP

From the moment he arrived at Kentucky as head coach in April 2009, John Calipari has been a master of one-and-done-era recruiting. Then, by 2013, Mike Krzyzewski had adopted that same approach wholeheartedly, with the result that Duke and Kentucky have now produced the top two recruiting classes nationally in each of the past five seasons. For 349 other programs, however, recruiting is a far different matter. None of these "other" programs has been able to attain and hold onto the luxurious position of signing multiple one-and-done stars year in and year out. Programs such as Kansas, North Carolina and UCLA have done so at times; but at the end of the day, the duopoly maintained by the Blue Devils and the Wildcats is still standing. -- ESPN.com

May 20

Trae Young believes he's not just the best scorer in the NBA draft this year, he's the best player. Asked Friday whether he felt he was the best scorer in this year's class of potential picks, the Oklahoma guard felt he needed to add a little more to the description. "I think I'm the best overall player in this draft," Young said. "My main focus isn't necessarily to be the best player in this draft. My focus is to be the best player in the NBA. That's what I'm focusing on each and every day." -- ESPN.com

Missouri's Michael Porter Jr., who says he is "100 percent" after rehabbing from back surgery most of the year, also said Thursday he feels he is "the best player in this draft." -- ESPN.com

May 18

The University of Louisville has reached a $4.5 million settlement with former athletic director Tom Jurich, who was fired in the wake of a national federal corruption investigation of college basketball. -- AP

May 17

Center Ikechukwu Obiagu is transferring from Florida State to Seton Hall, he announced Thursday on Twitter. -- ESPN.com

May 15

Villanova will host Michigan in a rematch of the 2018 NCAA tournament final on Nov. 14 as part of the fourth annual Gavitt Tipoff Games. The Gavitt Tipoff Games is an early-season series matching Big East programs against Big Ten schools. The event is named in honor of Big East founder Dave Gavitt. -- AP

May 10

Last week, five-star prospect Joey Baker announced that he was reclassifying to join the 2018 recruiting class and would enroll at Duke in the fall. Baker's decision means Mike Krzyzewski will enter 2018-19 with no fewer than five freshmen ranked in the top 40 of the 2018 ESPN 100. R.J. Barrett, Zion Williamson, Cam Reddish, Tre Jones and Baker will form the nucleus of a Blue Devils roster that has lost its entire starting five from last season. -- ESPN.com



OLDER NEWS

College Basketball News, Rumors and Hot Stories from February, 2018

February 4, 2018

Mike Krzyzewski didn't want to use inexperience or looking past a below-.500 opponent as an excuse for Duke's 81-77 upset loss to St. John's at Madison Square Garden on Saturday. The Duke coach didn't mince words in his criticism. "We didn't play basketball the first 32 minutes worthy of our program," Krzyzewski said. "It was disgusting, really." -- ESPN.com

For one there is the matter of the Blue Devils’ defense, decent in the scheme of things but lacking for a team with title hopes, ranking 69th nationally in efficiency and on Saturday allowing St. John’s to have its best per-possession offensive showing since a Dec. 2 win over Sacred Heart, which currently sits ninth in the 10-team Northeast Conference. The occasional deployment of a 2-3 zone has provided temporary remedy at times this season, but against the Red Storm it did little to stem the tide, and by the time Duke clamped back down in man, it was trading punches while already backed against the ropes. -- SI.com

Ohio State guard Kam Williams has been suspended indefinitely for violating team rules. -- ESPN.com/AP

Georgia sophomore guard Jordan Harris has been suspended indefinitely by the team. -- ESPN.com

As the pile of celebrating bodies grew, Washington's Dominic Green started to get uneasy. He'd never been in the situation of celebrating a game-winning basket like this, let alone where he was the one hitting the shot. "I was really nervous," Green said. "Just because something like that had never happened, so it gave me the butterflies." Green was at the center of Washington's raucous celebration on Saturday night after his 3-pointer at the buzzer gave the Huskies a 78-75 upset of No. 9 Arizona. -- ESPN.com/AP

College Basketball News, Rumors and Hot Stories from January, 2018

January 21, 2018

Zion Williamson, the most-hyped recruit from the class of 2018, committed to Duke, he announced Saturday at his Spartanburg High School. The five-star power forward from South Carolina chose the Blue Devils over Clemson, Kansas, Kentucky, North Carolina and more. -- SI.com

Krzyzewski pulled the proverbial rabbit out of a hat, landing Williamson -- and securing the Nos. 1, 2 and 3 prospects in the 2018 class, something that’s never been done since the ESPN recruiting database started in 2007. Williamson joins a class that already had No. 1 prospect R.J. Barrett and No. 3 Cameron Reddish, as well as No. 1 point guard Tre Jones, the No. 10 overall player in 2018. -- ESPN.com

Oklahoma freshman guard Trae Young scored a career–high 48 points in the Sooners' loss to Oklahoma State on Saturday. Young, who leads the nation in points per game and assists, went 14-39 from the floor, including 8-20 from 3-point range. -- SI.com

Clemson senior forward Donte Grantham will miss the remainder of the season after tearing his ACL during Saturday's game, the team announced. Grantham suffered the injury in the second half of a 67-58 win over Notre Dame. His right knee buckled after he was fouled from behind. -- ESPN.com

January 20, 2018

TCU point guard Jaylen Fisher had surgery Thursday to repair a meniscus tear in his right knee and will miss the rest of the season for the No. 24 Horned Frogs. -- ESPN.com/AP

January 19, 2018

An unimpressive start to the season for much of the Big Ten has made it hard for some of the league's emerging talent to stand out. That might not be the case for much longer. Michigan State's Miles Bridges is one of two players from the Big Ten to make the 25-player midseason Wooden Award watch list, released last week. The Spartans have been prohibitive favorites to win the conference since the preseason, but after a rough week in which they lost two of three games, other teams have made it clear that there are legitimate threats to contend for the title. It's time to give the players who are leading that charge their due. -- ESPN.com



OLDER STORIES

January 2, 2018

Michigan State was passed by Villanova for the No. 1 ranking after Duke and Kansas lost three weeks ago. The Spartans were No. 3 at the time, but voters moved the fourth-ranked Wildcats to the top spot. Look who's No. 1 now. Michigan State (14-1) moved up to No. 1 in the poll released on Monday, receiving 43 of 65 first-place votes following previously top-ranked Villanova's loss to Butler on Saturday. -- ESPN.com/AP

The Lithuanian coach who is set to welcome LiAngelo and LaMelo Ball this week told ESPN that he expects the brothers to "play a lot" once they get on the court. Virginijus Seskus, the head coach of Prienu Vytautas, said that he has watched plenty of footage of the Ball brothers -- on YouTube and also highlights sent by their agent, Harrison Gaines. -- ESPN.com

Maryland forward Ivan Bender will miss the remainder of the season with a knee injury. Bender has a torn meniscus in his right knee, an injury that occurred Friday night in a game against Maryland-Baltimore County. -- ESPN.com

January 1, 2018

I'm writing this in the aftermath of a loss suffered by Villanova at Butler. The Bulldogs beat Jay Wright's No. 1-ranked team Saturday with a remarkable display of outside shooting, and when it was over, LaVall Jordan's men had a 101-93 victory over the previously undefeated Wildcats. The conventions of sportswriting require that I must now tut-tut sternly and say that Villanova's defense has been exposed. I should insist that the Wildcats will be vulnerable until they learn to do a better job of chasing opponents off the 3-point line. Last, I should warn Nova fans that they are in for a nervous time this season until and unless their team proves that it can buckle down on defense. I'm not going to do any of that, however, because I really don't believe any of that. Villanova will be fine. ESPN.com

December, 2017 College Basketball News, Rumors and Hot Stories

December 14, 2017

Charlotte has fired former NBA standout Mark Price after two-plus seasons, the school announced Thursday. Price had a 30-42 mark since taking over the 49ers program, including a 16-20 record in Conference USA play. Charlotte is 3-6 this season and on a four-game losing streak. -- ESPN.com

December 13, 2017

The University of Louisville has filed a counterclaim to former basketball coach Rick Pitino's lawsuit and is seeking monetary damages from vacated games and bonuses. WDRB-TV reports the university alleges that negligence and "wrongful conduct" by Pitino has tarnished the school's reputation. -- ESPN.com/AP

December 12, 2017

LiAngelo and LaMelo Ball have reached an agreement to sign professional basketball deals with Lithuanian club Prienu Vytautas, the team's coach/GM Virginijus Seskus and Ball family agent Harrison Gaines told ESPN's Jeff Goodman... LiAngelo and LaMelo are the younger brothers of Los Angeles Lakers rookie guard Lonzo Ball. LiAngelo withdrew from UCLA after the basketball team suspended him indefinitely following a shoplifting incident on the Bruins' tour of China. LaVar said he would have both LiAngelo and LaMelo bypass college basketball and planned to search out pro jobs overseas. LaMelo was a junior in high school but dropped out. -- ESPN.com

December 4, 2017

The father of UCLA guard LiAngelo Ball says he plans to withdraw his son from school because of concerns related to the freshman's indefinite suspension for his participation in a shoplifting incident during the Bruins' trip to China. The younger Ball, along with freshmen Jalen Hill and Cody Riley, have been barred from all team activities as part of their suspension for shoplifting from three high-end stores last month when UCLA opened its season overseas. LaVar Ball told the Los Angeles Times and ESPN on Monday that he's going to explore other options for LiAngelo because ''I'm not going to let him sit back and not practice.'' -- AP/Yahoo Sports

There were a number of reasons then-No. 11 Cincinnati lost convincingly to No. 21 Xavier on Saturday. For one, the Musketeers are very good, especially when Trevon Bluiett is in All-America form, and they generally played very well. The Bearcats were also in hostile territory in front of a frothing crowd in a bitter rivalry game (more on that in a second), and they could hardly knock down an outside shot or find any complementary offense outside of their four primary scorers, and they got pushed around on the offensive glass. Basketball games are complicated puzzles with a lot going on. It’s rarely ever just one thing. -- SI.com

But it’s also worth noting that Xavier might have just been more ready, not from a coaching or game-study perspective but when it comes to recent experience. Coaches often describe how non-conference schedules prepare them for league play, or league play prepares them for the postseason, and so on. Looking at the teams’ previous opponents through that prism, a disparity emerges. Undefeated Cincinnati’s only remotely notable wins were against Wyoming and Buffalo in the Cayman Islands. Xavier, meanwhile, was coming off a home win against No. 16 Baylor after a neutral-site loss to surging No. 20 Arizona State, which came a week after a never-a-pleasure trip to Wisconsin. In order words, we knew Xavier’s talent and expected success could be measured within the context of similar-caliber competition. For Cincinnati—a talented team nonetheless—the same could not really be said. -- SI.com

OLDER STORIES

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October 27

The NAIA has agreed to move its Division II men's basketball tournament from a private Missouri college because of the school's stance on the national anthem. The Springfield News-Leader reports that the College of the Ozarks asked for the tournament to be moved because the NAIA had refused its request to require players to stand during the national anthem and would not plan a forum to discuss the issue before the tournament began. -- ESPN.com/AP

October 26

George Mason has signed men's basketball coach Dave Paulsen to a one-year contract extension that runs through the 2021-22 season. Athletic director Brad Edwards announced the extension Tuesday. Edwards said that in Paulsen's two years as the coach, he has built a strong program "and a team that's been recognized as one of the most improved on the court." ESPN.com/AP

October 24

Michigan State snuck into the NCAA tournament last season as a No. 9 seed, and, historically, a spot on the No. 9 or 10 line has represented the absolute floor for how "low" (ha) this program can get under Tom Izzo. Improvement would be the safe prediction for 2017-18 even if we didn't know anything else. But what we do know about this particular group of Spartans is so striking that there's a case to be made for them as the No. 1 team in the nation. Miles Bridges is back for his sophomore season, and he'll be joined in the starting lineup by fellow returnees Cassius Winston, Joshua Langford and Nick Ward. That still leaves one spot open on the floor for Jaren Jackson, the No. 9-rated freshman in the ESPN 100. -- ESPN.com

October 23

North Carolina senior point guard Joel Berry II broke a bone in his right hand and will likely miss the start of the regular season... Berry averaged 14.7 points and 3.6 assists last season and was the Final Four's Most Outstanding Player after scoring 22 points in the win over Gonzaga in the national title game. Berry was named a Preseason First Team All-American by ESPN on Monday. -- ESPN.com

October 21

Louisville interim coach David Padgett has promoted R.J. Evans to acting assistant coach to "unofficially round out our staff." The announcement of Evans' promotion Friday comes a day after Padgett introduced Greg Paulus as an assistant coach. Evans worked under Rick Pitino, who was fired earlier this week. Evans was given on-court responsibilities after assistants Kenny Johnson and Jordan Fair were placed on paid administrative leave. -- ESPN.com/AP

October 19

USA Today’s preseason coaches poll is out, and there are familiar faces all around as Duke returns to the No.1 spot for the second straight season. The Blue Devils are followed by Michigan State at No. 2, Kansas and Kentucky at Nos. 3 and 4, and Arizona in fifth. Duke brings back the mercurial Grayson Allen and has surrounded him with a number of elite freshmen recruits, including potential No. 1 NBA draft pick Marvin Bagley, big man Wendell Carter and guards Trevon Duval and Gary Trent Jr. After an early exit in last year’s tournament, the Blue Devils are positioned to bounce back as quickly as the new pieces start to jell. -- SI.com

October 11

Villanova's Jay Wright will receive the John R. Wooden Award Legends of Coaching honor. The annual award is given to college basketball coaches who exemplify the late UCLA legend's standard of coaching success and personal integrity. Wooden's daughter Nan announced the selection on Tuesday. -- ESPN.com/AP

October 9

Hopefully, college basketball fans won’t lose any sleep over this news: ESPN is abandoning its 24-Hour College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon for 2017. There still will be games televised by the company’s various channels on Tuesday, Nov. 14, notably the Champions Classic doubleheader in Chicago matching Michigan State vs. Duke and Kentucky vs. Kansas. But the joy of watching a team like Winthrop playing Manhattan just as the workday begins will be no more. -- Sporting News

October 6

The University of Louisville placed basketball assistant coaches Kenny Johnson and Jordan Fair on paid leave Friday, the school announced, according to the Courier-Journal. It's the latest development for Louisville in the FBI's investigation into a college basketball corruption scheme that has already effectively cost head coach Rick Pitino and athletic director Tom Jurich their jobs. Federals investigators allege that Pitino helped a top-rated prospect take a $100,000 bribe to join the the school, facilitated by Adidas. -- SI.com

October 4

Josh Pastner has signed a one-year contract extension to remain Georgia Tech's coach through the 2022-23 season after exceeding expectations in his debut season. -- ESPN.com/AP

Much older college basketball news stories and features are here.



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