After a slow start where they experimented with an ill-fitting Twin Towers lineup, the Rockets have found themselves over the last few weeks. They are 9-3 in their last 12 games, a streak that coincides with second-year power forward Terrence Jones moving into the starting line-up. Read More. Written by Jonathan Tjarks on Dec 04, 2013
Trevon Bluiett has committed to Xavier, picking the Musketeets over Butler, Memphis and Michigan State.
Bluiett had originally committed to UCLA in September, but decided to reopen the process to find a school closer to home.
“There were a lot of things that attracted me to them,” Bluiett said of Xavier. “(Coach Chris Mack and assistant Travis Steele) were consistent throughout the recruiting process. There were a lot of curveballs in the process, but they always had the same message. When you look at the school, it’s a good program that’s in the Big East now and with their style of play it will fit me well. I think we’ll have enough weapons to make some noise in the tournament.”
Bluiett is ranked No. 45 in the class of 2014 and is one of the best shooting guards.
Tom Izzo is preparing to replace Gary Harris if he declares for the NBA draft after this season.
Izzo has expressed interest in James Blackmon Jr., one of the top shooting guards in the 2014 recruiting class.
"(Coach Tom Izzo) just said that Gary Harris probably will be leaving so I'll have to come in and probably fill that spot right off and I'll get a chance to showcase my skills," Blackmon said in a recent interview.
Izzo expressed his belief last month that Harris would ultimately become a top 10 draft pick.
Michigan State is targeting two top point guards in the 2014 class: Tyler Ulis and Quentin Snider.
Ulis is deciding between the Spartans, Kentucky and Iowa.
Tom Izzo offered a scholarship to Snider on Sunday, according to Snider’s father, Scott.
"(The Spartans) have been on Tyler pretty hard, so if Tyler goes to UK, they'll need a point guard (at Michigan State)," Scott said, adding that his son would likely take an official visit to Michigan State.
Jahlil Okafor and Tyus Jones are widely expected to choose the same school.
Both players have included Baylor, Duke, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan State and Ohio State on their lists.
Okafor and Jones will make official visits together to Baylor on Aug. 30, Kansas on Oct. 18 and Duke on Oct. 25. Okafor will visit Kentucky on Sept. 9 and Arizona on Oct. 11 without Jones. Okafor will also make unofficial visits to Illinois, Michigan State and Ohio State.
Okafor would like to make a decision in November, but his father said that is not set in stone.
Duke is rumored to be the frontrunner, which Okafor's father says his unfortunate.
"It's disappointing. It's taking the fun out of the process for the two boys," Okafor's father, Chukwudi Okafor, said by phone. "That's a shame. Let the kids go through the process. I just want them to enjoy it, not the media, not Twitter, not the coaches, not the AAU coaches. Those kids are highly intelligent. They know what to do. Let it play out, and I think the world is in for something special."
Gary Harris declared himself completely healthy after battling through injuries to both shoulders last season.
Harris dislocated his left shoulder against Boise State on Nov. 20, and later suffered a similar injury to his right shoulder.
“I'm just the type of person that's going to play through regardless,” Harris said during the recent Kevin Durant Skills Academy. "I sat out the first two games (with a sprain), but after that I couldn't sit out anymore. I was going to play even if the shoulder fell off. So it feels good to finally get back to 100% healthy and get back to how I used to be."
The Harris family opted for rehab after seeking information and opinions on the best course of action.
"He wanted to persevere, fight through and do what he needed to do," Gary Harris Sr. said. "Full disclosure, he probably didn't let on how bad it really was. However, based on the information, we felt that rest and intensive physical therapy would be the course of action that we would pursue first, so that's what we decided to do."