NCAA WiretapDecember 2011 NCAA Wiretap

Irving Pushing Pace After Conversation With Coach K

Dec 31, 2011 2:14 PM

Kyrie Irving said he has spoken to Duke's Mike Krzyzewski three times since the season began.

"He didn't like the pace I was playing at in the first game," Irving said in reference to his NBA opener on Monday, a night he shot 2-of-12 from the field in a loss to Toronto.

"He said I needed to play a little bit quicker, which I agree with. He offered as much advice as he could."

Irving certainly played a quicker game Wednesday in Detroit, where he scored 14 points and added seven assists.

"We both know he needs to play faster," Cavaliers coach Byron Scott said. "[Irving] knows it. We want to be that type of team. Hearing it from me and also hearing it from a great coach like Mike, who coached him for the last year and knows him pretty well, I think kind of reinforces the way we want him to play. I don't have a problem with that."

Tom Reed/Cleveland Plain Dealer

Tags: Kyrie Irving, Cleveland Cavaliers, Duke Blue Devils, Atlantic Coast Conference, NCAA, NBA

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Calipari Trusts Kidd-Gilchrist To Play Through Foul Trouble

Dec 30, 2011 3:37 PM

Kentucky freshman Michael Kidd-Gilchrist has been saddled with two early fouls in the past three games, but that hasn’t stopped coach John Calipari from putting him back on the floor.

"Normally when a guy gets two fouls, I will not play him the rest of the half," Calipari said. "The problem with this team is you need his toughness so bad, that I ended up shoving him back in there."

Calipari can’t afford to protect Kidd-Gilchrist for later in the game.

"I'm just getting better and better on the court, so he needs me out there," Kidd-Gilchrist said. "I think that's the reason he puts me back in."

UKAthletics.com

Tags: Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Kentucky Wildcats, Southeastern Conference, NCAA, NBA, NBA NBA Draft, NBA Draft General

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Khem Birch In No Hurry To Enter Draft, Hopes To Expand Skill Set

Dec 29, 2011 3:15 PM

Khem Birch, who has yet to decide where he will transfer after leaving Pittsburgh, said he's in no rush to turn pro.

"I'm not in a rush to get to the NBA," Birch said. "I know I have a lot of work to do."

Birch indicated that he’d like to play in an up-tempo system where he can develop his power forward skills.

"I want to play more four," Birch said. "That's one of the main reasons I went to Pittsburgh in the first place. I know I don't have the four-man skills yet, but I want to develop them."

CBSSports.com

Tags: Khem Birch, Pittsburgh Panthers, American Athletic Conference, NCAA, NBA, NBA NBA Draft, NBA Draft General

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Scouts Question Fab Melo's Consistency

Dec 29, 2011 3:13 PM

NBA scouts want to see Syracuse center Fab Melo be more consistent before they consider him pro ready.

“[The] biggest issue with him is can he consistently look like a first round pick night in and night out for them,” one NBA scout said.

“Until and unless he can do that he will be considered as simply a player who came in with great hype but hasn’t lived up to it.”

Melo seems well aware of the criticisms against him and promises that there will be more nights like Wednesday.

“No, there will be more for sure,” he said. “I am going to work a lot and my game is going to get better.”

Adam Zagoria/ZagsBlog.com

Tags: Fab Melo, Syracuse Orange, American Athletic Conference, NCAA, NBA, NBA NBA Draft, NBA Draft General

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St. John's Harkless Breaks Big East Record Held By Iverson, Murphy

Dec 28, 2011 7:07 PM

Moe Harkless' 32 points broke a record shared by Troy Murphy and Allen Iverson for most points scored by a freshman in his first Big East conference game.

Harkless also had 13 rebounds in St. John's 91-67 win over Providence.

He is one of only five major conference freshmen with a 30-10 game in the past five seasons, a list that also includes Jared Sullinger, Michael Beasley, Bill Walker and J.J. Hickson.

Jeremy Lunblad/ESPN

Tags: Maurice Harkless, St. John's Red Storm, NCAA

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Cody Zeller Plans To Unveil Shooting Range

Dec 28, 2011 1:27 PM

Cody Zeller plans to be ready if Big Ten opponents make his job tough near the basket.

"I can shoot a little bit on the outside," Indiana's 6-11 freshman forward said Tuesday. "We're talking about moving a little more to the perimeter."

Zeller and his teammates are still improving.

"As he gets more comfortable, he'll keep expanding his game," Hoosiers coach Tom Crean said. "I'm comfortable with him on the perimeter creating for others. His ability to create already has been seen from the post.

"Our best players can get better. Cody epitomizes that."

Marlen Garcia/USA TODAY

Tags: Cody Zeller, Indiana Hoosiers, Big Ten Conference, NCAA, NBA, NBA NBA Draft, NBA Draft General

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Kidd-Gilchrist Compares Himself To Tebow

Dec 28, 2011 1:24 PM

Kentucky freshman Michael Kidd-Gilchrist likened his ability to win games to that of Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow.

"I'm like a Tim Tebow," Kidd-Gilchrist said. "I just want to win the games, and whatever it takes, I'm going to do it."

Kidd-Gilchrist is averaging 13.1 points, 6.2 rebounds and two assists per game, and has shown a willingness to lead even more veteran teammates.

"I'm ready to lead," Kidd-Gilchrist said. "I'm a freshman, but so what? I'm just ready to lead and win. I've always been that way."

CatsIllustrated.com

Tags: Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Kentucky Wildcats, Southeastern Conference, NCAA, NBA, NBA NBA Draft, NBA Draft General

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Self Wants Jayhawks To Play With More 'Personality'

Dec 27, 2011 4:21 PM

Kansas Jayhawks coach Bill Self said he’s seeking improvement in a lot of areas, including setting screens and running offense to score, as well as defending for the entire shot clock.

“If I was going to pick something I’d want to happen more than anything else ... we don’t play with a personality,” Self said. “We do not play with the personality where it shines through, and there’s energy exuding all personnel out there on the court.

“I don’t feel that yet. Certainly that’s something we’ve always done a great job in. It doesn’t have anything to do with trying hard, nothing like that. It has more to do with understanding: ‘OK, this is what we need, and if we do this, we’ll become better defenders; we’ll do this; we’ll do that.’”

Gary Bedore/Lawrence Journal World

Tags: Kansas Jayhawks, Big 12 Conference, NCAA, NCAA Injury

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Pitino Intends To Retire After Contract Expires In 2017

Dec 27, 2011 3:30 PM

Rick Pitino said Tuesday that he won't coach past the 2016-2017 season when his current contract ends at Louisville.

"When you're 59, you're realistic that you don't have a whole lot of years left," Pitino said at a news conference before the No. 4 Cardinals play Georgetown on Wednesday. "My contract's going to run out in 2017. I'm not coaching any more after that."

The former Providence and Kentucky coach has guided the Cardinals to a 12-0 record so far this season.

Associated Press

Tags: Louisville Cardinals, Southeastern Conference, NCAA

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Connecticut Holds 20-9 Record Without Calhoun On Bench

Dec 27, 2011 9:58 AM

Connecticut is 20-9 in games where Jim Calhoun has been unavailable to coach.

Calhoun will be suspended for the Huskies' first three games of Big East play.

Hartford Courant

Tags: Connecticut Huskies, NCAA, NCAA B-Ball IQ

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Summer Hoops Figure Mac Irvin Passes Away

CBS Sports

Jarnell Stokes Commits To Tennessee
Jarnell Stokes, a five-star power forward from Memphis, announced that he would play for Cuonzo Martin at Tennessee.

Chattanooga Times Free Press

Muhammad Considering Kentucky, Duke, UCLA, Arizona, Kansas, UNLV
No. 1 prospect Shabazz Muhammad is no longer considering USC or Texas A&M.

ZagsBlog.com

Bradley Beal Adjusting To Speed Of College Game
Bradley Beal is projected as a lottery pick in the draft.

Gainesville Sun

Pittsburgh Leads Nation In Rebounding Differential
Jamie Dixon sets rebounding goals for his team before each game.

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Drummond Paying His Own Connecticut Tuition Via Loan
Andre Drummond took out a loan to pay for his Connecticut tuition this season.

ESPN

Noel Could Reclassify For Class Of 2012
Syracuse, Providence, Duke, Florida, Kentucky, Louisville, Georgetown and Connecticut are considered the leaders for Nerlens Noel.

ESPN

Nerlens Noel: Blocking Shots All About Timing
Nerlens Noel is averaging 7.5 blocks per game to go with 12.0 points and 10.0 rebounds for Tilton.

ESPN

Drummond Gives Up Scholarship, Playing As Walk-On
Potential No. 1 overall pick Andre Drummond is playing as a walk-on for Connecticut.

Gavin Keefe/New London Day

Kidd-Gilchrist Organizing 'Breakfast Club' Workouts At Kentucky
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist has evolved into a leader for the Wildcats.

Courier Journal

Brannen Greene Commits To Kansas
Brannen Greene is one of the top small forward in the class of 2013.

Gary Bedore/Lawrence Journal World

Jarnell Stokes To Announce College Decision On Thursday
Memphis, Arkansas, Connecticut, Florida, Kentucky and Tennessee are the expected finalists for Jarnell Stokes.

Memphis Commercial Appeal

Rhode Island's Jamal Wilson Enjoying Increased Role In Senior Season
Jamal Wilson's usage has jumped from 18.0% to 26.5%.

RealGM Staff Report

Harrison Barnes Unconcerned About Scoring Slump
Harrison Barnes scored just nine points in each of the last two games.

Fayetteville Observer

Sean McGonagill Carrying Bigger Load For Brown As Sophomore
Sean McGonagill has either scored or assisted on 46.1% of Brown's field goals this season, up from 37.5% as a freshman.

RealGM Staff Report

Replacing Marshon Brooks, 87 Percent Of Providence's Points Come From Four Scorers
Vincent Council, Bryce Cotton, Gerard Coleman and LaDontae Henton are leading Providence in scoring.

RealGM Staff Report

Terrence Jones Questionable After Dislocating Finger
Kentucky’s Terrence Jones suffered a dislocated finger in win over Chattanooga.

Associated Press

McAdoo Struggling To Find Niche With Tar Heels
Highly touted freshman James Michael McAdoo has not been a difference-maker for the Tar Heels.

Herald-Sun

Weber: Meyers Leonard Focusing Too Much On NBA Future
Illinois coach Bruce Weber questioned Meyers Leonard’s maturity.

Chicago Tribune

Naismith Hall Of Fame Announces Bob Cousy Award Candidates
The Bob Cousy award recognizes college basketball's top point guard.

USA Today