Archive for June 2009

NBA Draft: “In oder Aus”

June 21, 2009

In honor of Sasha Baron Cohen’s soon to be released movie Bruno I’ve decided to play a game of his made famous from Da Ali G Show called “in oder aus” (in or the out). The deadline to withdraw from the NBA draft was June 16 and many of the Pac-10’s finest underclassman considered the jump to the pro’s. Lets take a look at who did and didn’t enter the draft and whether they made the right decision or not.

nba-draft

Arizona

-Jordan Hill [In]:  Hill had a monstrous season this year and is looking to cash in. By staying an extra year Hill could have benefited by improving his strength and fundamentals, but with a weak draft class and the season he had the decision whether to go pro was a no brainer. Projection: 4-8. Decision grade: A

-Chase Budinger [In]: Though Budinger failed to achieve his goal from last year in guaranteeing himself as a lottery pick this year, three coach’s in three frustrating years makes it no wonder why Budinger is turning pro and not coming back for his senior year. Projection: 10-20.  Decision grade: B

-Nic Wise [Aus]: With the coaching carousel spinning, Nic Wise was set to choose between playing professionally in Europe vs. coming back to Arizona and starring as the Wildcat’s main man. With Wise choosing wisely to come back, Nic has given himself the opportunity for next year to be playing in the NBA instead of what hoped for this is year in playing overseas. Decision grade: A-

Arizona St.

-James Harden [In]: Even though Harden could have been a lottery pick in last years draft, Harden stayed an extra

ASU's James Harden dribbling by USC's Daniel Hackett (Icon SMI)

ASU's James Harden dribbling past USC's Daniel Hackett (Icon SMI)

year at ASU solidifying himself as a top five pick this year. Harden dominated the Pac-1o and there would have been very little for him to improve upon in the college ranks if he were to stay for another year. Projection: 3-6.  Decision grade: A

California

-Patrick Christopher [Aus]: If Christopher were to enter the draft this year his chances of being drafted  would have been minimal to none. With Patrick returning for his season year, Christopher has given himself an optimal opportunity to showcase all of his talents to get drafted next year along with also giving the Golden Bears an excellent chance to win the Pac-10 . Decision grade: B+

UCLA

-Jrue Holiday [In]: When Holiday arrived at UCLA he was expected to immediately dominate Pac-10 and jump straight into NBA after. Jrue didn’t exactly dominate the Pac-10, but he did still decide to shoot straight to the pro’s. By staying another year, Holiday would have benefited by being the Bruin’s go-to-guy and an extra year’s worth of development. Projection: 10-20. Decision grade: B-

USC

-DeMar DeRozan [In]: DeMar DeRozan holds exceptional ability and has the potential to be a star at the next level. DeRozan could have benefited by coming back to USC and getting another year of development under his wing, but with USC’s coaching fallout it only made sense for DeMar to go pro. Projection: 8-15. Decision grade: A-

-Daniel Hackett [In]: Hackett likely only entered the draft to get away from the current coaching scandal taking place at USC and escape playing for a depleted USC roster. Unfortunately for Hackett, there is an unlikely chance he will be drafted and the depleted roster could have given him a great opportunity to play an expanded enough role to be selected in next year’s draft. Projection: not drafted. Decision grade: C

-Taj Gibson [In]: Though the last three years Gibson has steadily improved his game with the Trojans, it has come playing as the right hand man behind the likes of stars Nick Young, OJ Mayo, and DeMar DeRozen. Still, with the mishap going on at USC it is no wonder why Taj is turning pro and entering the draft. Projection: late 1st round-early 2nd round. Decision grade: B

-ARB

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The Fall of Troy

June 13, 2009

With Tim Floyd resigning as head basketball coach at USC last week, the program looks to be in shambles- for a long time.  Just a few months ago Tim Floyd turned down two of the countries most prestigious coaching vacancies from Arizona and Memphis to return to USC and to what he thought was a top-1o recruiting class, the limelights of LA, and

Tim Floyd (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

Tim Floyd (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

a program on the rise.  But, with the bolting of three of the teams top four leading scorers to play professional ball (Daniel Hackett, Taj Gibson, Demar Derozen)  and a devastating accusation from the NCAA regarding an illegal payment to a handler during the recruitment of former USC star OJ Mayo,  Tim Floyd has resigned bringing a very gloomy fate to the  future  of USC basketball.

After two failed stints in the NBA, Floyd was brought to USC to rebuild a program that had only had marginal success.  In just four years, Tim Floyd shot USC into a perennial threat in the Pac-1o leading the Trojans to an unprecedented three NCAA tournament appearances. During this time, word had began to circulate questioning the rise of USC leading many to accuse Floyd of cheating and questionable recruiting tactics.  With Floyd’s resignation last week; bringing most of the speculated word to truth, Floyd is now left without a job and, more importantly for LA and the Pac-10, USC without a coach.

Unfortunately for USC, the fallout will have many consequences for the present and even more for the future. Though the Trojans are already losing three of their four leading scorers and have a prized recruiting class lost; a very weak Pac-1o should save USC from absolute embarrassment and the return of the likes of leading scorer Dwight Lewis and UNC transfer Alex Stepheson will have the Trojans winning at least a couple games. With this season most definitely lost, the by far most important task for USC and Athletic Director Mike Garrett is to find a coach who will be able to lead the program through the frustration of now and the tough times that will endure. Names have already being thrown around, but Garrett must only find a coach who will work with integrity, enthusiasm,  patience. Here is a list of coach’s, by order of preference, that i believe Garrett should go after:

1.  Billy Gillispie

Why:  Though Gillispie didn’t have as much success as he would have wanted in Lexington, the USC coaching job would would give him a chance to start anew and showcase his true merits as a coach. USC would provide all the necessary tools for him to attract attention and shine along with the low-stress work environment and the expectations of a low mid-major school.

Billy Gillispie (AP Photo/Joe Raymond)

Billy Gillispie (AP Photo/Joe Raymond)

2. Craig Robinson

Why: Has a long-struggling Oregon St. program on the rise and has all the integrity and talent that Garrett could ever want. USC’s prime-time stage would be an ideal opportunity for Robinson to showcase his talents as a coach, but does Robinson really want to leave OSU just a few months before the season begins to rebuild another program all over again?

3 . Steve Lavin

Why: Lavin has strong recruiting ties and experience from his days with UCLA.  Lavin is young and has the optimism and enthusiasm an ailing program like USC needs, still does USC want to risk the life of its program with someone who has already failed once in the Pac-10?

Other possible candidates:

– Bobby Knight: The name has been thrown around by the likes of ESPN’s Andy Katz but it doesn’t seem realistic and would not be the long term solution that Garrett wants.

– Reggie Theus: Would be great as the interim coach for this year; but unfortunately Theus likely only wants the full time gig and i doubt Garrett has him high on his list.

-ARB

Welcome!

June 11, 2009

Hello everybody! My name is a Ashley Brio and i am a high school student living in Arizona with a huge interest in  all things Pac-10 basketball. Born and raised  in the west coast, I have been watching and following  Pac-10 basketball since my wee years;  and, as i have become older, my fondness for Pac-10 basketball has exploded to point where  much of my time and thinking has gone to the following of the league and its’ proceedings.  That is why i am starting this blog- I wish to express my thoughts, predictions, and analysis on Pac-10 basketball and everything taking place around it. Thank you and please do feel free to provide your thoughts and idea’s on anything i write.

-ARB