The following is a look at this week’s most interesting news and notes from the world of college basketball. Have any of your favorite teams moved up in the eyes of the college basketball odds makers?
The start of another college basketball season is still months away, but it remains important to pay close attention to the news wire as sometimes even the smallest stories can have a big impact on a team’s futures odds.
Indiana loses top recruit for this season
The Indiana Hoosiers chances to win a national championship took a bit of a hit this past week when it was announced that prized recruit Ron Patterson will not attended the school this fall after he failed to meet the necessary academic requirements. Patterson was ranked the No.25th shooting guard in this year’s class after averaging 18.5 points, six rebounds, and four assists in his senior season at Broad Ripple High School.
Bovada has opened the Hoosiers as second-favorites at 8/1 to win this year’s title with only Kentucky having better odds. Fortunately for Indiana fans, the team remains loaded with talent with nine players back from last year’s 27-9 squad. It has also added some solid recruits in Yogi Ferrell, Jeremy Hollowell, and Hanner Mosquera-Perea, which are all ranked in ESPN’s top 100 players in the country.
Northwestern center ruled eligible for this season
The Northwestern Wildcats’ quest to break a string of four-straight NIT appearances with a bid to this upcoming season’s NCAA Tournament received a major boost this past Thursday. Center Chier Ajou has been ruled academically eligible to play this season after attending Culver Academies in Indiana for two years and spending last year at St. Thomas Moore in Connecticut.
At 7-foot-2, Ajou will be the tallest player ever to suit up for the Wildcats, and hopefully their ticket to bigger and better things in the Big Ten this year. As a senior, he averaged 14 points and 2.6 blocks per game. Northwestern will have four starters back from last season’s 19-10 squad along with four freshman, two redshirt freshman, and two transfers.
The Big East vows to remain a viable power
The embattled Big East Conference, which will lose West Virginia to the Big 12 this season and Syracuse and Pittsburgh to the ACC in 2013, remains committed to being one of the power conference in men’s college basketball. New Big East Commissioner Mike Aresco held his first press conference last Wednesday and was extremely optimistic that he could help create an environment that makes staying in the conference attractive to its current membership. He stated that “I would have not taken this job if I did not feel that this was a cohesive conference that was committed to each other”.
There are still some major challenges that lie ahead for the Big East, most notably the upcoming negotiations for an all-important new television contract that could ultimately decide its future.
Seton Hall recruit in trouble with the law
Aquille Carr, who previously committed to Seton Hall for the start of the 2013/2014 season, was arrested this past Friday morning in his hometown of Baltimore on assault charges. The 5-foot-7 point guard is ranked 95th in ESPN’s top 100 players and 25th at his position. He is expected to finish is high school career in Baltimore after transferring to St. Patrick’s High School in Elizabeth, New Jersey this past spring. His future with the Pirates remains up in the air at this time.