Thursday, October 23, 2008

Lute Olson Leaving Arizona. Gaddy To Follow?

By Bruin Basketball Report

The Silver Fox Leaving Arizona...Again.

Lute Olson is stepping down as head coach of the Wildcats.

“This was not a decision that was made lightly,” Olson said in a news release. “I’ve had a wonderful run at the University of Arizona. I leave with a great sense of pride in what we have accomplished here.”

Olson, 74 years-old, compiled a career record of 780-280. He coached his Wildcats to the Final Four in 1988, 1994, 1997 and 2001, winning the 1997 NCAA championship.

Associate head coach Mike Dunlap will reportedly be named interim head coach for the rest of this season.

Olson took a leave of absence last year, citing personnel reasons. At the time the team was taken over by Kevin O'Neill, then associate head coach, who was introduced subsequent to Olson's leave as the choice as his eventual successor. However due to an apparent falling out between the two, O'Neill left the program over the summer.

Since announcing his return to the Wildcat head coaching job, Olson had been successful in convincing star Chase Budinger to returning for his junior season. On the recruiting end, Bellarmine Prep star guard Abdul Gaddy chose to re-commit to Arizona, citing he had always wanted to play for Coach Olson.

With the departure of Olson before the November national letter of intent signing period, Gaddy now has the opportunity to weigh his collegiate options once again.

Prior to verbally committing to Arizona over the summer, Gaddy had also been considering UCLA, Memphis, and Washington.

UCLA already has a star-studded 2009 class of forwards Reeves Nelson, Brendan Lane, Tyler Honeycutt, and center Anthony Stover, and the addition of the five-star Gaddy would help complete the class.

The Bruins are still pursuing guard Michael Snaer, however, his recruitment has taken some time, and perhaps Gaddy, a player who can play both the point and shooting guard positions may be a better fit for the Bruins in their future plans.

Gaddy and his family told the Tucscon Citizen newspaper this afternoon that they are considering all options at this point.

(photo credit: Seattle PI)

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Bruin Recruiting: Prep News Roundup (10/20)

By Bruin Basketball Report

Prep News Roundup is published every Monday.


Reeves Nelson suffered a torn meniscus in his left knee and will have surgery Friday at the UCLA Medical Center. He'll follow with his official visit to UCLA, the college to which he has verbally committed to play basketball. If the rehabilitation goes according to schedule, Nelson isn't expected to miss much of his final high school basketball season. When Nelson received the diagnosis, he didn't want to stop playing football. "At first, I was fully intending to play football after therapy," Nelson said. "But then we got the call (Tuesday), the doctor said surgery. It was out of my hands."
The meniscus is a piece of cartilage in the knee that serves as its shock absorber. It distributes weight and provides stability to the joint.
"From what I've been told, it's a pretty innocuous injury, but it's got to be taken care of," said his father, Brian Nelson. "They're saying it will be four-to-eight weeks of rehabilitation, then Reeves will be back to 100 percent. Modesto Bee 10/16

A competitive first half gave way to a lopsided affair after the break as the Rocklin High School boys’ water polo team outscored Roseville 8-2 in the second half in a 17-6 win on Thursday night in the Sierra Foothill League postseason water polo tournament at the Roseville Aquatic Center. The Thunder jumped out to a quick lead just 14 seconds in when Brendan Lane powered a shot past the goalie into the Roseville netting. Rocklin Press Tribune 10/17


On Tuesday, Mountain State Academy coach Rob Fulford confirmed reports that power forward Deniz Kilicli has decided to play for the Mountaineers beginning in the fall of 2009. Kilicli, 6-foot-9, 250 pounds, is originally from Istanbul, Turkey. Fulford said the forward's father was looking for American academic and athletic opportunities for his son, which resulted in the move to Beckley. "He has committed to West Virginia," Fulford said. "He committed over the weekend, but we wanted to make a couple courtesy calls to coaches before we released it.' WV Charleston Gazette 10/14

Two bigger bodies who will not be present are Keith 'Tiny' Gallon and Renardo Sidney. Both seniors have been rumored to be considering UNLV in recent weeks despite the fact that Kruger & Co. have no more scholarships to hand out for next season. The front-runner for Gallon, a Houston native who plays at Oak Hill Academy in Mouth of Wilson, Va., is Oklahoma. The Sooners drew a commitment from Gallon's good pal and Houston Hoops teammate Tommy Mason-Griffin late in the summer. As for Sidney, Kruger has never spoken with the Fairfax (Calif.) High big man, regarded as one of the best in this year's senior crop. Las Vegas Sun 10/17

Kansas welcomed its new flock to the Phog by paying homage to the past. KU's Late Night in the Phog pep rally focused on tradition, namely the program's past national championships and current contingent in the NBA. Friday night also offered the current Jayhawks, including seven newcomers, a chance to strut their stuff — on the dance floor and the basketball court. Jayhawk fans welcomed a group of 2009 men's basketball recruits to Allen Fieldhouse with a resounding cheer. Guards Xavier Henry (Oklahoma City, Okla.), Dominic Cheek (Jersey City, N.J.), Michael Snaer (Moreno Valley, Calif.) and Elijah Johnson (Las Vegas, Nev.) took in the rally from behind the bench. Self said including those making unofficial visits, nearly 10 prospects attended. Topeka Capital Journal 10/18

The magic of “Late Night at the Phog” paid off quickly for the Kansas Jayhawks on Saturday as KU received an oral commitment from Las Vegas point guard Elijah Johnson, according to a source. Johnson, a four-star recruit and the No. 27 overall player according to, chose the Jayhawks after seeing the 2008 national championship banner raised to the rafters of Allen Fieldhouse on Friday night. Johnson picked KU over Big 12 rivals Oklahoma and Texas. The 6-foot-2, 183 pound Johnson became the second member of KU’s 2009 class, joining five-star power forward Thomas Robinson. The Jayhawks will now await the decisions of three five-star shooting guards who were in attendance for “Late Night” – Xavier Henry of Oklahoma City, Michael Snaer of Moreno Valley, Calif., and Dominic Cheek of Jersey City, N.J. KU only has one scholarship remaining for this class.
Wichita Eagle

“I think I play like Kevin Garnett-slash…what’s his name, played for the Lakers a long time ago? Magic. I love to run, and I think I play like him a little, too,” Renardo Sidney says, simultaneously explaining his game and showing his age. “I play all five positions. Next level, I’ll probably be a 4, 3 or 2, but my Pops plays me at the 1 or the 2. If I have a lil’ dude on me, I go to the block; if I have a big dude, I go outside. I just love to mismatch on people. Slam Online 10/19

A highly recruited high school hoops star from Brooklyn was arrested earlier this month for sexually abusing a 17-year-old girl inside the school, police said. Lance Stephenson, a 6-foot-5, 200-pound guard from Abraham Lincoln High School, the former school of NBA players Stephon Marbury and Sebastian Telfair, has been charged with a Class B misdemeanor. Daily News 10/19

(photo credit: Modesto Bee)