Kentucky loyalists have seen both ends of the recruiting rating spectrum the last couple of years. Will UK's acclaimed freshman class in 2013-14 flourish or flop?
In 1965-66, the best team in the country might have been UCLA's freshman squad. The Bruins' frosh, led by 7-1 Lew Alcindor's 31 points and 21 rebounds, defeated the two-time NCAA champion UCLA varsity, 75-60. The yearlings compiled a 21-0 record, outscoring their opponents 113.2 points per game to 56.6. Starters for what is considered by some as the best freshman team in NCAA history included Alcindor (33.1 ppg and 21.5 rpg), forwards Lynn Shackelford (20.9 ppg and 9.3 rpg) and Kent Taylor (7.2 ppg) and guards Lucius Allen (22.4 ppg and 7.8 rpg) and Kenny Heitz (14.3 ppg).
Freshmen became eligible for varsity competition seven years later, but there are no guarantees despite a recruit's regal high school resume. In fact, UCLA had a couple of the most disappointing classes in memory in the previous 10 years. Michigan saw both ends of the spectrum with a couple of its freshman recruiting crops in the 1990s that were highly acclaimed. One lived up to expectations while the other went from feast to famine.
Despite failing to capture a Big Ten Conference championship, the "Fab Five" in the first half of the decade probably will stand the test of time and earn recognition among the best classes in college basketball history. On the other hand, guard Louis Bullock was all that was left at the conclusion of the Wolverines' promising 1995-96 freshman class that included Tractor Traylor (left early to become an NBA lottery pick) and Albert White (transferred to Missouri where he was the Tigers' leading scorer in 1998-99 with 16.3 ppg). Minus Traylor and White, Michigan posted an anemic 12-19 record in 1998-99 and finished in a tie for ninth place in the Big Ten (5-11).
In the aftermath of Michigan's recruiting hauls, Duke had an amazing series of regal freshman classes. The Blue Devils' 1997-98 freshman crop (William Avery, Shane Battier, Elton Brand and Chris Burgess) dominated the ACC and was well on its way toward challenging Indiana's superb group in the mid-1970s as the premier class of all time until Avery and Brand left school early for the NBA and Burgess transferred to Utah. The splendid original class was eventually regarded as superior to Michigan's "Fab Five" but with only two years intact won't boast the extended excellence to supplant Indiana's brilliant crew that included Quinn Buckner, Scott May and Bobby Wilkerson.
In 1999-2000, Duke's stunning freshmen included Carlos Boozer, Mike Dunleavy Jr. and Jason Williams. In 2002-03, the Devils' frosh class included guards Sean Dockery and J.J. Redick plus centers Shavlik Randolph and Shelden Williams. All of these groups were Final Four-bound.
As a means of comparison, the Blue Devils' outstanding class comprised of Mark Alarie, Jay Bilas, Johnny Dawkins and David Henderson embarked with an 11-17 mark in 1982-83 before concluding their collegiate careers with an NCAA single-season standard for victories (37-3 in 1985-86).
Ranking recruiting classes regarding their long-term impact on college basketball is risky business. For instance, does Michigan's Fab Five deserve more acclaim than Butler's mid-major level class that also reached back-to-back NCAA championship games? Where does Kentucky's terrific title trio in 2011-12 deserve to be ranked insofar as it was around only one year? And what does the future hold for the elite recruiting classes assembled this season by Kentucky, Arizona and UCLA? Next year's UK crop is already being labeled as perhaps the greatest in collegiate history but it will do well to simply be better than four previous Wildcats classes (1978, 1983, 2013 and 2015). Last year's flop should give Big Blue Nation some reason to refrain from thinking they can promptly go from NIT first-round loss to Robert Morris to a Final Four.
It is a simplistic copout to accept the instant visibility of icon programs and automatically cite them among the most influential in college history. Classes from Alcorn State, Butler, East Tennessee State, San Francisco, Southern Mississippi and Wichita State are mentioned in this appraisal. In an era of "one 'n done" freshmen, extended impact becomes an even more vital factor in separating the premier recruiting classes.
There is little doubt that Kentucky's 2012 title team frosh class would have quickly moved up the pecking order if they had chosen to return. It's unlikely the NCAA will tamper with a nation's fascination with freshmen by making them ineligible. Following is CollegeHoopedia.com's view, factoring in length of tenure (undergraduates declaring for the NBA draft), of the premier recruiting crops (excluding junior college signees) since the introduction of freshman eligibility in 1972-73:
1. Indiana (class of '76)
Recruiting Class: Tom Abernethy, Quinn Buckner, Jim Crews, Scott May, Bobby Wilkerson.
Achievements: Last NCAA champion to go undefeated compiled a 63-1 record in last two seasons this class was intact, climaxing a run of four Big Ten titles. Reached 1973 Final Four with freshmen Buckner and Crews as starting guards under coach Bob Knight (May was ineligible as a freshman for academic reasons). Posted an amazing 59-5 conference mark while capturing four consecutive Big Ten titles. Abernethy, Buckner, May and Wilkerson all played at least five seasons in the NBA while Crews went on to coach Evansville and Army for more than 20 seasons
2. Duke (class of '01)
Recruiting Class: William Avery, Shane Battier, Elton Brand, Chris Burgess (transfer/Utah).
Achievements: Won 31 of 32 ACC games in two seasons together before Avery and Brand left early for the NBA draft. NCAA playoff runner-up in 1999 under coach Mike Krzyzewski
3. Georgetown (class of '85)
Recruiting Class: Ralph Dalton, Patrick Ewing, Anthony Jones (transfer/UNLV), Bill Martin.
Achievements: Won NCAA title in 1984, runner-up in 1985 and reached Final Four in 1982. Went 30-7, 22-10, 34-3 and 35-3 under coach John Thompson. The Hoyas' worst Big East record in that span was 11-5 in 1982-83 although their only conference crown was in 1984. Ewing was the only one of the group to play more than three season in the NBA.
4. Florida (class of '08)
Recruiting Class: Corey Brewer, Taurean Green, Al Horford, Joakim Noah.
Achievements: Brewer, Horford and Noah were top nine NBA draft choices as undergraduates after capturing back-to-back NCAA crowns in 2006 and 2007.
5. North Carolina (class of '06)
Recruiting Class: Raymond Felton, Rashad McCants, Sean May, David Noel, Bryon Sanders.
Achievements: Felton, McCants and May earned All-ACC honors in their final seasons as juniors when they captured the NCAA crown before becoming top 14 NBA draft choices.
6. Kansas (class of '03)
Recruiting Class: Nick Collison, Drew Gooden, Kirk Hinrich.
Achievements: Collison, Gooden and Hinrich each became an NBA lottery pick. After Gooden left early for the NBA draft, Collison and Hinrich were All-Americans in 2003 when the Jayhawks finished NCAA Tournament runner-up under coach Roy Williams. KU went unbeaten in the Big 12 Conference in 2002.
7. Duke (class of '03)
Recruiting Class: Carlos Boozer, Mike Dunleavy Jr., Jason Williams.
Achievements: Might have been the school's best if any of them had exercised all of their eligibility similar to teammate Shane Battier. Reached NCAA playoff final in 1999 and 2001 under coach Mike Krzyzewski.
8. Michigan (class of '95)
Recruiting Class: Juwan Howard, Ray Jackson, Jimmy King, Jalen Rose, Chris Webber.
Achievements: NCAA Tournament runner-up in 1992 (25-9) and 1993 (31-5) as freshman and sophomore starters. Howard, Rose and Webber became NBA first-round draft choices as undergraduates and each played more than 12 years in the league. Principal drawback is that none of the "Fab Five" was a member of a Big Ten Conference title team under coach Steve Fisher.
9. North Carolina (class of '10)
Recruiting Class: Wayne Ellington, Ty Lawson, Alec Stephenson (transfer/Southern California), Deon Thompson, Brandan Wright.
Achievements: Wright was a "one 'n done" recruit, but core of group cruised to 2009 NCAA crown by winning their playoff games by an average of 20.2 points.
10. Notre Dame (class of '81)
Recruiting Class: Tracy Jackson, Gilbert Salinas, Kelly Tripucka, Stan Wilcox, Orlando Woolridge.
Achievements: Final Four participant in 1978 and Midwest Regional runner-up in '79. Irish went 23-8, 24-6, 22-6 and 23-6 under coach Digger Phelps. Jackson, Tripucka and Woolridge were its top three scorers each of their last three seasons. Tripucka (26.5 ppg/15.3) and Woolridge (25.1/10.6) had long NBA careers where they flourished as scorers, posting a pro career-high scoring average significantly higher than their college career mark.
11. Louisville (class of '82)
Recruiting Class: Wiley Brown, Jerry Eaves, Scooter McCray, Derek Smith, Pancho Wright.
Achievements: Won NCAA title in 1980 with Brown, Eaves and Smith starting while McCray was sidelined with a knee injury. Reached the 1982 Final Four under coach Denny Crum. Went 24-8, 33-3, 21-9 and 23-10 with Metro Conference crowns the first three years.
12. Kentucky (class of '15)
Recruiting Class: Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Marquis Teague, Kyle Wiltjer.
Achievements: Undefeated SEC worksheet before capturing an NCAA title in their lone season together. Outside marksman Wiltjer was the only one not to declare for the NBA draft after their 38-2 freshman campaign under coach John Calipari.
13. North Carolina (class of '97)
Recruiting Class: Guy McInnis, Jerry Stackhouse, Rasheed Wallace, Serge Zwikker.
Achievements: Zwikker was the only Tar Heels representative for each of their three 28-win campaigns in this four-year span under coach Dean Smith.
14. Kentucky (class of '83)
Recruiting Class: Sam Bowie, Derrick Hord, Charles Hunt, Dirk Minniefield.
Achievements: Oft-injured Bowie played five years, reaching Final Four in 1984. Original class had respective records of 29-6, 22-6, 22-8 and 23-8, but never advanced beyond second game of NCAA playoffs. Captured three SEC championships in that span under coach Joe B. Hall.
15. UCLA (class of '77)
Recruiting Class: Marques Johnson, Wilbert Olinde, Gavin Smith (transfer/Hawaii), Jim Spillane, Richard Washington.
Achievements: Won [John Wooden's](coaches/john-wooden) final NCAA title in 1975. Washington left for the NBA a year early. Bruins went 26-4, 28-3, 28-4 and 25-4 with four Pacific-8 Conference crowns. Reached Final Four in '76 under coach Gene Bartow.
16. Ohio State (class of '10)
Recruiting Class: Mike Conley Jr., Daequan Cook, David Lighty, Greg Oden.
Achievements: Known as the "Thad Five" (when adding juco recruit Othello Hunter), the Buckeyes compiled a 35-4 as NCAA Tournament runner-up in 2007. Oden and Conley were top four NBA draft choices following freshman campaign.
17. North Carolina (class of '77)
Recruiting Class: Bruce Buckley, Walter Davis, John Kuester, Tom LaGarde.
Achievements: Lost 1977 NCAA playoff final (28-5 record) after posting similar marks (composite of 70-18) the previous three years. Captured ACC regular-season championships their last two seasons under coach Dean Smith.
18. North Carolina (class of '94)
Recruiting Class: Eric Montross, Derrick Phelps, Brian Reese, Clifford Rozier (transfer/Louisville), Pat Sullivan.
Achievements: Won NCAA title in 1993 after reaching 1991 Final Four as freshmen. Compiled records of 29-6, 23-10, 34-4 and 28-7 under coach Dean Smith. Only ACC regular-season championship was in 1993.
19. Illinois (class of '06)
Recruiting Class: James Augustine, Dee Brown, Deron Williams, Kyle Wilson (transfer/Wichita State).
Achievements: Bill Self's recruits became NCAA Tournament runner-up in 2005 under coach Bruce Weber.
20. Kentucky (class of '13)
Recruiting Class: Eric Bledsoe, DeMarcus Cousins, Daniel Orton, John Wall.
Achievements: Regional runner-up after winning SEC regular-season and league tournament titles in 2010 in their lone season together. All four recruits became NBA first-round draft choices.
21. Michigan State (class of '81)
Recruiting Class: Mike Brkovich, Magic Johnson, Rick Kaye, Jay Vincent.
Achievements: Recovered from embarrassing 18-point defeat to league cellar dweller Northwestern to win 1979 NCAA championship under coach Jud Heathcote with an average victory margin of 20.8 points. Went 25-5 and 26-6 and captured Big Ten titles in Johnson's two seasons before posting losing records (12-15 and 13-14) after he turned pro early.
22. Duke (class of '86)
Recruiting Class: Mark Alarie, Jay Bilas, Johnny Dawkins, David Henderson.
Achievements: Runner-up in 1986 NCAA playoffs with an NCAA-record 37-3 mark after going 24-10 and 23-8 the previous two years following an 11-17 worksheet as freshmen under coach Mike Krzyzewski. Senior season accounted for the group's lone ACC regular-season championship.
23. San Francisco (class of '79)
Recruiting Class: Winford Boynes, Bill Cartwright, Erik Gilberg, Raymond Hamilton (left after two seasons), James Hardy.
Achievements: Went 22-8, 29-2, 22-5 and 22-7 with WCAC championships the last three years. Boynes and Hardy were among the top 13 NBA draft picks after leaving school following their junior season when Dan Belluomini succeeded Bob Gaillard as coach. Cartwright was the third selection overall the next year.
24. Duke (class of '06)
Recruiting Class: Sean Dockery, Lee Melchionni, Shavlik Randolph, J.J. Redick, Shelden Williams.
Achievements: Three seasons with at least 28 victories as All-Americans Redick and Williams exercised all of their collegiate eligibility. Can't be ranked ahead of Michigan's Fab Five because they never reached a Final Four.
25. Kansas (class of '09)
Recruiting Class: Mario Chalmers, Micah Downs (transfer/Gonzaga), Brandon Rush, Julian Wright.
Achievements: Wright left school early for the NBA prior to KU's NCAA title in 2008. None of group was around for the 2008-09 campaign.
26. Syracuse (class of '06)
Recruiting Class: Carmelo Anthony, Billy Edelin, Gerry McNamara.
Achievements: Anthony, the 2003 Final Four MOP, led the champion Orange in scoring in five of its six playoff games. McNamara was Big East Conference Tournament MVP as a senior.
27. Connecticut (class of '07)
Recruiting Class: Josh Boone, Charlie Villanueva, Marcus Williams.
Achievements: Won 2004 NCAA title before each of them left school early for the NBA the next two years.
28. Kansas (class of '05)
Recruiting Class: Keith Langford, Michael Lee, Aaron Miles, Wayne Simien.
Achievements: Splitting time between coaches Roy Williams and Bill Self, this quartet combined for nearly 5,100 points.
29. Marquette (class of '09)
Recruiting Class: Dominic James, Wesley Matthews, Jerel McNeal.
Achievements: Recruited by Tom Crean and playing senior season under Buzz Williams, they combined for more than 5,400 points in compiling four 20-win seasons.
30. Arizona (class of '76)
Recruiting Class: Al Fleming, John Irving (transfer/Hofstra), Eric Money, Coniel Norman, Jim Rappis.
Achievements: Overshadowed by UCLA, UA's "Kiddie Korps" started off 16-10 before members of the original group went 19-7, 22-7 and 24-9 under coach Fred Snowden. Norman averaged 23.9 ppg and Money averaged 18.5 ppg before they turned pro after two seasons. Irving played one season with the Wildcats before transferring to Hofstra, where he led the nation in rebounding in 1975. Fleming became the school's all-time leading rebounder.
31. Purdue (class of '88)
Recruiting Class: Jeff Arnold, Troy Lewis, Todd Mitchell, Dave Stack, Everette Stephens.
Achievements: "The Three Amigos" (Lewis, Mitchell and Stephens) were instrumental in helping the Boilermakers compile a four-year record of 96-28 (.774), including a glittering 29-4 mark as seniors under coach Gene Keady. Lewis and Mitchell still rank among the school's all-time top 10 scorers. Group captured Big Ten Conference titles their last two seasons together. Stephens went on to have the most NBA experience with 38 games.
32. Wichita State (class of '83)
Recruiting Class: Antoine Carr, James Gibbs, Ozell Jones (transfer/Cal State Fullerton), Cliff Levingston.
Achievements: Posted marks of 17-12, 26-7, 23-6 and 25-3 under coach Gene Smithson. Group is somewhat overlooked because the school was on NCAA probation in 1982 and 1983. Levingston left after his junior year. Captured Missouri Valley Conference regular-season championships in 1981 and 1983. Jones played in the NBA with Carr and Levingston.
33. North Carolina (class of '99)
Recruiting Class: Vince Carter, Antawn Jamison, Ademola Okulaja.
Achievements: Coach Dean Smith must have been frustrated in his last two seasons that teams with talents such as Carter and Jamison lost a total of 18 games in 1995-96 and 1996-97.
34. Arizona (class of '05)
Recruiting Class: Will Bynum (transfer/Georgia Tech), Isaiah Fox, Channing Frye, Dennis Latimore (transfer/Notre Dame), Salim Stoudamire.
Achievements: Might have ranked higher if they didn't go through the turmoil of coach Lute Olson's swan song.
35. Kentucky (class of '78)
Recruiting Class: Jack Givens, Dan Hall (transfer/Marshall), James Lee, Mike Phillips, Rick Robey.
Achievements: Freshmen on UK's national runner-up in 1975. Givens (Final Four MOP), Lee, Phillips and Robey represented four of the Wildcats' top five scorers for the Wildcats' 1978 NCAA titlist under coach Joe B. Hall. UK had to settle for participating in the 1976 NIT when Robey missed more than half of the season because of a knee injury.
36. Kansas State (class of '11)
Recruiting Class: Ron Anderson Jr. (transfer/South Florida), Michael Beasley, Fred Brown, Jacob Pullen, Dominique Sutton (transfer/North Carolina Central), Bill Walker.
Achievements: Notched a 21-12 record in their only season together as Beasley and Walker departed for the NBA after freshman campaign.
37. Maryland (class of '81)
Recruiting Class: Ernest Graham, Albert King, Greg Manning.
Achievements: Graham, King and Manning all finished their careers with more than 1,500 points. The Terrapins went 15-13, 19-11, 24-7 (won 1980 ACC regular-season title) and 21-10 under coach Lefty Driesell.
38. Pittsburgh (class of '91)
Recruiting Class: Bobby Martin, Jason Matthews, Sean Miller (RS in 1990), Darelle Porter, Brian Shorter (Prop 48).
Achievements: All five players became 1,000-point scorers in their careers. The Panthers went 24-7 with a Big East Conference title in 1987-88 when they were freshmen before struggling the next couple of seasons under coach Paul Evans.
39. UCLA (class of '83)
Recruiting Class: Darren Daye, Rod Foster, Michael Holton, Cliff Pruitt (transfer/UAB).
Achievements: NCAA Tournament runner-up in 1980 as freshmen under coach Larry Brown. Won Pacific-10 title in '83 under Brown's successor (Larry Farmer). Compiled records of 22-10, 20-7, 21-6 and 23-6.
40. Georgia (class of '83)
Recruiting Class: Terry Fair, Lamar Heard, Dominique Wilkins.
Achievements: The Bulldogs averaged 19 victories annually from 1979-80 through 1982-83 after winning more than 14 games only once the previous 29 seasons.
(Underrated classes failing to generate the headlines they deserved.)
Alcorn State (class of '85)
Recruiting Class: Eddie Archer, Aaron Brandon, Tommy Collier, Michael Phelps.
Achievements: Archer, Brandon, Collier and Phelps all finished their careers with more than 1,200 points. The Braves won three SWAC championships in four years from 1982 through 1985 under coach Davey Whitney, winning NCAA playoff games in 1983 and 1984 when they were eliminated by Georgetown and Kansas by a total of six points.
Butler (class of '12)
Recruiting Class: Gordon Hayward, Shelvin Mack, Ronald Nored, Chase Stigall (redshirt).
Achievements: Hayward nearly hit a game-winning half-court shot in 2010 NCAA title contest. Mack and Nored appeared in back-to-back NCAA championship games. Stigall went on to become one of the Bulldogs' top three-point shooters.
East Tennessee State (class of '91)
Recruiting Class: Greg Dennis, Major Geer, Keith Jennings, Alvin West.
Achievements: All four players became 1,000-point scorers in their careers. East Tennessee State coasted to three consecutive Southern Conference Tournament titles from 1989 through 1991 under coaches Les Robinson and Alan LeForce.
Iowa (class of '89)
Recruiting Class: B.J. Armstrong, Ed Horton, Les Jepsen (freshman redshirt), Roy Marble.
Achievements: George Raveling's final recruiting class with the Hawkeyes (including J.C. signee Kevin Gamble) all played in the NBA after helping Tom Davis capture national coach of the year acclaim in 1986-87.
Southern California (class of '89)
Recruiting Class: Jeff Connelly (transfer/Santa Clara), Hank Gathers (transfer/Loyola Marymount), Bo Kimble (transfer/Loyola Marymount), Tom Lewis (transfer/Pepperdine).
Achievements: The nucleus of USC's class, recruited by Stan Morrison, left to become stars in the West Coast Conference after a modest freshman season (11-17) when George Raveling arrived as coach.
Southern Mississippi (class of '88)
Recruiting Class: Casey Fisher, Derrick Hamilton, Randolph Keys, John White.
Achievements: Keys, Fisher, Hamilton and White all finished their careers with more than 1,300 points. The Golden Eagles, overshadowed in the Metro Conference by Louisville, won the 1987 NIT under coach M.K. Turk when each of the quartet scored in double digits.
Wake Forest (class of '82)
Recruiting Class: Mike Helms, Jim Johnstone, Guy Morgan, Alvis Rogers (RS in 1982).
Achievements: All four players finished their careers with more than 1,100 points under coach Carl Tacy. Morgan, Rogers and Johnstone each grabbed more than 550 rebounds. The Demon Deacons posted back-to-back 20-win seasons for the first time in school history (22-7 in 1980-81 and 21-9 in 1981-82 when they finished both years in third place in the ACC).
In hoop parlance, it's the equivalent of triple-teaming as an unprecedented animosity appears to be escalating toward government unaccountability. Republican lawmakers, perceiving disregard for the Constitution and stonewalling their oversight by withholding documents, are focusing on a series of Amateur Hour White House Administration shenanigans - Benghazi bungling, IRS targeting of conservative groups, incompetent Obamacare rollout (HHS Secretary spent more time fundraising to publicize the health care law rather than testing the enrollment website for glitches) and far-reaching snooping of world leaders (including allies) plus subpoenas of the media.
Despite claims that intimidating and criminalizing the media "is something I've never been involved with or heard of (signed warrant nonetheless)," U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder's intrusive actions impacting freedom of the press isn't the first time he has been in the middle of a firestorm. Conducting an off-the-record session with selected media members does nothing to resolve many questions about his priorities seemingly more in favor of towelhead terrorists than law-abiding American citizens such as Uncle Sam, Father Jim and Brother Bob. Holder previously failed to divulge sufficient information about the botched "Fast and Furious" ATF "gunwalking" operation selling 2,000 firearms to Mexican drug cartels. The nation's top cop, treating the DOJ as a partisan sanctuary community according to opponents, seemed to be shedding light on as much material regarding the controversial ATF topic and media meddling as the number of FGM he had for Columbia's freshman basketball squad in 1969-70 (misfired on all four field-goal attempts). Parcing words like "is," demented Demorat defenders probably would "enable" Holder if the AG said he didn't lie to Congress about monitoring the press' co-conspirator calls or was Columbia's all-time leading varsity scorer instead of Leonard "Buck" Jenkins (1,766 points from 1990-93).
It doesn't seem possible but the DOJ reportedly also facilitated anti-George Zimmerman protests in Florida and has failed to adequately monitor runaway overtime payments in his department. There is a growing sentiment calling for the resignation of Holder, one of several former college basketball players in the Obama Administration.
Whether or not there is a cover-up or obstruction of justice, lost amid the juvenile freshman-like gamesmanship is the moral obligation to supply a full explanation to the distraught family of murdered border patrol agent Brian Terry that feels as if the government is hiding something. The House oversight committee leader for the Democrats said they "would not rest" until they found answers but some shameless political parasites on The Hill are more concerned with covering their side's back rather than discerning who shot Terry in the back. The uncompliant Holder, claiming he made an "extraordinary offer" (estimated mostly-redacted 7,600 of 80,000-plus subpoenaed documents) before requesting executive privilege from the White House, has been in hot water for a variety of issues, including his responses regarding other issues such as the New Black Panther Party, voter rights, enforcement of immigration laws and national security leaks. Meanwhile, the CYAG (Cover Your _ _ ) White House tried to protect Holder with executive privilege and still voices support for him despite Mr. Recusal's unprincipled surveillance of the media.
(With)Holder, an Ivy League freshman the same year as Princeton's Brian Taylor and Harvard's James Brown, was confirmed as AG despite his outrageous pandering to leftist special interests in orchestrating a pardon for international fugitive Marc Rich and clemency for 16 members of a terrorist group (FALN). Obama, a backup JV basketball player for Occidental (CA), said as an Illinois Senator that the President is not the AG's client. But does his administration emphasize rules for radicals more than principles of patriots?
The feds' priorities were more concerned with detaining an obscure producer of an anti-Islamic film making light of the prophet Mohammed. Meanwhile, the stonewalling Obama Administration - either grossly incompetent or immersed in a corrupt cover-up - dealt with a terrorist attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, by standing in front of caskets at an airport hangar (plus the White House press corps, the U.N. and national politically-oriented shows) offering an orchestrated narrative claiming the nondescript video was responsible for a spontaneous murder of the American ambassador and three other Americans. Unbelievably, a Navy SEAL among the deceased violated stand-down orders to help save numerous individuals at the embassy and then fought the terrorists for seven hours while his pleas for backup at an annex were ignored by morally-bankrupt government officials real-time watching events unfold. Months later, the apologist-in-chief and cowardly cronies were still striving to supply a cogent response to their deflect-and-deny sacrificial inaction. They would rather sanctimoniously flash half a peace sign to opponents by promoting Susan "Damsel in Distress" Rice despite her incessant Benghazi video lies to everyone across the nation with a triple-digit IQ.
The father of slain SEAL Tyrone Woods said bombastic VP Joe Biden asked an incredibly inappropriate question: "Did your son always have balls the size of cue balls?" Countered Woods' father: "Better to die a hero than to live as a coward." If you're interested in political players and seek a mite more insight than you'll generate in the morning from MSNBC's Mika the Mannequin, CollegeHoopedia.com has conducted extensive research on politicians and political appointees who were college hoopsters. The vast majority of them honor the Constitution more than splitting-hairs Holder, who is anything but the "right" man to investigate himself or refute the FBI with a probe of Zimmerman.
Extra! Extra! Read all about memorable major league baseball achievements and moments involving former college basketball players! Numerous ex-college hoopsters had front-row seats to many of the most notable games, transactions and dates in MLB history. Unless you habitually pore over the content at baseballlibrary.com, baseballreference.com and nationalpastime.com, following is a June calendar involving such versatile athletes:
30 - In 1978, Larry Doby (reserve guard for Virginia Union's 1943 CIAA titlist) became the second black MLB manager, succeeding Bob Lemon as skipper of the Chicago White Sox. . . . San Diego Padres OF Tony Gwynn (All-WAC second-team selection with San Diego State in 1979-80 and 1980-81) and two teammates each sock a three-run homer in a 15-6 rout of the Oakland A's in 1997. . . . Commencing the game by fanning the side on nine pitches in the opening inning, Los Angeles Dodgers P Sandy Koufax (Cincinnati's freshman squad in 1953-54) hurled a no-hitter against the New York Mets in 1962. . . . In 1938, New York Giants OF Hank Lieber (played for Arizona in 1931) launched the final homer at Philadelphia's Baker Bowl before the Phillies moved to Shibe Park. . . . OF Kite Thomas (averaged 5.1 ppg for Kansas State in 1946-47) awarded on waivers from the Philadelphia Athletics to the Washington Senators in 1953.
29 - Boston Red Sox rookie P Boo Ferriss (Mississippi State letterman in 1941) contributed a run-scoring single and two-run, ninth-inning homer in a 4-2 decision over the Chicago White Sox in 1945. . . . OF David Justice (led Thomas More, KY, in assists in 1984-85), acquired by the New York Yankees from the Cleveland Indians in 2000, went on to become the first player to collect more than 50 RBI in a single season with two different clubs. . . . OF Charlie Keller (three-year letterman with Maryland from 1934-35 through 1936-37) homered in the nightcap of a 1941 doubleheader sweep of the Washington Senators by the New York Yankees, extending the Bronx Bombers' streak to a MLB-record 25 consecutive contests with a round-tripper. . . . Detroit Tigers RF Jim Northrup (second-leading scorer and third-leading rebounder for Alma, MI, in 1958-59) set a MLB mark with his third grand slam in a week in 1968.
28 - LF Lou Johnson (Kentucky State teammate of legendary HBCU coach Davey Whitney averaged 5.7 ppg and 2 rpg in 1951-52) traded by the Chicago Cubs to the Cleveland Indians in 1968. . . . In 1951, New York Giants OF Monte Irvin (played basketball for Lincoln, PA, 1 1/2 years in late 1930s) swatted two homers off Brooklyn Dodgers P Ralph Branca (sixth-leading scorer for NYU in 1943-44) in same game. . . . OF Don Lund (two-year starter for Michigan in mid-1940s) awarded on waivers from the Brooklyn Dodgers to the St. Louis Browns in 1948. . . . New York Yankees SS Gene Michael (Kent State's leading scorer with 14 ppg in 1957-58) pulled hidden-ball trick against the Cleveland Indians in 1969. . . . Cincinnati Reds P Eppa Rixey (Virginia letterman in 1912 and 1914) banged out four hits, including a homer and two doubles, in a 5-2 triumph over the St. Louis Cardinals in the opener of a 1924 doubleheader. . . . Chicago Cubs SS Roy Smalley Jr. (one of top scorers for Drury, MO, in 1942-43 and 1943-44) went for the cycle in a 15-3 romp over the St. Louis Cardinals in 1950.
27 - INF Jack Barry (letterman for Holy Cross in 1908) traded by the Boston Red Sox to the Philadelphia Athletics in 1919. . . . 2B Marv Breeding (played for Samford in mid-1950s) traded by the Houston Astros to the Chicago Cubs in 1967. . . . Detroit Tigers 1B Darrell Evans (member of Jerry Tarkanian-coached Pasadena City, CA, club winning 1967 state community college crown) registered his 2,000th career hit with a first-inning, two-run homer against the Baltimore Orioles in 1987. . . . San Diego Padres OF Tony Gwynn (All-WAC second-team selection with San Diego State in 1979-80 and 1980-81) went 3-for-4 against the Atlanta Braves, raising his batting average in 1987 to .387 en route to finishing at .370. . . . P Mark Hendrickson (two-time All-Pacific-10 Conference selection paced Washington State four straight seasons in rebounding from 1992-93 through 1995-96) traded by the Tampa Devil Rays to the Los Angeles Dodgers in a five-player swap in 2006. . . . 3B Graig Nettles (shot 87.8% from free-throw line for San Diego State in 1963-64) belted a 14th-inning, two-run homer to give the New York Yankees a 6-4 victory over the Boston Red Sox in 1978. . . . Matt Thornton (averaged 5.8 ppg and 2.4 rpg for Grand Valley State, MI, from 1995-96 through 1997-98) made his MLB debut in 2004, pitching four scoreless innings of relief with the Seattle Mariners against the San Diego Padres.
26 - OF Bob Cerv (ranked fourth on Nebraska's career scoring list in 1949-50 when finishing his career) purchased from the New York Yankees by the Houston Colt .45's in 1962. . . . St. Louis Cardinals P Bob Gibson (Creighton's leading scorer in 1955-56 and 1956-57) hurled his fifth consecutive shutout (3-0 against the Pittsburgh Pirates) in the opener of a 1968 doubleheader. . . . In 1966, Los Angeles Dodgers P Sandy Koufax (Cincinnati's freshman squad in 1953-54) matched his N.L. record of seven straight strikeouts in back-to-back nine-inning appearances en route to a 2-1 victory at Atlanta. . . . Detroit Tigers 1B-OF Rick Leach (averaged 15.5 ppg for Michigan's JV squad in 1975-76), mired in a 3-for-35 nosedive, broke up a no-hit bid by Baltimore's Storm Davis with a ninth-inning homer in 1983. . . . P Paul Reuschel (Western Illinois' leading rebounder in 1966-67 with 15.2 per game) traded by the Chicago Cubs to the Cleveland Indians in 1978.
25 - Brooklyn Dodgers 1B Gil Hodges (played for Oakland City, IN, in 1947 and 1948) went for the cycle (including two homers) in a 17-10 triumph at Pittsburgh in 1949. . . . OF Bill Nicholson (competed for Washington College, MD, in mid-1930s) purchased from the Washington Senators by the Chicago Cubs for $35,000 in 1939. . . . New York Yankees OF-DH Dave Winfield (starting forward with Minnesota's first NCAA playoff team in 1972) stroked five singles against the Detroit Tigers in 1984. It was one of three five-hit games for Winfield this month, tying a mark set by Ty Cobb.
24 - INF-OF Leo Burke (averaged 9.2 ppg for Virginia Tech in 1952-53 and 1953-54) traded by the St. Louis Cardinals to the Chicago Cubs for P Barney Schultz in 1963. . . . 1B Walt Dropo (Connecticut's first player ever to average 20 points for a season with 21.7 ppg in 1942-43) awarded on waivers from the Chicago White Sox to the Cincinnati Reds in 1958. . . . New York Yankees reliever Steve Hamilton (Morehead State's leading scorer and rebounder in 1956-57 and 1957-58) struck out Cleveland Indians 1B Tony Horton with a couple of "Folly Floaters" in the nightcap of a 1970 doubleheader. . . . In 1958, New York Yankees INF Jerry Lumpe (member of Southwest Missouri State's 1952 NAIA Tournament championship team) hit his first big league homer (at Chicago off Early Wynn of the White Sox). . . . Detroit Tigers RF Jim Northrup (second-leading scorer and third-leading rebounder for Alma, MI, in 1958-59) hit grand slams in back-to-back innings (fifth and sixth) against the Cleveland Indians in 1968. . . . Cincinnati Reds P Eppa Rixey (Virginia letterman in 1911-12 and 1913-14) went into the eighth inning with a perfect game but wound up losing to the Pittsburgh Pirates, 4-3, in 1924. . . . In 1947, Brooklyn Dodgers 1B Jackie Robinson (highest scoring average in PCC both of his seasons with UCLA in 1939-40 and 1940-41) swiped home in the fifth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates. It was the first of 19 times in his career that he pilfered home. . . . In 1991, California Angels RF-DH Dave Winfield (starting forward with Minnesota's first NCAA playoff team in 1972) went 5-fot-5 against the Kansas City Royals and became the oldest player in MLB history to go for the cycle (39).
23 - SS Alvin Dark (letterman for LSU and USL during World War II) traded by the Philadelphia Phillies to the Milwaukee Braves in 1960. . . . OF Larry Doby (reserve guard for Virginia Union's 1943 CIAA titlist), retired from the Cleveland Indians, joined P Don Newcombe in 1962 as the first former MLB players to compete for a Japanese team. Doby's season batting average overseas will be a modest .225. . . . 1B Walt Dropo (Connecticut's first player ever to average 20 points for a season with 21.7 ppg in 1942-43) and C Sammy White (All-PCC Northern Division first-five selection for Washington in 1947-48 and 1948-49) both homer when 12 consecutive Boston Red Sox players reach base in an 11-run, fourth-inning outburst at Detroit in 1952. Seven years later, Dropo was traded by the Cincinnati Reds to the Baltimore Orioles. . . . INF Howard Freigau (played for Ohio Wesleyan) purchased from the Brooklyn Robins by the Boston Braves in 1928. . . . New York Mets OF Jimmy Piersall celebrated by running around the bases backwards in 1963 after the free spirit hit the 100th homer of his MLB career and only one in the N.L. The round-tripper was yielded by the Philadelphia Phillies' Dallas Green (Delaware's second-leading scorer and rebounder in 1954-55). . . . Chicago Cubs INF-OF Harvey Hendrick (Vanderbilt letterman in 1918) hammered a game-winning, pinch-hit grand slam in the 10th inning against the Philadelphia Phillies in the opener of a 1933 doubleheader. . . . P Bill Krueger (led WCAC in free-throw percentage as a Portland freshman in 1975-76) traded by the Oakland Athletics to the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1987. . . . OF Sam Mele (NYU's leading scorer in 1943 NCAA playoffs) purchased from the Boston Red Sox by the Cincinnati Reds in 1955. Six years later, Mele became manager of the Minnesota Twins. . . . Jim Riggleman (two-year letterman for Frostburg State, MD, averaged 7.2 ppg in early 1970s) resigned as Washington Nationals manager in 2011 on the heels of them winning 11 of 12 games when the franchise failed to give him a contract extension. . . . P Garry Roggenburk (led Dayton in scoring all three seasons from 1959-60 through 1961-62 and grabbed a school-record 32 rebounds in his third varsity game en route to pacing the Flyers in rebounding his first two years) purchased from the Boston Red Sox by the Seattle Pilots in 1969.
22 - OF Billy Cowan (co-captain of Utah's 1960 NCAA playoff team) traded by the Chicago Cubs to the Philadelphia Phillies in 1966. . . . Cleveland Indians OF Larry Doby (reserve guard for Virginia Union's 1943 CIAA titlist) homered in both ends of a 1953 doubleheader against the Washington Senators. . . . SS Dick Groat (NCAA unanimous first-team All-American for Duke in 1951-52 when he was runner-up in the nation in scoring) purchased from the Philadelphia Phillies by the San Francisco Giants in 1967. . . . In 2003, Mark Hendrickson (two-time All-Pacific-10 Conference selection paced Washington State four straight seasons in rebounding from 1992-93 through 1995-96) became the first Toronto Blue Jays pitcher to hit a home run (against the Montreal Expos). . . . Setting a new record for a night game, Los Angeles Dodgers P Sandy Koufax (Cincinnati's freshman squad in 1953-54) fanned 16 Philadelphia Phillies in a 6-2 triumph in 1959. . . . P Dave Leonhard (averaged 4.8 ppg with Johns Hopkins, MD, in 1961-62), joining the Baltimore Orioles on a weekend leave from the National Guard, tossed a three-hit shutout against the Cleveland Indians in the nightcap of a 1969 doubleheader. . . . In 1982, St. Louis Cardinals P John Stuper (two-time all-conference player for Butler County, KS, Community College) surrendered Pete Rose's 3,772nd career hit. The third-inning double moved Rose past Hank Aaron into second place on MLB's all-time list.
21 - P Walt Huntzinger (All-EIBL second-five selection in 1921-22 with Penn) awarded on waivers from the St. Louis Cardinals to the Chicago Cubs in 1926. . . . Chicago White Sox P Ted Lyons (two-time All-SWC first-team selection for Baylor in early 1920s) notched his 250th career win in 1942. He will finish the season hurling complete games in all 20 starts, lead the A.L. with a 2.10 ERA, and then enter the U.S. Marine Corps at age 42. . . . In 1973, San Diego Padres OF Dave Winfield (starting forward with Minnesota's first NCAA playoff team in 1972) whacked his first of 465 MLB homers (off Ken Forsch of the Houston Astros).
20 - P Bob Chlupsa (led Manhattan in rebounding in 1965-66 and 1966-67) traded by the St. Louis Cardinals to the San Diego Padres in 1972. . . . 1B Tony Clark (San Diego State's leading scorer in WAC games in 1991-92) clobbered two of Detroit's team-record eight homers in the Tigers' 18-6 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays in 2000. . . . Hall of Fame C Mickey Cochrane (Boston University player in early 1920s) collected four of the Philadelphia Athletics' 26 hits in an 18-11 decision over the Chicago White Sox in 1932. . . . Lone MLB triumph for Paul Edmundson (averaged 12.4 ppg and 6.6 rpg with Cal State Northridge from 1962-63 through 1964-65) came in his debut in 1969 when he hurled a two-hitter for the Chicago White Sox against the California Angels. . . . P Ed Halicki (NAIA All-American third-team choice in 1971-72 when he led Monmouth in scoring with 21 ppg after setting a school single-game rebounding record with 40 the previous season) awarded on waivers to the California Angels from the San Francisco Giants in 1980. . . . Lee Smith (averaged 3.4ppg and 1.9 rpg with Northwestern State in 1976-77) preserved the California Angels' 3-2 verdict over the Kansas City Royals in 1995, setting a MLB mark with his 18th save in 18 opportunities (record subsequently broken).
19 - New York Giants OF Hoot Evers (starter for Illinois in 1939-40) climaxed a four-run, ninth-inning rally with a pinch-hit homer against the St. Louis Cardinals in 1954.
18 - Cincinnati Reds OF Frankie Baumholtz (MVP in 1941 NIT and first player in Ohio University history to score 1,000 points in a career) collected four hits and 1B Babe Young (Fordham letterman in 1935-36) contributed a pair of three-run homers to support teammate Ewell Blackwell's no-hitter against the Boston Braves in 1947. . . . 1B Walt Dropo (Connecticut's first player ever to average 20 points for a season with 21.7 ppg in 1942-43) and OF Dick Gernert (Temple letterman in 1948-49) whacked the only homers for the Boston Red Sox while tallying 17 runs in the seventh inning of a 23-3 rout of the Detroit Tigers in 1953. . . . In 1962, Los Angeles Dodgers P Sandy Koufax (Cincinnati's freshman squad in 1953-54) outdueled St. Louis Cardinals P Bob Gibson (Creighton's leading scorer in 1955-56 and 1956-57). It marked the third time Koufax won a game, 1-0, on a Tommy Davis homer. . . . Spoiling the MLB debut of Hall of Fame P Robin Roberts (Michigan State's second-leading scorer in 1945-46 and 1946-47), the Pittsburgh Pirates edged the Philadelphia Phillies, 2-0, in 1948. . . . Arizona Diamondbacks rookie 2B Junior Spivey (redshirted his only semester at Northwestern Oklahoma State on a basketball scholarship before transferring to a KS junior college) had five hits in a 14-5 thrashing of the Houston Astros in 2001. . . . In 1986, San Diego Padres P Tim Stoddard (starting forward opposite All-American David Thompson for North Carolina State's 1974 NCAA champion) slugged his first and only MLB homer. He appeared in another 128 games but never had another at-bat. . . . C Sammy White (All-PCC Northern Division first-five selection for Washington in 1947-48 and 1948-49) tied a MLB record by scoring three runs in one inning when the Boston Red Sox tallied 17 in the seventh against the Detroit Tigers in 1953.
17 - Boston Red Sox OF Dick Gernert (Temple basketball letterman in 1948-49) walloped two homers in a 17-1 romp over the Detroit Tigers in 1953. . . . Rookie Wynn Hawkins (Baldwin-Wallace's all-time leading scorer upon graduation in 1957) yielded Boston Red Sox Hall of Famer Ted Williams' 500th home run (fourth player in MLB history to reach that plateau) at Cleveland in 1960. . . . Chicago Cubs SS Don Kessinger (three-time All-SEC selection for Ole Miss from 1961-62 through 1963-64 while finishing among nation's top 45 scorers each year) went 6-for-6 in a 10-inning, 7-6 win over the St. Louis Cardinals in 1971. . . . Milwaukee Brewers OF Joe Lahoud (letterman for New Haven, CT, in mid-1960s) contributed a grand slam en route to six RBI in a 15-5 rout of the Chicago White Sox in 1973. . . . Starting P Robin Roberts (Michigan State's second-leading scorer in 1945-46 and 1946-47) scored the winning run in the 15th inning to give the Philadelphia Phillies a 3-2 decision over the St. Louis Cardinals in 1954. . . . Brooklyn Dodgers 1B Jackie Robinson (highest scoring average in Pacific Coast Conference both of his seasons with UCLA in 1939-40 and 1940-41) left 13 runners stranded in a 1951 doubleheader against the Boston Braves. . . . C John Stephenson (scored 1,361 points for William Carey, MS, in early 1960s) shipped from the New York Mets to the Chicago Cubs in 1967 to complete an earlier deal.
16 - C Ferrell Anderson (Kansas letterman in 1936-37 and 1937-38) purchased from the Philadelphia Phillies by the St. Louis Browns in 1951. . . . Boston Red Sox rookie P Boo Ferriss (Mississippi State letterman in 1941) lost against the New York Yankees, 3-2, in 1945 after starting his career with eight victories (four of them shutouts). . . . Light-hitting INF Jerry Kindall (averaged 6.9 ppg for Minnesota in 1955-56) connected for a game-winning two-run homer in the ninth inning to give the Cleveland Indians a 10-9 win over the New York Yankees in 1962.
15 - LF Morrie Arnovich (played for Wisconsin-Superior in early 1930s) traded by the Philadelphia Phillies to the Cincinnati Reds in 1940. . . . OF Frankie Baumholtz (MVP in 1941 NIT and first player in Ohio University history to score 1,000 points in a career) traded by the Cincinnati Reds to the Chicago Cubs in 1949. . . . 1B Donn Clendenon (played for Morehouse, GA) traded by the Montreal Expos to the New York Mets in 1969. . . . In 1931, the St. Louis Cardinals, in a move making room for Pepper Martin, traded CF Taylor Douthit (California letterman from 1922 through 1924) to the Cincinnati Reds for OF Wally Roettger (Illinois letterman in 1921-22 and 1922-23) in a swap one day after Douthit stroked seven straight hits in a doubleheader sweep over the Philadelphia Phillies. . . . San Francisco Giants 1B Darrell Evans (member of Jerry Tarkanian-coached Pasadena City, CA, club winning 1967 state junior college crown) socked three homers in a 7-1 triumph over the Houston Astros in 1983. . . . Detroit Tigers OF Hoot Evers (starter for Illinois in 1939-40) had his 19-game hitting streak snapped by the Philadelphia Athletics in 1950. . . . C-OF Joe Ferguson (member of Pacific's 1967 NCAA playoff team) traded by the Los Angeles Dodgers to the St. Louis Cardinals in 1976. . . . INF Jake Flowers (member of 1923 "Flying Pentagon" championship squad for Washington College, MD) awarded on waivers to the St. Louis Cardinals from the Brooklyn Robins in 1931. . . . 1B Gary Holle (Siena's scoring and rebounding leader in 1974-75 and 1975-76) traded by the Texas Rangers to the Chicago White Sox in 1979. . . . In 1969, Chicago Cubs SS Don Kessinger (three-time All-SEC selection for Ole Miss from 1961-62 through 1963-64 while finishing among the nation's top 45 scorers each year) established a N.L. record with his 54th consecutive errorless contest to start a season. . . . OF Joe Lahoud (letterman for New Haven, CT, in mid-1960s) purchased from the California Angels by the Texas Rangers in 1976. . . . Chicago White Sox P Ted Lyons (two-time All-SWC first-team selection for Baylor in early 1920s) notched his ninth straight victory in 1927. His two-run triple in the eighth inning broke a 4-4 deadlock against the Philadelphia Athletics. . . . Bake McBride (averaged 12.7 ppg and 8.1 rpg in 21 games with Westminster, MO, in 1968-69 and 1969-70) traded by the St. Louis Cardinals to the Philadelphia Phillies in 1977. He went on to hit .339 the remainder of the season for Philly. . . . INF Johnny O'Brien (two-time All-American with Seattle was first college player to crack 1,000-point plateau in a single season when he scored 1,051 in 37 games in 1951-52) traded by the Pittsburgh Pirates with 3B Gene Freese to the St. Louis Cardinals for SS Dick Schofield and cash in 1958. . . . P Joe Ostrowski (led Scranton in scoring with 15.1 ppg in 1942-43) traded by the St. Louis Browns to the New York Yankees in 1950. . . . P Steve Renko (averaged 9.9 ppg and 5.8 rpg as a Kansas sophomore in 1963-64) traded by the New York Mets to the Montreal Expos in 1969. . . . P Don Schwall (All-Big Seven Conference second-team selection as a sophomore in 1956-57 when he led Oklahoma in rebounding) traded by the Pittsburgh Pirates to the Atlanta Braves for P Billy O'Dell in 1966. . . . 2B Wayne Terwilliger (two-year letterman for Western Michigan averaged 5.6 ppg in his final season in 1947-48) traded by the Chicago Cubs to the Brooklyn Dodgers in an eight-player swap in 1951. . . . 1B-OF Preston Ward (second-leading scorer for Southwest Missouri State in 1946-47 and 1948-49) traded by the Cleveland Indians to the Kansas City Athletics in 1958. . . . C Sammy White (All-PCC Northern Division first-five selection for Washington in 1947-48) purchased from the Boston Red Sox by the Milwaukee Braves in 1961.
14 - Boston Bees 1B-OF Buddy Hassett (played for Manhattan teams that won a school-record 17 consecutive games in 1930 and 1931) fouled out late in a game against the Chicago Cubs after hitting safely in 10 straight at-bats over three contests in 1940. . . . SS Alvin Dark (letterman for LSU and USL during World War II) traded with three additional players by the New York Giants in 1956 to the St. Louis Cardinals for future Hall of Fame 2B Red Schoendienst and three players. . . . 1B Mike Hargrove (Northwestern Oklahoma State letterman) traded by the San Diego Padres to the Cleveland Indians in 1979. . . . P Roy Parmelee (letterman for Eastern Michigan in 1924-25 and 1925-26) purchased from the Philadelphia Athletics by the Boston Red Sox in 1939. . . . C Hugh Poland (Western Kentucky letterman from 1931-32 through 1933-34) traded by the Philadelphia Phillies to the Cincinnati Reds in 1947. . . . New York Giants P Hal Schumacher (played for St. Lawrence, NY, in early 1930s) hurled a five-hit shutout against the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1936. . . . Cincinnati Reds closer Jeff Shaw (freshman guard for 31-5 Rio Grande, OH, team participating in 1985 NAIA Tournament), entering the game with an 0.97 ERA, yielded five runs on seven hits in the ninth and 10th innings as the Houston Astros rallied to win, 6-3, in 1998.
13 - 1B Dale Alexander (starting center for Milligan, TN, in mid-1920s) traded by the Detroit Tigers to the Boston Red Sox in 1932. . . . 2B Jerry Adair (one of Oklahoma State's three leading scorers in 1956-57 and 1957-58 while ranking among the nation's top 12 free-throw shooters each season) traded by the Baltimore Orioles to the Chicago White Sox in 1966. . . . P Jim Bibby (Fayetteville State, NC, backup player and brother of UCLA All-American Henry Bibby) traded by the Texas Rangers to the Cleveland Indians in 1975. . . . 1B Darrell Evans (member of Jerry Tarkanian-coached Pasadena City, CA, club winning 1967 state community college crown) traded by the Atlanta Braves to the San Francisco Giants in 1976. . . . In 1962, Los Angeles Dodgers P Sandy Koufax (Cincinnati's freshman squad in 1953-54) whacked his first MLB homer (off fellow Hall of Fame lefthander Warren Spahn of the Milwaukee Braves). Koufax went on to collect one more career round-tripper. . . . New York Giants P Christy Mathewson (played for Bucknell at turn of 20th Century) hurled a no-hitter against Chicago in a 1-0 win in 1905. . . . OF Sam Mele (NYU's leading scorer in 1943 NCAA playoffs) traded by the Boston Red Sox to the Washington Senators in 1949. . . . New York Yankees SS Gene Michael (Kent State's leading scorer with 14 ppg in 1957-58) pulled hidden-ball trick for the first of two times in a six-week span in 1970. . . . Philadelphia Phillies Hall of Fame P Robin Roberts (Michigan State's second-leading scorer in 1945-46 and 1946-47) yielded three consecutive triples to INF Danny O'Connell of the Milwaukee Braves in 1956. . . . P Rollie Sheldon (third-leading scorer as a sophomore for Connecticut's 1960 NCAA Tournament team) traded by the Kansas City Athletics to the Boston Red Sox in a six-player swap in 1966. . . . INF Gary Sutherland (Southern California's fifth-leading scorer in 1963-64 when he averaged 7.4 ppg) purchased from the Montreal Expos by the Houston Astros in 1972.
12 - Eighteen-year-old P Ralph Branca (sixth-leading scorer for NYU in 1943-44) made his Brooklyn Dodgers debut, striking out the first three New York Giants batters he faced in 1944. . . . San Francisco Giants 1B Darrell Evans (member of Jerry Tarkanian-coached Pasadena City, CA, club winning 1967 state community college crown) contributed a double and homer in the fourth inning when they scored all of their runs in an 8-5 win over the Cincinnati Reds in 1983. . . . P Johnny Gee (captain of Michigan's 16-4 team in 1936-37) purchased from the Pittsburgh Pirates by the New York Giants in 1944. . . . Brooklyn Dodgers 3B Harvey Hendrick (Vanderbilt letterman in 1918) stole second, third and home against the Chicago Cubs in the eighth inning in 1928. . . . Brooklyn Dodgers 1B Gil Hodges (played for Oakland City, IN, in 1947 and 1948) hammered a grand slam en route to amassing eight RBI in a 20-7 triumph over the Cincinnati Reds in 1949. . . . In 1954, P Jim Wilson (letterman for San Diego State's 1942 NAIA Tournament participant) hurled a no-hitter for the Milwaukee Braves against Hall of Famer Robin Roberts (Michigan State's second-leading scorer in 1945-46 and 1946-47) and the Philadelphia Phillies. . . . OF-3B Chuck Workman (All-MIAA selection was leading scorer in inaugural NAIA Tournament won by Central Missouri State in 1937) traded by the Boston Braves to the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1946.
11 - Hall of Fame C Rick Ferrell (played for Guilford, NC, in mid-1920s) traded with his brother (P Wes Ferrell) from the Boston Red Sox to the Washington Senators in 1937. . . . INF Jerry Kindall (averaged 6.9 ppg for Minnesota in 1955-56) traded by the Cleveland Indians to the Minnesota Twins in a three-team swap including the Los Angeles Angels in 1964. . . . OF Danny Litwhiler (member of JV basketball squad with Bloomsburg, PA, three years in mid-1930s) among three St. Louis Cardinals who hit back-to-back-to-back sixth-inning homers in the nightcaqp of a 1944 doubleheader. . . . In 1972, 3B Graig Nettles (shot 87.8% from free-throw line for San Diego State in 1963-64) homered for the Cleveland Indians and brother Jim Nettles homered for the Minnesota Twins in the same game. . . . INF Paul Popovich (averaged 3.3 ppg for West Virginia's 1960 NCAA playoff team) wound up with the Chicago Cubs in 1969 after being traded twice on the same day (by the Los Angeles Dodgers and Montreal Expos). . . . Boston Red Sox C Sammy White (All-PCC Northern Division first-five selection for Washington in 1947-48 and 1948-49) clobbered a ninth-inning grand slam off Satchel Paige to defeat the St. Louis Browns, 11-9, in 1952. White completed his HR trot by rounding third base and crawling from half-way home and kissing the plate.
10 - P Joe Gibbon (two-time All-SEC forward for Ole Miss was nation's second-leading scorer as a senior in 1956-57) traded by the San Francisco Giants to the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1969. . . . Recently-acquired OF Sam Mele (NYU's leading scorer in 1943 NCAA playoffs) knocked in six fourth-inning runs (three-run HR and bases-loaded triple) for the Chicago White Sox in a 1952 game at Philadelphia. . . . Cleveland Indians P Sonny Siebert (team-high 16.7 ppg for Missouri in 1957-58 as an All-Big Eight Conference second-team selection) hurls no-hitter against the Washington Senators in 1966. . . . 2B Junior Spivey (redshirted his only semester at Northwestern Oklahoma State on a basketball scholarship before transferring to a KS junior college) traded by the Milwaukee Brewers to the Washington Nationals in 2005. . . . INF Gary Sutherland (Southern California's fifth-leading scorer in 1963-64 when he averaged 7.4 ppg) traded by the Detroit Tigers to the Milwaukee Brewers in 1976.
9 - Baltimore Orioles P Mike Flanagan (averaged 13.9 ppg for UMass' 15-1 freshman basketball squad in 1971-72) shut out the Detroit Tigers in 1984, beating them for the second time in a week. . . . In 2008, Florida Marlins P Mark Hendrickson (two-time All-Pacific-10 Conference selection paced Washington State in rebounding four straight seasons from 1992-93 through 1995-96) yielded the 600th home run of the career of Ken Griffey Jr. . . . OF Danny Litwhiler (member of JV squad with Bloomsburg, PA, three years in mid-1930s) purchased from the St. Louis Cardinals by the Boston Braves in 1946. . . . Sam Mele (NYU's leading scorer in 1943 NCAA playoffs) replaced as manager of the Minnesota Twins by Cal Ermer in 1967. . . . Montreal Expos P Steve Renko (averaged 9.9 ppg and 5.8 rpg as a Kansas sophomore in 1963-64) hurled the first of his two one-hitters in a month in 1971 (against San Francisco Giants and Philadelphia Phillies).
8 - Boston Red Sox 1B Walt Dropo (Connecticut's first player ever to average 20 points for a season with 21.7 ppg in 1942-43), en route to becoming 1950 A.L. Rookie of the Year, contributed two homers, seven RBI and five runs scored in a 29-4 romp over the St. Louis Browns in the most lopsided result in the 20th Century. . . . New York Yankees 1B-OF Buddy Hassett (played for Manhattan teams that won a school-record 17 consecutive games in 1930 and 1931) extended his hit streak to 20 games with a pair of singles against the Cleveland Indians in 1942. . . . P Cal Koonce (standout for Campbell in 1960 and 1961 when North Carolina-based school was a junior college) purchased from the New York Mets by the Boston Red Sox in 1970. . . . Bonus baby Sandy Koufax (Cincinnati's freshman squad in 1953-54) activated from the injury list by the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1955. They made room for him by optioning P Tommy Lasorda, who eventually managed them for 21 years from 1976 to 1996. . . . P Dennis Rasmussen (sixth-man for Creighton averaged 5.1 ppg in three seasons from 1977-78 through 1979-80) traded by the Cincinnati Reds to the San Diego Padres in 1988.
7 - SS Bill Almon (averaged 2.5 ppg in half a season for Brown's 1972-73 team ending the Bears' streak of 12 straight losing records) selected first overall in 1974 amateur draft featuring 12 of first 13 choices going on to become major leaguers. . . . OF Jim Lyttle (led Florida State in free-throw shooting in 1965-66 when he averaged 12.4 ppg) selected in first round (10th pick overall) by the New York Yankees in 1966 amateur draft. . . . New York Giants Hall of Fame P Christy Mathewson (played basketball for Bucknell at turn of 20th Century) combined with teammate Joe McGinnity to surrender 11 runs in the opening inning of a 19-0 drubbing by the Chicago Cubs in 1906. It is the worst setback in Giants' history. . . . OF Dave Winfield (starting forward with Minnesota's first NCAA playoff team in 1972) picked fourth overall by the San Diego Padres in 1973 amateur draft goes straight to the majors. . . . 1B Babe Young (Fordham letterman in 1935-36) traded by the New York Giants to the Cincinnati Reds in 1947.
6 - P Mike Barlow (Syracuse substitute from 1967-68 through 1969-70) traded by the Houston Astros to the California Angels in 1976. . . . P Jim Bibby (Fayetteville State, NC, backup player and brother of UCLA All-American Henry Bibby) traded by the St. Louis Cardinals to the Texas Rangers in 1973. . . . San Diego Padres OF Tony Gwynn (All-WAC second-team selection with San Diego State in 1979-80 and 1980-81) stroked a ninth-inning single on a 3-0 delivery to end Tom Browning's bid for a perfect game with the Cincinnati Reds in 1988. . . . OF Danny Litwhiler (member of JV basketball squad with Bloomsburg, PA, three years in mid-1930s) notched the only for the Philadelphia Phillies off Johnny Vander Meer of the Cincinnati Reds in a 1941 outing. . . . Robin Roberts (Michigan State's second-leading scorer in 1945-46 and 1946-47) registered his only victory in 1961 (3-2 at San Francisco). He finished with the worst-ever season record (1-10 in final year with Philadelphia Phillies) for a Hall of Fame pitcher.
5 - P Atlee Hammaker (averaged 5.3 ppg as a freshman in 1976-77 and 4.9 ppg as a sophomore in 1977-78 under East Tennessee State coach Sonny Smith) selected in first round (21st pick overall) by the Kansas City Royals in 1979 amateur draft. . . . INF-OF Harvey Hendrick (Vanderbilt letterman in 1918) purchased from the St. Louis Cardinals by the Cincinnati Reds in 1932. . . . P Ben McDonald (started six games as a 6-6 freshman forward for Louisiana State in 1986-87) picked first overall by the Baltimore Orioles in the 1989 amateur draft. . . . Closer Lee Smith (averaged 3.4 ppg and 1.9 rpg with Northwestern State in 1976-77) fans four of the last five Pittsburgh Pirates batters to earn the save for the Chicago Cubs in a 3-1 victory in 1983.
4 - Elden Auker (All-Big Six Conference first five selection with Kansas State in 1931-32), supported by an inside-the-park homer from player/manager Mickey Cochrane (Boston University player in early 1920s) during a 10-run third inning, was the winning pitcher in an 18-9 decision over the Philadelphia Athletics. . . . 1B Tony Clark (San Diego State's leading scorer in WAC games in 1991-92) selected by the Detroit Tigers in first round (2nd pick overall) in 1990 amateur draft. . . . Cleveland Indians OF Larry Doby (reserve guard for Virginia Union's 1943 CIAA titlist) hit for the cycle against the Boston Red Sox in 1952. . . . Pinch-hitter Harvey Hendrick (Vanderbilt letterman in 1918) hammered a two-out, bases-loaded triple in the ninth inning to spark the Cleveland Indians to an 11-10 verdict over the St. Louis Browns in 1925. . . . P Jim Konstanty (Syracuse player in late 1930s) signed by the St. Louis Cardinals in 1956 after he was released by the New York Yankees. . . . Los Angeles Dodgers P Sandy Koufax (Cincinnati's freshman squad in 1953-54) became the fourth hurler to toss three no-hitters, blanking the N.L.-leading Philadelphia Phillies, 3-0, in 1964. . . . 1B-OF Preston Ward (second-leading scorer for Southwest Missouri State in 1946-47 and 1948-49) traded by the Chicago Cubs to the Pittsburgh Pirates in a 10-player swap in 1953. . . . New York Yankees OF Dave Winfield (starting forward with Minnesota's first NCAA playoff team in 1972) homered twice in an 11-0 victory over the California Angels in 1986.
3 - Chicago Cubs 2B Glenn Beckert (three-year basketball letterman for Allegeny, MA) drove in P Ken Holtzman with the only run of the game in Holtzman's no-hitter against the Cincinnati Reds in 1971. . . . New York Giants SS Alvin Dark (letterman for LSU and USL during World War II) scored five runs in a 13-8 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in 1954. . . . OF Cameron Drew (NECC first-team selection in 1984-85 when he led New Haven, CT, in scoring and rebounding) selected by Houston Astros in first round (12th pick overall) in 1985 amateur draft. . . . 1B Walt Dropo (Connecticut's first player ever to average 20 points for a season with 21.7 ppg in 1942-43) traded by the Boston Red Sox to the Detroit Tigers in a nine-player swap in 1952. . . . Overweight P George Earnshaw (competed with Swarthmore, PA, squad in 1922) fined by Philadelphia Athletics owner/manager Connie Mack in 1933. . . . OF Hoot Evers (starter for Illinois in 1939-40) traded by the Detroit Tigers to the Boston Red Sox in a nine-player swap in 1952. . . . In 1983, George Bamberger stepped down as manager of the New York Mets and is succeeded by Frank Howard (two-time All-Big Ten Conference first-team selection when he led Ohio State in scoring and rebounding in 1956-57 and 1957-58). . . . In 1978, Philadelphia Phillies 2B Davey Johnson (averaged 1.7 ppg with Texas A&M in 1961-62) became the first MLB player to hit two pinch-hit grand slams in a single season. . . . P Dave Lemanczyk (participated in NCAA Division II Tournament in 1970 and 1971 with Hartwick, NY) traded by the Toronto Blue Jays to the California Angels in 1980. . . . P Dennis Rasmussen (sixth-man for Creighton averaged 5.1 ppg in three seasons from 1977-78 through 1979-80) selected in first round (17th pick overall) by the California Angels in 1980 amateur draft.
2 - 2B Jerry Adair (one of Oklahoma State's top three scorers in 1956-57 and 1957-58 while ranking among the nation's top 12 free-throw shooters each season) traded by the Chicago White Sox to the Boston Red Sox for reliever Don McMahon in 1967 and wound up playing in the World Series that year against the St. Louis Cardinals. . . . In 1951, 1B Walt Dropo (Connecticut's first player ever to average 20 points for a single season with 21.7 ppg in 1942-43) demoted by the Boston Red Sox to the minors to regain his form after he was A.L. Rookie of the Year the previous campaign. . . . Los Angeles Dodgers 2B Davey Lopes (NAIA All-District 15 selection for Iowa Wesleyan averaged 16.9 ppg as a freshman in 1964-65 and 12.1 ppg as a sophomore in 1965-66) tied a MLB mark by committing three errors in the first inning of a 6-3 setback against the Montreal Expos in 1973. . . . Chicago White Sox P Ted Lyons (two-time All-SWC first-team selection for Baylor in the early 1920s) tossed a shutout (6-0 against the Boston Red Sox in opener of a 1940 doubleheader), notching his 225th career victory. . . . C Cal Neeman (Illinois Wesleyan's leading scorer in 1947-48 and 1948-49) purchased from the St. Louis Cardinals by the Cleveland Indians in 1963. . . . P Matt Thornton (averaged 5.8 ppg and 2.4 rpg for Grand Valley State, MI, from 1995-96 through 1997-98) selected by Seattle Mariners in first round (22nd pick overall) in 1998 amateur draft.
1 - OF Danny Litwhiler (member of JV basketball squad with Bloomsburg, PA, three years in mid-1930s) traded by Philadelphia Phillies to St. Louis Cardinals in 1943. . . . Philadelphia Phillies 1B Len Matuszek (starter for Toledo's 18-7 team in 1975-76) failed to notch a putout in a 12-3 defeat against the Chicago Cubs in 1984. . . . St. Louis Cardinals OF Wally Moon (averaged 4.3 ppg with Texas A&M in 1948-49 and 1949-50) had his 24-game hitting streak end against the Milwaukee Braves in 1957. . . . P Bob Veale (scored 1,160 points with Benedictine, KS, from 1955-56 through 1957-58) amassed 16 strikeouts in shutting out the Philadelphia Phillies, 4-0, for the Pittsburgh Pirates' 12th consecutive victory in 1965.
Oddly, some schools such as East Tennessee State and Virginia Military are going full circle and returning to a league (Southern Conference) where they previously were members. They join the following institutions that re-enlisted with a conference after leaving for various durations:
|School||DI Conference (Membership Tenure)||School Status During Interim|
|Boise State||Big West (1997-2001 and will rejoin in 2014)||WAC (2002-11) and Mountain West (2012 and 2013)|
|Campbell||Big South (1986-94 and since 2012)||TAAC/Atlantic Sun (1995-2011)|
|Charlotte||Conference USA (1996-2005 and wll rejoin in 2014)||Atlantic 10 (2006-13)|
|Creighton||Missouri Valley (1929-48 and since 1978)||Independent|
|Davidson||Southern (1937-88 and since 1993)||Big South (1991 and 1992)|
|Drake||Missouri Valley (1908-51 and since 1957)||Independent|
|Duquesne||Eastern 8/Atlantic 10 (since 1977 except for 1993)||Midwestern Collegiate (1993)|
|East Tennessee State||Southern (1980-2005 and since 2015)||Ohio Valley (1959-78)/Atlantic Sun (2006-14)|
|Georgia State||Sun Belt (1977-81 and will rejoin in 2014)||TAAC/Atlantic Sun (1985-2005) and CAA (2006-13)|
|Harvard||EIBL/Ivy League (1902-09 and since 1934)||Independent|
|Lamar||Southland (1969-87 and since 1999)||American South (1988-91) and Sun Belt (1992-98)|
|Murray State||Ohio Valley (since 1949 except for 1962)||Independent|
|New Orleans||Sun Belt (1977-80 and 1992-2010)||Independent and American South (1988-91)|
|Northern Illinois||Mid-American (1976-86 and since 1998)||Mid-Continent (1991-94) and Midwestern Collegiate (1995-97)|
|Oregon||Pacific Coast (1916-59 and since 1965)||Independent|
|Oregon State||Pacific Coast (1916-59 and since 1965)||Independent|
|Pacific||WCAC/West Coast (1953-71 and will rejoin in 2014)||PCAA/Big West (1972-2013)|
|Penn State||Eastern 8/Atlantic 10 (1977-79 and 1983-91)||Independent|
|Prairie View A&M||SWAC (since 1921 except for 1991)||Discontinued program one season|
|Virginia Military||Southern (1926-2003 and since 2015)||Big South (2004-14)|
|Washington State||Pacific Coast (1917-59 and since 1964)||Independent|
There are occasions when we freely recall the full spectrum of players ranging from knuckleheads to knuckle-down heads of corporations. A Memorial Day weekend generates sobering reminders of what is really important to our freedom. College basketball contributions include the following individuals:
Baylor has developed a reputation the past couple of seasons for having some "soft" players who played with the fervor of a man holding his female companion's purse at the mall much of a shopping excursion afternoon. But Baylor is believed to be the only non-service academy in America to have two former athletes go on to win the Congressional Medal of Honor. Both men, Jack Lummus and John "Killer" Kane, earned the nation's highest military honor for heroics in World War II. Lummus played football, basketball and baseball for the Bears from 1938 through 1941. He was an All-Southwest Conference center fielder before signing with the NFL's New York Giants.
After one year of pro football, Lummus joined the U.S. Marines and was a platoon leader in the initial days of fighting on Iwo Jima. While leading a charge on enemy positions, Lummus stepped on a land mine and lost both legs. Despite heavy bleeding, he led his platoon to knock out several pockets of Japanese fire, a vital part of the U.S. victory. Alas, Lummus died of his wounds shortly after the battle.
Kane, who also played football and basketball, was one of the survivors on Baylor's ill-fated 1927 basketball squad that lost 10 of its 21-member traveling party in a bus-train wreck en route to Austin, Tex. As a result of the "Immortal Ten" tragedy, the remainder of the first of coach Ralph Wolf's 15 seasons was cancelled, and the first highway overpass in Texas was constructed.
Kane joined the Army Air Corps in 1932 and soon became a bomber commander of legendary proportions. It was said he was the best pilot and toughest commander in the Air Corps. It was often debated who feared him more - the Germans or his own men.
On August 1, 1943, Kane led what at the time was the deadliest air battle in history - a low-level, long-range bombing raid on Hitler's oil-refining complex in Rumania. The site produced a major portion of the Axis' fuel and was one of the most heavily-guarded locations in history.
The heroism exhibited by ex-hoopsters doesn't stop there. Al Brown, Creighton's leading scorer in 1925-26, survived the infamous Bataan Death March in the Philippines. Ex-players warranting salutes for making the supreme sacrifice include:
Kentucky players who competed multiple years for the Wildcats before they were killed during WWII included Mel Brewer (Army second lieutenant/died in France), Ken England (Army captain of ski troop/Italy), James Goforth (Marine first lieutenant/Marshall Islands) and Jim King (Army second lieutenant and co-pilot/Germany). Brewer, England and King were three of the top seven scorers for UK's first NCAA Tournament and Final Four team in 1942.
Bob "Ace" Calkins, UCLA's top scorer in the late 1930s before Jackie Robinson arrived, was navigator on an airplane ("The Flying Fortress") gunned down during WWII. He later died in an Italian prison camp from wounds suffered in the crash.
Colorado A&M's Lewis "Dude" Dent, voted the best all-around athlete in the Mountain States Conference in 1943, was an Army lieutenant among forward observers giving firing coordinates on the radio when killed in action in France in August 1944.
Montana State's Cyrus Gatton, a pilot with the 11th Areo Squadron, was killed in action in Europe the first week in November 1918, a week before the Armistice was signed ending World War I.
Eddie Grant, who played basketball for Harvard at the turn of the 20th Century before becoming an infielder for 10 years in the majors, died from shelling on October 5, 1918, in the Argonne Forest, France, during WWI while in charge of his battalion after his commanding officer was killed.
Thomas P. Hunter, a three-year letterman who was a sophomore member of Kansas' 1940 runner-up, was killed in action against the Japanese on Guam, July 21, 1944, while fighting with the Ninth Marines as a first lieutenant. Hunter was elected posthumously as captain of the Jayhawks' 1945-46 squad that compiled a 19-2 record.
Nile Kinnick, Iowa's Heisman Trophy winner as a quarterback-halfback in 1939, played basketball for the Hawkeyes during his sophomore year, averaging 6.1 ppg to finish as their second-leading scorer. After bypassing pro football to attend law school, he was killed in a plane crash in 1943 while serving in the Navy.
Center Bill Menke, the third-leading scorer for Indiana's 1940 NCAA champion who supplied a team-high 10 points in the Hoosiers' national semifinal victory over Duquesne, later became a Navy pilot and served in World War II. In January 1945, he was declared missing in action (and presumed dead) when he didn't return from a flight in the Caribbean.
Harry "Porky" O'Neill paced Gettysburg (Pa.) to two Eastern Pennsylvania Conference championships in the late 1930s and caught one game for the Philadelphia Athletics in 1939. After surviving the worst of the horrific fighting at Iwo Jima, the Marine first lieutenant was killed instantly on March 6, 1945, by a sniper's bullet piercing his throat and severing his spinal cord as he prepared to bed down on a starlit night.
San Diego State's Milton "Milky" Phelps, the NAIA Tournament's first bona fide standout when he sparked the Aztecs to the 1941 title after two runner-up finishes, gave his life for his country during WWII in the crash of a Navy torpedo bomber.
Robert Roach, a member of Omaha's squad before entering the military, was a second lieutenant in the Army Air Forces in July 1945 when he died in the crash of his plane in Arizona, where he was an instructor.
Carleton (MN) forward Wayne Sparks, a "Little All-American" in 1936-37, died in a bomber crash during WWII.
Four-time All-MCAU forward Eugene "Peaches" Westover, class of '38 for Drury (MO), was killed January 1, 1945, at the Battle of the Bulge.
Numerous standout players had their college playing careers sidetracked by WWII. Following is a list of All-Americans who had their college days interrupted in the mid-1940s while serving in the U.S. Armed Forces:
Army - Don Barksdale (UCLA), Lew Beck (Oregon State), A.L. Bennett (Oklahoma A&M), Gale Bishop (Washington State), Vince Boryla (Notre Dame/Denver), Harry Boykoff (St. John's), Bob Brannum (Kentucky), Arnie Ferrin (Utah), Alex Groza (Kentucky), Ralph Hamilton (Indiana), Walt Kirk (Illinois), Allie Paine (Oklahoma), Don Rehfeldt (Wisconsin), Jack Smiley (Illinois), Odie Spears (Western Kentucky) and Gerry Tucker (Oklahoma).
Navy - Bobby Cook (Wisconsin), Howie Dallmar (Stanford/Penn), Dick Dickey (North Carolina State), Bob Faught (Notre Dame), Harold Gensichen (Western Michigan), Wyndol Gray (Bowling Green State), Hal Haskins (Hamline), Leo Klier (Notre Dame), Dick McGuire (St. John's) and John Oldham (Western Kentucky).
In an incredible achievement, Phillip and Tucker returned to first-team All-American status in 1946-47 after missing three seasons while serving in the military. Black and Sailors also returned to All-American acclaim after missing two seasons. Meanwhile, Whitey Skoog served in the U.S. Navy before becoming a three-time All-American with Minnesota in the late 1940s and early 1950s.
Gus Broberg, an aviator with the Marines after being named an NCAA consensus first-team All-American for Dartmouth in 1940 and 1941, lost his right arm in a plane crash. He went on to study law and become a respected judge in Florida.
Fallen heroes also emerged post-WWII. Don Holleder, who averaged 9.3 ppg as a junior and 6.8 ppg as a senior for Army in the mid-1950s, was a major during the Vietnam War in October, 1967, when he was killed by a sniper's bullet in an ambush 40 miles from Saigon as he hurled himself into enemy fire attempting to rescue wounded comrades.
We honor and remember after they went from the playing field to battlefield!
Junior college recruit Malik Smith, one of the nation's premier three-point shooters last season for Florida International, plans to join coach Richard Pitino at Minnesota. Smith is immediately eligible because of FIU's anemic academic progress under Pitino's predecessor (Isaiah Thomas). Other comparable tag-along transfer guards who could make an impact in 2013-14 are Brent Arrington (followed Sean Woods from Mississippi Valley State to Morehead State) and Nic Moore (followed coach-in-waiting Tim Jankovich from Illinois State to SMU). Following is an alphabetical list of prominent players who transferred from one major college to another with the same head coach although he wasn't his father:
*Erdmann played for a junior college between four-year school stints.
NOTES: Aaman committed to Wagner before choosing to enroll with Hurley at Rhode Island, Fisher signed with Pepperdine but never played there before choosing to follow Romar to SLU, Kilgore never played for EMU after transferring there from Central Michigan, Lyons was an academic partial qualifier in 2008-09 and Pendleton signed with Iowa but never played for the Hawkeyes because of scholastic shortcomings. . . . Mitchell played two seasons at Fresno State under Grant's successor (Ron Adams). . . . Varner went on an LDS Mormon mission for two years between stints at Pepperdine and Saint Louis.
"You don't choose your family. They are God's gift to you, as you are to them." - Desmond Tutu
At first glance, it seems somewhat ridiculous for a power conference school such as Indiana to offer a scholarship to an eighth-grader (Eron Gordon) last year. But that is before examining his family tree. His father, Eric Sr., averaged 14.1 points per game with Liberty from 1981-82 through 1983-84, leading the Flames in scoring as a senior with 18.1 ppg before the school moved up to the NCAA Division I level later in the decade. Oldest brother Eric Jr. led the Big Ten Conference in scoring as a freshman All-American in his lone season with IU in 2007-08 before moving on to the NBA. Older brother Evan was named to the Big South Conference All-Freshman team with Liberty in 2009-10 before becoming an all-league second-team selection as a sophomore prior to transferring to Arizona State and now moving on again to Eric Jr.'s old stomping grounds. If Evan and Eron live up to billing, the Gordons could become one of the most influential families in college basketball history.
In the meantime, hoopdom's "Focus on the Family" will concentrate on the Plumlees and Grants. If youngest brother Marshall Plumlee overcomes his foot problems and improves as much as Duke siblings Mason and Miles, they could combine with their father, former Tennessee Tech frontcourter Perky, to comprise one of most dynamic family units. Mason became the Blue Devils' go-to plumb line to keep them on the straight and narrow last season after forgoing leaving school early for the NBA. The following legacy list is likely to change next year because of Grant's Army as the former Oklahoma All-American Harvey Grant has a couple more sons in the ACC - Jerian (Notre Dame) and Jerami (Syracuse) - after eldest Jerai competed with Clemson.
Until we have a final reading on the Gordons, Grants and Plumlees, following are 10 of the top nuclear-power families. The "HoopDaddys" comprised of college players who had at least three sons also go on to compete in a significant way at a similar level include:
BARRY BARRY GOOD
1. Barry - Father Rick Barry, a first-team All-American as a senior when he led the nation in scoring, averaged 29.8 ppg and 16.5 rpg for Miami (FL) from 1962-63 through 1964-65. Son Scooter averaged 3.3 ppg for Kansas' 1988 NCAA titlist before leading the Jayhawks with 5.7 apg the next season. Son Jon, a junior college transfer, averaged 14.4 ppg, 3.6 rpg and 4.5 apg for Pacific and Georgia Tech in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Son Brent averaged 12.1 ppg, 3.7 rpg and 3.3 apg for Oregon State from 1991-92 through 1994-95. Son Drew, an All-ACC second-team selection as a senior, averaged 10.7 ppg, 4.1 rpg and 6.2 apg for Georgia Tech from 1992-93 through 1995-96, leading the ACC in assists each of his last three seasons. Son Canyon redshirted as a freshman with the College of Charleston in 2011-12. Jon, an All-ACC third-team selection as a junior in 1991-92, and Brent, an All-Pacific-10 Conference choice as a senior, were late bloomers who went on to have productive NBA careers. Rick, Jon and Brent were NBA first-round draft choices while Drew was a second-round pick. Bruce Hale, Rick's father-in-law and a Santa Clara alumnus, coached him at Miami (FL) after playing five years in the NBA.
WALTON MOUNTAIN GANG
2. Walton - Father Bill Walton, a three-time national player of the year, averaged 20.3 ppg and 15.7 rpg for UCLA from 1971-72 through 1973-74. Son Adam lettered with LSU before incurring a rest-of-season suspension in Dale Brown's final year as coach in 1996-97 and subsequently transferring to a small college in California. Son Nate was an All-Ivy League first-team selection for Princeton as a senior in 2000-01, becoming the fourth player in school history with two seasons of at least 100 assists. Son Luke, a two-time All-Pacific-10 Conference choice, averaged 9.1 ppg, 5.1 rpg and 4.5 apg for Arizona from 1999-2000 through 2002-03. Son Chris finished among the top 15 in the Mountain West Conference in assists and rebounding as a junior in 2003-04 for San Diego State, finishing his four-year career with averages of 5.1 ppg and 3.4 rpg.
PRICE IS RIGHT CONTROL
3. Price - Father Dennis Price, an All-Big Eight Conference second-team selection as a junior, averaged 10.9 ppg for Oklahoma from 1957-58 through 1959-60. Son Mark, a three-time All-ACC first-team selection and All-American, averaged 17.4 ppg and 4 apg for Georgia Tech from 1982-83 through 1985-86. Son Matt scored 23 points in 18 games as a freshman for Appalachian State in 1984-85. Son Brent, an All-Big Eight Conference first-team selection as a senior, averaged 18 ppg and 5.8 apg for Oklahoma in 1990-91 and 1991-92 after transferring from South Carolina, where he averaged 12.6 ppg and 3.5 apg in 1987-88 and 1988-89.
HIGH ON HAARLOW
4. Haarlow - Father Bill Haarlow Jr., a three-time All-Western Conference selection for the University of Chicago from 1933-34 through 1935-36, was the league's third-leading scorer as a sophomore (9.9 ppg), leading scorer as a junior (13) and second-leading scorer as a senior (12.6). He had three sons play for Princeton in the 1960s - A. William III averaged 10.8 ppg and 5 rpg in 1962-63, Bob averaged 8.5 ppg and 4.4 rpg from 1963-64 through 1965-66 (second-leading scorer for the Tigers' 1965 Final Four team as a teammate of All-American Bill Bradley) and John averaged 12.6 ppg and 7.3 rpg from 1965-66 through 1967-68 (All-Ivy League second-team selection as a junior). With Bill Jr. cited on CollegeHoopedia.com's comprehensive list of all-time All-Americans, the Haarlows might have been the initial most impactful family on the sport.
5. Paterno - Father Bill Paterno averaged 3.4 ppg with St. Francis (N.Y.) in 1948-49 and 1949-50 after scoring 18 points in nine games in 1947-48. Son Billy averaged 9.8 ppg and 4.7 rpg for Notre Dame from 1973-74 through 1976-77 under coach Digger Phelps, finishing team runner-up in scoring to All-American Adrian Dantley as a sophomore with 13.3 ppg. Son Mike averaged 3.1 ppg for Monmouth in 1987-88. Son Joe averaged 14.6 ppg and 5.1 rpg with Fordham from 1985-86 through 1988-89, leading the Rams in scoring in three seasons and finishing his career as their all-time second-leading scorer. Son Steve averaged 10.8 ppg and 3.6 rpg with Marist from 1987-88 through 1990-91, leading the Red Foxes in scoring as a junior before finishing runner-up as a senior.
TOASTING THE RAIVIOS
6. Raivio - Father Rick Raivio, a three-time All-WCAC selection who led Portland in field-goal shooting all four seasons, finished as the Pilots' all-time leading rebounder (910/9.4 rpg) while averaging 17.2 ppg before becoming a fifth-round draft choice by the Los Angeles Lakers. Son Derek, the WCC co-player of the year as a senior (18 ppg and nation-leading 96.1 FT%), averaged 11.5 ppg and 2.8 apg while shooting 41.6% from beyond the arc from 2003-04 through 2006-07 with Gonzaga en route to becoming the #2 all-time free-throw shooter in DI history (92.7%). Son Nik, a J.C. recruit, was an All-WCC selection as a junior with Portland in 2008-09 when he averaged 16 ppg and 6.5 rpg before heading overseas to play professionally after finishing his Pilots' career with 14.3 ppg and 5.3 rpg. Son Matt was averaging 11.6 ppg and 4.1 rpg for Simon Fraser (Vancouver) in mid-season in 2011-12 after transferring from Santa Rosa (CA) JC.
ROCKY MOUNTAIN HIGH
7. Pollard - Father Pearl Pollard (6-9), a second-team All-Skyline Conference choice as a senior, averaged 10.5 ppg and 7.9 rpg for Utah from 1956-57 through 1958-59 with three national postseason tournament teams, leading the Utes in scoring and rebounding as a senior. Son Carl, 7-2, played briefly for BYU as a freshman in 1983-84 before redshirting in 1984-85, going on a two-year Mormon mission and transferring with a brother to Southern California, where he didn't play prior to competing with Southern Utah in 1989-90 and averaging 1.5 ppg and 2.9 rpg. Son Alan, 6-9, averaged 5.6 ppg and 5.3 rpg while splitting four seasons between Brigham Young and USC from 1984-85 through 1988-89, leading BYU in rebounding as a freshman. Son Mark, 6-11, played briefly for San Diego State in 1990-91 before also leaving at the same time with a brother. Son Neal, 7-0, redshirted at San Diego State in 1988-89 before going on a Mormon mission to New England, playing three games with the Aztecs in 1991-92 and transferring to Utah State, where he didn't play. Son Scot, 6-11, averaged 9.4 ppg, 6.6 rpg and 1.7 bpg for four Kansas teams reaching NCAA playoff regional semifinals from 1993-94 through 1996-97 before becoming an NBA first-round draft choice.
CAN'T FOIL THE DOYLES
8. Doyle - Father Dan Doyle averaged 13.7 ppg and 12.2 rpg for Belmont Abbey (N.C.) in his four-year career. He was selected by the Detroit Pistons in 5th round of 1961 NBA draft (44th pick overall) after pacing Al McGuire-coached teams in scoring average his final three seasons and rebounding as a junior and senior. Son Danny averaged 7.4 ppg and 2.1 rpg with Iona from 1989-90 through 1993-94, leading the Gaels in assists and steals as a senior. Son Joe led then-DII Sacred Heart in scoring, assists and steals as a senior in 1996-97. Son Tim played sparingly for St. John's in 2002-03 before transferring to Northwestern, where he averaged 8.1 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 3.7 apg and 1.3 spg from 2004-05 through 2006-07, leading the Wildcats in assists his last two seasons and in steals as a senior.
HUGGY BEARS ALL
9. Huggins - Father Charlie Huggins was an All-WVIAC first-team selection for Alderson-Broaddus (W. Va.) in 1957-58 after transferring from West Virginia. Son Bob averaged 8.4 ppg and 2.8 rpg while shooting 45.9% from the floor and 79.4% from the free-throw line with West Virginia in the mid-1970s after transferring from Ohio University. Son Harry was a two-year letterman for Texas Lutheran in the late 1970s after transferring from Rice. Son Larry averaged 5.6 ppg, 2 rpg and 2.1 apg while shooting 46.3% from the floor and 79.3% from the free-throw line as a captain for Ohio State in the early 1980s.
WE AND PAPA McGEE
10. McGee - Father Anthony McGee led Long Beach State in scoring in 1975-76 with 14.8 ppg before contributing 4.5 ppg for the 49ers' NCAA playoff team the next season. Son Tony averaged 4 ppg for Eastern Washington in 1997-98 and 1998-99. Son Antoine averaged 1.4 ppg and 1.7 apg with Colorado from 2002-03 through 2005-06. Son Andre averaged 5.2 ppg and 1.8 apg while shooting 36.5% from beyond the arc with Louisville from 2005-06 through 2008-09, leading the Cardinals in three-point field-goal shooting as a junior (39.4%).
HONORABLE MENTION: FIFE AND DRUM CORPS
Fife - Father Dan Fife, a 10th-round draft choice by the Milwaukee Bucks before pitching briefly for the Minnesota Twins, averaged 12.6 ppg and 4.9 rpg for Michigan from 1968-69 through 1970-71. Son Dugan averaged 4.6 ppg and 2 rpg for Michigan from 1992-93 through 1995-96. Son Jeremy led Grand Valley State (MI) in assists in 1996-97 and 1997-98. Son Dane averaged 5.6 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 2.3 apg and 1.4 spg while shooting 38.2% from three-point range for Indiana from 1998-99 through 2001-02.
What difference does it make? The second term of a president, resembling life, is like a roll of toilet paper when you're ill. The closer you get to the end, the faster the _ _ _ _ goes. Held hostage by an Ariel Castro-like media as manipulative as Jodi Arias, the general public suffers from gullible glorification syndrome. Whatever political position you're in when the _ _ _ _ hits the fan, you just hope the grandstanding "phony scandal" leader of the free world exhibits more backbone than someone raised by an Indonesian nanny who subsequently joined a group of transvestites called the Dancing Dolls.
Unwilling to dance around the topic, a problem persists that the overwhelming majority of slanted reporters chronicling events big and small, including the toy department (sports), write through a liberal prism insulting our common sense and intelligence. Thus the toughest question President Barack Obama faced in a given year from the malpractice minions probably was an ESPN bracket racket inquiry concerning whether his alma mater (Harvard) was going to advance to the second round in NCAA basketball playoff competition. How often did ESPN saps indulge themselves with "Audacity of Hype" presidential picks promoting the NCAA tourney that didn't exactly provide "fair share" equal time from the opposing party? Let me be clear: Don't you wish the media would have "encouraged" him to put as much effort into meeting a budget deadline as he did in providing a bracket, accepting mulligan lessons from Tiger, hosting parties at Club Obama or going on a wildly-expensive "entitlement" trip to Africa? If not relevant items, couldn't they at least ask him: "What's the deal with your ears?"
What difference does it make? Well, when the lame-stream sports media is as incompetent as the general newsroom and editorial department, they foist heroes upon us such as Lance Armstrong, Ryan Braun, Aaron Hernandez, Ben Johnson, Marion Jones, O.J. Simpson, A-Roid, Manti Te'o and Michael Vick. In basketball specifically, hoop media sycophants canonize tattooed Louisville coach Rick Pitino not long after his repulsive restaurant-closing porn-star tryout and Jimmy V is hailed endlessly in history rewrites despite coach Valvano having two different schools - Iona and North Carolina State - vacate NCAA playoff participation. As if enthralled with Pitino catching an enormous marlin and being featured on Maker's Mark bourbon bottles isn't enough, the inept media's latest touchy-feely attempt in social engineering is trying to elevate Jason Collins to Jackie Robinson-like status.
Collins was cited as a "star" by sports know-nothing ABC anchor-ette Diane Sawyer. Was Collins embellished as celestial because he averaged 1.1 points and 1.6 rebounds per game this season, 1.2 ppg and 1.6 rpg over the last two seasons, 1.5 ppg and 1.8 rpg the last three seasons, 1.4 ppg and 1.6 rpg the last four NBA seasons or because he fits nicely into smug Sawyer's social world view the last four years as Charles Gibson's truth-telling successor? At least sanctimonious Sawyer showed her expertise in softball(s) with hot-air inquiries to Syrian dictator Bashar Assad about iPods and video games.
The myopic media, responding like the NSA in the "least untruthful manner," is so focused on accuracy that much of it offers a one-sided depiction of troubled teen Trayvon Martin as a Skittles-loving (not weed-smoking) model citizen who must have innocently been kicked out of his home and school perhaps because he was fond of hanging around full-fledged liars who can't read cursive (eloquent to MSNBC minions) coupled with his flaws including prejudiced thinking that Hispanics (White-Hispanic to appease race hustlers) could become "creepy Crackers." Fueled by hoodie-donning intellectual heavyweights such as the Miami Heat, a reported $1 million-plus wrongful death settlement with a homeowners association was a "justice" byproduct of the demise of the parents' son apparently enamored with a "Gangsta" culture.
Of course, it's all about just one side of the political spectrum getting along with the other to the Amen progressive "pew" from politically-correct pundits plus gaily being who you are in a permissive society. What a stunner that Collins was promptly slated to join first lady Michelle Obama at a high-fiving Democratic fundraiser between her vacation junkets saving taxpayer resources by going on a separate flight from her husband. But this fundraiser is a genuine political spontaneous reaction! Will Collins courageously dwell on the No. 98, which is about the number of months he fraudulently strung his fiancée along (see Cosmopolitan feature on fellow Stanford product Carolyn Moos)?
What difference does it make? By any measure, the puff-piece enemies of illumination failed to fully vett Obama and his leftist fantasies before he became POTUS other than perhaps focusing on an alleged hoop prowess. But as NBA Commissioner David Stern said in jest about Obama's basketball background: "He thinks he's better than he really is." Although probably not intentional, Stern's dispassionate assessment also summarizes Obama's presidency. At the risk of being the next U.S. citizen subject to a drone strike, it should be emphasized that, when you don't toe the fictional party line of the high-and-mighty real sideshow, you become a demoted diplomat, face intimidation tactics having your phone records seized or are targeted by going on the abuse-of-power IRS enemies list (a/k/a "horrible customer service"). Astonishingly, the staging-question IRS is "used" as a staging area by West Wing wackos to drive Obamacare down our throats via the same wily _itch with no integrity but plenty of bonus money. While the disgraced I-R-ME$$ official is on paid vacation ("administrative leave") after she previously harassed the Christian Coalition while with the FEC, someone needs to slow "learn her" by forcing haughty Ms. 5th to take a remedial ethics class commencing with the Golden Rule.
Portraying a murderous attack in Benghazi, Libya, as if it occurred in the same war as the Battle of the Bulge, it might be old news to "stylistic" Out House spokesperson Jay Blarney while the ex-TIME magazine Washington chief does his best zero-credibility imitation of Joseph Goebbels with a "hope and change (the topic)" routine. Seems as if journalistic jewel Jay, who implied the IRS apologized for "not" doing something wrong, and his unprincipled ilk give adult Americans in a tomb for eight months the same shoddy treatment they do a baby in a womb for a similar time frame. But a classic example of the blame game and absence of accountability from the media was when the feds were more concerned with detaining some obscure producer of an anti-Islamic film making light of the prophet Mohammed. At least the dereliction-of-duty dunderheads didn't pull out the workplace-violence or man-made disaster card again during this convenient-truth process.
What difference does it make? Well, the stonewalling Obama Administration - either grossly incompetent or purposefully in "crude and disgusting" fraud - dealt with a terrorist assault on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi by shamelessly standing in front of caskets at an airport hangar (plus the White House press corps, the U.N. and national politically-oriented shows such as Meet the Depressed) offering an orchestrated al-Qaeda on-the-run narrative claiming the nondescript video was responsible for the murder of the American ambassador and three other Americans. Their most despicable act was regurgitating the same outrageous ruse face-to-face to grieving family members while focusing more on securing "second" non-disclosure agreements from survivors. How authentic or outright evil were those narcissistic embraces from Big Balls Biden and fellow fatal finaglers? Any miserable individual who emphasized a movie lie in one-on-one conversations with mourners doesn't possess the dignity worthy of setting foot on White House grounds with a pooper scooper.
Incredibly, a Navy SEAL among the deceased violated stand-down orders to help save numerous individuals at the death-trap embassy and then fought the terrorists for 7 1/2 hours while his pleas for backup at a nearby annex were ignored by government officials real-time watching events unfold. Weeks later, the evasive apologist-in-chief and cowardly cronies were still striving to supply a cogent response to their deflect-and-deny sacrificial-lamb inaction all for the sake of propping up progressive policies. Where's a photo of the vaunted Obama Team deliberating at least 7 1/2 minutes during the Benghazi attack? Was Mr. Teleprompter even there at all to provide any input possibly "sending in the cavalry"? Bracing for a cross-country campaign trip, did malingerer "That's Not What We Do" go to bed while brave Americans were savaged or is it indeed "an irrelevant fact" less important than raising funds in Las Vegas? If not, then be transparent enough to at least conduct a stand-up, man-up press conference detailing what you did do during the "acting stupidly" stand-down. The Sgt. Schultz "I know nothing!" ploy isn't very becoming for an infallible commander-in-chief as it spills over to the FBI and all of the terribly-flawed feet-of-clay mercenary solders surrounding him with their evolving web of deceit.
Infected by pop culture, reality shows, Al Bore's global-warming hoax and thrills going up noxious newscasters legs, the average shallow American dwells on Angelina Jolie's mammary glands, forlorn Amanda Knox's knife collection, Hollyweird and Gitmo hunger strikers but can't spell Benghazi or even know which continent it's located. When not exploiting children as human shields for an assortment of altruistic motives, POTUS didn't mind hiding behind Hillary Clinton's pants suit via a YouTube film fabrication as her State Department lawyer told witnesses not to speak to House investigators. If you had a family member in dire straits pleading for help, would you rather summon support from Barack Hussein Obama, Hillary's hubris or Tyrone Woods? Hitting closer to home in raw terms, who would you rather have as a neighbor because of comparable ethical and moral values?
What difference does it make? There are ample reasons why the majority of Americans fail to have confidence in a biased mass media to report the news fully, accurately and fairly. The major TV networks and two principal liberal rags (New York Slimes and Washington Compost) refused to give coverage to a Fox News report acknowledging the Obama Administration denied aid multiple times to Americans attacked and murdered by terrorists in Benghazi on September 11 of all days. If they withheld evidence (such as emails from the National Security Advisor's office telling a counter-terrorism unit to stand down), they're as corrupt in a cover-up as the administration's self-righteous Siskel & Ebert wannabees more concerned with monitoring content of "Bible-clinger" prayers, doctoring talking points, collective salvation promotion and muzzling Benghazi survivors (forced to sign non-disclosure agreements) than transparency with the public. And now we have the prospect of the incompetent IRS enforcing Obamacare if its $1 billion investment enrolling "millions" ever functions properly.
A colossal collection of condescending clowns fail to comprehend they work for us; not the other way around. How else do you explain the moral compass of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen See-Soul-less, too busy to testify before Congress but not to attend a gala, failing to help a young girl secure a lung transplant years after the "human servant" prolonged her political life by accepting significant donations in Kansas from an abortion doctor known as Tiller the Baby Killer? Have these pathetic "public servants" any shame or moral compass? This is supposed to be a nation of laws; not of men. Why wasn't there even one honorable IRS employee step forward as a whistleblower about the keep-your-faith-to-yourself agency's targeting of outstanding organizations such as Billy Graham's "mean-spirited" ministries?
Why didn't the lapdog media do its job and press the Benghazi issue providing accountable answers to the many questions accuring about what precisely occurred in the Celebrity-in-Chief's chamber? Even setting aside "fast-and-furious" DOJ activity and disgusting IRS transgressions, why do the vast majority of the media remain so disinterested in pursuing the litany of "jaw-dropping" misstatements and dissembling regarding what was known before and after the Benghazi horror? It wasn't because the misfit media was too busy in Philly prepping for coverage of the chilling capital case carnage in the Dr. Gosnell abortion trial or delving into the abuses of an arrogant in-over-his-head AG and party-animal IRS targeting conservative groups plus a network (Fox) more conservative (conspiratorial to loony leftists) than its counterparts.
What difference does it make? Al Jazeera becomes more objective in its coverage of U.S. politics than incestuous AP (Administration's Press), ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC (More Socialist Nonsense By Commentators) and CNN (Contemptible News Network when moderator Candy Crony became a shameless shill as a virtual member of presidential debate team). In addition to taxpayers underwriting a welfare-receiving terrorist clan in Boston to the tune of more than $100,000 and paying in excess of $300,000 to moronic Major Nidal Hasan while waiting for trial since the felonious Fort Hood shooting, we finance fastidious NPR (National Puke Radio), which is such a gigantic joke that "All Things Considered" aired no Benghazi features the weekend after compelling Congressional testimony but did allot time to "consider" riveting rhino horns trading. It doesn't seem as if the "All Things" mindset has changed much since a former co-host's husband worked for the presidential campaigns of John Kerry and Obama.
Everywhere you turn, there is an immeasurable stain on a presidency similar to the former IRS chief's wife toiling for a leftist campaign finance reform group. Presidents of ABC and NBC News have siblings working at the White House with ties to Benghazi and CNN's deputy bureau chief is married to an aide for Hillary Clinton. NBC News senior political editor Mark Murray is married to an Obama official. All "Rhodes" at CBS lead to the network's prez being the brother of Mr. Accountability's deputy national security adviser and "mind-melding" speechwriter. Then, CBS hired former Obama chief of staff Bill Daley as a contributor. A prime example of the seamless transition for in-the-tank media was Linda Douglass, who became communications director for the Oval Office's Health Reform Office after serving as ABC's chief congressional correspondent. The stench from such BS shouldn't have been surprising insofar as her lawyer/husband was a big fundraiser for BO.
You can't possibly make up all of this conflict-of-interest journalistic junk. The "Let's Move" (in together) even extends into the kitchen where White House chef Sam Kass was engaged to dim-bulb MSLSD host-ette Alex Wagner. Does she get organic-food leftovers from Michelle's gorgeous garden? White House Press Secretary/Carnival Barker Jay Carney's wife is Claire Shipman, a senior national correspondent for ABC. Blatant bias stemming from the "Band of Brothers and Sisters" also includes the Washington Post's justice department reporter married to the general counsel of the Department of Human Services, CNN's deputy Washington bureau chief married to an ex-deputy secretary of state under Clinton, Huffington Post political editor and ex-Newsweek flack Sam Stein's spouse working for White House and NPR's White House correspondent married to a lawyer in the White House counsel's office. The symbolic evacuation from the White House press room because of smoke must have stemmed from deep-background Carney trying to blow smoke up the media's sorry butt with an off-the-record briefing for selected stenographers. Obstructing justice he was sworn to uphold, the phony AG was the next nefarious nabob to deploy a farcical off-the-record stench-fest pussyfooting around behind closed doors.
In an effort to help the buffoonish media shine the light of truth on the Benghazi bungling and scrubbed-a-dozen-times talking points, following are basic "who/what/when/why/where" questions for which the public deserves answers via the president's acolytes:
* Who changed the original talking points and concocted "the (fanciful) spontaneous reaction" to a YouTube video explanation for the attack (framed before the final two deaths) and did the same individual help orchestrate a coordinated response at various venues in the days and weeks immediately following said attack?
* What portion of the entire 7 1/2 hours of the attack did POTUS himself spend in the Situation Room and was he directly involved with multiple "stand-down" orders while the attacks were in place? Perhaps he was too busy playing Spades again with body man Reggie Love.
* When precisely did POTUS and/or his national security staff first become aware that an attack was underway at the Benghazi compound?
* Why was the Obama Administration's response so lax despite an unmanned drone providing real-time live video feed of the scene?
* Where is evidence of the "Betray Us" administration's responses to repeated pleas to strengthen security for Americans in Libya, not only from the State Department security chief and man on the ground in charge of security, but from the ambassador?
In the previous election cycle, NBC's slobbering Brian "Save the Tin Foil" Williams, the self-proclaimed patriot, was fond of displaying adoring news magazine "halo" covers to Obama and then asking him if his mother would have liked the image. Since Williams is in dire need of a drool bucket, perhaps one of his counterparts who isn't certified Obama Orgasmic should brandish photos of the murdered Americans in front of POTUS and ask him if he sleeps well at night knowing the Messiah did everything humanly possible before and during the attack to protect and help these hero sons of steadfast mothers. The Drone Ranger could also be asked what did give-me-a-break trusted "comrade" Shrillary Rotten mean when the former Secretary of State callously said during testimony: "What difference does it make?" Insofar as she wasn't interviewed by the less-than-thorough accountability review board, the difference could be a little honesty with the country's citizens vs. cover-up deception with much of the misguided media serving as corrupt accomplices.
How do you distinguish Dumb from Dumber from Dumbest as the government goofballs reveal they would rather focus their energy on invoking the 5th Amendment by grifters, embracing illegal immigrants, attending line-dancing conferences at taxpayers' expense, underwriting Sandra Flukey's birth control, sanctioning gays in the Boy Scouts, monitoring everyone's phone calls including the Pope, bullying insurance companies to keep them quiet, ordering federal workers to spy on each other and giving Miranda rights to terrorists while profiling patriot, pro-life plus Tea Party affiliates? How about giving the nation one huge "happiness" conference by dismantling the IRS? In a sick version of Obama "care," the media seems as careless in unearthing authentic autopsy results for a virtually defenseless Ambassador Stevens as the administration is in resolutely rendering justice to the incorrigible Islamic perpetrators.
Has the idolatry-practicing media, with fawning NBC planning a mini-series on Hillary Clinton before backing off on the project, contrasted "equal-protection-under-the-law" security measures for Ambassador Stevens compared to her when she went overseas? Did Eleanor Roosevelt give Her Thighness seance insight on baking cookies, covering up a sex and prostitution probe on her watch or how mostly unseen movie trailers incite Muslims? Seemingly, it's always someone else's fault with this self-absorbed crowd, looking as phony as actress Diane Lane playing the role of Shrillary - which is akin to George Clooney playing the role of Dick Vitale. It takes-a-village idiot to believe her crutch, but perhaps it is simply the vast right-wing conspiracy adding to a seemingly never-ending list including Filegate, Sandy Burglar "lifting" National Archives classified documents, Buddhist Templegate, Sick Willie's intern cigar, Travelgate, Vince Foster's suicide, Lippogate, Marc Rich's pardon, Lootergate, wagging the dog, Vandalgate, etc., etc., etc.
The "buck" can't find any place to stop at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Neither the emperor nor his underlings have any clothes or complete candor as the IRS commissioner only remembers one Easter Egg roll among his excessive 157 White House visits. Amid trying to discern State Department protocol during an attack, there was a preposterous assertion from Defense Secretary Leon Panetta that "assets couldn't get there (Benghazi) in time." Is patronizing Panetta also commiserating with an omniscient Eleanor regarding upper-brass orders to save Americans? How did he know with such authority the length of "time" the siege would take as they fought for their lives? Maybe he was too busy on other travel-time matters planning his next cross-country commute home to California at tax-payer expense on military jets. Did this leech-filled leadership just cut their losses and "run" (let them die) rather than risk additional casualties?
What difference does it make? Dan Rather's blather at CBS frequently ended with an inane reference to "courage." Was that a trait exhibited by CBS when it concealed footage for an extended period from a 60 Minutes interview with Obama where he clearly refused to categorize the Benghazi attack as an act of terror? Of course, curious George Stephanopoulos is deemed a journalistic jewel by ABC after earning his spurs as a political hack for the petulant Clintons disparaging one female after another. Eschewing ethics and honor, is this the best and most honest our country can produce in the newsrooms and Oval Office as they stretch the truth as much as excuse-ridden Nanny Pathetic does her face? In helping "inform" the public, all we could expect from the brave "never-seen-you-lose" media was something like: "Will Harvard return to the NCAA Tournament next season?"
The biggest loser over the last couple of election cycles is the mangy media serving as little more than the Praetorian Guard for liberal lunacy praising Planned Parenthood and its accompanying neck-snipping murders of innocent babies while smearing whistleblowers crestfallen over the "abandoned" murders of innocent colleagues. Has an enterprising sports reporter ever evaluated how many abortions have been sanctioned by college basketball coaches so female players could remain on the court and male players wouldn't be hampered by becoming deadbeat dads (see Duke All-American J.J. Redick's abortion contract with a model)? No, not when the men's championship coach has an extortion trial, end-of-the-pack Kentucky Derby horse, limited-edition bourbon bottle, meaningful marlin, favorite son, Lexus dealership and testimonial tattoo to cover.
Americans deserve an honest government covered by a media doing more than just being PRESStitutes for POTUS. Although his publication seemed to always go out of its way to support the Obama Administration, it's a mite unnerving that former Princeton hoopster Richard Stengel seems to make a smooth transition from managing editor of Time magazine to under secretary of state for public diplomacy and public affairs at the State Department. As shamelessly one-sided as conservatives have asserted for years, excessive media malpractice finally discarded the pretense of objectivity. Once and for all, they have been unmasked as aggressive advocates; not adversarial journalists. According to a Gallup poll, fewer than 1/4 of American adults have "a great deal" of confidence in newspapers and television news as red lines behind yellow streaks.
The good news is that the influence-peddling gig for the reprehensible broadcast networks, major daily newspapers and newsweeklies is nearly expired because the less-than-honest brokers are gutless wonders shackled by a business model in free-fall. Whether it's Newsweek, New York magazine, Pro Football Weekly, Spin, The Sporting News, Talk magazine, 30 AOL brands after Huffington Post "gold-digger" merger or debt-ridden dailies, good riddance to the fourth-rate estate and don't let death's door hit you in your contemptible can on the way out! When the putrid press as we know it is put out to pasture (including many sports sandboxes), what difference does it make?
When former All-Americans Adam Morrison (Gonzaga), Jon Scheyer (Duke) and Damon Stoudamire (Arizona) joined the coaching staffs of their alma maters, the thought might have crossed your mind as to what other standout players over the years might have done in the real world after their basketball deflated. If so, CollegeHoopedia.com has conducted extensive research on the real world comings-and-goings of premier players when the ball stopped bouncing. When an All-American such as Hal Lear (Temple) is named to a local Hall of Fame, did you wonder "Whatever Happened to . . . . ?" You'll be surprised at the variety of vocations.
New Texas-Pan American coach Dan Hipsher hopes it's like riding a bike and won't have to shed head coaching cobwebs. Time will tell if Hipsher is rusty, but he was hired by the Broncs after not being a head coach for nine seasons.
Keith Dambrot had been away from NCAA Division I head coaching for 11 years when he succeeded Hipsher as coach at Akron in 2004. Dambrot and Hipsher are among the following six active head coaches who served in non-college head coaching capacities at least nine years before returning to a DI program as bench boss:
|Active Head Coach||Current School||Years Away||Previous DI Position (Tenure)|
|Larry Brown||Southern Methodist||24||Kansas (1984-88)|
|Paul Cormier||Dartmouth||13||Fairfield (1992-98)|
|Keith Dambrot||Akron||11||Central Michigan (1991 and 1992)|
|Todd Bozeman||Morgan State||10||California (1993-96)|
|James Dickey||Houston||nine||Texas Tech (1992-2001)|
|Dan Hipsher||Texas-Pan American||nine||Akron (1996-2004)|
On the second anniversary of ridding Planet Earth of Osama bin Laden, it seems we should be celebrating an authentic hero from the college basketball ranks who was instrumental in tracking him down. But the selfless ex-athlete from a Midwest university hasn't "come out of the closet" for security reasons and might be underground with a fake identification.
In the aftermath of Navy SEAL team 6 dispatching OBL to hell (equivalent status even if satisfying 72 virgins is what transpired), the White House unveiled a photograph of President Barack Obama and his Cabinet inside the Situation Room, watching the daring commando raid unfold on May 1, 2011. But POTUS (Occidential, Calif., JV player) apparently wasn't the tallest ex-college hoopster in the room. Standing just outside the frame of that famous pic was an anonymous Central Intelligence Agency officer ("CIA John") who tracked OBL as a dogmatic deputy chief and reportedly was also influential as one of the principal proponents of drone deterrence. Two days after the world's most-wanted man was transformed into marine treat when dumped into the North Arabian Sea, "CIA John" accompanied then CIA Director Leon Panetta to Capitol Hill, where the Senate Intelligence Committee received a full briefing on the mission.
According to AP accounts at the time, the meticulous senior intelligence analyst was the first individual to put in writing that a legitimate CIA lead had been assembled on possibly locating OBL. He spearheaded the collection of clues for nearly 10 years, leading the agency to a fortified compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, and its epic counterterrorism success. Our freedom-loving nation is eternally grateful that his manhunt accuracy as a deep-cover agent in pinpointing OBL's whereabouts stood in stark contrast to his free-throw marksmanship as a deep-bench player (barely over 30%) as a member of multiple NCAA playoff teams.
A riveting film "Zero Dark Thirty" was a box office hit. The inspiring movie focused on a young female CIA operative, allegedly also from flyover country, showing her tenacity, dedication and courage in primarily monitoring a vital courier for al-Qaeda's upper brass. According to Esquire, the shooter who killed OBL gave the magazine out of his gun as a souvenir to bloodhound "Maya." While the film doesn't do justice to the male super spy, the patriot is likely to defer anyway to the concept "there is no 'I' in team." Naturally, Langley issued a perfunctory "no comment" because concern exists about publishing his name and running biographical details that might make him a target for retribution.
Over the decades, there have been other notable "Secret Agent Men" in the CIA who were former college hoopsters. In fact, a Final Four player isn't required to hit a decisive basket or be selected Most Outstanding Player to be a hero. He doesn't even need to participate on the court. Bob Ames, a member of the Tom Gola-led La Salle teams in 1954 (national champion) and 1955 (runner-up to San Francisco), never got off the bench at the Final Four those two years although he was the only La Salle player to hit more than three-fourths of his free throws the season the Explorers won the NCAA title.
"Our coach, Ken Loeffler, only used seven guys, and Bob was the eighth man," said Frank Blatcher, a starter for the Explorers each season and their leading scorer with a total of 42 points at the Final Four on the championship team. "He had the talent. He just never got a chance to show it."
Ames, a pre-law major who scored a total of eight points in three NCAA playoff games in 1955, did have an opportunity to show his ability in another more vital endeavor, however. He joined the CIA and worked his way up the chain of command to become the Director of the CIA's Office of Analysis of the Near East and South Asia. "The Spy Who Loved Basketball" worked closely with both the Carter and Reagan administrations.
Regrettably, Ames was killed in Beirut in 1983. A truck loaded with TNT on a suicide mission rammed into the facility where Ames was staying while serving as a liaison trying to allay contacts among the Lebanese, Syrians and Israelis in hopes of calming the escalating discord.
"Here was a guy that turned out to have had a greater influence on our lives than just about any 1,000 other basketball players you can name," Blatcher said. "It just shows you that you don't have to be a star to accomplish something." Something like becoming a genuine American hero.
Elsewhere, the CIA's deputy director under George Bush in 1976 was Hank Knoche, the leading scorer in the Mountain States (Big Seven) Conference with 16.4 points per game for Colorado's 1946 NCAA Tournament team. Knoche, the father of former American University coach Chris Knoche, reputedly was the first player selected in the NBA's first college draft in 1947 after enrolling at Washington and Jefferson (Pa.) to play on a 16-4 team with two of his brothers. But he never appeared in the then-fledgling league, which doesn't have any official draft records prior to 1949. The franchise that selected him, the Pittsburgh Ironmen, folded shortly after the draft, and his rights reverted to the New York Knicks.
"I didn't know I was the first No. 1 pick until a writer from Atlanta called me for a story," Knoche said. "An NBA historian had informed him of my alleged status."
The elder Knoche, who went to live in the Denver area, chose not to play in an uncertain situation for little money. "I never received any contact from the Ironmen," he said. "The Knicks sent a contract offer in the mail, but it was for just $3,500 and that's if I made the team (many NBA standouts earn five times that amount every quarter).
"I chose to play industrial basketball, where I remember playing six times one year against seven-footer Bob Kurland (Oklahoma State three-time first-team All-American who never played in the NBA). That wasn't much fun going against Kurland because I was just a 6-4 center."
Knoche was recalled to the military during the Korean War, where he was assigned to intelligence work for the Navy and later embarked on a civilian career leading to a job with the CIA.
In the shadowy world of the CIA, no precise clues exist as to whether a basketball background for "CIA John" contributed to helping POTUS develop a comfort-zone bond with him like other ex-college hoopsters in his inner circle - Secretary of Education Arne Duncan (Harvard), Attorney General Eric Holder (Yale), former "body man" Reggie Love (Duke) and former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mike Mullen (Navy). But it isn't ridiculous to suggest there might not have been a second inauguration for President Obama if he didn't trust "CIA John."
A vital hurdle approving the raid came when the SEAL Squadron leader briefed Mullen on merits of the mission. According to Esquire, Vice Admiral William McRaven, head of Joint Special Ops Command, compared the raid and its fighters to the basketball movie Hoosiers in a final briefing with the participants.
A pithy precept occasionally surfaces in basketball trash talking that "some talk a good game and some play a good game." Depending upon your point of view, Time's Person of the Year in 2011 and/or 2012 should have been "CIA John." Surely, Time managing editor Rick Stengel, a backup for Pete Carril-coached Princeton in the mid-1970s, would have encouraged his colleagues to give "CIA John" special consideration after the White House acknowledged him and his colleagues as "unbelievably competent professionals."
Deserved or not, other ex-college hoopsters may get the bulk of the glory ranging from taking credit for OBL's demise to some searing social issue that actually pales in comparison. When, if ever, will our nation get the opportunity to pay homage to our latest genuine hoop hero? Heaven only knows that we need a real one these days. But at the moment, it will simply be "The Greatest Hoop Story Never Told."
Extra! Extra! Read all about memorable major league baseball achievements and moments involving former college basketball players! Numerous ex-college hoopsters had front-row seats to many of the most notable games, transactions and dates in MLB history. Unless you habitually pore over the content at baseballlibrary.com, baseballreference.com and nationalpastime.com, following is a May calendar involving such versatile athletes:
31 - Buttressed by nine doubles from Pittsburgh Pirates teammates, P Joe Gibbon (two-time All-SEC forward for Ole Miss was the nation's second-leading scorer as a senior in 1956-57) hurled a complete-game, 9-1 victory over the Atlanta Braves in 1961. . . . Pittsburgh Pirates OF Kenny Lofton (Arizona's leader in steals for 1988 Final Four team compiling a 35-3 record) had his 26-game hitting streak end in 2003, falling one contest short of the franchise record.
30 - Boston Red Sox 1B Dale Alexander (starting center for Milligan, TN, in mid-1920s) suffered a career-ending injury in 1933 (therapy for twisted knee sliding into home plate led to third-degree burns, gangrene and near loss of his leg). . . . P Ownie Carroll (Holy Cross basketball letterman in 1922) traded with Harry Rice by the Detroit Tigers in 1930 to the New York Yankees for two members of the legendary 1927 squad featuring Murderers' Row (P Waite Hoyt and SS Mark Koenig). . . . Brooklyn Robins/Dodgers 3B Wally Gilbert (Valparaiso captain in early 1920s) supplied six straight safeties in a doubleheader sweep of the New York Giants in 1931. . . . C Frank Grube (starting guard for Lafayette as a senior in 1926-27), two teammates and Chicago White Sox manager Lew Fonseca involved in a fight with an umpire under the stands after a doubleheader loss at Cleveland in 1932. . . . OF Sam Mele (NYU's leading scorer in 1943 NCAA playoffs) traded by the Washington Senators to the Chicago White Sox in 1952. . . . The Chicago Cubs went 32 games in 1943 before hitting a homer prior to OF Bill Nicholson (played for Washington College, MD, in mid-1930s) knocking a couple of balls beyond the outfield barrier in a 5-1 victory over the Braves. His first of a pair of two-run blasts came in the team's 1,120th at-bat of the season. . . . 1B Jackie Robinson (highest scoring average in Pacific Coast Conference both of his seasons with UCLA in 1939-40 and 1940-41) ripped a 13th-inning homer to give the Brooklyn Dodgers a 2-1 win over the New York Giants in the opener of a 1949 doubleheader.
29 - SS Bill Almon (averaged 2.5 ppg in half a season for Brown's 1972-73 team ending the Bears' streak of 12 straight losing records) traded by the Pittsburgh Pirates to the New York Mets in 1987. . . . Cleveland Indians RF Larry Doby (reserve guard for Virginia Union's 1943 CIAA titlist) hit the first MLB homer over the outer wall at Kansas City's Municipal Stadium in 1955. . . . New York Yankees 1B-OF Buddy Hassett (played for Manhattan teams that won a school-record 17 consecutive games in 1930 and 1931) contributed four hits in a 16-1 rout of Washington in 1942. . . . LF Lou Johnson (Kentucky State teammate of legendary HBCU coach Davey Whitney averaged 5.7 ppg and 2 rpg in 1951-52) swatted two homers in a 5-3 triumph against the Milwaukee Braves in 1965. . . . Chicago White Sox P Howie Judson (Illinois' third-leading scorer in 1944-45) ended a personal streak of 15 straight defeats with a 12-8 relief victory over the St. Louis Browns in 1950. . . . OF Jim Lyttle (led Florida State in free-throw shooting in 1965-66 when he averaged 12.4 ppg) purchased from the Montreal Expos by the New York Mets in 1974. . . . P Christy Mathewson (played for Bucknell at turn of 20th Century) notched a 3-0 shutout over the Boston Braves in 1916, sparking the New York Giants to their 17th triumph in a row (all on the road). . . . P Claude Passeau (played for Millsaps, MS, in late 1920s and early 1930s) traded by the Philadelphia Phillies to the Chicago Cubs in 1939. . . . OF Ray Pepper (Alabama letterman in 1926-27) banged out five hits, including two homers, and drove in five runs to boost the St. Louis Browns to a 12-7 victory over the Detroit Tigers in 1934. . . . Philadelphia Phillies P Eppa Rixey (Virginia letterman in 1912 and 1914) yielded a ninth-inning inside-the-park homer but held on for a 4-3, 13-inning victory against Pittsburgh. It is the only homer Rixey allowed in 301 innings pitched.
28 - P George Earnshaw (competed on Swarthmore, PA, basketball squad in 1922) acquired by the Philadelphia Athletics from Baltimore in 1928. . . . OF David Justice (led Thomas More, KY, in assists in 1984-85) provided a two-run single to spark a ninth-inning rally propelling the Atlanta Braves past the San Diego Padres, 8-6, in 1991. . . . P Ron Reed (Notre Dame's leading rebounder in 1963-64 and 1964-65) traded by the Atlanta Braves to the St. Louis Cardinals in 1975. . . . In 1994, Minnesota Twins OF Dave Winfield (starting forward with Minnesota's first NCAA playoff team in 1972) collected his 3,054th MLB hit, surpassing former Twin Rod Carew into 15th place on the all-time list.
27 - OF Ethan Allen (Cincinnati letterman in 1924-25 and 1925-26) traded by the Cincinnati Reds to the New York Giants in 1930. . . . P Andy Karl (Manhattan letterman in mid-1930s) traded by the Philadelphia Phillies to the Boston Braves in 1947. . . . Closer Lee Smith (averaged 3.4 ppg and 1.9 rpg with Northwestern State in 1976-77) traded by the California Angels to the Cincinnati Reds in 1996. . . . Seattle Mariners OF Randy Winn (Santa Clara backcourtmate of eventual two-time NBA Most Valuable Player Steve Nash in 1993-94) stroked five hits in a 15-7 triumph over the Kansas City Royals in 2003.
26 - P Mike Adams (played for Texas A&M-Kingsville in 1996-97) traded by the Milwaukee Brewers to the New York Mets in 2006. . . . Boston Red Sox P Boo Ferriss (Mississippi State letterman in 1941) hurled a one-hitter against the Chicago White Sox in the opener of a 1946 doubleheader. . . . Lefthander Harvey Haddix of the Pittsburgh Pirates spun a perfect game for 12 innings in 1959 before Milwaukee Braves 1B Joe Adcock (Louisiana State's leading scorer in 1945-46) hit a game-winning homer in the 13th (credited with a double because of a base-running snafu). . . . Los Angeles Dodgers P Sandy Koufax (Cincinnati's freshman squad in 1953-54) fanned 16 Philadelphia Phillies batters in a 1962 game. . . . INF Jerry Lumpe (member of Southwest Missouri State's 1952 NAIA Tournament championship team) traded by the New York Yankees to the Kansas City Athletics in 1959 in a swap involving Ralph Terry, who pitched in five straight World Series for the Yanks. . . . Starting P Gary Peters (played for Grove City, PA, in midi-1950s) batted sixth in the Chicago White Sox lineup in a 5-1 loss against the New York Yankees in the opener of a 1968 doubleheader.
25 - P Jim Bibby (Fayetteville State, NC, backup player and brother of UCLA All-American Henry Bibby) and Pittsburgh Pirates teammate Jim Winn tied a MLB record by combining to walk seven consecutive batters in the third inning of a 1983 game against the Atlanta Braves. . . . Hall of Fame C Mickey Cochrane (Boston University player in early 1920s), after socking a third-inning homer for the Detroit Tigers against the New York Yankees in his final official at-bat, incurred a skull fracture in three places when beaned by a 3-1 pitch in the fifth in 1937. The player-manager never returned to active duty as a player. . . . In 1950, Cochrane was named general manager of the Philadelphia Athletics. . . . In 1960, St. Louis Cardinals 1B George Crowe (four-year letterman from 1939-40 through 1942-43 for Indiana Central after becoming the first high school player named the state's "Mr. Basketball") hit a MLB career-record 11th pinch-hit homer. . . . Boston Red Sox 1B Walt Dropo (Connecticut's first player ever to average 20 points for a season with 21.7 in 1942-43), en route to becoming 1950 A.L. Rookie of the Year, drove in six runs (four with a grand slam) in a 15-12 verdict over the St. Louis Browns. . . . 2B Davey Lopes (NAIA All-District 15 selection for Iowa Wesleyan averaged 16.9 ppg as a freshman in 1964-65 and 12.1 ppg as a sophomore in 1965-66) lashed the last of seven homers for the Los Angeles Dodgers on a 3-0 delivery in a 17-6 whipping of the Cincinnati Reds in 1979. In Lopes' next at-bat, he was decked on four straight pitches, precipitating a brawl. . . . St. Louis Cardinals rookie CF Wally Moon (averaged 4.3 ppg with Texas A&M in 1948-49 and 1949-50) swiped four bases in a 9-4 decision over the Chicago Cubs in 1954. . . . OF Champ Summers (team-high scoring averages of 15.7 ppg for Nicholls State in 1964-65 and 22.5 ppg for SIUE in 1969-70) traded by the Cincinnati Reds to the Detroit Tigers in 1979.
24 - Elden Auker (All-Big Six Conference first five selection with Kansas State in 1931-32) pitched the first night game in St. Louis in 1940 when Cleveland Indians Hall of Fame P Bob Feller defeated the Browns, 3-2. . . . Davey Johnson (averaged 1.7 ppg with Texas A&M in 1961-62) replaced Tony Perez as manager of the Cincinnati Reds in 1993. . . . Chicago White Sox P Ted Lyons (two-time All-SWC first-team selection for Baylor in the early 1920s) surrendered 24 hits in going the distance in a 21-inning, 6-5 defeat against the Detroit Tigers in 1929. . . . In 1946, 45-year-old Lyons relinquished the mound to become manager of the White Sox. In his last 28 appearances, he hurled complete games. . . . New York Giants P Christy Mathewson (played basketball for Bucknell at turn of 20th Century) defeated the St. Louis Cardinals 24 consecutive times until losing to the Cards, 3-1, in 1909. . . . 1B Howie Schultz (Hamline, MN, product played and coached professional basketball) awarded on waivers by the Philadelphia Phillies to the Cincinnati Reds in 1948. . . . 1B-OF Preston Ward (second-leading scorer for Southwest Missouri State in 1946-47 and 1948-49) contributed a triple and homer in helping the Pittsburgh Pirates snap an 11-game losing streak with a 15-1 romp over the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1955.
23 - P Mike Barlow (Syracuse substitute from 1967-68 through 1969-70) shipped by the Oakland Athletics to the St. Louis Cardinals in 1975 to complete an earlier trade. . . . P Ray Burris (played for Southwestern Oklahoma State) traded by the Chicago Cubs to the New York Yankees for P Dick Tidrow in 1979. . . . INF Howard Freigau (played for Ohio Wesleyan) traded by the St. Louis Cardinals to the Chicago Cubs in 1925. . . . St. Louis Cardinals P Bob Gibson (Creighton's leading scorer in 1955-56 and 1956-57) fanned 16 Philadelphia Phillies batters in a 3-1 victory in 1970. . . . In 1911, New York Giants P Christy Mathewson (played for Bucknell at turn of 20th Century) defeated the Cincinnati Reds for the 18th consecutive time. . . . INF Dan Monzon (played for Buena Vista, IA, in mid-1960s) traded by the Minnesota Twins to the Montreal Expos in 1974. . . . P Curly Ogden (competed as a center for Swarthmore, PA, in 1919, 1920 and 1922) purchased from the Philadelphia Athletics by the Washington Senators in 1924. . . . Baltimore Orioles P Robin Roberts (Michigan State's runner-up in scoring in 1945-46 and 1946-47) hurled a two-hitter (both by light-hitting SS Eddie Brinkman/.224 career batting average) in a 6-0 victory over the Washington Senators in 1963. . . . P Paul Splittorff (runner-up in scoring and rebounding for Morningside, IA, in 1967-68) hurled 11 shutout innings for the Kansas City Royals before they edged the Minnesota Twins, 1-0, in 15 frames in 1981. . . . Bobby Winkles (led Illinois Wesleyan in scoring in 1950-51) stepped down as manager of the Oakland A's in 1978 although they were leading the A.L. Western Division.
22 - 1B Bill Davis (averaged 12.5 ppg in 1963-64 for a Minnesota team including eventual NBA standouts Archie Clark and Lou Hudson) traded by the San Diego Padres to the St. Louis Cardinals in 1969. . . . OF Dick Gernert (Temple letterman in 1948-49) was one of four Boston Red Sox players to wallop a homer in the sixth inning of an 11-0 victory over the Cleveland Indians in 1957. . . . Gil Hodges (played for Oakland City, IN, in 1947 and 1948) became manager of the Washington Senators in 1963 after being acquired from the New York Mets for OF Jimmy Piersall. . . . INF Jerry Lumpe (member of Southwest Missouri State's 1952 NAIA Tournament championship team) notched the New York Yankees only hit (a single) in a 5-0 setback against knuckleballer Hoyt Wilhelm of the Baltimore Orioles in 1959. . . . Chicago White Sox P Ted Lyons (two-time All-SWC first-team selection with Baylor in the early 1920s) beat the Washington Senators, 9-2, in 1938 for his 200th career victory. . . . Utilityman Jimmy Stewart (All-Volunteer State Athletic Conference selection for Austin Peay State in 1959-60 and 1960-61) purchased from the Chicago Cubs by the Chicago White Sox in 1967.
21 - OF Ethan Allen (Cincinnati letterman in 1924-25 and 1925-26) traded by the Philadelphia Phillies to the Chicago Cubs in 1936. . . . Hall of Fame C Mickey Cochrane (Boston University hoopster in early 1920s) clobbered three homers as a Philadelphia Athletics rookie in a 20-4 rout of the St. Louis Browns in 1925. . . . New York Yankees P Steve Hamilton (Morehead State's leading scorer and rebounder in 1956-57 and 1957-58) registered a save by getting the last two outs to preserve a 2-0 shutout over the Washington Senators in 1970 after starter Mel Stottlemyre issued 11 walks. . . . INF-OF Rick Herrscher (led SMU with 17.5 ppg in 1957-58 when he was an All-SWC first-team selection) shipped by the Milwaukee Braves to the New York Mets in 1962 to complete an earlier deal. . . . OF Don Lock (led Wichita State in field-goal percentage in 1956-57 and 1957-58) ended an 18-inning marathon in 1967 when his two-out single gave the Philadelphia Phillies a 2-1 win over the Cincinnati Reds. . . . San Francisco Giants OF Terrell Lowery (two-time All-WCC first-team selection and league-leading scorer for Loyola Marymount in 1990-91 and 1991-92) banged out five hits, including three doubles, in a 16-10 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers in 2000. . . . Hall of Fame P Robin Roberts (Michigan State's second-leading scorer in 1945-46 and 1946-47) signed by Baltimore Orioles in 1962 after he was released by the New York Yankees. . . . Brooklyn Dodgers INF Jackie Robinson (highest scoring average in Pacific Coast Conference both of his seasons with UCLA in 1939-40 and 1940-41) supplied six RBI in a 15-6 romp over the St. Louis Cardinals in 1949. . . . P Jim Wilson (letterman for San Diego State's 1942 NAIA Tournament participant) traded by the Baltimore Orioles to the Chicago White Sox in 1956.
20 - Chicago Cubs 2B Glenn Beckert (three-year letterman for Allegheny, MA) hit an inside-the-park HR in a 20-3 romp over the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1967. OF Ted Savage (led Lincoln, MO, in scoring average in 1955-56) rounded out the Cubbies' scoring by stealing home in the seventh inning, prompting Dodgers P Don Drysdale to wave a white handkerchief of surrender. . . . SS Alvin Dark (letterman for LSU and USL during World War II) traded by the St. Louis Cardinals to Chicago Cubs in 1958. . . . P Rich Hand (averaged 6.2 ppg for Puget Sound, WA, in 1967-68) traded by the Texas Rangers to the California Angels in 1973. . . . C Birdie Tebbetts (played for Providence in 1932) traded by the Detroit Tigers to the Boston Red sox in 1947.
19 - Chicago Cubs 2B Glenn Beckert (three-year letterman for Allegheny, MA) had his 26-game hitting streak snapped by Ken Brett of the Philadelphia Phillies in 1973. . . . OF Bob Cerv (ranked fourth on Nebraska's career scoring list in 1949-50 when finishing his career) traded by the Kansas City Athletics to the New York Yankees in 1960. . . . P Mark Freeman (averaged 3.6 ppg for LSU as a senior in 1950-51) traded by the New York Yankees to the Chicago Cubs in 1960. . . . OF Irv Noren (player of the year for California community college state champion Pasadena City in 1945) traded by the St. Louis Cardinals to the Chicago Cubs in 1959.
18 - OF Brant Alyea (Hofstra's leading scorer and rebounder in 1960-61 after being runner-up in both categories the previous season) traded by the Oakland Athletics to the St. Louis Cardinals in 1972. . . . Detroit Tigers 2B Frank Bolling (averaged 7.3 ppg for Spring Hill, AL, in 1950-51) scored five runs in a 14-2 victory over the Boston Red Sox in 1959. . . . OF Hoot Evers (starter for Illinois in 1939-40) awarded on waivers to the New York Giants from the Boston Red Sox in 1954. . . . Washington Senators LF Frank Howard (two-time All-Big Ten Conference first-team selection when he led Ohio State in scoring and rebounding in 1956-57 and 1957-58) tied an A.L. record with a homer in six consecutive contests in 1968. . . . New York Giants OF Monte Irvin (played basketball for Lincoln, PA, 1 1/2 years in late 1930s) clobbered a grand slam in a rain-shortened, 10-4 triumph over the Chicago Cubs in 1950.
17 - Milwaukee Brewers 1B Joe Adcock (Louisiana State's leading scorer in 1945-46) collected a homer among his four hits in a 9-4 triumph over the New York Giants in 1955. . . . 1B-OF Larry Biittner (runner-up in scoring and rebounding for Buena Vista, IA, in 1966-67) traded with P Steve Renko (averaged 9.9 ppg and 5.8 rpg as a Kansas sophomore in 1963-64) by the Montreal Expos to the Chicago Cubs for 1B Andre Thornton in 1976. The next year, Biittner belted one of the Cubs' seven homers in a 23-6 romp over the San Diego Padres. . . . Detroit Tigers CF Hoot Evers (starter for Illinois in 1939-40) broke up a scoreless duel with a two-run homer in the ninth inning against the Philadelphia Athletics in 1947. . . . 1B Ron Jackson (All-MAC second-team choice from 1951-52 through 1953-54 led Western Michigan in scoring his last two seasons) traded by the Boston Red Sox to the Milwaukee Braves for INF Ray Boone in 1960. . . . Atlanta Braves CF Kenny Lofton (Arizona's leader in steals for 1988 Final Four team compiling a 35-3 record) supplied his third five-hit game of the 1997 campaign in an 11-6 triumph against the St. Louis Cardinals. . . . P Ted Lyons (two-time All-SWC first-team selection for Baylor in the early 1920s) started the first of eight straight doubleheader openers for the Chicago White Sox in 1942. . . . CF Billy North (played four games with Central Washington in 1967-68) traded by the Oakland Athletics to the Los Angeles Dodgers for OF Glenn burke in 1978. . . . OF Jim Northrup (second-leading scorer and third-leading rebounder for Alma, MI, in 1958-59) drilled a game-winning grand slam in the bottom of the ninth inning to give the Detroit Tigers a 7-3 victory over the Washington Senators. It was one of five grand slams for him in 1968. . . . OF Bill Virdon (played for Drury, MO, in 1949) traded by the St. Louis Cardinals to the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1956 only one year after being named N.L. Rookie of the Year. He finished runner-up in the N.L. batting race with a .319 mark (.211 for the Cards and .334 for the Pirates). . . . Washington Senators P Tom Zachary (Guilford, NC, letterman in 1916) yielded the 3,000th career hit of Cleveland Indians OF Tris Speaker's career in 1925.).
16 - Utilityman Chuck Harmon (freshman starter was Toledo's second-leading scorer for 1943 NIT runner-up) traded by the Cincinnati Reds to the St. Louis Cardinals for INF Alex Grammas and OF Joe Frazier in 1956. . . . Washington Senators LF Frank Howard (two-time All-Big Ten Conference first-team selection when he led Ohio State in scoring and rebounding in 1956-57 and 1957-58) registered his third two-homer contest in a four-game span in 1968. . . . New York Giants P Christy Mathewson (played basketball for Bucknell at turn of 20th Century) had his string of 47 straight innings without issuing a walk end against the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1913. . . . Philadelphia Phillies P Eppa Rixey (Virginia letterman in 1912 and 1914) hurled a 15-inning complete game at Cincinnati and won, 3-2, via his sacrifice fly in 1920. . . . P Sonny Siebert (team-high 16.7 ppg for Missouri in 1957-58 as an All-Big Eight Conference second-team selection) traded by the San Diego Padres to the Oakland Athletics in 1975. . . . 1B-OF Preston Ward (second-leading scorer for Southwest Missouri State in 1946-47 and 1948-49) traded by the Pittsburgh Pirates to the Cleveland Indians in 1956.
15 - Chicago Cubs RF George Altman (appeared in 1953 and 1954 NAIA Tournament with Tennessee State) made an eighth-inning leaping catch in 1960 to help preserve Don Cardwell's no-hitter against the St. Louis Cardinals. It was Cardwell's first start for the Cubbies after he was acquired from the Philadelphia Phillies. . . . P George Earnshaw (Swarthmore, PA, participant in 1922) purchased from the Chicago White Sox by the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1935. . . . Hall of Fame C Rick Ferrell (played for Guilford, NC, in mid-1920s) traded by the Washington Senators to the St. Louis Browns in 1941. . . . Atlanta Braves OF David Justice (led Thomas More, KY, in assists in 1984-85) lost for the remainder of the 1996 campaign after dislocating his right shoulder swinging at a pitch. . . . New York Giants P Christy Mathewson (played basketball for Bucknell at turn of 20th Century) tossed his third straight shutout in 1901. . . . New York Yankees OF Irv Noren (player of the year for California junior college state champion Pasadena City in 1945) contributed an inside-the-park grand slam in an 8-4 win over the Kansas City Athletics in 1955. . . . 2B Marv Olson (all-conference selection was team MVP for Luther, IA) traded by the Boston Red Sox to the New York Yankees in 1933 but never played for the Bronx Bombers.
14 - In 1977, Jim Colborn (attended Whittier, CA, in mid-1960s before studying for master's at Edinburgh where he was All-Scotland in basketball) hurled the first no-hitter at Royals Stadium by a Kansas City pitcher (6-0 win against the Texas Rangers). . . . Boston Red Sox P Boo Ferriss (Mississippi State letterman in 1941) threw only 78 pitches in a 3-0 shutout against the Chicago White Sox in 1946. . . . SS Doc Lavan (played for Hope, MI, from 1908 through 1910) purchased from the Washington Senators by the St. Louis Cardinals in 1919. . . . Mel McGaha (first Arkansas player to earn four letters from 1943-44 through 1946-47) fired as manager of the Kansas City Athletics by owner Charlie Finley in 1965. . . . OF Ted Savage (led Lincoln, MO, in scoring average in 1955-56) purchased from the St. Louis Cardinals by the Chicago Cubs in 1967. . . . PH Babe Young (Fordham letterman in 1936) contributed a double and triple in a 10-run, eighth-inning explosion propelling the New York Giants to a 12-6 triumph over the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1942.
13 - OF-1B Beau Bell (Texas A&M two-year letterman in early 1930s) traded by the St. Louis Browns to the Detroit Tigers in a 10-player deal in 1939. . . . OF Larry Doby (reserve guard for Virginia Union's 1943 CIAA titlist) purchased from the Detroit Tigers by the Chicago White Sox in 1959. . . . OF Hoot Evers (starter for Illinois in 1939-40) traded by the Cleveland Indians to the Baltimore Orioles in 1956. . . . Boston Red Sox rookie P Boo Ferriss (Mississippi State letterman in 1941) set an A.L. record for scoreless innings at the start of a MLB career by reaching 22 shutout frames before allowing a tally in 1945. Ferriss struck out Detroit Tigers 1B Rudy York four times - all on called third strikes in an 8-2 win in the opener of a doubleheader. . . . Pittsburgh Pirates SS Dick Groat (two-time All-American with Duke in 1950-51 and 1951-52 when he finished among the nation's top five scorers each season) went 6-for-6 in an 8-2 triumph over the Milwaukee Braves in 1960. . . . C Cal Neeman (Illinois Wesleyan's leading scorer in 1947-48 and 1948-49) traded by the Chicago Cubs to the Philadelphia Phillies in a four-player swap in 1960. . . . Philadelphia Phillies P Robin Roberts (Michigan State's second-leading scorer in 1945-46 and 1946-47) yielded a lead-off HR before retiring the next 27 Cincinnati Reds batters to prevail, 8-1, in 1954. . . . In 1940, Cincinnati Reds 3B Billy Werber (first Duke All-American in 1929-30) became the only player to hit four consecutive doubles in a game in each league (8-8 tie with the St. Louis Cardinals).
12 - Baltimore Orioles OF Al Bumbry (Virginia State's runner-up in scoring with 16.7 ppg as a freshman in 1964-65) suffered a broken leg sliding into second base, missing most of the remainder of the 1978 season. . . . Milwaukee Braves P Gene Conley (All-Pacific Coast Conference first-team selection led the North Division in scoring as a Washington State sophomore in 1949-50) beat the Dodgers, 2-1, in 1955, ending Brooklyn's streak from the start of the season of 25 consecutive contests where they led at some point in the game. . . . In 1930, Philadelphia Athletics P George Earnshaw (Swarthmore, PA, participant in 1922) committed three balks and Cleveland Indians counterpart Milt Shoffner had five balks (three in the third inning). . . . P Johnny Gee (sixth-leading scorer in Big Ten Conference for Michigan's 16-4 team in 1936-37) purchased by the New York Giants from the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1944. . . . St. Louis Cardinals P Bob Gibson (Creighton's leading scorer in 1955-56 and 1956-57) struck out the side on none pitches in the seventh inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1969. . . . New York Mets 1B Gil Hodges (played for Oakland City, IN, in 1947 and 1948) hit a ninth-inning, game-ending HR in the nightcap of a 1962 doubleheader. Teammate Hobie Landrith did the same thing in the opener against the Milwaukee Braves. . . . Baltimore Orioles P Ben McDonald (started six games as a 6-6 freshman for Louisiana State in 1986-87) squared off against 6-10 Randy Johnson of the Seattle Mariners in 1991 in the tallest starting pitching matchup in MLB history. . . . St. Louis Cardinals rookie CF Wally Moon (averaged 4.3 ppg with Texas A&M in 1948-49 and 1949-50) notched his second five-hit game and scored five runs in a 13-5 pounding of the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1954. . . . SS Billy Werber (first Duke All-American in 1929-30) purchased by the Boston Red Sox from the New York Yankees in 1933. . . . P Tom Zachary (Guilford, NC, letterman in 1916) acquired on waivers by the Boston Braves from the New York Yankees in 1930.
11 - OF-1B Bruce Bochte (starting forward for Santa Clara's 1970 NCAA playoff team) traded by the California Angels to the Cleveland Indians in 1977. . . . Hall of Fame C Rick Ferrell (Guilford, NC, basketball player in mid-1920s) traded by the St. Louis Browns to the Boston Red Sox in 1933. . . . Utilityman Chuck Harmon (freshman starter was Toledo's second-leading scorer for 1943 NIT runner-up) traded by the St. Louis Cardinals to the Philadelphia Phillies in 1957. . . . Frank Howard (two-time All-Big Ten Conference first-team selection when he led Ohio State in scoring and rebounding in 1956-57 and 1957-58) hammered two homers for the Washington Senators but they weren't enough to prevent a 6-5 defeat at Seattle in 1969. . . . Los Angeles Dodgers P Sandy Koufax (Cincinnati's freshman squad in 1953-54), continuing his comeback from a circulatory ailment in his left index finger, hurled a no-hitter against the San Francisco Giants in 1963. . . . INF Vance Law (averaged 6.8 ppg for Brigham Young from 1974-75 through 1976-77) contributed a 10th-inning squeeze bunt to give the Chicago Cubs a 1-0 victory over the San Diego Padres in 1988. . . . OF Danny Litwhiler (member of JV squad with Bloomsburg, PA, three years in mid-1930s) traded by the Boston Braves to the Cincinnati Reds in 1948. . . . OF Ted Savage (led Lincoln, MO, in scoring average in 1955-56) traded by the Milwaukee Brewers to the Kansas City Royals in 1971. . . . OF Dave Winfield (starting forward with Minnesota's first NCAA playoff team in 1972), citing a no-trade clause in his contract with the New York Yankees, refused to report to the Angels after being traded in 1990. Five days later, he accepted the deal. . . . OF Randy Winn (Santa Clara backcourtmate of eventual two-time NBA Most Valuable Player Steve Nash in 1993-94) whacked a two-out, two-run homer in the ninth inning to give Tampa Bay a 6-4 victory over the Baltimore Orioles in 2002, snapping the Devil Rays' 15-game losing streak.
10 - Cleveland Indians P Jim Bibby (Fayetteville State, NC, backup basketball player and brother of UCLA All-American Henry Bibby) hurled a 1-0 shutout against the Milwaukee Brewers in the opener of a 1977 doubleheader. . . . 1B-OF Dick Gernert (letterman with Temple in 1948-49 when he averaged 2.7 ppg) traded by the Detroit Tigers to the Cincinnati Reds in 1961. . . . Utilityman Chuck Harmon (freshman starter was Toledo's second-leading scorer for 1943 NIT runner-up) traded by the St. Louis Cardinals to the Philadelphia Phillies in 1957. . . . 1B Howie Schultz (Hamline, MN, product played and coached professional basketball) purchased from the Brooklyn Dodgers by the Philadelphia Phillies in 1947. . . . 3B John Werhas (led Southern California in scoring average in 1958-59 and 1959-60) traded by the Los Angeles Dodgers to the California Angels for OF and fellow USC product Len Gabrielson in 1967.
9 - New York Giants Andy Cohen (Alabama letterman in 1924 and 1925) hit a leadoff homer but they wound up losing to the Pittsburgh Pirates, 3-2, in 1929. . . . Hall of Fame C Rick Ferrell (played for Guilford, NC, in mid-1920s) traded by the St. Louis Browns to the Boston Red Sox in 1933. . . . C Cal Neeman (Illinois Wesleyan's leading scorer in 1947-48 and 1948-49) purchased from the Philadelphia Phillies by the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1962. . . . INF-OF Mel Roach (averaged 9.3 ppg in 1952-53 in Virginia's final season prior to helping form the ACC) traded by the Milwaukee Braves to the Chicago Cubs for OF-INF Frank Thomas in 1961. . . . In his first game outside of New York City, Brooklyn Dodgers 1B Jackie Robinson (highest scoring average in Pacific Coast Conference both of his seasons with UCLA in 1939-40 and 1940-41) collected two hits and scored two runs in a 6-5 loss at Philadelphia in 1947. After the contest, the Dodgers gave him a vote of confidence by selling his backup, Howie Schultz (attended Hamline, MN, before playing in NBA) to the Phillies for $50,000. . . . P Sonny Siebert (team-high 16.7 ppg for Missouri in 1957-58 as an All-Big Eight Conference second-team selection) homered for the Cleveland Indians in the nightcap of a 1965 doubleheader against the Boston Red Sox.
8 - Jerry Adair (one of Oklahoma State's three leading scorers in 1956-57 and 1957-58 while ranking among the nation's top 12 free-throw shooters each season) committed an eighth-inning miscue for the Baltimore Orioles against the Detroit Tigers in 1965, ending his MLB-record streaks for consecutive errorless games by a 2B (89) and consecutive chances handled without an error (438). . . . OF Bob Cerv (ranked fourth on Nebraska's career scoring list in 1949-50 when finishing his career) acquired from the Los Angeles Angels by the New York Yankees in 1961 for his third tour of duty in pinstriples. . . . In 1948, Cleveland Indians OF Larry Doby (reserve guard for Virginia Union's 1943 CIAA titlist) whacked the longest home run at Washington's Griffith Stadium since Babe Ruth in 1922. . . . P Jay Hook (Northwestern's third-leading scorer with 10.7 ppg as a sophomore in 1955-56) traded by the New York Mets to the Milwaukee Braves in 1964. . . . LF Lou Johnson (Kentucky State teammate of legendary HBCU coach Davey Whitney averaged 5.7 ppg and 2 rpg in 1951-52) traded by the Milwaukee Braves with cash to the Detroit Tigers in 1963. . . . Chicago White Sox P Bob Keegan (Bucknell letterman in 1941-42 and 1942-43) yielded three homers to Boston Red Sox Hall of Fame OF Ted Williams in a 4-1 defeat in 1957.
7 - INF-OF Harvey Hendrick (Vanderbilt letterman in 1918) traded by the Brooklyn Robins to the Cincinnati Reds in 1931. . . . OF David Justice (led Thomas More, KY, in assists in 1984-85) hit two homers to help the Cleveland Indians erase a 9-1 deficit and defeat the Tampa Devil Rays, 20-11, in 1999. . . . P Jack Ogden (competed with Swarthmore, PA, in 1918) traded by the Cincinnati Reds with Leo Durocher to the St. Louis Cardinals in 1933. . . . Hal Schumacher (played basketball for St. Lawrence, NY) combined with New York Giants teammate Carl Hubbell to toss back-to-back shutouts in 1932 doubleheader against the Cincinnati Reds. . . . 1B-OF Preston Ward (second-leading scorer for Southwest Missouri State in 1946-47 and 1948-49) tripled after three teammates walked to spur the Brooklyn Dodgers to a 9-5 victory at Chicago in 1948. . . . New York Giants 1B Bill White (played two years with Hiram, OH, in early 1950s) homered in his first MLB at-bat in 1956 (against the St. Louis Cardinals).
6 - Hall of Fame C Mickey Cochrane (Boston University basketball player in early 1920s) clobbered his first MLB homer with the Philadelphia Athletics in 1925. . . . Boston Red Sox rookie P Boo Ferriss (Mississippi State letterman in 1941) hurled his second straight shutout in 1945, whitewashing the New York Yankees, 5-0. . . . OF Jim Gleeson (NAIA Hall of Famer was an all-league player for Rockhurst, MO, in early 1930s) traded by the Cincinnati Reds to the St. Louis Cardinals in 1942. . . . In 1967, 1B Cotton Nash (three-time All-American averaged 22.7 ppg and 12.3 rpg in Kentucky career from 1961-62 through 1963-64) traded by the California Angels with cash to the Chicago White Sox for 1B Bill "Moose" Skowron (scored 18 points in eight games for Purdue in 1949-50). . . . A two-out, seventh-inning single by Jim Northrup (second-leading scorer and third-leading rebounder for Alma, MI, in 1958-59) was the Detroit Tigers' lone safety when they were blanked, 4-0, by Dave Leonard of the Baltimore Orioles in 1968.
5 - 2B Marv Breeding (played for Samford in mid-1950s) traded by the Atlanta Braves to the San Francisco Giants in 1966. . . . George Earnshaw (competed on Swarthmore, PA, basketball squad in 1922) ignited a 17-game winning streak for the Philadelphia Athletics in 1931 with a 4-1 triumph over the Boston Red Sox. . . . OF Don Lock (led Wichita State in field-goal percentage in 1956-57 and 1957-58) traded by the Philadelphia Phillies to the Boston Red Sox in 1969. . . . In the nightcap of a twinbill against the Philadelphia Phillies, St. Louis Cardinals OF Wally Moon (averaged 4.3 ppg with Texas A&M in 1948-49 and 1949-50) began a 24-game hitting streak, the longest of the 1957 season in the N.L. . . . 1B-OF Norm Siebern (member of Southwest Missouri State's back-to-back NAIA Tournament titlists in 1952 and 1953) scored five runs for the Kansas City Athletics in an 18-6 romp over the Cleveland Indians in the opener of a doubleheader in 1962.
4 - Atlanta Braves P Ron Reed (Notre Dame's leading rebounder in 1963-64 and 1964-65) incurs the defeat in a 20-inning marathon against the Philadelphia Phillies in 1973. . . . P Sonny Siebert (team-high 16.7 ppg for Missouri in 1957-58 as an All-Big Eight Conference second-team selection) shipped by the Boston Red Sox to the Texas Rangers as part of a conditional deal in 1973. . . . Reliever Lee Smith (averaged 3.4 ppg and 1.9 rpg with Northwestern State in 1976-77) traded by the Boston Red Sox to the St. Louis Cardinals for OF Tom Brunansky in 1990.
3 - P Steve Hamilton (Morehead State's leading scorer and rebounder in 1956-57 and 1957-58) traded by the Cleveland Indians to the Washington Senators in 1962. . . . Teammates OF Irv Noren (basketball player of year for California junior college state champion Pasadena City in 1945) and INF Tommie Upton (led Southeast Missouri State in scoring three years last half of 1940s and was school's career scoring leader upon graduation; while serving in military, he was All-EIBL first-team selection with Penn in 1945-46) traded by the Washington Senators to the New York Yankees for promising OF Jackie Jensen and three other players in 1952. Upton never played for the Yanks. . . . P Steve Roser (center for Clarkson, NY, before passing up senior season after signing professional baseball contract in 1940) purchased from the New York Yankees by the Boston Braves in 1946. . . . P Rollie Sheldon (third-leading scorer as a sophomore for Connecticut's 1960 NCAA Tournament team) traded by the New York Yankees to the Kansas City Athletics in 1965.
2 - Cincinnati Reds 1B George Crowe (four-year letterman from 1939-40 through 1942-43 for Indiana Central after becoming the first high school player named the state's "Mr. Basketball") drove in six runs in a 7-3 victory at St. Louis in 1958. . . . INF Buddy Myer (letterman for Mississippi State in 1923-24) traded by the Washington Senators to the Boston Red Sox in 1927. . . . 3B Graig Nettles (shot 87.8% from free-throw line for San Diego State in 1963-64) swatted a grand slam for the Atlanta Braves in a 12-4 victory over the Houston Astros in 1987. . . . Philadelphia Phillies P Robin Roberts (Michigan State's second-leading scorer in 1945-46 and 1946-47) struck out 13 Chicago Cubs in a 4-2 triumph in 1957. No Philly infielder had an assist in the contest.
1 - After teammate Bill Parsons walked the first three Oakland A's batters, teammate Jim Colborn (Whittier, CA, in mid-1960s before studying for master's at Edinburgh where he was All-Scotland in basketball) came in and pitched a complete-game 4-3 victory for the Milwaukee Brewers in 1973. . . . 3B Billy Werber (first Duke basketball All-American in 1929-30) contributed a homer and double for the Cincinnati Reds during their eight-run fourth inning in 1940 when they defeated the Brooklyn Dodgers, 9-2. . . . A seventh-inning single by Boston Red Sox C Sammy White (All-PCC Northern Division first-five selection for Washington in 1947-48 and 1948-49) represented the only hit Hall of Famer Bob Feller yielded in a 2-0 win for the Cleveland Indians in the opener of a doubleheader in 1955. It was Feller's MLB-record 12th one-hitter. . . . INF Dib Williams (played for Hendrix, AR, in mid-1920s) purchased from the Philadelphia Athletics by the Boston Red Sox in 1935.
Even using a mite foggy crystal ball, was there any doubt we would never know a lot of the precise details stemming from how on earth a mediocre college player had the out-of-this-world fiscal wherewithal to make a down payment of $30,000 and go in debt for $67,800 to purchase custom jewelry in New York in the middle of an eventual NCAA championship season? Lance Thomas, a senior forward who averaged 4.8 ppg for Duke in 2009-10, sure(ty) has left a lot of unanswered questions regarding an escapade that could be dubbed "Diamonds Are Forever" (at least finishing payments for them until settling lawsuit last fall).
Thomas continues to leave inquiring minds wanting a lot more much like he did on the court. Rather than striving for bling to look like a tall rapper, he should have been more concerned about the tall order of living up to his billing as a McDonald's All-American in 2006.
There is no doubt the Blue Devils have a history of dealing in bulk when it comes to McDonald's Unhappy Deals. While observers wonder why Duke is treated differently than Memphis (remember Derrick Rose) when it comes to stonewalling participants, following is a list including him among 10 McDonald's All-Americans who averaged fewer than 5 ppg in their Duke careers:
|Year||McDonald's All-American||Duke Scoring|
|1983||Martin Nessley||2.4 ppg|
|1987||Greg Koubek||4.9 ppg|
|1988||Crawford Palmer||2.4 ppg|
|1993||Joey Beard||1.3 ppg|
|1995||Taymon Domzalski||4.2 ppg|
|1997||Chris Burgess||4.9 ppg|
|1999||Casey Sanders||2.7 ppg|
|2002||Michael Thompson||1.4 ppg|
|2005||Eric Boateng||0.7 ppg|
|2006||Lance Thomas||4.6 ppg|
A Big Ten Conference member supplied a national player of the year in three of the last four seasons after Trey Burke (Michigan) was anointed with the honor this campaign. The only previous national POY from the Wolverines was Cazzie Russell in 1966.
Excluding specialty publications, there are five nationally-recognized Player of the Year awards. None of them, however, comes anywhere close to being the equivalent to college football's undisputed most prestigious honor, the Heisman Trophy. The basketball stalemate stems from essentially the same people voting on the major awards (writers or coaches or a combination) and the announcements coming one after another right around the Final Four when the playoff games dominate the sports page.
United Press International, which was a sixth venue for major awards through 1996, got all of this back slapping started in 1955. Four years later, the United States Basketball Writers Association, having chosen All-American teams in each of the two previous seasons, added a Player of the Year award to its postseason honors. In recent years, the USBWA award was sponsored by Mercedes and then RCA.
The third oldest of the awards comes from the most dominant wire service, the Associated Press. Perhaps because of its vast network of media outlets, the AP award gets more print and broadcast attention than the other honors. The AP award started in 1961 before affiliating in 1972 with the Commonwealth Athletic Club of Lexington, Ky., which was looking for a way to honor Hall of Fame Kentucky coach Adolph Rupp. The result of their merger is the Rupp Trophy.
The Atlanta Tipoff Club initially was associated with UPI before starting its own Naismith Award in 1969. Six years later, the National Association of Basketball Coaches initiated its award, which was sponsored from the outset by the Eastman Kodak Company. In 1977, the Los Angeles Athletic Club began honoring Hall of Fame UCLA coach John Wooden with the Wooden Award.
Duke, boasting more awards by itself than the Pac-12 collectively, has had eight different national player of the year winners, including seven of them in a 21-year span from 1986 through 2006. UCLA is runner-up with six individuals earning POY acclaim. Incredibly, perennial power Kentucky never had a representative win one of the six principal national player of the year awards until freshman Anthony Davis achieved the feat in 2012.
The Big East, Pac-10 and SEC combined to go 15 straight seasons from 1996-97 through 2010-11 without a national POY. Following is a look at the seven conferences with at least three different individuals earning one of the six principal national player of the year awards since UPI's initial winner in 1955:
ACC (16) - Shane Battier (Duke), Elton Brand (Duke), Johnny Dawkins (Duke), Tim Duncan (Wake Forest), Danny Ferry (Duke), Phil Ford (North Carolina), Tyler Hansbrough (North Carolina), Art Heyman (Duke), Antawn Jamison (North Carolina), Michael Jordan (North Carolina), Christian Laettner (Duke), J.J. Redick (Duke), Ralph Sampson (Virginia), Joe Smith (Maryland), David Thompson (North Carolina State), Jason Williams (Duke).
Big Ten (12) - Gary Bradds (Ohio State), Trey Burke (Michigan), Dee Brown (Illinois), Calbert Cheaney (Indiana), Draymond Green (Michigan State), Jim Jackson (Ohio State), Jerry Lucas (Ohio State), Scott May (Indiana), Shawn Respert (Michigan State), Glenn Robinson Jr. (Purdue), Cazzie Russell (Michigan), Evan Turner (Ohio State).
Eddie Jordan, a member of the New Jersey Nets among the four NBA franchises he played for during his seven-year NBA playing career, returned to his alma mater (Rutgers '77) as head coach. Jordan doesn't have a diploma but joins LSU's Johnny Jones and UNLV's Dave Rice as the only active coaches to have played for their alma mater in a Final Four.
Jordan also has the distinction of being an NBA head coach (three different franchises a total of nine years). He is the leader in scoring and assists average among the following alphabetical list of seven active Division I head coaches detailing the first season they coached their alma mater after playing in the NBA:
|Active Coach||Alma Mater||1st Year||Summary of NBA Playing Career|
|Jerome Allen||Pennsylvania '95||2009-10||Averaged 2.9 ppg, 1.1 rpg and 1.7 apg with three NBA teams in two seasons in 1995-96 and 1996-97|
|Bryce Drew||Valparaiso '98||2011-12||Averaged 4.4 ppg, 1.2 rpg and 2.2 apg with three NBA teams in six seasons from 1998-99 through 2003-04|
|Fred Hoiberg||Iowa State '95||2010-11||Averaged 5.1 ppg, 2.6 rpg and 1.7 apg with the Indiana Pacers and Chicago Bulls in eight seasons from 1995-96 through 2002-03|
|Clemon Johnson||Florida A&M '78||2011-12||Averaged 5.4 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 1 apg and 0.9 bpg with four NBA teams in 10 seasons from 1978-79 through 1987-88|
|Eddie Jordan||Rutgers '77||2013-14||Averaged 8.1 ppg, 1.9 rpg and 3.8 apg with four NBA teams in seven seasons from 1977-78 through 1983-84|
|Kevin Ollie||Connecticut '95||2012-13||Averaged 3.8 ppg, 1.5 rpg and 2.3 apg with 12 NBA teams in 13 seasons from 1997-98 through 2009-10|
|Lorenzo Romar||Washington '80||2002-03||Averaged 5.9 ppg, 1.1 rpg and 3.5 apg with three NBA teams in five seasons from 1980-81 through 1984-85|
It won't trigger White History Month, but this season marked the first time in 34 years that at least half of the list of NCAA consensus first- and second-team All-Americans were white players. From 1980 through 2012, less than one-fifth of the NCAA consensus first- and second-team All-Americans were Caucasian.
Duke (adding Mason Plumlee to Mike Dunleavy, J.J. Redick and Jon Scheyer) and Gonzaga (adding Kelly Olynyk to Dan Dickau, Blake Stepp and Adam Morrison) have the most white All-Americans thus far this century. The only other schools with as many as three different white All-Americans in the 21st Century are Kansas (Nick Collison, Cole Aldrich and Jeff Withey) and Notre Dame (Troy Murphy, Luke Harangody and Ben Hansbrough).
Is there a modest resurgence of the white player? After all, Duke was the nation's only school to supply a white first-team All-American in a nine-year span from 1987-88 through 1995-96 (Danny Ferry in 1989, Christian Laettner in 1992 and Bobby Hurley in 1993). For those keeping track of such demographics or who might be a dues-paying member of another NAACP (National Association for Advancement of Caucasian Players), following is a list of white NCAA consensus first- and second-team All-Americans since Indiana State's Larry Bird was unanimous national player of the year in 1979:
1979 (6 of 12) - Indiana State's Larry Bird (1st), Duke's Mike Gminski (1st), North Carolina's Mike O'Koren (2nd), Dayton's Jim Paxson (2nd), Duke's Jim Spanarkel (2nd) and Notre Dame's Kelly Tripucka (2nd)
1990 (0 of 12)
1995 (0 of 10)
Florida State offensive lineman Melenik Watson, a part-time starter as a basketball player in college before concentrating solely on football, was slated in most NFL mock drafts to be a first-round selection. But in a draft with an emphasis on OL, he slipped to the second round.
Watson, the 42nd choice overall by the Oakland Raiders, joined Notre Dame LB Manti Te'o and West Virginia QB Geno Smith as acclaimed players shunned in the opening round. The first ex-college hoopster picked in the draft was wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, who played briefly in seven basketball games with Clemson in 2010-11.
Watson, a native of Manchester, England, was a redshirt freshman for Marist in 2009-10 before contributing 4.7 ppg and 3.3 rpg while shooting a team-high 47.6% from the floor with the Red Foxes in 2010-11. He transferred to Saddleback (Calif.) Community College, where the 6-6, 300-pounder started focusing on football.
Historically, the first 15 NFL drafts from 1936 through 1950 had a former college basketball regular selected among the top 10 picks. Four of the top six choices and five of the top 11 in the 1957 draft were ex-college hoopsters. In 1963, five of the top 22 picks, including four from schools that have always been or subsequently became members of the Big Ten Conference, were in the same category. Hopkins joined the following alphabetical list of NFL first-round draft choices who played varsity college basketball for a major university:
|First-Round Choice||Pos.||College||Selected in Draft By||NFL Pick Overall|
|Neill Armstrong||OE-DB||Oklahoma A&M||Philadelphia Eagles||8th in 1947|
|Doug Atkins||DE||Tennessee||Cleveland Browns||11th in 1953|
|Terry Baker||QB-RB||Oregon State||Los Angeles Rams||1st in 1963|
|Sammy Baugh||QB||Texas Christian||Boston Redskins||6th in 1937|
|*Hub Bechtol||E||Texas Tech/Texas||Pittsburgh Steelers||5th in 1947|
|Johnny Bright||RB||Drake||Philadelphia Eagles||5th in 1952|
|Jim Brown||RB||Syracuse||Cleveland Browns||6th in 1957|
|Bob Carey||WR||Michigan State||Los Angeles Rams||13th in 1952|
|Fred Carr||LB||Texas Western||Green Bay Packers||5th in 1968|
|Lynn Chandnois||HB||Michigan State||Pittsburgh Steelers||8th in 1950|
|George Connor||OL-DT-LB||Notre Dame||New York Giants||5th in 1946|
|Olie Cordill||HB||Rice||Cleveland Browns||5th in 1940|
|Ernie Davis||HB||Syracuse||Washington Redskins||1st in 1962|
|Glenn Davis||HB||Army||Detroit Lions||2nd in 1947|
|Len Dawson||QB||Purdue||Pittsburgh Steelers||5th in 1957|
|Mike Ditka||TE||Pittsburgh||Chicago Bears||5th in 1961|
|Rickey Dudley||TE||Ohio State||Oakland Raiders||9th in 1996|
|Ray Evans||TB-DB||Kansas||Chicago Bears||9th in 1944|
|James Francis||LB||Baylor||Cincinnati Bengals||12th in 1990|
|Reuben Gant||TE||Oklahoma State||Buffalo Bills||18th in 1974|
|Tony Gonzalez||TE||California||Kansas City Chiefs||13th in 1996|
|Otto Graham||QB||Northwestern||Detroit Lions||4th in 1944|
|Bud Grant||E||Minnesota||Philadelphia Eagles||14th in 1950|
|Bob Griese||QB||Purdue||Miami Dolphins||4th in 1967|
|Kevin Hardy||DL||Notre Dame||New Orleans Saints||7th in 1968|
|Tom Harmon||HB-DB||Michigan||Chicago Bears||1st in 1941|
|Todd Heap||TE||Arizona State||Baltimore Ravens||31st in 2001|
|King Hill||QB||Rice||Chicago Cardinals||1st as bonus pick in 1958|
|Elroy "Crazy Legs" Hirsch||OE||Michigan||Cleveland Rams||5th in 1945|
|DeAndre Hopkins||WR||Clemson||Houston Texans||27th in 2013|
|Paul Hornung||RB||Notre Dame||Green Bay Packers||1st as bonus pick in 1957|
|Jack Jenkins||FB-LB||Vanderbilt||Washington Redskins||10th in 1943|
|Ed "Too Tall" Jones||DL||Tennessee State||Dallas Cowboys||1st in 1974|
|Matt Jones||E||Arkansas||Jacksonville Jaquars||21st in 2005|
|Shante Jones||DE||Arizona State||Dallas Cowboys||23rd in 1994|
|Billy Kilmer||QB||UCLA||San Francisco 49ers||11th in 1961|
|Ron Kramer||WR||Michigan||Green Bay Packers||4th in 1957|
|Johnny Lattner||HB||Notre Dame||Pittsburgh Steelers||7th in 1954|
|Bobby Layne||QB||Texas||Chicago Bears||3rd in 1948|
|Ronnie Lott||DB||Southern California||San Francisco 49ers||8th in 1981|
|Johnny Lujack||QB||Notre Dame||Chicago Bears||4th in 1946|
|Don Lund||FB-LB||Michigan||Chicago Bears||7th in 1945|
|Bob MacLeod||B||Dartmouth||Brooklyn Dodgers||5th in 1939|
|Jim McDonald||B||Ohio State||Philadelphia Eagles||2nd in 1938|
|Banks McFadden||HB||Clemson||Brooklyn Dodgers||3rd in 1940|
|Rich McGeorge||TE||Elon||Green Bay Packers||16th in 1970|
|Donovan McNabb||QB||Syracuse||Philadelphia Eagles||2nd in 1999|
|R.W. McQuarters||CB||Oklahoma State||San Francisco 49ers||28th in 1998|
|Leonard Mitchell||DE||Houston||Philadelphia Eagles||27th in 1981|
|Mack Mitchell||DE||Houston||Cleveland Browns||5th in 1975|
|Julius Peppers||DE||North Carolina||Carolina Panthers||2nd in 2002|
|Pat Richter||TE||Wisconsin||Washington Redskins||7th in 1962|
|Andre Rison||WR||Michigan State||Indianapolis Colts||22nd in 1989|
|Jack Robbins||QB||Arkansas||Chicago Cardinals||5th in 1938|
|Reggie Rogers||DL||Washington||Detroit Lions||7th in 1987|
|Art Schlichter||QB||Ohio State||Baltimore Colts||4th in 1982|
|Del Shofner||E||Baylor||Los Angeles Rams||11th in 1957|
|Norm Snead||QB||Wake Forest||Washington Redskins||2nd in 1961|
|Joe Stydahar||T||West Virginia||Chicago Bears||6th in 1936|
|Doak Walker||HB-DB||Southern Methodist||New York Bulldogs||3rd in 1949|
|Byron "Whizzer" White||B||Colorado||Pittsburgh Steelers||4th in 1938|
|Alfred Williams||DE||Colorado||Cincinnati Bengals||18th in 1991|
|Jack Wilson||HB||Baylor||Cleveland Browns||2nd in 1942|
|Kendall Wright||WR||Baylor||Tennessee Titans||20th in 2012|
*Bechtol played in the AAFC, where he was a second-round pick (9th overall).
Kentucky loyalists are counting on returning to elite status next season. The follow-the-pack national media already is falling in lockstep predicting the Wildcats will claw back to at least near the top of the national polls. But Big Blue Nation and welfare writers (accepting guesswork handouts from well-meaning but ineffectual middle men) better hope the recruiting gurus ranking high school hotshots emerge from a sorry slump.
What good are prep player rankings if the brainiac analysts can't come close to pinpointing a prospect who will become a college All-American in a couple of years? This season provided ample evidence of rating ineptitude when four of the five NCAA unanimous All-American first-team selections, including national player of the year Trey Burke (Michigan), weren't ranked among the consensus Top 100 H.S. recruits assembled by RSCI the years they left high school. First-teamer Kelly Olynyk (Gonzaga) and Final Four MOP Luke Hancock (Louisville) weren't among the top 100 in 2009. First-teamers Doug McDermott (Creighton) and Victor Oladipo (Indiana) plus honorable mention All-American Russ Smith (leading scorer for NCAA champion Louisville) weren't among the top 100 in 2010.
Burke wasn't included among the consensus top 100 in 2011 although every scout in this burgeoning charade saw him play on the same high school squad with eventual Ohio State All-American Jared Sullinger. The media hacks, apparently incapable of calculating the difference between AAU-pickup street ball and genuine team ball, should be deep-sixed when you consider that the following long list of mediocre players were ranked higher than Burke but have averaged fewer than six points per game in their DI college careers: Tyler Adams (Georgetown/2.5 ppg), Juan Anderson (Marquette/1.8), C.J. Barksdale (Virginia Tech/4.2), Jamal Branch (Texas A&M & St. John's/5.4), Carlton Brundidge (Michigan & Detroit/0.4), Angelo Chol (Arizona & San Diego State/2.4), Trevor Cooney (Syracuse/3.4), Eric Copes (George Mason/4.8), Nnanna Egwu (Illinois/4.3), D.J. Gardner (Mississippi State/RS kicked off team), Malcolm Gilbert (Pittsburgh/0.5), Cezar Guerrero (Oklahoma State & Fresno State/5.6), Mychael Henry (Illinois/3.2), Mikael Hopkins (Georgetown/4.2), Sidiki Johnson (Arizona & Providence/2.9), Ty Johnson (Villanova & South Carolina/3.3), Damien Leonard (South Carolina/5.5), Rashad Madden (Arkansas/5.4), Hunter Mickelson (Arkansas & Kansas/5.2), Alex Murphy (Duke/2.1), Dai-Jon Parker (Vanderbilt/4), Marshall Plumlee (Duke/0.1), Norman Powell (UCLA/5.3), Zach Price (Louisville/0.9), Julian Royal (Georgia Tech/3.2), Mike Shaw (Illinois/0.9), Deville Smith (Mississippi State/4.2), Antwan Space (Florida State & Texas A&M/0.7), Bernard Sullivan (Clemson/1.6), Naadir Tharpe (Kansas/3.4), Shaquille Thomas (Cincinnati/3), Sam Thompson (Ohio State/4.8), Kevin Ware (Louisville/3.3) and Amir Williams (Ohio State/2.7).
At least the so-called experts offering these mistake-ridden critiques had first-teamer Otto Porter Jr. (Georgetown) and second-teamer Ben McLemore (Kansas) ranked among the top 50 in 2011. But as a cautionary measure, pore over this information again the next time some lazy broadcaster needing a drool bucket begins slobbering over a pimple-faced teenager without ever seeing him play firsthand and just using recruiting services as a resource. In fact, the purveyors of know-it-all opinion should be behind the eight ball when they had the following players averaging less than eight points per game thus far in their college careers ranked ahead of Porter and McLemore: Khem Birch (Pittsburgh & UNLV/6.4 ppg), Wayne Blackshear (Louisville/6.2), Rakeem Christmas (Syracuse/4), DeAndre Daniels (Connecticut/7.5), Dorian Finney-Smith (Virginia Tech & Florida/6.3), Michael Gbinije (Duke & Syracuse/1.9), Levi Randolph (Alabama/7.3), Shannon Scott (Ohio State/3.1), Josiah Turner (Arizona/6.8) and Kyle Wiltjer (Kentucky/7.3).
Turner was jailed a couple of days this spring as punishment for "extreme" DUI. He should have been joined behind bars by dopey devotees intoxicated by recruiting services proclaiming him and more than 100 other players as better than Burke. Who really is more inebriated if they accept as gospel player rankings dwelling on wingspans, weight reps, Soul Train dance moves and carnival-like dunk contests? How about focusing solely on whether they'll continue to improve against comparable athletes, boast the proper attitude to learn to fit in with teammates in a me-myself-and-I generation and make a major bottom-line impact on the game?
NBA three-point shooting sensation Stephen Curry (Davidson) is perhaps the premier collegian thus far this century. If you've got a life, you don't have time to go over all of the no-names ranked better than Curry when he graduated from high school in 2006. You'd have an easier task trying to size up all of the issues involving Missouri coach Frank Haith's checking account when he was at Miami (Fla.).
Rating recruits - the ultimate sports distortion foisted upon dupes - is akin to believing government grifters telling the gullible masses that taxpayer-financed Muslim extremist terrorism is workplace violence or fueled by a largely unseen movie. Pilfering a propaganda-like phrase spun during the institutionalizing of political correctness to the detriment of the safety of the American people, the player ratings are authentic "man-made disasters." They need to make a dramatic turnaround comparable to the White House's appeasing administration now lauding Cambridge/Boston area police after previous exploitation portraying them as "acting stupidly" when it suited their agenda. Amid the insulting misinformation overload, it might be time to visit Rev. Wrong's church and see if he is recruiting susceptible supporters by telling his captive audience that "America's Chechens have come home to roost." Truth escape artists can simply deny you ever heard or read such impudence.
The same play-dumb mindset comparable to the Benghazi stonewalling applies to entitlement-era "ridiculists" stemming from recruiting service player ratings. Resembling Jason Collins' long-time fiancée, you look like a full-fledged fool by putting a significant amount of stock in these breathless rush-to-judgment projections spawning a slew of blue-chippers turned prima donnas. But don't muzzle 'em with a jock jihad or sound as lucid as the buffoonish Bomb Mom. Just give the sane a barf bag when clueless adults hold their collective breath to see if some coddled kid dons their alma mater's cap on TV announcing a college choice. Why can't we simply wait until the impressionable athletes compete in an actual game on a college court before rendering assessments on their ability at the next level?
Mid-major schools supplied two NCAA consensus first-team All-Americans (Creighton's Doug McDermott and Gonzaga's Kelly Olynyk) for the first time since 1972-73 (Oral Roberts' Richie Fuqua, Southwestern Louisiana's Dwight "Bo" Lamar and Long Beach State's Ed Ratleff.
McDermott, bound for a power conference next season (Big East), is only the second mid-major player since Indiana State's Larry Bird in 1977-78 and 1978-79 to become a two-time NCAA consensus first-team All-American. UNLV's Larry Johnson (1989-90 and 1990-91) had been the only player in that category in a 33-year span.
Following is a chronological list of mid-level NCAA consensus first- and second-team All-Americans who played for a school never to be a member of a power conference (Creighton, Houston, Memphis, SMU and Temple moving up to fragmented Big East) since the ACC was introduced in 1953-54:
Been there; done that! Amid the seemingly incessant affiliation realignment, former Illinois State coach Porter Moser returned to the Missouri Valley Conference when Loyola of Chicago switched leagues and joined the MVC. Last season, former Missouri State coach Barry Hinson returned to the Valley in a similar capacity at Southern Illinois. When Jimmy Patsos remained in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference by leaving Loyola (Md.) for Siena, Moser and Patsos joined the following alphabetical list of active coaches - four in the MEAC - who were bench bosses of two different schools in the same league:
Anthony Evans, shifting from Norfolk State to Florida International, became the seventh coach in NCAA Division I history to be hired directly from a historically black college or university by a predominantly white school. The SWAC and MEAC moved up to the major-college level in 1979-80 and 1980-81, respectively.
Evans joined Jeff Capel Jr. (North Carolina A&T to Old Dominion after 1993-94 campaign), Rob Chavez (Maryland-Eastern Shore to Portland after 1993-94), Steve Merfeld (Hampton to Evansville after 2001-02), James Green (Mississippi Valley State to Jacksonville State after 2007-08), John Cooper (Tennessee State to Miami of Ohio after 2011-12) and Sean Woods (Mississippi Valley State to Morehead State after 2011-12).
No power six conference member ever has gone to a HBCU to hire its head basketball coach. None of the limited progress in this category would have occurred if not for pioneer John McLendon, who was the first African-American mentor hired by a predominantly white university when he coached Cleveland State for three seasons in the late 1960s just prior to the institution moving up to DI. After winning three consecutive NAIA titles with Tennessee State in the late 1950s, McLendon had been the first African-American head coach in professional sports when he was hired in the early 1960s by the George Steinbrenner-owned Cleveland Pipers of the short- lived American Basketball League.
Seth Greenberg missed out on a couple of sizzling scorers for Virginia Tech when he failed to successfully recruit the sons of Gobblers great Dell Curry. Stephen Curry (Davidson) and Seth Curry (Liberty/Duke) went on to become the highest-scoring brother tandem in NCAA Division I history. But amid the fizzling program Greenberg left behind for ACC cellar dweller VT when he was fired as coach was guard Erick Green.
Green, who averaged only 2.6 ppg with the Hokies as a freshman in 2009-10, became the first player in 19 years from a power six conference to lead the nation in scoring. Glenn Robinson Jr. (30.3 ppg for Purdue in 1993-94) had been the only player from a power six league to pace the country in scoring in the previous 41 campaigns.
Lehigh's C.J. McCollum (25.7 ppg) was pacing the nation in point production in mid-season before missing the remainder of the campaign after breaking his left foot. The scoring leaders among power leagues since Robinson included (in reverse order):
Season Leader Among Power Leagues School Avg. NCAA Ranking 2011-12 Terrell Stoglin Maryland 21.6 sixth 2010-11 Marshon Brooks Providence 24.6 second 2009-10 Devan Downey South Carolina 22.5 fourth 2008-09 Jodie Meeks Kentucky 23.7 seventh 2007-08 Michael Beasley Kansas State 26.2 third 2006-07 Kevin Durant Texas 25.8 fourth 2005-06 J.J. Redick Duke 26.8 second 2004-05 Ike Diogu Arizona State 22.6 sixth 2003-04 Ike Diogu Arizona State 22.8 ninth 2002-03 Troy Bell Boston College 25.2 fifth 2001-02 Casey Jacobsen Stanford 21.9 14th 2000-01 Troy Murphy Notre Dame 21.8 13th 1999-00 Eddie House Arizona State 23 fifth 1998-99 Quincy Lewis Minnesota 23.1 sixth 1997-98 Cory Carr Texas Tech 23.3 sixth 1996-97 Ed Gray California 24.8 second 1995-96 Allen Iverson Georgetown 25 seventh 1994-95 Shawn Respert Michigan State 25.6 eighth
Green (25 ppg) finished with the lowest average for the national scoring leader since Yale's Tony Lavelli posted 22.4 points per game in 1948-49. Following is a look at the high and low games for players during the season when they led NCAA Division I in scoring average:
NOTE: Leaders are unofficial from 1935-36 through 1946-47.
Syracuse's Carmelo Anthony was the only freshman All-American in a nine-year span from 1997 through 2005 before there was an average of two freshman A-As the last seven years. McLemore and Smart are among the following chronological list of 35 individuals to earn All-American recognition as a freshman:
|Year||Freshman All-American||Pos.||College||First-Year All-American Recognition|
|1947||Kevin O'Shea||G||Notre Dame||NABC3|
|1952||Tom Gola||C-F||La Salle||C1|
|1975||Phil Ford||G||North Carolina||C2|
|1975||Bernard King||F||Tennessee||C2, UPI2, NABC3|
|1978||Earvin "Magic" Johnson||G||Michigan State||NABC2, AP3, UPI3|
|1982||Keith Lee||C||Memphis State||C1, AP2|
|1983||Wayman Tisdale||F-C||Oklahoma||AP1, C1, USBWA1, UPI2, NABC3|
|1988||Mark Macon||G||Temple||AP2, NABC2|
|1989||Chris Jackson||G||Louisiana State||AP1, UPI1, USBWA1, NABC2|
|1989||Alonzo Mourning||C||Georgetown||AP3, UPI3|
|1990||Kenny Anderson||G||Georgia Tech||NABC1, AP3|
|1996||Sharef Abdur-Rahim||F-C||California||AP3, NABC3|
|2003||Carmelo Anthony||F||Syracuse||AP2, NABC2, USBWA2|
|2006||Tyler Hansbrough||C||North Carolina||AP3|
|2007||Kevin Durant||F||Texas||AP1, NABC1, USBWA1|
|2007||Greg Oden||C||Ohio State||AP1, NABC2, USBWA2|
|2008||Michael Beasley||F||Kansas State||AP1, NABC1, USBWA1|
|2008||Eric Gordon||G||Indiana||NABC2, AP3|
|2008||Kevin Love||C||UCLA||AP1, USBWA1, NABC2|
|2008||Derrick Rose||G||Memphis||AP3, NABC3|
|2010||DeMarcus Cousins||C||Kentucky||AP1, NABC2, USBWA2|
|2010||John Wall||G||Kentucky||AP1, NABC1, USBWA1|
|2011||Jared Sullinger||F-C||Ohio State||AP1, NABC1, USBWA1|
|2012||Anthony Davis||C||Kentucky||AP1, NABC1, USBWA1|
|2012||Michael Kidd-Gilchrist||F||Kentucky||USBWA2, AP3, NABC3|
|2013||Ben McLemore||F||Kansas||AP2, NABC2, USBWA2|
|2013||Marcus Smart||G||Oklahoma State||AP2, NABC2, USBWA2|
All-American Recognition Key: AP - Associated Press; C - Converse; NABC - National Association of Basketball Coaches; UPI - United Press International; USBWA - United States Basketball Writers Association.
Senioritis is a colloquial term referring to an illness described as decreased motivation displayed by students nearing the end of their careers. In basketball lingo, it's a dreaded disease that also afflicts All-Americans.
The malady lingers even in an era when the majority of premium players bid adieu the first time a pro scout watches one of their games. This season, the A-A shunning might have been because it was a mid-major involved rather than power conference player. Murray State's Isaiah Canaan failed to return to All-American status despite significant increases in both scoring and assists.
Actually, this ailment is rarely a player's fault and seems to mainly infect voters. In one of the greatest injustices in NCAA history, Seton Hall's Nick Werkman averaged 33.2 ppg and 13.8 rpg in 1963-64 but wasn't named an All-American for the second straight season.
Canaan joined Werkman among 18 players who didn't retain A-A status despite averaging more than 20 points per game as a senior. Following is an alphabetical list of major-college players named All-American as an undergraduate since the late 1940s (after the roster disruption of WWII) but not as a senior when they fell off the honors radar:
*Boin missed the 1957-58 season after dropping out of school and playing AAU ball
NOTES: UCLA's Lucius Allen (academic problems in 1968-69) and St. John's Mel Davis (knee injury in 1972-73) and Texas Western's Bobby Joe Hill (injury and grade problems in 1966-67) did not play full or at all in their senior seasons. . . . Canisius' Larry Fogle, an All-American as a sophomore in 1974 when he led the nation in scoring, entered the NBA draft as a hardship case the next year after failing to earn All-American status again. . . . Illinois' Frank Williams, an All-American as a sophomore in 2000-01, declared for the NBA draft as an undergraduate the next year after failing to to earn All-American status again. . . . Austin Peay's Fly Williams, an All-American as a freshman in 1973 when he led the nation in scoring, entered the ABA draft as an undergraduate the next year after failing to earn All-American status again.
In a microwave atmosphere of instant expectations, Virginia Tech's Erick Green (2.6 ppg in 2009-10), Gonzaga's Kelly Olynyk (3.8 in 2009-10), Duke's Mason Plumlee (3.7 in 2009-10), Louisville's Russ Smith (2.2 in 2010-11) and Kansas' Jeff Withey (1.3 in 2009-10) failed to generate national headlines in their freshman seasons before blossoming into All-Americans.
They are classic examples of why fans shouldn't put too much stock in freshman statistics. Withey, on the heels of Cole Aldrich and Thomas Robinson, became the third KU frontcourter in the last four years to become an All-American after shaky starts.
Green, Olynyk, Plumlee, Smith and Withey aren't the only All-Americans who endured growing pains. Green, Smith and Withey joined the following alphabetical list of players who averaged fewer than three points per game as a freshman before eventually earning All-American acclaim:
|Eventual All-American||Pos.||School||Freshman Scoring Average|
|Cole Aldrich||C||Kansas||2.8 ppg in 2007-08|
|Lorenzo Charles||F||North Carolina State||2.2 ppg in 1981-82|
|Keith Edmonson||G||Purdue||1.3 ppg in 1978-79|
|Aaron Gray||C||Pittsburgh||1.7 ppg in 2003-04|
|Erick Green||G||Virginia Tech||2.6 ppg in 2009-10|
|Tom Gugliotta||F||North Carolina State||2.7 ppg in 1988-89|
|Roy Hamilton||G||UCLA||1.2 ppg in 1975-76|
|Jeff Jonas||G||Utah||2.8 ppg in 1973-74|
|Ted Kitchel||F||Indiana||1.7 ppg in 1979-80|
|Bob Kurland||C||Oklahoma A&M||2.5 ppg in 1942-43|
|Tom LaGarde||C||North Carolina||2.2 ppg in 1973-74|
|Kenyon Martin||C||Cincinnati||2.8 ppg in 1996-97|
|John Pilch||G||Wyoming||2.4 ppg in 1946-47|
|Thomas Robinson||F||Kansas||2.5 ppg in 2009-10|
|Steve Scheffler||C||Purdue||1.5 ppg in 1986-87|
|Russ Smith||G||Louisville||2.2 ppg in 2010-11|
|Earl Tatum||G-F||Marquette||1.5 ppg in 1972-73|
|Kurt Thomas||F-C||Texas Christian||0.8 ppg in 1990-91|
|Al Thornton||F||Florida State||2.8 ppg in 2003-04|
|B.J. Tyler*||G||DePaul||2.9 ppg in 1989-90|
|Jeff Withey||C||Kansas||1.3 ppg in 2009-10|
*Tyler became an All-American at Texas after transferring to his home state
NOTE: Oregon's Wally Borrevik (1.8 ppg in 1940-41), Wisconsin's Gene Englund (2.3 ppg in 1938-39), California's Darrall Imhoff (0.9 ppg in 1957-58), Kansas' Dean Kelley (0.8 in 1950-51), Purdue's Bob Kessler (2.3 ppg in 1933-34), Notre Dame's Leo Klier (2.7 in 1942-43), Oklahoma A&M's Gale McArthur (2.96 ppg in 1948-49), Notre Dame's Bob Rensberger (1.5 ppg in 1940-41) and Stanford's George Yardley (2.9 ppg in 1947-48) averaged fewer than three points per game as sophomores when freshmen weren't eligible to play varsity basketball before becoming All-Americans.