Kenny Thompson - The Paper of Montgomery County
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Tuesday, April 23, 2019
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  • Friday, April 19, 2019 4:00 AM
    Romeo Langford has the former; Carsen Edwards the latter.
    While Langford was not the savior some Indiana basketball fans hoped for during his single season in Bloomington – not even winning Big Ten Freshman of the Year honors – he is still listed in the top 15 of many NBA mock drafts.
    Edwards, coming off a record-setting NCAA tournament for Purdue, has cracked the lower part of the first round in those post-tourney mock drafts but is usually mentioned as a scoring spark off the bench for the right team.
    When I was growing up in the 1970s, the NBA wanted proven college players. There were exceptions, notably Moses Malone and Darryl Dawkins who entered the NBA out of high school. Even Larry Bird gave up a chance to enter the NBA a year early to return to Indiana State and lead the Sycamores to the 1979 NCAA championship game against Magic Johnson and Michigan State.
    Johnson gave up his final two years of eligibility to enter the NBA Draft and from then on, it became more common for college basketball’s best players to not complete their four years. Michael Jordan, Isiah Thomas, Charles Barkley, etc.
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  • Friday, April 12, 2019 4:00 AM
    Purdue’s run through the NCAA tournament is one reason why college basketball is must-see TV every March.
    But by coincidence this tournament also showed the worst side of college basketball in prime time during the Sweet 16.
    Auburn. Kentucky. Houston. North Carolina. The field comprising the 2019 Midwest Regional has left a stench on the game in recent years, whether it was fake classes or coaches who have a habit of not following recruiting rules.
    The fact that Auburn’s Bruce Pearl, Kentucky’s John Calipari and Houston’s Kelvin Sampson are working, and thriving today, is shameful. Meanwhile, coaches who have good reputations like Tim Miles at Nebraska, Phil Martelli at Saint Joseph’s (Pa.) and Fran Dunphy at Temple are looking for work because they didn’t win enough.
    While there’s no evidence that Roy Williams knew about the fake classes that kept North Carolina athletes eligible, the mere fact that the Tar Heels got off scot-free two years ago because – to paraphrase the New York Times – the NCAA determined no rules were broken – may be why the FBI and the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York are now attempting to police college basketball. 
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