NBA Mock Draft Second Round 3/25/17

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Here is The Sports Bank’s 2017 NBA Mock Draft.  Outstanding trades have not been taken into account with the second round.

(Updated: 3/23/17)

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2017 NFL Mock Draft 3-23-17

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Time for another 2017 NFL mock draft update.

The Sports Bank is the only independently owned, mom and pop on the internet with a mock draft for the top four American professional sports leagues. Be sure to check out our 2017 NFL mock draft, 2016 NBA mock draft, 2016 MLB mock draft and 2016 NHL mock draft.

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2017-18 Illini Basketball Very Early Season Preview

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On to the Brad Underwood era now.

Period.

There is no need for a NIT recap and/or analysis, or an unnecessary and elongated intro here. Let’s just dive right in to the way too early 2017-18 Illini basketball season preview.

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Josh Whitman Has Augmented University of Illinois Athletics at Every Level

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In the sporting world, it’s very rare that one gets blown away by an interview. It’s a land of cliche and corporatespeak,where the overwhelming majority of media opportunities are extremely forgettable. With a backdrop like this, the intellectualism and ambition of Illinois Athletic Director Josh Whitman becomes even more striking.

If you’ve ever say down with Whitman one-on-one you can tell within the first few seconds of meeting him that he’s on the ball.

He’s a man with a plan, and everything about his presentation as speaker is a reminder of how he was valedictorian of his high school class in West Lafayette, Indiana.

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Brad Underwood is the Perfect Embodiment of the Illinois “We Will Win” Mantra

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All introductory press conferences are essentially product launches- nothing more, nothing less. You already know this basic truth when you tune in, or in some cases, show up in person, to see the product rollout take place. You check in not for actual news (that’s already been broken days ago) but for the details.

You already know the gist of it coming in, but the intro presser session is all about the details. It’s like a summer blockbuster action movie- you’re fully aware that the hero is going to win eventually, but you watch anyway to see what weapons and vehicles he utilizes. Intro pressers are what they are, and there’s never really a legitimate reason to have very strong feelings either way, about an intro presser. 

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Brad Underwood Gives Illini Basketball Exactly What they Need- a Program Rebuilder

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Illini basketball needs a program rebuilder, and that’s EXACTLY what they got when they hired Brad Underwood from Oklahoma State. The now former Cowboys mentor has won everywhere that he’s been, at every level of the coaching ranks, and he’s done it by taking what he’s been given, and elevating it significantly.

From the Community College level (this is a big day for Dodge City Conquistadors and Daytona State Falcons everywhere) to the Southland Conference to the Big 12, Underwood has gotten it done, and done so with an exciting brand of basketball.

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Butler Coach Chris Holtmann RIPS Illinois for Firing John Groce

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You can cross Butler’s Chris Holtmann off the potential Illinois Fighting Illini coaching candidates. Not that he was ever really was in contention to begin with, but there have been a lot of know-nothing blowhards in Illini nation claiming through their “sources” that Holtmann was in the mix.

Those sad “insider” wannabes can take a seat now, upon hearing what Chris Holtmann had to say about the Illini program “they don’t care,” as he stuck up for his very close friend, the recently fired John Groce.

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Cuonzo Martin Goes to Mizzou, Not Illinois: Purdue Boilermakers Fan Reaction

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On Wednesday afternoon the news broke that Cuonzo Martin was resigning his position as Head Coach at California. At the same, we learned that Martin was off to coach Missouri, signing a deal reportedly worth $21 million over three years, and not Illinois. It’s the second time that Cuonzo Martin was potentially going to be an Illini, only to go elsewhere.

As a player, he was reportedly set to join Lou Henson’s program, but changed his mind after Bruce Pearl broke the coaching fraternity code, secretly taped Deon Thomas, ratted him out and landed the Illinois program on probation. Martin opted for Purdue instead, where he went on to have a very distinguished career.

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What We Learned from the Josh Whitman Presser on Illini Basketball Regime Change

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University of Illinois Athletic Director Josh Whitman held a press conference today on the heels of the announcement that Illini basketball Coach John Groce would be relieved of duties (full story and details at this link). Here some of the major takeaways from the session, and important points to consider moving forward.

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Illini Basketball Expediently Moves on From John Groce; Swift Action Taken

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The backlash against Illini basketball Head Coach John Groce was extremely strong.

How strong? Well, once news of his dismissal was officially made public at 2:45 PM CST on Saturday March 11th, 2017, the term “John Groce” quickly shot up to the #2 overall trending term in the United States on Twitter.

So much for the idea that the Illini basketball community was apathetic. Despite the very poor attendance, and relegation to much lower profile television broadcasts of Illinois games in recent years, Illini basketball nation is very much engaged and zealous.

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Five Potential Illini Basketball Head Coaching Candidates

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(Update: second list, featuring six more names added to the list)

Having missed three straight NCAA Tournaments, with a fourth consecutive absence almost certain, Illini basketball fans have traversed a very dark journey in the John Groce era. For many, frustration became anger, which then gave way to apathy.

Unless you’re discussing the idea of replacing Groce.

For Illini basketball fans, it’s not just the main topic, it is THE topic. While it may seem a bit unprofessional at best, career ghoulish at worst, to discuss the end of the Groce era while he still has a month to go, it’s necessary.

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Six More Illini Basketball Head Coaching Candidates

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As the Illini basketball season winds down, there’s only one topic on everybody’s mind- who will replace Head Coach John Groce.

Last week we did a piece exploring five potential replacements and since we published it, everybody and their brother (aside from the BTN, as that’s a marketing/promotional tool of the league where alternative facts reign) who covers, or even follows this team has written an Illini basketball head coaching candidates piece.

There’s currently a raging bull market for discussion on this topic as thus we commence our sequel- “six more Illini basketball head coaching candidates.”

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