Archives for February 2011

DePaul Loses Cleveland Melvin for the Season


DePaul head coach Oliver Purnell announced today that freshman Cleveland Melvin will miss the remainder of the 2010-11 season with a left thumb sprain. Melvin injured the thumb in DePaul’s game at St. John’s on Feb. 23 and missed Saturday’s game against USF.

Melvin, a BIG EAST Rookie of the Year candidate, leads the Blue Demons and all BIG EAST freshmen with 14.3 points per game this season. In BIG EAST play, the Baltimore native has been ranked in the league’s top 10 all season with his scoring average of 17.4 points per outing. Melvin has recorded 19 games in double-figures this season and eight games of at least 20 points.

Included among his top performances are a 25-point, 12-rebound double-double against No. 10/9 Connecticut on Jan. 15 and a 29-point, seven-rebound outing at #9/9 Georgetown on Jan. 1. The four-time BIG EAST Rookie of the Week honoree has also totaled 40 blocked shots this season to rank 16th on DePaul’s season blocked shots list and has 11 games with multiple blocked shots.

In BIG EAST games only, Melvin is ranked in the top 15 in offensive rebounding (third – 3.33 orpg), scoring (sixth – 17.4 ppg), field goal percentage (ninth – .511), blocked shots (12th – 1.33 bpg) and rebounding (15th – 6.3 rpg).

There was some good news however:

Brandon Young picked up the slack with a 23-point outing against the Bulls and was rewarded Monday morning with his second BIG EAST Rookie of the Week honor this season. Young and Melvin have combined to earn the honor six times in 15 weeks during the 2010-11 campaign.


Since the start of the 2005-06 season that followed expansion of the BIG EAST, DePaul is the third team with six or more Rookie of the Week winners. The 2005-06 Marquette team totaled seven winners while Syracuse had six honorees during the 2007-08 season. The final 2010-11 Rookie of Week will be announced next Monday.

Young scored 23 points against the Bulls on Saturday on 10-of-17 shooting from the field. It was his third game with 20 or more points and he registered a conference-scoring high with the 23 points.

For the week, the Baltimore native averaged 14.0 points and 2.5 assists. Young totaled five points with three assists and two steals at St. John’s on Wednesday.

Notre Dame Blows Out Villanova on Senior Night 93-72

#9 Notre Dame came out of the gates shooting red hot from behind the arc, and the initial surge set the evening’s tone. #14 Villanova was never able to catch their breath and catch up, as they spent pretty much the entire first twenty minutes with half as many points on the scoreboard as the Irish.

ND was especially fired up for their Senior night as they happen to start all seniors (Ben Hansbrough, Tim Abromaitis, Tyrone Nash, Carleton Scott, Scott Martin). Hansbrough got the biggest ovation of all, as the Purcell Pavilion crowd was extremely fired up all night. Interestingly, Scott, Martin and Abro all return a fifth and final year of eligibility next season.

And the Irish gave the Joyce Center crowd plenty of reason to ignite, as they hit their first five treys and shot 58% (11-19) from three in the first half. Nova, by contrast was just 2-10 from behind the arc, and therefore found themselves trailing 47-27 at halftime.

By Paul M. Banks

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Bob Knight Headlines College Basketball Hall of Fame

bob knight chair

Two of the Atlantic Coast Conference’s greatest players – Virginia’s Ralph Sampson and North Carolina’s James Worthy, are part of the 2011 National College Basketball Hall of Fame induction class. Joining Sampson and Worthy for enshrinement will be coaches Bob “The General” Knight (for the greatest Knight exclusive interview in history go here) and Eddie Sutton, players Cazzie Russell and Chris Mullin and contributors Joe Vancisin and Eddie Einhorn.

The Class of 2011 will be inducted into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame Sunday, November 20, 2011, at the Midland Theatre in Kansas City as part of a three-day celebration of college basketball.  On November 21-22, Missouri, California, Georgia and Notre Dame will compete at Sprint Center in the CBE Classic.

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Ohio State’s Forgotten Freshman, Deshaun Thomas

Deshaun Thomas

Blind resumes are ever-so popular this time of year in college basketball with Selection Sunday nearing. Instead of comparing two teams, let’s compare the per game averages of Player A and Player B:

Player A – 18.2 min, 11.7 pts, 5.4 rebs

Player B – 12.5 min, 4.9 pts, 2.7 rebs

Per game, Player A has played 25 percent more minutes, scored nearly three times as much, and grabbed twice as many boards as Player B.

By: Justin Mertes-Mistretta

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Big Ten Basketball Power Rankings 2-28-11


When doing a Big Ten Power rankings this time of year, there’s three tiers. You have your top three teams, a force to be reckoned with in national college basketball. Then you have this muddled mix of mediocre blah. Some of it will rise to the cream, and possibly make a run in March because this is kind of a down year nationally.

Some of the muddled mass is just blahhhh ughh though; but those teams will get a tourney bid anyway because expanding the field by three (although the perfect move at the perfect time, making the field more even and eliminating the condescending play-in game) has actually watered down the bracket much more than anyone anticipated.

Then there’s the third tier- which is just…kind of ugly.

By Paul M. Banks

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Milwaukee Brewers Weekly Check-In (2-28-11)

If you’re not one of those baseball nerds who follows every single thing going on in the Milwaukee Brewers Organization, don’t worry, because The Sports Bank’s Nick Grays has you covered with what happened in the past week and what’s going on in the future.

And if you are one of those nerds, feel free to join in on some good old analysis of America’s pastime in the Brew City.

This week we talk about the excitement brewing around ticket sales, St. Louis Cardinals RHP Adam Wainwright’s Injury and the upcoming week in Cactus League play!

By: Nick Grays
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Big East Basketball Power Rankings (2/28/11)

syracuse orange mascot

The college basketball regular season is coming to an end but there is still plenty of jockeying for position in the Big East standings heading into the conference tournament.  And as it stands, 11 teams figure to make the NCAA Tournament.  Here are my updated Big East Power Rankings.

By: David Kay

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Is Penn State Going to Make the NCAA Tournament?

penn state cheerleader

It’s certainly a bubblicious time of the year in college basketball; and it’s only going to get more bubbly from here. When you first glance at Penn State, you may wonder how their 15-12, 8-8 in the Big Ten record gets them placed on the dance card.

Look closer and you’ll see a phenomenal #6 strength of schedule and a decent #53 RPI.

“That’s the most important thing to me, when I leave I want to say that I had the opportunity to play in the NCAA Tournament, see what it feels like. That would be the greatest achievement,” said PSU senior guard Talor Battle, following a decisive win at Northwestern.

By Paul M. Banks

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Wisconsin 78, Northwestern 63: Rapid Reaction

With the season-sweep of the Northwestern Wildcats, the #12 Wisconsin Badgers have won their 19th straight at home and finished a perfect 16-0 at the Kohl Center in 2010-11. For the Badgers (22-7, 12-4), it’s only the third time they’ve completed an undefeated home schedule in 80 years.

The Wildcats (16-12, 6-11) didn’t make it easy for Wisconsin as they pulled within three points late in the second half, but it was Jon Leuer who didn’t disappoint on Senior Night while going for a game-high 26 points.

By: Nick Grays

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Columbus Blue Jackets 3rd Qtr Report Card


During the past two seasons, I assessed how the Columbus Blue Jackets performed as a team at the first quarter of the season. Sadly, as the Blue Jackets’ performance plummeted during the remaining three quarters of last season, and as the Blue Jackets nearly repeated that ignominious feat during the second quarter of this season, I honestly didn’t think I’d have the opportunity to assess their performance for the third quarter of this season.

But, boy was I wrong!

By Ed Cmar

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Offseason Grading: The Detroit Tigers

The Tigers had two things that is the recipe for success on most teams. They had a power-hitter that also hits for average in Miguel Cabrera and the team had an ace in Justin Verlander.

So, what went wrong? Why did the team finish 81-81? Is Miguel Cabrera drinking an alcoholic beverage? These are all questions that need to be addressed.

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