Credit: Kansas Athletics

Wednesday News and Notes

Breaking down the latest news around college basketball, recruiting, and the NBA

Quentin Grimes has been granted a waiver by the NCAA to play this season at Houston. The former five star recruit had a down year in his freshman season at Kansas when you consider the hype surrounding the player before he got on campus, however he has plenty of talent and this is big for the Cougars. Grimes averaged 8.4 points, 2.5 rebounds, and 2 assists in 27.4 minutes last season. When he shot is going down he is a high level scorer but he just simply did not shoot the ball well, especially on three point attempts as a freshman, something that will need to improve if he has aspirations of being drafted in 2020. There has been talk of him playing more of a lead guard role taking on point guard responsibilities at times for Houston so that is something to watch going forward.

The Associated Press preseason All Americans were released. The list consisted of Cassius Winston (Michigan State), Markus Howard (Marquette), Jordan Nwora (Louisville), Myles Powell (Seton Hall), and James Wiseman (Memphis). Wiseman was the only freshman selected while Nwora is a junior, and Powell, Winston as well as Howard are seniors.

UCONN Freshman guard James Bouknight turned himself in to police after allegedly fleeing the scene of a crash. Bouknight was a four star recruit and is a dynamic play maker with the ball in his hands who has solid athleticism leading to expectations of a major impact in his first season. There is no indication of what punishment will come from the team, but he has bigger problems to deal with than whether or not he can play basketball considering the charges.

2020 international recruit Efe Abogidi has committed to Washington State. Abogidi has come up through the NBA’s youth academy in Africa and although he will immediately be one of, if not the best athlete on the Cougars roster next season. He is very raw overall, but with his athleticism and a 7’4″ wingspan he is a project that has the physical tools to compete, he will just need development from the coaching staff. Abogidi was not ranked by ESPN, Rivals, or 247 Sports in the class of 2020.

2021 recruit JB White will be headed to New Mexico. White is a local product deciding early to stay home in the state, and this is a big pick up for the program. While he does not jump out of the gym he can finish at the rim, and he has good length that allows him to be effective on both sides of the ball. At 6’7″ he can play multiple positions and with outside shooting being one of his strengths he will primarily play on the wing at the college level. White is ranked #84 by Rivals, #35 by 247 Sports, and he is not ranked by ESPN.

Michigan State got some bad news with star guard Josh Langford going down to a foot injury. According to coach Tom Izzo he will not be re-evaluated until January so the team is going to be without him for most of, if not all of the season. Langford played 13 games last season where averaged 15 points, 3.6 rebounds, and 2.3 assists in 28.6 minutes per game before being sidelined with an ankle injury for the rest of the year. The injury means that the role of freshman Rocket Watts is going to increase significantly, especially if Langford does not return the second half of the season.

• The NBA regular season got underway last night, meaning we finally got to see some meaningful basketball played. Toronto took down New Orleans in overtime in what was supposed to be the highly anticipated debut of Zion Williamson, but instead Pascal Siakam and Fred VanVleet stole the show with 34 points a piece. In the second game of the night the Clippers beat the Lakers in the battle of Los Angeles teams where Kawhi Leonard dropped 30, and Anthony Davis led the way for Lakers with 25 points and 10 rebounds.

Dwayne Wade signed with WarnerMedia to join NBA broadcasts on TNT as well as the Final Four in college basketball. This should come as no surprise with Wade being a media savvy player in his playing days, and he should do well in the role. In addition to the on screen roles he will be taking on, he is signed on to a creative director position at Bleacher Report which was purchased by WarnerMedia in 2012.

EA Sports is hoping that the new laws regarding college athletes in California will help pave the way for the company to get back into making college sports games again. Most sports fan that grew up in the 1990’s or the early 2000’s played the games and they were always a good option to have in comparison to the professional games that feature 30 or so teams. There is a long road back before a game is actually made, but with the shifting tide regarding players being able to profit on their likeness, this would be one of the first dominoes to fall if a federal bill was passed.

Amar’e Stoudamire has signed with a Chinese team to continue his career. After 15 seasons in the NBA and last playing in 2015-2016 there has been talk of a possible comeback for the former all-star every summer. Since that point he has played overseas before announcing his retirement and then choosing to participate in the Big3 League.

Chicago signed Max Strus to a two way deal ahead of tonight’s opener. A two way contract means you can spend up to 45 days with the NBA team while still being under contract when you spend the rest of the season with a G League team. Strus put up some solid numbers at Depaul averaging 20.1 points, and 5.9 rebounds at Depaul in his senior year after transferring from D-II school Lewis University.

 

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