Wisconsin is the reason Kentucky’s season fell two wins short of undefeated, the Badgers having proved a better No. 1 seed with a 71-64 semifinal victory before a Final Four gathering of 72,238 at Lucas Oil Stadium. Kentucky finished 38-1. That close to perfect. That far away.
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Barry Rohrssen, a former administrative assistant and director of operations at UNLV under Bill Bayno, is in his first season on John Calipari’s staff at Kentucky. “Slice” has made it to the big time. He never won with the Washington Generals. He hasn’t lost with the Wildcats.
“We have a doggone good game,” the Wisconsin coach says before the Final Four. But many critics are frustrated with low scores, inconsistent whistles and micromanaging from the sidelines.
Arizona coach Sean Miller is still oh-for-Final Four attempts, his second-seeded team having been sent home by Wisconsin 85-78 on Saturday.
Sean Miller is arguably the country’s best recruiter not named John Calipari. Miller is also considered an expert coach, having led teams to the Sweet 16 six times and Elite Eight four. But he is also the latest to own this moniker: Best coach not to have reached a Final Four.
Wisconsin rallied late, and because of it will play for a second straight trip to the Final Four, having eliminated North Carolina 79-72 in a West Regional semifinal of the NCAA Tournament. The Badgers will play Arizona, a 68-60 winner over Xavier.
Few remember to take a deep breath and appreciate, which is how we should view the final days of Frank Kaminsky’s college basketball career at Wisconsin. His is the sort of story that makes the NCAA Tournament so special.
UNLV will send seven swimmers to the nationals in Iowa City this weekend. That’s just part of the goal, says coach Jim Reitz, whose teams have won 10 league titles in the past 11 years. He tells them: “Let’s go faster than we have ever gone.”
It’s a little Nicki Minaj one minute and some Brooks & Dunn the next. It’s Elvis, followed by Big & Rich. Quarterbacks make drops to Avicii singing about waking me up when it’s all over. UNLV football coach Tony Sanchez has a little something for everyone.
Despite dwindling win totals, UNLV athletic director Tina Kunzer-Murphy is betting basketball coach Dave Rice can turn around the program in his fifth year and take the Rebels back to the NCAA Tournament. Anything less will be unacceptable.
Larry Eustachy was convinced, adamant, certain of his basketball team’s fate. It wasn’t false bravado, either. He truly believed.
Dave Rice just concluded his fourth season as UNLV’s coach, his second straight without a postseason appearance, and it is no secret that his job is in jeopardy after an 18-15 season. Rice and athletic director Tina Kunzer-Murphy are expected to meet this week.
Steve Alford won’t be climbing any ladder or cutting anything down at the MGM Grand Garden on Saturday after his UCLA team was eliminated by top-seeded Arizona 70-64 in the Pacific 12 Conference tournament semifinals Friday night.
An issue that has tormented the Rebels for most of the Mountain West season did them in again Thursday, when UNLV emerged from its locker room at intermission and promptly gave up a six-point lead, watching helplessly as San Diego State opened the second half on a 12-0 run.
UNLV and San Diego State, who will meet at 6 p.m. Thursday in the Mountain West basketball tournament at the Thomas & Mack Center, have played twice this season, with the Aztecs winning by six and two points. The Rebels had chances to win both games.
Mountain West basketball this season has neither been good enough from top to bottom or in possession of a dominating team to suggest anything is inconceivable as the conference tournament opens today at the Thomas & Mack Center.
Mountain West coaches cut the media out of voting for the all-conference team this year — and neglected to tell the writers. Don’t expect to learn who the coaches nominated or voted for.
They tried it the other way. They sat down with him and the sponsors and everyone else with a say in the matter before the 2012 season and agreed to back off. They did what Kyle Busch would regard as sacrilegious. They asked him to race less.
In defeat, UNLV just might have defined its season-long mantra better than any of its previous 29 games. All In, All Together. And a few players short.
That was then: A group of college basketball players that helped embed into the game a hip-hop culture with how they dressed and what they said and the music blaring from their headphones. They influenced a nation of fans, a team viewed as rebellious by some and yet merchandising giants for corporate America.
How ironic, and absolutely fitting, that on the day family and friends and fans and former players gathered to say a final goodbye to Jerry Tarkanian, it was a person with no UNLV ties that offered the most poignant and memorable tribute.
It has become a common theme around UNLV’s basketball team, this game-by-game analysis by others of Chris Wood. Of his production and attitude and effort and whether that eating motion he makes after sinking a 3-pointer is really necessary or, well, just another level of self-serving folly.
There is something magical about a small town. Something perfectly dreadful and yet charmingly nostalgic. The people of it understand each other, seemingly always straddling a line between love and hate, acceptance and resentment. Until heartache arrives. Then a small town unites.
Cox Pavilion is a midrange jumper from the Thomas & Mack Center, but there was more pushing of the ball and guarding of the dribble and running of set plays in the small gym Wednesday night than we have seen in the big arena of late.
The most anticipated fight in forever will take place May 2 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, which gives us more than two months to dissect every angle and turn over every rock and report on everything. As a starting point, here are five questions to consider about Mayweather-Pacquiao.