Will Tennessee now turn to Donnie Tyndall?

Gary Parrish of CBS Sports is reporting that Louisiana Tech coach Mike White has cooled on the idea of becoming Tennessee’s next coach and that the Vols might turn to former Morehead State coach Donnie Tyndall, who is at Southern Miss.

White signed a six-year, $3.6 million contract extension this month with Louisiana Tech. He apparently is happy with the security that new contract offers. What does it say, however, when a coach in Conference USA decides that he would rather stay in that conference than go to the SEC?

Tyndall has won 56 games the past two seasons at Southern Miss, taking the Golden Eagles to consecutive NITs. As coach at Morehead State, he engineered the upset of Louisville in the round of 64 during the 2011 NCAA Tournament.

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Video: Neal Brown talks about UK offense

After practice this morning, Kentucky offensive coordinator Neal Brown gave the media an update on how things are going with his banged-up offense.

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Video: Mark Stoops on his injured receivers

Kentucky coach Mark Stoops talks to the media after spring practice this morning. Stoops said the injuries are starting to accumulate for his wide receiver corps.

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BBL: Tennessee reportedly focusing on Mike White

Big Blue Links for Monday:

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Adam Silver says raising age limit a top priority

New NBA Commissioner Adam Silver tells Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com that he is not only in favor of increasing the league age limit from 19 to 20, he wants to make a top priority.

Silver said the NBA’s Board of Governors talked wit NCAA President Mark Emmert about steps that could be taken to make that happen.

“If we’re going to be successful in raising the age from 19 to 20, part and parcel in those negotiations goes to the treatment of players on those college campuses and closing the gap between what their scholarships cover and their expenses,” Silver said. “We haven’t looked specifically at creating a financial incentive for them to stay in college. That’s been an option that has been raised over the years, but that’s not something that is on the table right now.”

UK coach John Calipari said Thursday that he is in favor of moving the age limit from 19 to 20 so players would have to stay in college for two years.

Windhorst said that if the Players Association agrees, the change could come as early as the 2016 NBA Draft.

Posted in College hoops, NBA |

Video: Mark Stoops talks about practice

UK football coach Mark Stoops talks to the media this morning after his team’s spring practice. Stoops said the offense took a step back. He said the defense made plays, but part of that had to do with ineffectiveness by the offense.

The team gets the Easter weekend off before its final week of drills. The Blue-White Spring Game is set for Saturday, April 26.

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Next year’s pre-season No. 1 spot up in the air

With Duke announcing this morning that Rodney Hood is indeed following teammate Jabari Parker into the pro ranks, there appears to be some wavering on the previous consensus that the Blue Devils will be pre-season No. 1 going into the 2014-15 college basketball season.

If the Harrison twins do indeed decide to return to Lexington for another year, and especially if Dakari Johnson commits to a sophomore season, Kentucky could overtake Mike Krzyzewski’s club for the top spot in the pre-season polls.

Duke has the No. 1 recruiting class coming to campus next fall, but UK’s class is not too shabby either. Now add the Harrison’s experience with the returning size of Johnson, Willie Cauley-Stein and Marcus Lee and a real debate breaks out.

And what if Julius Randle returns? Sorry, not going to happen.

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#AskEmmert turns into another NCAA disaster

If you want to get your Easter weekend off to a fun start, hit the #AskEmmert button on Twitter, or search the hashtag.

The NCAA had the bright idea of taking Twitter questions for NCAA president Mark Emmert Friday morning on ESPN’s Mike and Mike. And Twitter all but exploded.

You can also listen to Emmert’s interview.


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Big Blue Links for April 18

Big Blue Links for Friday:

At his press conference Thursday morning, John Calipari said that the NCAA blocked an idea in which the Kentucky coach and his wife would set up a fund to help the education of his former players’ children. The NCAA deemed that an extra benefit.

Mark Story writes that Calipari also presented the case Thursday that it’s OK for his players to return for another year. “Most were shocked when Kentucky center Willie Cauley-Stein announced Monday that he would not enter the 2014 draft and would return to UK for his junior season. The 7-foot shot-blocker was being projected as a certain first-round pick, even given some chance to make the back end of the lottery. Calipari asked reporters for a show of hands on who was surprised by Cauley-Stein’s decision. The coach then raised his own.”

Peyton Manning was among Nick Saban’s spring guests at Alabama.

Auburn quarterback Nick Marshall has improved this spring. All Marshall did last season was take the Tigers to the national championship game.

Kentucky’s four basketball signees will be on display tonight in the Jordan Brand Classic. Karl-Anthony Towns, Trey Lyles, Tyler Ulis and Devin Booker have all been in Brooklyn this week.

Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch writes that Frank Haith and Missouri was a marriage of inconvenience. Now Haith is headed to Tulsa. “Haith’s teams were allegedly out of control on offense and indifferent on defense. Flip Pressey hijacked the 2012-13 team. This season’s bunch played with little obvious passion. After attendance dipped dramatically at Mizzou Arena, failing to land an invite to last month’s Big Dance put the head hoops coach on notice.”

Meet Tennessee’s one-man search committee for finding a replacement for departed basketball coach Cuonzo Martin. David Climer gives the lowdown on Dave Hart. “Hart has been down this road before. His search for a football coach was a bit of a mess, but it turned out fine. He spent far too much time pursuing Mike Gundy, who wasn’t going to leave Oklahoma State, and then made the mistake of offering the job to someone he assumed — incorrectly — would accept it: Louisville’s Charlie Strong.”

Posted in SEC, UK basketball |

Two down, many more NBA decisions to go

James Young to the NBA was almost a dead-solid certainty. Kentucky announced Thursday afternoon that the freshman guard will put his name in the draft. The Michigan native is the first Cat to make it official.

Expect Julius Randle to follow suit soon. And there are reports that the Harrison twins are giving serious consideration to returning to Lexington, but I still think that the duo will decide to move on to the play-for-pay game next season.

After that, word is that Alex Poythress is giving serious consideration to moving on to the professional ranks, be it NBA, overseas or even the D-League. We could know more of Poythress’s plans after his weekend.

There has also been talk that with Willie Cauley-Stein announcing his return, and signee Karl-Anthony Towns Jr. set to arrive on campus in the fall, Dakari Johnson might decide to take the leap. I don’t think that will happen, however. I think Dakari knows he needs some work and look for John Calipari to use a lot of twin-tower sets next season.

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