Calipari Will Tweak Platoons in Wake of Poythress Injury

Cal UNCJohn Calipari says he will tweak his famous platoon system in the wake of the season-ending ACL injury to junior forward Alex Poythress.

Derek Willis or Dominique Hawkins could get a chance to become the 10th man in the platoon, beginning with Saturday’s game against UCLA in the CBS Sports Classic.

“Well, what we’ve done is we’re still platooning,” Calipari said Thursday on a conference call. “And what I’m doing is we’ll platoon nine, and we’re going to have time to see if Derek Willis or Dom Hawkins deserve to be in the rotation of 10. I’m not going to take minutes away from any player just to platoon. That’s not the idea. We were platooning for one reason: to try to take care of 10 players.” To read more of this story, click here

Kevin Boyle Says Rutgers Can Be Fixed

The idea that Rutgers basketball can somehow be “fixed” by a magical savior has floated around for years and years.

It’s been a popular theme since at least the time I started working for New Jersey newspapers in 1997.

Kevin Bannon, Gary Waters, Fred Hill Jr., Mike Rice and now Eddie Jordan have all tried to get New Jersey’s state university turned around.

“Why can’t it be UConn?” one person recently asked me.

Theoretically, Rutgers should be good. It’s the state university of New Jersey and can draw upon talent from New York through New Jersey and Philadelphia to Washington, D.C. The school is now part of the Big Ten. To read more of this story, click here

Key Midseason Additions: SMU Waiting on Kennedy, St. John’s on Big Men

NCAA Basketball: NIT Tournament Semifinals-Clemson vs Southern MethodistIt’s that time of year, the mid-semester break, where colleges are adding key players for the second half of the 2014-15 season.

Rob Dauster of NBCSports.com recently put up an excellent list of the “Ten Most Important Midseason Additions.” Here are some additional names and details.

MARKUS KENNEDY, 6-9, RS Jr. F, SMU

Academic issues kept Kennedy off the court for the Mustangs in the first semester, but an SMU source said they hoped to learn his fate soon. Ideally, Kennedy, who averaged 12.4 points and 7.1 rebounds last season, would suit up for Saturday’s nationally televised game at Michigan. SMU coach Larry Brown can only wonder what his team might look like if it had both Kennedy and Emmanuel Mudiay, now playing in China. To read more of this story, click here

Louisville Offers Derryck Thornton, Considering Reclassification

Derryck ThorntonBy CHIP MILLER

Just one day after Louisville head man Rick Pitino met with 2016 Henderson (NV) Findlay Prep point guard Derryck Thornton, news surfaced that Louisville has offered the five-star point guard not only for the 2016 year, which is his current classification, but for the 2015-16 season.

“Louisville has only been recruiting the 6-2, 165-pound point guard for about a week,” Jerry Meyer wrote Wednesday, “but Pitino has not only offered Thornton a scholarship but has also offered him one as a 2015 prospect.” To read more of this story, click here

Frank Jackson Decommits from BYU

By JACK LeGWIN

Frank Jackson has decommitted from BYU, and will open up his recruitment.

The 6-foot-3 combo guard from Lone Peak will still reportedly consider BYU along with UCLA, Duke, Arizona, Arizona State and Stanford, per The Salt Lake Tribune.

According to Scout.com’s Evan Daniels, Jackson will take a visit to Arizona.

Jackson had offers from Arizona State, Utah and BYU when he committed originally.

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25 NBA Teams Expected for Duke-UConn

Thirty-nine NBA personnel from 25 teams will be represented Thursday night at the Izod Center when Duke meets UConn, sources told SNY.tv.

The game is expected to feature a showdown of true centers when Duke’s Jahlil Okafor, the presumed No. 1 pick in the 2015 NBA Draft, takes on UConn’s Amida Brimah, projected as the No. 16 pick in 2016 by DraftExpress.com.

Asked if Okafor’s stock could take a hit if Brimah is able to contain him, one NBA scout said: “It will make no difference if he has any type of success against Okafor. It may help Brimah’s [stock].”

The game will also feature Duke freshman wing Justise Winslow, the projected No. 6 pick in 2015, and Duke freshman point guard Tyus Jones the projected No. 20 pick.

Duke’s Rasheed Suliamon and UConn’s Ryan Boatright and Daniel Hamilton are also considered NBA prospects.

Duke practiced Wednesday at the Nets facility in New Jersey, but the Nets must swap their first-round pick in 2015 with Atlanta if the Nets have a higher pick.

The Knicks (5-22), of course, have the second-worst record in the NBA and currently have a 56 percent chance at a top-3 pick and a 20 percent chance at No. 1.

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Stock Climbing: NBA Scouts Weigh in on Willie Cauley-Stein, Jakob Poeltl, Kevon Looney, D’Angelo Russell

After asking several NBA scouts their thoughts on Kentucky’s Tyler Ulis, Syracuse’s Chris McCullough, Kansas’ Kelly Oubre, St. John’s Rysheed Jordan, Texas’ Jonathan Holmes and Iowa’s Aaron White, we now have an update on several other NBA prospects.

Kentucky’s Willie-Cauley Stein, Utah’s Jakob Poeltl, Ohio State’s D’Angelo Russell and UCLA’s Kevon Looney have all seen their stock rise.

Here’s a breakdown: To read more of this story, click here