- Andy Katz, ESPN Senior Writer
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1. Among the biggest winners of this latest round of realignment will be the men's basketball teams for Boise State and possibly San Diego State. The Broncos might have had a better shot of being a top team in the Big West, but it would be a hard sell to the fans in Boise to bring in UC and Cal-State schools. Boise State coach Leon Rice has the Broncos moving in the right direction, and the momentum is in the Mountain West, not the Big West. Rice said the MWC provides a higher ceiling for the Broncos. Meanwhile, the Aztecs would have dominated the Big West and still might if that plan doesn't change. But the fans of Viejas Arena simply aren't going to be as jazzed for the Big West teams as they would for rivalries with UNLV, New Mexico and I'm anticipating Utah State. Obviously, the power ratings advantage in the MWC versus the Big West isn't comparable.
2. Texas coach Rick Barnes said on our ESPNU college basketball podcast that the staff originally thought Myck Kabongo would be available for the Maui Invitational. Then, as the investigation dragged, the anticipation was 10 games. The Texas staff was stunned initially when Kabongo was ruled to be ineligible for a year before he won an appeal to have the punishment reduced to 23 games for giving false information during a university interview into his May draft workout. Barnes is also an advocate now, that if any of his staff have to talk to the NCAA they must have legal representation present.
3. I'm glad to see VCU and Virginia playing a true home-and-home starting next year, as VCU coach Shaka Smart told us Monday on our podcast. VCU has earned the right to be treated as an equal by the more prestigious state school. Smart said that if he were in the ACC, he wouldn't want to come to the Richmond Coliseum, either. But it's not like Virginia can get anyone to come to Charlottesville for a true home-and-home. The Cavaliers have had schools like Stanford come, but scheduling is never easy for the Cavs, and VCU should always be a power-rating plus.