Thursday, January 31, 2013
3-point shot: Rough patch for Ole Miss
By Andy Katz
1. Ole Miss spent Wednesday dealing with a double dose of bad news. The Rebels were still stunned over Nerlens Noel's dominating 12-block performance for Kentucky in a humbling 87-74 home defeat by the Wildcats. Then came word that forward Aaron Jones was done for the season with a left anterior cruciate ligament injury. “The team is really down that AJ is out for the year,’’ said Ole Miss coach Andy Kennedy. “It was a one-point game and Nerlens Noel blocked three straight shots at the rim (two on Murphy Holloway and one on Reginald Buckner) and it was game, set, match. We’ve just got to move forward.’’ Kennedy said the Rebels will replace Jones by committee, since Ole Miss is already down Jason Carter (dismissed), Demarco Cox (stress fracture) and now Jones. Particularly with Nick Williams out indefinitely, too, with a foot injury, Holloway and Buckner will need to stay on the court.
2. Gonzaga coach Mark Few loves the improvement of Kelly Olynyk and doesn’t dismiss his numbers. But Few wants Elias Harris to get his due. Harris has had a sensational career at Gonzaga and has quietly put together an outstanding season, averaging 15.3 points and 7.3 rebounds. Harris has had more than 200 rebounds in each of his first three seasons and will likely make it four in a row. Still, if I had to pick my All-America five, this week I would have Olynyk in my top five.
3. There is so much to be done before the Big East 7 can start their own league, likely in the summer of 2014 when the fall sports start practice. The group has to exit the conference; deal with the financial issues; pick a commissioner; decide on which schools to invite and how many; cut a TV deal; hire staff; pick a location; create bylaws; and make schedules, to name just a few line items.