College Basketball Nation: Tom Odjakjian

3-point shot: More errors in judgment

November, 29, 2012
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1. Clemson's Milton Jennings had better be apologizing to his Tigers teammates for quite some time after his arrest early Wednesday for possession of one ounce or less of marijuana, according to the Anderson (S.C.) Independent Mail. Why? The Tigers played well for a rebuilding club at the Old Spice Classic in Orlando, Fla., and should have protected their home court and beaten Purdue in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge on Wednesday. Instead, the Tigers lost to the Boilermakers by 12. Jennings was averaging a team-high 10.8 points a game. Jennings' lack of leadership had a direct effect on this loss. Meanwhile, Ernie Zeigler, the former Central Michigan coach and father of Pitt forward Trey Zeigler, said his son has apologized to team staff and in person to athletic director Steve Pederson for a DUI over the weekend. Zeigler has been indefinitely suspended by Pitt coach Jamie Dixon. "Trey is a very good kid who made a bad mistake,'' said his father. "He showed very poor judgment. He will be disciplined by the judicial system, currently by coach Dixon and, more importantly, by his parents. We are extremely confident Trey will learn, grow and ultimately respond in the appropriate fashion to the adversity he brought upon himself.''

2. Tulane coach Ed Conroy is confident that the Green Wave can live up to the challenge of playing their games at the New Orleans Arena (capacity 18,500) when they join the Big East rather than playing at the Devlin Fieldhouse (formerly Fogelman), which holds 3,600. Conroy said the setup will be similar to St. John's, which plays its marquee games at Madison Square Garden and other random games on its campus in Queens, N.Y. Conroy said Tulane will play non-conference games at Devlin and Big East games at the home of the NBA's Hornets. Conroy said playing the Big East games at the Hornets' site was part of the deal of admission to the conference. Of course, this further complicates scheduling for the Big East, most notably assistant commissioner Tom Odjakjian. He lost school-controlled arenas at Louisville, Rutgers and Notre Dame in 2014 and '15 and added one in Tulane that nevertheless will be at the mercy of the NBA schedule. Odjakjian also got one campus-controlled arena and one where he'll have to wrestle pro dates away from the NBA with Temple and Memphis, respectively.

3. The frustrations at Texas are bubbling over. Texas gave the NCAA information on Myck Kabongo's paid workout last May (former teammate and current Cleveland Cavalier Tristan Thompson has already been quoted saying he paid for the plane ticket but Kabongo's brother paid him back). The school submitted its paperwork "a while ago,'' according to a source, but no word from the NCAA on any penalty. Texas has already held Kabongo out of six games and the Longhorns are 4-2 in his absence.

3-point shot: Big East-ND ripple effect

September, 14, 2012
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1. Former Big East commissioner Mike Tranghese said that the departure of Notre Dame basketball to the ACC is “more of a perception hit than anything. It has no effect on Big East football." Tranghese said he wasn’t surprised, saying that he told the rest of the league for quite a while that if the Irish could find a conference home, they would leave. The only schools that might be bothered by Notre Dame’s departure are the Big East's non-football schools, “who enjoyed that rivalry."

2. The Big East might not be clamoring for a Notre Dame replacement to go to 18 teams. Associate league commissioner Tom Odjakjian, who handles the scheduling, said that 17 is definitely an easier number to schedule. Scheduling 17 teams means that the Big East would have more flexibility if the league were to go to 18 games in 2013-14, with each team playing every other at least once, and two teams twice. If the Big East went to 18 games with 18 teams, there would only be one team that each team played twice. That’s why Big East was discussing 20 league games, to create more inventory for the league during its television negotiations. Odjakjian has no say on expansion -- he’s looking at this strictly from scheduling.

3. I’m not sure I’ve talked to a coach this summer who is as optimistic as Florida State’s Leonard Hamilton. Hamilton said he loves that the Seminoles aren’t being billed as a lock for a deep NCAA tournament run. But he said this team is more balanced, deeper and has the potential to be even more productive on the offensive end than FSU's previous few teams. He said he loves that the Seminoles continue to be overlooked by the teams in the Triangle.

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