Dallas Colleges: Katz 3-point shot

3-point shot: OU a threat in Big 12

September, 26, 2014
Sep 26

Andy Katz looks at the key points that may make Oklahoma a Big 12 contender.

3-point shot: Mudiay spurns SMU

July, 15, 2014
Jul 15

Andy Katz discusses Emmanuel Mudiay's decision to spurn SMU for overseas basketball, Georgia's roster and George Washington's nonconference schedule.

3-point shot: Final look at Kentucky, UConn

April, 7, 2014
Apr 7

Andy Katz takes one final look at the Kentucky Wildcats and the Connecticut Huskies before they square off for the national championship on Monday night.

3-point shot: A look at the selection process

March, 18, 2014
Mar 18

Andy Katz examines the selection process for the NCAA touranment and the NIT.

3-point shot: Baylor's focus on point guard

April, 30, 2013
1. Baylor coach Scott Drew could have had a myriad problems had he lost Cory Jefferson and Isaiah Austin to the NBA draft. Instead, Drew's primary offseason focus is what to do at the point. He has plenty of time to discuss, dissect and analyze over the summer, but his first inkling is to go with a combination of Gary Franklin and Brady Heslip to offset the departure of Pierre Jackson. Other options for Drew are Kenny Chery, a newcomer, or L.J. Rose, who was on the team last season. This is a critical upcoming year for the Bears. The disappointment last season of not making the NCAA tournament was softened by the NIT championship. Now that Jefferson and Austin have returned, there is no excuse if the Bears don't make the 2014 field. The Big 12 will be down a bit with Oklahoma State and Kansas as the top two teams. Baylor has the personnel to beat out Iowa State, Kansas State and Oklahoma. But the onus will be on consistent play upfront and a stable point guard.

2. The UMass-Lowell job is open after Greg Herenda took the head coaching position at Fairleigh Dickinson. The Riverhawks are joining the America East next season but have a four-year waiting period to become eligible for postseason. North Dakota State is one of the best models for how to make this transition when Tim Miles and Saul Phillips set up the Bison to make the NCAAs in their first eligible year in 2009. Bryant University handled a similar transition, and while the Bulldogs didn't make the NCAAs in their first eligible year, Bryant spent a good portion of the 2012-13 season atop the NEC and ended up earning a berth in the CBI. The Riverhawks now have to follow a similar path and to do so have a shot to look at area schools for coaching talent. Former Boston College coach Al Skinner, his former assistant and current Northeastern assistant Pat Duquette and current Emerson head coach Jim O'Brien, who was the head coach at BC prior to Skinner, all could be in the mix for this position, according to sources. This is hardly a headline position, but everyone jumping up from Division II to I wants to make a splash. The America East grabbed UMass-Lowell to replace Boston University in the hope it can penetrate the Boston market, making it even more imperative to win the new conference with a coach that has local ties.

3. Ray McCallum Jr. announced his decision to declare for the NBA draft last week but it got lost amid other headline names making the tough call to stay or go. But don't dismiss the Detroit guard as an afterthought. McCallum Jr. could have easily gone to UCLA but chose to play for his father Ray at Detroit. McCallum will be an intriguing prospect to monitor throughout the team workouts and in Chicago over the next two months. Each decision is personal and that's why to guess what direction a player would go in this process is extremely difficult. McCallum chose to leave his dad's team and head to the NBA. Doug McDermott decided to stay and play for his dad at Creighton for one more year. McCallum, though, could very well end up being a higher pick in a draft that needs quality ball handlers.
Baylor picked up a nationally televised road game with NCAA champion Kentucky, adding again to the Bears' solid schedule for the 2012-13 season. Bears coach Scott Drew said Baylor will also play at Gonzaga in a return game from two years ago in Dallas, and also will host Northwestern and BYU.

The Bears are one of the marquee teams in the Charleston Classic with Murray State, Colorado, St. John’s and Dayton. Auburn, Boston College and the College of Charleston are also in the field.

Baylor will get plenty of power-rating pop for this schedule, especially with the addition of Kentucky. No one should be surprised that the return game is in a neutral setting at Cowboys Stadium as part of a unique doubleheader with the schools' women's programs in December 2013.

3-point shot: Closing transfer loopholes

May, 11, 2012
1. The National Association of Basketball Coaches board of directors met with NCAA president Mark Emmert on Thursday in Indianapolis and, according to at least one source in the room, there is support to close up a few transfer loopholes. The coaches and Emmert discussed making any player who wants to transfer sit out a year, even if he or she has graduated and is seeking a waiver to play immediately at a school that has a graduate program that isn’t available at the current school. The discussion also turned to the waiver that allows a player to play immediately if a relative is ill. That, too, could be closed. The consensus among the coaches is that if anyone transfers, he should sit out a year, even if that means a sixth year in college. The coaches also wanted some sort of universal language on transfer restrictions, maybe even an NCAA rule that forbids transferring within a league. Conferences and schools create their own policies on restricting transfers. According to the NCAA spokesperson, Emmert is going to put together a process to review and make recommendations that includes coaches' input.

2. North Texas athletic director Rick Villarreal said Thursday night that he has a policy that he doesn’t release players who have signed with North Texas or leave the program during their career. Conversely, he won’t allow his coaches, even new ones like men’s basketball coach Tony Benford, to cut a player based on ability. He said the only way a player will be released is if there is an academic or behavior issue. This is relevant because signee John Odoh may want to follow former coach Johnny Jones to LSU. Villarreal said Odoh hasn’t asked for a release yet. If he does, don’t expect a release -- or at least not one to LSU. Villarreal was adamant that Odoh was recruited by Jones with Mean Green funds. Players may leave, but without a release, meaning they would then have to pay their own scholarships.

3. Incoming NCAA tournament selection committee chair Mike Bobinski said that 2013 East Regional sites were discussed Thursday in Indianapolis, and that a decision is due in two weeks. Syracuse and Brooklyn, N.Y., appear to be the favorites. The initial four candidates also included New York City (Madison Square Garden) and Newark, N.J. MSG is booked. Newark hasn’t been eliminated yet.

3-point shot: Why did Johnson leave LSU?

April, 9, 2012
1. It will be interesting to hear how Trent Johnson explains why he’s leaving LSU for TCU. Comparing these two basketball jobs isn’t close. LSU has a rich history in the sport. TCU does not. LSU plays in the SEC where there is constant stability, access to a wider talent pool, and plenty of money. TCU joins the Big 12 in the fall where the Horned Frogs should feel more at home, but still aren’t close to the top of the pecking order in the state. Johnson was coaching at a high level when he was at Stanford. He took a gamble by leaving his native West for the Southeast but he left too soon. The money was more at LSU and reportedly even more so at TCU. But the best job he had for him was at Stanford.

2. Now LSU athletic director Joe Alleva needs to make the right hire to replace Johnson. North Texas coach Johnny Jones has strong ties to LSU and to the region. Jones tried to get the job before Johnson but to no avail. He has done wonders at North Texas, a school that is consistently in the Sun Belt chase. Alleva went out of region in luring Johnson from Stanford. This time, he should go with someone familiar with the area and especially the SEC. This is a critical time in the league: the addition of Missouri and Texas A&M, Frank Martin now coaching at South Carolina, and an increase to 18 conference games. Not to mention, of course, the dominant teams already at the top of the league led by Kentucky, Florida and Vanderbilt.

3. Thomas Robinson is a great example of a player who maxed out his career in college over a three-year period and is now ready to play in the NBA. He wasn’t a year ago. He had an exemplary season, led Kansas to the national title game, and now enters the NBA as a player who can contribute, not just be a high draft pick.

3-point shot: Baylor relishes BYU matchup

December, 16, 2011
Baylor coach Scott Drew said he relishes the idea of playing at BYU’s Marriott Center on Saturday for what will easily be the Bears’ toughest game to date. The Cougars have been nearly unbeatable, with one loss in the past 49 games at the Marriott Center. BYU coach Dave Rose said the Cougars will have to pick up the pace to get space on rebounding against the Bears.

BYU likely won’t be able to rebound in the halfcourt against Baylor’s length (see Perry Jones III and Quincy Acy). This game has to be up and down for BYU to have a shot. Meanwhile, the Bears get Cal transfer guard Gary Franklin eligible for this game, deepening an already solid perimeter.