<
>

Handing out gifts for Christmas

Here comes Santa Claus, here comes Santa Claus ... you've heard of Saint Nick, I get to play Saint Dick, baby!

That's right, time to dish out some gifts. I am ready to climb down the chimney and hand out some goodies ...

I have Christmas wishes for the hoop world.

Santa, please give St. John's coach Steve Lavin a clean bill of health and let him come back on the sidelines. Let him to what he does best, motivates and inspires his Johnnies. Let him get that stamina back and the ability to handle coaching a game.

Down in Tiger country, Santa can give a present to LSU fans. Please have them name the court after coach Dale Brown. He did so many great things down there. He was a charismatic leader who did a phenomenal job while leading the Bayou Bengals. He deserves that special honor.

Santa, down in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, the Tar Heels fans know they have a national championship contender. It is an outstanding team that could win the gold trophy. Santa, please do me a favor and let Kendall Marshall develop a pure jump shot. That would take him to another level since he already has tremendous passing skills.

Santa, let college basketball have Indiana's Cody Zeller stay in school for all four years. He should be like his brother, Tyler and Luke. Please don't let the lure of the NBA drag him away from Bloomington. Tom Crean would love him in that Hoosiers jersey!

It is time to give the little guy some PR, Santa! How about saluting some of the mid-majors, who have proven they can play with the big guys. Look at some of the standout players ... Creighton's Doug McDermott can flat-out play, he has great versatility. You should also give PR to the Davids who have already given trouble to the Goliaths, schools like Murray State, Harvard and Davidson. Fill their stockings up with lots of Ws and the opportunity to play the biggies come tournament time.

Hey Santa, keep Rick Majerus healthy on the sidelines at Saint Louis. His Billikens have already shown a lot with wins over Villanova and Washington. They could have a good year in the underrated A-10. The league deserves more hype too.

It is time for Santa to have the rules committee change the alternate possession. It is especially ridiculous at the end of a game when a defense is penalized for making a good play. That baby has run its course already, and it is time for it to go.

No matter what the reason is, Santa, please have St. Joe's coach Phil Martelli grant a waiver to allow Todd O'Brien to play at UAB. It is a public relations nightmare and time to move on from that situation.

Hey Santa, do what it is right and let Digger Phelps become part of the ring of honor at Notre Dame. He deserves that priviliege.

Santa, how about some national exposure for a few coaches doing a super job. They don't get enough ink, baby! Guys like Gregg Marshall at Wichita State, John Groce at Ohio University and Gary Waters at Cleveland State should get more publicity.

Santa, let a diaper dandy named Kyle Vinales of Central Connecticut State get some ink too!

It is time for the Missouri Valley Conference to get multiple bids to the big dance, so get it done, Santa!

Finally, Santa, give all the fans out there health and happiness in the upcoming year. Let 2012 be as special as can be, baby!