Bozeman awaits word on suspension

January, 13, 2012

Quick hitters on a Friday:

• Morgan State coach Todd Bozeman said Friday that athletic director Floyd Kerr told him that the committee that met to discuss his incident submitted its findings to the acting vice president of student affairs. Bozeman is now awaiting a response. The Bears play Norfolk State on Saturday and Hampton on Monday. Bozeman denies that he struck his own player (Larry Bastfield) during a game at South Carolina State. He was pulled from the road trip and not allowed to go to Savannah State. Bozeman remains indefinitely suspended until further notice.

• An NCAA spokesperson said Friday that UAB submitted new information to a subcommittee dealing with waivers and appeals on behalf of former Saint Joseph's center Todd O'Brien. O'Brien graduated from Saint Joe's and wanted to play at UAB, where he said he found a graduate school major not available to him at Saint Joe's. The Hawks didn't endorse his transfer, which, according to the NCAA, was used as one of the reasons for denying O'Brien's waiver to play for the Blazers.

O'Brien has been practicing with the Blazers throughout the fall and into the winter. UAB coach Mike Davis said he doesn't understand why Saint Joe's, and especially coach Phil Martelli, won't sign off on O'Brien's waiver, which has been denied multiple times. A Saint Joseph's spokesperson, in defense of the PR hit Martelli is taking on the subject, said that the decision was made by the institution, not Martelli. The spokesperson said Martelli didn't have the option of simply saying "yes" or "no." Saint Joseph's won't comment on the O'Brien case anymore, citing privacy laws. The NCAA spokesperson said a decision by the subcommittee is due next week.

• The NCAA tournament selection committee met in Indianapolis on Thursday and then took in the Wisconsin-Purdue game in West Lafayette, Ind. The committee is being led by former Connecticut athletic director and current Big East consultant, Jeff Hathaway. Oklahoma athletic director Joe Castiglione took the place of former Big 12 commissioner Dan Beebe on the committee. The committee members are supposed to be impartial and, of course, they should get out and see as many games as possible. That's why the visual of Wisconsin's win was probably a huge plus for the Badgers. Wisconsin had struggled mightily recently, including losing at home to Iowa, but the Badgers shot the ball well in their win over the Boilermakers. That's a lasting memory for the committee when the Badgers come up for discussion.

Arnett Moultrie should go down as the most impactful four-year transfer this season. His arrival at Mississippi State from UTEP is a game-changer for the Bulldogs. Moultrie's shot-blocking and shot-altering presence ensures the Bulldogs won't fade.

• I will be interested to see how the selection committee judges Murray State if the Racers are undefeated in the regular season or have one to two losses. The Racers will get a quality opponent in the BracketBusters event, possibly one of the following teams: Saint Mary's, Nevada or Long Beach State. The comparison I've made is to a two-loss George Washington team from the Atlantic 10 in 2006. The committee dinged the Colonials on their nonconference slate, and they received a No. 8 seed. I would put the Racers higher if they finish with an impressive record, but I'm not sure the committee would view it the same way if they strictly look at the strength of schedule of their opponents. The road win at Memphis and beating Southern Miss in Alaska will help, but how much?

• The Colonial Athletic Association may not get an at-large bid this season, but it will have quite a league race. Drexel beat George Mason on Thursday night, handing the Patriots their first loss of the season in conference play. Georgia State has been the surprise thus far. And VCU is still more than capable of winning the conference along with the aforementioned teams. I was probably wrong on Old Dominion. I thought after the Missouri game that the Monarchs would still be a contender. That might not be the case.

• When ESPN analyst Len Elmore had Virginia's Mike Scott as ACC Player of the Year a few weeks ago, I immediately thought of other choices. Looking at things now, he may be right. No other player in the ACC has been as important to his team. Take Scott off the Cavs and they have no shot to be a top-three team league.

• Saint Mary's took advantage of the front-loaded schedule by knocking off BYU and Gonzaga at home. The Gaels have to return the games later in the season. I still think the Zags are better-suited for a deeper March run, maybe more so than any other team in the West. Gonzaga has a hot hand in Kevin Pangos from the 3-point land, and multiple forward scoring options in Robert Sacre, Sam Dower and Guy Landry Edi, as well as a tough matchup with slasher Elias Harris. Having David Stockton in the game gives the Zags a steady hand at the point and someone to make free throws late.

Andy Katz | email

ESPN Senior Writer



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