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    Wednesday, May 28, 2008

    Athlon Pics WVU 7th in Preseason Poll

    Athlon decides to give WVU a top 10 ranking yet again. Has some nice things to say about the team and have discovered that there is a player named Pat White on the team. You can click on the link and read the full article. But here are some notes from the brief article:
    West Virginia superlatives:
    OL Ryan Stanchek is named First-Team All-America and First-Team All-Big East.RB Noel Devine is named Second-Team All-America and First-Team All-Big East.QB Pat White and OL Greg Isdaner are named Third-Team All-America and First-Team All-Big East.LB Reed Williams and K Pat McAfee are named First-Team All-Big East.C Mike Dent and S Quinton Andrews are named Second-Team All-Big East.OL Jake Figner, OL Selvish Capers, DL Scooter Berry, LB Mortty Ivy, LB J.T. Thomas, P Pat McAfee and KR Noel Devine join the All-Big East Third Team.

    Nothing really shocking but some nice pub.
    Da Geek

    Friday, May 23, 2008

    More on Alexander

    Here's Chad Ford's take on Alexander from ESPN:

    Joe Alexander, F, West Virginia
    [+] Enlarge

    AP Photo/Jeff Gentner
    Joe Alexander thrived when Bob Huggins came to Morgantown.
    Alexander could very well be the sleeper in the 2008 NBA draft. At the beginning of the year, he was barely on NBA radar screens. Now many teams consider him a potential lottery pick.
    How could a 21-year-old junior playing at West Virginia come out of nowhere to make such a splash in the draft? It's par for the course for Alexander, who spent most of his life growing up and playing ball in China. Alexander's father, Steve, worked overseas and Joe practiced his trade shooting jumpers at an international school in Beijing.
    Steve said that Alexander would spend hours in the basement dribbling a basketball with headphones on. One time, he and his wife left to go shopping. He yelled at Alexander in the basement and told him they'd be right back. Three hours later they returned and Alexander was still in the basement, dripping with sweat, still dribbling the basketball.
    "Joe didn't really have a girlfriend in school," Steve said. "If he could've dated his basketball, then I guess, he would have dated. Basketball has always been his one true love."
    At 16, Alexander came back to the United States to play high school basketball in Maryland, but was lightly recruited his senior year and enrolled in prep school to try to get more buzz.
    "I had two sons that were excellent players but just weren't recruited because they grew up playing ball overseas," Steve said. "I knew Joe was a prodigy and we needed to find a way to get him in the system."
    Alexander struggled his first two years at West Virginia, where the super-athletic forward was basically relegated to the role of jump shooter. But when Bob Huggins became the head coach at West Virginia, Alexander's role and life changed forever.
    "Coach Huggins really taught me the game, he pushed me to be tougher, more aggressive and to broaden my game," Alexander said.
    The results were impressive. By March, Alexander was dominating the Big East. He had 32 points and 10 rebounds versus UConn, 32 and 6 versus Pitt, 29 and 10 versus St. John's. Another 34 and 7 versus UConn in the Big East tournament. Two strong performances in the NCAA tournament had scouts starting to talk about Alexander as a legitimate first-round pick.
    Since the tournament ended, his legend has kept growing. For the past couple of weeks, reports out of Abunassar's gym have said that Alexander's athleticism was off the charts. He was an untapped treasure who was getting better and better by the day. By the time I hit Vegas, I had four different GMs call me to tell me he was going to be a lottery pick.
    Could he live up to the hype? Yes, mostly.
    Alexander's athleticism is jaw-dropping. He has a huge vertical jump and explodes off the floor. He has a little scar on his forehead just above his eyes where he hit his head on the rim in a dunk contest.
    Joe Alexander's March Madness
    Something clicked for Joe Alexander when the calendar turned to March. Over the first 27 games of the season, the West Virginia forward had averaged 14.5 PPG.
    But after March 1, Alexander stepped up his game when it counted most, averaging 23.9 PPG. During that span, he ranked fourth in the nation in scoring among those who played at least six games.
    NCAA Scoring Leaders Since Mar. 1 (min. 6 games)
    Stephen Curry, Davidson
    Michael Beasley, Kansas State
    Rob McKiver, Houston
    Joe Alexander, West Virginia
    O.J. Mayo, USC
    Where his leaping ability is really impressive is on his jump shot. He gets unbelievable elevation on his jumper. His jump shot is really a jump shot. With his huge leaping ability and high release -- it's virtually impossible to block.
    Alexander showed excellent range on his jumper, draining NBA 3s with ease and showing a solid ability to shoot off the dribble. He still scissor-kicks a bit when he shoots which can throw him off balance, but as he smoothes out his form, he looks to be a deadly shooter.
    People looking at his shaky 3-point shooting percentages in college might disagree with that assessment. He has not been a very accurate 3-point shooter in games.
    That held somewhat true in a three-on-three matchup that pitted
    Alexander versus Florida's Marreese Speights. Alexander struggled with Speights' height advantage and missed the majority of his shots. However, he warmed up a little at the end and hit a few big shots down the stretch for his team.
    Alexander's problem, both during the season and in the scrimmage, is that he gets rushed in a game setting at times and he doesn't always pay attention to detail. All of that can be corrected and Alexander showed this year that he's learning. He came back in the afternoon workout session determined to play better and rarely missed a basket.
    Alexander continues to add strength while keeping off the fat. He had just 6 percent body fat and, according to Abunassar, is one of the strongest kids he's working with. He measured out well with a height of 6-foot-7¾ in socks and 6-foot-9 in shoes. He also has great speed running up and down the floor. His lateral quickness is also excellent.
    The other thing to like about Alexander is his aggressiveness. He can play a little nasty at times, shows a lot of competitiveness and isn't afraid to take on anyone. In a light moment, he started sizing up his competition in the draft and predicted he would beat them in team workouts.
    Alexander still needs to work on his consistency and ball handling but he's a very intriguing prospect. He should provide direct competition to the other two top small forward prospects in the draft -- Italy's Danilo Gallinari and Syracuse's Donte' Greene.
    It will be interesting to see where teams go. Gallinari is the anti-Alexander. He's got high basketball IQ without the elite athleticism of Alexander. Greene is in a similar situation with Alexander -- an athletic small forward still trying to get a feel for the game.
    An informal poll of a few GMs I spoke with had Gallinari first and then a split between Alexander and Greene as the second small forward off the board. Look for teams like the Blazers at 13, the Suns at 15 and the Raptors at 17 to take a long look at Alexander.

    Tuesday, May 20, 2008

    And the bad news is...

    It's really starting to look like Alexander could be history. Evaluations at ESPN.com and DraftExpress.com have him projected very well. (http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/draft / http://www.draftexpress.com/profile/Joe-Alexander-1185/) They are reporting that his recent workout in Las Vegas was very impressive. Among the mock drafts I looked at, he was projected anywhere from 14th to 24th. It seems he's considered the 2nd or 3rd best small forward in the draft behind Danilo Gallinari from Italy and Donte' Greene from Syracuse.

    Sunday, May 18, 2008

    Ebanks a Mountaineer

    Foxsports and Scout.com have reported that Devin Ebanks has committed to WVU.

    "Ebanks is the jewel of the 2008 class for the Mountaineers. He joins big man Kevin Jones, forward Roscoe Davis and guard Darryl Bryant." -Rivals.com

    Wednesday, May 14, 2008

    Rich Rod's Depo... You be the judge>>>

    I have furnished you with the links to the Rich Rod Deposition. It comes in three parts. I will let you read this 300+ page document at your leisure. Since I know you have nothing better to do. I just felt that this is information that gives you a feel for what the Coach's thoughts were. I concede that we may know no more than we already did but here it is. It is in PDF format so it should work on your computer or browser.

    Link to first part of deposition.
    Link to second part of deposition.
    Link to third part of deposition.

    Da Geek

    Tuesday, May 13, 2008

    Pat White gets his first '08 All-American Honor

    He was the third Mountaineer in as many years to be named to the Playboy All American Team. Dan Mozes '06 and Steve Slaten '07. It should be noted that Playboy picks one QB to be on its team. A high honor indeed. Also, this should be a great start to a Heisman campaign. I find it just as interesting that our beloved Pat was picked ahead of last years Heisman winner, Tim Tebo. The accolades keep coming in for this student athlete and are very much deserved. As all the readers on this blog are aware Pat is the all-everything to this team. Anyway, congrats to Pat!!!

    Pat discusses this honor (as quoted in the Charleston Daily Mail)... "Being named to this team is a great honor, one of many I will always remember," White said. "I can now tell my children and grandchildren one day that I was truly a 'playboy' while in college. "Really, it's an honor and a privilege to become part of the long legacy of All-Americans named to Playboy's prestigious team. I would be remiss if I didn't mention my parents, coaches and teammates, who without them, none of these accolades would be possible."


    Friday, May 9, 2008

    Sadly Coach Stew entered the Mike Garrison melee.

    Coach Stewart issued a letter in support of Mike Garrison. It is a shame that he and Coach Huggins have decided to take sides in this debate. In my humble opinion they needed to stay on the sidelines, both figuratively and literally. I understand that they are doing nothing more than endorsing a guy that gave them a job or a substantial raise. I just wish that Coach Stew would have stayed out of it. He is now going to be married to this President regardless of what happens to him. I don't like the idea of athletics and academics being pitted against one another. But that is what is happening.

    Anyway, it saddens me that my degrees from my beloved institution of higher learning are now going to be tarnished by Mr. Garrison's political miscalculations. Either you earn the degree or it should not be conferred. Anyway the full text of Coach Stew's letter in support is as follows:

    "I would like to take this opportunity to voice my support for President Mike Garrison. He works hard every day for each employee of this great University. He cares about the state of West Virginia and his alma mater and fights every day to ensure that WVU is a first-class institution.
    President Garrison is man’s man and believes in accountability. I have seen first hand how he interacts and connects with all of WVU’s student-athletes. He supports the school’s mission, believing they must be students first and competitors second. He cares just as much for them in the classroom as he does on the playing field.
    He has my unwavering loyalty and support. I report to two great administrators, gentleman and leaders in Mr. Ed Pastilong and President Garrison. Without the support of these two fine individuals, Mountaineer football would not have reached the pinnacle of success that it is enjoying today. I would jump into a foxhole with these two classy men, any day.
    Last year after our only two losses of the season, President Garrison was there for the players and coaching staff with unconditional encouragement. How he backed the team after these two tough defeats meant more to us as a program than his exuberant support following the Fiesta Bowl victory.
    It’s examples like this that show what a classy leader we have at West Virginia University. Bill Stewart and West Virginia Football proudly support President Mike Garrison, and we are very thankful that he is leading this great University now and into the future.
    Bill Stewart Head Football Coach West Virginia University"

    As I said above I love Coach Stew but I must say I disagree with this decision. I don't claim that I have the full story on the goings on of this issue, but I can not ignore the damaging press that Mr. Garrison attracted to the University over this issue, thus I am as I said before saddened.

    Da Geek

    Thursday, May 8, 2008

    Big East is in the Big 6 BCS Bowl Mix till 2013.

    The Charleston Gazette reported that the Big East's contract with the BCS is solid through 2013.
    BCS officials reaffirmed the participation of the six leagues currently involved through the end of the 2013 season. That includes the Big East.
    The reinvention of the league since the 2003 purge is complete. And one can now call it a complete success.
    The reason is simple: no one noticed the news. No one questioned the Big East's place at the adult table. The reaffirmation wasn't even a note in BCS meeting coverage.
    "It was quiet,'' Big East commissioner Mike Tranghese said Tuesday. "The way I like it."
    It was both quiet and satisfying.
    Just like the unreported numbers-crunching that led to the reaffirmation.
    "We had a formal [evaluation] process in December," Tranghese said. "No one made much of it. All of us [BCS officials] elected not to make a big deal of it.''
    That's how Tranghese promised the process would be handled right after details of the three-pronged evaluation process were announced a few years back.
    "We've been careful not to discuss specifics too much because we don't want the media to speculate," said the commissioner.
    Mission accomplished.-
    Charleston Gazette May 8, 2008

    Tis great news for us all that the media isn't even covering the issue. I guess it helps that we have gone perfect 3-0 in BCS bowl games since the ACC Raid. Oh and by the way during the same period the ACC has gone a perfect 0-3.

    Da Geek

    WVU No.1 in at least one Preseason Poll.

    Southern Pigskin has released its preseason poll and you know who is on top. I know it is only a preseason poll but it is nice to get some early pub. I am always a fan of reading glowing stuff about our beloved EERS!!! I have pulled the top 25 and kept the blurbs on WVU and those they play. But click on the above link to read the entire article.

    1. West Virginia – Bill Stewart takes over what will arguably be the fastest team in college football. Quarterback Pat White and running back Noel Devine provide an offensive threat few teams can match. This team can flat out fly. An out of conference test against Auburn may tell the tale. 2. Ohio State 3. Florida 4. Georgia 5. Southern Cal 6. Oklahoma 7. LSU 8. Missouri 9. Clemson 10. Texas 11. Texas Tech 12. Auburn – Defensively, few teams will be better. The offense will undergo a major transition, but quarterback Kodi Burns looked impressive in the Chick-fil-A Bowl. If this team can overcome coordinator changes, it could be a big year. 13. Tennessee 14. Kansas 15. Illinois 16. Virginia Tech 17. Arizona State 18. Penn State 19. Connecticut - The Huskies will be one of the most experienced teams in the Big East. Quarterback Tyler Lorenzen is back for his senior season. This is a program on the rise nationally. 20. BYU 21. Wisconsin 22. Florida State 23. Wake Forest 24. South Florida – Quarterback Matt Grothe returns for the Bulls, headlining a team that will be very experienced on both sides of the football. USF will have to work on being more consistent after slipping some late last year. 25. Alabama - Southern Pigskin.com.

    Da Geek

    Wednesday, May 7, 2008

    Saturday, May 3, 2008

    Gwaltney trying to come back.

    There is a report on the Big East Notebook page of ESPN.com that Jason Gwaltney is studying at a community college to gain the credits needed for readmission to WVU. Bill Stewart reportedly told the Charleston Gazette that he would be welcomed back if he followed all of the guidelines to get his eligibility back.

    Thursday, May 1, 2008

    Big East Now has a Bowl Tie-in for 7 of its members.

    ESPN.com is reporting:

    "The St. Petersburg Bowl will be played between Dec. 20-23 at Tropicana Field, the home of the Tampa Bay Rays. It will match teams from the Big East and Conference USA. The Big East now has bowl berths for seven of its eight teams in 2008. Conference USA will have six bowl berths for its 12 schools.
    "The St. Petersburg Bowl is another great bowl opportunity for the Big East," league commissioner Michael Tranghese said. "The game is played in a Big East market and already has generated great interest in the local community.""

    Da Geek

    Youtube Highlights for South Florida Game

    Big East Champions

    Bruce Irvin

    Pat White 15 Touchdowns Just to remind you of how fun scoring can be...

    Geno Smith Video By Dougitydog

    How important are early verbal commitments?

    How many pushups do you predict Brock will press in Marshall game?