I was hoping to be in New Orleans for this year’s Final Four to support John Calipari, the Kentucky basketball coach and my good friend. But I’ve been hospitalized the past nine days, and even if they released me, I wouldn’t have taken the risk of traveling to the game. I’ve made some small improvements in my rehabilitation and I think they have my lungs and breathing under control.
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The UNLV basketball team received a great break in the pairings for the NCAA Tournament by drawing Colorado as its first opponent. I don’t think Colorado is a real good team. They are the fourth best team in the Pac-12 Conference, and it was a fluke they won that tournament.
What a great turnout Saturday for the UNLV basketball team’s game against San Diego State. It was the best crowd they’ve had all year and reminded me of the crowds we got every night because the fans were so engaged the entire game.
I have been really impressed with the way the UNLV basketball team is playing. They don’t have many bad games, and when they do, they come back with two or three straight good ones. I know (coach) Dave (Rice) has to be very happy with the way those guys are playing.
I was totally stunned. I thought the UNLV basketball team would play well Saturday, but I honestly didn’t think they would beat North Carolina. Not only did the Rebels beat them, they dominated. Those kids played with a lot of confidence and took North Carolina out of its game
You don’t put in the extra hours required to be a successful college basketball coach unless you have the love of the game. That’s the way I felt during my career and I know UNLV coach Dave Rice feels the same way. The Rebels open the season Friday and I couldn’t be happier with the job Dave has done.
When we played Loyola Marymount in the 1990 NCAA Tournament, several people thought they were going to outrun us because they had scored 149 points on Michigan earlier in the tournament. But I knew we were the better running team. I told my wife, Lois, before we played them that we were going to kill them.
What stands out to me about Bishop Gorman High School basketball star Shabazz Muhammad is how he elevates his level of play in big games. It’s easy to see why he is the nation’s top recruit.
Everyone knew Armen for the points he scored in leading us to the 1987 Final Four. But he was much more than a basketball player. He was a quality person of high character. Armen died Tuesday of heart problems. It was such shocking and devastating news.
Stacey Augmon is an extremely loyal human being. For me, the most important criterion in any individual is loyalty. If you a find a person who is very loyal, that person will be successful. Stacey has that quality inside-out.
Whenever I would attend a game or practice over the years where Dave Rice was coaching, he would always make it a point to come over and talk to me. He’s just a quality guy. He never hesitated going out of his way to acknowledge me, and always let me know how much he respected me.
I remember when Billy Tubbs was coaching at Oklahoma and everyone was trying to recruit Wayman Tisdale. Wayman was an Oklahoma high school legend and the nation’s top recruit. We all assumed Wayman was going to stay at home. Billy and I were good friends, so I asked him: “Does anyone else have a chance at signing him?” Billy told me, “There’s not enough oil in the whole country to buy Tisdale out of Oklahoma.”
I get upset every time I think about the NCAA. I just get so mad whenever I read or see something about the NCAA and how they treated me so unfairly. That was my initial reaction last week when watching the premiere of the documentary “Runnin’ Rebels of UNLV,” which was produced by HBO Sports. (The hour-long program debuts March 12 and runs throughout the month).
The UNLV basketball team got into a rut with its shooting last week, but I’m certain they will get out of it.
I think Auburn quarterback Cam Newton might be the best college football player I’ve ever seen. A quarterback with his size (6-foot-6, 250-pounds) who can run and pass like he can is rare. But what makes him the best is how he comes to play every game. He didn’t have a bad game all year.