Las Vegas Sun

December 14, 2017

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Mike Grimala

UNLV beat writer

Mike covered high school and college sports for The Boston Globe and ESPN.com before moving to Las Vegas in 2012 to cover UNLV athletics for RunRebs.com. Mike is a Massachusetts native, a graduate of Northeastern University and a fan of all Boston sports teams (though he’s not as obnoxious about it as you’d imagine).

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Story Archive

WNBA's Las Vegas Aces are the latest addition to city's pro sports landscape
Monday, Dec. 11, 2017
Las Vegas has a new pro sports team — again. It was announced on Monday that the city’s WNBA franchise, which will begin play in 2018, will be called the Las Vegas Aces. The team name and logo were revealed during a press conference at Mandalay Bay ...
UNLV grinds out 89-82 win over Illinois
Sunday, Dec. 10, 2017
Basketball isn’t always pretty, and no one knows that better than Jovan Mooring. On Saturday, UNLV’s senior guard put his PhD in physicality to use, scoring 27 hard-earned points against a tough Illinois defense to lead the Rebels to an 89-82 win at the MGM Grand Garden Arena ...
Live blog: UNLV holds off Illinois, 89-82
Saturday, Dec. 9, 2017
UNLV has one more chance to add another quality non-conference win, and it comes tonight against Illinois (7-3, No. 97 KenPom rating) at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Can the Rebels add to their resume? Three keys for UNLV ...
UNLV football fires defensive coordinator, special teams coordinator
Saturday, Dec. 9, 2017
UNLV announced on Saturday that defensive coordinator Kent Baer and special teams coordinator Andy LaRussa will not return to the coaching staff next year. Head coach Tony Sanchez said Baer and LaRussa improved the Rebels during their time, but that a change was ...
Rebels' Windy City backcourt ready to take on Illinois
Saturday, Dec. 9, 2017
Do different areas of the country produce different types of basketball players? The UNLV backcourt thinks so. When senior shooting guard Jovan Mooring, a Chicago native, was asked this week what trait is commonly possessed by ballers from his hometown, his ...
Brandon McCoy quickly getting up to speed with fitness
Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017
Is it possible we haven’t seen the best of Brandon McCoy yet? The five-star freshman center has certainly been impressive so far, as he leads UNLV in scoring (20.0 points per game) and ...
Runnin' Rebels, Golden Knights coexist for first time steps apart on Strip
Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2017
If there was any doubt that Las Vegas is now a major sports hub, Tuesday night saw the city’s two flagship teams play opposite each other for the first time this season ...
UNLV uses depth in win over Oral Roberts
Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2017
Brandon McCoy didn’t dominate against Oral Roberts on Tuesday night, but it didn’t matter. The fact that UNLV rolled to a 92-66 win anyway, despite a solid-but-unspectacular showing from the freshman star, was a positive development that the team needed after ...
Live blog: Rebels roll over Oral Roberts, 92-66
Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2017
UNLV looks to get back in the win column tonight, when the Rebels take on Oral Roberts at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. After consecutive overtime losses, a contest against the 2-7 Golden Eagles could be ...
Vegas Play of the Day: Trailblazers vs. Wizards
Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2017
Here’s the latest installment of the Play of the Day, which uses odds from the South Point. Our three sports writers started with ...
After late losses, Rebels rallying to Jovan Mooring's side
Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2017
Losing back-to-back games the way the Rebels have — letting very winnable contests against Northern Iowa and Arizona slip away in the final minutes — can put strain on a team. Even a program in the midst of a remarkable turnaround season like UNLV can be ...
Local star QB Kenyon Oblad commits to UNLV
Sunday, Dec. 3, 2017
UNLV football received a big commitment on Sunday, as local star quarterback Kenyon Oblad of Liberty announced he will stay home for his college career and play for the Rebels. Oblad, the state’s all-time leading passer, made the announcement via ...
Rebels lose to Arizona, drop second straight OT decision
Saturday, Dec. 2, 2017
For the second straight game, UNLV played a tough opponent down to the wire, only to commit a series of late miscues that ended up deciding the contest. On Wednesday, it was an avoidable overtime loss at Northern Iowa. On Saturday, it was an even more heart-wrenching
Live blog: UNLV falls to Arizona in OT, 91-88
Saturday, Dec. 2, 2017
The last time UNLV hosted Arizona, just before Christmas in 2014, the game ended with a 71-67 win for the home team and Rebels fans storming the Thomas & Mack Center court. Can UNLV score another upset over a talented Arizona squad tonight (7 p.m., CBS Sports Network) ...
Rebels look to recover against sleeping giant Arizona
Saturday, Dec. 2, 2017
UNLV lost its first game of the season in gut-wrenching fashion on Wednesday, dropping a winnable contest in overtime at Northern Iowa. It was the kind of defeat that can stick with a team long after leaving the arena, but the Rebels don’t have much time to mourn ...
For Brandon McCoy, lessons to be learned from Northern Iowa loss
Friday, Dec. 1, 2017
Three weeks into his college career, freshman center Brandon McCoy had pretty much had his way with opponents. Using his athleticism, skill and sheer size, McCoy was able to dominate on both ends of the floor — until Wednesday against Northern Iowa ...
UNLV suffers first loss in overtime slugfest at Northern Iowa
Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2017
Almost nothing went right for UNLV on Wednesday. The Rebels couldn’t shoot straight or hold onto the ball. And yet, they were one play away from ...
Blog: UNLV falls in overtime at Northern Iowa, 77-68
Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2017
UNLV ran out of gas in the overtime period, and Northern Iowa outscored the Rebels, 16-7 in the extra frame to pull away for a 77-68 win. While Northern Iowa seemed energized by a late surge that forced the OT period ...
Rebels can prove a lot in road test at Northern Iowa
Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2017
The Runnin’ Rebels are rolling at 6-0, and they’re one more good week away from bursting back into the national consciousness. Today, UNLV takes its perfect record on the road to face Northern Iowa, followed by a Saturday showdown with Arizona at the Thomas & Mack Center. Win both, and the Rebels — who earned two points in this week’s AP Top 25 poll — could find ...
Will UNLV football be better positioned for success next year?
Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2017
The UNLV football season ended on Saturday with a disappointing loss at UNR, saddling the Rebels with a 5-7 final record and leaving them one win short of qualifying for a bowl game. Although the Rebels increased their win total for the third straight year under head coach Tony Sanchez, they admittedly fell short of their goal of earning a postseason berth. That will make the 2018 campaign even more ...
UNLV basketball receives votes in AP Top 25 poll
Monday, Nov. 27, 2017
UNLV basketball is off to an impressive 6-0 start, and the national media is beginning to take notice, as the Runnin’ Rebels received votes in this week’s AP Top 25 poll for the first time in three years ...
Jordan Johnson leads UNLV past Southern Utah in 'winning time'
Saturday, Nov. 25, 2017
Marvin Menzies regularly preaches the concept of “winning time,” which he defines as the final four minutes of a close game. He speaks of it often, and drills into his players the importance of making the right play during those moments when the game is on the line ...
Live blog: UNLV pulls away from Southern Utah, 101-82
Saturday, Nov. 25, 2017
UNLV is 5-0 and coming off an impressive win over Utah, and they'll try to keep that momentum rolling forward in Saturday's matchup against Big Sky opponent Southern Utah. The Thunderbirds are 2-2 and not regarded very highly by the various national ...
Runnin' Rebels score statement win over Utah
Thursday, Nov. 23, 2017
Any lingering questions about the legitimacy of UNLV’s undefeated record were answered on Wednesday, when the Rebels routed a good Utah team, 85-58, in the championship game of the MGM Main Event at T-Mobile Arena. Utah came into the contest 4-0 and ranked ...
Blog: UNLV notches dominant win over Utah, 85-58
Wednesday, Nov. 22, 2017
UNLV imposed its will on Utah over the final 20 minutes and pulled away for an impressive 85-58 win in the championship game of the MGM Main Event. Brandon McCoy was limited by foul trouble in ...
Rebels ready for first true test against tough, experienced Utah
Wednesday, Nov. 22, 2017
Marvin Menzies promised a better product and more wins in his second season on the job, and after importing a top recruiting class ...
Brandon McCoy leads UNLV to dominant win over Rice
Monday, Nov. 20, 2017
By the time Brandon McCoy scored his fifth basket of the night — a short jumper that made him 5-of-5 from the field and put UNLV ahead, 32-16, midway through the first half — it had become very clear that Rice had no chance of stopping the freshman phenom ...
Blog: UNLV dismantles Rice, 95-68
Monday, Nov. 20, 2017
UNLV basketball has gotten off to a blistering start this season, blowing out a succession of easy opponents to rack up a 3-0 record. The Rebels will try to continue their early stretch of impressive play tonight, when they take on Rice (1-2) at T-Mobile Arena. A quick ...
Vegas Play of the Day: Seahawks vs. Falcons
Monday, Nov. 20, 2017
Here’s the latest installment of the Play of the Day, which uses odds from the South Point. Our three sports writers started with ...
Before Rice matchup, Rebels showing lineup versatility
Monday, Nov. 20, 2017
UNLV wants to play big this season. That’s no secret. But against Eastern Washington on Friday, the Rebels had to change gears and go in the opposite direction in order to improve to 3-0. Early in the game, Eastern Washington had success by spreading the floor with smaller, quicker offensive players and forcing the UNLV big men to defend off the dribble in space. That proved to be ...
Las Vegas' sports rivalries: Past, present and future
Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017
The addition of NHL and the NFL will only add to a rich tradition of sports rivalries in Las Vegas.
Armani Rogers saves Rebels' season with miracle drive
Friday, Nov. 17, 2017
It took Armani Rogers three passes to save UNLV’s season. Well, it actually took a lot more than that. Rogers also had to rush for 193 yards (including an electrifying 83-yard touchdown run) and produce 404 yards of total offense, but with less than a minute on ...
Live blog: Rogers leads Rebels to 38-35 win at New Mexico
Friday, Nov. 17, 2017
It’s as simple as this: UNLV needs to win tonight, on the road at New Mexico (6:30 p.m., ESPN 2), or any hopes of qualifying for a bowl game will be dashed in a very official, very final way. Can the Rebels pull it off? ...
Ahead of must-win game, Rebels quiet on quarterback decision
Friday, Nov. 17, 2017
If Tony Sanchez has made a decision on which quarterback will start for UNLV in today’s must-win game at New Mexico, he’s not telling ...
Jovan Mooring taking charge as Rebels' defensive leader
Friday, Nov. 17, 2017
Jovan Mooring has always been known for his offense. But the aspect of his game that should be drawing more attention this season is ...
Vegas Play of the Day: Steelers vs. Titans
Thursday, Nov. 16, 2017
Here’s the latest installment of the Play of the Day, which uses odds from the South Point. Our four sports writers started with ...
UNLV overpowers Prairie View A&M, 98-63
Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2017
The Rebels weren’t perfect on Wednesday. They didn’t execute flawlessly, they didn’t defend up to coach Marvin Menzies’ standards, and they struggled significantly from the free-throw line. In a lot of ways, it was a game that turned ugly for long stretches. So it’s ...
Blog: Rebels rout Prairie View A&M for second straight win
Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2017
UNLV unveiled its rebuilt roster in Saturday's season-opening 108-66 win over Florida A&M, and the first impression was very promising. Can the Rebels keep the momentum going tonight, with Prairie View A&M visiting the Thomas & Mack Center? ...
With McCoy and Juiston, Rebels have size on their side
Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2017
At a time when it seems like basketball is downsizing across the board, UNLV is going big. New big men Brandon McCoy and Shakur Juiston are ...
Vegas Play of the Day: Panthers vs. Dolphins
Monday, Nov. 13, 2017
Here’s the latest installment of the Play of the Day, which uses odds from the South Point. Our four sports writers started with ...
UNLV basketball opens season with blowout win
Saturday, Nov. 11, 2017
Hopeful UNLV fans saw the best version of the Runnin’ Rebels in Saturday’s season opener. The newly constructed home team ran Florida A&M out of the Thomas & Mack Center, and all the pieces fit together. Point guard Jordan Johnson, finally unbridled after ...
Live blog: Rebels open season with 108-66 win over Florida A&M
Saturday, Nov. 11, 2017
UNLV basketball returns tonight with a brand-new team and big expectations. The rebuilt Rebels are aiming for a Mountain West championship, and after an offseason that saw head coach Marvin Menzies add several high-profile recruits, they just might ...
Rebels grounded by 'more physical' BYU
Friday, Nov. 10, 2017
Maybe it’s not all about the quarterback, after all. UNLV, which saw its season revived as reserve QB Johnny Stanton led the team to back-to-back wins over the last two weeks, fell to BYU on Friday, 31-21, and it had little to do with quarterback play ...
Live blog: BYU tops UNLV, 31-21
Friday, Nov. 10, 2017
UNLV heads into today’s home game against long-time rival BYU as a somewhat surprising 3.5-point favorite, and a win would boost the Rebels’ bowl hopes significantly. Can UNLV get the victory, get back to .500 and ...
Big predictions for UNLV basketball
Friday, Nov. 10, 2017
So much has changed for UNLV basketball in the past year, it’s almost impossible to predict how the 2017-18 season will unfold. But that didn’t stop us from trying. With the season set to tip off on Saturday against ...
Johnny Stanton settling in at QB for Rebels' stretch run
Friday, Nov. 10, 2017
Armani Rogers is the future of the UNLV football program, and with the Rebels just two wins away from gaining bowl eligibility, the freshman quarterback is healthy enough to play. But it ...
UNLV recruit Trey Woodbury makes it official on Signing Day
Wednesday, Nov. 8, 2017
Trey Woodbury is a no-frills kind of guy. On Wednesday morning, the Clark senior and UNLV commit told his parents that he couldn’t wait to get his Signing Day ceremony over with ...
Eight UNLV basketball games that will define the season
Wednesday, Nov. 8, 2017
With the start of UNLV basketball season less than a week away, now is a good time to scan the schedule and circle some of the Rebels' more noteworthy contests. The season opener figures to be ...
Runnin' Rebels set to debut new court for 2017-18
Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017
The UNLV basketball program may be difficult to recognize this year. Not only has the Runnin' Rebels' roster been upgraded significantly, but the team will debut a new court for the ...
Vegas Play of the Day: Lions at Packers
Monday, Nov. 6, 2017
Here’s the latest installment of the Play of the Day, which uses odds from the South Point. Our four sports writers started with ...

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