Friday News & Notes

Conference Bashing

Mike Brey wants to keep the notion that the Big Ten is a bad basketball conference alive.

Notre Dame Mike Brey joked Tuesday that he knows of a surefire way to make certain the Fighting Irish don’t have another midseason swoon like last season.

“If we could play in the Big Ten, maybe that would help us a little bit,” he said.

Brey should worry a little more about winning games than taking cheap shots at the Big Ten. The bottom line is that, no matter how tough your schedule is, you have to beat someone. 2-13 versus the RPI top 50 isn’t going to cut it anywhere. As Brian points out, Notre Dame went 1-2 against the very conference that he pokes fun at with their one win coming over Indiana.

The Big Ten landed 8 of its 11 teams in the end of year RPI top 50 and sent seven teams to the NCAA tournament will be back next year. In his updated preseason top 25 rankings Jeff Goodman included six Big Ten teams compared to only three from the Big East. Maybe the media is catching on to the fact that there is a lot of talent in the Big Ten. With all five sophomores from the all-conference first team returning I think we should be in for a special year. The parity near the top will make for a tight race –Katz has Michigan 3rd in the Big Ten and Goodman has them 6th but still in the top 25.

NBA Camp Underway

Michigan recruits at the NBA PA camp got off to a great start. Trey Zeigler shined in the morning session yesterday, scoring 16 points in an 86-76 win. Evan Smotrycz scored 11 points in a morning loss but reportedly played very well. Substitutions are very structured at the camp so most players only play around 20 minutes or so per game.

NorthStarBasketball caught up with Adreian Payne and Ray McCallum at the camp, both players listed Michigan and neither one lists a favorite.

Adreian Payne

Payne, who mentioned that there are other schools recruiting him that he could not think of, stated that the fact that three of his AAU teammates with All-Ohio Red are committed to Ohio State and one is committed to Dayton will not influence him, regarding wanting to play with them at the next level.

Ray McCallum

Favorites: “No, not really. [I am] open to everybody. Everybody is about the same right now.”

Note- McCallum’s father is the head coach at Detroit, and here is what he said about whether or not he would seriously consider going there: “He’s taught me everything I know and he knows my game the best, so it’s a possibility, but I’ve always wanted to play high-major [ball, and] I’m a high-major player. . . . I don’t really want to play mid-major.”

Northstar also lists Casey Prather among their elite performers on day 1 and Richard Solomon mentioned U-M but didn’t include them on his list of favorites.’s report ($) includes a look at Trey Zeigler and Adreian Payne. Josh Selby reportedly got the best of Ray McCallum. The Wolverine also posted a report ($) on Zeigler, Smotrycz, and other Michigan targets.

Crisler Renovations

Bill Martin projects that the Athletic Department will come out with a 8.6 million (billion if you read the Arbor News) dollar surplus for the upcoming fiscal year.  He also announced that Crisler Arena is next:

Speaking before the Board of Regents, Martin said a Crisler overhaul and the replacement of bleachers at Yost Ice Arena are the two key projects remaining for his department after a six-year stretch of overhauling the university’s athletic facilities.

Any renovations of Crisler would be a separate project than the building of a basketball practice facility, a $23.2 million undertaking already in progress. Other ongoing projects include a new football fieldhouse, a wrestling facility and additions around the soccer field.

Brandan Kearney

Team USA has started 2-0 in pool play with wins over Brazil and Venezuela (box scores here). Kearney scored 7 points in 10 minutes on 2 of 3 (1-2 3pt) shooting in the first win. Brandan’s second game wasn’t quite so efficient, he settled for 4 points on 1 of 5 (0-3 3pt) shooting while hitting 2 of 4 free throws, pulling down three rebounds, and dishing two assists to one turnover. Team USA plays again tonight at 5 pm eastern versus Puerto Rico and the semi-finals and finals will take place over the weekend.

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