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Midweek News and Notes

The face of a man who always thinks his decisions through.
The face of a man who always thinks his decisions through.
Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Jon Rothstein places Xavier third in the Big East, tabs Macura and Sumner for big leaps - Banners On The Parkway
This is our piece on where Jon Rothstein has Xavier so far. Point guard is, of course, the main question everyone is asking.

John Calipari excited about Kentucky Wildcats' 2016-17 recruiting class, says it could be best ever
Calipari also adds that he's a relentless self-promoter, an avowed narcissist, and has the best greasy hair look anywhere in the United States. Only some (ok, none) of those things are true. I really wish the NCAA would hurry up the inevitable UK investigation so this guy would go away.

A search for Big Blue love on Kentucky-only dating site BBNMeetup -
This, on the other hand, is a tongue in cheek takedown of the the UK-centric dating site we mentioned a couple of months back. I'm not sure whether the existence of this site is saddening or amusing, but it's definitely something.

Is Jamal Murray considering skipping classes to play for Team Canada? | CollegeBasketballTalk
Last UK thing, I promise. Representing your country should be at the top of any athlete's list of things to accomplish. Forcing a kid to sit out a semester because he may miss some classes that he's only attending to keep up appearances before leaving for the NBA is absurd. Let the kid play for his country, comeback and get the notes, and then play for his school.

Bruce Pearl on his time at Tennessee: ‘I ran a clean program’ | CollegeBasketballTalk
No Bruce, you didn't. Pearl has apparently forgotten that he was fired for breaking the rules, an action that doesn't go hand in hand with running a clean program.

Arkansas forward Jacorey Williams linked to pair of alleged assaults | CollegeBasketballTalk
It's been a couple of weeks, which means it's time for a college athlete to beat a woman again. How this has become so endemic is beyond me. Unfortunately, the trend is in the wrong direction.

I mentioned yesterday that now is, at least in terms of sports in Ohio, basically a waiting period until basketball starts up. I really enjoy reading to fill time and longform pieces are something that I spend some time on. To that end, here are a couple I've read recently, one about basketball, one not, that are worth passing along. At the very least, they may help fill some of those breaks and lunches at work where reading material is a must.

Countdown to March: Life and Death with a Small Town Team -
Everyone remembers the Bryce Drew teams at Valpo, if only through replays in March. Here's the story of being there as it happened.

Two Lanes to Accokeek -
This is not a story for the faint of heart or weak of stomach. It is one of the most compelling longform pieces I have read in quite some time.