Sluggish starts plague Rebels in early games

UNLV is 3-0 but knows it must operate better out of the gate

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Steve Marcus

UNLV’s Derrick Jasper is covered by Justin Bocot as he takes the ball down the court against Southern Illinois at the Thomas & Mack Center Saturday.

UNLV vs. Southern Illinois

UNLV's Anthony Marshall drives past Kendal Brown-Surles during the first half against Southern Illinois at the Thomas & Mack Center Saturday. Launch slideshow »
The Rebel Room

Willis leads charge in victory against Southern Illinois

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Las Vegas Sun reporters Rob Miech and Ray Brewer dissect the UNLV basketball team's 78-69 victory on Saturday against Southern Illinois. Tre'Von Willis had a career high 25 points and appears to be the Rebels' team leader.

In all three of its basketball games so far this season, UNLV has started as if it’s stuck in quicksand. It falls behind from the tip-off and needs about 10 minutes to get into it.

However, the Rebels are getting better. It only took them eight minutes to begin clicking Saturday night against Southern Illinois.

“We don’t realize it until we look at the scoreboard and we see that we’re down,” said sophomore guard Oscar Bellfield. “We have to start our offense from the jump and attack them before they attack us.”

Derrick Jasper, the fourth-year junior point guard who transferred from Kentucky, believes there is reason to be concerned.

“I’m not really sure what it is,” he said. “It’s kind of confusing. We’re 3-0, but we have to come out with more aggression and enthusiasm right when the tip-off begins.”

It’s as if the Rebels need a rabbit, like runners sometimes require someone to zip out from the field and establish a fast tempo, to have something tangible to aim for. The speedsters then have a gauge.

“That’s not the position we want to be in all year,” said sixth-year UNLV coach Lon Kruger. “We try to play each possession like it’s the last of a ball game. But for different reasons, we get off to slow starts.”

In the opener against Pittsburg State, the Rebels missed six of their first seven shots – then six of their next seven shots – and trailed, 14-10, midway through the first half.

Then they got it together and threatened to hit triple digits in a 91-52 victory over the Division-II Gorillas.

UNLV only hit two of its first 12 shots against UNR last Wednesday night and trailed its Silver State rivals 14-13 midway through the first half.

The Rebels won, 88-75, on a strong second half.

Saturday night, they went 2-for-10 out of the gate and trailed the Salukis, 18-6, after six minutes. UNLV zapped SIU by hitting 77 percent of its second-half attempts to fuel a 78-69 victory.

“That’s something we really need to work on, coming out more ready,” Bellfield said. “Playing against better teams, sometimes we won’t be able to come back from a big deficit. So we have to jump on them first.

“We’ve got to get the big lead so we don’t have to fight back and catch up.”

Junior guard Tre'Von Willis missed a jump shot and a 3-pointer within a 37-second span in the first two minutes of the game against the Salukis.

“We’re not making shots, including me,” he said. “We have to make shots and attack. During the middle of games, we definitely attack and go to the hole with the ball, and make plays for teammates. We’re real aggressive.

“We have to do that at the start of games, drive the ball … drive it, drive it, and kick … we have to take the fight to them. This team has a lot of fight in it. I love this team for that reason.”

Even in UNLV’s exhibition against Division-II Washburn, the Rebels struggled from the start. They almost didn’t awaken from their malaise.

The Ichabods led, 9-7, after eight minutes. UNLV eked out to a lead but never pulled away. When Washburn took the lead early in the second half, it either kept the advantage or the game was tied for more than 11 minutes.

Bellfield tipped in a Justin Hawkins errant jumper with 3:25 left to give the Rebels the lead for good in a meaningless game that didn’t turn out to be so meaningless.

It showed what was coming in their next three games.

Will slow starts continue to plague UNLV against Holy Cross on Wednesday and Louisville on Saturday?

“We play a little bit and find our feel for the game,” Jasper said. “Thankfully, we have a great bench to help us and boost us back up, and give us more energy as the game continues.”

Free throws

Legacy High’s basketball team watched most of UNLV’s practice Monday afternoon at the Thomas & Mack Center … the Rebels got 10 points off inbounds plays Saturday night. That success continued Monday at practice when the first teamers (in white) rattled off more than a few baskets in a row, at will, from those plays against the reserves (in black). “Black, you need a timeout! You do!” said assistant coach Steve Henson with a smile … junior shooter Kendall Wallace actually missed a few 3-pointers Monday. Hotter than, well, heck since practice started, he looks mortal lately. Most of his misses have come up short … guard Anthony Marshall, the freshman from Mojave High, drilled a deep 3-pointer from the right corner Monday. Todd Hanni made contact, and Marshall fell back, moving three padded courtside seats. He got back into the huddle as if nothing happened … for the past 10 days or so, since he decided to redshirt this season to bulk up and become familiar with Lon Kruger’s system, rookie center Carlos Lopez has looked confident and strong, swatting much of what comes his way. Darris Santee, Chace Stanback and Tre'Von Willis each had their shots blocked by Lopez on Monday … unless something happens in the 11th hour, Los Angeles Westchester High forward Dwayne Polee is scheduled to visit UNLV this weekend and attend the Louisville game at the Mack on Saturday afternoon.

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  1. I got my fingers crossed for that Polee kid. He has some sick highlights on Youtube. Tall and athletic, he can finish strong at the rim. We need some tall guys like that to help with our guard heavy lineup.

    Another thing I was thinking is that the depth will help this team out during tournaments. That could be big for us in the Diamondhead, conference tourney, and hopefully Big Dance. The three headed monster and the 7 deep guard roster is hard to beat 3 days in a row.

    A nice showing at the Diamondhead tourney in Hawaii could be very good for us recruiting wise. National coverage right before conference play, and we will have had some good games decided by then, we will know a lot more about this team.

    Hopefully we stay focused and beat the hell out of Holy Cross. Please dont be like last years team and hardly ever put 2 decent halves together. Lets stomp them out of the gym from the start. Im still waiting for Stanback and Jasper to have that breakout game like Willis had last one. This could be a very hard team to scout come January, so many players that can come out and drop 20+ pts and a some dimes, boards, and picks too. I love it. Go Rebs!

  2. Imo if we got joseph he would most likely start from day 1, and for polee it may be harder cause of stanback... Lets just hope if he signs with us and does be like 6 man that he is in the right mindset and no transferring (like d mitchell). Maybe polee will thicken up and be able to guard bigs so he could play the 3 4 or 5... I'll take whoever commits first though lol

  3. wow nice heads up on those utube videos..nice work boyz...this kid iz ...finisher. super strong,gets to the rim w/ eez...sory above the rim. so smooth n silky ala augmun but a bit thicker and stronger not az flimsy (plastic man)alot more sturdy and alwayz in control..can handle the ball in and out of traffic @ 6'8"...dont kno if this kid can shoot or play "D"...(that wuld b a problem if he came to UNLV) BUT HE CAN BLOCK SHOTS!!! WOW!!!CAN HE!!...he's the real deal for us to land him with this team wuld defenatly put us back on the n'tional seen top 10-5 could b crakd..thanx for that heads up again!!

  4. and by the way stanbak iz playn right now wich isn't to bad...polee would be starting by the end of summer...jus because nobody on our team can finish like him...mabey nobody in college

  5. Like Rob said yesterday though, we've got one scholarship next season. Who would get it? Would it be a case of who says they want to come here first?

  6. Speakling strictly of need Polee would probably be a better fit because we have 6 guards all returning next year. A tall, super athletic wing is something we have not had in a long time. When everything breaks down it would be nice just to throw it up and let Polee go get it. That being said we have not seen the rest of his game. Deshawn Mitchell was a high wire act but he never rarely saw the court. I think in order to get Joseph we have to make the NCAA's and make a little run. With schools like Texas and UConn involved team success I think will go a long way in his decision. Runnin' Rebels!

  7. yeah we need polee...deshawn m. iz no polee

  8. yes we can let loose a kid..

  9. sory kid..

  10. ok sucatash i do value ur opinion...if we lost kruger who would come here Theius.. would be a great hire can he recruit yes. he has... but not fully proven as far as X's and O's..not even close...if we have the ball after a time out were scoring...best inbound plays in the country...and over the years our secound half adjustments have been solid...SIU was know for there intensity...we suffocated them...his boys always play with heart exept last year and i hate to say it but that was winks fault (5 star player by the way) i know u want the top 5 so bad and thats where we belong...Kruger is a very respectible man...he had a heart attack last year please let him play golf and relax...we got to prove it on the court then we'll get the kids like polee lets see what happens sat.

  11. fkg, Kruger did not have a heart attack. Two years ago, he had multiple bypass surgery to fix an issue that was mainly genetic. Repeat, there was no heart attack.
    Anyone who hasn't seen improvement in Massamba this season is just out to attack, who just dreams up ways to constantly be abrasive and critical. Wow, who could that be? That comedy act turned stale so long ago.
    Polee visiting could affect Joseph. Does Joseph visit, get a great vibe and give a verbal before he heads out on Trop and back up Eastern to the Findlay neighborhood? Possibly. Recruiting is a great puzzle, somone much smarter than me told me yesterday. You never know how it's gonna fit. Never. That's the fun of it.

  12. Rob, Please cut that guy from these posts. It's more than abrasive and critical. You post a comments policy where you say not to use this forum for personal attacks, and yet you let him run his personal agenda as a Kruger Hater week in and week out.

  13. I think we are getting ahead of ourselves here. I think we have a better chance of landing Polee than Joseph, so before we go cancelling and offering scholarships let's see who actually wants to be here. If both kids decide they want to suit up for us, then it might be time to consider letting a scholarship go but i think it is very premature to discuss both kids coming here. Besides, are we counting Buckley's verbal commitment as a "used" scholarship or would that be the last available for 2010-11?

  14. sory mr miech..your right shuldnt be so vague with somthin so serious...u guys have to let him be heard..this is still america and i honestly believe he is a die hard...just too negative butt he's the ying to the yang don't take what he says so personal i know Kruger doesn't..that man has way too much class.

  15. #1. If you told me before the season Massamba would be putting up 9 pts and 3 boards on pretty much a nightly basis (except the SIU game), I would have laughed. He isn't putting up numbers worthy of any type of accolades but it is good enough to be part of a 3-man rotation at center.

    #2. It is highly unlikely that Joseph and Polee will both be begging Kruger to come to the school. Contrary to what some of you think, I believe one of the 2 will commit here and I will be ecstatic with either one. We won't have our pick at CJ and Polee..

    #3. If somehow they both told Kruger that they wanted to come to UNLV, then I'm sure Kruger would not choose between the two, he'd take em both. Maybe Polee's family is wealthy and he could redshirt freshman season and pay his way (as Stanback did last yr) then be on scholarship his sophomore year.
    -#3B. If they both wanted to come and not redshirt (which I'd prefer) then he could look around and see who has been groaning about PT or not giving it his all in practice and maybe drop a guy. The only two guys that I think Kruger would consider are Shaw and Massamba.
    *Shaw: Reasoning behind him is because he will be a senior next year and most likely will see less PT than this year. Also, he will pretty much reach his ceiling this year. Thomas/Lopez/Buckley/Polee all coming in would more than make up for him leaving. I know you all like Matt Shaw, but take your pick, Shaw for 1 year or Polee for 3+ years?
    *Massamba: He might as well redshirt next season with Thomas and Lopez coming in. Thomas is a much more athletic and skilled version of Brice (Kansas fans commented on here and said we will enjoy him). Lopez will also take some PT away. Same as Henry. Joel Anthony didn't look like an NBA prospect even after his jr season, so I think Brice should stay, but he is still on of the top 2 options. Massamba still has time to develop. Choice would be Shaw for a season or Brice for 2? I'd drop Shaw & keep Brice.

    #4. If Kruger could only take one of the 2, take Cory Joseph. Cory can take over the game with, he can literally do everything out there on the court. A kid who can jump extremely high isn't the one I want taking the last second shot in the Final Four, Cory Joseph is. Polee looks great, but honestly, he cant dunk every damn possesion. He would need to develop a lot more. I would take Joseph, because he can shoot from anywhere on the court, pass well, rebound, defend, and he can throw down (not like Polee of course).

    Roster 10-11

    Starters: Backups:
    PG:Cory Joseph Bellfield
    SG: Tre Willis Hawkins
    SF: jasper Marshall (at G, he plays big)
    PF: Stanback Polee
    C: Thomas/Lopez Lopez or Thomas

    Wallace
    Massamba
    Henry Buckley
    Todd Hanni
    Tyler Norman
    (Matt Shaw was dropped)

    *another situation is someone transfers :/ which wouldn't be good but it would pave the way for them both

  16. fkg319, I guarantee you that Kruger has no idea who that guy is and has never heard of him, nor does he care. Kruger can eat at the top restaurants in the city for free while Sufferin is livin off of unemployment money, Kruger is doing justt fiiinee.

  17. evrybody is always bikerin on this web site we need to have some fun....yeah this polee kid can dunk...would he crack UNLV's top 10 dunkers of all time here's mine... bout to find out who the real fans are? imonly gonna name 9 cuzz Regie Theius has got to be there somewhere and since i was only 4 cant make a sound judgment mabey the 1st schoolers can help me out @10 we got Jeff Collins kid could jump out the gym. still remember him takin allyoops from lil tark at half court #9 Armon Gilliam thunderous dunks he would jus clear the lane. #8theius?? or mabey sombody from erlier? #7 George Akles that baseline dunk @ barnhill arena will live in infamy #6 Stacey Augman aka plastic man remember his freshman year with that dunk on bj and iowa IN THE TOURNEY. #5 Jarvis Bassnight he fugn jump over a dude??? i was there!!! At #4 we got Keon Clark so nasty #3 Richie Adams a shame what happened to him. #2 MR. Larry Johnson and @ #1

  18. EEEEEEEEEEEEEZZZZZZZZZZZZZZEEEEEEEE RIIIIIIIIIIDerrrrr

  19. Thats what i'm sayin reb11 Kruger doesnt have time for this, its for us...

  20. Between sufferin's suffering life, fkg's poor excuse for the english language, and 11's long rants that are usually worthless (including on rebel net)...i think i will just stick to the stories. This is all about the Rebels and nothing these 3 stooges have to offer is worth my time.

  21. Must be a band member. I like talking like that, i'm always so professional at work and you kids are so proper. This is a forum, so run along lil boy before your late to class. (tahts sum funi shiIte tho) UNLV DUZ ROK

  22. yes D hunter wuz nasty i Wuz at da pepsi cntr wen he put his nuts on that kidz chin...then got called for a charge?? Shawn marion iz a nice one too butt Greg Anthony? hav to take anderson hunt b4 him...Chris richardson iz a good name rip...LJ way down huh

  23. I wasnt around for most of those guys do i might as well not comment..but one dunk I'll always remember is Deshawn Mitchell's And-one Posterization of that duuude last year. I forgot what team, but he was comin from the baseline and cocked it back and t-bagged him then got the and-one..anyone remember that??

  24. right fkg... fan11, touche. I agree... Now THAT's a good post (you know who I am talking about)... as far as policy, just to reiterate, personal attacks and name-calling will not be tolerated. Everyone knows the rules. If someone gets zapped, that's why and there will be no gray area...
    For what it's worth, Cory Joseph is a class act and an instant boost to any program. Easily.

  25. professionals would never type in text speak

  26. unlvrocks, just have fun with it ...

  27. per Rob i will have fun with it..and not take it so seriously. i guess im just here to enjoy the rebels and i wont let nonsense bother me.

  28. I enjoy fkg's opinion, it's just hard to enjoy when it's so difficult to read and get through.

    Sorry, I'm not a professional short cut texter. If you want to continue to type that way it's your right.... but I prefer your 2nd to last comment.

  29. O.k. i'm sorry. I've been a texting monster I will admit. This is a forum though and I do like to have fun. Don't forget we are all on the same team. Even the band plays a pivotal role!!! Couldn't make it without them!!!

  30. As far as the story is concerned, the Rebs can ill afford to sleep at the wheel in the early going against either team this week. Don't be fooled by Holy Cross's slow start. They've got scorers a-plenty and can make the Rebs look stupid if they come out sluggish.

    I'm sure I don't have to tell you what kind of hole the Rebels will dig for themselves against Louisville if they don't get it going early. UNLV needs forty minutes of solid basketball to even have a chance against Pitino's crew.

    That being said, one of my all time favorite Rebel vert men outside of the aforementioned was Eldridge Hudson. Before he blew his knee out, the guy lived above the rim.

  31. now that looks a lot better and easier to read fkg..and fyi, i am not a student or a band member..

  32. this place shuld be like talkn with your friends, the only person that needs to be professional here is Mr. Miech and he does a great job of that. If i ever saw any of you guys at the game i would by u drink fo sho!!!its alll bout them "Run'n Rebz"!!!!!!!!!!!!

  33. El Hud...what a shame....remember moses scurry when he would dunk lol

  34. They were comparing El Hud to Majic Johnson

  35. Some great stuff back then...but I really feel we may have somthing special right here right now!!!!

  36. No offense to Briiiaan...Briiiaan, but we're talking about dunking basketballs, not donuts. However, for that kid to even crack the practice squad on that team said a lot for his playing ability. He probably could've been a starter on plenty of other programs in the country.

  37. Polee is what this team needs. I hope the fans and students will make up some signs,.. or maybe start some chants of "WE WANT POLEE...WE WANT POLEE"...or both.

    Rob if you could get him for an interview that would be great...A reminder or conformation of his visit in saturday mornings pregame article would be nice

  38. i agree. I wont be there, but would love to hear it online.

  39. Rocks, good tack. I'm gonna do the same. Thanks fkg, but I'll laugh at some things right along with you.
    Withcause, man, I will do what I can. No doubt. Will be tough getting some folks toward the weekend, you know, with the holiday ... but the effort will be there.
    In the meantime, look for a piece on Justin Hawkins tomorrow, first thing here ... Amazing kid! I could go on and on, but I gotta tease you all. Forget about anything he can do on the court, what he's done off it has been incredibly impressive. All I can say for now ...

  40. By the way, the RPI, folks, is still No. 1 in the land ... .8958. That's a healthy margin over No. 2 Duke, at .8008. But Holy Cross figures to plummet it. In another ranking (Pomeroy stats), it's 1-Texas, 2-Florida State, 3-Maryland and 4-UNLV.
    SouthernReb, even tho HCross has five double-digit scorers, the Crusaders leave something to be desired ... they only shoot 43.3 percent and foes are at 47.3 pct. I'm thinking UNLV by 20

  41. I agree with cause..we need to start a chant like..."POOOO-LEEE"..."POOOOO-LEEEE"...we just have to make sure we are pronouncing it correctly!

  42. i think its PO (like PO-lice) then lee. so PO-LEE..it said his name in one of his videos, maybe Rob can answer this????

  43. If you want to list the best dunkers in UNLV history Warren Rosegreen must be listed amoung the best. The guy was awesome!

  44. Hey Rob, not only are they number 1 at cbssports.com but here as well.

    http://www.realtimerpi.com/rpi_Men.html

    Number 1 in two out of three publications isn't bad.

  45. I am new to Las Vegas but I am very familiar with the Runnin Rebels Basketball Program. I am proud to be a University of Memphis fan of 40 years and have weathered some very adverse years and some glory years their also.The all illusive national title has evaded the U of M many times.When I came to Las Vegas I was looking foward to having a great local program to cheer for but it was to my amazement that there is very little support of the UNLV program unless they are winning.
    I have always admired the UNLV's high paced High intensity the schools tradition has.That makes for exciting basketball.
    The Rebels have the strongest RPI rating in the country and they have an extremely great opprotunity to capitalize on National attention this year.The team must focus on fundementals and never rely on individualism.The rebels have a great opprotunity to upset some ranked teams this year and have the talent to do so.
    In comming from Memphis you will find that that town lives for Memphis Basketball no matter the troubles and the achivements of that years team.The one thing that can be relied on is what I call the biggest Sixth man on the team and that is the fans.They make a difference in the FedEx forum and before that the Pyrimid and Mid South Colusium.
    I have seen many topped ranked teams come into any of those venues and get hammered due to the energy the fans inject into the Tigers.I wish the city would get 100% behind the Runnin Rebels and a good way to do that is local televising the home and away games.They do this in memphis trough thick or thin and it keeps the love alive.Sometimes the attendance drops during the lean seasons but the love is still produce.
    It has always helped in recruiting also.
    You guys play Louisville this year an old rival of Memphis and a school who is among the legendary programs in the country.UNLV has my support and I am pulling for them this year.I believe that the Rebels this year can really make an impact and have potential for a good run in the post season Lets get behind the guys and give them a boost into the next level of success beat those Cardinals and good luck

  46. I agree, UNLV over HCross by 20.

  47. I'll always remember DeShawn's SKY HIGH tomahawk from darn near the free throw line that almost was!

  48. Whoa sorry for the irrelevance, still had the page up from earlier...

  49. rodtig, good idea on televising the games on a local tv station. Would be great to have them on channel 13 or 3 or something of that sort. that way they can get on ESPN if they want it also. The MTN REALLY limits the exposure of the entire conference..

  50. Rodtig, great post, and in previous articles it has been exactly what I have been talking about. I lived in Memphis as well, and everyone seems to be a true fan. I even flew back last year to visit family and caught the beatdown they put on Marist while I was there. Nothing like the entire, ENTIRE crowd hollering most of the game. I miss it.

  51. TV coverage has been problematic for years. It really is something that needs to be addressed in the near future by UNLV President Smatresk. I can understand blacking out Southern Nevada during home games to bolster attendance, but some kind of deal should be worked out with one or several local channels.

    Years ago, during the Tark era, they would actually show a replay of the basketball games at midnight on Fox 5. Also, I seem to recall CBS Channel 8 televising away games for the football team for a short period.

    Although I don't mind listening to ESPN 1100am, it would be nice to establish televised coverage with local, UNLV biased sportscasters. I'm sure it would beat the cookie-cutter, assembly line robo-commentators from the Mtn. Channel.

  52. Polee ... as in Edgar Allen Poe-leeee :-)
    great discussions here gents ... bravo

  53. So Poe-Lee(as in David Lee). LIke it. Hope to hear that name alot in the next few years. Just as I wish we got Renardo Sidney.. :/

  54. You can't leave out "Spiderman Burns"

    Was anybody concerned that Shaw spends too much time out at the 3 point line. We need him to rebound.

  55. If both Polee & CJ want to be rebels then Kruger will make it happen. If I am correct a scholarship can be revoked at any time during a players career. If Polee is going to be at the L-Ville game then I feel it will be a lock (he will commit) once he feels the vibes of the T&M, experiences the game atmosphere of the rebel fans, and watches the athleticism of these players he will be hooked. Worst case senario UNLV will walk away with at least one of these ballers IMO, best case we land both, either way were in good shape.

    Holla Back

  56. betonblack,
    I sure hope you are right about the worst casse scenario..and hell I hope the best case scenario happens..our firstyear players next season would probably be top 25 in nation (not true freshmen, first year players including QT, Lopez)

  57. chris, the double edge to that is when the other guys are playing man defense and Shaw takes that guy out on the perimeter, the way Jasper and fellow guards can rebound ... that's a plus
    A pretty good ploy. Man, all I know is I would not want to be a coach. My career would last three games, tops. Would be headache city! :-)
    beton, technically, scholarships are renewed annually. So, uh, yeah ... they're essentially one-year contracts. That's not a world for the meek, that's for sure. Stuff happens in recruiting.

  58. If we get Joseph or Polee I'll be happy. I don't like the idea of taking a scholarship away from a kid. Sounds like a dirtbag move to me and I don't think Coach is that type of guy.

  59. You're right sf, but stuff happens, which this program has seen a lot of in recent years ... Marcus Lawrence, Roberson, Cage, Hamga (or Etienne or whatever he's calling himself lately), Mitchell ... et al ... it happens.
    Given a choice? Not fair. However, nobody is as valuable as Cory Joseph in prep ball at this very moment.

  60. It's true that a lot of players have left the program since Kruger has been coach, but I don't think he's ever blatantly told someone they had to go because they weren't good enough. I could be wrong about this because I recall Cage being told he might not get much playing time if he stuck around. I just don't like how so many fans on here could so ruthlessly drop a player they're rooting for right now. That being said, it sure would be nice to have Polee AND Joseph...

  61. Maybe the extra Scholorship is coming from the Buckley recruit. I wanted to see how his team was doing but, when I went to the website for the Patterson School it said they had to let all the teachers go and they closed the school for the 09-10 school year. Maybe I went to the wrong website. Anybody know anything about this?

  62. Yes, on rebel-net somebody said the same thing-still rumors though. Polee would be off the bench as a freshman and wouldn't be Player of Year potential until probably jr or sr season IMO and Cory Joseph would be Freshman of Year almost uncontested and up for player of year. CJ would probably be our best player from day one as a freshman, I'd take CJ over Polee any day, hell CJ is the #6 PG in America and he does EVERYTHING

  63. I hardly consider Cory Joseph No. 6 in the country. Rankings are a joke sometimes. He's the returning point man on the defending national champions. That's No. 1 in my book. Plus, he does it all. Drives and dunks with either hand, soft 3, fantastic passes, stellar dribbler ... sticky defender. No matter where he goes, anyone who can should see him play as much as possible this season at Findlay. We'll keep you posted on times and days, and it's easy to get to up off Eastern. We'll make sure directions are easy to find on our Findlay home page ... Hmmm, who writes all that??? :-)

  64. Rob,
    good that someone else agrees with me on CJ being the clear cut better player over Polee..but once again, it is doubtful UNLV gets to chose between the two

  65. Would love to have both those kids here! And if we have to cut a kid loose, Kruger will find a way to do it with class. Sorry if it sounds brash but it's a cruel world out there! In any job if your not producing you get fired...this is no different...millions of dollars are at stake and there is no time to worry about feelings...by the way spiderman burns..nice! as far as these games being televised, i remeber racing home after a game to watch the replay on 5. That was so great..gotta find a way to get that back!!!

  66. Even though this is college athletics this is still big time multi million dollar business. Franchises at every level of professional sports and even college athletics cut or release players all the time so they in turn can bring in who they really want. Call it whatever you want, a dirtbag, low-class move but it is the nature of the business and that's the way it goes. If both Polee & CJ want to be rebels you have to make it happen. I promise you Kruger would pull the trigger on someones scholarship for CJ & Polee. Are you kidding me? Do you actually think Lon says "NO" to CJ or Polee when he can remove a scrub from a schollie to land them?

    Has Henry Buckley really signed yet or is it just a verbal? If it is just a verbal Kruger tells both CJ & Polee we've got 2 schollies left, you're who we want and you close the deal. The you turn arnd and tell Buckley "you should have signed when you had the chance, sorry kid life is about opportunities and you just missed yours."

  67. signed..... twice.

  68. Rob, this would make for very interesting conversation with Lon. I wonder how he would deal with this scenario? Over the top to ask?