1). Slamming the Cats? Kentucky coach John Calipari said on his postgame radio show Tuesday night that he, DeMarcus Cousins, John Wall, Patrick Patterson and Eric Bledsoe will pose for a cover shot for Slam magazine this morning. That’s a nice little addition to the recruiting portfolio. Calipari said they originally wanted just him and John Wall on the cover, and he countered with asking them to put the whole team on and leave him off. Slam countered that they’d do one with him, Wall, Cousins and Patterson. But Calipari said the guys decided that if Bledsoe wasn’t going to be on the cover too, they weren’t going to do it. Slam relented.
2). Late-night wars. One problem with 9 p.m. starts? Patterson arrived in the press room for his postgame interviews at ten minutes till midnight Tuesday night. There is no explanation the NCAA can provide that will convince me that allowing games to start at 9 o’clock or later benefits the so-called “student athlete.
3). Speaking of the NCAA, a major case for athlete rights is moving forward. A judge refused to dismiss Ed O’Bannon’s class-action antitrust suit against the NCAA on Monday. O’Bannon claims that former athletes should be compensated if their likeness is used by the NCAA in licensing deals for video games, advertisements and on apparel. It’s only fair. Expect the NCAA, whose licensing deals are estimated at more than $4 billion, to fight this like it’s Armageddon. [New York Times report]
4). Rutgers women’s basketball coach C. Vivian Stringer was suspended for one game by the university for using a male player in practice. She had nine women, and needed a 10th to fill in. She used a man. Now she’ll sit for Rutgers’ game against Seton Hall. There are rules about these things. The NCAA has bylaws (of course) regarding who can and can’t practice. Whatever. The rule is stupid, Rutgers is stupid for enforcing it, and if I were Stringer, I’d be taking my Hall of Fame resume elsewhere. With all the rules being broken in college sports, this is nothing. [Newark Star Ledger]
5). I’m tired of hearing “Who dat?” First, it’s a knockoff of what the Cincinnati Bengals used in the 1980’s, but those things happen. Still, the treatment of the origins of the phrase “Who dat?” in Amy Davidson’s always enlightening “Close Read” blog at The New Yorker gives the phrase a little perspective. Actually, a lot of perspective. [Close Read]