The Twitter-verse exploded with news of John Wooden's health slipping quickly. In fact, for a few hours last night, a few sources reported him to be dead. My pal and co-BSer wrote me an e-mail last night telling me that news was breaking that Wooden was in poor health. I responded that wouldn't it be news if, at 99, Wooden's health suddenly turned positive?
Wooden's ties to Purdue of course, make this one close to home, and the fact that he's so widely respected makes it very worthy sports news...but, a 99 year old being in poor health isn't buzz-worthy, in my opinion. A man coming back to life after being dead for a few hours, at any age though, is pretty large news.
Pac 10 Getting Aggressive
Good for the Pac10 and SEC. Both have pretty much said, "Suck it, Jim Delany." In so many words. They've both decided to be proactive in their handling of the BT's expansion and have figuratively urinated over large areas and universities as if to mark their territory.
But, what Rivals and others are reporting this morning is truly large. The Western 16, or "Pac 16" or whatever you'd like to give it for a working name, might include Texas, Oklahoma and a slew of other Big 12 schools. This would tidily-fit Mizzou and others into the BT idea...I don't think that's a coincidence...Keep your ears and eyes sharp...lots of news will be percolating in the coming weeks/months, regardless of what Jim Delany tells us.
On the other side of the coin, the Big East, Big 12 and ACC seem to be wilting on the imaginary vine as they've done nothing more than hire spokesmen and make limp-wristed statements about how no one should mess with their schools. What develops will surely be very interesting as the college sports world shifts and changes.
Our pal, Dan, a regular BS reader sent us a report of what he heard as Coach Painter sounded off at a recent speaking engagement. We thought there was some pretty interesting stuff divulged...so here are some highlights:
-Painter's job, and his hobby is basketball. He doesn't fish or golf...he's just a basketball junkie.
In my opinion, there are positives and negatives about it. Just like when a coach becomes too focused on, I don't know, fishing (for example), it can be a negative too. But I digress.
-Like many of you, he wishes Hale was playing for him this coming season...he thinks he'd be an immediate contributor.
-He talked about trends and personality and habits being important while recruiting, specifically regarding academics and rebounding. I think they're both similar in that getting good grades and rebounding aren't particularly fun things to do, but they're important in Painter's opinion. Hummel was both a good student and a good rebounder in HS, and it's carried over into college. He thinks Carroll will be similar in that he's always been a rebounding-minded player in his earlier basketball career...and is a pretty good student to boot.
-He talked about his respect for Keady and what he did for 25 years and how he hopes he can do the same thing.
-(Of course) He can't wait to have the Mackey renovation completed.
-He believes NCAA violation punishment/consequences should follow the coach when he leaves a school. He didn't name names, and I can't think of anybody that fits this description at this time.
The great thing I'm hearing over and over from Painter is that he understands that success and greatness breeds success and pushes the goals to higher and higher plateaus. He also understands that talent alone doesn't get the job done...and the hard work, sweat and blood is an important part of the equation. What's not to like?
Thanks a lot, Dan for the heads up and report.