Final Four Primer
—My Final Four preview filed to VegasInsider.com yesterday.
–I’m on a 12-3 run in college hoops and you can check out my pick pack for today right here.
–Hard to find four better coaches than the ones stalking the sidelines today. Below are their career records in the NCAA Tournament:
1-Mike Krzyzewski: 86-26 (76.8%)
2-John Calipari: 47-14 (77.0%)
3-Tom Izzo: 46-16 (74.2%)
4-Bo Ryan: 24-13 (64.9%)
—Check out these Final Four player props per Sportsbook.ag via VI.
–As I’ve pointed out on Twitter several times in recent months, I’ve been worried sick (as a UF alum) about the distinct possibility that this could be the offseason that Billy Donovan finally makes the jump to the NBA. Obviously, this notion became common knowledge Thursday as Donovan’s name was featured on the ticker for a solid 24 hours following a report from ESPN’s Marc Stein. It wasn’t all bad news for the Gators this week, however, as Dorian Finney-Smith announced that he would return for his senior season. Michael Frazier II made a surprising decision last week when he signed with an agent and opted to turn pro early. Frazier will be one of the best shooters in this Draft, but he’s probably a mid-to-late second-rounder at best.
–If Donovan does bolt for the NBA, Shaka Smart won’t be a candidate for UF after he left VCU to take the Texas job. That’s a huge coup for the Longhorns. I’m not sure if VCU has any interest in bringing back Anthony Grant but even if it did, I would think Grant will hold out for the possibility of landing the Florida job. Remember, Grant was on the plane in Virginia ready to head back to Gainesville with Jeremy Foley in 2007 when Donovan called Foley and told him he was having second thoughts about taking the Orlando Magic job.
–With Richard Pitino and Gregg Marshall off the list of Alabama candidates, my guess is that Bill Battle goes for Steve Prohm at Murray St. My recommendation, however, would be to go after BYU’s Dave Rose.
–FSU’s Xavier Rathan-Mayes has announced that he’ll return for his sophomore campaign. With a big recruiting class coming in, the ‘Noles should have a lot of talent next year.