Saturday's List of 13: Random thoughts with weekend here.......
13) How much money is enough? That’s a big question being asked now in these coaching searches; when a mid-major pays a guy $1M+ a year and he is happy and winning there, why would he uproot his family, move halfway across the country to rebuild a program in a harder league with worse players than he has at the mid-major?
A school like Minnesota is a small fish in a very large pond; no successful mid-major coach with an ounce of sense would go there unless he’s unhappy where he is now. You lose 2-3 years in a row, you're fired.
12) Then there’s UCLA, whose expectations are so stupidly high that no one they want will listen to them. They should hire Kareem Abdul-Jabbar to coach the team, be the face of the program, as long as he hires a veteran tactician to be his “bench coach” and a couple younger recruiters to bring in players. If Wake Forest had fired Jeff Bzdelik, he would’ve been ideal for the tactician role.
11) If UCLA wants former assistant Mark Gottfried as head coach, it won’t be cheap; he has a $3.25M buyout at NC State, which may be one of the few places where the expectations are as dumb as they are in Westwood.
10) Buster Posey/Justin Verlander signed lucrative extensions Friday. Giants have so much money tied up in Posey now you wonder if they’ll move him to first base to extend his career as a hitter. Catchers tend to fade out quicker than other position players.
9) According to Forbes Magazine, which I quote a lot but have never actually read, the average major league franchise is now worth $774M.
8) Maine Black Bears were 12-20 this year, are 23-36 last two years; their claim to fame is beating Florida Gulf Coast in December, but word comes out that Justin Edwards, their best player, wants to play “at a higher level” of Division I and will transfer out of Maine, similar to what Seth Curry did when he bolted Liberty for Duke a couple years ago. Edwards scored 16.7 ppg this year; curious to see where he winds up.
7) Louisville 77, Oregon 69-- Russ Smith has gone from Russ-diculous to Russ-tacular; he had 31 here. Game with Duke Sunday should be fun.
6) Michigan 87, Kansas 85, OT-- Jayhawks led 68-54 with 6:51 left; at no point watching this game did I think they would lose. Going to be a long summer for Bill Self. .
5) Duke 71, Michigan State 61-- Good thing Blue Devils pilfered Seth Curry from Liberty; he had 29 in this one. Duke bench took one shot.
4) Florida 62, Florida Gulf Coast 50-- Eagles led by 11 early on, but they turned ball over 20 times. Gators were too quick on perimeter, too big inside, just too good. Quite a run by FGCU, though, a fun team to watch.
3) "I think the referees got the calls right. I don't think it was a hard foul. I think the one involving LeBron against [Carlos] Boozer, that was flagrant. I think the officials got it right. I think that it's almost embarrassing that LeBron would complain about officiating." Celtics GM Danny Ainge, for whatever reason discussing the Miami-Chicago game this week
2) "Danny Ainge needs to shut the f--- up and manage his own team. He was the biggest whiner going when he was playing and I know that because I coached against him." Pat Riley, responding in a statement to Ainge's criticism of Lebron James. Riley doesn't like the Celtics much.
1) For what its worth, the Celtics play in Miami April 12.
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