Posts Tagged ‘Missouri’

Recruits also on edge with coaching situation

March 3, 2010

DeMarcus Phillips is donig his best to convince Marshalltown Community College teammate Will Clyburn to also accept a scholarship offer to play at Iowa State.

“I tell him that every night,” Phillips said. “He said he’s still thinking. There’s a good chance he’ll be here. I feel confident about it.”

He wouldn’t be so sure about Clyburn or himself if Coach Greg McDermott and his staff don’t return. Phillips signed a letter of intent back in November’s early period.

“I’ve heard the rumors,” Phillips said Tuesday from Hilton Coliseum before ISU’s 69-67 overtime loss to Missouri. “I’m just letting it play out and see what happens when the season is over… If they didn’t come back it would affect me in a big way.”

Phillips and Clyburn — along with 6-9 forward John Wilkins from Southeastern CC in Burlington — sat courtside Tuesday.

Clyburn said he is considering several schools at this point, among them are ISU, Wichita State, Northern Iowa, Utah, St. Bonaventure and Duquesne.

He said he has no favorites, but likely would scratch the Cyclones off the list without McDermott & Co.

“I hope they (return) because that would be a big part of my decision,” said Clyburn, who would have two seasons of eligibility. “I’m very close with the coaching staff.”

Phillips is the type of shooting guard ISU desperately needs.

He’s been to several home games and has felt the hurt from seeting the team drop close game after close game.

“Iowa State is really struggling right now,” Phillips said. “The games they are losing are by four or five points. Hopefully I can get on the court and help them get over the hump. I’m pretty exciting about being here next year.”

ISU-Mizzou mbb: my postscript

February 11, 2010

Iowa State fought hard in a 65-56 loss at Missouri Wednesday night with just seven scholarship player suited up.

They were within one point on a handful of occasions late in the second half. They never took the lead and Kim English’s long 3-pointer with 1:45 to play pretty much sealed the game, and ISU’s sixth loss in seven games.

The Cyclones are 13-11 overall and 2-7 in the Big 12 heading into Saturday’s game at No. 1 Kansas.

Which team is more disappointment in being 13-11 you think, ISU or North Carolina after Wed. night’s loss to Duke? That’s a discussion for another day.

Anyways, here are some observations from Wednesday night’s game at Mizzou:

— Lucca Staiger’s presence on the 3-point line is sorely missed. ISU is a combined 7 of 37 (18.9 percent) from beyond the arc over the last two games.

— It may not be in ISU’s best interests that Scott Christopherson is playing as much as he is. The shooting guard clearly is affected by his mononucleosis and his defense and outside shooting accuracy looks to me to be suffering. I’m aware of the numbers problem, but if he’s hurting the team get someone else  — like steady backup Dominique Buckley — in there for him.

— Had LaRon Dendy been in Columbia and not Greenville, S.C., this one could have gone the other way. The Tigers owned the offensive glass — especially late — an area where the 6-9 Dendy would have helped and prevented second and third shot opportunities.

— Craig Brackins really needs to stop forcing crazy impossible, high-degree-of-difficulty shots against double teams. I realize he’s the team’s leading scorer, but there has to be a better shot at the goal than some of the stuff he’s firing up there.

— Chris Colvin may have been 1 for 9 shooting but he got to the rim and into the paint as good as any Cyclone guard in recent memory. He’s not Jamaal Tinsley just yet, but say this for the freshman, he’s aggressive. And that’s a good thing.

— If ISU shoots anywhere close to the season-low 32.8 percent it shot against Mizzou, brace for an ugly, ugly loss to the Jayhawks aa Allen Fieldhouse. It may be ugly anyway.

Recruits hoping for big finish to Cyclones’ season

February 10, 2010

Two recruits already in the fold for Iowa State had front row seats at Hilton Coliseum last Saturday for the Cyclones’ 79-75 loss to No. 10-ranked Kansas State.

ISU’s disappointing season (13-10 overall, 2-6 Big 12) that started with NCAA Tournament dreams isn’t souring their feelings about coming to campus or the future health of the program.  Brewster (N.H.) Academy’s Melvin Ejim and Marshalltown Community College guard DeMarcus Phillips are hoping the current group can carry some positive momentum forward.

“Hopefully they start playing better and start getting some W’s,” Ejim said.

Phillips, who has been out of action since Jan. 1 because of a broken bone in his arm, has seen several games in person this season and keeps in contact with a lot of the players.

It’s not been an easy stretch for them. ISU plays Wednesday night at Missouri.

“They been struggling,” Phillips said. “They started off fast. The last few games have been rough. They’ll get it back together though.”

Both guards believe they have skills that can be of immediate help.

Phillips said he was leading the conference in scoring before having to have screws inserted below his right wrist. He’s hoping to return to the lineup very soon.

“I can be a big help at the 1 or 2 guard,” Phillips said. “I can help on defense. I can hit the jumper and make plays when they need it. I think I fit in pretty well with this Iowa State team…We’ll get back to the top of the Big 12 hopefully.”

The 6-6, 205-pound Ejim also has high hopes for himself.

“My jump shot is better and I’ve been working on my handle,” Ejim said. “I’m coming along as a player. Hopefully I come in and really play a lot and play well. I’m the type of player that with my intensity I can help bring up this team.”

Ejim signed his letter of intent back in November, but was finally taking his official visit.

It was the second time he’s been inside Hilton for a game.

“It doesn’t get any better,” Ejim said. “The amount of people that are here all the time and the support…it’s going to be a crazy place to play. I’m excited.”

Beaverton, Ore., center Jordan Railey will join ISU’s recruiting class in the spring. There could be more depending on Craig Brackins’ NBA decision and Marquis Gilstrap’s luck in asking the NCAA for a sixth season of eligibility.

“There will be a whole lot of talent here,” Phillips said.

Has he tried to convince Brackins to stay for his senior season?

“When I asked him about it he just laughed it off,” Phillips said. “It’ll be exciting to see what he does. I hope he does (stay).”

The Big 12’s dance card

March 4, 2009

The old guard is back atop the Big 12 Conference standings and looking toward a postseason run.

Kansas, Oklahoma and Missouri are the league’s Big Three teams and safely in the field of 65. I think we can all agree on that.

The next tier is where it gets tricky. Who else deserves bids?

This is a league where every year at least five teams and probably six should be playing past the conference tournament.

The way I see it, there’s five pretty solid locks, especially after Oklahoma State’s uber-important victory Tuesday night over Kansas State.

That was a do-or-die game for the ‘Cats, who fell to 20-10 and 8-7. They’re toast, unless they win four games in four days next week in Oklahoma City, a feat that’s never been accomplished in Big 12 tournament history.

Good luck with that guys.

Past the Big Three, it’s Texas and Oklahoma State — each with identical 20-9 overall and 9-6 league records — whose resumes stand tallest before the selection committee.

Texas A&M has a chance to crash the party if its winning streak reaches a half-dozen and  probably beyond. The Aggies (21-8, 7-7) have to win at Colorado and beat Missouri at home. Have to.

A couple wins at the Ford Center next week wouldn’t hurt in solidifying their standing.

It’s a team that’s on a serious roll. Ask Iowa State, which was run out of the gym in the second half of an 87-69 loss in College Station last weekend.

Here’s what I’ve got right now: Five teams in the NCAA field and one on the bubble.

Thoughts?