Off The Boards by Jack Scheuer

November 20th Edition

That basketball is a big man’s game has never been more obvious than just  by looking at the rosters of the top teams, and also of the best up-and-coming prospects. Athlon Sports, which arguably puts out the most informed information of the preseason publications, names  the top 100 players of this year’s freshmen class, and only TWO of them are under 6-feet tall.  Sahvir Wheeler, at 5-10 is playing for Georgia, while 5-11 Markese Jacobs, sees action at DePaul. And it’s not just the freshmen but, the little guys are vanishing everywhere. Among the top 20 teams in the nation, only Virginia (Kihei Clark), and Memphis (Tyler Harris) have anyone under 6-feet seeing any kind of action. I know it’s just the sign of the times, and that the players are bigger, stronger, and better then ever, but I still miss the likes of Muggsy Bogues and Spud Webb.

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Saint Mary’s (Cal), must have the biggest recruiting budget in the country. The Gaels, who lost to Villanova in a first-round NCAA game last season, have players from the following places: Australia, (4), New Zealand (2), and one each from England, Latvia and Estonia. The Britain native is a rather large Aaron Menzies, who stands at 7-3, 265. He is a red shirt senior who transferred in from Seattle. 

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Trivia Time: Who is the last Penn player to play in the NBA ? Answer at the end of the column.

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Before we go any further, congratulations to a true Philadelphia treasure, Jefferson coach Herb Magee, who celebrated win number 1,100 last night.

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By popular demand, here is this season’s all name team: Welcomed back again is the lovely Juicy Landrum from the Baylor women’s team; then there is Longwood’s Shabooty Phillips : Wangang Tut, from Omaha;  Montana State’s Finn Fleute , and Rade Kukobat, who is at Eastern Illinois. Longest name winner goes to Nebraska’s  6-6 junior forward Thorir Thorbjarmnarson, an Iceland native.

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This and That: St. Joe’s transfer Fresh Kimble is averaging 6.8 ppg, 4 assists, in 19.5 minutes at Louisville; Quadre Green, who moved from Kentucky to Washington, has a 5.7 points per game average with  a team high 6 dimes. Both are Neumann-Goretti grads… Freshman Jameer Nelson Jr., son of the Hawk great, leads George Washington in points (12.5 ) and assists (4.5) …. It’s very early, but Temple’s Nate Pierre-Louis is looking like a Big 5 Player of the Year candidate. He was last season’s Most Improved….North Carolina freshman phenom Cole Anthony is averaging 27.3  in his first three games as a Tar Heel. Dad is former pro Greg….Drexel had 103 turnovers in its first five games which would indicate the Dragons might want to slow it down a little….Scotty Pippen Jr., a 6-1 guard at Vanderbilt is averaging  7.0 ppg  while playing 25 minutes per outing. His coach, making his debut, is Jerry Stackhouse…. La Salle’s 6-11 freshman Brandon Stone is an effective shooter from long range. Between the 7th and 11th grades, he grew 10 inches.

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Answer to Trivia Time : During the 2002 season, Ira Bowman played in three games for the 76ers.

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