Round up the suspects, Big 12 expansion isn’t dead. The Big 12’s board of directors announced Tuesday that it has authorized commissioner Bob Bowlsby to explore candidates for the possibility of growing the 10-team conference.
Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby and Baylor interim president David Garland agree that Baylor has sullied the reputation of the conference with the Bears’ sexual assault scandal. But Garland said Baylor has begun to fix the problems, starting with the hiring of athletic Mack Rhoades from Missouri.
SEC football coaches and players didn’t duck the topic of recent shootings involving black citizens and police officers. They have the unique opportunity to know law enforcement officials better than most in the public and should take advantage of that connection.
The spotlight of SEC media days was supposed to illuminate Missouri’s football program, new head coach Barry Odom and the MU players. Instead, news of athletic director Mack Rhoades leaving for Baylor dominated the day.
Over the past few years, the SEC has been the domain of Florida, Missouri and Georgia. Missing from the group is tradition-rich Tennessee, but the days of recent mediocrity should end this season. With 17 returning starters, including quarterback Joshua Dobbs, the Vols have advantages over others in the division.
SEC Media Days opened its four-day run in Hoover, Ala., and while league officials and team personnel touted the league, they also spoke of the ugly issues in college sports over the past few months, namely acts of domestic violence and sexual assaults by athletes.
The Big 12 returned the football championship game to its lineup beginning in 2017, perhaps the boldest move by the conference since it started losing teams six years earlier. The Big 12 studied the data, saw the advantages and took action.
With victories and championships come job security, and there seems to be plenty of that among most coaches of major-league and college teams in the Kansas City area. But some are on the hot seat. Here’s a ranking of 10 coaches from most to least secure.
No one in basketball history accomplished more to break racial barriers in the sport than John McLendon, and for that, McLendon was elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame as a contributor in 1978. McLendon, who died in 1999 at age 84, will re-enter the Hall, this time as a coach. He was announced as a member of the Class of 2016 earlier this week.
Blair Kerkhoff has been with The Star since 1989. He was recognized Monday at the Final Four in Houston as part of the latest United States Basketball Writers Association Hall of Fame class. Here’s part of Vahe Gregorian’s presentation as Kerkhoff was inducted.
North Carolina coach Roy Williams felt like he had to get these Tar Heels to the Final Four. His point of reference for disappointment is the 1997 Kansas team, which was 34-1 and ranked first in the nation before losing to Arizona in the NCAA Tournament.
Oklahoma guard Buddy Hield was the Big 12 player of the year as a junior, and that wasn’t good enough. He improved in several areas and returned to become one of the nation’s top players and has led the Sooners to the Final Four.
On the basketball court, North Carolina and Syracuse advanced to the Final Four. Off the floor, they failed to run clean programs in the eyes of the NCAA. Hall of Fame coaches Roy Williams and Jim Boeheim are dealing with the clouds over their programs.
The NCAA has been playing wait-and-see when it comes to religious freedom laws or constitutional amendments running through statehouses. But the organization signaled a stronger stance on Thursday if that includes a site ban, hoop-loving states like Missouri and North Carolina could feel the impact.
The Star's Sam Mellinger, Blair Kerkhoff, Jesse Newell and Vahe Gregorian discuss the Kansas Jayhawks' 64-59 loss to the Villanova Wildcats in the NCAA South Regional final Saturday night in Louisville, Ky.