Links are pretty scarce today...you've been warned...I think I used up all the good ones yesterday...
That Keon Lawrence transfer talk? Quashed, for now.
The charismatic guard from Newark, N.J., entered the season with high expectations, but the shooting slump made for a tough first half of the season for Lawrence.
The low point came on Dec. 22 when, down by one and with time running out, Lawrence mishandled the basketball and it rolled out of bounds, sealing a 59-58 victory for Illinois, its eighth straight against Missouri.
The normally buoyant Lawrence, who was always one of the first players out of the locker room ready to talk after a game, was now much more sullen with the media, breaking down games with a sad, frustrated tone in his voice.
"I always put a lot of pressure on myself and coach tells me I shouldn’t do that," Lawrence said. "I try not to put pressure on myself, but I always do. I can’t help it."
Lawrence flirted with the idea of transferring in the midst of his slump, but after scoring a season-high in the win over Texas, he was back to his old self, giving colorful answers to every question with his trademark grin and happy-go-lucky demeanor.
So the big question: Keon, are you officially out of your slump now?
"I don’t know man," he answered with an optimistic smirk. "Hopefully."
Pretty interesting-looking series going on at Scout.com...yesterday was Part 1 of an 8-part series entitled the "Gary Pinkel Program Building Series". Volume 1 is "Systems Approach to Building a Program".
Following up on the Pinkel articles by Gabe Dearmond and Dave Matter that I linked to yesterday, Graham Watson put out something similar yesterday afternoon.
Finally, Stewart Mandel talks about what we learned this bowl season.
- You can at least rest assured knowing that the powers that be across college football are fully aware of the dissatisfaction surrounding this year's bowl season. The games were dreadful. The TV ratings were awful. (The Michigan-Florida Capital One Bowl did better than the Sugar, Fiesta and Orange bowls.) It's no coincidence Mike Slive, John Swofford and others are suddenly pushing hard for a plus-one system.
- Finally, there isn't going to be a playoff. You know what else? There isn't going to be a playoff. Oh, and by the way? There isn't going to be a playoff. Just thought you should know.