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Husky Men's Basketball Blog

Seattle Times staff reporter Bob Condotta provides a running commentary on the Huskies.

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May 19, 2008 10:00 AM

Pac-10 news

Posted by Bob Condotta

This is the time of year there starts to really not be a lot going on in college basketball, but we will continue here to try to pass along what we find that may be of interest.

Two things today:

--- First is this story out of Arizona where incoming Wildcat recruit Emmanuel Negedu has asked out of his letter-of-intent and says he won't play for UA next season. Scouts Inc. rated him the No. 13 power forward in the country this year. Jeff Goodman of Fox Sports says Arizona is likely to put up a fight to keep Negedu.

--- Next is this from the LA Times updating the possible renovations of Pauley Pavilion. As you read it, those of you who have never been to Pauley may get a sense of what many people often say privately --- that for all of its history, Pauley really isn't the greatest place in the world to see a basketball game. In fact, in terms of sightlines and general amenities, it may be the worst in the Pac-10 (at least you are close to the action everywhere at Gill). But that's obviously going to change in the next few years.

All for now.


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Posted by Randy

11:38 AM, May 19, 2008

Meatball, where are you? Say this all isn't true!! It looks like the great temple at Arizona is crumbling. Negedu bailing out, rumors of Nic Wise leaving, acedemic issues for Brandon Jennings plus the departure of Bayless and now even Budinger (though still not a certainty). This is looking grim. Well, you still have Zane Johnson to lead you to greatness.
Granted, rumors of catastrophe don't always mean anything until the final actions.

Posted by Dave " The Meatball" Armistead

11:42 AM, May 19, 2008

No doubt the leeches will come out and try to take shots at the meatball...Arizona will be just fine though, thanks!

From Previous Thread:10:04 AM, May 19, 2008

MT Husky- Agreed. If Budinger changes his mind and stays in the draft, our New Assistant coaches and Lute will really need to earn their keep next year. With a down Pac-10 I think they will still be one of the top teams, but my national ranking my change a bit. I'll let you all know after June 16th how far I legitamtely see my Cats going.

Negedu, who is rumored to want to back out of his scholarship, is a typical overpriveleged star athlete...they think it's okay to reneg on committment. Lute won't release him out of pricinple, so I figure once he realizes he will lose more by sitting out the year, he will come to his senses. His big problem was that the last time he visitied UofA Kevin O'Neill made him feel terrible. That does not surprise me one bit.

I would be more than surprised if Jennings doesn't qualify as he knows that he will be the general of next years squad.

We'll see what happens, but now some of you understand how messy the last 8 months have been..

Posted by junkman

12:35 PM, May 19, 2008

Yes Meatball, Negedu is obviously another one of those "overpriveledged" Nigerian atheletes.

Don't tell me we're going to get another UA 2nd place finish prediction. As an outside observer it looks like your program may be heading for a bit of a fall. Might be time for Lute to step aside and bring in some new blood. With UA's success in the past couple decades, they should be able to bring in a top notch coach to maintain the program's elite status - but you may not want to wait too long to pull the plug on Lute.

Posted by Dave " The Meatball" Armistead

12:51 PM, May 19, 2008

Junkman- Typical knee jerk reactionary response. Lets see how we look come October, and I will then give you my projections. The way things are going, we could have everyone back outside of Jerryd Bayless, or we could have a miny mutiny. Only time will tell, I am willing to wait, but those of you who want immediate answers, I can guarantee there will be plenty of egg on all of your faces....

Posted by OlyDawg

12:59 PM, May 19, 2008

Did you read the story on Negedu? He didn't even have a host on his trip to UA. Amazing.

And Meatball, tone it down on the overpriveleged crap. This guy had a raw deal signing to a school where the coach vanishes mysteriously after he signs, then he goes on a god-awful recruiting trip. If he has doubts in his mind about where to spend the next 4 years of his life, they are well-founded based on the situation.

Posted by MT Husky

1:13 PM, May 19, 2008

Back to the previous recruiting discussion. I've not heard anyone talk about Aaron Dotson out of Ranier Beach.

Scout.com has him as a 4*. UW is listed as 'med' interest along with about 8 other schools.

Sounds like potentially another local kid that would be great to land.

Does anyone know anything about him?

Posted by patience

2:59 PM, May 19, 2008

meathead,

why don't you just disappear again like you did last season when it came time to make good on our wager?

you and lute, no integrity.

Posted by Dave " The Meatball" Armistead

3:14 PM, May 19, 2008

olydawg- Negedu signed 10 days after Lute's LOA started, so yes he knew what he was getting himself into. He said everything was cool as long as Lute would be back. Unfortunately Kevin O'Neill was around during his visit which is the reason why everyone was misrable. So, what we basically have is a kid who wants us to wipe away his tears because no one made him feel like a Million dollars on his visit? That is overpriveleged and selfish. Lute is back, he has hired 2 higher quality Assistant coaches, and the kid wants to reneg on his inked contract because no one took him out for icecream? Lute flew out to meet him at his home recently to smooth things over, and he now wants out of his committment? No problem with leaving a school high and dry? Too frickin bad baby boy; Lute isn't into babying and this is a breach of contract, so if he wants to continue to cry, he'll have an entire year to do it at home on his mom's shoulders. Even if he does decide to play at UofA, he will have a rough ride as he should never have made his request public. Heck, I'd love to heckle a young man who thinks he is bigger than the program. Accountability is being lost on our youth.

Some people in Tucson have been giving Lute a hard time in the press and in blogs due to the lack of deep tourney success over the last 5 years. He took a LOA for personal reasons, and has come back in the right mind to fix things. First action was getting rid of a cancer of an intermin coach in O'Neill. Second move was getting rid of a legend of UofA Basketball on the playing court, but an ineffective and inexperienced coach in Miles Simon. He replaced them with a guy who has won 2 National Championships and was also an NBA assistant coach, and a highly regarded previous college Assistant coach and well known highschool basketball cordinator. Now people are questioning these moves yet they called for change......it really is quite hysterical.

AAU basketball is much to blame for guys like Negedu. AAU basketball has ruined much of the college game as it pounds into these young players heads that they are entitled to everything under the sun. No surprise that guys like Mayo walk around with open palms; they've been pampered and told they are the best all of their lives. No longer does a kid feel priveleged that University's offer them scholarships and a chance at playing Elite Basketball and getting an education...it's all now about what school will get me to the next level, how much Tv exposure, and the school is being paid a favor by them coming.

It's sad, but that is the state of many college basketball programs. Negedu is no different. I hope he enjoys his year on the sideline, or he opens up his eyes and realizes that one of the most historied programs wants him to play there. Have some pride son.

Posted by Everett fan

4:30 PM, May 19, 2008

So Meathead, it sounds like you can't stand the guy - why would Lute want him in the first place if he's such a creep?
Make up your mind, you can't have it both ways

Posted by wayupwaydown

4:42 PM, May 19, 2008

I don't understand why Lute would want a player who doesn't want to be there.

The kid is young and Lute did let him down. Remember that the leave of absence was for an indeterment amouont of time, generally thought to be a few weeks when it was firts announced. Then Lute bails for the entire season leaving all the recurits in limbo.

If I was a kid who signed and got crapped on by Lute, and then took a recruiting trip from hell and no one bothered to make mefeel at home or welcome, I would have second thoughts too. Especially since Lute has not even explained himself for taking the leave in the first place. What is to keep it from happening again, or Lute just bailing for good?

Lute caused the problem. He should let the kid go. That would require some integrity on his part. I don't see it as the kid not having integrity, I see it as the coach needing some.

Posted by SouthSoundDawg

6:56 PM, May 19, 2008

Poor, poor Lute, I feel absolutely horrible for the guy He can no longer get whoever he wants and can't rely on poaching kids from other programs at the last second and he also doesn't have Pastner around anymore to reel in Gaddy.

What about Nic Wise? I heard a rumor that Lute has not even called him to try to get his head right or even ask him whats wrong. The kid basically saved UA's season last year and the head coach appears to not even really care if he stays or goes.

Now we have Negedu, who was set to become the next Fendi Onobun. Who you might ask? Exactly.

Hasn't Jennings also been rumored to want to get out of his LOI as well. While that may not be possible, what he can do is "fail" a class "accidentally" which could make his LOI void only to be made up over the summer making him a recruitable athlete again. I believe there was a kid who did this to UW a couple years ago. DLineman named Goodrum who decided after signing his LOI that he wanted to go to SC so he mysteriously failed a class, failed to qualify and ended up at USC fully qualified by the time school started. Bottom line is if the kid wants out bad enough he will find away and it sounds like even the rats are jumping shit right now at UA.

Worst case scenerio, UA has Zane Johnson, Hill, Horne, Withey, Jacobsen and thats about it. Who is going to handle the ball? Who is going to come off the bench? I see another LOA for good ol Lute coming along.

Sounds like an interesting time to be a Cat fan meaty, but your spin machine appears to be functioning at full capacity. Say what you want about UW basketball the last couple of years but we have stability and are continuously increasing our talent level with kids who truly want to be here and aren't using us for a one year audition for the NBA.

I would be willing to wager that UW finishes this next season with a better Pac-10 record with a minimum of a split in the season series with the Cats. I would still take my dawgs even if the cats end up with Budinger, Jennings and Negedu. I do hope Wise bails though, as he was that teams glue that held them together at the end of last year.

Posted by sequimdawgbob

8:40 PM, May 19, 2008

Who wanted Kevin O'Neill in the first place? When the LOA ended, who suddenly didn't want him?

Go Huskies!

Posted by Law Dawg

9:46 PM, May 19, 2008

Negedu, like all these recruits, have been working their tails off for years to earn the right to be recruited by these top-flight schools. While investment banks and law firms that offer extravagant summer programs and signing bonuses to attract the best and brightest, D-1 basketball programs compete for the top ballers in the nation by making them feel like they are wanted and by offering the most opportunities. Most of these kids are moving across the country (or world in Negedu's case) and are leaving home for the first time in their lives. At the very least, they deserve to feel welcome and at home in the program they are going to donate their talents to. Choosing a program is likely the most important decision these kids will make in their lives as it will help to determine their entire futures and professional careers; Iíd hardly call a guy an over-privileged, selfish baby for wanting to be a part of a program that has his best interest at heart and that will allow him the greatest opportunity to succeed. Negedu signed after Lute promised him the LOA was temporary, and then proceeded to watch the coach abandon his team and recruits as the season went to sh*t.

I personally have seen the recruiting process up close and personal, as one of my best friends was a top recruit in the nation. These kids donít choose a school or program in the recruiting process, they choose a coach. Iím sure Lute assured Negedu, as he promised my buddy years ago, that he would be the head coach for his entire collegiate career and do everything in his power to help him succeed at the collegiate level and reach the next. Instead, Negedu watched Lute leave the program in the lurch while he personally was ignored and taken for granted. Lute breached the unwritten contract between player and coach, so Negedu should be able to breach his LOI to be a part of a program in which he feels welcome. He isnít acting as though he ďdeserves everything under the sun.Ē Considering these guys donít get paid while they generate millions of dollars for their programs, they are entitled at the very least to not be lied to.

On another note, while Lute has had an incredible career and done amazing things for UofA b-ball and the Pac-10, itís time for him to step down. Heís clearly been losing his edge in the latter part of his career, as the Cats repeatedly under-achieve while loaded with 5-star recruits. His teams consistently lack the chemistry needed to win championships and his game-time decision making becomes blatantly worse every year. It seems as though he is unable to connect with his players like he used to, and has made a habit of choosing talent and athleticism over character. Meatstick, if youíre banking on a championship because your hall of fame coach is back, I think youíre in for a long season.

Posted by OlyDawg

8:38 AM, May 20, 2008

Meaty is just getting desperate because he can see the disaster season that UA has coming to them.

I don't doubt that they'll be able to reload with 5 star recruits in the next few years, but Lute made a mess when he left. To bitch and whine, and blame the poorly treated recruits is simply a desperate measure by a now desperate program.

Suck it up and deal with the consequences.

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