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Tuesday, January 17, 2012

UNC coach: I apologized to players - AP College BBAll Poll- Ohio St. dismisses two defensive backs

Syracuse is a runaway No. 1 in The Associated Press' college basketball poll for the sixth straight week.
The Orange, one of three unbeatens entering play Monday, received 60 first-place votes from the 65-member national media panel.
Kentucky was second with four first-place votes, followed by Baylor, which got its first No. 1 vote this season on the day it lost for the first time this season, 92-74to Kansas.
Duke and Missouri moved up four places to fourth and fifth, while Ohio State, Kansas, North Carolina, Michigan State and Georgetown round out the top 10.
Unbeaten Murray State moved from No. 15 to No. 12.
Illinois moved in at No. 22. Saint Mary's, Calif. is No. 24, its first appearance this season.
Gonzaga and Seton Hall dropped out of the poll.

UNC coach: I apologized to players

North Carolina coach Roy Williams said he apologized Monday to the five players left on the court for the final 14.2 seconds of his team's 33-point loss to unranked Florida State.
The coach said on his radio show that he was not aware that he had left the quintet of reserves and walk-ons on the Tucker Center floor Saturday -- while he and most of the rest of the team left early to avoid the court-rushing crowd -- until he watched the game-tape of the loss.
Roy Williams said Monday he only pulled his players off the court Saturday due to safety concerns relating to Florida State fans rushing the court.
"I said, 'Guys, I apologize. There was a miscommunication between (assistant) coach (Joe) Holladay and myself. I would never have left you out there to play the game.' " he said. "I was trying to get my entire team off the court, apologize to Florida State, make sure they weren't interpreting it the wrong way; I was just doing it for safety."
Williams, whose team dropped to No. 8 in both polls after the most lopsided loss since he became coach at UNC in 2003, said he started to become concerned about the raucous crowd towards the end of the game. At the end of UNC's loss to UNLV in Las Vegas earlier this season, a female manager got pushed to the ground by rushing fans, and Williams said he was trying to avoid a repeat of that.
"Coach (Holladay) said, 'We're going to have problems getting off of this court. Because they're already in the aisles, we're going to have problems,' " said Williams.
Williams says he tried to explain the issue to an official standing in front of the team's bench, but said the referee responded with,"I don't know what to tell you."
During a dead ball timeout, Williams said he spoke with Florida State coach Leonard Hamilton about the safety issue and Hamilton agreed that Williams should take his players off the court.
"He's always sensible on things like that," Williams said Monday. " ... So I turned to Joe Holladay, and I motioned and said, 'Come on.' And I took about three steps -- and you can see it on TV ... Leonard says something, he says, 'Roy, your players.' And I turned around and said, 'Come on.' You can see me motion my arm again. And I take off, but I stop and I try to congratulate as many (Florida State) players as I can. ... I said to every player, 'Congratulations on the win.' I said to the assistant coaches, 'Please don't be offended by this.' And everybody said, 'Coach, we understand.' "
UNC assistant coach C.B. McGrath, strength and conditioning coach Jonas Sahratian and two managers stayed on the sideline to help the remaining Tar Heels players get off the court when the game ended. Williams said he waited outside his locker room for all of his players, and when it took a while for Holladay and walk-on Patrick Crouch to arrive, Williams asked Holladay what took Crouch so long.
"He said, 'He got caught up in the crowd,' and I didn't know what the crap he was talking about," Williams said Monday.
Williams, angry at the game's outcome, said he didn't talk to his team about the game immediately afterwards, or during Sunday's clinic with the Special Olympics. He said he didn't realize what had happened with the five remaining players until he watched the game tape.
"Every prospect, every walk-on I have ever had -- if I eat steak, you're going to eat steak; whatever happens to every scholarship player, you have to do. I would never leave five kids out there," Williams said. "If I was going to do that, why wouldn't I stay out there? I saw it happen one time on TV, and I thought, 'Why would they leave those kids out there?' "

Ohio St. dismisses two defensive backs
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- New Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer has dismissed two players for off-the-field problems.
Ohio State spokesman Jerry Emig confirmed Sunday that defensive backs Dominic Clarke and DerJuan Gambrell have been released from their scholarships.
Clarke, a redshirt sophomore from Frederick, Md., has been charged with drunken driving and also had been arrested on a charge of disorderly conduct after allegedly discharging a BB gun on campus. No one was hurt in the latter incident.
Gambrell, a freshman from Toledo, was also discharged for a "violation of team rules," but Ohio State did not specify what that violation was.

Osborne: Frank Solich needs to be honored by Nebraska
Current Ohio coach Frank Solich lasted six seasons at Nebraska in the tough job of having to follow in the footsteps of the great Tom Osborne. Despite a 58-19 overall record in those six seasons, Solich was shown the door by current Pitt athletic director Steve Pederson after Nebraska went 9-3 during the 2003 regular season.
Now, nine years later, Osborne wants Solich to come back to be honored at a yet-to-be-determined event. From Huskerextra.com:
“I talked to Frank about that (Friday) morning, and would really like to do that,” Osborne said. “The big problem has been finding the right time to do it. But we’re trying to find a time when we might be able to do something like that.”
Was Solich receptive to the idea?
“He didn’t say no,” Osborne said with a chuckle.
Solich, a Nebraska alumnus, seemed less optimistic, or perhaps more humble, when asked about a potential return to Lincoln.
“Hey, the thing is, people are sick of hearing about me back there. You know that,” Solich said.
Time heals some wounds, but your thoughts, Huskers fans?

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