Not sure how Zach LaVine, the former Bothell High standout who bolted to the NBA after one season at UCLA, is going to make the transition from college to the pros.
However, I’m willing to wager the Minnesota Timberwolves rookie guard is going to win the 2015 NBA slam-dunk contest that’s going to be held at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York next February.
LaVine is simply amazing in the air.
Just watch a few highlights from this weekend at the Seattle Pro Am thanks to Brian Chen at Bleacher Report.
MONDAY MORNING LINKS:
— Gary Payton II has enrolled at Oregon State determined to establish his own legacy apart from his famous father who starred for the Beavers and Seattle Sonics.
— Stanford athletic director Bernard Muir is on the 10-member NCAA Tournament Selection committee. Utah State athletic director Scott Barnes is the committee chair and Oklahoma athletic director Joe Castiglione is the vice chair. The other members are Conference USA associate commissioner Judy MacLeod, LSU AD Joe Alleva, North Carolina-Asheville AD Janet Cone, Michigan State AD Mark Hollis, BYU AD Tom Holmoe, Creighton AD Bruce Rasmussen and Northeastern AD Peter Roby.
— According to Jeff Goodman at ESPN.com, more than 600 Division I college basketball players have transferred in 2014. Think of it this way, that’s about two players per every team in the country walking out the door because they’re unhappy. So you may understand why some coaches consider this fairly recent trend very disturbing while others such as Oregon’s Dana Altman have embraced this new form of recruiting. The negative stigma associated with transfers is disappearing. Gonzaga’s Mark Few told CBSsports.com: “The thing that’s great about it is, you get the best evaluation tool ever: Division I basketball. With statistics, film, references from guys you trust. You’re not missing on much when you take a transfer; you pretty much know what you’re getting for the most part.”
— North Carolina will allow former scholarship athletes who left early for the pros a chance to return to school on scholarship to attain their degrees. The back-to-school program is likely a response to the recent academic fraud scandal that rocked the administration.
—Brandon Austin, who has transferred twice following two sexual assault investigations, has landed at Northwest Florida State junior college. The 6-6 forward was a former top-50 recruit in 2013 before receiving a scholarship to Providence. He was suspended before the 2013-14 season following a sexual assault investigation. The charges were dropped. Austin transferred to Oregon where he was recently dismissed after a sexual assault investigation. The charges were also dropped.