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Arrests leave Arkansas in underdog role

(AP Photo/Chris O'Meara, File)

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) Arkansas coach Mike Anderson says he was "blindsided" by a tumultuous offseason for the Razorbacks, one that included the arrests of three players on allegations of using counterfeit money.

Still, entering his fifth season at Arkansas - his 22nd overall at the school, including 17 as an assistant - Anderson remains optimistic the program can build on last year's second-place finish in the Southeastern Conference.

Led by SEC Player of the Year Bobby Portis, the Razorbacks finished 27-9 last season and reached their NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2008.


Louisville probe: Recruits got escorts?

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) Louisville coach Rick Pitino has apparently said all he plans to say for now about the troubling allegations outlined in a book by an escort that has led to a sex scandal looming over his men's basketball program.

Pitino was mum about the allegations on Saturday, but questions continue to swirl after the online release of Katrina Powell's book, "Breaking Cardinal Rules: Basketball and the Escort Queen." The 104-page book was published by an affiliate of the Indianapolis Business Journal and is scheduled for release Oct. 12, though the publisher said it could be sooner.


UMKC puts asst. in escort case on leave

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) Missouri-Kansas City has placed men's basketball assistant coach Andre McGee on paid administrative leave as it investigates allegations that he hired an escort to provide sex for recruits while at Louisville.

A statement issued Friday evening said that it was aware of the allegations and said it had already initiated its own review.


Michigan's Irvin may be back for opener

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) The optimism surrounding the Michigan basketball team this season is predicated on one main thing - better health for the team's top players.

Coach John Beilein says swingman Zak Irvin should at least be back on the practice court by the start of the season. The school announced Sept. 9 that Irvin was having back surgery and would miss 6-to-8 weeks. The Wolverines open the season Nov. 13 against Northern Michigan.


Kansas awaits word on freshman Diallo

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) Touted freshman Cheick Diallo has been cleared to begin practicing with Kansas this week.

He's still awaiting word from the NCAA on whether he can play this season.


Indiana back after tumultuous offseason

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) The new rule in college basketball allowing teams to begin practice two weeks earlier is one that is being embraced by Indiana coach Tom Crean.

Indiana opens practice for the season on Friday with a pair of workouts and they will be back at work Saturday.


Rowan arrives to help depleted NC State

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) Maverick Rowan arrived just in time to help short-handed North Carolina State.

The freshman wing was a late addition to the Wolfpack's recruiting class, a player who reclassified to graduate from high school over the summer instead of waiting until 2016. He joins a team that needed him badly, both from a numbers standpoint and the fact that his skillset appears to fit perfectly on a team with some significant losses from last year's NCAA Sweet 16 team.


7 touted freshmen to lead Washington

SEATTLE (AP) Midway through Lorenzo Romar's news conference on Thursday the Washington coach was asked if he could assess each of his new players.

"All nine of them?" Romar asked incredulously, half-joking.


Utah unveils $36M practice facility

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) Utah unveiled a $36 million basketball practice facility Thursday with dramatic upgrades from what players and coaches were accustomed to inside the university's 46-year-old arena.

The 90,000-square-foot building will house the men's and women's programs and features two 12,000-square-foot practice gyms, recruiting lounges, a yoga room, rooftop terrace, a nutrition center and underground tunnels to the arena. Coaches' offices have a panoramic view of the mountains. There is also a new strength and conditioning room and an athletic training center.


Court nixes plan to pay NCAA players $5K

(AP) -- A federal appeals court struck down a plan to pay college football and basketball players in a ruling that NCAA leaders believe supports their contention that the athletes are students and not professionals.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals agreed Wednesday that the NCAA's use of college athletes' names, images and likenesses in video games and TV broadcasts violated antitrust laws, but vacated a judge's decision that would have allowed schools to make deferred cash payments to athletes of up to $5,000 per year.

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