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Published: Tuesday, December 19, 2017 @ 10:19 AM
— The likely last chapter of the Cincinnati Bengals’ Marvin Lewis era took another strange turn Monday when he would be interested in returning next season.
Lewis is coaching in the final year of his contract for the first time since 2010, and after falling to 5-9 and officially being eliminated from the playoffs with Sunday’s loss, the Bengals will fall short of the postseason in back-to-back seasons for the first time since 2007-08.
Asked if he wants to be back next year, Lewis said, “I want to coach football.”Asked if he wants to coach football in Cincinnati, he said, “Sure,” before asking the reporter if he was making an offer.
I wasn’t there, but this did not sound too convincing on the radio.
He was probably just trying to say whatever he had to in order to get the topic out of the way.
Lewis is definitely a football man first. He doesn’t like to deal with the media, which is his prerogative, and he definitely doesn’t like to talk about things other than football or the present.
I believe he wants to keep working in the NFL. I believe he could have already decided he would rather do it somewhere else.
I also don’t know why the Bengals would have him back.
This season has obviously spiraled out of control. Even if Lewis came into it on good footing, a change would seem to be in order.
The way the whole thing was reported is still a little odd to me.
I don’t doubt the veracity of Adam Schefter’s report. I’m sure he got it from good sources. I just don’t quite understand why anyone who would have this information would be willing to share it at this time.
Maybe Lewis told the wrong person and that’s how it got out. Maybe he really did want to stick it to the Bengals by quitting before he could be fired, but the way he is acting since the reports was published I tend to doubt that.
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One of the things I’ve learned about how news breaks is this: A lot of stuff is out there before it’s finished. Before something is finished, there’s always a chance it can change, so publishing it too early brings some risks.
What is right today could be wrong tomorrow if someone changes their mind.
Maybe Lewis has made his decision but just doesn’t want to talk about it, or maybe he really told some people he is ready to leave then had second thoughts.
(Hue Jackson telling reporters in Cleveland, “I’ve kind of known about Marvin,” lends some credence to this.)
Either way, this was a pretty safe report to file because, again, it’s basically inconceivable Mike Brown is bringing back Lewis no matter what Lewis wants.
There’s going to be a fan mutiny if he’s the coach next year.
While I defended Lewis for a long time — and still think he’s a good football coach and a fine man — everyone who is ready for something new is now certainly justified.
I guess the only question now is if Lewis falls into that group, but I also don’t think it really matters in the long run…
Moving on to teams whose season is not over: The Dayton Flyers have a big game tonight on the West Coast.
David Jablonski is on the scene and reports this St. Mary’s team is like most — good and heavily Australian.
» ROAD TRIP: Behind the scenes with the Flyers
The Flyers don’t have much to lose in this game.
They can pick ups a huge win but strengthened the schedule either way.
One thing to note for this 10 p.m. tipoff: Since the game is on Fox Sports Ohio, it could run into conflict with the broadcast of the Cleveland Cavaliers and Milwaukee Bucks.
UD sports information reports the game will be live on the FOX Sports Ohio alternate channel if the NBA game is still going at 10. The Dayton game will then carry over to the main channel in progress. It will also be shown on ROOT Sports Northwest and Spectrum Sports Net…
Do you want to see highlights of last year's Dayton vs. Saint Mary's game? Why not. Here they are. See all your old friends, and stay for the end https://t.co/od4Ri8Kyp0— David Jablonski (@DavidPJablonski) December 19, 2017
As Wright State works on trying to reach a new level under Scott Nagy, he’s an indicator he probably has an idea what he’s doing.
Guard Justin Mitchell agrees an early-season benching has set him on the right path to providing the performances the Raiders need.
“I think that was a big part (of the problem) with me — focusing on my stats. Me not getting my stats affected my attitude, and that went into me not playing. If I’m not scoring, that’s OK. I just want to win. When I look up at the scoreboard and see we’re winning, that’s a good feeling.”
Meanwhile, he should also benefit from the addition of Cole Gentry, the transfer point guard who became eligible over the weekend.
The Raiders play Missouri State tonight..
Lastly, did you see the news about the possible return of the XFL?
I don’t know if this is the answer, but the NFL needs a developmental league.
I’m pretty sure there could be a market for spring football, and I thought the XFL kind of got a raw deal.
It seemed like since ESPN didn’t have a piece of it, they weren’t interested in seeing it succeed (sort of like the NHL now).
Ratings took a steep decline as the league’s only season progressed, but I’m sure the relentless negative coverage didn’t help it get a foothold.
The media landscape has changed significantly over the last dozen years.
While ESPN is still dominant, it’s no longer a monopoly as far as sports content goes.
Something doesn’t have to do well on broadcast television (or be one an ESPN channel) to succeed anymore, so the XFL 2’s chances would seem to be much better than the original.
And another professional football league’s presence might tell us a lot about how badly Roger Goodell and the rest of the NFL’s leadership are hurting the game in the present.Follow @marcushartman
Published: Thursday, March 22, 2018 @ 1:59 PM
DAYTON — The University of Dayton basketball team has lost three more players, including 6-foot-10 redshirt freshmen Kostas Antetokounmpo, who has already withdrawn from school.
Junior point guard John Crosby and 6-foot-11 freshman Jordan Pierce also requested and were granted their release from the program so they could transfer elsewhere. The trio — whose departure was revealed Thursday afternoon by Coach Anthony Grant — follows the exit of two other players, Xeyrius Williams and Matej Svoboda, since the Flyers ended their 14-17 season two weeks ago after losing to VCU 77-72 in the second round of the Atlantic 10 Tournament in Washington D.C.
Antetokounmpo and Svoboda will pursue professional careers, according to a Dayton press release.
My view of that dunk by Kostas Antetokounmpo. pic.twitter.com/3nZTmJjDSn— David Jablonski (@DavidPJablonski) December 24, 2017
Last weekend 6-foot-9 Xeyrius Williams announced he was leaving the program and earlier this week 6-foot-7 freshman Matej Svoboda informed Grant he was electing to pursue a pro career back home in the Czech Republic.
“I tell guys this all the time when we are recruiting, ‘What we do is not for everybody,’” said Grant who took over the job vacated by Archie Miller last spring. “I tell them, ‘Here’s what we’re going to be about and here’s the way we’re going to do it.’ It doesn’t make you a bad person (to disagree.) It’s just we have to understand the commitment it takes, the sacrifice it takes to be able to accomplish the things we’re trying to accomplish ... without any guarantees.”
» RELATED: What the roster looks like now
Antetokounmpo, whose brother Giannis is an NBA star with the Milwaukee Bucks and last fall signed a $100 million contract, played in 29 games this season and had six starts. He averaged 5.2 points and 2.9 rebounds a game, but showed real promise near the end of the season. He scored a season high 14 points in the regular season finale against George Washington.
Crosby, who played in 26 games this past season with nine starts, had seen his playing time evaporate by year’s end as freshman Jalen Crutcher established himself as the starting point guard. Crosby, who played in 90 games during his UD career, had gotten his release after last season, too, but then returned to the team. Pierce played in just two games and did not score. Dayton now has five scholarships open for the 2018-19 season.
Published: Thursday, March 22, 2018 @ 12:12 PM
DAYTON — For the fourth time since 2015, the Atlantic 10 has lost one of its most successful coaches.
Connecticut announced the hiring of Dan Hurley on Thursday. He spent six seasons at Rhode Island, compiling a record of 113-82 and leading the program to the A-10 tournament crown in 2017 and the regular-season title in 2018. The Rams reached the NCAA tournament his last two seasons after missing the big dance in his first four seasons.
» RELATED: A look at Dayton’s 2018-19 roster
This wasn’t unexpected news. Dayton students teased Hurley about leaving for UConn when Rhode Island visited UD Arena in January. The Rams lose four senior starters from a team that finished 26-8.
Here’s a glance at the other recent high-profile coaching losses by the conference:
2015: Shaka Smart left Virginia Commonwealth for Texas after leading the Rams to the A-10 tournament title in his final season. He spent six seasons at VCU and finished with a 163-56 record, making the NCAA tournament his last five seasons.
» LOOKING BACK: Celebrating fourth anniversary of Dayton’s win over Ohio State
2017: Dayton’s Archie Miller took the head coaching job at Indiana after six seasons with the Flyers. Dayton shared the A-10 regular-season title in 2016 and won it outright in 2017. He was 139-63 in six seasons at UD and led the Flyers to the NCAA tournament in his last four seasons. Dayton finished 14-17 in the first season for Anthony Grant.
Published: Wednesday, March 21, 2018 @ 1:59 PM
Updated: Wednesday, March 21, 2018 @ 4:59 PM
— Springfield High School teammates RaHeim Moss and Leonard Taylor have been named to the All-Ohio Division I boys high school basketball teams.
The Division I and II teams were announced on Tuesday by the Ohio Prep Sportswriters Association. The Division III and IV teams were released on Monday.
»RELATED: Springfield coach, “we’ll be back”
Moss, a 6-foot-3 junior guard, was named to the second team. He led the Wildcats (21-5) in scoring at 16.2 points. Also a football standout at linebacker, he remains verbally uncommitted but continues to receive offers in both sports. The University of Cincinnati and Kentucky are among the programs to offer him in football.
Taylor, a 6-5 senior and three-year starter, averaged 12.9 points and led the Wildcats in rebounding (8.9). He signed to play football at UC.
Springfield handed Wayne its only regular-season loss. Both teams were knocked out of the playoffs in a D-I regional by Cincinnati Moeller.
Wayne senior Darius Quisenberry and Myles Belyeu, a senior at Trotwood-Madison, were first-team picks.
A 6-1 guard, Quisenberry averaged a team-high 18.5 points for Wayne (25-2). He played his final two seasons at Wayne after transferring from Tecumseh and has signed with Youngstown State.
»RELATED: Trotwood-Madison back to final four
»RELATED: Boys state final four pairings
Belyeu, a 6-4 guard, leads the Rams in scoring (25.2). A three-year starter, he has scored more than 1,500 career points. He will announce which team he’s signing with after this weekend’s D-II state final four in which the Rams will participate in for the second straight season.
Another junior, Samari Curtis of Xenia, was a D-I third-team pick. He was among the state’s leading scorers (30.4) and is verbally committed to Xavier.
»RELATED: Boys regional results
»RELATED: Girls state final four results
Landing on the D-II third team were Trotwood junior Amari Davis (21.2 points) and Meadowdale senior Jabali Leonard (23.0).
The players of the year were Dave Goodwin of Upper Arlington (D-I) and Pete Nance of Richfield Revere (D-II). Coaches of the year were Hilliard Bradley’s Brett Norris (D-I) and Chad Burt of Wauseon (D-II).
»RELATED: Moeller bumps Wayne off tourney trail
The Ohio Mr. Basketball is scheduled to be announced on Wednesday. Teams were chosen by statewide media panels and based on coaches’ nominations.
Published: Wednesday, March 21, 2018 @ 4:47 PM
— The NFL has announced new ways fans can watch the draft in April, including one that could be intriguing to college football fans in particular.
NFL Network and ESPN will continue broadcasting the annual talent distribution festival, and Fox is jumping in as well via a partnership with the league’s channel.
RELATED: Cincinnati Bengals draft order
For the first time ever, the entire draft will be available on broadcast television as Fox will simulcast the NFL Network’s coverage of rounds 1-3 on its broadcast channel and ABC will simulcast ESPN’s coverage of rounds 4-7.
Here’s the most exciting part for college football fans: Along with the traditional broadcast on ESPN, the College GameDay crew will provide a “college-themed viewing option of round one” on ESPN2.