drops in zone pass coverage and Brinkley 2014-12-01T02:57:05+00:00

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      You dont know them. Not many people do. Days… Weeks… Months… Almost a year has gone by and still… you dont know them. The legendary Robert Montgomery Knight, aka, The General, one of the winningest coaches in college basketball history, strolls in to inspect the troops. He came to see them, to share his wisdom before they march into madness… to see who exactly this rag-tag bunch of players, not blue bloods… scrappers… fighters… winners, were. Coach Knight, the leader of the last college team to go undefeated and win an NCAA title, the 1976 Indiana Hoosiers, shows up at practice in late February to tell them to take it “one game at a time”. He is a fan of how they play. “Play Angry”. The 2013-2014 Wichita State mens basketball team does just that. But more importantly, plays hard, plays tough and plays together, leading to an NCAA-record 30-0 regular season mark under head coach Gregg Marshall. Saturday, March 1, 2014: Charles Koch Arena, Wichita, Kansas: Senior Night. The final matchup before the conference tourney and the opponent Missouri State is no easy out for the Shockers. This is also the final home game for two Canadian senior forwards, Chadrack Lufile, as well as his best friend, a young man whose last name is famous, not only in the state of Kansas, but on a couple continents, Nick Wiggins. Nick has a younger brother, Andrew who you may know, playing in the same state only two and half hours away, for a program so steeped in tradition, the inventor of basketball was the first head coach of the Kansas Jayhawks, fellow Canuck James Naismith. I got on the phone with Nick Wiggins and Chadrack Lufile post-practice this week to talk life in the shadows and possibly shocking the world. Did you guys know one another before signing at Wichita State? NW: Weve known one another since we were teenagers. CL: We actually went to the same junior college together at Vincennes in Indiana. NW: I signed first. I didnt force him to sign or anything… just told him it would be special for us to go together. Why Wichita State? CL: Nick had narrowed his choices down to Baylor and Wichita State. He talked about his visit, how they treated him, the ambitions of the coaches and players. There was just a feeling; a good feeling about it all. Once Nick decided, I was in, too. We had to take advantage of what looked like a great opportunity in front of us. NW: When we first got here, first couple years, we didnt play as much as wed have liked to but it was always about team. Still, it was tough at times, knowing you could help the team on the court more. CL: My Dads a minister. He has a huge influence on all that I do. Once, wed lost three straight, neither one of us was playing a lot and my Dad prayed for us. Not just us, but the team. I remember telling Nick about it. NW: Yeah, I mean we had 7-8 guys on this team last year who could score 20 in any game, but we share the ball. Thats how play. CL: And then we ended up in the Final Four. We believed… If you had to compare your game to any Wichita State great from the past, who would it be and why? NW: So many great players who have come through here. Id say Cleo Littleton. He was known for his defence and for being a great teammate. I think thats me. CL: X! Xavier McDaniel. He and Antoine Carr, another Shockers legend, came in to to see us last year and really instilled in us to “Play Angry”. Thats our thing now: Play Angry. He (McDaniel) told me to box out hard, never let anyone get to the ball before I did, rebound strong, run the floor harder than my opponent, be versatile with my game. We emulate the guys who were here before us. They are Shockers for life! What do you say to the pundits who believe 30-0 is a function of you guys playing in the Missouri Valley Conference, the perceived lack in your strength of schedule and not because youre a great team? NW: Schedule us. Everyone talks KU (Kansas), but they wouldnt play us. We wanted to do it at a neutral site, but they didnt want it. Thats ok, people who dont believe mid-majors can compete with major D-1 schools havent really watched us play. They will find out soon enough. CL: Say what you want about our conference or the teams we beat. Just come play us. We feel like we can compete with anyone. We beat the #1 team in the country in Gonzaga in the tournament last year. Ohio State was #7, Pitt #20. Just play us. Do you think you should be ranked #1 in the country? CL: Honestly, I think we should be! NW: We dont really pay it much attention. It could be almost like a distraction. We dont look past anyone. You still gotta win. The team we play our last home game against, Missouri State, is tough. They had us down by like 17 with about 11 minutes to go in the game before we fought back and won. It was a war. Im sure they wont care that its Senior Night for us when we play them again. They wanna win, too! If Wichita State runs the table by winning your conference tourney, should you be a #1 seed for March Madness? NW: We proved all year we should be a #1 seed. I think the selection committee will do the right thing and give us that. We lost some great guys from last years team and still havent skipped a beat or lost a step. Coach Marshall has us prepared. This will be a special ride to go on with this group of guys. Dream Scenario: Clearly winning it all is the ultimate dream. But, if Wichita State had a chance to play Kansas in the final on April 7 in Dallas, why would it be that much sweeter? CL: Lets Go!!! Do you know how hype that would be?!? NW: If they seed us and Kansas in the same region 1-2, wow, the rivalry… My brother. I believe itll happen. State bragging rights. Man, I would have lifetime bragging rights in my house (laughs)!!! CL: Andrew (Wiggins) would come down to chill and hang with us. Id tell him “Youre not ready for us, Bro (laughs)!” Im no genius or anything, but I believe all of this. All the things that are happening with Wichita State are meant to be. I feel like well meet Kansas, God Willing. And God Is Good… Levine Toilolo Black Jersey. — The Buffalo Sabres got the lead for a change, and held onto it thanks to a stellar performance in goal by Jhonas Enroth. Corey Peters Red Jersey. Even the longest of tenures with the Twins, though, dont last forever. Versatile veteran Michael Cuddyer, voted by local beat writers as the teams most valuable player in 2011, is gone. He will be with the Colorado Rockies next season. http://www.authenticfalconsofficial.com/authentic-deion-sanders-kids-jersey.html. The story of the scoreless first period was Hurricanes goaltender Cam Ward, as the Jets outshot the Hurricanes 13-6 and had a number of grade “A” scoring chances, the best off the stick of Bryan Little. Roddy White Red Jersey.Com Tour. The former Canadian Amateur champion, who made his rookie year as a professional a memorable one, has had a long wait to get back on the course and after last season, hes anxious to play. Brett Favre Red Jersey. The All-Star point guard, sidelined for the past six months with a knee injury, was set to return to the Oklahoma City Thunder lineup for Sunday nights home game against the Phoenix Suns, weeks earlier than expected.MINNEAPOLIS — The Minnesota Vikings have taken another one of their priority free agents off the market before it opens, agreeing to terms on a five-year contract with defensive end Everson Griffen that features $20 million guaranteed and a maximum value of $42.5 million. A person with direct knowledge of the deal confirmed the details to The Associated Press on Sunday, speaking on condition of anonymity because the Vikings havent announced the deal. The NFL free-agent signing period starts Tuesday. The Vikings also agreed to terms on a one-year contract with middle linebacker Jasper Brinkley, according to another person with direct knowledge of that deal who spoke to the AP on Sunday on condition of anonymity because the Vikings havent confirmed the agreement. Brinkley played for the Arizona Cardinals last season. Two days ago, the Vikings reached a two-year deal with quarterback Matt Cassel worth as much as $10 million. The 26-year-old Griffen, a fourth-round draft pick from USC in 2010, has an opening to become a full-time player with the departure of four-time All-Pro Jared Allen, who will officially become a free agent on Tuesday and wont be re-signed. Allen and Brian Robison have been the starting defensive ends for almost Griffens entire NFL career, though he has seen extensive action as a situational pass rusher and on special teams. Griffen is getting paid more for his potential at a critical position in this pass-driven league than for actual production. He had 5 1/2 sacks last season, down from eight in 2012. But he has the speed and athleticism to become a force if he can continue to develop, after making major strides in maturity in overcoming some off-the-field struggles including the sudden death of his mother in 2012. Brinkley rebounded from a serious knee injury in 2007 at South Carolina to be drafted in the fifth rouund by the Vikings in 2009.dddddddddddd After missing the entire 2011 season following major hip surgery, Brinkley bounced back again to become a first-time NFL starter in 2012. He hit free agency the next year and signed with the Cardinals. Brinkley played in 15 games last season and started when Pro Bowl pick Darryl Washington served a suspension for violating the NFLs substance abuse policy, but the Cardinals cut him last month to create more space under their salary cap. So hes used to playing under this type of prove-it circumstance. “They let me know the jobs wide open and its not going to be handed to anybody,” Brinkley said. “Everybody has an equal opportunity to earn that spot.” As the depth chart currently stands, prior to the actual opening of the free agent market and of course the draft, Brinkley will be in competition with Audie Cole for the starting middle linebacker spot. In the “Tampa Two” defence the Vikings used to use, linebackers had deep drops in zone pass coverage and Brinkley was sometimes exploited. Brinkleys skill set ought to better fit the scheme under new coach Mike Zimmer. “Minnesota has always been home for me. It has a significant place in my heart. I was raised on the frozen tundra,” Brinkley said in a phone interview with the AP, foreshadowing the wintry conditions the Vikings could experience late this year at the University of Minnesotas outdoor stadium while their replacement for the Metrodome is under construction. From former Cincinnati cornerback Johnathan Joseph, a fellow South Carolina alumnus, Brinkley received a favourable report of Zimmer, who was Josephs defensive co-ordinator with the Bengals. “Hes a defensive guy. Hes a straight shooter. Hes going to tell you how it is. He does magical things with his defensive guys,” Brinkley said. ‘ ‘ ‘

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