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Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Monday (12/31) update (See the End of the Story on the Almost, Kind-of Ejected from the Game Andre Allen)

Monday (12/31) update
Posted by Dan Wolken

– After taking Sunday off, the Tigers had a short practice today. Coach John Calipari was all set to scrimmage for awhile, but after just two four-minute segments, he saw what he needed to see and called it a day. No need to spoil a good thing.

– Calipari left on a recruiting trip at the end of practice, but players stayed to do some individual work. That all ended when Willie Kemp did a 360-degree dunk, then ripped off his shirt and ran back to the locker room. When Willie does a 360, there’s no reason for anybody to stay on the court.

– Before practice, Calipari held an individual workout with Pierre Niles and was highly complimentary of his effort. Despite his ongoing weight issues, Niles does some impressive things. I think Calipari is going to try everything possible to get him into the rotation now, even if it’s just a 5, 6 minute cameo.

– Matt Simpkins, the 6-9, 215-pound power forward from The Patterson School, will be in Memphis on his official visit this weekend. Simpkins is ranked 47th overall in the class of 2008 by Simpkins has had some academic difficulties, and Patterson is his sixth school in five years. Simpkins is originally from Berkley, Calif., and several Pac-10 schools are recruiting him. My sense is that Memphis wants a commitment from either Simpkins or Wesley Witherspoon, whichever one they can get first. Getting both is probably not too realistic, since they are both in the 6-8, 6-9 range.

– As of now, point guard Andre Allen will be eligible to participate Thursday against Siena. Allen was thrown out of the game Saturday against Arizona for coming off the bench with 8:11 remaining when Chris Douglas-Roberts was fouled hard by Kirk Walters. Though Allen, by rule, probably should be subject to a one-game suspension for being ejected from the game, the officiating crew never recorded an ejection with the official scorekeeper. As it was happening, I heard the official near the Memphis bench tell Calipari that Allen had to go to the locker room for coming off the bench. But no technical foul was called, so I’m not sure it really was an official ejection. Therefore, I’m not sure how a penalty could be enforced.

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