1. Kansas City - LT - Eric Fisher, Central Michigan
2. Jacksonville - DE - Dion Jordan, Oregon
3. Oakland - DT - Shariff Floyd, Florida
4. Philadelphia - LT - Luke Joekel, Texas A&M
5. Detroit - LT - Lane Johnson, Oklahoma
6. Cleveland - DE - Ziggy Ansah, BYU
7. Arizona - OG - Chance Warmack, Alabama
8. Buffalo - QB - Geno Smith, West Virginia
9. NY Jets - WR - Tavon Austin, West Virginia
10. Tennessee - OG - Jonathan Cooper, North Carolina
11. San Diego - LT - D.J. Fluker, Alabama
12. Miami - S - Kenny Vaccaro, Texas
13. NY Jets - TE - Tyler Eifert, Notre Dame
14. Carolina - CB - Dee Milliner, Alabama
15. New Orleans - DE - Barkevious Mingo, LSU
16. St. Louis - WR - Cordarrelle Patterson, Tennessee
17. Pittsburgh - LB - Jarvis Jones, Goergia
18. Dallas - FS - Eric Reid, LSU
19. NY Giants - LB - Alec Ogletree, Georgia
20. Chicago - LB - Arthur Brown, Kansas State
21. Cincinatti - OT - Justin Pugh, Syracuse
22. St. Louis - LB - Manti Te'o, Notre Dame
23. Minnesota - CB - Xavier Rhodes, Florida State
24. Indianapolis - CB - D.J. Hayden, Houston
25. Minnesota - DT - Sheldon Richardson, Missouri
26. Green Bay - DT - Star Lotolelei, Utah
27. Houston - WR - Robert Woods, USC
28. Denver - DT - Sylvester Williams, North Carolina
29. New England - DB - Johnthan Banks, Mississippi State
30. Atlanta - RB - Eddie Lacy, Alabama
31. San Francisco - S - Matt Elam, Florida
32. Baltimore - S - Jonathan Cyprien, Florida International
Tubby Smith was fired today. I like the move IF Minnesota brings in a big-name coach that can develop a great relationship with local 2014 recruits Tyus Jones, Rashad Vaughn and Reid Travis.
The three are desired by pretty much every school in the country. We all know about Jones, but Vaughn and Travis will be high level college players, too. Travis reminds me of Trevor Mbakwe. He's a beast down low and he's getting better every day. Vaughn is a total stud that might eventually be good enough to go to the NBA as a shooting guard that can dribble, shoot and fly.
There's no question Shaka Smart, Flip Saunders, Fred Hoiberg or Ben Howland could gaze into these recruits' eyes and lure them to Minnesota, but if it's anything less than an accomplished, big-name coach the Gophers will swing and miss and fail miserably.
Go big or go home has never been more true.
Shaka would be the biggest get, but I have a hard time believing a guy who could go anywhere would come to Minnesota. Sure, the summer's are nice but they're a heck of lot nicer on UCLA's campus. If he does leave VCU for Minnesota, it will be a pit stop at best.
Hoiberg would be outstanding. If Chris Babb doesn't get hurt 15 minutes into Sunday's game against Ohio State, Hoiberg is still coaching in the Sweet 16. He's a hot commodity but unless the NBA comes calling he won't uproot his home in Ames, Iowa.
Flip, in my opinion won't be the guy. I think he really enjoys his gig in the media too much.
Howland won't be the guy. If he is I'll be shocked. Why bring in a guy that watched 12 players leave UCLA under his watch. That's far more than Tubby saw leave Minnesota. Bringing back a guy with the same issue would be dumb.
Justin Gaard wants Jay Wright. The Villanova coach has won with less talented teams in the Big East. I love the idea. He would be able to come in an immediately develop a relationship with the star recruits -- maybe not to the level that Shaka, Flip or Hoiberg could -- but he's capable of landing big recruits.
Kevin Love scored seven points in last night's 87-84 loss to Houston -- his third sub-10-point performance of December. While I understand that his healing broken hand might have something to do with his awful shooting (3-14 last night), I can't understand the lack of emotion he's playing with.
James Harden is a max-player, and he showed the world why right in Love's face as he drove past Love three times in the final five minutes of the game and scored easy layups. The effort provided by Love as the help-defender on each layup was basically worthless. Arvydas Sabonis, 48 and retired, would have looked more capable than Love.
Harden scored 17 points on 6-9 shooting in the fourth quarter. Love didn't scored in the fourth quarter. Love didn't scored in the third quarter. And he didn't score in the first quarter. Max-player?
What's worse is that Love and the Wolves didn't play a game Tuesday night. The Rockets did. Houston played like they were tired for the first 30 minutes of the game, but found a way to turn "it" on over the final 18 minutes. The Wolves, at home, in front of the third largest crowd in Target Center history, played without energy all night long.
Love's game and passion does not resemble that of last season. He's the leader of the team, and if he doesn't start playing like it the Wolves will be in trouble. This isn't the Eastern Conference, where 40 or fewer wins can get you into the playoffs.
It's going to take, in my opinion, a minimum of 44-46 wins to reach the postseason in the ultra-tough Western Conference, and blowing 14-point second half leads at home to teams you're racing against isn't the formula to getting in.