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John Wall, once the nation's top recruit, on the NCAA basketball FBI allegations

John Wall, once the nation's top recruit, on the NCAA basketball FBI allegations

Some of the biggest names in NCAA basketball are currently dealing with a scandal that could ultimately have wide-reaching effects on the sport and it's most prominent programs and coaches.

Though those in the NBA are effectively removed from it all, most of the league's players were  once stars at the collegiate level, and many of them for the schools that were implicated.

Kentucky was not one of the schools implicated in the FBI investigation, but John Wall has an interesting perspective as the former No. 1 recruit in the nation.


"If you are the No. 1 guy or the top guy, you're going to have guys come at you. But you have to be smart about it. If you are only going to school for one year, there's no point in doing all the extra stuff. If you don't have any money and have been poor your whole life, another eight months won't hurt," Wall said.

"I was trusting no one. Listen, I grew up without a dad since the age of nine. It was my mom working three or four jobs to support our family. If she could provide from me then, then she could provide for me when I was 17 or 18 years old for a few months. You know what I mean? You couldn't do nothing for me then. I'd been poor my whole life. Eight months? What is that money going to do for me? I was fine with it."

Wall's teammate Bradley Beal was a top recruit before he chose the University of Florida. He too recalls people trying to lead him the wrong way.

"I was always by-the-book, even in my recruiting process. I had coaches who wanted to offer me stuff or offer my family stuff, but that wasn't what I was about and that wasn't what my family was about," Beal said. 

"At the end of the day, I went to a program where Coach [Billy Donovan] didn't guarantee my anything. He didn't guarantee I was going to start or that I was going to play. That was something that I respected. Coming out of college, I was actually about to go back to college. I decided to come out on the last deadline day. For me, it wasn't like that. It's crazy what today's generation is like. Kids are taking stuff in high school, taking things in college and stuff like that. For me, my story wasn't like that."

The FBI allegations center around coaches allegedly taking tens of thousands of dollars to set players up with financial advisors and agents. Schools like Arizona, Southern California, Oklahoma State, Louisville and Auburn have been implicated and others could be uncovered in the future. 



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Must-see moments from Wizards' crazy loss to the Clippers including the controversial finish

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Must-see moments from Wizards' crazy loss to the Clippers including the controversial finish

Here are the five best plays or moments from the Washington Wizards' 113-112 loss to the L.A. Clippers on Saturday afternoon...

1. Despite losing, the Wizards got off to a quick start in large part due to Otto Porter, who had 11 points in the first quarter and made his first three threes.

This was his third:

Porter finished with 27 points, his most since Oct. 27 against the Warriors.

2. Clippers center DeAndre Jordan (17 rebounds) had two funny moments back-to-back in the third quarter. The first involved a cameraman sitting on the baseline. The guy got decked on a play under the basket and Jordan helped him up:

Soon after that Jordan got tangled up with Tim Frazier. It was a funny juxtoposition between the smallest guy on the Wizards and the biggest guy on the Clippers:


3. This play combined Porter and Jordan. Porter hit a rainbow teardrop over Jordan:

4. This was the Wizards' best play of the game and at the time it looked like it would help them win. Bradley Beal (25 points) put in an and-1 layup with 12 seconds to go:

5. This play also involved Beal, but it didn't work out for the Wizards. With 1.2 seconds left, Beal attempted a game-winning shot but the clock started running early, negating his made jumper. The Wizards had to redo the play and couldn't convert:

After the game, Beal shared what he heard from the referees as an explanation for the obvious mistake byhe clock operator:


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Wizards, refs explain what happened on botched final play in loss to Clippers

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Wizards, refs explain what happened on botched final play in loss to Clippers

In the final moments of Saturday's Wizards loss to the Clippers at Staples Center, things got a little weird.

There were 1.2 seconds on the clock and the Wizards got the ball into Bradley Beal's hands, exactly what they wanted. But the clock started early, about .2 seconds early, and Beal wasn't able to get his shot off in time. Though the shot went in, the buzzer had already gone off. 

Once the refs realized what happened, they reveiwed the play and gave the Wizards another chance. But this time it was with 1.1 seconds and the Wizards were inbounding the ball closer to the baseline.

After getting Beal open enough to catch the ball and get a shot off, the do-over was a disaster. Center Marcin Gortat got the ball and had no choice but to attempt a fading shot from about 21 feet out. With Beal, Otto Porter and other shooters on the floor, that wasn't even close to the plan.

Following the game, the Wizards' 10th straight loss to the Clippers at Staples Center, Beal and referee Bill Spooner gave their explanation for what happened on the first attempt. First, Beal shared his side.

"Excuse my language because I’m going to say verbatim what they said," Beal said. "They said it’s kind of a 'some s*** rule,' it’s a freak rule. To me, it didn’t really make sense because you take a basket away. You go back and he says we get the same amount of time, but we didn’t get the same amount of time and then we get the ball in the corner. It’s kind of the tough s*** rule. I don’t understand it. I don’t get it. We ran a great play and now that you take that away, we’ve gotta set up with a different play and they get a chance to set up and change some things. Now we’ve gotta do a different play with the ball in the corner."


Basically, the clock operator screwed up and the Wizards were hurt by it. Here's what Spooner told pool reporter Todd Dybas of the Washington Times:

"We had a clock malfunction, early start," Spooner said, confirming what everyone saw on the NBC Sports Washington broadcast. "The crew actually incorrectly reset the shot-clock to 1.1, we should have reset it to 0.1. The reason is, on an early start, we timed the possession, the lost time. The only time that was lost was 0.1. So we should have inbounded the ball at the point of interruption, which is what we did, but it should have been at 0.1 instead of 1.1."

On why the location of the inbounds changed:

"We had a clock malfunction, early start."

So, by that explanation, the Wizards were done a favor with 1.1 on the clock instead of 0.1. That doesn't make much sense, but those are the NBA rules.

Here is the play, if Wizards fans have the stomach to revisit it:

The Clippers basically benefitted from a fluke incident, a mistake by the clock operator, and there nothing the refs could really do about it. The Wizards may feel like what happened was unfair, but they know they could have won the game in other ways.

"I never complain about tough decisions and tough plays at the end of the game that the refs have to make," head coach Scott Brooks said. "They had nothing to do with guys not being ready to play."