Mark Aguirre, Doug Collins to be inducted into College Hoops HOF


Mark Aguirre, Doug Collins to be inducted into College Hoops HOF

Even if Illinois didn't have a team in the NCAA Tournament, it's still a banner year for collegiate basketball in the state.

Illinois State legend Doug Collins and former DePaul star Mark Aguirre will be inducted into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame in 2016.

The two are part of a group of eight inductees that will be recognized during the NCAA Final Four April 2 with the actual ceremony coming Nov. 18 in Kansas City.

ISU named its basketball court at Redbird Arena after Collins, who averaged 29.1 points per game in three seasons with Illinois State. He was the No. 1 overall pick in the 1973 NBA Draft (Philadelphia 76ers) after being named a first-team All-American his final year in college.

Collins also played for Team USA in the 1972 Olympics and had a solid career as an NBA player, coach and analyst. He coached the Bulls from 1986-89.

[RELATED - DePaul women make Sweet 16 after beating Louisville]

Aguirre was a two-time All-American and averaged 24 points per game as a Freshman while leading DePaul to the Final Four. He was the Naismith Player of the Year in 1980 and went on to become the No. 1 overall pick in the 1981 NBA Draft (Dallas Mavericks).

Aguirre won two NBA titles with the Detroit Pistons and DePaul retired his No. 24 jersey.

In addition to Collins and Aguirre, the Class of 2016 also includes former Bulls player (1966-69) Bob Boozer (Kansas State), Lionel Simmons (La Salle), Jamaal Wilkes (UCLA), Dominque Wilkins (Georgia) as well as coaches Hugh Durham (Florida State, Georgia, Jacksonville University) and Mike Montgomery (Stanford, California).

NCAA is taking steps to allow student-athletes to make money off their likeness


NCAA is taking steps to allow student-athletes to make money off their likeness

Bulls rookie guard Coby White has talent, an infectious smile and an afro that makes him stand out on the court. It’s a fair bet he could have made some money off his likeness while he played at North Carolina if the rules allowed it.

The NCAA is taking steps towards allowing its athletes to do so, but there’s still a long way to go in the process. The organization’s Board of Governors unanimously voted to start the process. That vote moves things to the NCAA’s three divisions “to consider updates to relevant bylaws and policies,” as it was worded in the NCAA's press release.

“We must embrace change to provide the best possible experience for college athletes,” said Michael V. Drake, the chair of the board and president of Ohio State. “Additional flexibility in this area can and must continue to support college sports as a part of higher education. This modernization for the future is a natural extension of the numerous steps NCAA members have taken in recent years to improve support for student-athletes, including full cost of attendance and guaranteed scholarships.”

The board asked each division (Division I, Division II, Division III) to make any new rules immediately and no later than January 2021.

It’s important to note that none of the changes are final, or even imminent. It’s still relevant that the NCAA is going through the process at all, after being so strongly in favor of amateurism across the board for its student-athletes.

The potential changes would not allow for compensation based on performance or participation in a sport. Of course, the natural grey area is that higher performing athletes will be more marketable so they would be compensated on performance indirectly.

This comes after California passed legislation to allow college athletes to receive endorsement/sponsorship money and other states are pursuing similar.

This is still far from being official or finalized, but it will continue to be a major story in college sports over the next couple years.

Dave Leitao suspended 3 games, DePaul put on 3-year probation


Dave Leitao suspended 3 games, DePaul put on 3-year probation

The DePaul men's basketball team has been placed on three-year probation and head coach Dave Leitao has been suspended three games for the 2019-20 season, the NCAA announced on Tuesday.

The program was found guilty of "failing to promote an atmosphere of compliance while Leitao did not "prevent violations from occurring in his program."

A Division I Committee on Infractions panel concluded that a "former DePaul associate head coach violated NCAA ethical conduct rules when he knowingly directed the former assistant director of basketball operations to provide impermissible recruiting benefits to a recruit."

The NCAA found that three coaches knew about the situation but failed to report the infractions. DePaul will vacate all wins earned while the ineligible player competed and suffer recruiting restrictions. They were also fined $5,000 plus 1% of the men's basketball program budget.

In 2019, DePaul had their first winning season since 2007 by going 19-17.