Saturday, April 25, 2009

More Memphis Players On The Move

At the rate things are going, you have to wonder whether Memphis will even have five players to put on the floor next season. The latest to go is Darnell Dodson, a Juco player who this week signed with Kentucky. The move makes Kentucky even deeper next season. If Jodie Meeks and Patrick Patterson can be enticed by the possibility of a Final Four, that might just be what they'll have. I already had them as my favorites to take the SEC, and a 2 seed in the Tournament. Picking up another quality bench player isn't going to change that.

But getting back to Memphis, the roster is going to be even more depleted than I thought it would be a few weeks ago. Shawn Taggert has entered the NBA Draft process for now. He has not signed with an agent, but even if he comes back for another season it most likely will not be with Memphis. It also appears that Roburt Sallie and Wesley Witherspoon are going to head to Kentucky, although that's not certain. It's extremely unlikely that either player will return to Memphis for another season, though. So who does that leave Memphis with?

Well, it does seem that Doneal Mack and Willie Kemp are going to stay, simply because they're going to be Seniors and it's not worth sitting out a season as a transfer just so you can play one more year somewhere else. Pierre Henderson-Niles will also likely stay, although he probably wouldn't have been good enough to earn playing time at Kentucky anyway. The reports are that Juco recruit Will Coleman is staying as well. But Coleman is the only player left from that recruiting class. The only other players from this past year's Memphis roster who might possibly be back are Freshmen: Angel Garcia, Matt Simpkins and Preston Laird. There are rumors about Garcia leaving, but Simpkins seems to be staying for now. As far as I can tell, Laird is a walk-on, but I've never seen him play and don't know anything about him.

So that leaves Memphis with five likely scholarship players: Kemp, Mack, Henderson-Niles, Coleman and Simpkins. Garcia is a possibility. Other than that, how do they even fill the rest of the roster? At this point, it's unclear. Maybe they'll find some lesser Juco kids. There are a couple of lesser High School prospects who haven't signed anywhere, and so Memphis might look into those kids also. But reasonably, this is going to be a very, very thin team next year.

In other words, don't be too surprised to see a school like Tulsa win the Conference USA and for Memphis to be NIT bound - or worse.


Anonymous said...

huh??...nice fiction

by the way it's Taggart not Taggert.

Anonymous said...

on the Memphis thing. you have almost zero facts straight in that entry. go do some research you hack.

Bluesdude said...

Son - Fat, Drunk and Stupid Is No Way To Go Through Life.......

Anonymous said...

It's even worse than you think. Kemp said that if he can't play the 3 he won't play, Mack said if Kemp doesn't play he's not either and Henderson-Niles had been told he may have to play some backup point guard. There is talk of simply forfeiting next season and starting over in 2010.

Anonymous said...

Ok, I guess they let anyone come on here and state things other than facts. Witherspoon and Sallie have already stated they are back. Taggart will return after NBA camp. This team returning next year is currently 8 deep with more additions on the way. That will be good enough to not only win C-USA but also they will most likely end up with a 4-5 seed in the 2010 Tournament.

Jeff said...

For all of the new people flowing over in anger from message boards, you have to learn the way things are done here.

If you want to disagree, disagree constructively. Offer facts and evidence. Provide links and citations. For example, I don't know anybody who thinks that Taggart is coming back to Memphis, so if you have any evidence for this then provide it.

Keep the ignorant personal attacks and hate on your own message board. I reserve the right to delete any and all personal attacks here.

Anonymous said...

You can get it straight from the horses mouth. Taggart has already said he will be back if he doesn't receive positive feedback, similar to Dozier and Anderson last yr. Here's a link to his facebook page.

Anonymous said...


A majority actually think he'll be back. What have you been reading to say otherwise? If you look at the nba draft boards you will see him no where on rounds 1-2. If he doesn't come back he will be making a mistake just like Darius.

Jeff said...

Thanks for posting a link to a source. I appreciate comments that aren't "Ur an idoit!"

I do have to say that I haven't kept track of Taggart's facebook status updates, and so maybe he will come back. I don't have any links at my disposal because I don't bookmark everywhere I go. It was simply the impression that I got from going on a few websites that Taggart would not be back.

Remember, the fact that a player probably won't be drafted doesn't necessarily mean they won't go pro. Most expect Eric Devendorf to stay in the Draft, even though I haven't seen anybody anywhere projecting him to get drafted. Devendorf seems prepared to go to Europe. Maybe Taggart feels the same way. And, of course, Taggart could still transfer, facebook status be damned. My understanding is that Taggart will graduate this semester, and so he can transfer without sitting out a season. Is my understanding correct?

I always keep up on this stuff as best I can, and I'll update my predictions on Memphis when their roster becomes hardened. If they do somehow have Taggart, Witherspoon, Mack, Kemp, Sallie, Henderson-Niles, Coleman, Garcia and Simpkins, then Memphis will remain the favorite to take the C-USA. I have them projected right now to win the conference, but to only be a 12 seed. If they do bring back every single one of those players then I might move them up to a 10 or an 11. A 4 seed is preposterous, though.

If you have any more information (with links) on the other Memphis players, please pass them along. The reason I allow comments is because I want to learn more about college basketball. Diehard Memphis fans are going to know more about Memphis basketball than I will. So educate me and send me links.


Bas-O-Matic said...

Wow. You're basically like a real life sports commentary version of Stephen Colbert, huh? If it feeels true in your gut, then it must be so.

Taggart (not Taggert) will not be drafted. He may choose to play overseas, but all indications are that if he doesn't get drafted (which he won't) then he's going to come back to college.

Now here's the logic of Tags' situation. He has one year of eligibility left. He's already sat out a year due to injury, and he's already 24 years old. based on that, the likelihood of him transferring were he to come back is pretty darn small. But don't take it from me, take it from Dan Wolken the Tiger's beat writer, someone who's much more likely to have a bead on who's staying or going than some anonymous guy mouthing off on the internet: "[J]unior Shawn Taggart is expected to be back next season"

Roburt Sallie, like Taggart, has already sat out a year and he's also an older player at 23 years old. The logic of him leaving is pretty much the same as Taggart's, only he's even less of a professional prospect as of right now. Again, aside from the logic of the situation, Wolken, in the same article linked above, confirms that Sallie will be with the team next year.

What about Witherspoon? He's young, talented. Won't he follow Calipari to Kentucky? Not according to him: "'We all signed to play at Memphis, and that’s what we’re going to do,' Witherspoon said."

Now let's compare your analysis:

"Well, it does seem that Doneal Mack and Willie Kemp are going to stay, simply because they're going to be Seniors and it's not worth sitting out a season as a transfer just so you can play one more year somewhere else. Pierre Henderson-Niles will also likely stay, although he probably wouldn't have been good enough to earn playing time at Kentucky anyway. The reports are that Juco recruit Will Coleman is staying as well. But Coleman is the only player left from that recruiting class. The only other players from this past year's Memphis roster who might possibly be back are Freshmen: Angel Garcia, Matt Simpkins and Preston Laird. There are rumors about Garcia leaving, but Simpkins seems to be staying for now. As far as I can tell, Laird is a walk-on, but I've never seen him play and don't know anything about him."To Wolken who, unlike you, knows what he's talking about:

"As things stand, freshman Tyreke Evans is expected to remain in the NBA Draft and junior Shawn Taggart is expected to be back next season. If it plays out that way, Memphis should have enough depth in the frontcourt with Coleman playing the center position and Taggart moving over to power forward. Pastner expects 6-10 freshman Angel Garcia to be academically eligible, and the Tigers also have rising senior Pierre Henderson-Niles coming back. Pastner is also keeping the door open for 6-9 freshman Matt Simpkins, who was suspended from the team in February, to return.

If the Tigers didn’t sign another player, the rest of the line lineup would feature Willie Kemp at point guard, a tandem of Roburt Sallie and Doneal Mack at shooting guard and Wesley Witherspoon at small forward.

Thus, the clear positions of need right now are at the point and on the wing where Memphis simply has no depth."
Of Taggart, Sallie, Simpkins, Garcia, and Witherspoon, the least likely to be on the roster next year, contrary to your ill informed opinion, is Simpkins. He was basically kicked off the team last year for discipline issues, even if he hasn't been formally dismissed from the team. If Pastner brings him back, I'm sure it will be with the understanding that Simpkins is on a very short leash.

Even if that's all that we bring back, Memphis should still be favored to win CUSA next year and should have a fairly decent shot at being ranked at some point in the season. They probably won't make the Sweet Sixteen or get a 4 or 5 seed, though.

However, that probably won't be the entiriety of our team next year. We'll probably add at least one more player. Again, Wolken:

"Pastner and Cyprien have been recruiting point guard Eric Bledsoe, an elite talent from Birmingham who would instantly solve a lot of problems. Bledsoe, however, is being targeted by every program that needs a point guard, including Kentucky, Florida and Cincinnati and there are questions about whether he will even qualify academically.

If Bledsoe doesn’t work out, Pastner will have to find a point guard somewhere — either a late-bloomer hidden in a prep school or from the junior college ranks. Miami-Dade point guard James Beatty and Chipola Junior College point guard Malcolm Armstead could both be in the mix.
Pastner is a strong contender to land 6-7 forward Latavious Williams, who is ranked No. 17 by but also comes with question marks about his eligibility. Pastner has also tried to get in the mix for guard Lance Stephenson, a consensus top-10 player who seemed to be headed for Kansas until Henry committed there. Stephenson will now have to re-consider his options, which include St. John’s and Maryland, but he might be open to overtures from the Tigers’ staff.

Another strong possibility for Pastner is bringing Chipola coach Greg Heiar on his staff as the director of basketball operations. Heiar has spoken with Pastner about the position, and if he came to Memphis, two or three of his players may follow. The top targets off that team include 6-7 forward Justin Brownlee (ranked No. 4 by JucoJunction) and 6-6 guard Torye Pelham.
If Williams comes and we bring in even a halfway decent point guard, there's no reason why Memphis could not make the Sweet Sixteen next year.

Xavier Henry and Demarcus Cousins were gone the second Cal left. It was possible but unlikely that Nolan Dennis would stay (that said, frankly, choosing Baylor was a pretty odd move). The Juco transfers were really the only realistic possibilities for Pastner to keep. Coleman is staying. Dodson is going to Kentucky.

All in all, the Memphis off season's gone about as well as could be expected.

In short, if you are going to pass yourself off as a blog where people go to get reliable information, you might want to do some very basic research before pushing publish, like confirming whether or not what's in your post is true, rather than trying to pass your unsourced assertions off as fact.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jeff said...

"Anonymous" had a post removed because he decided to just flame rather than offer anything substantive. I warned you Memphis diehards: I will delete any comments that are pure personal attacks. Maybe that's how people converse on the Memphis message boards, but it won't fly here.

Jeff said...

"Bas-o-matic", I chose to let your post stay because you did actually provide two sources (one of your links was dead). Cool it with the personal attacks and ignorant hatred, and you can continue posting here. But I won't hesitate to start deleting your posts if you don't shape up.

Now, let me go through this point by point: First of all, your argument on Taggart is not fact, but rumor. The Memphis beat writer might believe Taggart is coming back, but that doesn't make it so. Remember, Taggart has to decide before the NBA Draft whether to stay in or come back - if he stays in then he can't come back, even if he isn't drafted. The fact that he only has one year left is why I think Mack and Kemp are staying, but those guys would have to sit out a year. It's dumb to sit out a year to play only one year after that. Since Taggart can apparently transfer without sitting out, there is still a high probability that he will transfer even if he comes out of the Draft.

As for Witherspoon and the others: again, this is speculation. Nothing is confirmed. Memphis fans want to hang on some comment about "I'm a Memphis kid! I want to stay!" But if you go other fans, they'll be a bit cynical about this. Of course they're saying the right things now, because they don't want to burn bridges if they do come back to Memphis. But I'll believe it when I see it. And as I said, even if all of those guys come back, they're still not likely to be any higher than a 10-12 seed.

And as for future recruits, again, this is speculation. If and when they sign somebody else, I'll definitely keep it in mind when updating their Tournament projection. But there are no more stud recruits left (unless Memphis finds a way to get in the John Wall or Lance Stephenson sweepstakes, which nobody seriously thinks they will). So they have a good chance of signing some mid-level Juco kid, as I suggested in this post, but nobody is going to come in and star as a Freshman.

But things can change. When we have facts, and not just speculation by a bunch of crazed, delirious homers (I've had plenty of fans of plenty of teams get mad at me over the years, but this flurry out of you Memphis fans is probably the worst group attack I've ever had) is not going to sway me. Show me facts and links - not ignorant hatred.

fishman6581 said...

If you could read, you would see that Shawn Taggart CLEARLY SAID IT HIMSELF ON HIS FACEBOOK that he will be back. He isnt going to transfer. Sure he can, but I can drink if Im 21 doesnt mean Im going to. Everyone thats expected to be back is going to be back. Wesley wont leave, he said it himself at the press conference introducing Josh Pastner. Roburt and Doneal are returning because they can flourish in this system and showed it in the NCAAs. Will Coleman is coming in, and mark my words so is Latavious Williams. Expect a couple more JUCO players when the Tigers sign Chipola CC coach Greg Heiar. To say they will win their conference and receive a 10 seed at best is pretty low. Lets say they win 14 games in a 16 game conference schedule, then win 3 in the conference tourny, add to that 8 games out of conference and that is a 25 win team. Doesnt matter who you play unless all their RPI is outside of 300 there is no way they receive a 10 seed at best. Eric Bledsoe comes with Latavious Williams and all of a sudden they are a top 15 team in the preseason. If you disagree with that then...youve got issues.

NJ1 said...

I'm curious about one thing--

You provide no citations or credible sources to back up your speculation and hearsay.

And yet, when others dispute your (frankly, outlandish and baseless) claims, you demand that they cite sources to prove you wrong?

Rumor is as rumor does. At least with the opposing viewpoint there is strength in numbers.

What do you believe qualifies your speculation as superior to others who are closer to the program and actually have day-to-day contact with current roster players and coaches?

I have seen nothing--nothing!--to suggest that Sallie nor Witherspoon are even considering transferring. To suggest that this is a "high probability" is not going to fly with me unless I see at least one--preferably two--reliable sources close to the situation.

Jeff said...

NJ1, I treat Memphis the exact same way as I treat every other team, which is that I will not move them up in the BP65 for a recruit until that recruit has signed a letter of intent or made a verbal commitment. You guys are certainly chasing a bunch of recruits, as I figured you would, and when/if you sign some I will take them into account. But until then I will not. I'm not going to say "Memphis will have [some player]... I have no link or evidence, but some random guy who posted a comment on my blog swore that it would happen." That would be ludicrous.

As for Witherspoon and Sallie, in case you read through this blog, I actually assumed they would be back when I gave them a 12 seed in the Tournament. But if you look at their situation - highly touted young players stuck on a sinking ship - it just seems like a situation where they'll want to transfer out. Remember, it's pretty normal for kids/coaches to say "I intend on staying" the day before leaving. They don't want to burn bridges if they decide to stay.

I understand that you guys have a personal bias towards your team. And I respect that. But even as far as homers go... thinking that there is any way that Memphis can be a Top 15 team is really out there. And you should understand that when some fan angrily comes on here and tells me that I'm an idiot, most often I'm correct. The more angry somebody is, the more likely I am to be correct. That's just been the way things have been during the life of this blog.

The irony is that the anger you guys are showing is proof that you know I'm probably right. If I projected Kansas to be a 10 seed, you wouldn't see Kansas fans come on here and angrily attack me. They'd just figure I was an idiot and laugh. They know that they're not a 10 seed, they know that they'll be the #1 team in the country when the first polls come out.

But Memphis fans are scared about what is going to happen without Calipari. They're hoping to become the next Xavier, Butler or Gonzaga, but they could also be the next Loyola-Marymount. Memphis fans are very sensitive about this, and they're all over the place vehemently attacking anybody who dares tell them that they're not going to be a special team anymore. I've seen it all over the Internet. If you weren't so afraid that all of us analysts weren't going to be proven correct, you wouldn't care.

NJ1 said...


For starters, I never called you any name, certainly not "idiot." So I'm not sure why you would bring that up in your response to me.

Second of all, the burden of proof is on the one making the claim.

If you believe Witherspoon and Sallie will transfer, then it is you who are making the claim, and if Memphis fans dispute that, I believe the burden of proof is on you, as you are the one making the claim.

Thirdly, you are also making a claim that Memphis is a "sinking ship." I believe this claim to also be false, absent some substantial proof or evidence to the contrary.

Pastner has already assembled what looks to be avery solid coaching staff for next season. Two more very good names will come out shortly to complete the staff, but even just considering the two names that are already "official," the staff is very, very good. Additionally, Pastner has already retained Will Coleman as a recruit, and--as of right now--every current roster player minus Tyreke Evans and the seniors (absent proof to the contrary).

If Witherspoon and Sallie were intending to leave, perhaps they would, as you say, be mum about the options. But I doubt they would voluntarily yell out "We ain't going nowhere" on live television, unprompted, at a press conference.

In any case, the program described above--which still has some of the top facilities in the country and one of the highest budgets for travel, assistants, etc--does not sound like a sinking ship to me. In fact, if you stop by Memphis-leaning blogs, message boards, and fan sites, you will see that the post-Calipari morale among fans actually (somewhat surprisingly) couldn't be higher. Yes, the head coach is unproven as a head coach on a D1 level.

Yes, Memphis no longer is the national title favorite and no longer has the best recruiting class in history. But neither are almost every other program in the country.

In any case, I do not feel that I have shown any "anger."

If you believe you are correct, you are entitled to your opinion.

I seriously doubt that you are correct, seeing as how there is not even any credible rumor--much less substantiated sources-- I have seen that would indicate Witherspoon, Sallie, or Taggart are intereted in playing college basketball at any other program than Memphis next season.

But anything is possible, I guess. I could catch swine flu and die tomorrow, too.

Jeff said...

Go read the comments on this post. Go read the comments on the forum that you linked here from. I don't keep track of which mentally challenged individuals made which personal attack because I don't care. I am just going to delete them.

Now, I will continue to repeat this until I'm blue in the face or until it processes in your mind: at this point my projection of Memphis includes Sallie, Witherspoon and Garcia all staying. Because like I said, rumors are rumors, and I don't move teams around the BP65 without hard facts.

All I'm saying here in this post is that if you think about what these kids will most likely do, it seems as if they would want to go. Why stay on a Memphis team that is going backwards fast when you can play in a bigger conference? Believe me, they didn't come to Memphis because of the glamor of Conference USA or getting to play UAB. They came for Calipari.

Now, as for your comment about the press conference, in which situation would a player be more likely to declare loyalty to a program than in a public press conference like that? You've either got to say "We're coming back coach!" or you've got to transfer on the spot, because you've got to say something. But the best move for those kids is getting out, which is why there are a lot of rumors that they will.

But as I said, since they're rumors I am making clear that these are not certainties but simply rumors. I am not taking them into account in the BP65 until they are certainties. I can't possibly be fairer and more consistent than I'm being.

Squeaky Cheez said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jeff said...

I warned you guys, keep your flaming hatred to your private forum. It will get deleted here.

NJ1 said...

You might be interested to look up the press conference in question. The players were not asked, but piped up from the back of the room unprompted.

Finally, with a headline that says "more Memphis players on the move," I'm shocked you would be surprised if people were a bit testy.

The way the headline is phrased makes it sound as if it is a done deal, or at least that there is credible stuff suggesting the wheels are in motion.

In any case, we will see.

Jeff said...

If you even read the post you would see that the headline of the post has to do with Taggert and Dodson. Those were the two players "moving." I then talked about how rumors are that even more players could be going. But since they are just rumors, I am making clear that they're just rumors. Just read all of the posts on the front page of the blog - I don't say anything with certainty unless I have a link. That's why I gave a link on Taggart going pro and Dodson signing.

You guys are obviously new here, because if you were regular readers you would know that I'm the most cautious blogger out there, which is why I'm well respected. If I say something is a "lock" then it's a lock. If I might be wrong about something, I make it clear that I'm just making a guess and I might be wrong.

So while I'm used to having fans of teams bash me on their message boards as an idiot for daring to have lower expectations for their team than they have, to have a group attack me for the very opposite characteristic that this blog is known for is... ironic.

I've been accused of being a fan of just about every team in the nation. And I've been accused of being a "hater" of just about every team in the nation. When you are a good blogger, that's the way it should be.

Anonymous said...
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jerry said...

Where did you get your info from. First off I am pretty sure that Kentucky doesnt have enough scholarships to take sallie and witherspoon.Taggart coming back is important for us and every indicator is that he will be back so you saying he is gone has no basis in fact. He might not come back but until there is one bit of info supporting that dont use it. When stating your opinion say so.Saying it is extremely unlikely that they will be back is just your imagination. Simpkins got kicked off the team last year and as of now no one knows if he will be back. Garcia has stated he will be on the team and do not forget that this guy was a top 50 player. So lets see we have 4 four star players,witherspoon,sallie,mack and garcia, plus kemp and niles as the core. Bringing in coleman is a big addition that people will be talking when they watch him play. its looking like Latavious Williams is coming here if he gets his grades in order.Dont forget this guy is a top 20 player.Finally what i am reading is the juco guys that are being talked about as coming to memphis are very good. a lot of guys that can play go the juco route because of grades not that they cannot play. As far as Kentucky they will be a good team,hell maybe great, but remember it takes time to to learn a new system and Cal does not handle guys making mistakes on defense too well. Patterson,Orton and Cousins all basically play the same position and the dribble drive is made for guards not pf and centers. If Cal does not get Wall or Bledsoe it will be tough for Kentucky to win the Sec. I like Cal and think he is a great coach and his focus on one and done players is exciting but he did not achieve big at memphis until he had guys like Anderson,Dozier,Dorsey and CDR staying 3-4 years.As far as the rumors go there have been no rumors about witherspoon or sallie leaving except for the hysteria that was the first few days after Cal left.Since then there has been nothing to suggest that they are gone. You can write anything you want and call it a rumor. If you are going to write about rumors put links up from where you heard this rumor(recent links not ones that are a month old). GO TIGERS

Anonymous said...
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Jeff said...

To the guy who is just posting over and over again with personal attacks, I will turn off all posting if you don't stop soon. I don't want to have to sit here all night deleting your comments as soon as they show up, so I'm going to have to turn on comment moderation (posts will not show up immediately, and will require my approval )if you don't stop.

It's fine if you want to be an idiot in your own life, but don't ruin it for everybody else.

beava34 said...

I am going to try to be nice about this even though I'm pretty sure the only reason you wrote this "piece" was to get the Tiger fans riled up and get some hits on this site.

Like NJ1 said, you have got to have actual, real, linkable, existing sources or authority to back up what you say. If it is just rumor, then show links to where those rumors are. Just because somebody says something doesn't make it true, especially on an internet blog.

The credibility that you claim to have among the college basketball world is extremely suspect at the least if you can't even provide the names or places where you found your "information."

I am pretty credible among the internet too (it takes a lot to be internet credible), and I heard that the "rumors" you heard were concocted in your head.

As NJ1 pointed to above, all REAL, ACTUAL, EXISTING sources show the complete opposite of what you have said.

I know that you will dodge everything I said just like you have been doing all night, but your credibility has been seriously and legitimately attacked. The only thing left to do is provide sources or authority other than claiming you are right and you know.

Your word is all you are hanging this "credible" information on, and that is looking more suspect with each subsequent post.

And a good day to you sir.

Memphis88 said...
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Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...
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73tigerfan said...

Hi Jeff,
Just curious. Will this edition of your blog still be available for viewing next season? I really hope so! Because it's going to be fun to watch you trying to choke that crow down. Seriously, for the reasons already stated by many, you are so off base as to be comical. Thanks for the entertainment! (By the way, is this some sort of cyber version of cadid camera? I mean, this is a joke, right?)

Anonymous said...

So I'm a Tiger fan living in Hong Kong and I can pretty much guarantee I'm closer to this situation that Jeff "the ill-informed blogger". I think we all appreciate that you are just a blogger who has an opinion, nothing wrong with that. Maybe you didn't really know what was going on and you got a little carried away, nothing wrong with that.
Problem is, you got called out on it and instead of saying "whoops, I guess I didn't know exactly what I was talking about", you challenged an entire fan base asking for credible sources. Again there would be nothing wrong with that, except that you were the one making the initial claims, WITHOUT ANY CREDIBLE SOURCES.
I'm really happy for you that you're a "respected blogger on the internet" but unfortunately tonight wasn't one of your best nights.
On the plus side, I'm sure you got crazy traffic, so that's a good thing!

Anonymous said...

Jeff, you rely almost entirely on rumor then demand everyone else have sources. Not a personal attack, but dude, Wolken and other Tiger blogs have set out better sources than you. Taggart was happy when Pastner was picked. Sallie told one blogger he had thought of Europe but wants to be back. Witherspoon has all but made it clear he's staying at Memphis - see the Memphis Edge Wolken articles. I personally saw Garcia express a desire to stay on local Memphis news. Rumor has it he likes a Memphis girl and likes Memphis. BTW what are your sources and how outdated are they?

Anonymous said...


Here is a link for Witherspoon staying:

The quote, "We ain't going nowhere" can be heard at about the 26:30 mark of the um press conference:

From all accounts close to the situation (I won't cite sources as they are just various blogs and local news channels. And I recognize that it is rumor. However, it SEEMS to be well-grounded rumor.) Witherspoon, Sallie, and Garcia will all be back next season. I am almost positive they would be not headed to KY because from what I've read they do not have enough scholarships.

From your perspective (as an "outsider" looking in) I can see how it may look grim for the Tigers at first glance. However, from a Memphis fan's point of view, it surprisingly does not seem that bad, and it appears we will have a solid team next season.

Also, the impression many Tiger fans are getting is that we may very well come away with some top prospects still undecided. I realize that this does not effect your rankings of teams, but Memphis has a good chance at getting Latavious Williams, Eric Bledsoe, and Lance Stephenson.

Williams has cut his list to Memphis and Georgetown (

Bledsoe was close to signing with KY and BCG with Cyprien, a new addition to the Pastner staff, recruiting him, so he is also a possibility ( That link also has a bit on Williams as well.

And then there's Stephenson - maybe a longshot, maybe not. Here is a small bit on that possibility:

Hope all of this helps! And please don't judge all of Memphis fans on the few "idiots" who have posted here... I know that can get irritating.

Jeff said...

To the last anonymous, thanks for making a post without personal attacks. I don't worry too much about the flamers. I delete the ones with foul language, or that are just one word insults (one guy just tried posting "Tool" three times in a row before I shut him up with the threat about turning on comment moderation).

Thanks for the links, and again, I am well aware that all of the Memphis players who were on the team last season are saying that they will not transfer. And as I said, that is already my assumption for my current ranking of Memphis.

But as you understand, I cannot move the team without facts. I can't give them credit for recruits that they haven't signed yet. You may get Bledsoe & Williams (although supposedly your competition for Williams is not just Georgetown, but also pro ball in Europe), but neither of those players is going to make too much of an impact as a Freshman anyway. Stephenson could be a superstar, but everything I've heard says that since Kansas went and grabbed Henry that Stephenson's choices are now St. John's or Maryland. I haven't seen anybody even mention Memphis except the Memphis blogs. In other words... it's not likely.

Do pass along that I appreciate all of the people trying to guess my motives and intentions. The people on your forum seem to have concluded I'm a Badgers fan since my location is listed as Wisconsin. Even if my favorite team was dictated by my state, surely Memphis fans understand that there are several other big programs in Wisconsin, right? I'm actually surprised that I don't get accused having pro-Wisconsin bias more often. Generally people just assume that I bias towards whichever team is the rival of the team whose fans I'm upsetting. It's kind of peculiar.

Anyway, I have no ill will here. Like I said in the most recent post at the top of the blog, I am sympathetic to what you guys are going through at Memphis. It's a tough time to be a Memphis fan. I didn't mean to touch on a sore subject.

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Anonymous said...

Where do you get information? The internet or real sources?

Anonymous said...

Ok you know the last comment was funny but was not a personal attack. Just meant you dont have any reliable sources.

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Kyle Dempsey said...

You have asked responders to provide sources. How about you simply provide sources on the front end? If you have them, I imagine that they are at least a month old.

Cal tried to recruit Wesley Witherspoon via his mother to go with him (it's a violation to talk to a player under scholarship). Witherspoon listened and declined.

Roburt Sallie considered going to Europe, but is returning. I've not heard anything saying that he might transfer.

Shawn Taggart might stay in the draft or go to Europe. I've not heard anything saying he might transfer.

Darnell Dodson is the only Memphis signee to leave Memphis for UK. DeMarcus Cousins was not signed, and I believe has not signed with UK yet because he has not qualified yet (at least that was the case while he was still a Memphis commit).

Your post comes across as negative and grandstanding. You even comment in the followup that "Cal abandoned Memphis". How is that? Memphis is raising a banner next season as the winningest NCAA program over a 4 year period ever. Even better than UK. Memphis got great things from his time and is better for it. And somehow Memphis will be a #12/13 seed in the NCAA tourney next season, when the C-USA champ has never received that low of a seed? Memphis is realistically looking at a top 10 recruiting class. That is where he left the program. Better than he found it.

Truth is, blogs are a great source for recruiting info. But your post is pure conjecture and old rumor dredging. You present your post as facts. Please start such posts with titles like, "I THINK".

Jeff said...

I don't know how many times I have to repeat this... everything I posted was factual. There ARE rumors of those players leaving. Riddle me this: Why is it that Witherspoon is publicy saying for the time being that he will stay at Memphis next season, while Duke's Kyle Singler has not made any statement about transferring? The answer: nobody thinks Singler will transfer, some people think Witherspoon will transfer. The fact that Witherspoon has had to insist that he's staying is proof ipso facto that there are rumors that Witherspoon might leave. I was simply relaying that FACTUAL information.

And once again, you Memphis fans are giving distorted "facts". This statement about no C-USA champion ever getting a 12 seed or worse? It's meaningless. The conference has lost all of its elite teams. If Memphis had left to the Big East with everybody else a few years back, wouldn't the C-USA champion have gotten a 12 seed or worse every single season since then? Of course. So the statistic is meaningless.

Again, I have never ever seen a group of people so mad at somebody for relaying factual information.

If I had said "I have it on personal source that Wesley Witherspoon is transferring" and provided no evidence, THEN you could get mad at me.

By the way, if you're upset at me for saying that Memphis fans are mad at the way Calipari left them and stole their recruiting class, clearly you haven't read this thread from the forum that started this circus:

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Anonymous said...

Jeff, your tagline is "The most honest and in-depth NCAA prediction source on the web."

Yet, your blog is - admittedly! - pure conjecture.

Not going to attack you, or call you an idiot, but I will say that you are severely misguided and uninformed.

I work for, the Memphis Tigers affiliate for Rivals, and all indications (coming from Lamar Chance who is the Director of Media Operations and Shawn Taggart himself) point to his returning, as he is not projected highly.

Sallie is not transferring because, if you had done an iota of research, waded in some very treacherous waters on his way to landing at Memphis. He doesn't want to go through it again and have to sit out another year.

Witherspoon loves it at Memphis. He was quoted for saying "We ain't goin' nowhere!" and "We came to Memphis for Memphis, not the coach."

Pretty concrete proof.

Garcia will be eligible next year and will be with the Tigers. He told me himself at the banquet. (I work for TSR, I know these things.)

I respect your freedom of speech. However, I do not respect pure speculation and carelessness when it comes to reporting.

And a 12 seed? Are you insane?

Memphis is still going to win 22-25 games and C-USA next year. You don't go from a #2 seed to a #12 seed in one year. Doesn't happen. Especially with the talent we have.

Thank you, Jeff, and have a nice day. If you'd like to continue this conversation, you can e-mail me at:

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Jason King said...

I sympathize with your plight in dodging all of the arrows aimed at you the past few days, but your previous post was so incredibly thin on any kind of fact checking that it really left you open to attack. To maintain a readership you are simply going to have to do a better job, or people just will stop coming to you for information. Public statements by players that they in fact ARE coming back were ignored in your post(Witherspoon, Garcia) and Taggart has said he would return if not drafted in the top 35. In addition, Coleman also flatly said he is going to honor his letter of commitment. While blog readers realize that a lot of the material on these sites is speculative and not firmly grounded in fact, we should be able to count on something beyond the pure fiction that you posted.

ron lassiter said...

2009 jesse morgan of olney high school
2010 tyrone garland of bartram high… both are athletic and solve the tigers most glaring weaknesses: outside shooting and point guard play.…………
fyi morgan is # 5 of olney high (they wear blue and white) and garland is #21 (with the braids)of bartram

ron lassiter said...

my bad about those links
2009 jesse morgan of olney high school
2010 tyrone garland of bartram high… both are athletic and solve the tigers most glaring weaknesses: outside shooting and point guard play.
fyi morgan is # 5 of olney high (they wear white and blue ) and garland is #21 (with the braids)of bartram (bergundy)did i mention both were first team all state along with guys like dalton pepper and maalik wayns ? they both also avg over 28 ppg

Anonymous said...

Dear Jeff,

You are a DA!



Anonymous said...

I decided to revisit this one.

Missed Predictions:
Simpkins- Swing and a miss
Sallie- oops
Witherspoon- another miss

So to recap:

On people that could not reasonably leave (non-seniors) you were 1 out of four. 25%. That is terrible

Anonymous said...

actually 2/5. I am adding in Taggart