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Stansbury mum on Turner, Bost's appeal


David Miller


The contents of this article have been modified since its original posting.


Monday''s Southeastern Conference basketball coaches summer teleconference didn''t yield much from Mississippi State head coach Rick Stansbury.  


Fresh off a weekend where news broke of Phil Turner''s release from his scholarship and the differing accounts of the player''s intentions for 2010-11, Stansbury shot down attempts to broach the topic once more. 


"I''m not going to get into the ins and outs of it," Stansbury said. "I''ve made a statement, he''s made a statement, we''ll move on with it. There''s two sides. I think everybody''s said something, so again, I''m ready to move on with it." 


Stansbury released a statement saying Turner had indicated to the team and its staff that he had no intentions of returning for his final season. Friday, Turner claimed Stansbury made a hurried decision based on what he called "rumors" about his intention to leave the program. 


While Turner''s departure wasn''t up for conversation, Stansbury did address the recent move involving his coaching staff and the status of point guard Dee Bost''s appeal to regain college eligibility. 


A bit over three weeks have passed since the university confirmed it would file the necessary paperwork to initiate Bost''s appeal after he missed the underclassmen NBA draft withdrawal deadline. 


The first year of the NCAA''s early withdrawal date, moved to early May instead of mid-June, means there''s no precedent for Bost or the NCAA to help make a decision.  


Stansbury didn''t say how far along the appeal process was, but he''s banking on the lack of prior cases to work in the team''s favor. 


"You asking my opinion on something you don''t have zero control of at this point," Stansbury said. "It''s a setback at this point. I don''t know much. It''s at a stage where they''re trying to put everything together. It''s first-time rule so we hope there''s some leniency.  There''s some question marks with us right now...Do we get Dee back or not?" 


Coincidentally, Bost posted this twitter update on the issue an hour before Stansbury spoke during the teleconference: "On top of my game like never before I made a mistake didn''t get the right info now wishing that everything goes through." 


Bost''s limbo comes with other question marks surrounding last year''s SEC West champion and SEC tournament runner-up, as finding a replacement for long-time assistant Robert Kirby is underway.  


Stansbury said he doesn''t have a timetable to make a new hire, and recruiting duties wouldn''t be affected being a man short on the staff. 


"Naturally, you want someone whose got experience and someone you know," Stansbury said regarding the search for a replacement. "I don''t know when I''m going to make a decision." 




Recruiting framework to help or hurt? 




The NCAA''s announcement that it has proposed prohibiting scholarships offers to recruits before July 1 in the summer between their junior and senior years in high school has SEC coaches split on the effectiveness of such a rule.  


The NCAA''s Recruiting and Athletics Personnel Issues Cabinet said it would back the proposed rule, which would also make coaches receive at least five semesters worth of transcripts before offering a recruit a scholarship.  


Ole Miss head coach Andy Kennedy acknowledged early commitments have hastened recruiting and the NCAA''s goal to "slow down" the process. 


"We''ve got some commitments in the upcoming class, and obviously that would have to change," Kennedy said. "If kids are wanting to make an earlier decision they should be able to do that. What I''d like to see is just giving us more access at an earlier age. So if they do slow down the process, we''ll be able investigate more and make a better decision.  


"We''re dealing with limited scholarship numbers. Who knows where it''s going next. We''re all in competition, especially in the SEC, for the elite players in the country." 


Arkansas coach John Pelphrey is fine with the current recruiting guidelines, though he does recognize the NCAA''s concern over player and parent concerns about pressure to make a commitment. 


"Used to, nobody signed before signing day," Pelphrey said. "Then all of a sudden a lot of guys make commitments to go to school before that particular time. Any time somebody makes a commitment to go to school, you better have relationship it''s based on. If a young man says he''s coming and doesn''t, you better have a backup plan. 


"It''s a little bit of gamble for the player, too." 


Early commitments and what the notion does for college basketball recruiting opens up the can of worms of the NBA''s one-and-done rule, which makes players wait at last one year following high school to enter the draft.  


Kentucky head coach John Calipari, who lost four freshmen to the draft this year, bemoaned the rule despite signing a handful of players who would normally enter the draft straight out of high school.  


Monday, Vanderbilt head coach Kevin Stallings vehemently dogged the rule, which he initially favored.  


"I''ve reversed my field on that," Stallings said. "Relative to the recruiting rules, again, can you stop a kid making a commitment before that time? There''s some things that have to be worked out. 


"On the surface, I would probably be in favor. Anything that brings some sanity back into recruiting. Without doing a lot of investigating, I think I would be in favor of it." 




Coaches not ready to abandon division setup 




During the SEC spring meetings, basketball coaches discussed the possibility of switching to a single table format instead of six-team divisions.  


Monday, league coaches shared their opinions on the issue after a pair of seasons in which the SEC East dominated the Western division. 


Florida head coach Billy Donovan said the conversation between league coaches lasted "about an hour" and that no one felt that window was sufficient time to make a decision for the future.  


One area Donovan said the coaches were in agreement was that the best teams, regardless of division, should make the SEC tournament.  


In that vein, the difficulty in re-shaping the setup is how to award conference tournament byes and start times. 


"Do you give a bye to teams that finish first and second in division or give byes to the teams with overall best records?" Donovan asked. "This year, you could have the same record with a team in the West, but it''s a little different in the East because we''re playing each other twice. What happens with identical records?" 






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