Trials and Tribulations

Natalie Smith, David Smith's wife

Postby 3manweave » Thu Jul 21, 2016 3:28 pm

[July 3rd, 2015]

"Natalie, it's me. I'm alive, and I'm at a hospital somewhere in Alabama. I have a couple of puncture wounds to my lower leg, but otherwise I'm fine."

Ohmigod. It was David. I asked him what had happened, and where in Alabama he was, but he cut me off before I had a chance to continue.

"Nat, you and Brett get out of there, right now. The way I understand it, my disappearance and subsequent discovery has made national news. The guy that's after me, or who I think is after me is George Harris. Do you remember him?"

George Harris was a former business partner of his out of Indianapolis. He had embezzled nearly $100,000 from David's business ten years ago, and was put in prison after David turned him in to the authorities. I had heard he was released within the last month, but had no idea that he might seek revenge.

"If he knows I'm alive, he's going to come after you and Brett to coerce me to give him the amount of money he thinks that I owe him for his role in the business. Don't call anybody and let them know you're leaving. He may already have the house bugged, anticipating such a situation." He paused. "Go, now!" He said, and hung up.

Panicking, I grabbed Brett and hopped into the car, and drove off with no idea where I was going to go.
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Clay Haynes, prospective recruit

Postby 3manweave » Thu Jul 21, 2016 4:42 pm

[July 10th, 2015]

I took an unofficial visit yesterday with my parents, as we made the three-hour drive from Owensville to Highland Heights to check out the campus and visit with coach Banks and his staff. Honestly, I wasn't even considering Northern Kentucky prior to the visit. Now, I may have to change my tune. The players on campus were really chill, and coach Banks was adamant to say that they're really looking for some additional size for the following season, as they're losing a few of their post players to graduation.

I want to stay close to home, as it's the most important thing to me. In fact, my parents are pushing me to go to school right across the Ohio River to Evansville, which is just a stone's throw from my hometown. But I kinda want to do my own thing, you know? I'm the first in my family to go to college. Highland Heights is far enough away that I don't have to worry about being too far from home, but I'm close enough to make the drive if I want to come home on a weekend.

Damn...decisions, decisions.
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Ben Dover, Toledo evening news anchor

Postby 3manweave » Thu Jul 21, 2016 9:39 pm

[July 13th, 2015]

We have breaking news into the studio -- Toledo police have shot and killed an individual downtown in a hostage situation. The suspect has been identified as 47-year-old George Harris, who was recently released from jail about six weeks ago for embezzlement charges. He served ten years in a federal prison just outside of Indianapolis. He also had two unharmed hostages, thirty-six year old Natalie Smith and sixteen-year old Brett Smith, who are the wife and son of real estate mogul David Smith, who owns Smith & Smith Properties based out of suburban Cincinnati. They have been taken to a local hospital, where it is believed they will be treated and released to travel back to their hometown of Newport, Ky.

David Smith made national headlines recently when he went missing for nearly a month; apparently trying to escape from Harris, who was seeking retribution for money he believed he was owed by Smith. Harris was a former business partner of Smith's, and embezzled nearly $100,000 in proceeds over a period of three months prior to being arrested.
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Rob Banks, head coach at Northern KY

Postby 3manweave » Thu Jul 21, 2016 9:48 pm

[July 16th, 2015]

I can breathe a little bit easier, now that David and his family are back at home and safe. Police are going to follow up with any people that are known to be connected with Harris, but as of now there aren't any leads.

Back to basketball, Ronald Nored and I are on our way back from Chicago, where we went to go see point guard Quincy Flint at the Chicago Revue Camp.

Flint has decent size, and is a deft passer for his age. His first game he scored twenty points and had four assists. But the next two games against a bigger point guard, he tended to struggle. He looked out of place when he was moved to the off-guard position, as he's not a great shooter and more of a pure point.

He certainly has a college-ready body. However, I'm not sure that helps him here as it's possible that he's maxed out his potential. There's also a lot of stiffness going side-to-side in man-to-man defense, which limits him to being primarily a zone defender.

We were on the fence about him originally, but we've decided to scratch him from our board after the camp performance and move in another direction.

Combined with the funds we've used in recruiting so far, and the trip to Chicago, we're down to about $12,000 in total funds to last until the late signing period. Let's hope we fill all of our spots in November.
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Skip Tomylou, KNKY sports radio personality

Postby 3manweave » Thu Jul 21, 2016 10:18 pm

[August 1st, 2015]

We had the new Northern Kentucky head basketball coach, Rob Banks, on our show earlier today. Here is our podcast from our conversation with him earlier today in the 4 o'clock hour. It's our first chance to have him on the show, and based on our first impression, he seems like the right man for the job.

On being the head coach of the school's most visible program...

"I came from a big-time football school. Not on the Division I level, but nonetheless, football was a huge, huge deal there. A half-dozen national championships since 1999, and conference titles in the double-digits. You could think of them as the Alabama of Division II. The thing is though, we had a really, really good basketball program, too. Made the Final Four at the Division II level last year, and we won over ninety games in my four years as the head coach there. I feel as if I'm ready to take on the challenge of leading this program."

On the challenges of recruiting at the Division I level...

"We've gone up against Division I programs, and have been successful in recruiting certain players. Something we can offer those borderline kids is a better opportunity to play early, a spot closer to home, or a variety of factors. The academic requirements might be the biggest hurdle, but I have a pretty good team of assistants that have helped me keep up with that."

On his first few months in Highland Heights...

"Not going to lie, it's been a pretty busy and taxing few months so far, but I'm really settling in. The people around here are great, and I'm really, really glad to be here. I haven't really had a lot of time to myself."

On starting out his Division I coaching career in a brand new arena...

"BB&T Arena is an amazing facility. No offense to my previous employer, but it was a big reason why I took this job. For a school of this size to be able to build something of this quality is a big, big deal for us, and I think it's huge for recruiting."

On the pulse of the team so far...

"They're doing some voluntary split-squad workouts right now, and the attendance rate is around 98%, which is outstanding...the players are doing a good job of policing themselves and holding others accountable. We feel like we have a pretty solid roster that fits what we want to do this year and going forward."
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Norton Foundation press release

Postby 3manweave » Fri Jul 22, 2016 10:11 am

[August 7th, 2015]

The Norton Foundation has released their Norton Award watch list for the upcoming season of their fifty candidates. The Norton Award is the most prestigious award given out each year to the player who best demonstrates excellence on the court, in the classroom and in the community. The Norton Committee has announced the list of its 50 candidates for the award this season.

1. PG George Robinson (Illinois)
2. SG Jim Williams (Florida)
3. PG Frank Cole (Connecticut)
4. C Rolan Green (Duke)
5. SG Ty Anderson (LSU)
6. PF Jarvis Douglas (Notre Dame)
7. PF Lorenzen Hoyer (Louisville)
8. SF Rodney Sheinfield (Wake Forest)
9. PG David Sherrell (Arkansas)
10. SF Stephan Carrington (Florida)
11. PG Joe Cherry (North Carolina)
12. SF Bernard Mason (Wisconsin)
13. PG Carlos Payton (Pittsburgh)
14. PG Jared Lazosky (Pittsburgh)
15. PG Ben Rieck (Auburn)
16. PF Brad Houston (Alabama)
17. SG Johnny Davis (Michigan St.)
18. PG Terry Heide (Kansas)
19. C Jamal Miller (North Carolina)
20. SG John Roma (Arizona)
21. SG Michael Bradley (Mississippi St.)
22. C David Heard (Florida St.)
23. SG Jason Williams (UCLA)
24. PF Lamar Thornton (Massachusetts)
25. SG Maurice Porter (Georgetown)
26. C Billy Foster (Florida)
27. C Desmond Woods (Temple)
28. PF Pat Harris (Creighton)
29. C Dennis Keely (Louisville)
30. PF Cameron Green (Massachusetts)
31. PG Joe Chavis (Boston College)
32. PF Darrell Tucker (UCLA)
33. PG Joey Minahan (Georgia Southern)
34. SF Justin Duhon (Arizona)
35. PG Matt Graves (North Carolina)
36. PG Harold Holden (Michigan St.)
37. PG Mike Starkey (Indiana)
38. PF Scott Ash (Mississippi)
39. PF Nathan White (Kansas)
40. PF Michael Reis (Miami (FL))
41. PG Clint Bryant (North Carolina St.)
42. PF Jeremy Yeagle (Oregon)
43. SG Billy Redhage (Indiana)
44. C Derrick Dillon (Wisconsin)
45. SF Andre Guiden (Michigan)
46. SF Nate Douglas (Kent St.)
47. PF Joe Varley (Georgetown)
48. SG Parker Davis (Auburn)
49. PF Billy Watkins (Syracuse)
50. C T.J. Graham (North Carolina)
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John Sanders, prospective recruit

Postby 3manweave » Fri Jul 22, 2016 10:12 am

[August 8th, 2015]

The coaches at Northern Kentucky have been recruiting me really, really hard, and have been after me about visiting their campus, so I decided to take a visit. My visit was hosted by Jordan Garnett, who is from Indianapolis, so it was cool to know that other Indiana players have been to this school before, and I met so many hot girls. Coach Nored has been my main contact in recruiting, and the head coach, coach Banks, has called me once or twice. He's a real cool guy. Energetic, and he's been up front with me about what's going on at Northern Kentucky. It's going to be a tough job, but thinks I can be a centerpiece of a real solid program in a brand-new facility, and play extended minutes right away.

The arena is awesome. For a small school, it's in a real nice area and it's actually really close to Cincinnati, so there would be a big city nearby. I'm from a really small town, so it would be a bit of a culture shock to me. I would love to go to Indiana and play, as both of my adoptive parents are employed as administrators there in Bloomington (dad went to Purdue, and mom went to IUPUI), but coach Crean has offered me a walk-on spot only. As well-off financially as we are, I would still like to leave college and go out into the real world debt-free.

On the visit, they verified my height and weight, as there was apparently some concern that I wasn't really 6-foot-8, based on the film they had seen. Well, that was put to bed as I measured in right at 6-foot-8 and 210 pounds. They also wanted to talk academics and to make sure my grades were in order. I'm really nervous to take the SAT. My GPA is only at 2.5, so I'll need a higher score to get in most places. Coach Banks is really high on academic progress, and he said that he's making our education his top priority as the head coach. My parents were definitely on board with that.

All-in-all, I had a good visit, and will certainly consider NKU going forward.
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Billy Chapel, Newport LEO

Postby 3manweave » Fri Jul 22, 2016 10:51 am

[September 1st, 2015]

The conference preview for the Horizon League has just been released. On my lunch break, I decided to peruse the website where I found it. Here is the excerpt about Northern Kentucky, as they are picked sixth in the league this year:

6. NORTHERN KENTUCKY

Analysis: Led by new head coach Rob Banks, one of two first-time head coaches in Division I in the Horizon (Linc Darner being the other), the Norse are entering their first season in the Horizon League, three years after beginning their trek into the Division I foray. They spent their first three seasons in Division I in the Atlantic Sun conference, never finishing better than a tie for fourth place. Former coach Dave Bezold's best team might have been last year's team that went 13-17 and finished .500 in league play at 7-7, but it was not enough to keep him around after a 33-54 record overall, including a 21-29 league mark in the ASC.

Making Banks' job tougher is the departure of two of the better returnees on the roster in guard Tayler Persons and forward Daniel Camps. Persons was the ASC Freshman of the Year last year, averaging nearly fourteen points per game. Persons transferred to Ball State, where he will sit out the 2015-2016 season. Camps, meanwhile, transferred down a level to Division II Queens University of Charlotte (NC). He will not have to sit out a season in transferring down a level. In addition, Hagen Tyler, the best-rated commitment from Bezold's tenure; decided to seek other options, and ended up at Division II Campbellsville.

Banks, however, picked up some good recruiting momentum late, getting the commitments of Brennan Gillis out of Indianapolis, and Drew McDonald from nearby Cold Spring, Ky. McDonald is especially expected to play a big role, as the versatile big man can score on the inside or outside. They also snagged a late solid junior college transfer in Lavone Holland II, to round out the roster. Alabama transfer Jeff Garrett should also play a big role on the squad once he sits out his one-year transfer season.
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Ronald Nored, 2nd Assistant Coach

Postby 3manweave » Fri Jul 22, 2016 10:58 am

[September 15th, 2015]

Recruiting has been on a roll lately. We had three in-home visits this week, picking up commitments from center Clay Haynes and point guard Corey Young, both Kentucky natives. It's awesome to see us getting some great talent out of the in-state crowd!

We still have two spots to fill, and recruiting is not likely to slow down anytime soon as we're in the contact period right now. We're still looking for some interior size. John Sanders said that we're his leader right now, but wants to wait to make a decision. We also feel pretty good about Wallace Barker, who is a rangy 6-foot-9 guy that can shoot outside as well as inside. Barker is from Louisville, and the Cardinals have begun to give him some attention, which could put off his choice.
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Re: Trials and Tribulations

Postby 3manweave » Fri Jul 22, 2016 6:17 pm

[October 2nd, 2015]

With full-squad practices officially opening up around the country today, the AP and the coaches released their initial polls for the upcoming season:

Code: Select all
AP TOP 25
#   School                      Conf W-L
1.  Kentucky Wildcats           SEC  0-0
2.  Florida Gators              SEC  0-0
3.  Indiana Hoosiers            B1G  0-0
4.  North Carolina Tar Heels    ACC  0-0
5.  Duke Blue Devils            ACC  0-0
6.  Kansas Jayhawks             B12  0-0
7.  Connecticut Huskies         AAC  0-0
8.  UCLA Bruins                 P12  0-0
9.  Michigan State Spartans     B1G  0-0
10. Louisville Cardinals        ACC  0-0
11. Arizona Wildcats            P12  0-0
12. Pittsburgh Panthers         ACC  0-0
13. Illinois Fighting Illini    B1G  0-0
14. Wake Forest Demon Deacons   ACC  0-0
15. Georgetown Hoyas            BGE  0-0
16. Wisconsin Badgers           B1G  0-0
17. Syracuse Orangemen          ACC  0-0
18. Oregon Ducks                P12  0-0
19. Notre Dame Fighting Irish   ACC  0-0
20. Michigan Wolverines         B1G  0-0
21. Oklahoma Sooners            B12  0-0
22. Maryland Terrapins          ACC  0-0
23. Oklahoma State Cowboys      B12  0-0
24. Marquette Golden Eagles     BGE  0-0
25. LSU Tigers                  SEC  0-0

COACHES POLL
#   School                      Conf W-L
1.  Kentucky Wildcats           SEC  0-0
2.  Florida Gators              SEC  0-0
3.  North Carolina Tar Heels    ACC  0-0
4.  Indiana Hoosiers            B1G  0-0
5.  Duke Blue Devils            ACC  0-0
6.  Kansas Jayhawks             B12  0-0
7.  Connecticut Huskies         AAC  0-0
8.  Michigan State Spartans     B1G  0-0
9.  UCLA Bruins                 P12  0-0
10. Louisville Cardinals        ACC  0-0
11. Arizona Wildcats            P12  0-0
12. Pittsburgh Panthers         ACC  0-0
13. Illinois Fighting Illini    B1G  0-0
14. Georgetown Hoyas            BGE  0-0
15. Syracuse Orangemen          ACC  0-0
16. Wake Forest Demon Deacons   ACC  0-0
17. Wisconsin Badgers           B1G  0-0
18. Oregon Ducks                P12  0-0
19. Notre Dame Fighting Irish   ACC  0-0
20. Michigan Wolverines         B1G  0-0
21. Maryland Terrapins          ACC  0-0
22. Oklahoma Sooners            B12  0-0
23. Oklahoma State Cowboys      B12  0-0
24. Marquette Golden Eagles     BGE  0-0
25. LSU Tigers                  SEC  0-0
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