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LSU basketball team stands to benefit from trip to Australia

Advocate staff photo by HEATHER McCLELLAND --  LSU men's basketball coach Johnny Jones talks to media about the upcoming season Wednesday.

LSU men’s basketball coach Johnny Jones admitted Wednesday it was easier to take a trip to Australia next month considering he has assistant head coach David Patrick and freshman Ben Simmons on his team. Patrick lived in Australia before playing professionally there, while Simmons grew up there before moving with his parents to Florida 2½ years ago. It… Continue reading →

LSU’s heralded basketball freshmen Ben Simmons, Antonio Blakeney, Brandon Sampson raising expectations, and one's talking national championship

Advocate staff photo by HEATHER MCCLELLAND --   LSU freshmen basketball players, from left, Antonio Blakeney, Ben Simmons and Brandon Sampson are pictured Wednesday, July 1, 2015 in the LSU basketball practice facility.

It’s been a long time since the LSU basketball program created so much buzz in the middle of the summer. But on Wednesday, the first day of July, the lofty expectations that came from the nation’s third-ranked recruiting class that coach Johnny Jones and his staff put together hit with full force. That’s when the country’s… Continue reading →

Surprise move: LSU men's basketball associate coach John Treloar quits after accepting job in April

LSU Assistant coach John Treloar (LSU 2007 basketball mugs Steve Franz/LSU Sports Information)

The shuffling of the LSU men’s basketball coaching staff will last a little while longer for Tigers coach Johnny Jones. Former LSU assistant John Treloar, who was named associate coach by Jones on April 15 and was supposed to start work on Wednesday, had a change of heart and won’t be joining the Tigers’ staff after all. Treloar,… Continue reading →

Star coaches, impact freshmen give SEC basketball a brand new look

Avery Johnson (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

Southeastern Conference men’s basketball coaches are confident their league won’t take a step back in the post-Billy Donovan era. Donovan left for the Oklahoma City Thunder in April after leading Florida to two national titles and four Final Four appearances in his 19-year tenure. Donovan was replaced by Louisiana Tech’s Michael White, one of four new coaches… Continue reading →

Reports: UNO will remove interim tag, make ex-LSU standout Blake Dean its full-time baseball coach

Photo provided by UNO athletics -- Blake Dean

UNO decided to stick to whom it knows when it came to replacing former baseball coach Ron Maestri. After naming Blake Dean the team’s interim coach following Maestri’s decision to retire at the end of the 2015 season, UNO decided to remove the interim tag and make the 27-year-old the team’s full-time head coach Monday, several outlets… Continue reading →

LSU’s Johnny Jones is in favor of new 30-second shot clock, even though it won’t change Tigers’ offense much

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS -- LSU coach Johnny Jones

With an up-tempo style of play already in place, LSU men’s basketball coach Johnny Jones is looking forward to the new rules changes that were approved last month to improve the pace of play. The biggest change implemented for the 2015-16 season involved taking five seconds off the shot clock, which had been set at 35 seconds… Continue reading →

Grizzlies’ Jarell Martin says he has stress fracture in his foot

Advocate file photo by HILARY SCHEINUK --Former LSU  forward Jarell Martin works to ignite the LSU student section against Auburn at LSU's Pete Maravich Assembly Center.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Memphis Grizzlies first-round draft pick Jarell Martin says he has a stress fracture in his foot that will prevent him from playing in any summer league games. Martin and second-round pick Andrew Harrison were introduced Monday. Martin says he “overworked my body” throughout the pre-draft process. “We’ll see when we get back how… Continue reading →

Basketball recruiting: U-High’s Wayde Sims commits to LSU; Southern Lab’s Cailain Williams pledges to Lady Tigers

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- University High's Wayde Sims (44) drives past Port Allen's Nigel Allen (31) in the Class 3A quarterfinal boys basketball game, Saturday, Mar. 7, 2015, at Port Allen High School in Port Allen, La.

Some basketball players make a quick decision to commit to a college as soon as a scholarship is offered. That is definitely not the story of University High senior-to-be Wayde Sims, who committed to LSU on Sunday. Sims, the son of former LSU player Wayne Sims, was offered a scholarship by the Tigers during his freshman season… Continue reading →

LSU freshmen Ben Simmons, Antonio Blakeney attending Nike academy

LSU signee Ben Simmons

. LSU freshmen basketball players Ben Simmons and Antonio Blakeney, who enrolled in school earlier this month, are in Santa Monica, California, this week to take part in the inaugural Nike Basketball Academy. LSU is one of only three schools to have more than one player at the invitation-only event, which has 27 players attending. Simmons and Blakeney are the… Continue reading →

Mickles: For affable Avery Johnson, life is all about timing

Advocate staff photo by HEATHER McCLELLAND -- Former Southern University and NBA player Avery Johnson addresses the crowd in the F.G. Clark Activity Center on Feb. 2, 2013 for the ceremonial naming of 'Avery Johnson Court.' Johnson, who was inducted into the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame on Saturday, will begin his first season as Alabama's coach.

NATCHITOCHES — Upon being fired by the Brooklyn Nets two days after Christmas in 2012, Avery Johnson knew one thing: He was going to coach basketball again. He just didn’t know where or when. Actually, he sort of knew the when part of the equation. With son Avery Jr. entering the final year and a half of… Continue reading →

Danielle Ballard’s basketball career at LSU is over, according to university release

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS -- LSU's Danielle Ballard (32) is fouled by Arkansas' Jessica Jackson (00) while going up for a layup  in the first half of LSU's 53-57 loss to Arkansas Sunday in the LSU Pete Maravich Assembly Center.

Danielle Ballard’s basketball career, alternately marked by brilliant individual performances and disappointing disciplinary measures, has come to an end at LSU. On Saturday, the Lady Tigers issued a news release that focused largely on their offseason workouts but noted that Ballard — one of the biggest stars in program history — will not return for her senior… Continue reading →

Women’s basketball director Jon Silver takes assistant coaching job at Vermont

LSU director of women’s basketball operations Jon Silver accepted a women’s basketball assistant coaching position at the University of Vermont as announced Thursday by Catamounts coach Lori Gear McBride. Silver has been involved in all facets of the Lady Tigers program over the past four seasons. He has coordinated practice and game scheduling, team travel, fundraising, equipment, the… Continue reading →

ESPN basketball analyst Jay Bilas wonders why LSU didn't win more games with future NBA draft picks Jarell Martin, Jordan Mickey

LSU's Jarell Martin, right, and Jordan Mickey, left, takes part in a drill during a practice for an NCAA college basketball second round game in Pittsburgh Wednesday, March 18, 2015. North Carolina State plays LSU on Thursday. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

ESPN basketball analyst Jay Bilas took the LSU basketball program to task after former Tigers forwards Jarell Martin (selected by the Memphis Grizzlies with the 25th pick) and Jordan Mickey (selected by the Boston Celtics with the 33rd pick) were selected in the NBA Draft on Thursday. Martin played alongside former LSU forward Jordan Mickey, who also… Continue reading →

LSU's Jarell Martin, Jordan Mickey end 'very nervous,' heart-pounding night by landing with Memphis Grizzlies, Boston Celtics

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- Dwain Dinkins, 20, takes a picture of his friend, former LSU basketball forward Jarell Martin, center, with Martin's sister Crystal Veal-Barnes, left, and mother Joyce Veal, during a NBA draft party hosted by friends and family at Walk-Ons near LSU in Baton Rouge, Thursday, June 25, 2015.

In what became their second and final year at LSU, little separated forwards Jarell Martin and Jordan Mickey on the court as they helped the Tigers to their first NCAA tournament berth since 2009. Both players averaged more than 15.0 points and 9.0 rebounds and were first-team All-Southeastern Conference picks — including the coaches’ team — at… Continue reading →

Break ends for Alex Bregman after signing with Astros

Associated Press photo by David J. PhillipHouston Astros shortstop Carlos Correa, left, talks with newly-signed shortstop Alex Bregman, a former LSU standout, during batting practice Thursday in Houston. The Astros announced Thursday the signing of Bregman, who was selected with the second overall pick in the MLB draft.

HOUSTON — Alex Bregman has only had a week off since wrapping up his career at LSU when the Tigers were eliminated from the College World Series. That’s enough of a break for Houston’s top draft pick this season. He’s ready to get back to baseball. “I’m just very excited to get to work,”… Continue reading →

Aaron Nola selected for Futures Game

Photo by MIKE FEIFEL -- Aaron Nola pitches for the Lehigh Valley IronPigs

Former LSU and Catholic High standout Aaron Nola was selected to participate for the U.S. team in MLB’s Futures Game, set for July 12 in Cincinnati. Nola, chosen by Philadelphia with the seventh pick in last year’s draft, earlier this month was promoted to Triple-A Lehigh Valley. The 22-year-old is 2-0 with a 2.13 ERA in his first… Continue reading →

Former LSU shortstop Alex Bregman agrees to $5M-plus signing bonus with Astros

FILE - In this June 7, 2015, file photo, LSU shortstop Alex Bregman (8) throws out Louisiana-Lafayette's Joe Robbins during the third inning of a game at the LSU Super Regional of the NCAA college baseball tournament in Baton Rouge, La. The Houston Astros announced Thursday, June 25, 2015, that they signed the shortstop, who was selected with the second overall pick in the 2015 MLB First Year Player Draft. Terms of the contract were not disclosed. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File)

HOUSTON (AP) — The Astros have agreed to a contract with shortstop Alex Bregman, the second overall pick in the amateur draft, that includes a $5.9 million signing bonus. The deal, announced Thursday, is for well under the $7,420,100 slot value. Houston received the No. 2 pick as compensation for not signing pitcher Brady Aiken, last… Continue reading →

Q and A with LSU baseball coach Paul Mainieri: What was Tigers' ultimate undoing?

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- LSU head coach Paul Mainieri at practice, Wednesday, June 17, 2015, during the College World Series at Creighton University in Omaha, Neb.

LSU baseball coach Paul Mainieri sat down with The Advocate to discuss one of the best regular seasons in program history... Continue reading →

Jarell Martin, Jordan Mickey await NBA calls

LSU's Jarell Martin, right, and Jordan Mickey, left, takes part in a drill during a practice for an NCAA college basketball second round game in Pittsburgh Wednesday, March 18, 2015. North Carolina State plays LSU on Thursday. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

Former LSU forwards Jarell Martin and Jordan Mickey have a lot in common. They both bypassed their final two seasons of eligibility at LSU to enter Thursday’s NBA draft. Both are ranked among the top forwards in the draft and both figure to hear their names called near the middle of the 60-pick draft. Which… Continue reading →

Former LSU pitcher Anthony Ranaudo working on consistency

Texas Rangers starting pitcher Anthony Ranaudo throws to the plate during the second inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers, Thursday, June 18, 2015, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

Former LSU pitcher Anthony Ranaudo had just come off of a promising performance with the Texas Rangers in which he shut out the Los Angeles Dodgers for 6.2 innings on June 18. However, on Wednesday at Zephyr Field, Ranaudo was being shelled by the Class Triple-A New Orleans Zephyrs. Pitching for the Round Rock Express, he allowed… Continue reading →

Former LSU SS Alex Bregman to sign with Astros for $6 million; Chinea to sign Wednesday and Foster, Stevenson to ink in coming days

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- LSU shortstop Alex Bregman  makes the catch off Missouri's Trey Harris in the ninth inning last month at Alex Box Stadium.

Former LSU shortstop Alex Bregman has agreed to a contract with the Houston Astros, MLB.com reported Wednesday, and ex-first baseman Chris Chinea is signing with St. Louis Cardinals on Wednesday. Bregman, the No. 2 overall pick in the draft and a two-time All-American at LSU, landed in Houston on Wednesday morning and told MLB.com that… Continue reading →

First look at LSU’s 2016 baseball schedule: Tigers host Florida, Vanderbilt; travel to Missouri, Tennessee

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- LSU takes on TCU, Thursday, June 18, 2015, during game ten of the College World Series at TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha, Neb. LSU lost 8-4.

LSU’s 2016 baseball schedule includes marquee home series against Florida and Vanderbilt, a showdown with Louisiana-Lafayette in the Wally Pontiff Jr. Classic and trips to Missouri and Tennessee. The Tigers open SEC play with a three-game series against Alabama starting March 18 and close it against Florida on May 19-21. It’s the first time since 2010 that the… Continue reading →