Plenty of basketball “experts” maintain that Washington State’s chances of beating Pittsburgh without Brock Motum are slim and none, and Cougars coach Ken Bone said Saturday there’s “a very slim chance” Motum will play Monday in the opening game of the College Basketball Invitational championship finals.
Motum, the Pacific-12 Conference scoring leader, has not practiced since injuring his right ankle when he stepped on another player’s foot early in Wednesday’s win at Oregon State.
“It’s not broken,” Motum said. “Just a bad sprain.”
Motum, hobbling on crutches and a protective boot, met with the media Saturday in Pullman and said he was icing his ankle, using an electrical stimulator and keeping his foot elevated to try to continue to reduce swelling and, hopefully, play Monday or later in the week.
The Cougars (18-16) play their final home game at 7 p.m. Monday. Wednesday’s Game 2 and, if necessary, Friday’s Game 3 will be played at 4 p.m. PDT at Pittsburgh (20-16). HDNet will televise the games.
North Carolina point guard Kendall Marshall doesn’t know if he will play today against Kansas in the NCAA tournament Midwest Regional final.
Marshall suffered a broken bone in his right wrist six days ago during the Tar Heels’ win over Creighton.
Marshall was fitted for a brace if he plays. He did not take part in any contact during practice in St. Louis, but was involved in the walkthrough and shoot-around, and had his wrist wrapped in an ice pack afterward.
STARTING A SERIES?
Kansas and North Carolina have played each other only nine times, and KU coach Bill Self was asked if he’d have any interest in a home-and-home series.
The short answer: Yes.
“I certainly think that it would be a great, great series,” Self said. “Kentucky and North Carolina play. And I guess we’re the second- (and) third-winningest programs of all time, and I think it would be unbelievably good if we could play.”
North Carolina coach Roy Williams had a different answer. “No,” he said.
RORIE PICKS CAL
Clover Park sophomore guard Ahmaad Rorie gave a verbal commitment to play for the University of California, scout.com reported.
Rohrie made an unofficial visit to Cal on Friday and gave his commitment.
“I wanted to get it (his decision) over with so I could focus on my schoolwork and AAU season without having to worry about offers and other colleges,” Rorie told scout.com. “I thought Cal was the right place for me.”
Rorie, who averaged 24 points a game, was The News Tribune’s All-Area player of the year. The Warriors placed fourth at the Class 2A state tournament. Rorie scored 46 points against Ellensburg and was named the tourney MVP.
McClatchy news services contributed to this report.