A couple of afternoon notes from New York, including Washington State's Abe Lodwick earning first-team All-Academic honors from the Pac-10. For more, read on.
• Let's see, where to start. ... Was asked by a few folks about the new basketball scoreboard after we reported the WSU Regents' action the other day. So I went to Bill Moos and asked. The plan right now is for the scoreboard to hang from the Beasley Coliseum ceiling over center court, like most facilities have. That's the plan and the optimum location. The only way that won't happen is if the engineers tell Moos the ceiling won't hold the weight. The preliminary appraisal didn't believe that was the case, so the department is moving forward with the center-court board. Now, if the weight of the board and sound system, which hangs from center-court now and will have to be incorporated or moved, is too much, then the fall back plan is a large board in one endzone – like at the Spokane Arena – that would wipe out a few seats. That is not the way Moos or the department wants to go. ... We wrote a couple days ago about Klay Thompson and the NBA, giving you the dates over the next month or so the process will play out. I'm more convinced than ever that Thompson will declare for the draft before the April 24 deadline, but not hire an agent. That is not from anything Thompson has said publicly, but just my own reading of the way the wind is blowing. Between April 24 and May 8, when the NCAA says a player has to pull his name to be eligible the next year, he'll make his final decision. As I look at it, even if Klay wants to come back, he's allowed to do this once without any penalty – and he's a junior. So, why not test the waters? If the answer isn't what he wants to hear or it looks as if there will be a lockout, then he can withdraw and play his senior season. If he gets guarantees he'll go high enough and there's a good chance the labor problems will be worked out, then he moves on. Simple. And probably best for him. ... The football team has moved its practice time to early morning tomorrow – and by early, we mean 6:15 a.m. The Cougars will be done by 8:30 a.m. The time change allows the team to watch the basketball team in the NIT semifinal, which starts at 4 p.m., usually the middle of practice.
• That's all for tonight. We will return in the morning. Until then ...