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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Isaac Bonton finds his rhythm, scores 22 points in efficient outing to lift Washington State over California

BERKELEY, Calif. – Most of Washington State’s basketball players hadn’t left the general Palouse region in at least six months – let alone for a basketball game – before boarding a plane for the Bay Area on Wednesday. Understandably, Kyle Smith was anxious to see how a young team with three freshman starters would fare in a setting other than the one that played host to the first nine games of the season.

From Facebook messages to FIBA tournaments, a behind-the-scenes look at how Washington State assembled the best recruiting class in school history

John Andrzejek will be the first to confess it was a shot in the dark. Even with all the channels of communication available to college basketball coaches and the players they recruit in 2020, there’s no handbook for how to track down a 17-year-old kid who grew up in the Delta State of Nigeria, moved to Senegal to polish his game at the African branch of the NBA Academy, then hopped across the Indian Ocean to train at the Centre of Excellence in Canberra, Australia.

Despite inexperience, Kyle Smith hopes to avoid year-two dip at Washington State

In 2010-11, Columbia's basketball program made many of the strides fans hoped it would when the Lions hired first-year coach Kyle Smith, going 15-13 with an improved 6-8 record in the Ivy League. But Smith's team experienced a small dropoff in year two, finishing with a 15-15 record while going just 4-10 in conference play.