The good news continues to roll in for the Nevada basketball program.
Last Monday, freshman stud Cam Oliver withdrew his name for the NBA draft and announced he will be returning for his sophomore season.
— Cam Oliver (@SpaceCamm) May 23, 2016
A couple days later, news broke that coach Eric Musselman landed 6-7 twin transfers, Caleb and Cody Martin, who played their first two collegiate seasons in the ACC at North Carolina State.
— Cam Oliver (@SpaceCamm) May 26, 2016
Caleb scored 11.5 points per game and grabbed 4.7 boards a night for the other Wolfpack last season. Cody is not as prolific a scorer (6 ppg, 4.4 rpg) but is the better shooter of the two.
The Martin twins join Hallice Cook (a 6-3 guard who transferred to Iowa State from Oregon State) and Kendall Stephens (a 6-7 guard from Purdue), who signed with Nevada as transfers a couple weeks ago.
It is the second straight season Musselman has brought in four transfers that must sit a year before becoming eligible.
This winter, Marcus Marshall (6-3 guard who scored 19.5 points per game at Missouri State two years ago), Jordan Caroline (6-7 forward who averaged 9.2 ppg, 6.2 rpg as sophomore at Southern Illinois), Leland King (6-7 forward who averaged 14.6 ppg and 7.8 rpg as sophomore at Brown) and Sam Williams (6-8 forward who went to Hug High then junior college) all will become eligible.
Marshall will join sophomore point guard Lindsey Drew and senior D.J. Fenner in the backcourt. He figures to help fill the void left by Marqueze Coleman’s graduation.
King, Caroline and Williams will accompany Oliver and junior Elijah Foster in one of the deepest front courts in the Mountain West.
And that is without mentioning one of the best recruiting classes in the conference.
Musselman has been making waves since he took over the Nevada program more than a year ago. Last week was no different. The waves are just getting larger.
Nevada baseball nearly climbs through losers bracket
No team in the Mountain West entered the weekend’s conference tournament in Albuquerque as hot as Nevada.
The No. 3 seeded Wolf Pack won 16 of its previous 18 before throttling San Diego State 13-5 in the first round last Wednesday.
Then Colton Thomson happened.
The No. 2 seeded Lobos’ ace shoved a complete game three hitter, sending Nevada to the elimination bracket with a 3-0 defeat.
On Friday, Nevada edged San Diego State, 5-3, and broke out the bats, obliterating the regular season champ, Fresno, 25-6.
A 12-1 rout of Air Force on Saturday sent Nevada to its first ever Mountain West championship game – against host New Mexico.
However, with tired arms, having thrown 42 innings in four days, Nevada’s run came to a close, 14-4. Evan McMahon started for Nevada on the bump. It was his first start of the season.
The Wolf Pack finished the year with a 37-24 overall record. The 37 wins were tied for the eighth most in program history. The four Mountain West tournament victories in the most in program history. And the second place finish in the MW tourney was also the best in program history.
The basketball program isn’t the only one on campus trending in the right direction.
T.J. Bruce wasn’t named the Mountain West Coach of the Year (Fresno’s Mike Batesole received the honor), but it’s hard to argue anyone did a better job than him.
And then it was summer
Washoe County School District students and employees will disagree, but in the Northern Nevada sports world, it’s summer.
The prep spring athletics schedule has come to a close. Nevada’s sports followed suit on Saturday with the baseball team coming up two victories shy of an NCAA berth.
Schools will break for summer next week and seniors will receive a piece of paper that reads ‘thanks for playing, now get out of here.’
We will kick our feet up, and enjoy a significantly slower pace to life. We will go to the lake (I made my first trip on Saturday). And as we do only in the summer months, we anticipate those long car rides.
Then we will blink and it will be football season.
Kickoff is 87 days away.
If you listen closely, you can already hear the marching band. It’s the final countdown.
Nathan can also be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org