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Ballers and Bermudez

FIU officially announced the signings of forward Jerome Frink, guard Malik Smith and center Ivan Jurkovic Wednesday.

Frink and Smith were covered in a previous post on this blog. Jurkovic is a 7-0, 265-pound hoops nomad from Croatia. He did a season at Three Rivers Community College in Poplar Bluff, Missouri ("SAL-LOOT!"), then one season at Lon Morris College in Jacksonville, Texas. During the latter season, he averaged 4.9 points and 3.2 rebounds per game.

BASEBALL

Outfielder Pablo Bermudez got named National Hitter of the Week by CollegeBaseballInsider.com after hitting .588 last week with two homers and 7 RBI.

Good night, folks...

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So, are these three guys going to join any teammates from last year, or did everyone else join D. Ferguson in declaring for the NBA? Pardon the scream of laughter. And oh yeah, I think it is great that IT was such a wonderful "life coach." For $250,000 a year, the university could hire half a dozen people with that skill and service a few more than a bunch of pampered ballers with a highly inflated sense of value. Please, let's get real.

What a joke you've become DJN. Let me ask you, .why was Adam Beasley involved in the story? It's obvious he asked not to cover FIU but all of a sudden he contributes to that non-story article. Seems fishy to me. If I were you, I wouldn't write a story with that clown. Just calling it how I see it.

I'm sure either of you could have wrote that story by yourself.

Howwas that Isiah Thomas news? Because it was written it with a sinister tone? If there's fire report on it, but don't come back when you didn't find anything and tell me there is smoke.

How about a story on the new conference foes FIU will face in C-USA? That story was done weeks ago by newspapers in other C-USA cities. How about a story on Pitino's ability to jump right and start signing players immediately.

a 7ft center who average 4 pts and 3 reb in Jr college...what a joke FIU

I really can't believe I'm having to spell this out again, but...

I don't know how your peers and colleagues think, but when Thomas was hustled out and FIU didn't give a reason -- even just a "he didn't win enough" -- everyone I hang around with who cared at all speculated there was some truly nasty stuff that had happened. Gee, no reason for that, right? It's not like Thomas has lost a multi-million sexual harrassment suit against him or that FIU's ever violated NCAA rules, right? It's why AP's Tim Reynolds and I asked Pete Garcia again about it at the Pitino introductory press conference. It was our first chance to do so as he'd gone underground post-firing. It's what I've asked several people about for weeks after the firing.

Going over everything in the file, there was no reason stated. But there was also no indication of anything majorly untoward, which is what everyone with five brain cells and half a care was thinking could be the case. And, there was a low budget athletic department acknowledging they owed $660,000 to the fired employee, would pay it and an athletic director saying there was no reason for them not to pay it. So, the school is saying, officially, "nothing really, really bad happened that's going to land us in court or get us caned by the NCAA. Any of that would be a violation of his contract and we're saying he didn't violate his contract."

That's news. Everybody thinks there's a gargoyle ugly underbelly to something, evidence says there isn't and one party goes on the record that there isn't, it's news. The coach touted as working for free one season actually made six figures anyway from that lean athletic department? News. I realize there's no Drama Queen conflict or sexy sizzle to it. Sorry about that.

FIUJM, sorry you feel I've become a joke. Adam saw I was swamped covering and helping cover a few other small non-FIU events -- NFL Draft, Panthers playoffs, Heat playoffs -- and asked if I wanted him to make the public records request (I think he's got it on a save/get). We both went over the information. We both did the literal and figurative math. I talked to Pete Garcia and Isiah Thomas. I wrote the story. It carried a double byline. Somehow, after 25 years at The Herald during which I've built a good reputation among colleagues at The Herald and peers around North America, I don't think that's a career-wrecker. I'll take your advice for what it's worth.

OC, I started writing about Pitino's recruiting on this blog within days after he was hired. I've written on players he might go after, players he has gone after and players he's gotten. I've included video when possible. He's done what coaches do in this situation and gotten some decent guys in the cobbling. But don't act like he's scrambled up the 1965 UCLA freshman class.

Diagodog, yes, I am the professional reporter who works for a professional media outlet that does, despite what folks think, does have some standards. So, guess what? Not every conversation I have with a potential source is on the record or sees the light of day. I've spent entire meals, Heat pregames, school play-and-pickup periods talking to folks about this firing. There are accusations that would make a few headlines, but would be irresponsible to print or post without evidence. I have my own theory about why what went down happened the way it did. Are they supported enough by interviews and evidence to post or print? Nope. Is part of it the 26-win record? Yep.

Alright then. I for one appreciate your work DJN. As to the FIU fans I say: Let's stop fighting the imaginary villains - - they are just windmills in the distance.

DJN, you must realize by now that seeing Adam's name associated with an FIU article is like a "your mama" based expletive, lol. The story didn't have much to it but as you said, it laid some demons to rest.

So our MBB roster is set, didn't lose as many players as first thought. What is your take on the current roster?

DJN

THIS FIU FAN BASE (ALL 14 OF THEM)ARE WORTHLESS..THEY ARE NEVER HAPPY...LITTLE MAN COMPLEX

I think you do a good job, DJN. The point of this blog, I presume, is to allow for some back and forth (and to allow the underendowed fans of other institutions to vent, of course).

Diagodog, yes, the point here is to provide breaking news, not-so-breaking news, analysis and, yes, back and forth with readers. And to let me give wider audience to really cool "Soul Train" videos.

FIU4Ever, I don't know. I haven't seen some of the newbies play. Some come with good reps.

I don't mind criticism. I do mind intimation I'm lazily ignoring stories, especially as thinly as we're stretched in the sports department these days.

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