Midnight Madness will probably start early next season

Memphis Madness is the event that takes place in the middle of October that officially kicks off the new season in college basketball. It is also the first official practice for every team in Division I basketball. Fans probably will not have to wait until the middle of October, because it may move up on the calendar.

The NCAA committee decided last month to allow its men’s basketball teams to start fall practice two weeks earlier, meaning Memphis can put on its Madness event earlier in October or perhaps even in late September.

Like NCAA’s women’s basketball teams, the men’s teams can conduct up to 30 practices in the six weeks before their first regular season game. The regular season will officially kick off on Nov. 8. As a result, the first of those 30 practices can begin as soon as Sept. 27.

The NCAA committee hope that the measure will allow the coaches to have more flexibility with their preseason practice schedule.

“I’m excited about it,” said coach Pastner, who will not know the exact date Memphis will begin practice until after he has scheduled the Tigers’ first regular season game. “With us having a lot of new guys coming in, we’re going to need to start practice earlier and get them ready to go. I think it’s good.

“In previous seasons you start in the middle part of October, practicing daily with the team, and you’re trying to get everything in. This time now allows you to gradually put things in, and I think it’s beneficial for us with the amount of people we have coming in that don’t know our system. This will help is in the long run.”

Wren Baker and Pastner have been discussing a new design for the Tigers’ home court at the FedEx Forum.

“We’ve got a new floor going in and we’re considering some different designs on it. We haven’t decided on one yet,” said Baker. “I’ve got an idea of what I would like to do, but there’s a lot of people who want their hand in the cookie jar on that decision.”

GRADUATION DAY

Five players off of the team will be among the 45 U of M student athletes receiving their degrees Sunday at the FedEx Forum.

Four of the five are seniors: D.J Stephens (sport and leisure management), Ferrakohn Hall (interdisciplinary studies), Stan Simpson (interdisciplinary studies) and Charles Holt (engineering technology). Junior Tarik Black, who is transferring to another school to play basketball, will be graduating a year early with an degree in organizational leadership.

The Tigers have five other players scheduled to graduate a year early this summer in Joe Jackson, Chris Crawford, Hippolyte Tsafack, Antonio Barton, and Trey Draper. Like Black, Barton is also transferring to another school.

I received this information from the Commercial Appeal.

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