It was a busy day in the Minnesota basketball community on Monday.
First, I was part of a KSTP story on the whole Mr Basketball comments. A link to that can be found here. Nothing new there. Just the same things that Brooklyn Center coach Matt McCollister and I have already gone over. Ken Lien declined to say anything which wasn't necessarily a bad idea but it is still telling. What I'm wondering is when will the members of the committee come out and remove themselves from this mess? They've been incredibly quiet. There are no indications that Ken will step away. That makes sense since he's demonstrated no understanding of his actions or remorse for them. Since he owns the award I'm expecting that he'll stay. I hope that he would realize the damage that has been done and that the award is bigger than him and move it to someone else who can carry the mantle. That way our top player each year can be proudly called "Mr Basketball" like the top players around the nation
Speaking of other awards, the Minnesota Basketball Coaches Association later announced the McDonald Award. Its named for legendary Chisholm coach Bob McDonald. Starting with the 2017-18 season, it will be given to the senior basketball player of the year. The criteria for it are patterned after the Wooden award which is the college equivalent for the nation's top player. A great move by the BCA assuming they get a good committee of coaches from around the state to do it. Let's hope that this award is a worthy replacement to our current award. In other states it seems to work. My hope is that they use the forum of the state tournament to announce the winner which is what other states like Wisconsin do.