1. Murray State had no choice. The Racers had to suspend point guard Zay Jackson for the season after surveillance footage showed him hitting two pedestrians with his car in a Wal-Mart parking lot in September, an offense that resulted in a 30-day jail sentence. Murray State athletic director Allen Ward issued a statement announcing the suspension Wednesday. Now we’ll see how committed Jackson is to the university and the program. He has to pay the consequences for his actions through the legal system. And he should now try to prove to the university, the program and the community that he deserves a second chance. This isn’t about basketball. This is more about Jackson trying to recover from a horrific mistake that could have proven tragic. The Racers will be hurt by his absence on the court, but they could not afford the distraction that would have come with Jackson playing this season. Murray State coach Steve Prohm has an All-America in Isaiah Canaan and has run a program built on excellence in his brief tenure. He couldn’t take a step back with Jackson playing later in the season.
2. Michigan State and Connecticut are both going to try to stay on East Coast time while in Germany Nov. 7-10. The Spartans and Huskies won’t get up (at least per their schedules) until after noon, and have practice and dinner set for late into the night. The tip for the Nov. 9 game at Ramstein Air Base is midnight local so that it can be televised in prime time on the East Coast.
3. I have to credit UCLA for its constant open policy of updating every injury from practice, even a shoulder injury to Shabazz Muhammad. The highly touted freshman forward hasn’t been cleared by the NCAA for competition yet -- meaning the Bruins can’t update that status since they don’t know. But they weren’t hiding the news that Muhammad was to have an MRI on the injured right shoulder Wednesday evening. The 6-foot-6 Muhammad has a shot to be a first-team All-America if he is eligible. He’s currently in a 45-day window where he can practice (but not play) while the NCAA investigates his eligibility. The Bruins have always been quick to update any injury under Ben Howland, a practice that would be helpful if other teams followed it, too.