Michael Rand started RandBall with hopes that he could convince the world to love jumpsuits as much as he does. So far, he's only succeeded in using the word "redacted" a lot. He welcomes suggestions, news tips, links of pure genius, and pictures of pets in Halloween costumes here, though he already knows he will regret that last part.

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Posts about Minnesota state tournaments

TFD: One of the craziest basketball games we've ever seen

Posted by: Michael Rand Updated: March 13, 2014 - 5:28 PM

We popped over to the Class 1A boys' basketball tournament at Williams Arena this afternoon. When we arrived, first-time tourney entrant Fond du Lac Ojibwe had a 17-point lead with 12 minutes to play over Canby.

It seemed as though the Ogichidaag would coast to the finish.

And then ...

Canby went on a 19-2 run to tie the game 58-58 with about five minutes left. And that was just the beginning.

Both teams looked gassed toward the end of regulation, but Fond du Lac looked particularly winded. Two of the team's top players ended up fouling out, but it's a good thing Davonte Williamson didn't.

As the game went from regulation (he scored four key points down the stretch to force overtime) to a first OT session (he blocked a shot on a fast break to end the first session knotted at 73) to a second overtime (he had the only basket for his team) to finally a third overtime (he had countless key rebounds and assists), Fond du Lac finally prevailed 85-82 in 3OT.

Williams played all 48 minutes. He was exhausted afterward; he smiled about it when we talked to him afterward, but at the time there was no chance he was running off the court with his teammates. He staggered off slowly, satisfied but dragging.

On a team with virtually no height (6-1 is about as good as it gets), Williamson offered 23 points and 20 rebounds. It was a remarkable performance in one of the most remarkable games we have ever seen.

We'll have video up later on Startribune.com that hopefully captures the spirit of the thing -- not just the game, but what this all means for the Fond du Lac community.

The scene from the impending Tyus Jones announcement is pretty crazy (and he picked Duke)

Posted by: Michael Rand Updated: November 15, 2013 - 3:12 PM

We went to the Reid Travis college announcement last week -- he picked Stanford, remember? -- and we have to say this Tyus Jones affair in Apple Valley is a little more intense.

We were told to arrive at 2 p.m. even though he's not announcing his college choice until 3 (or roughly 3:07 p.m., it would seem). There is a meticulous schedule of events, as evidenced by that picture.

A feed from ESPNU's coverage is playing on a big screen here as we wait.

The scene is the Apple Valley gymnasium, and already by 2:30 p.m. the bleachers were two-thirds full -- and sure to fill up fully by the time everything starts.

Where is Jones -- a dynamic point guard and, of course, one of the top recruits in the country -- headed? Honestly, we don't know. The leaders in the clubhouse are Kansas and Duke, as everyone knows. We have no more insight beyond that.

The good news is that we should all know in 30 minutes or so.

We'll throw a quick update on the bottom here after he makes his decision, but Startribune.com will have complete coverage with video and a story shortly after the announcement.

Update: Duke.

Minnesotans Nate Wolters, Sam Dower getting some basketball love

Posted by: Michael Rand Updated: November 4, 2013 - 3:35 PM

If you like to keep up with former Minnesota athletes playing elsewhere, you DON'T always have to wait for Stu's Hunt Down. Sometimes we check in with some updates ourselves -- like today, for instance, with a quick peek at two Minnesota natives getting some basketball love at different levels:

Nate Wolters: The St. Cloud Tech product, who starred at South Dakota State, was a second-round pick in the NBA draft and wound up making the Milwaukee Bucks' roster. Not only that, but Wolters has been thrust into action -- playing heavy minutes and even starting one game so far out of three for short-handed Milwaukee. Wolters had 14 points in 29 minutes off the bench in the Bucks' only victory this season (105-98 over Boston) and was also a plus-23 in that game. He had seven points and 10 assists in 36 minutes against the Raptors on Saturday.

Sam Dower: The former Osseo standout now with Gonzaga was tabbed one of 25 "breakout" college players by ESPN's Jeff Goodman. Dower checked in at No. 7. The Gonzaga big man could be in for big things this season. Per GoodmanDower has been a role player for the last three seasons, playing behind guys like Elias Harris, Robert Sacre and Kelly Olynyk. All three are now in the NBA. This season will be different for the skilled Minnesota native, largely because Mark Few needs Dower.

Stu's Hunt Down: Former Rochester Mayo standouts Kelly and Coco Miller

Posted by: Michael Rand Updated: August 22, 2013 - 3:45 PM

Each week, commenter RandBallsStu (branding!) tracks down a former Minnesota sports figure about whom you might have forgotten. This week, it's a bonus: twins! Stu?


The Hunt Down

Names: Kelly and Coco Miller
Claim to Fame, Minnesota: after an outpouring of demand for more Rochester-based Hunt Downs following last week’s post on Steve DeBus, the HD gladly takes up the task of profiling Kelly and Coco Miller.  The Millers, identical twins born four minutes apart, played basketball for Rochester Mayo.  They led the Spartans to state titles in 1995 and 1997, sharing Minnesota Miss Basketball honors in their undefeated ’97 season.
Claim to Fame, Everywhere Else: in a move designed to upset Sid, the Millers bypassed the University of Minnesota and attended Georgia instead, where they shared another prestigious honor, the James E. Sullivan Award for the nation’s best amateur athlete, in 1999.  They were finally separated by the 2001 WNBA draft, when Kelly was taken second overall by Charlotte and Coco was selected by Washington with the ninth pick.  For a change of pace, they were named the league’s Most Improved Player in different years (Coco 2002, Kelly two years later).  They were briefly reunited in 2010, when both played for the Atlanta Dream.
Where They Are Now: both live in the Phoenix area, where Coco teaches at Anthem Prep, and, as you may guess by the names, both are involved in Kelly and Coco’s Sports Performance Training business and the Team Miller basketball program.
Are They On Twitter: here’s Coco, allegedly.  
Have They Been in a Twitter Feud with Patrick Reusse: no. 

Glorious Randomness: Team Miller is part of the Arizona Eagles youth basketball organization.  As a quick spin around the website will let you know, other coaches there include Greg Ostertag’s son, former Northwestern star Kevin Coble, and AMP (redacted) LEE!  #vikimgs 

Shirtless OKC Thunder fan makes up team chant/song, records it, and now you watch it

Posted by: Michael Rand Updated: April 22, 2013 - 3:17 PM

Just because ... well, we don't know why. Just because.

Pretty sure it is the video star himself who wrote in the comments: it was hot here in SoCal yesterday and this video was a spontaneous situation. I had the melody in my head and didn't want to lose it so I had to act quickly.

If the OKC Thunder promotions folks have any sense, this will be on the video board at some point during Game 2 against the Rockets.




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