GW hoops prepped for road fight at Notre Dame

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GW hoops prepped for road fight at Notre Dame

The matchup: George Washington (1-1) takes to the road for a second straight road game. This one involves a rise in competition and the first ever meeting with Notre Dame (3-1). The two sides, led by coaching friends, square off Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m. in South Bend.

Last time out: Rebounding from a season-opening home loss to Youngstown State, GW downed Boston University 72-59 on Saturday behind freshman guard Joe McDonald and defensive leader Isaiah Armwood. The Colonials led the Terriers by a solid margin throughout as McDonald, the reigning co-Atlantic 10 Rookie of the week,  tallied 21 points and seven rebounds while Armwood controlled the paint. The energy big man and former Villanova transfer finished with 12 rebounds and eight blocks. GW shot 52.2 percent (24 of 36) from the floor while holding Boston to 32.4 percent (22-68).

The coaches: The friendship between George Washington's Mike Lonergan and Notre Dame's Mike Brey, a former George Washington basketball star and D.C. area native, dates back to their high school playing days for Archbishop Carroll and DeMatha respectively. While Lonergan continues sifting through his roster - a deeper one than last year thanks to an impressive freshmen class led by McDonald and swingman Patricio Garino - for a steady rotation, Brey typically plays iron man ball seven players.

The foe: Notre Dame fell out of the Top 25 this week after a 79-70 overtime loss to Saint Joseph's, but came back the next night for a 10-point win over Brigham Young on Saturday. Bruising big man Jack Cooley is a double-double force, averaging 17 points and 11.8 rebounds. Bowie native Jerian Grant (11.3 ppg) and Columbia's Eric Atkins (45 percent on 3-pointers) provide the perimeter help.

Virginia guard Marial Shayok transferring from program

Virginia guard Marial Shayok transferring from program

By Ben Brown

Following a disappointing end to a once-promising season, Virginia guard Marial Shayok and forward Jarred Reuter will transfer to another school, head coach Tony Bennett announced Wednesday. 

"Marial and Jarred informed me today that they are leaving the Virginia basketball program and are looking to transfer to other schools," Bennett said. "I thank Marial and Jarred for their hard work and contributions to our program, and wish them success in the future."

Shayok was the Cavaliers' second-leading scorer at 8.9 points per game, despite playing only the fifth-most minutes and regularly coming off the bench. The Ontario product scored a career-high 23 points in Virginia's win over UNC-Wilmington in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. 

Reuter averaged 10 minutes a game and averaged 3.8 points per game. 

Shayok and Reuter transferring comes at the end of a very disappointing season for Virginia. The Cavaliers began the season in the top 10 of the AP poll, and halfway through conference play they were near the top of the standings in the ACC. But that was before the team went into a major funk as they lost four of their last seven games, which dropped them to sixth in the conference standings. 

Virginia lost in the second round of the ACC Tournament to Notre Dame, and then got blasted by Florida by 26 points in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. 

In addition to the losses of Shayok and Reuter, London Perrantes, the team's best player and leader, is graduating. 

After a rough regular season, Virginia's offseason is off to a rocky start as well. 

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VCU reportedly wastes little time finding Mike Rhoades, Will Wade's replacement

VCU reportedly wastes little time finding Mike Rhoades, Will Wade's replacement

BY TYLER BYRUM, @theTylerByrum

Less than 24 hours after VCU saw yet another head coach in Will Wade, take off to a Power 5 school, the athletic department has already found a replacement, according to a report. 

Wasting no time, or allowing any speculation to build, the Rams have hired Mike Rhoades, the head coach of Rice, as Will Wade's replacement.

Rhoades will be the 12th coach of the men's basketball program in VCU history. 

The announcement was first reported by CBS's Gary Parrish:

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Rhoades is a former VCU assistant and associate head coach for five seasons. During his time with the Rams he helped the Shaka Smart led team to four NCAA Tournament appearances, including the Final Four run in 2011.

After Smart's departure to Texas, many considered Rhoades to be on the short list of coaches that VCU would contact. His familiarity with the program and the culture was exactly what VCU was looking for in order to have continued success at the school. The athletic department went on to hire a former assistant, but instead hired Wade. 

In 2014, he took on the head coaching position at Rice where he has been for the past three years. His overall record with the Owls is 47-52 with this past year being the only one to finish above .500. Receiving a bid to the CBI Tournament, it was the Owls first postseason appearance since 2012. 

If Rhoades does not work out for the Rams, there is only one more assistant remaining from the Final Four team that has yet to take over the program. Mike Jones is currently the head coach of Radford and has been there ever since that season. 

Wade's departure was yet another in a long line of talented, up-and-coming coaches using VCU as a springboard to a high-major position.

Jeff Capel began the trend in 2006, when he left for Oklahoma after returning the Rams to the NCAA Tournament in 2004 for the first time since 1996. His replacement, Anthony Grant, led the Rams to two NCAA Tournaments before leaving to take the head coaching job at Alabama. Grant's replacem,ent, Shaka Smart, led the Rams to five straight NCAA Tournaments, including a trip to the Final Four in 2011. 

Wade led the Rams to two NCAA Tournaments in his two seasons and is now headed to LSU to attempt to revitalize the program.