Category Archives: Auburn

WATCH: Chuma Okeke, Auburn Forward, Collapses & Grabs Knee

Category : Auburn , NCAA Tournament , Sports

As Auburn was streaking to a double-digit lead over No. 1 seed North Carolina in the Midwest Regional semifinals, Tigers forward Chuma Okeke collapsed to the ground after going up for a rebound. The crowd went silent as he writhed on the floor in pain.

Amazing sportsmanship from UNC's players to greet Chuma Okeke as he made his way off the court pic.twitter.com/cAMeBjZsAK
— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) March 30, 2019

He leads all scorers with 20 points on 8-of-11 shooting. He also notched a double-double by grabbing 11 rebounds. The No. 5 seeded Tigers led by 13 at the time, and pulled away for a 97-80 victory. He walked off the court with the assistance of medical personnel.
Sideline reporter Jamie Erdahl stated that Okeke will not return to the Sweet 16 matchup, as he suffered a “severe knee injury.”
Jared Harper said to Erdahl afterward that the team was motivated to win for Okeke. Pearl teared up in the ensuing interview, saying that he was going to hug his forward in the locker room. He acknowledged that he feels Okeke is seriously hurt.

@AuburnMBB defeats @UNC_Basketball 97-80 to advance to the #Elite8
Jared Harper and Coach Bruce Pearl speak with @jamieerdahl about the team’s victory pic.twitter.com/b9RCmCLHyS
— March Madness TV (@MarchMadnessTV) March 30, 2019

Auburn will face the winner of Houston-Kentucky in the other Midwest semifinal, which will take place later tonight in Kansas City.
While the Tigers are in their first Elite 8 since 1986, Chuma’s absence could be a major blow to their Final Four chances. The 6-foot-8, 230-pounder has moonlighted at center, averaging 11.8 points and 6.7 rebounds while out of position.
He’s versatile slasher with a wide frame, while also presenting 3-point touch (38 percent) and defensive acumen (1.2 block and 1.8 steals per contest). This level of production has led some to believe he’s a potential NBA Draft pick this summer.
Bryan Kalbrosky of Hoops Hype features him at No. 37 overall on his aggregate mock draft.
NBA Draft Net sends Okeke to the Brooklyn Nets with the No. 27 pick. He’s listed as a small/power forward hybrid and would pair well with the recently-acquired Jarrett Allen.
NBA Scouting Live projects him as a second-rounder in its scouting report.
Chuma Okeke is an athletic, combination forward that has a variety of skills that could prove to be useful to a team at the next level. He can shoot and score the basketball, and he can also finish plays above the rim. Right now, he may be a second round prospect for the upcoming draft.
He has not declared one way or the other about leaving early for the NBA. Time will tell if this injury is severe enough to affect his decision.


Bruce Pearl Salary: How Much Does the Auburn Coach Make?

While Bruce Pearl has helped two SEC programs turn become relevant in the South and nationally. As head coach at Tennessee from 2005-11, his final record was 145-61 in Knoxville, with his best year coming in 2007-08 season. During that stretch, the Volunteers went 31-5 and lost in the Sweet 16 of the tournament to the Louisville Cardinals.
Back in March of 2011, his tenure with the school came to a conclusion, as the higher-ups decided to part ways due to NCAA violations. As ESPN previously revealed, Tennessee fired Pearl, even though they had hoped to keep him through the off-court issues hanging over the program’s head.
Tennessee athletic director Mike Hamilton said in a statement released late Monday that school officials decided to dismiss Pearl, who has been charged by the NCAA with unethical conduct, after learning of additional violations committed on Sept. 14, 2010, and in March 2011.
Since taking over for Auburn in 2014, he has turned around the Tigers’ fortunes. He guided them to the NCAA Tournament last year, and got to the program’s first Sweet 16 since 2003. Auburn is currently playing North Carolina in the Midwest Regional in Kansas City.
Despite the violations, the on-court results speak for themself. What kind of money is he making at Auburn?
According to USA Today Sports, he earns $2.6 million a year with his current contract. It ranks No. 38 out of all coaches in the country, just behind Kansas State’s Bruce Weber and Providence’s Ed Cooley. The Wildcats bowed out last weekend in the Round of 64, while Providence missed the dance altogether.
Compared to his SEC peers, Pearl is right in the middle of earners. He trails Kentucky’s John Calipari ($9.7 million), Tennessee’s Rick Barnes ($3.25 million), Georgia’s Tom Crean ($3.2 million), Alabama’s Avery Johnson ($3.06 million), South Carolina’s Frank Martin ($2.95 million), Missouri’s Cuonzo Martin ($2.8 million) and White ($2.61 million).
Crean, Johnson and both Martins failed to make the tournament this season.
The highest-paid coach is Calipari, followed by Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski at over $7 million. Michigan State’s Tom Izzo is third at $4.157 million.