Ivy hoops roundup – NIL gains and Olympic games

The NCAA’s new, long awaited policy of allowing players to use their name, image and likeness for commercial profit extends to the Ivy League, which says it has adjusted rules to allow players to take part in NIL activity.

Former Columbia Lions Tai Bibbs and Randy Brumant quickly signed a deal to advertise for GCDC, a Washington, D.C. grilled cheese bar, per Dafter having transferred from Morningside Heights to Howard to join former Columbia assistant coach Kenny Blakeney.

Gold again

The USA won the 2021 FIBA under-19 men’s World Cup gold medal Sunday by topping France, 83-81, in Latvia, making Yale head coach and U.S. FIBA U19 assistant coach James Jones a member of another gold medal team. Jones previously served as an assistant coach for the USA Basketball AmeriCup Qualifying Team earlier this year, the 2007 USA Men’s Pan American Games Team and as a court coach for the 2006 USA Men’s U18 National Team Trials.


Chipping in 13 points for France against Team USA was incoming Harvard first-year Louis Lesmond, whose three-pointer pulled the French within two with 29 seconds left. France never regained possession, though, and neither team scored again.

Oni and Nigeria send USA to all-time low, head for Lo of their own

The U.S. men’s basketball team was less successful in its first Olympic exhibition game ahead of the Tokyo Olympics, suffering a monumental upset 90-87 loss at the hands of Nigeria in Las Vegas Saturday evening.

Former Yale standout Miye Oni posted six points, three rebounds and two assists for Nigeria in the shocking win.

The Nigerians became the first African team ever to beat the U.S. men, nine years after they lost to the Americans 156-73 during the 2012 London Olympics. It was just the Americans’ third exhibition loss since 1992.

Oni and Nigeria will face former Columbia great Maodo Lo and Group B rival Team Germany on July 28 in the men’s preliminary round.

Lo was key in helping Team Germany earn its place in the Olympics, registering 10 points and give assists in 30 minutes in the squad’s 75-64 win over Brazil in the FIBA Qualifiers championship game in Croatia. The Columbia men’s third all-time leading scorer, Lo pitched in averages of 12.8 points, four assists and 2.5 rebounds per game in Germany’s four contests in the qualifiers.

Nana shows mettle, gets medal

Incoming Brown men’s first-year forward Nana Owusu-Anane has been a regular contributor for Team Canada’s U19 team in the World Cup, posting 10 points and five boards in 20 minutes in Canada’s 81-77 quarterfinal win over Spain before adding six rebounds (but no points) in 26 minutes combined in the team’s 92-86 semifinal loss to Team USA and 101-92 win over Serbia in the third-place game to claim the bronze medal Sunday.

Baron ball abroad

2013-14 Ivy League Player of the Year Alyssa Baron will play for Israel in the FIBA 3×3 Europe Cup 2021 to be held in Paris in September after helping Israel qualify for the championships for only the second time ever.

Baron drilled the game-winning shot from beyond the arc with 17 seconds left to put Israel ahead of Switzerland for good in the Pool B matchup, 20-18, on June 25.

The Penn women’s second all-time leading scorer is a seven-year member of the Elitzur Ramla professional club in Israel and will compete in the three-day championship Sept. 10-12.

Incoming Columbia women

The Columbia women have announced their three-member incoming class:

First-year Noa Comesaña, a 6-foot-1 forward from Vigo, Spain (I.E.S. de Beade) who played in eight Galician Championships and five Spanish Championships, including a third-place finish with the Celta U18 team in 2018, and helped the Spanish national team to a third-place finish in the U16 European Championships in 2019

First-year Kitty Henderson, a 5-foot-9 guard from North Curl Curl, Australia (St. Luke’s Grammar School) who helped take St. Luke’s to the 2015 Australian Schools national title as well as top-three finishes in both 2016 and 2019, attracting national tournament MVP honors in 2019

Junior transfer Jaida Patrick, a 5-foot-10 guard/forward from West Haverstraw, N.Y. (Saddle River Day) who transferred from Duke, where she started all four games in 2020-21, averaging 11.8 points, 5.5 rebounds and four assists before Duke opted out of the remainder of the season due to COVID-19 and averaged six minutes per game in 20 contests as a first-year

Incoming Cornell men

The Cornell men have announced their four-member Class of 2025:

Chris Cain, a 6-foot-8, 220-pound native of Middletown, N.Y. (Pine Bush High School/Cushing Academy) who averaged 23.8 points, 10.9 rebounds and 5.7 blocks per game as a senior captain, becoming a fourth-team all-state selection

Ryan Kiachian, a 6-foot-10, 220-pound native of Los Altos Hill, Calif. (Bellarmine College Preparatory) who was a two-time all-conference selection and ranked among the top five players in Northern California by Prep Hoops

Guy Ragland, Jr., a 6-foot-8, 230-pound native of West Hartford, Conn. (Northwest Catholic High School/St. Thomas More School) who was a McDonald’s All-American nominee as a senior and ranked among the top 20 players in Connecticut by the New England Recruiting Report

Nazir Williams, a 6-foot-3, 190-pound native of Nyack, N.Y. (St. Joseph Regional High School/South Kent School) who was a first-team all-county and first-team All-North Jersey selection as a senior

Incoming Penn men

The Penn men have announced their five-member Class of 2025:

Ed Holland III, a 6-foot-6, 205-pound Philadelphia native (Friends’ Central) who was a senior captain for head coach and former Penn assistant coach Jason Polykoff and Pennsylvania All-State non-PIAA selection as a senior

Gus Larson, a 6-foot-10, 205-pound native of New Canaan, Conn. (Northfield Mount Hermon) who helped Northfield Mount Hermon win the New England Prep School Athletic Conference (NEPSAC) Class AAA championship in 2018-19

Reese McMullen, a 6-foot-3, 180-pound Memphis, Tenn. native (Christian Brothers) who was an all-state and all-metro selection in 2020-21

George Smith, a 6-foot-4, 200-pound native of Salem, N.H. (Brooks School) who led Brooks to the New England Prep School Athletic Conference (NEPSAC) Class B final and lettered three times in hoops at Central Catholic prior to joining Brooks

Nick Spinoso, a 6-foot-9, 240-pound native of Port Washington, N.Y. (Kellenberg Memorial) who averaged 22 points, 16 rebounds and five assists per contest as a senior in 2019-20 while earning all-state and all-Long Island honors

Penn women add a junior transfer

The Penn women have announced that Sydnei Caldwell has joined the program after two seasons at Arizona State. Caldwell is a 5-foot-9 guard from Franklin Lakes, N.J. (Saddle River Day) who played in all 24 games for Arizona State in 2020-21, averaging 4.4 points in 14.4 minutes after averaging 6.7 minutes in 18 games as a rookie in 2019-20

Brown women welcome two additions to coaching staff   

Brown women’s head coach Monique LeBlanc announced two pickups for her coaching staff:

Samantha Brenner, previously Texas Permian Basin (Division II) associate head coach from 2018 to 2021, joins Brown as an assistant coach after helping the team to its most Lone Star Conference wins in program history in 2020-21. Brenner had served as an assistant coach at Franklin Pierce (Division II) from 2016 to 2018 and played for Adelphi from 2014 to 2016 and Vermont from 2012 to 2014.

Harlyn Wyatt joins Brown as an operations coordinator after previously serving as graduate assistant at Nevada from 2019 to 2021, where she helped with video coordination, scouting, recruiting, community service and player development. From 2015 to 2019, Wyatt played at Tulane, where she was a two-year captain.

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