The American Athletic Conference held its men’s basketball media day this morning; Cincinnati was picked by the beat writers as the favorites to win the conference, edging out UConn by a single first-place vote. Also, Kevin Ollie—former NBA player, current Huskies head coach, 2014 NCAA champion—had a microphone attached to his head with scotch tape.
Ollie and standout guard Rodney Purvis both sported the clear adhesive and spent five minutes talking with the hosts as if they didn’t have tape peeling off their necks. They weren’t the only AAC coaches or players that got the Scotch treatment, as Tulane head coach Mike Dunleavy and Malik Morgan also needed a couple of the not-quite invisible strips. At least one sports information director gets bonus points for helping their coach rock the tape subtly—Tulsa head coach Frank Haith had his mic cleverly situated on the right side of his face, hiding any tape from the camera.
As far as TV deals are concerned, the AAC is the most profitable of the Group of Five schools—The Virginia Pilot reported in June that the conference led the way, having secured an annual $2 million payout for each member school. Although Houston and UConn were both recently denied their shot at Power Five money, the conference or the schools should have enough in the budget to splurge on fitted mics.