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Morning rumble: "poor" NCAA, Big Ten's media deal, RIP Prince, more

A look at award nods for a men's baseball player, a former women's soccer star and some interesting offseason news in the Big East.

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Non-sports: US President Obama's comments on the British and staying in the European Union drew some ire from Brit conservatives... Jake Arrieta pitches a no-hitter... the US is dropping bombs in Iraq again... Donald Trump's strategist says the stage persona of Trump is just an act, a carnival barker's work... Increase your productivity at work (but keep reading Rumble in the Garden, obviously!)...

First: So the artist we knew as Prince has died.

I could subject you to a long rambling essay (I have seen him live twice, have driven by Paisley Park outside of Minneapolis, and have thrown two Prince-themed parties, for example), but I'll share a few links and say that he was important - one of the most important artists of the 20th century, one of the most important cultural icons of the second half of the 20th century, and was still sneakily making excellent music on his own terms, controlling his own production, distribution and revenues.

He was a visionary; if you like music, take some time and listen to some Prince. His hits will be ubiquitous, but dig a little deeper and listen to his funk, his guitar work, his ballads.

Here are some Prince stories that highlight his quirks; Deadspin has a good ramble and some good links to some amazing Prince musical moments; CNN reviews his final days; Dave Zirin of the Nation's short essay about meeting Prince is... well, what would happen if most of us met him.'s excellent essay. Bomani Jones' great piece. And Prince was actually a very good baller, and those Chapelle skit stories are true.

Here are some non-Prince links.

So all that talk about the NCAA's spending reaching bubble status... that talk seems to pop up whenever the NCAA needs to "cry poor", share revenues, et cetera. Five Thirty Eight on why you shouldn't by the NCAA's argument - or their accounting.

Nationally, Marquette parts ways with Henry Ellenson's brother Wally, who was on scholarship for the year Henry played at Marquette. Henry is expected to be an NBA lottery pick.

Fox Sports and the Big Ten are nearing a massive media rights deal, which would bring many Big Ten games to Fox properties. That might bump some games from Fox Sports 1 to Fox Sports 2 - but it will also bring more eyeballs to Fox Sports, which means the station would remain viable and continue to provide exposure for the Big East.

Two St. John's women's basketball players were picked in the WNBA Draft - shout out to Aliyyah Handford, selected 27th by the Connecticut Sun and Danaejah Grant, selected 31st by the Washington Mystics. Both picks were in the third round in the 12-team draft. SJU-TV interviewed both.

In baseball, Thomas Hackimer has been closing at a high level all season. And his work has earned him a spot on the Midseason Watch List for the Golden Spikes Award, naming the top amateur baseball player in the country. Semifinalists are announced on June 1 and the winner is announced on June 30th.

In women's soccer, Houston Dash forward Rachel Daly, the former St. John's star and English intrernational, was voted Player of the Week in the National Women's Soccer League in her first week in the league. She played 90 minutes, scored a goal, and assisted US WNT star Carli Lloyd's goal as well.