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Dick Vitale's roundball chatter

Each week I'll talk about the sport I love, college basketball:

• UCLA finally got its man in Mick Cronin, a tough disciplinarian, tenacious recruiter and smart enough to adjust his style of play to his talent. Look for a run and press team.

• Former Bruins coach Steve Alford landed on his feet, going to Nevada. He takes over from Eric Musselman, who went to Arkansas.

• Chris Mullin left St. John's after four seasons. One name mentioned as a possible replacement was Bobby Hurley, but he accepted a new deal at Arizona State.

• Congrats to Auburn coach Bruce Pearl. After a trip to the Final Four, Pearl got a new five-year deal. Air Force gave Dave Pilipovich a three-year contract extension through the 2022-23 season.

• Two blue bloods got good news with guards returning. Duke's Tre Jones and Kentucky's Ashton Hagans opted to come back for their sophomore seasons.

• The transfer portal is over 700 already and will be much higher when the school year ends. I would like to know with grad transfers, what is the percentage that get their masters in the year they play after transferring?

• Recruiting grad transfers has become bigger than ever. You will see many of the elite conference schools adding them to their rosters. Do you really believe they are making the moves in many cases for the academics?

• Last year, Louisville relied on transfers like Christen Cunningham in the backcourt. Now Chris Mack has added a big-name transfer again as St. Joseph's guard Lamarr Kimble, who averaged 15 points last season, announced that he will play his final season for the Cardinals.

• Alabama coach Nate Oats got several players to return to school, including Kira Lewis Jr., and now he added an important transfer. Guard James Bolden, who was second in scoring for West Virginia last season (12.2-point average), decided he will play for the Tide.

• Tulane has hired former college head coach Ray McCallum as an associate head coach under Ron Hunter. McCallum put together a head-coaching resume includes eight seasons at Detroit, four years at Houston and seven at his alma mater, Ball State.

Camron Justice, who was third in the Horizon League in scoring, has decided to transfer. He averaged 18.6 points and shot 85 percent from the foul line last season.

• Doc Sadler resigned as head coach at Southern Miss. He went on to join Fred Hoiberg's staff at Nebraska. Former Charlotte coach Bobby Lutz also joined the Cornhuskers staff.

• Kansas may be a different team next season. Quentin Grimes, Devon Dotson and Dedric Lawson have declared for the draft. K.J. Lawson and Charlie Moore announced plans to transfer. Bill Self will have a challenge.