Briefs: Pulley league begins, football receives another commitment and more

The Howard Pulley summer basketball league began Monday, football received a verbal commitment, and more.

John Hageman

Summer league starts, White rumors swirling The Howard Pulley Basketball League Pro-am Summer league began Monday in St. Paul , where the Gophers basketball team will be well represented. Ralph Sampson III , who is in Georgia for the summer, is the only Gopher not participating. But former Gophers recruit and Mr. Basketball Minnesota winner Royce White will play in the league despite rumors from multiple media outlets that he is being recruited by Kentucky. White left Minnesota in February after legal issues . White, who scored 22 points Monday night , would not confirm the rumors, but told the Pioneer Press that his chances of returning to the Gophers are âÄúslim and none.âÄù Fellow Minnesota recruit Trevor Mbakwe will also participate this summer, although he has yet to hear on his eligibility with Minnesota. Mbakwe is awaiting his trial on felony assault charges set for July 26. Bauducco commits to Gophers Quinn Bauducco, a three-star football recruit from Moorpark, Calif., verbally committed to the Gophers on Monday for the 2011 season. The 6-foot-3-inch, 225-pound linebacker had 80 tackles and four sacks his junior season. According to ESPN.com, he was also considering San Diego State, Nevada, Utah and Idaho. Rivals.com ranked Bauducco as the No. 31 inside linebacker in the nation for the class of 2011. Six Gophers named to U-22 Team USA Hockey announced Thursday that six Minnesota womenâÄôs hockey players were named to the U.S. Under-22 Team, more than any other school. The GophersâÄô two leading scorers last season, Emily West and Sarah Erickson, along with defenders Megan Bozek and Anne Schleper, made the team. Jen Schoullis, who missed all of last season with a shoulder injury, and incoming freshman Amanda Kessel will also represent the U.S. Kessel, who was a teammate of Schoullis at Shattuck-St. MaryâÄôs, played on the U.S. Under-18 Team in 2009, and was named the tournamentâÄôs most valuable forward. Schleper led Western Collegiate Hockey Association defenders with 32 points, and was named WCHA defenseman of the year as well as a first team All-American. As a freshman last season, Bozek was named to the WCHA All-Rookie Team and led the Gophers with 20 power-play points. The team will take the ice against Canada on August 18-21 in Toronto after participating in the WomenâÄôs National Festival in Lake Placid, N.Y., earlier in the week. WomenâÄôs track finishes in 14th in Program of the Year standings The Gophers womenâÄôs track and cross country teams were named the nationâÄôs 14th best program by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association. The association sponsors the Terry Crawford Program of the Year Award, in which the three Gophers womenâÄôs programs âÄî indoor and outdoor track and cross country âÄî combined to finish 14th overall. Minnesota finished 10th in the nation in cross country, 39th in indoor track and 31st in outdoor track. Only two other Big Ten schools âÄî Penn State and Ohio State âÄî scored in all three NCAA meets in 2009-10. Nebraska, which will join the Big Ten in July 2011, finished 19th in the womenâÄôs outdoor track standings. Texas A&M finished first in both the menâÄôs and womenâÄôs outdoor track standings. Oregon won the Program of the Year award, finishing ninth in cross country, first in indoor track and field and second in outdoor track and field.