Monday, December 1, 2008

The Day That Was In College Basketball, Sunday November 30th

Some what of a slow day in the College Basketball World today. Louisville losing and a good game and match up between top 25 teams, Tennessee and Gonzaga pretty much highlighted the day. The best game I watched on the day had to been the Wake Forest and Balylor game. Individually Jame Harden of ASU was as impressive as usual and UNC and Georgetown treated their opponents like S&M victims at a German Sex Club. So here's a look at what the Top 25 did today (not including Louisville, I said enough about them in a earlier post) and Big East play......

- In the best match up of the day, Tennessee met Gonzaga in the Old Spice Classic title game at Lake Buena Vista, Fla. A game that went back and forth, the Zags outlasted the Volunteers to stop Bruce Peal from getting his 400th career win, 83-74. Five Zag's players scored in double figures and three of them were not starters. Steven Gray (19 points and pictured) led the charge off the bench as Gonzaga shot 51%, while holding Tennessee to 35.5%. Tennessee did out rebound Gonzaga 44-25, 23 of those on the offensive side and got a great game from Kentucky native Freshman Scotty Hopson, who finished with 16 points and Tyler Smith added 17 points, 5 rebounds, and 5 assists. This was the first of two meeting between these teams. They will meet again on January 7th, when Gonzaga visits Knoxville.

- OK....North Carolina beat UNC Ashville 116-48. What can you say? Tar Heels led 53-19 at the half and all five UNC starters scored more then 13 points, led by Ty Lawson with 22. Oh the way Tyler Hansbrough didn't even play. It didn't matter, North Carolina was over 100 points with five minutes to play in the game. UNC will get a much harder challenge when they meet up with #6 Michigan State on 12/5.

- Georgetown bounced back from their first loss of the season to Tennessee last week with a impressive 75-48 spanking of Maryland. The Hoya's led by as much as 38 at one point. Georgetown held Maryland guard Greivis Vasquez, who entered averaging 20 points, to just two points. Freshman Greg Monroe (pictured) added 12 points and 6 rebounds to help Georgetown improve to 4-1. The Freshman center has scored in double digits in five consecutive games.

- Alex Tyus recorded 25 points and 8 rebounds as #18 Florida beat up UMKC 86-65. The Gators shot better then 50% for the game and despite turning the ball over 22 times, had no problem at anytime with the kangaroos. Florida is now 5-1 and their next four games are against all Florida teams (FAMU, FSU, FGC, and UCF).

- Wichita State led at the half and gave the #6 Michigan State all they wanted but couldn't get it done in the long run as the Spartans fought back to beat the Shockers 65-57. Wichita St. PG Clevin Hannah did all he could in an upset attempt, getting 19 points and dishing out 6 assists with zero turnovers. The Spartans were paced by Marquise Gray (12 points and pictured), Kalin Lucas (10 points), and Durrell Summers (11 points) as Michigan State scored 43 points in the second half after only scoring 22 in the first half. Michigan St. out rebounded WSU 39-22 and are now 4-1 on the season with their next game coming up against #1 UNC on 12/3.

- #7 Texas Longhorns had no trouble with in state opponent Rice, beating the Owls 77-56. Five players scored in double figures for Texas, led by Justin Mason with 14 points. Texas will now wait till December 4th, when the Longhorns will meet UCLA in Austin.

- Probably the best game other then the UT and Gonzaga game (which wasn't on TV for some reason) had to have been a fast up and down track fest of a game between #24 Wake Forest and Baylor. A game Wake Forest would win 87-74. Four different players on each team scored in double figures, while reserve guard Henry Dugat led all scores it 19 points. The game was a lot closer then the score shows, with Wake consonantly keeping Baylor at a five or six point deficit, a deficit the Bears never could overcome. The best part of the game though had to be that the gym they played in had less people in it then a Waggener High School basketball game. So you could hear everything being yelled by both teams. Every time Al-Farouq Aminu of Wake accused Curtis Jurrells (pictured) of traveling, you heard it. Everytime Scott Drew (Baylor Head Coach) warned his team to watch the "stunt" by Wake Forest on free throw misses, you heard it loud and clear. It definitely made the game a lot more entertaining. Both these teams have talent and while I cant see them being contenders, I do see them as a serous threat to anyone they play.

- If you haven't heard or seen Arizona State Sophomore James Harden (pictured) play then you don't know what your missing. UTEP wish's they never had to see him after he dropped a tournament record (76 Classic, yea I know it's no NIT) and career high 40 points to lead the Sun Devels to a 88-58 routing of the UTEP Miners. Harden made 14 of 25 shots, 6 of 7 from 3-point range, and added eight rebounds and four assists for the Sun Devils (5-1). Randy Culpepper scored 24 points for the Miners, who shot a season-low 30.2 percent.

- If I wasn't writing about all Big East teams then I wouldn't have had a reason to talk about the St. Peter's Peacocks and what a depressing world that would be. Thankfully Rutgers felt it best to schedule the powerhouse school. Oh yea....Rutgers won 68-47. Only thing worth saying is that Freshman guard Mike Rosario, who has been lighting everyone up this season was held to single digit scoring (8 points) for the first time this season. He has been averaging 17.8 points and 4 rebounds a game so far.

- When you have a guard that shoots 9 of 17 from behind the arc and puts down 32 points, then it doesn't matter if your missing the reigning conference player of the year, as #8 Notre Dame rolled over Furman 93-61. Kyle McAlarney (pictured) showed why he is considered the best shooter in the country, carving up the Paladins (By the way what the hell is a Paladin??) on 11 of 20 overall shooting. Ryan Ayers added 19 points and Tory Jackson 17 points to help in the win for the Irish.

- The Providence Flyers fell to 4-3 after they lost to St Mary's 81-75 Sunday night. The Gails never really struggled with the Flyers as Patrick Mills scored 24 points and Diamon Simpson had a season-high 18 points. Jonathon Kale led Providence with 20 points and grabbed 10 rebounds, 8 of them offensive.

Games to watch for on Monday December 1st.....

- #19 Wisconsin at Virginia Tech at 7pm ET (ESPN2-TV)
- Delaware State at #2 UCONN at 7:30pm ET (espn360-Internet)
- Kent State at #23 Kansas at 9pm ET (ESPNU-TV)

Other Big East teams in action.....

- Colgate at Syracuse at 7pm ET

- St. Francis (NY) at St. John's at 7:30pm ET

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