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Archive for December, 2017

Bracket Bits: Top 5 matchups of New Year’s weekend

December 28, 2017 Leave a comment

Dave2015New Year’s weekend is a cornucopia for college sports fans – bowl games on the turf and bracket games on the hardwood.  Whether because of rivalry or projected importance, here are my Top 5 matchups of New Year’s weekend …

Arizona State at Arizona (Saturday, Dec. 30) – The Pac-12 title could end up being decided by these in-state rivals.  ASU has been this season’s biggest surprise. Arizona stumbled out of the gate, but has since righted the ship, winning seven straight against teams that include UNLV, Texas AM, and Alabama.  Thus, the winner gets an early leg-up in what could be a two-horse Pac-12 race.  The return game in Tempe is February 15.  Circle that one, too. Read more…

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Bracket Bits: 12 surprising teams of Christmas

December 26, 2017 Leave a comment

Dave2015As there are traditionally 12 days of Christmas, let’s plug into that theme and launch Bracket Bits.  Our first endeavor?  How about the 12 surprising teams of Christmas? Teams which have brought college hoops a little extra joy this season …

Arizona State – The Sun Devils are a perfect 12-0, own a road win at Kansas, a neutral-court victory over Xavier, a dominate win over San Diego State, and other notable Ws against St. John’s and Kansas State.  Even those of us that thought ASU might contend as a bubble team (they began at No. 80 on the seed list), we never saw this coming.  Extra presents in Tempe!

Oklahoma – The Sooners began preseason play at No. 42 on the seed list.  Behind the incredible Trae Young, those same Sooners are 10-1, a record that features a road win at Wichita State, to go along with victories over USC (when highly ranked), Northwestern, and Oregon.  Young, a freshman, currently leads the NCAA in scoring and assists – a gift that keeps on giving. Read more…

Quick Takes: Tough day for Cats, ‘Canes

December 24, 2017 Leave a comment

Dave2015Kentucky and Miami-FL received a couple of unwelcome presents on Saturday.  UK’s arrived wrapped in UCLA paper; Miami’s covered in a New Mexico State print.  For the Wildcats, who started five freshman against the Bruins, some bumps are expected.  Losing to a re-tooling UCLA outfit qualifies as one of those.  If they bounce back against Louisville on Friday, the Cats will have gone 2-2 against their top non-conference opponents.  And unlike some previous years, plenty of quality wins await in the SEC.  As for the Hurricanes, the loss stings a little more.  First, it means their final game in Honolulu will be against Middle Tennessee instead of USC (even though USC has underachieved).  Second, it leaves us wondering a little about the Canes’ resolve.  Other than an early win at Minnesota (ACC-Big10 Challenge), Miami has played a rather ho-hum schedule.  The loss, perhaps, adds a little urgency to the team’s opening ACC slate, which includes three of five on the road.

Other Christmas Eve Quick Takes … Read more…

Categories: Current Updates

Quick Takes: Bonnies earn resume win

December 23, 2017 Leave a comment

Dave2015St. Bonaventure earned an early Christmas present Friday in the form of a resume-building win at Syracuse.  Projected as one of our final teams “in” to start the season (preseason bracket), the Bonnies opened with a loss to Niagara.  Since, they’ve beaten Maryland in a close game, lost to TCU, avoided further slip-ups, and added yesterday’s road win at the Carrier Dome.  Which puts them back about where they started.  When the Seed List updates again (Christmas Eve morning), St. Bonaventure figures to be in the mix for one of the final bracket spots.

Other Quick Takes from Friday … Read more…

Quick Takes: Wofford stuns No Carolina

December 21, 2017 Leave a comment

Dave2015If you think you have college hoops figured out, think again. Wofford beat North Carolina Wednesday night – in Chapel Hill, at the Dean Dome.  The same Wofford team that lost by 20 at UNC-Asheville last month.  Then again, maybe the Terriers have found a groove; they’ve won five straight, a streak that also includes a win over Georgia Tech.  In other words, Wofford is 2-0 vs. the ACC this season and 4-4 vs. other Division I teams (they’ve played two non-D1 schools).  On a side note, Cameron Johnson debuted for UNC, played 17 minutes and finished with 10 points (seven of those at the FT line). Moving forward, he should give the Heels additional depth.

Other Quick Takes … Read more…

Quick Takes: Injury impacts

December 19, 2017 Leave a comment

Dave2015Injuries are an unfortunate byproduct of sports.  College hoops is no exception.  Injuries take a toll on both the player and his team.  Arizona’s Allonzo Trier left Monday’s game against North Dakota State with what was deemed a bruised knee; let’s hope that’s all it is.  Texas is currently without leading scorer Andrew Jones (wrist); the Longhorns barely escaped Tennessee State.  We also learned that Texas AM will be without guard Admon Gilder for two or three weeks with a knee injury.  These and other situations will be monitored by the Selection Committee.

Additional Quick Takes ... Read more…

Quick Takes: Sooners shock Wichita State

December 17, 2017 Leave a comment

Dave2015Oklahoma freshman guard Trae Young tallied 29 points and 10 assists on the road Saturday at Wichita State – a game the visiting Sooners won 91-83.  The nation’s leading scorer, Young put his stat line together at a place where the Shockers rarely lose (only once last year).  It’s a triumph that figures to pay big dividends down the line.  Non-conference road wins against quality opponents generally rank high on the Selection Committee’s seal of approval.

Elsewhere, we had upsets all along the seed list, and a few near misses – with Xavier escaping East Tennessee State at home in the final seconds.

Here are a few other Quick Takes worth mentioning … Read more…

Categories: Current Updates