Archive for the ‘Team News’ Category

Quick Takes: Michigan, SDSU impress; Iowa makes statement

November 29, 2019 Leave a comment

Dave2015On a day when Oregon and Gonzaga needed overtime in the Bahamas, two of the most impressive performances on Thanksgiving arrived via Michigan and San Diego State.  The Wolverines thumped North Carolina (a late UNC push made the final score deceiving), and SDSU throttled Creighton.  If you haven’t yet tuned in the Aztecs, it’s time.  Their earlier road win at BYU is looking better all the time, too.

For what it’s worth … Michigan looks like a major player in the Big Ten race – and San Diego State looks like a strong challenger to Utah State in the Mountain West.

Let’s also not overlook Iowa’s surprising victory over Texas Tech in Las Vegas.  Moving forward, we’ll see whether that result tells us more about the Hawkeyes or the re-tooling Red Raiders.  Read more…

Feast Week: Five teams hoping to fill their resume plates

November 25, 2019 Leave a comment

Dave2015From afternoon tip-offs to food aplenty, Feast Week is one of the best set-ups in college basketball.  The Maui Invitational features Michigan State and Kansas.  The Battle 4 Atlantis has the deepest field, with the likes of North Carolina, Gonzaga, Oregon and Seton Hall in attendance.  And that’s not factoring in solid groups gathered in Orlando, Anaheim and Las Vegas.  It’s a cornucopia of hoops, for sure.

With that as a backdrop, here are five teams hoping to build up resumes in the next seven days …

Dayton – An under-the-radar pick to potentially win the Atlantic 10, the Flyers open with Georgia in Maui. It’s a big opportunity in itself, but even bigger given the route a victory could provide (a matchup with Michigan State, for example).  With Davidson struggling out of the gate, it remains to be seen how many up games await during the A-10 season.  The Flyers would love to exit the islands with a couple of notables on their team sheet. Read more…

Quick Takes: Early concerns for Florida?

November 18, 2019 Leave a comment

Dave2015The Florida Gators are four games into a long season; it’s too early to panic.  Too early to be a little concerned?  Maybe not.

Sunday’s loss at Connecticut positions the Gators at 2-2 heading into the Charleston Classic on Thursday.  Their two wins are against North Florida and Towson, and the Gators needed every minute to escape the Tigers in Gainesville.

Beyond the record, it’s the numbers.  Through four games, Florida has made just 38.4 percent of its field goals and 24.1 percent of its three-point attempts.  They are averaging more turnovers (11.8) per game than assists (10.8).  The Gators look completely out of sync. Read more…

Quick Takes: Vols look good, take down Washington

November 17, 2019 Leave a comment

Dave2015Behind 34 points from Jordan Bowden and Lamonte Turner, Tennessee looked good in its first strong test of the season, taking down Washington in Toronto.  Balanced in their attack, the Volunteers featured four double-digit scorers and collected 19 assists on 25 field goals.

We’ve got a lot of basketball ahead, but Saturday’s win over the Huskies should be a confidence boost for a Vols team that graduated significant scoring in the form of Jordan Bone, Admiral Schofield and Grant Williams.  Looking forward, Tennessee has four more non-conference tests before January: Florida State, Memphis, Cincinnati and Wisconsin.

No major concerns for Washington. The Huskies are young, so some inconsistency is expected.  Grabbing a split between Baylor and Tennessee is solid, and UW’s schedule sets up for a nice run until a December 8 matchup with Gonzaga. Read more…

Quick Takes: Myles Powell impresses, Florida survives

November 15, 2019 Leave a comment

Dave2015In a word, what Myles Powell did Thursday night against Michigan State was … impressive.  Powell poured in 37 points and looked every bit the part of a Player-of-the-Year candidate.  All while nursing a reported high ankle sprain.

Cassius Winston was good, too.  He led the Spartans with 21.  But the story of the night for MSU was the impromptu arrival of freshman Malik Hall, who scored 17 points in 19 minutes while posting a perfect shooting night (7-7 from the field, included 3-3 beyond the arc).  For what it’s worth, the Spartans looked the part of a No. 1 seed by forging a tough road win in a hostile environment against a high-level opponent.  Read more…

Quick Takes: Avoid the risk of overreacting in November

November 13, 2019 Leave a comment

Dave2015The morning after college basketball reminded us – again – that anything is possible, another reminder is waiting: there are risks to overreacting to single-game results, especially in early November.

As Evansville coach Walter McCarty noted last night after his Aces knocked off No. 1-ranked Kentucky at Rupp Arena, “This is a great day to be a Purple Ace.”  And indeed it was. The Aces outplayed UK throughout and deserved to win.

It was also one result. On one night. On a four-month journey.  Assuredly, both coaches know that as well.

Where do the teams go from here?  Ultimately, the answer to that question is what matters most.  When we look back at each team’s resume in March, will Tuesday’s result be a defining moment or a footnote? Read more…

Quick Takes: Keeping an eye on … DePaul?

November 12, 2019 Leave a comment

Dave2015So much for a quiet Monday night in November.

Red-hot DePaul knocked down 61 percent of its field goals, including 11 three-pointers, as the Blue Demons led by 23 at halftime en route to convincing road win at Iowa.  Do a double-take if you want; it’s a reasonable response.

That Big East gauntlet we discussed in the preseason?  Perhaps it’s even deeper than we thought – or at least it could be.  If nothing else, Monday’s result in Iowa City means we have to keep an early eye on, yes, DePaul.

Then there’s Saint Mary’s.  The Gaels, fresh off a victory over Wisconsin, dropped a home game to Winthrop.  If it doesn’t hurt, it certainly stings.  And If you’re keeping a scoreboard, you might drop SMC back to 0-0 in regard to non-conference performance. Read more…