Xavier 80 Indiana 65 in Chicago - One of my boys is a huge IU fan and went to the game. I received the following email from him last night after 1 AM. oh lord...we have a LONG way to go. our defense, rebounding and overall toughness were clearly lacking in our last two games, both of which were against the best two teams we've played. What happens when we play really good teams? Good thing we've been blowing people out and Eric Gordon is a scoring machine until I pony up $$$ for tickets. Make sure you all see the highlights, IU's Jamarcus Ellis was posterized by C.J. Anderson.
Texas 97 Tennessee 78 in Newark - MTAC's #1 team went down in a heap thanks to a hot shooting Longhorns squad (63%) and and equally cold shooting Vols team (38%). Incredibly, Texas had four players scored 21 or more. DJ Augustine led with 23, Conner Atchley had 22 and 11, AJ Abrams and Justin Mason both had 21. This could be Tennessee's bugaboo all year, if a team can break their press and can score with them, they are in for trouble. Meanwhile, the Big 12 all of a sudden looks like a three team race with Texas and Texas A&M (NIT Champs) looking very strong early.
Texas Tech 73 Gonzaga 63 in Alaska - This is why I love college hoops. Texas Tech can look so bad one week in losing to Sam Houston State, then go to Anchorage and knock off Gonzaga in the Semis of the Great Alaska Shootout with their best player Martin Zeno scoring just two points. Butler 81 Texas Tech 71 - In the finals of the Great Alaska Shootout, The Butler three-point shooting brigade exploded to take the title. They shot a disgusting 16-24 from deep, led by AJ Graves' 6-8. Butler is for real again this year.
North Carolina 73 BYU 63 in Las Vegas - The Heels weathered a tough BYU storm to take the Las Vegas Invitational crown. They did it without PG Ty Lawson who played just two minutes and left with a right ankle injury. It was Tyler Hansbrough's 21 and a big three by Wayne Ellington with 2:06 left that sealed the win for UNC. "I couldn't run on it full speed," Lawson said. "I don't know how long I'm going to be out. We'll check it out when we get back to school." Watch out for BYU. This team can play and 6-11 Trent Plaisted is one of the best players you've never heard of. He had 24 and 17 in the loss.
Michigan State 75 Oakland 71 - Another game by the Spartans that renews my beliefs that they aren't that good. The Spartans play to the level of their competition. So far they've struggled with two D-II teams, losing one of them (Grand Valley State), hung tough with UCLA, then escape against Oakland? Jeckyl and Hyde. Goran Suton had 15 and 20 rebounds to go with Raymar Morgan's 18.
Louisville 64 Old Dominion 53 in Las Vegas - A night after being upset by BYU and failing to deliver on the much anticipated matchup with UNC, the Cards bounced back with a tough 11 point win. Earl Clark had 11 and 15 rebounds, Terrance Williams had 20, and Derrick Caracter supplied 13 off the bench, which Rick Pitino has shortened to three men: Caracter, Edgar Sosa, and Will Scott.