#24 Arizona 78 Illinois 72 OT, in Chicago - Another fine coaching job by Bruce Weber. I have to admit, I Where is the talent on the Illini squad? They blew a 14 point second half lead and watched as Jordan Hill dominated them in the post for a career high 23 and 14. Arizona didn't even take their first lead of the game until the last 20 seconds of regulation. This may have been a December game, but it was very important for Illinois tournament resume, which will be lacking in quality wins with the lack of depth in the Big Ten.
Dayton 70 #11 Louisville 65 - The banged up Cardinals took it on the chin once again to their second quality opponent. This time, it was on their home floor. The Lousiville guards had no answer for Brian Roberts, who torched them for 28. Rick Pitino was so distraught by his backcourt performance, he had starters Edgar Sosa and Jerry Smith on the bench for the final five minutes of a close game. Meanwhile Dayton is now 7-1.
#7 Duke 95 Michigan 67 - This was the blowout we fully expected it to be. Five Blue Devils were in double figures including 18 off the bench from Freshman Taylor King and 17 from fellow Frosh Nolan Smith. Duke buried 11 threes in a game that wasn't even this close. John Beilin's got his hands full with this pathetic collection of talent Tommy Amaker left him.
#3 Kansas 84 Depaul 66 - This was the finest performance the Jayhawks have put on thus far. With Sherron Collins giving the crowd a surprise early return, the KU big men decided it was going to be there day. Darrell Arthur, Darnell Jackson, and Sasha Kaun put on a dunk contest and Depaul had no shot. Kaun had his best game in two years, going 6-7 from the field for 15 points. PG Russell Robinson had nine assists and just one turnover.
#9 Pittsburgh 75 Washington 74 - If the Huskies miss the NCAA tournament, they will look back to this game. Trailing most of the game, Pittsburgh came storming back behind the stellar play of PG Levance Fields who led the Panthers with 20. Dejuan Blair came to play with 16 and 14. The game seemed at hand until Huskies G Ryan Appleby hit a three with six seconds left to cut a five point deficit to two. Fields split a pair and PG Justin Dentmon drove coast to coast and hit a floater as time expired. The refs reviewed the play and it was called no good. Correctly the ball was still in Dentmon's hand as the clock hit all zeros. "It was frustrating not knowing," Dentmon said. "It is really hard because you have it and then they take it away from you and it feels like everything just went bad."
#15 Indiana 70 Kentucky 51 - No Eric Gordon, no Armon Bassett, no problem. When you have a talent such as Jordan Crawford backing them up, you are in good hands. Crawford was spectacular, outplaying his brother Joe and scoring 20 points while playing 39 of the 40 minutes. DJ White controlled the paint with 16 and 13. Kentucky was led by Frosh Patrick Patterson's 15. I'll say this, this Kentucky team is devoid of real talent outside of Patterson. It could be another long season in Lexington.
#10 Michigan State 68 #22 BYU 61 - Maybe the best win of the day was by the Spartans. After traiking by 10 at the half, Izzo's boys came storming back behind stars Drew Neitzel (15) and Raymar Morgan (17). The unheralded MSU frontcourt outrebounded BYU 34-22 which was the stat of the game, since the Spartans shot just 3-14 from deep.
#8 UCLA 75 Davidson 63 - Trailing at one point by 18, the Bruins staged an epic comeback and beat a game Davidson club by 12. Luc Richard Mbah a Moute was the star for the Bruins with 21, but all five starters scored in double figures. They needed to step up as the bench only scored three. It was another near miss for Davidson, who now has losses to UNC, Duke, and UCLA.
Wright State 43 #13 Butler 42 - Raidernation and MTAC friend Jon Ramey are smiling this morning as Wright State pulled off a stunner in Dayton. In the end the Butler guards failed to show up for the second straight game. AJ Graves was 2-11 while Mike Green was 3-11. That won't win you many games when you are a completely perimeter oriented team.
#15 Marquette 81 #23 Wisconsin 76 - This year's version of the battle of Wisconsin goes to the Golden Eagles. Dominic James and Jerel McNeil were too much for the Badger guards to handle. They combined for 34, nine assists, and 10 boards.
Stephen F. Austin 66 Oklahoma 62 - That's right, you read this score correctly. The Southland conference scores another monster upset for the little guys, in Norman no less. The Lumberjacks are 7-1 and a quality mid-major squad, but no way they should be going into Norman and knocking off the Sooners. OU shot a miserable 2-14 from deep and trailed the entire game. Not what Jeff Capel was looking for out of his young squad.
#5 Texas 80 Rice 54 - We are liking this Longhorns team more and more. DJ Augustine, AJ Abrams, and Damion James all scored 18 in this laugher. James also grabbed a career high 17 boards. Big Dexter Pittman added a solid seven and five rebounds off the bench. The Horns improved to 9-0. Who else can't wait for Kansas' February visit to Austin?