We start with two youtube videos for you. A little memory lane if you will. We title our weekday morning roundup "Coast to Coast like Tyus Edney against Mizzou." For those of you who don't remember the play (you should) here it is for you, from the 1995 NCAA Tournament. Tim Ryan and the late Al McGuire on the call.
The second video I have just unearthed is the last two and a half minutes of the famous Arizona upset of Kansas in the 1997 NCAA Tournament. I haven't watched this game since it happened. I vowed I would never want to relive it. But when I stumbled across parts one and two, I don't think I remembered how greatly KU stormed back. Kansas trailed by 13 points with just under three minutes remaining, yet thanks to full court pressure and unbelievable shooting, they had the lead cut to one with 18 seconds left. Two things stood out for me: 1. Billy Thomas and Ryan Robertson, the backup guards, took the game over and buried every shot they took in the end, while Jacque Vaughn and Paul Pierce didn't take any shots themselves. Pierce cannot be blames. He scored 27 and grabbed 11 boards. 2. CBS' Billy Packer continued to lay into Vaughn for passing the ball up so many times. He was wide open for a three to tie it at the end, and passed it off to Robertson who was covered. Weak. The embedded link was disabled, so the old fashion link will have to suffice:
Kansas vs. Arizona 1997 NCAA Tournament - the last two minutes
N.C. State (11-3) at #1 North Carolina (16-0), Noon ESPN - Does anyone think that UNC will not play much better after being so average the last two games and listening to their coach, Roy Williams question their drive? We know we don't. NC State's J.J. Hickson and Brandon Costner are a great frontcourt duo. Too bad they don't have a Point Guard to go with them. Farnold Degand is out for the year with a torn ACL. North Carolina 78 NC State 58
#12 Vanderbilt (16-0) at Kentucky (6-7), 1:30 PM CBS - Can the Cats actually get their acts together and get a big win at home and end the Vandy unbeaten streak? In a word - No. UK is on a major downward spiral and the name on the front of their jerseys isn't going to save them. Who is going to guard Shan Foster and AJ Ogilvy? Vanderbilt 89 Kentucky 67
#13 Texas (13-2) at Missouri (10-5), 1:45 PM, Full Court - Don't scoff at this one. The Longhorns cannot overlook Mizzou's 40 Minutes of Hell style. Of all teams in the Big 12 not named Kansas, the Tigers can give Texas the most fits because of their style coupled with the lack of depth on the other side. One thing is in Rick Barnes' favor; he has superior talent, especially in the front court with Damion James and Gary Johnson. Texas 89 Missouri 82
Connecticut (11-3) at #8 Georgetown (12-1), 2 PM, ESPN - The young Huskies have exactly zero quality wins despite their gaudy record. PF Jeff Adrian is coming off his best game of the year with 20 and 14 in a win over St. John's. He should get plenty of touches in the post. Meanwhile, this is a battle of the overrated 7-footers Roy Hibbert and Haseem Thabeet. Bottom line, Georgetown has better talent. Georgetown 66 Connecticut 56
Notre Dame (12-2) at #16 Marquette (12-2), 2 PM, Full Court - This is the Irish's shot a proving they are legit. Of their 12 wins, exactly none of them are against ranked opponents. Their two losses are to Baylor and a bad Georgia Tech team. Marquette on the other hand has a show us what you are made of kind of week with the Irish followed by a trip to Louisville. For the Eagles to win this game, PF Lazar Hayward has to continue his stellar play in the post. Marquette 65 Notre Dame 58
#4 Washington State (14-0) at #5 UCLA (15-1), 2:30 - What a joke this game isn't on National TV or even the package. Unless you are local out west, you won't see the biggest game of the Pac-10 season. The game of the week by a mile. No two teams mirror each other like the Cougars and the Bruins. Both want to slow you down and play a half court style. Will UCLA PG Darren Collison be available for this game? Matchup to watch: Wazzu Australian Center Arron Baynes against All-world Bruin Freshman Kevin Love. Can the Cougars really win all three road games at their rival Washington, USC, and now UCLA? UCLA 56 Washington State 54
#24 Arizona (10-5) at Houston (11-2), 3 PM ESPN2 - Another danger spot for the banged up Wildcats. Kevin O’Neill is praying that PG Jerryd Bayless returns for this one. They need him badly. Houston is 9-0 at home, love to get up and down, and are a veteran team, led by Seniors Rob McIver (20 ppg) and Texas transfer Dion Dowell (13 and 8 per game). This looks like a must win for Arizona who have lost two straight and must head to Stanford after this one. We still believe for some reason. Arizona 81 Houston 77
Colorado (8-6) at #10 Texas A&M (14-1) - 4 PM Full Court - Another walkover for the Aggies. Talk to us when they play someone worth talking about.
LSU (7-8) at Mississippi (13-1) - 6 PM Full Court - Lets see how the Rebels respond after their heartbreaking loss at Tennessee. Nothing like John Brady's LSU Tigers to help you recover. Mississippi 80 LSU 65
#2 Memphis (14-0) at Marshall (9-4) - 8 PM - Call us when they play Tennessee.
#9 Tennessee (13-1) at South Carolina (8-7), 8 PM Full Court - Any road game is a test. Can Tennessee come back strong after that emotional win over Ole Miss? Of course they can. South Carolina has a solid backcourt in Zam Frederick and Devon Downey, but there is nothing up front to hang with the Vols Wayne Chism, Brian Williams, and JP Prince. Tennessee 82 South Carolina 71
#6 Michigan State (14-1) at Iowa (7-9) - 8:30 PM - Another in the run of the Michigan State victory tour until late February. After two rather lackluster performances at home, Tom Izzo's club looks to straighten things out on the road. Iowa has struggled all year in Todd Lickliter's system. Raymar Morgan is in the conversation for Big Ten Player of the Year. Michigan State 67 Iowa 52
#3 Kansas (15-0) at Nebraska (11-2) - 9 PM ESPN -At first glance you think this is an easy win for the Jayhawks, but don't be so sure. The Huskers are 9-0 at home including wins over Arizona State and Oregon. Their Center Aleks Maric is a double double machine and it's a nationally televised game in primetime. Kansas returns G Mario Chalmers who sat in the 30 point blowout of Loyola. KU will throw its four big bodies at Maric, but you can bet he will see plenty of Sasha Kaun guarding him. Also expect a lot of full court pressure from the Jayhawks who will try to rattle the young Husker Point Guards Cookie Miller and Jay-R Strowbridge. Last year, KU beat the Huskers by a combined score of 168-105. It will be closer this time around. But not much. Kansas 79 Nebraska 70
Kansas State (10-4) at Oklahoma 6 PM Full Court - If K-State wants to get into the bubble conversation, they need a quality road win like this would be. It won’t be easy as Oklahoma is playing great basketball. Oklahoma has Kansas on Big Monday next. Will they overlook the Wildcats? Oklahoma 70 Kansas State 65