ATB: Stephen Curry “Held” ScorelessPosted by rtmsf on November 26th, 2008
Indiana & Kelvin Sanctions (cont.). The big news of the day was of course that Indiana managed to avoid postseason sanctions even though they’ll formally be on probation for the next three seasons. Kelvin Sampson, to his credit, took responsibility for the complete lack of oversight at Indiana ‘while on his watch,’ but at least once Tom Crean gets this program moving in the right direction again, the Hoosiers won’t also be burdened by the crimson scarlet letter of postseason sanctions. Recruits can still be sold on the basis of playing in the postseason at Indiana (although admittedly, that seems farfetched at this point, even within three years). Sampson is now working for the Milwaukee Bucks as an assistant, but he’s now effectively barred from coaching in the NCAA for the next five years as part of a ‘show cause’ restriction (a school would have to show cause for the NCAA to allow it to hire him). Frankly, this seems to us like a penalty that was ‘easy’ for the NCAA to prove, but one that doesn’t necessarily fit when we know of so many other obvious recruiting violations that are simply untidy for prosecution and therefore ignored.
Games of the Night. We had two great games today, for the first time all season.
- Notre Dame 81, Texas 80. This game was nearly everything we expected, and a little more (featured by Justin Mason, below). Notre Dame was led by Luke Harangody’s 29/13 and a 40-footer at the shot clock expiration to what seemed like a solid win with a minute to go, up 79-71. Then the bricks started – Tory Jackson missed two from the line; Zach Hillesland missed two from the line; then Harongody missed both with five seconds left, leaving the door open for Texas to win the game with a two (ND was only up 81-80 at that time). Luckily for Notre Dame, AJ Abrams’ 60-footer at the buzzer was just a bit short (but right online). Good performances abound – ND’s Kyle McAlarney had 19/5 including five threes, and Texas’ was led by AJ Abrams’ 23/5 and Damion James 11/12. Both of these teams are top ten worthy, in our opinion, and we expect Notre Dame to give Carolina all they want tomorrow evening.
- Syracuse 89, Kansas 81 (OT). This was a phenomenal game with enough eye-popping plays to cause Beetlejuice to take notice. Kansas appeared as if they were going to blow the game open in the mid-second half until Jim Boeheim changed his trapping defense up and seemingly stole the ball a dozen straight times for dunks and layups. This 13-2 run led to a tight game down the stretch which was capped by Jonny Flynn’s (25/5 assts) dagger three with 6.4 seconds remaining (see below) to effectively send the game to overtime. Cuse continued its hot shooting in the OT – Andy Rautins and Eric Devendorf combined for six threes in the game – and KU appeared to lose its confidence in the extra period. KU’s Cole Aldrich (15/14) and SU’s Arinze Onuaku (19/12) both showed a strong skill set in the post as each tried to one-up the other during the game. Both of these teams are going to be very good this season.
What’s Wrong with Steph Curry? Davidson 78, Loyola (MD) 48. Nothing, that’s what. As in Steph Curry put up a donut tonight in the points column (get a good look below because we doubt you’ll ever see it again). The word is that Loyola head man Jimmy Patsos strategized to take Curry completely out of the game by double-teaming him on every offensive possession, anywhere he went on the court. Curry, happy to let his teammates play every possession 4-on-3, stood in the corner and watched as they got open look after open look (14 threes went down). Remember, Jimmy Patsos is the coach who decided to leave the bench last week during a game to sit in the stands. We’re starting to seriously worry that he could be losing his mind. We’re not sure if a player averaging over 35ppg has ever had a scoreless game, but jeez, Steph, what happened on the three shots you missed?
Maui Invitational. One really good game, one stinker. UNC vs. Notre Dame tomorrow night should be fantastic, though. We really believe that ND has the chops to pull off the upset.
- UNC 98, Oregon 69. Oregon’s eight freshmen were no match for the older, savvier Heels, who dominated them from the opening tap. Danny Green blew up for 24/8/4 assts, but Psycho-T contributed 16 of his own, mostly from the FT line. UNC rook Ed Davis continues to impress, contributing 11/13, and Oregon’s freshman center Michael Dunigan has an impressive future ahead of him as well, posting 18/7 in a losing effort.
- St. Joseph’s 80, Indiana 54. IU allowed a scorching 59% afternoon from St. Joe’s, including a career-best seven threes from Darrin Govins. This is not a good team.
- Alabama 78, Chaminade 56. Bama enjoyed the automatic win that Chaminade provides behind Senario Hillman’s 22 pts (10-14 shooting).
Dejuan Blair’s Knee. Pittsburgh 74, Belmont 60. The story in this game was who wasn’t on the court moreso than who was. Pitt’s Dejuan Blair was held out of this game due to inflammation in his right knee Saturday, and although his absence showed up in the rebounding battle (Pitt was outrebounded by eleven), forward Sam Young more than picked up his slack with a dominant 33/7 evening. Pitt shot a ridiculous 62% for the game. Blair is expected to be back in Pitt’s next game vs. Texas Tech.
Upset of the Night. Liberty 86, Virginia 82. Wow, now Mr. Falwell’s University is beating Mr. Jefferson’s University. Is this penance for Virginia morphing into a blue state right before our eyes this year? Either way, it’s embarrassing. But you know what’s more embarrassing? Letting another Curry – Seth – end up at Liberty instead of his flagship state school despite knowing that his brother was similarly a late bloomer. Yep, Steph’s Little Bro torched the Hoos for 26 in only the third game of his career. He’s averaging 21/6/4 so far.
News & Notes. It’s an A10 kinda day at RTC.
- Big news for the A10: its conference championship game will be moved to Selection Sunday and shown nationally by CBS. Also, the first round games in their conference tourney will take place at home sites of the higher seeded team before the later rounds reconvene at a centralized neutral site.
- UMass suspended guard Doug Wiggins after he was arrested this week for breaking and entering. Wiggins is sitting this season out as a transfer, and there is no word for how long he will be suspended.
- Xavier at #16 was the only new team to move into this week’s AP Poll.
Other Games of No Consequence.
- Florida 86, Washington 84. The consolation game of the CBE Classic was an entertaining game, with Florida hanging on for dear life at the end even though they led for most of this contest. Nick Calathes had 21/8 assts and Jon Brockman 22/11 in a game where the “foul when up 3” strategy nearly led to a UF loss.
- Arizona 69, Santa Clara 66. Must have been an odd sight watching Arizona and Santa Clara in Athens, Georgia, tonight. Chase Budinger with 22 pts. John Bryant with 24/8 for the losing team.
- NC State 74, Winthrop 48. Is Winthrop over? At 1-4, the Eagles are off to their worst start in ten seasons.
- Mississippi St. 76, St. Bonaventure 71. The human stat-sheet stuffer Jarvis Varnardo had 19/12/6 blks in a tough road environment, holding on for the win. Is MSU the a top-tier team in the SEC?
- Penn St. 85, Penn 73. PSU stayed unbeaten on the young season behind Stanley Pringle’s 25/5/7 assts.
- Villanova 71, Monmouth 48. Casiem Drummond was suspended for one game for disciplinary reasons, but it didn’t make much difference for Nova, who ran out to a 45-13 halftime lead (led by Dante Cunningham’s 19/7) and coasted thereafter.
- Nebraska 71, St. Louis 57. The Huskers shot nearly 60% as they used a late second half run to put this game away.
- Marquette 85, Texas Southern 68. Wesley Matthews and Lazar Hayward had off games shooting (combined 8-23) as Marquette seemingly sleptwalked through this one.
On Tap Wednesday (all times EST):
- St. Joseph’s v. Alabama (ESPN2) – 2pm
- Texas v. Oregon (ESPN2) – 4:30pm
- Butler (-6.5) v. Northwestern – 7pm
- Purdue (-8) v. Boston College (ESPN2) – 7pm (NIT)
- UNC v. Notre Dame (ESPN) – 8pm (Maui Invtl.)
- S. Alabama (-4) v. Arkansas – 9pm
- Oklahoma (-3.5) v. UAB – 9pm (NIT)
- Stanford (-18) v. Air Force – 10:30pm