ATB: DeMarcus Cousins Unimpressed With UNCPosted by rtmsf on December 1st, 2009
Gauntlet, Thrown. #4 Kentucky 94, UNC-Asheville 57. DeMarcus Cousins was the star of the game for the Wildcats tonight, as his 6’10, 250-lb frame was simply too large for the much smaller Ashevilleans to handle. Cousins dropped 24/10 in seventeen minutes of action on the hapless Bulldogs, who you may recall lost to Tennesee by about 1000 points two weeks ago. But it was a post-game comment to the media that has people buzzing, as it exhibited a little bit of the youthful naivete/candor that you rarely see in players who have had a little more time in from of media microphones. When asked what he thought of the next team Kentucky will play, the defending national champion North Carolina Tar Heels, Cousins said with a shoulder shrug, “I’m not impressed.” Copy machines immediately went into overdrive in Chapel Hill to place said quote into the lockers of UNC bigs Ed Davis, Deon Thompson, Tyler Zeller, John Henson, and the Wear twins. Roy Williams is a master motivator and you know that he’s going to use that quote to get his players, especially his ridiculously large frontline, to come out spitting fire when they enter Rupp Arena on Saturday afternoon. It’s better for all of us as fans when players and coaches on the elite teams don’t particularly care for each other, so maybe we’ll get something fired back from the other side — perhaps even a tweet or two! Regardless of any future social networking smack, John Wall did not get involved in that, but he did find time to dish out fourteen assists (4 more than UNCA) to go with his twelve points and six steals.
ACC/Big Ten Challenge. Penn State 69, Virginia 66. We wrote up our predictions here earlier today on how we thought this year’s Challenge would go, and so far, so good. We said that there were three either/or games that would probably decide which league won this thing, and the only Monday night game in Charlottesville was one of those. Now if the Big Ten can win one of the remaining two, and have everything else go as reasonably expected, then we’re predicting they will win this Challenge for the first time since its inception eleven years ago. As for this game, it was the Talor Battle show, as the mercurial and clutch guard from PSU scored 28 of his 32 points in the second half to lead his team from a 6-pt halftime deficit to build a commanding 12-pt lead with under four minutes to go. Virginia made a furious rally to cut the lead to one point with 5.7 seconds remaining, but Battle (who else?) stepped to the line and drained both to give Penn State the insurance they needed to win. Tomorrow night there are five games on the Challenge agenda, and the Big Ten already has a huge early advantage by virtue of this win tonight.
Other Games of National Interest. Really light night tonight, which makes sense given almost everyone played (sometimes multiple times) over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend.
- #7 Syracuse 92, Colgate 58. Syracuse ran out to a very quick dominating lead over Colgate, ultimately taking a 31-pt lead into the halftime break. The Orange got 19/9/5 assts from Wesley Johnson and put five players into double figures as they shot a blistering 57% for the game.
- #14 Georgetown 83, Mt. St. Mary’s 62. Do these teams think it’s Big Monday or something? The Hoyas enjoyed a balanced scoring effort tonight behind Greg Monroe’s 19/11, but it was once again the play of Julian Vaughn (14/8/3 assts/3 blks) that turned heads, putting together his second consecutive outstanding game.
- Seton Hall 93, NJIT 53. Did you guys realize that NJIT already has two wins this season? We didn’t either. Granted, one of those Ws was against a St. Joe’s in Brooklyn (not Philly), but they did defeat Wagner. Tonight was no such equivalent night, as Herb Pope dominated NJIT for 22/11/5 blks.
- Memphis 77, Oakland 46. Memphis completely dominated a team that many were picking to make some noise in the Summit League this year behind Elliot Williams 20/3 stls.
- St. Mary’s 78, San Jose State 71. SMC roared back from a 15-pt halftime deficit in their first road game this season by getting 19/8 from guard Mickey McConnell and 12/13/3 from center Omar Samhan.