Pac-12 Pick’Em: Week Three

Posted by Connor Pelton on December 13th, 2012

We are two weeks into our Pac-12 Pick’Em and things are beginning to heat up. Adam and Parker stole the show in our second week of picks, with each of them correctly picking nine of the 12 contests. Parker currently sits atop our leaderboard at 20-5 overall. I was the only one to miss UCLA’s win in Houston on Saturday afternoon, and Drew was the only one to pick Illinois’ upset of Gonzaga in Spokane. Unfortunately for Mr. Murawa, losses by Washington, USC, Fresno State, and California have put him in last place, all by himself. So now, we enter week three. Florida’s visit to Arizona and Kansas State meeting Gonzaga in Seattle headline the list as our games of the week.

Game Connor (19-6) Drew (18-7) Parker (20-5) Adam (19-6)
Jackson State at Washington State WSU WSU WSU WSU
Washington at Seattle University Washington Washington Washington Washington
Dartmouth at Arizona State Arizona State Arizona State Arizona State Arizona State
Nebraska at Oregon Oregon Oregon Oregon Oregon
UC Davis at Stanford Stanford Stanford Stanford Stanford
Jackson State at Washington Washington Washington Washington Washington
Florida at Arizona UA 80-75 UF 72-67 UA 76-74 UA 77-68
Gonzaga vs Kansas State GU 81-77 GU 61-50 GU 72-65 GU 88-72
Creighton at California California California California Creighton
Chicago State at Oregon State Oregon State Oregon State Oregon State Oregon State


Only a couple of differences in opinion this week. Drew was the only one to take the visiting Gators against Arizona, while Adam thinks #16 Creighton will knock off California in Berkeley. Adam also predicted the largest score differential in each highlighted game, taking the Wildcats to win by nine, and the Zags to win by 16.

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Pac-12 Power Rankings: Week Ten

Posted by Connor Pelton on January 18th, 2012

Here’s a look at the power rankings that Drew and I have compiled after the tenth week of Pac-12 games. Here we go!

1. Stanford, 15-3 (5-1): Going into the week, most Cardinal fans would have said they expected a big win over Utah and a grind it out, nail biting victory against Colorado. Instead, the opposite happened. But the Cardinal still went 2-0, and they are still on top of our power rankings after ten weeks of basketball. While the Cardinal have already been on a road trip to face the Oregon schools, they will be tested even more this week when they visit Pullman and Seattle. Up Next: 1.19 @ Washington State

2. California, 15-4 (5-1): Unlike their rival from across the bay, the Golden Bears barely got past Colorado on Thursday. After a terrible first half of shooting, Cal found itself down seven heading into the locker rooms. But when the two teams came out to begin the second half, it was like they switched identities. The Golden Bears would outscore Colorado by 14 in the second half en route to an ugly 57-50 win. Cal wrapped up the week with a 36-point win over the Utes. Up Next: 1.19 @ Washington

California guard Allen Crabbe leads the Golden Bears with 15.7 PPG. (credit: Ben Margot)

3. Oregon, 13-5 (4-2): The Ducks are the talk of the conference after sweeping the Arizona schools on the road this week. Thursday night they got a closer than comfort nine-point win over Arizona State, but the real damage was done on Saturday. Oregon went into the McKale Center and dominated Arizona for 35 minutes, and despite a late flurry of points from the Wildcats, held on for a thrilling 59-57 win. Up Next: 1.19 vs. USC

4. Washington, 11-6 (4-1): Two less-than-mediocre in-state rivals filled Washington’s slate this week. On Tuesday night Washington hosted Seattle University, and the Redhawks hung around all night before eventually falling, 91-83. On Sunday it was Washington State who came calling for the first Apple Cup of the season. The Cougars gave it all they had, but in the end the mixture of Tony Wroten, Jr., Terrence Ross, and Darnell Gant was too much for Washington State. The final was 75-65, bringing the UW winning streak up to three. Up Next: 1.19 vs. California

5. Arizona, 12-6 (3-2): The Wildcats ended up splitting on the week, but it was in uninspiring fashion. First there was the near-brawl, overtime win against Oregon State, and then there was Saturday’s meltdown against the Ducks. The Wildcats need to win beat both Utah and Colorado this week to keep their small at-large hopes alive. Up Next: 1.19 @ Utah

6. Colorado, 11-6 (3-2): Definitely a letdown week for Colorado after starting conference play 3-0. On Thursday they were able to play California tough, but Stanford totally dismantled the Buffaloes with an 84-64 thrashing Saturday afternoon. Up Next: 1.19 vs. Arizona State Read the rest of this entry »

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Into the Lion’s Den: It’s Awesome When ACC Teams Play in Strange, Hostile Arenas

Posted by KCarpenter on October 10th, 2011

Despite a minor kerfuffle over Andy Glockner dinging Duke‘s schedule for not playing “true” road games, I think that we can all agree that non-conference road games are a thing of beauty. While old conference rivalries are their own distinct joy, and an on-going series between non-conference foes can be reliably entertaining (Kentucky vs. North Carolina, for example), there is something special when a team goes somewhere it has never been before and takes on the challenge of playing in hostile territory. And while prime time showdowns between two big schools in power conferences are entertaining, it is almost always better when Goliath comes to visit David.

This season, we have more than a few of these lopsided showdowns in the ACC. And, again, apologies to schools who scheduled great games at semi-neutral sites, but we will be focusing on the “true” road games.  Sorry, Duke. It is great that you are playing Temple, but it’s a shame that it is at the Wells Fargo center. Sorry, Maryland. It’s even cooler that you are taking on Temple at the Palestra, but for now, let us give credit to teams that are willing to go head first into the belly of the (mid-to-low-major) beast.

Coming Off A NCAA Tournament Appearance, UNC Asheville Will Take On North Carolina at Home

After last season’s atrocious showing, a loss to just about anyone would not be too surprising for Wake Forest. That said, the showdown with neighboring High Point University in High Point could spell trouble if the Panthers smell weakness and decide to go for the weakened Deacons’ collective jugular. Fellow ACC basement-dweller Georgia Tech has scheduled a whole host of road games on hostile courts. While they should be able to take on the not-so-terrifying lineup of Tulane, Savannah State, and Fordham, a loss to any one of these teams could put an end to any modicum of momentum Georgia Tech might hope to carry into the conference season. The Citadel gets points for sheer chutzpah by scheduling Clemson for their home opener, and Clemson gets kudos for accepting. Getting the most dominant basketball school in South Carolina to come to your house to open the season is a bold move. There is no doubt that the Bulldogs and their fans will be amped for this game, and the Citadel will certainly give Clemson their best.

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Morning Five: 06.15.11 Edition

Posted by nvr1983 on June 15th, 2011

  1. Everybody applauded Shaka Smart a few months ago when he turned down the allure of programs with bigger names to stay at VCU with the hopes of building an elite program there. He may do that, but it looks like he will need to do it with a new coaching staff as Radford snapped up VCU assistant Mike Jones and Boston University is apparently strongly considering another VCU assistant, Mike Rhoades. As for Jones, he may have a difficult time cleaning up the mess left by former coach Brad Greenberg, who resigned after numerous irregularities were discovered within the program.
  2. For much of the past year college fans have been inundated by rumors about conference realignment. One move that definitely stayed under our radar was Seattle moving to the WAC. The move that will become official in the 2012-13 academic year will allow the men’s basketball program, coached by former UCLA point guard Cameron Dollar, to compete at the Division 1 level in the first year that they are eligible for the NCAA Tournament. While most fans are not that familiar with the Seattle program, they do have an impressive pedigree if you are willing to go back nearly 50 years. In 1958, led by Elgin Baylor, they made it to the NCAA Championship game before losing to Kentucky, 82-74, and in 1966 they handed Texas Western (yes, the Glory Road team) its only loss of the season in their last game before the NCAA Tournament. The current Seattle team is significantly less talented, but should be aided by the depleted WAC, which will see Boise State, Fresno State, and Nevada leave the conference in the next two seasons.
  3. When Missouri hired Frank Haith after the season ended they were widely ridiculed (ok, we were in that group), but it looks like he is making some significant moves with the addition of Auburn transfer Earnest Ross (13.1 PPG and 6.6 RPG as part of an anemic offense last season) and he is reportedly in the hunt for UConn transfer Jamal Coombs-McDaniel and Pepperdine transfer Keion Bell (yes, the guy who dunked over seven people). If Haith can land that trio, the media ridicule about the hire may soften although questions about his in-game coaching will remain.
  4. When Dwayne Polee announced that he was transferring from St. John’s several weeks ago we speculated that it might have had something to do with the influx of talent that Steve Lavin was bringing to the Red Storm. Yesterday, Polee announced that he was transferring to San Diego State and was applying for a hardship waiver (his mother has a medical condition requiring surgery) that would allow him to play for the Aztecs next year. Although Polee had a disappointing freshman campaign this is a big signing for Steve Fisher and could help the team transition from Kawhi Leonard era to the future if Polee can find his game again now that he is back in California.
  5. Last night we went on a Twitter rant questioning the public’s anger at LeBron James for not fulfilling his potential (or at least what we perceive it to be), but we won’t question the existence of the widespread hatred of James and his current Heat team. Even before the season began, Sports Illustrated released a list of the top 25 most hated teams of all-time and had the Heat, who had yet to play a game together as the 25th most hated team of all-time. We are sure they would move up the list if it was done again today, but we were surprised to see that three college basketball teams–1983-84 Georgetown at #23, 1991-92 Duke at #12, and 1989-90 UNLV at #9–were rated ahead of the Heat. We aren’t exactly sure where the Heat would rank if the list were done again today, but we are guessing that they would rank higher than all three of those teams.
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Morning Five: 02.22.11 Edition

Posted by rtmsf on February 22nd, 2011

  1. Wisconsin’s Keaton Nankivil sat out yesterday’s practice due to the right ankle he injured during the Badgers’ win over Penn State on Sunday. We’ve heard nothing as far as a change in his availability for their game at Michigan tomorrow, so we’ll assume he’s a go. The Wolverines are as bubblified as it gets right now, so if Wisconsin wants to play spoiler they’ll need whatever minutes they can get from the talented senior forward who leads his team in field goal percentage (both overall and three-point) and blocks.
  2. Recidivism! Not a pretty name, is it, T.T.? By now you’ve heard about Bill Self suspending junior guard Tyshawn Taylor for an undisclosed violation of team rules. This is by no means Taylor’s first infraction, as you likely recall, and in this season of “indefinite” suspensions that tend to last two games, we’ll see how long Taylor spends in the doghouse. Self doesn’t strike us as the kind of guy who compromises his sense of justice, even for a team-leading 4.7 assists per game.
  3. Hofstra will retire senior guard Charles’ Jenkins‘ jersey this Saturday, making him only the fifth player to be so honored by the program. Jenkins is fifth in the nation in scoring, putting up 23.3 PPG for the Pride, and leads the CAA in a slew of other statistics as well. He’s currently projected as a second round pick in this summer’s NBA Draft; Sporting News‘ Mike DeCourcy has the full details on why Jenkins’ immortalization in Hofstra Arena is richly deserved.
  4. Seattle University (10-16) is in its third year of Division I and, with five games left, is no longer playing for an NIT bid. They don’t have full NCAA privileges yet, and even if they did, they’re an Independent, so they don’t even have a conference tournament in which they could maybe get hot and steal in order to try to gain entry into The Dance. The Seattle Times’ Jerry Brewer asks what, as SU hosts Washington tonight, are they actually playing for? Sure, obvious things like pride, the completion of a task, and so on. When you read Brewer’s writeup, though, we bet you’ll come away impressed with the vision of head coach Cameron Dollar and senior forward Alex Jones.
  5. Yes, New Yorkers, that’s the Wall Street Journal telling you to break out your Lou Carnasecca sweaters and fall in, because even with a certain NBA trade saga having finally been brought to a merciful close in NYC, the return of St. John’s basketball to national prominence is the true big story in the realm of New York City basketball. The WSJ‘s Jason Gay is downright enthusiastic about his Red Storm, and reminds New Yorkers that, when it comes to college hoops, it’s time “to party like it’s 1985.” Hmm…now where’d we put those Run-D.M.C. and Tears For Fears cassettes…
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