Big Day, Saturday was. Typing sentences like Yoda, I am.
Let's get to the Results. They were plentiful.
(1) UCLA 65, (6), Texas A&M 62
I have many questions about both of these teams. UCLA is good, obviously. They are returning runners-up to the National Championship, and they only lost Farmar. Affalo is a great player. Texas A&M hasn't beaten a real team all year, and yet find themselves in the top 10. But they gave UCLA all they could handle, in Anaheim, during the Wooden Classic. Do my doubts about both teams can cancelled out, or do they can magnified? I'm uncertain. I'm pretty sure UCLA isn't the best team in the Nation, but they will probably get the #1 Seed in the West come March. They aren't national Champions, though. One guy on offense and 5 guys on defense just isn't enough. Texas A&M, as good as they looked in this game, will be lucky to get a #3 seed. I'm still dubious.
I'm going to take this moment to toot my own horn. In a post I wrote about teams that missed the top 25, I mentioned some teams I thought that would be in the Top 25 before the end of December. That list included Air Force, Michigan State, Gonzaga, and Wichita State. They are all in the Top 25 now. And in this post, I predicted that GA Tech, Creighton, and Kentucky would drop out of the Top 25. So I know what I'm talking about, is what I'm saying.
Back to today's games...
(2) Pittsburgh 70, Buffalo, 67
As crazy as it sounds, this game was closer than the score suggests. Pitt battled back in the final minutes to win this game. You might be thinking, "Against Buffalo? Cripes! How good could Pitt possibly be?" And that would be fair enough, sirrah. However, Buffalo is actually a really, really good team. Pencil them in for an upset in March, when they are seeded 13 or so. Buffalo is a dangerous, dangerous team. And Pitt will probably drop a game or two, and just when people think they aren't as good as #2 (which they are not) they'll go on a winning streak. Essentially, these are going to be teams that no one wants to play in March.
(3) UNC beat High Point. (4) Alabama Beat Alabama State. No links for kicking the crap out of shitty teams. Same goes for (7) Duke beating George Mason, (12) Kansas beating Toledo, (14) Arizona beating San Deigo State, (16)Memphis beating Mississippi, (21)Syracuse beating Colgate, or (22) Okla St. beating Ball State. No links for teams that beat up on pussies.
(5) Ohio State 78, Cleveland State 57
Ohio State is maybe one of the top 3 teams in the country, and playing Cleveland State is just silly. All the same, Greg Oden, Freshman bad ass extraordinaire, didn't miss once from the field. Ohio State looked pretty damn good without this kid, who is the second coming of Patrick Ewing--that is how dominant he'll be in the paint this year. If Ohio State isn't in the Top 3 by the end of the year, I'll eat my hats. All of them. This win won't help them climb up the ladder, but it gives Oden a chance to warm up before Big 10 play. The kid is a fucking monster. There are NBA teams figuring out how many games they have to lose to get a chance at drafting him.
There were other great games today, let's get to them...
(10) Wichita State 83, Wyoming 69
This would be in my crap game list, if Wichita State had started the year as the #10 team. They didn't. They beat lots of good teams, and here they just beat a team they should beat. Don't doubt the power of Wichita State. They are the Real Deal. My favorite named player for the year, P.J. Cousinard, had 12 points.
(11) Wisconsin 70, (17) Marquette 67
I watched a good chunk of this game, and while Barnyard may talk about all the talented big whities Wisconsin has, this game was all about fucking Alando Tucker, and the inability of Marquette to stop him. Alando Tucker was the man, he was clutch, he couldn't miss, all that shit. Great game in the Bradley Center, with Dominic James keeping Marquette in it, with some off-balance, bad idea shots that somehow went in. I'd have to say though the score is closer than the game was. Wisconsin seemed to jump out to a ten point lead whenever it got within 3 points. If the game went on for another 2 minutes, Wisconsin probably would have won by 10. UW is deep, and talented. They might be able to go toe to toe with Ohio State for the Big 10 Title. And that could be the difference between a #1 seed and a #2 seed in the March tourney. And if you think that doesn't matter, than you don't know much the winning percentages of #1 seeds compared to #2 seeds.
Now, to the Upsets
(18) Gonzaga 97, (13) Washington, 77
Remember the name Matt Bouldin. He'll fuck up teams. All by himself with his Whitey Gym Rat skillz. In some polls, Washington was the 8th best team in the country. They got their doors blown out by Gonzaga, which again, wasn't in the Top 25 at the beginning of the year. Gonzaga has now beaten Washington, Texas, and North Carolina. And they are ranked 18.
(15) Butler 64, Indiana State, 72
A team like Butler doesn't get into the top 20 by reputation. They got there by beating good teams. Real good teams. Which may make this loss to Indiana State seem incongruous. But here's the thing about Indiana State. They aren't a bad team. They aren't Top 25. But they may be Top 35. Beating Butler probably won't launch them into the National Consciousness, but they are a team to keep an eye on.
(24) Xavier 67, Creighton, 73
Hey, Xavier, did you enjoy your visit to The Top 25? Week long visit long enough for you? Good. Because Nate Funk of Creighton, and the rest of the Creighton Fighting Blue Jays are going to take your top 25 spot from you, and they probably won't relinquish it. Creighton is a serious team. If they beat Wichita State, don't be surprised. If they beat Duke, don't be surprised. Mike Unprounceable Last Name, the Head Coach at Duke, wishes he had a guard as good as Nate Funk.
(20) Nevada 49, UNLV 58
Nevada is all about Nick Fazekas. He's possibly the best Big Man in the Country (Oden or Hibbert may have something to say about that before the year is over). UNLV counted on such unlikely people as Wink Adams and Lon Kruger's son, Kevin Kruger. Do not expect a great Tarkanianesque run from this bunch of Rebels. This will probably be their biggest win of the season.
how the hell does gonzaga beat who they have and then lose to Washington state and butler? to say they get up for the big boys may be an understatement.
oh, and bouldin can go suck dan dickau's dick.
Zags were handling Wazzu and then they just put a run on them at the end. They couldn;t miss and then Gonzaga got three happy and couldn't hit crap.
As for Butler, we see this every year, a team wins some very big non-conference games and then loses a bunch to teams they supposedly shouldn't. A few years ago I want to say Wichita State or Creighton did this and then missed the tourney entirely. Crazy stuff happens.
PS Udub are pussers for getting out of their series with the Zags.
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