Baylor 44 (6) Kansas 61
Boy was I wrong. I expected Kansas to win, but I didn't expect it to be a blow out. But even the score did not turn out what you expected. If you were Scott Drew, and you were told, Kansas will only score 61 points, shoot 37% from the field and a ridiculous 21% from the arc, you would bet another 2 game suspension that you would beat them by 10. You wouldn't count on Ben McLemore to go off and your team to have 9 first half turnovers. Baylor was hungover from a this weekend, crawling to the winning finish line, getting drug by your defense. These two teams are good, real good, but this game was not what you would expect from a Big 12 game.
Wisconsin 64 (1) Indiana 59
This was a sad one, mainly because I have picked Indiana to go far this year. But like I have said, not until the second week of February, will the teams really settle and the rankings make sense. That being said, Wisconsin played a hell of a game. They achieved a feat that no other team has done since 1923, winning their fifth consecutive game in Bloomington. Going there and winning by 5 is not easy. Assembly Hall is not an easy place to play, with the feel of thousands of MidWesterners screaming hateful words in your direction. I don't feel like Indiana was ever really their normal selves. Especially when Berggren drove the lane dunking over two Hoosiers to start the game. Tough to come back from that.
They out rebounded Wisconsin (35 to 26) but that was because they missed a lot of shots, going 20-54 from the field and 3-12 from the arc. Give the Badgers credit. However, if Victor (Home Depot) Oladipo, second best name in college basketball, will play like he can, this team will not lose many more.
Texas Tech 63 Oklahoma 81
OU was BAD for a few years, and then they went out and and got Lon Kruger and have turned things around. This will be a good year for the Sooners, who look to take hold of second place in the Big 12. Watch Buddy Hield this year. He’s a freshman from the Bahamas. And if we have learned anything from the Bahamas, it’s that they crank out amazing basketball players. They routed Tech, who on the other hand is a bad team this year. They have lost their last three, never really in the game. It will be a tough year.
(10) Florida 68 Texas A&M 47
Not much to write about this game. A&M game off a big win against Kentucky, but could not pull the same sort of magic against a good Florida team. A&M’s basketball team will have two problems this year:
1. Fans forget they have a basketball program2. The Aggies only led once in the game, and once the Gators went on their run, they never looked back. The SEC is a weird conference when it comes to basketball. They have history and talent, but sometimes can’t win big games, and A&M is probably going to be on the losing end of more games then they want. Although the Aggies are 9-3 against SEC teams in the past 10 years, so I could be totally wrong. A crazy stat I found, and one that proves my first point above is this:
Come on Aggies, you HAVE to do better than that.
If you want to check out some highlights, look here:http://espn.go.com/video/clip?categoryId=2459792&id=8855723
(5) Michigan 83 (9) Minnesota 75
Michigan is good, real good. They are my favorite team to watch this year, because their offense is quick, strong, athletic, and can score a lot of point. It will be interesting to see what happens with them in the Big 10 this year. I thought Minnesota might actually win this, only because of Tubby Smith (if you have watched him since he was in Tulsa) and the way his defenses play. They are always strong, lock down defenses, and at the beginning of the game, that is they way they played. Michigan is just way to good, and after coming off a lose, they were not going to let another team do the same to them. Great game, great plays.
(16) Kansas State 67 TCU 54
Whenever you shoot 50% from the arc, you are probably going to win your game. Well, leave it up to K State to do just that. They went into Fort Worth and took care of TCU pretty easy. Other than TCU matching the Wildcats points in the second half, it was not much of a game. McGruder for the Kansas State is more fun to watch then the DirectTV genie, and that’s saying something. If he can stay healthy, they will easily clinch the number two spot in the Big 12 going into February, and could possibly give Kansas a run for their money.
NC State 50 Maryland 51
I wrote last week that this was going to be a game to watch. NC State beat Duke in an incredible game and then had to go to Maryland and play a real good team. In a defensice game, Maryland won with a buzzer beater put back by Alex Len. I thought Maryland would win by more, but NC State fought hard, playing with only 7 guys and all of their points came from their starters, who played for an average of 36 minutes, while their bench only played for 15 and 3 minutes. Tough to win when your bench does not help out. This game was intense with a lot of great plays, check out the highlights here:http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=espn:8851635
Maryland is a team to watch out for. Mark Turgeon is a great coach with a lot of experience under his belt. You may remember when Gillespie bolted for Kentucky (and all the A&M fans got mad for them ‘stealing’ their coach), they went out and rightfully acquired Turgeon from Wichita State. He helped both of those programs tremendously and will keep Maryland on their path.
West Virginia 67 Iowa State 69
You won’t really find many highlights of this game, but it was actually a pretty good game. Iowa State is having a good year, beating some tough opponents, and taking some better opponents down to the wire. West Virginia played a great game, but when you miss 12 of your 3’s to start the game, it is hard to come back, unless of course Iowa State doesn’t play defense the second half and you make 8 of your next 12.
Iowa State 83 at TCU - 75
Iowa State is a good team. TCU is a bad team. This game (and others TCU will play all season) will continue to show it. The Cyclones came out and led by 10 at half, and just coasted to a victory. TCU has lost their last 5 by an average of 14 points, and the rest of their schedule does not favor them.
West Virginia 52 at Purdue 79
West Virginia’s shoot woes continued, only shooting 16% from the arc, while letting Purdue shoot 50% from the field and 72% from the arc. I am actually surprised the Boilermakers didn’t score a lot more in this game. With Purdue having 4 guys in double digits and West Virginia only have one (Harris with 10 points), it is real hard to come out on top.
(12)Creighton 64 at Wichita St 67
I gave a lot of credit to Ethan Wragge of Creighton last week, and still think he is good, but he did not show up in this game, missing a game tying shot to end the game. Wichita State was knocked out the the top 25 last week, and this win could put them back in the rankings. You just never know with College Basketball.
(4) Syracuse 70 (1) Louisville 68
KFC Yum Center, yep, best name of an arena? (and by best I mean worse). Well another number 1 goes down as Syracuse goes into the YUMBO center and knocks off Louisville 2. They are another team that is proving it is best not to be ranked #1 yet. Louisville had a chance to tie the game, if a bad pass would have not happened. This was a great game to watch, and it you did not watch it, you need to watch it online. This is why College basketball is so good. There were a lot of runs in this game, which is fun to watch. If you watch Louisville, and one of there downfalls could be the fact that Russ Smith will score A LOT of their points. They need to spread the ball around if they want to compete in the long run. But nit picking these two teams is next to impossible.
(8)Gonzaga 63 at (13)Butler 64
This game was everything that it was hyped up to be. You have a team that is on fire, Gonzaga, going into a team, who is playing lights out, Butler. The score was back and forth, and it took a stolen inbound pass and a shot from the foul line to put Butler ahead of Gonzaga. I have liked Gonzaga since the beginning of the year, but I also knew that this would be their toughest challenge. But don’t call it an upset. If you look at the rankings, only 5 spots separated them. Their records are similar, Butler had won 12 straight, this is a great team beating another great team. And for the love of everything holy, why do you rush the court.
(4)Kansas 64 at Texas 59
Texas went into the half, up by 2 and looking like they may pull out their first win in conference play. But they could not stop Kansas and the play of McLemore. Texas has not has this bad of a play since 1999, Rick Barnes first season. Rick, how do you feel about this: ''Pretty old,'' Barnes said. ''We do a lot of things well. But we don't win because we don't do it when the game is on the line.'' That sums up their season, they get close but can not finish the games they need to. Now, it doesn’t help playing the number 4 team in the country and playing one of the best players. Texas is almost there, but I don’t think this is there season, especially in a league with a lot of good teams and you have to pull off a win in those close games.
Texas Tech 45 at Oklahoma St 79
Yes I am an Okie State homer, no, I will not only talk about the Cowboys. But they have potential to be one of the best teams in the Big 12. They are quick and athletic. The problem is that they live and die by the 3 so much, and their defense gets exploited a lot. But if you have not watched Marcus Smart play, you are missing out. This guy may be freshmen of the year, if he plays like he could. He does not make many mistakes and allows his team to shine more then him. Mark Few, coach of Gonzaga, said of Smart, “He’s one of the all-time greats. I love that guy. He’s a warrior. He’s a winner. He’s the umpteenth level. I’ll go into battle with that guy any time.” Not too shabby. Watch Phil Forte for the Pokes as well, they compare him to Keiton Page of last year, but he is much better. And Markel Brown is finally showing Cowboy fans what he can do.
Hardin-Simmons 38 at Baylor 107
Yeah, this isn’t an oversight on my side. This was actually a game. This was actually the score. That is all.
Oklahoma 60 at (16) Kansas St 69
I have talked about McGruder before, and I will talk about him again. He does so many things right, and does very little wrong. He is a smart player, and does not mind getting everyone on the court involved. I think K State will only go as far as he will take them. By the way, he played 40 minutes in this game. That is the whole game if you are keeping score. OU was outmatched from the beginning in this game. They trailed by 8 points going into half, and could not climb out of the hole.