Northwestern Wins: A College Hoops Blog

An ode to Verne Lundquist’s calls and everything college basketball

November 16: The Day After

Posted by Zach on November 16, 2008

UC Irvine USC Basketball

Top Mid-Majors Battle

Two of the top games Saturday featured potential NCAA Tournament mid-majors duking it out in mid-November- George Mason @ Vermont and San Diego @ UNLV. In the first game, the reloaded Catamounts, led by the three-headed monster of Mike Trimboli, Marques Blakely and Maurice Joseph, fell on two last second Darryl Monroe free throws with 0.7 left in overtime. Monroe was the star for Mason, totaling 19 points and 17 rebounds. Coach Jim Laranaga needs Monroe to mold into a big-time player to win the CAA this season over VCU, Old Dominion and Northeastern. I really wish I could have seen this game- I followed parts on Gamecast and it seemed like an exciting, back and forth duel between two quality opponents in a sold out environment.

The second game I ranked tops on my Games of the Week list, San Diego @ UNLV, was tempered a bit due to the suspensions of two of San Diego’s top guns- Gyno Pomare and Trumaine Johnson. They did a valiant job of battling in a difficult place to play against a potential Top 25 team. In fact, neither team built more than an eight point lead, while there were 17 ties and eight lead changes. Sophomore Rob Jones led the way for SD with 19 points and 10 rebounds, with NCAA Tournament hero Brandon Johnson notching 14. UNLV was slightly better, though, getting 17 from Wink Adams and 13 from freshman Oscar Bellfield. The Rebels won despite shooting 27% from deep. You can’t help but wonder if the result would have been the same had Pomare and Johnson been able to suit up.

North Carolina Debuts Sans Hansbrough

The unanimous preseason #1 Tar Heels debuted yesterday at home against Penn without Player of the Year frontrunner Tyler Hansbrough and fellow starter Marcus Ginyard (Bobby Frasor did play despite spraining his ankle in practice Monday…can’t you do the same Michael Redd? You’re killing my fantasy team, man). Coach Williams probably isn’t overly pleased with the Heels performance Saturday; Penn was down just 10 points with four minutes left, the second half score was 38-38 and UNC failed to go on one of their patented game-ending runs. They’ll need Deon Thompson to step up in Hansbrough’s absence and he did just that, scoring 17 points, while freshmen frontmen Ed Davis finished with a double-double (4-8 FT, 4 TO) and Tyler Zeller totaled a team-high 18 points (just 2 rebounds). UNC faces Kentucky Tuesday with College Gameday in the house. Will Jay Bilas gather a Prop-8 style protest saying the game shouldn’t be played to honor the injured Hansbrough? Tune in to find out.

Other Top 25 Action

  • #11 Gonzaga handled MT St. Billings 83-52 behind Austin Daye’s 15 points and 12 rebounds
  • #12 Memphis throttled Fairfield 90-63 with Tyreke Evans scoring 19 on 7/12 shooting
  • #13 Tennessee dismantled a quality mid-major Chattanooga 114-75. Freshman Bobby Maze with 10 assists debuting at point guard
  • #16 Miami dominated Florida Southern 96-60 behind 18 from Jack McClinton and Dwayne Collins
  • #21 USC avoided the early season upset bug this year, beating UC Irvine 78-55. DeMar DeRozan’s debut went well: 14 points on 6/11

Other Notes

– I wonder what Houston coach Tom Penders said in the locker room with his team losing by 10 to Western Kentucky at home Saturday. Maybe, “do you want our season to end in November???…oh, and I WANT TO KEEP MY JOB!” Whatever he said, it worked. Down 10 to WKU at home, Houston went on a 19-8 run to begin the second half and avoided a 1-2 start to the season.

– Could Tulsa be the team that contends with Memphis in Conference USA? They won a grinder last night at home against a quality Oral Roberts team. 7 foot center Jerome Jordan was contained to just 8 points in 21 minutes, so it looks like they won through 1) Ben Uzoh’s 20 points and 2) defense. What a concept. Anyway, watch out for Tulsa as a sleeper this season.

– Not a great debut for Keno Davis at Providence. After the Northeastern Huskies were thrashed by Manny Harris and Michigan, they turned around and defeated a tougher opponent in Providence. Hot-shooting Matt Janning notched 24 points on 10/14 FG while fellow star Eugene Spates added 17 points for the Huskies. Overall, Northeastern shot 48.1%. Could be another year of defensive inepititude in Providence.

– Worth noting that Illinois State went into Dayton and defeated the preseason #2 in the Horizon- Wright State. Quality win for the Missouri Valley. HL favorite Cleveland State played poorly and were nearly upset at home by Oakland, winning 58-55. Last year’s Cinderella Drake got a dose of reality last night, taking it on the chin to Butler 58-48 at home. It really doesn’t matter how many players Butler loses, they’re always going to play ferocious defense (same with Washington State…MVSU scored 27 on them Saturday in the game). Drake shot just 31.1% from the floor. Also, Milwaukee overcame a 24-point deficit in the World Vision Classic to defeat UC Davis. They get Iowa State today.

UPSET ALERT!!!– #3 in the Pac-10, huh Pat? Jon Brockman scored 30 points on 11/17 FG and grabbed 14 rebounds for the Washington Huskies. Oh, they lost 80-74 to the Portland Pilots.

NW Wins Horse Trailer of the Day– Darryl Monroe, George Mason (19 points, 17 rebounds, 5/10 FG, 9/10 FT, Game winning FT)

Sunday on the Tube (if you want a break from football)

  • Bradley @ Florida- 2:15pm (ESPNU)
  • Long Beach State @ Wisconsin- 4pm (BTN)
  • Winthrop @ South Carolina- 4pm (ESPN FC)
  • Rhode Island @ Duke- 430pm (ESPNU)
  • Idaho @ Michigan State- 6pm (BTN)
  • South Dakota @ Cincinnati- 6pm (SNY, FSNO)
  • LeMoyne @ Syracuse- 630pm (ESPNU)
  • Clemson vs. Temple- 8pm (CSS)
  • UMKC @ Kansas- 830pm (ESPNU)

Sunday’s picks and Games to Watch for next week up later today….

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4 Responses to “November 16: The Day After”

  1. Daniel said

    Great call on Tulsa. I expect them to compete for that second spot in the CUSA and if they can do some damage outside of the conference (they play at OSU, vs. A&M, vs. Oklahoma and vs. BYU), maybe they sneak in with an at-large bid.

    Northeastern surprised me with the win over Providence. I think some people overestimated the Friars in the pre-season. Keno Davis can’t just come in here and change things overnight, and he doesn’t have a whole lot to work with. Just because his roster is experienced, doesn’t mean the players are any good.

    Great road win for Illinois State. The Redbirds are definitely a player in the MVC, and who says they can’t compete with Creighton?

    And, finally, Washington losing on the road to a Portland team that won 9 games last year is about as bad as it gets. It’s one thing if you’re Oregon State and are just trying to win a Pac-10 game, but Washington has some real expectations this year. Quincy Pondexter, supposedly a candidate to break out this year, scored 0 points in 25 minutes. So much for the Huskies.

  2. Zach said

    “Northeastern surprised me with the win over Providence. I think some people overestimated the Friars in the pre-season. Keno Davis can’t just come in here and change things overnight, and he doesn’t have a whole lot to work with. Just because his roster is experienced, doesn’t mean the players are any good.”

    Guilty as charged.

  3. Dave said

    I think the C-USA will be a more deep conference this year. I believe UAB will be better along with Tulsa, and Houston got off to a decent start against WKU. Vaden had a crappy game and the Blazers still won easily.

    Memphis will probably still win the conference, but I don’t expect them to breeze through C-USA play like they did last year.

  4. Patrick said

    Yeah, I really thought Washington would be better this year. Oh well, its still very early, but they definitely need to get things together over there.

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