West Coast: Loyola Marymount 68, San Francisco 65 (story) - It does indeed rain in Southern California - man, it pours. While the water came down outside Hank's House, two up-and-coming WCC teams played soggy ball in the first conference tilt for both. Both teams traded baskets and shot poorly, and 6'8" Australian Matt Knight blocked what would have been the winning basket as time ran out. It was the first time new Don coach (and former savior of the Louisiana-Lafayette program) had lost a conference opener.
One of today's games, a Cornell-Dayton non-conference contest to be held at the beloved home of the 65-vs.-64 Tournament play-in game, might not tip-off as planned.
If the water table at UD Arena holds steady, the University of Dayton probably will play its men's basketball game with Cornell University tonight. On Friday afternoon, however, there was enough uncertainty about whether the ground water would rise to the level of the UD Arena floor that UD officials said they would not determine until noon today whether the game would be played on schedule.Games! Of! The! Day!
Almost too many to mention, as all conferences except the Ivy League are now well underway. Oral Roberts
is at Valparaiso
in a matchup between the once and future kings of the Mid-Continent Conference (2:00 PM ET, free webcast
returns to action for the first time since their shocker over Pittsburgh
, drawing Holy Cross
in a Patriot League curtain-raiser (2:00 PM ET, free webcast
) - if you're in the Lewisburg area, admission is free.
John Feinstein, patron saint of the Patriot, pens a column for the Washington Post
about that Bucknell victory that reads just like a passage from The Last Amateurs
Often, in guarantee games, especially those that involve a little school that is better than people think, the visiting team will jump to a lead. The home team will get a tongue-lashing from its coach, wake up and eventually take control. Bucknell led by as many as 12 in the first half before taking a nine-point lead into halftime. The Bucknell players understand the game well enough to know what was coming.
With the start of PL season I'll probably have an excuse to slip my single John Feinstein story in sometime soon, but it'll require some bandwidth since it's one of those Uncle Charlie-style yarns with a lot of interior monologues. John's "Top Five Mid-Majors" list this week is headed by the Keyser Soze-like usual suspect:
1. G****** (11-2) When you've already beaten Georgia Tech, Oklahoma State and Washington, can you still be considered a mid-major?
Nope, that's why we call them "Unnamed Major Program From the Northwest" (or UMPFN
) around here.
The heartwarming Texas A&M-Corpus Christi
story (soon to be a major motion picture?) goes nationwide, as an AP feature/primer released on the wires today will squeeze itself into countless small-town newspapers trying to fill out their sports pages.
"If you're interested in us and UCLA, or us and Texas, or us and whoever, we may not get you, but if we get you on campus, you'll think about it," [coach Ronnie] Arrow said. "We're getting noticed now. We feel like that we're definitely on our way up. It is a unique situation."
Coach Arrow still hasn't returned my calls for an interview, but that's probably because he's heard that I'm trying to coach TAMCC to Tournament glory in ESPN College Hoops 2K5's Legacy Mode. I'm not angling for your job, Coach - I have lousy hand-eye coordination, anyhow.
Provisional Division I school California-Davis
won't be a member of the Big West until 2007. But they already have the league logo prominently emblazoned on their home floor, and will play every team in the conference except Idaho
this season. The Sacramento Bee
looks at the Ags' 2005 Big West Tour.
Sam Mustari of the Greeley Tribune examines one of the other provisionals, Northern Colorado
. Their 3-13 record is unimpressive until you consider that they have the fourth-toughest schedule in the nation.
Community college "basketball factories" have had a bad week in the P.R. department
. So in the interest of equal time, here's the story of the Cecil Community College Seahawks
, via Delaware Online
. CCC is along my regular I-95 route near the Maryland-Delaware border, and has reached the top of juco's Division II with hard work, discipline and dedication to academics - coach Bill Lewit routinely redshirts players after their freshman year so they can work on their studies.