Oral Roberts at IUPUI (Summit League)IUPUI Gym - Indianapolis, IN7:00 PM EST
The sands in the regular-season hourglass are now primarily in the bottom chamber, and so there are plenty of games this weekend full of one-seed implications and general position-jockeying. We're looking forward to see how Siena and Loyola
plays out in the MAAC (we'll be there, incidentally), especially in light of the 29-point pounding LC put on SC back in January. Stephen F. Austin (8-2) and Northwestern State (7-3) go at it
in the Southland, and Ohio and Kent
is super-meaningful in the MAC East. But none of these games has very much on the return matchup of one of the hottest G!O!T!N!'s so far this year
. Highlights are here
, if you didn't get to see it.
The Jaguars of Indiana-Purdue-Indianapolis, those double-trouble Badlands Conference boys, are bringing more PU than IU these days -- a Boilermaker-like win streak without the Hoosier-type recruiting violations. IUPUI has won seven in a row to hit 20, the third time in a decade of D-I life the school's hit that plateau and the first since that NCAA year of 2002-03 (also known on campus as the "pants-ripping belly-flop" year). And their last loss was to these very same Oral Roberts Golden Eagles they will face tomorrow -- that 64-63
thriller at the Mabee Center, which IUPUI would have won if a Gary Patterson
jumper from the top of the key with under 10 seconds left had found the mark. The Jags don't miss many; at 50.9 percent, it's the second-best floor-shooting team in the nation (Boise State). This is also Division I's most efficient offense, scoring 1.151 points scored per possession.
ORU (18-5, 13-0) is two games clear in the BLC loss column and is perfect in calendar year 2008, not losing since a Dec. 29 loss out at longtime play-pals Utah State. All of this earned them a nice home BracketBuster against Creighton, which you'll be able to see at 3 p.m. next Saturday on the Deuce. Oral Roberts fans love to present oral arguments that Robert Jarvis
(12.5 ppg, 86.7 percent FT%, 2.3 apg) is a shoo-in for league POY in his junior season, and the team's defense has been so good, it could shut up any team at this level. As for this matchup, the G'Eagles have also only lost to IUPUI once in the past nine meetings, a stretch that runs back to 2005. Which advantage will win out, history or home court? The conference hangs in the balance.IUPUI 69, ORU 66