Sunday, February 17, 2008

College Basketball 2/18 - Barely Hanging On

Memphis 79, UAB 78
Memphis remained undefeated after hanging on against a scrappy UAB team on the road. Down seven with just over a minute left after missing nine consecutive shots, Antonio Anderson (27 points) and Chris Douglas-Roberts (32 points) both hit three's to cut the lead to one. After Robert Vaden hit one of two free throws, CDR hit a spinning lay-up and drew a foul putting Memphis up one. UAB hit a shot at the other end, but it came after the final buzzer. Memphis played essentially 2-5, with Anderson and CDR accounting for 59 point and 22 of the 28 field goals the Tigers hit.

Jerryd Bayless, Arizona
The freshman Bayless is one of the only reasons Arizona is still in the discussion as a possible NCAA tournament team. Despite the 1-2 week for the Wildcats, Bayless averaged 34.3 ppg, 4 apg, 2 spg while shooting 12-23 from deep. In a 59-54 loss to ASU, Bayless single-handedly kept 'Zona close scoring 39 of their 54 points and making 12 of their 15 field goals. As one of five teams sitting at 6 wins in the Pac-10, Arizona is going to need many more performances like this from Bayless if they have any hope of reaching the NCAA's.

Wake Forest
Kudos to Texas for their wins over Baylor and Kansas, but the Demon Deacons sweep this week of Florida State and Duke not only pushed their record to 6-5 within the league, but gave them a marquee win to put on their tournament resume and propelled them back onto the bubble. Not only was the win against Duke impressive, it was how Wake Forest pulled it out. Duke seemed to take control of the game early in the first half, out scoring Wake 18-8 to take a five point lead. But over the next six minutes, Wake held Duke without a field goal during a 17-2 run to put them up 72-62 with five minutes left. Freshman Jeff Teague (26 pts) and James Johnson (24 pts, 16 rebs) played well beyond their years. The Demon Deacons next two games are at Carolina and home for Maryland, and if they sweep those two they can move into third place in the ACC.

2/18 Xavier @ Rhode Island - The Rams have lost two of their last three to fall to 6-4 in A-10 play. A win will go a long way towards an at-large bid.
PLAYERS TO WATCH: Will Daniels, Rhode Island and Derrick Brown, Xavier - Both of these guys are big, strong, athletic wings (both about 6'8" 230). Daniels has emerged as one of the top players in the A-10 at 18.4ppg and 7rpg, and he will ned a big game against Brown.

2/18 Texas A&M @ Texas - Both teams have top 10 talent. A&M has proven themselves to be consistently inconsistent (last week's loss at OSU), whereas Texas' sweep of Baylor and Kansas has put them back in the Final Four discussion.
PLAYERS TO WATCH: DJ Augustin, Texas - Augustin has struggled mightly with his jumper since the Longhorns last matchup with the Aggies, a 80-63 drubbing in College Station. In his last six (Texas 5-1), he has averaged only 13ppg shooting 25% from the field and 7-33 from deep.

2/19 Purdue @ Indiana - Indiana maybe shorthanded depending on DJ White's health, but a loss to Purdue would put them two games back of the Boilermakers in the loss column with just five games left.
PLAYERS TO WATCH: Robbie Hummel, Purdue and Mike White/DeAndre Thomas, Indiana - Hummel has been one of the least talked about freshman in the nation, but he can play (think Kyle Singler). If DJ White can't go, Thomas and Mike White are going to have to pick up the slack in the paint.

2/21 Pittsburgh @ Notre Dame: With Levance Fields finally getting healthy, Pitt is looking for a late season surge, starting with a win in South Bend, where the streaking Irish haven't lost 34 games.
PLAYERS TO WATCH: DeJuan Blair, Pitt and Luke Harangody, Notre Dame - Maybe the two strongest guys in all of college basketball square off in what should be a great matchup to watch.

2/22 Drake @ Butler: Two of the best mid-major teams get together in the feature Bracket Busters game. If you like three point shooting, watch this game as both of these teams love to jack.
PLAYERS TO WATCH: Josh Young, Drake and Mike Green, Butler - Two very good guards that don't get the exposure they deserve because of where they play.

2/22 Tennessee @ Memphis: Biggest game of the year - No. 1 Memphis vs. No. 2 Tennessee. 'Nuff said.
PLAYERS TO WATCH: Chris Lofton, Tennessee and Chris Douglas-Roberts, Memphis - Two all-american candidates should be coming to play. Look for them to put up some lofty numbers, as both of these teams like to run.

2/24 Xavier @ Dayton - One of the last chances for Dayton to get a big win. The Flyers have been decimated by injury and a major disappointment in league play.
PLAYERS TO WATCH: Brian Roberts, Dayton - One of the best pure scoring guards in the country, Roberts will have to carry this team against the much deeper and more experienced Xavier squad.

No comments: