Jeff Eisenberg

  • Only fair solution to clock debacle is awarding Boise State a win

    Jeff Eisenberg at The Dagger 32 mins ago

    The Mountain West released a video Thursday afternoon that the league hoped would vindicate its officiating crew's disputed call to wipe out Boise State's game-winning 3-pointer the previous night.

    Needless to say, the video did not accomplish what the league thought it would.

    The video showed that the replay technology referees used to wave off James Webb's buzzer beater featured a clock mistakenly operating about twice the speed of the game clock at Moby Arena. That explains why referees determined that it took Webb 1.2 or 1.3 seconds to get his shot off when media outlets timed it at around six or seven tenths of a second.

    The play in question began with eight tenths of a second remaining in the first overtime period of a game Boise State eventually lost to Colorado State in double overtime. Webb caught an inbound pass with his momentum carrying him away from the basket yet banked in a tie-breaking 3-pointer that left his finger tips well before the clock struck triple zeroes, seemingly giving the Broncos a dramatic road victory.

  • From obsession to YouTube star: The life of a professional dunker

    Jeff Eisenberg at Yahoo Sports 9 hrs ago

    Three years into his pursuit of a bachelor's degree in industrial design, Jordan Kilganon approached his mother with an impractical idea.

    He intended to drop out of college and try to support himself dunking for a living.

    Dunking had been an obsession for Kilganon since before he was tall enough to even touch the rim. Whereas most basketball players in his hometown of Sudbury, Ontario, looked up to NBA stars, Kilganon would watch grainy YouTube videos of streetball players performing jaw-dropping dunks and then imitate them on an 8-foot rim in his driveway.

    Kilganon's fixation only increased when he finally dunked on a regulation rim for the first time at age 16. For the next five years, he spent up to three or four hours per day inventing creative new dunks or mastering ones he had watched others do, often remaining at the gym until his forearms were bruised and swollen and his fingertips were cracked and raw.

    The most high-profile member of Team Flight Brothers is Guy Dupuy, an accomplished French-born dunker who in many ways is an outlier in his industry.

  • Disputed call wipes out dramatic Boise State buzzer beater

    Jeff Eisenberg at The Dagger 13 hrs ago

    Another disputed call by a Mountain West officiating crew erased one of this college basketball season's most remarkable buzzer beaters.

    Boise State suffered a 97-93 loss at Colorado State in double overtime on Wednesday night in a game the Broncos thought they had won at the end of the first extra session.

    With the score tied and eight tenths of a second left in the initial overtime, Boise State forward James Webb III caught an inbound pass at the right wing with his momentum taking him away from the basket. Webb then banked in an off-balance 3-pointer that appeared to leave his finger tips before the clock struck triple zeroes, seemingly giving the Broncos a dramatic road victory.

    James Webb III with the banked-in game-winner #mwbb pic.twitter.com/q0g4RqAYsC

    The procedure Hall and his crew followed in nullifying the shot is exactly what referees are supposed to do in that situation. The problem arose from their decree that it took Webb well over a second to release the shot. 

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  • Bubble breakdown: Butler rights itself with crucial road victory

    Jeff Eisenberg at The Dagger 1 day ago

    Ten days after its NCAA tournament hopes appeared to be flickering, Butler has managed to steady itself.

    The Bulldogs clawed back to .500 in Big East play on Wednesday night by capping a three-game win streak with an impressive 81-75 road victory at Seton Hall.

    A nine-point second-half Butler lead had been slashed to two in the final minute when the Bulldogs put the ball in the hands of senior Roosevelt Jones and had him make a play off the dribble. The 6-foot-4 forward bullied his way to the rim and banked in a high arcing runner, giving his team the breathing room it needed to escape with a key road victory.

    Butler improves to 17-7 overall and 6-6 in the Big East with quality wins over Big Ten power Purdue and fellow bubble teams Cincinnati and Seton Hall. All seven of the Bulldogs' losses are against top 50 KenPom opponents with the exception of a damaging road loss at streaky Marquette.

    It's possible Butler would be in the field of 68 if the season ended today, but the Bulldogs' ability to secure a bid next month will depend on how they cope with a challenging finishing stretch.

    WEDNESDAY'S BUBBLE WINNERS:

    WEDNESDAY'S BUBBLE LOSERS:

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  • Bubble breakdown: Creighton restores hope with marquee win

    Jeff Eisenberg at The Dagger 1 day ago

    On the fringes of the bubble picture entering Tuesday night, Creighton landed the marquee win it needed to get back to within striking distance of an NCAA tournament bid.

    Point guard Maurice Watson scored 32 points and dished out five assists to lead the Bluejays to a 70-56 upset of visiting fifth-ranked Xavier.

    Creighton's victory gives it hope of a late surge during the final three weeks of Big East play. The Bluejays are 16-9 overall and 7-5 in the Big East, but their most noteworthy wins prior to Tuesday night came against fellow bubble teams Seton Hall, Butler and Georgetown.

    Now the Bluejays at least have one truly big win on their resume. Xavier (21-3, 9-3) had been just a game behind first-place Villanova in the Big East standings prior to suffering its third conference loss.

    Of Creighton's six remaining Big East games, four are on the road against Xavier, Providence, Butler and Marquette. The Bluejays probably need to win at least two of those and hold serve at home against St. John's and Marquette to have realistic hope entering the Big East tournament.

    TUESDAY'S BUBBLE WINNERS:

    TUESDAY'S BUBBLE LOSERS:

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  • College basketball's All-time Starting Five: Arizona Wildcats

    Jeff Eisenberg at The Dagger 2 days ago

    With March Madness right around the corner, The Dagger is picking an all-time starting five from some of college basketball's most tradition-rich programs.

    Our picks were based on a variety of factors, including stats, tourney success, All-America selections, and of course, our opinions.

    First up: Arizona Wildcats.

    Who we considered from Arizona:

    1. Sean Elliott, F, 1985-89 (19.2 ppg, 6.1 rpg) 2. Damon Stoudamire, G, 1991-95 (15.0 ppg, 5.4 apg) 3. Mike Bibby, G, 1996-98 (15.4 ppg, 5.4 apg) 4. Bob Elliott, F/C, 1973-77 (18.7 ppg, 9.5 rpg) 5. Steve Kerr, G, 1983-88 (11.2 ppg, 3.4 apg) 6. Miles Simon, G, 1994-98 (14.6 ppg, 4.0 apg) 7. Jason Terry, G, 1995-99 (11.3 ppg, 3.8 apg) 8. Jason Gardner, G, 1999-2003 (14.6 ppg, 4.6 apg) 9. Khalid Reeves, G, 1990-94 (15.0 ppg, 3.1 apg) 10. Derrick Williams, F, 2009-11 (17.8 ppg, 7.7 rpg)

    Arizona's All-time Starting Five

    G — Mike Bibby

    G — Damon Stoudamire

    F — Sean Elliott

    F — Derrick Williams

    C — Bob Elliott

    That's the five we're going with. Who would you take?

  • Roy Williams 'doing OK' after vertigo-related collapse

    Jeff Eisenberg at The Dagger 2 days ago

    As he returned to the bench after arguing with a referee during Tuesday night's victory over Boston College, North Carolina coach Roy Williams collapsed to the ground.  

    Williams walked slowly to the locker room with the help of team trainer Doug Halverson and remained there for the final 14 minutes, 35 seconds of the game. He did return to the court after the final buzzer to take part in the postgame handshake line. 

    North Carolina said Tuesday night that Williams' collapse was "vertigo-related" and that he was "doing OK" in the locker room. Williams has suffered from vertigo intermittently throughout his coaching career, but typically he has been able to continue coaching even after a flare-up.

    Williams is expected to travel back to Chapel Hill with the team Tuesday night. He gave a brief statement to reporters in Boston after the game.

    Issue, happens, Roy says, when he jerks his head quickly. Which is what happened tonight.

    "What I want to do is tell you I'm alive, I'm well. I'm kicking. I'm not well, mentally."

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  • Kansas' big win sets up another high-stakes clash with Oklahoma

    Jeff Eisenberg at The Dagger 2 days ago

    Five weeks after their epic triple-overtime classic with the No. 1 ranking on the line, Oklahoma and Kansas will meet again with plenty at stake.

    First place in the Big 12 will be on the line Saturday afternoon in Norman when the third-ranked Sooners get their rematch with the sixth-ranked Jayhawks.

    With Oklahoma edging Texas on Buddy Hield's last-second 3-pointer on Monday night and Kansas fighting its way to a 75-65 victory over West Virginia the following night, the two Big 12 favorites will enter Saturday tied for first place. The winner of Saturday's game will leave in no worse than a first-place tie with West Virginia, while the loser will face an uphill climb over the final three weeks of the regular season.

    The Big 12 title race is especially meaningful because of the quality and depth of the league and the history at stake. Kansas is trying to extend its remarkable run of league titles to 12 in a row, while Oklahoma, West Virginia and the rest of the contenders are eager to end the streak.

    Regardless, the winner of Saturday's Kansas-Oklahoma game will certainly be in excellent position.

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  • Buddy Hield caps late barrage with 3-pointer to beat Texas

    Jeff Eisenberg at The Dagger 2 days ago

    The national player of the year favorite scored the Sooners' final 12 points in their 63-60 victory over Texas including a go-ahead last-second 3-pointer.

    With the score tied and the final seconds melting away, Hield lined up at the free throw line, cut hard to the left wing and received a pass with enough time left to drive or shoot. Hield jab stepped to get Texas guard Kendal Yancy back on his heels, took a sideways dribble toward the corner and then buried the go-ahead 3-pointer to give the Sooners a come-from-behind victory.

    That Oklahoma was in a position to win at the buzzer was largely due to Hield's surge over the previous three-plus minutes.

    He had a huge 3-pointer to cut Texas' lead to three with 3:20 to go. Then came a smooth driving layup and four straight free throws to put Oklahoma ahead by two. Texas star Isaiah Taylor answered with a pair of free throws with 57 seconds left, but Hield delivered the dagger two possessions later.

    Hield finished with a game-high 27 points, all but six of which came after halftime. He was 3-for-14 shooting from the field before his late-game barrage began.

    Regardless, the call went against Texas, setting the stage for Hield.

  • Duke wins crucial opening leg of upcoming four-game gauntlet

    Jeff Eisenberg at The Dagger 3 days ago

    As Grayson Allen missed a 3-pointer late in the second half on Monday night, the most winnable game of Duke's toughest stretch of the season was in jeopardy of slipping away. 

    The Blue Devils had squandered the entirety of a 15-point second-half lead and were tied with Louisville with just over three minutes remaining.

    It was then that Marshall Plumlee outfought several Louisville players for an offensive rebound, drew a foul and sank two free throws to put Duke back in front. The Blue Devils fed off Plumlee's aggressiveness for the rest of the game and pulled away for a crucial 72-65 victory over the 13th-ranked Cardinals.

    Duke's victory was vital because wins should be hard to come by during a two-week stretch in which the Blue Devils (18-6, 7-4) face nothing but the ACC's top three teams. They host No. 7 Virginia on Saturday before visiting No. 9 North Carolina and this same Louisville team next week.

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