- Kyle Ringo at The Dagger10 hrs ago
After sitting out postseason play a year ago as part of APR penalties and losing this season's regular season finale to Louisiville by 33 points, No. 21 Connecticut was eager to get tournament play started Thursday night against No. 19 Memphis.
The Huskies trounced the Tigers 72-53 on their home floor at FedExForum in Memphis in the American Athletic Conference tournament. It is the third time this season UConn has beaten Memphis. The most recent game between the teams in February was decided in overtime, making Thursday's outcome even more surprising.
Memphis isn't exactly going into the NCAA tournament next week with any confidence. It has alternated wins and losses in its past six games over a span of three weeks.
- Kyle Ringo at The Dagger14 hrs ago
There was more than one question about Kansas before the Big 12 Conference tournament tipped off this week in Kansas City and the Jayhawks took a step toward answering some of them Thursday by surviving Oklahoma State in a 77-70 overtime quarterfinal game.
Some want to know if the Jayhawks can become the first team to earn a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament with more than seven losses. To do so, they would likely have to win the Big 12 tournament because they're already sitting on eight losses this season and would definitely eliminate themselves from a No. 1 seed with a ninth setback.
Others wanted to know if the Jayhawks would be motivated to win the conference tournament considering they're so firmly locked into the NCAA bracket. They obviously weren't lacking enthusiasm Thursday, playing hard throughout the game.
- Sam Cooper at The Dagger14 hrs ago
Upset-minded Wyoming and Josh Adams gave UNLV all it could handle in the quarterfinals of the Mountain West tournament Thursday.
Adams, a 6-foot-2 sophomore guard, poured in 24 points to lead all scorers. 18 of Adams’ 24 points came in the first half including this thunderous dunk over UNLV big man Khem Birch.
Adams took a handoff at the top of the key off a ball screen and exploded down the right side of the paint toward the rim where Birch was waiting. Adams elevated off of two feet, then double-clutched before throwing it down emphatically with two hands.
Despite Adams’ efforts, the Cowboys could not pull out the victory, falling 71-67. Bryce Dejean-Jones (22 points) and Roscoe Smith (18 points) combined for 40 points off the bench for the Rebels.
UNLV will move on to square off with MWC No. 1 seed San Diego State in the semifinals Friday night.
- Kyle Ringo at The Dagger16 hrs ago
Buzzer beaters and overtime games generally get all the attention in March because they thrill college basketball fans, but every now and then there are jaw-dropping results of another kind that just can't be ignored.
Defending national champion Louisville provided one example Thursday in its opening game in the American Athletic Conference tournament routing Rutgers 92-31. Yes folks, that's a 61-point margin of victory in a conference game.
Louisville led 58-16 at halftime and could have gone scoreless in the entire second half and still won by 28 points. The Courier-Journal reported it was the most lopsided conference game in the nation this season.
The betting line on the game beforehand had Louisville favored by 18.5 points. The Cardinals covered the sprea by more than 40.
- Jeff Eisenberg at The Dagger16 hrs ago
The only people in Winston-Salem who will be disappointed if Wake Forest fires Jeff Bzdelik are those who sell ad space on billboards.
Bzdelik's rocky four-year tenure has probably single-handledly paid for some of their kids' college education.
Wake Forest fans erected yet another billboard to show their displeasure with Bzdelik in advance of Thursday's 84-55 loss to fifth-seeded Pittsburgh on day two of the ACC tournament. This one read "We're Waiting ... Fire Jeff Bzdelik" with the hashtags "#buzzout" and "#wellmanout" written beneath.
It may not be a long wait for Wake Forest fans considering the way Bzdelik's fourth season finished.
This was the year Wake Forest athletic director Ron Wellman believed Bzdelik would break through after a dismal first three seasons in which he rebuilt the character of the program but went 34-60 overall and 11-42 in conference play. Instead the Demon Deacons dropped 10 of their last 13 games to finish 17-16 overall and tied for third-to-last in the 15-team ACC.
- Christopher Wilson at The Dagger17 hrs ago
NEW YORK — Leaning on Josh Fortune’s 24 points, a tremendous effort on the offensive boards and some clutch free throw shooting late, Providence survived a nearly epic collapse against fellow bubble team St. John’s in the Big East Tournament quarterfinals.
The Friars appeared to be running away with the game when a LaDontae Henton layup put them up 17 with 6:24 to go, but on a day that had already seen top-seeded Villanova eliminated, the drama in the Garden was just getting started. Orlando Sanchez and JaKarr Sampson spearheaded a Red Storm run – mixing a frantic press on defense with a dedication to attacking the paint on offense - that made it a 69-68 game with a little over a minute remaining.
- Kyle Ringo at The Dagger18 hrs ago
Florida State kept its slim NCAA tournament hopes alive Thursday with a stellar bit of teamwork in setting up a game-winning dunk in the final second by center Boris Bojanovsky to beat Maryland in an ACC tournament game .
The Seminoles beat Maryland 67-65 when Bojanovsky's dunk went through the basket with .4 seconds remaining. It came off a nice pass from senior Okaro White.
FSU earned its 19th win of the season with 12 losses to at least put itself in the conversation among other bubble teams. Florida State has just one win over a ranked team this season and that win over then-No. 22 UMass came back in December. Its best Conference victories are probably the two over the Terrapins.
- Sam Cooper at The Dagger19 hrs ago
Coming into the season, expectations for Kentucky were sky-high. With five 5-star recruits joining the fray along with Alex Poythress and Willie Cauley-Stein, Wildcats fans were predicting an undefeated season and National Championship before the season even began.
Unfortunately for coach John Calipari and company, things didn’t go as planned. The Wildcats lost their third game of the season to Michigan State – their first of nine losses on the year.
Despite the losses, the Wildcats are pretty much a lock to receive an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament, and one UK fan is still confident that the Wildcats will come out on top.
How confident? Check this out:
- Christopher Wilson at The Dagger20 hrs ago
NEW YORK — After Sterling Gibbs’ buzzer-beating jumper knocked top-seeded Villanova out of the Big East Tournament, Selection Committee Chair Ron Wellman may have to turn to a Craiglist posting to give away the final number one seed in the NCAA Tournament:
AVAILABLE TO GOOD HOME: Mint number one seed. Guaranteed to play a 16 seed to start tournament. Free trip to Madison Square Garden with two wins.
Gibbs’ jumper – seemingly a tribute to Kemba Walker’s winner against top-seeded Pitt in the 2011 edition of this game - capped off a wild 64-63 opener to the Big East quarterfinals. The Pirates blew a double-digit second half lead to the third-ranked team in the country only to rally back with two go-ahead jumpers in the final minute. Freshman guard Jaren Sina drained a three with 17.2 seconds remaining to give Seton Hall a one-point lead, but Villanova’s Darrun Hilliard – who made nearly every big shot for the Wildcats down the stretch – responded with a jumper that seemed like it was going to save his team’s chances at their first Big East Tournament title since 1995 and a number one seed on Selection Sunday.
- Kyle Ringo at The Dagger20 hrs ago
The NCAA provided a first look at its 2014 Final Four court design Thursday through its March Madness Twitter account and there is a noticeable difference from previous years.
The name of the host city has been a prominent part of the center-court logo in previous recent Final Fours hosted by Atlanta and New Orleans.
This year's center court logo features a small tip of the cap to North Texas. The Final Four will be played April 5-7 in AT&T Stadium in Arlington,Texas this year. It's home to the Dallas Cowboys.
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