1. In addition to being one of college basketball's best coaches, Michigan State's Tom Izzo is also one of the sport's good samaritans. On Monday morning, Izzo drove by a woman whose car was stuck in the snow, so he stopped, helped her shovel it out and then pushed it until it was free again.
2. Jim Boeheim's news conference after Monday's victory at Villanova again featured a memorable rant, though this one was funnier and far less uncomfortable than the previous one. Asked if these sort of tough games help at this stage of the season, Boeheim responded "that's all (bull)" and then launched into a lengthy diatribe defending his position.
3. Unlike other players who insist they never check NCAA tournament projections to see the prognosis for their teams, Kansas State's Jacob Pullen freely admits he's a connoisseur of mock brackets. How high does Pullen think the Wildcats can climb with a strong finish? "It's just about who finishes up strong," Pullen told the Kansas City Star. "We can end up anywhere from a six to a 10."
4. If reserve guard Elijah Johnson performs as well as he did in Monday night's shellacking of Oklahoma State, Kansas probably won't miss suspended guard Tyshawn Taylor all that much. Johnson capitalized on a rare opportunity to play extended minutes, scoring 15 points on 5 of 6 shooting and blanketing Cowboys sharp shooter Keiton Page.
5. Of all the highly touted freshmen who entered the season expected to make an immediate splash, few have been a bigger disappointment than Syracuse's Fab Melo. The Syracuse Post Standard examined Melo's season, highlighting in particular the frustration of being pulled from Saturday's game against Rutgers after just four seconds of playing time.
Proof that sports marketing has progressed immeasurably in three decades: This hokey Old Dominion basketball commercial from the early '80s encouraging fans to buy tickets to check out "The Big Blue Beast." Compare that to this clever YouTube spot Long Beach State produced over the offseason and marvel at how far we've come.
"I think Arizona has a chance. And I'm not just pumping our league. They have a star player in Derrick Williams, they're 11-deep, they shoot the 3 better than anybody in the country top to bottom." -- USC coach Kevin O'Neill when asked if he sees a sleeper team capable of winning the national title. (The Stephen A. Smith Show)
• Michigan State at Minnesota, 9 p.m. ET
- Jacob Pullen
- Jim Boeheim
- Tom Izzo