January 05, 2012
1. Georgetown's history of second-half skids suggests we'd be wise to be cautious before fully believing in this team, but there's no denying that the Hoyas have been impressive in exceeding expectations thus far. They held Marquette without a field goal for seven minutes in the second half on Wednesday night, enabling the Hoyas to rally from a 17-point second-half deficit and eke out a 73-70 victory on a Hollis Thompson three-pointer.
2. Any questions about the validity of Georgia State's torrid start vanished Wednesday when the Panthers upset CAA contender VCU 55-53 to notch their 11th win in a row. First-year coach Ron Hunter inherited virtually the same roster that went 12-19 under Rod Barnes last season, yet he has instilled confidence in them that they can achieve the first winning season since the program joined the CAA six years ago.
3. The return of Yancy Gates didn't disrupt the success Cincinnati enjoyed with a smaller lineup in his absence. Gates entered to a nice ovation and played 21 minutes off the bench, scoring six points, grabbing eight rebounds and shoring up the Bearcats' interior defense in a comfortable 71-55 victory over visiting Notre Dame. "I like the offense the way it's spread out," Gates told the Cincinnati Enquirer. "The guards are attacking and the defense has to watch everybody. It's way better."
4. In addition to Xavier's continuing struggles and Temple's upset victory over Duke, there were two other noteworthy results in the Atlantic 10 on Wednesday night. St. Joseph's rallied from a 16-point second-half deficit at Duquesne to win 84-82 in overtime and Dayton beat visiting Saint Louis 79-72 in overtime despite trailing for all but the first and last minute of regulation.
5. Maybe Iowa isn't as awful as it looked earlier this season in losses to Campbell, Clemson and Northern Iowa. The Hawkeyes have followed up a near-upset of Purdue with two more impressive showing, upsetting Wisconsin at the Kohl Center on Saturday and edging host Minnesota 64-62 on Wednesday night. It's Iowa's first back-to-back Big Ten road wins in five seasons.
Michigan State athletics provides insight into how Tom Izzo interacts with his team with this video of his postgame locker room speech after Tuesday night's overtime win at Wisconsin. Said an enthusiastic Izzo: ""We got a, what, 14 game winning streak? I just think we're average, so we have a long way to go."
"I have never in 27 years -- including coaching 13-year-olds -- been a part of a game where our team got its tail whipped in the physical part of the game the way we did today." -- Kansas State coach Frank Martin after rival Kansas stomped his Wildcats on Wednesday night 67-49. (ESPN.com)
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