One of my boyhood heroes passed away this weekend; Sal Bando, the captain and 3B for the great Oakland A’s teams of the early 70’s, passed away from cancer at age 78.
Bando hit 242 home runs, knocked in 1,031 runs, made four All-Star teams; he later became general manager of the Milwaukee Brewers.
Bando was the heart and soul of those great A’s teams. RIP, sir.
Chiefs 27, Jaguars 20
— Mahomes sprained his ankle in 1st half; backup QB Henne led a TD drive. Mahomes played the second half.
— Jaguars turned ball over twice in fourth quarter.
— Jacksonville covered six of its last seven games.
— As a head coach, Pederson is 7-0 ATS as an underdog in playoff games.
— Chiefs’ first three drives: 35 plays, 224 yards, 17 points.
— Mahomes was 22-30/195 passing, with 2 TD passes
— Chiefs lost field position battle in nine of last 13 games.
— Chiefs are in the AFC Championship game for the fifth year in a row.
Eagles 38, Giants 7
— In three meetings TY, Eagles outscored Giants 61-7 in first half.
— Giants in first half: 19 plays, 64 yards, no points.
— Eagles in first half: 42 plays, 260 yards, 28 points.
— Total yardage for game: Eagles 416, Giants 227
— Philly is 8-2 SU/7-3 ATS at home this season.
— Eagles were 10-14 on third down, Giants 5-13.
— Under Sirianni, Eagles are 10-3 ATS as a home favorite.
— Philadelphia will host the NFC Championship game next Sunday.
In college basketball………
There were 13 teams that lost Saturday who at one time led by 10+ points.
— Big X
TCU 83, Kansas 60— TCU snaps Jayhawks’ 16-game home winning streak.
Baylor 62, Oklahoma 60— Sooners shot 58% inside arc but were only 3-4 on foul line for the entire game. Baylor has won four in a row, is now 14-5, 4-3 in conference.
Oklahoma State 61, Iowa State 59— Cyclones led 28-12 early on, but wound up shooting 2-9 on arc, 7-12 on foul line.
Kansas State is 6-1 in Big X, leading three teams by a game. This is the best league in the country this season.
Duke 68, Miami 66— Miami was 12-42 (28.6%) inside the arc; they slip to 6-3 in the ACC.
Clemson 51, Virginia Tech 50– Clemson outscored the Hokies 5-1 over final 1:28 to stay in first place at 8-1. ACC teams are shooting 42.4% inside the arc vs Clemson.
Clemson is 8-1, Virginia is 7-2; five other teams are 6-3 in the ACC race.
Bottom four in the ACC: Virginia Tech, Georgia Tech, Notre Dame, Louisville are a combined 3-31 in conference games.
Arizona 58, UCLA 52— Bruins’ 14-game win streak gets snapped; they shot 31.3% from the floor in this game. Arizona only played seven guys the whole game.
USC 77, Arizona State 69— Sun Devils got swept at home by the LA schools this week; Bobby Hurley tried pretty hard to get thrown out late in this game, but the refs wouldn’t give him the satisfaction. Trojans were 14-14 on the foul line.
UCLA is 8-1 in conference; they still lead the league by two games, with five teams tied for second in the loss column. UCLA/Arizona are locks for the NCAA’s; everyone else is on the bubble, at best.
Oregon State made the Elite 8 two years ago; since then, they’re 10-40 overall, 2-27 in Pac-12 games.
Alabama 85, Missouri 64— Crimson Tide has won eight games in a row, all by 11+ points; they start two freshman and a sophomore.
If the NCAA Tournament started tomorrow, I’d pick Alabama, UCLA to be in the Final Four. Not sure who else I’d have in there, but I think those are the two best teams.
Alabama is 7-0 in conference; Auburn, Tennessee, Texas A&M all have one loss.
LSU was 11-1 in pre-conference; they’re 1-6 in SEC games.
— Big West
Cal-Davis 65, Cal Poly 63— Aggies outscored Cal Poly 15-0 over final 4:29 of this game, to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. Cal-Davis has won five of its last six games.
Long Beach State 112, Cal-San Diego 110, 3 OT’s— Marcus Tsohonis scored 46 points for Long Beach; they outscored the Tritons 5-0 over last 0:13 of the third OT. Two guys on Long Beach played 54:00 out of a possible 55:00.
This is a one-bid league; the conference tournament should be great fun.
— Missouri Valley
Belmont 78, Bradley 76— Belmont outscored the Braves 11-3 over final 4:30; they swept Bradley this year, winning the two games by a combined five points.
Southern Illinois 61, Missouri 57— Salukis never trailed, are now 8-2 and tied for first place in the Valley. Salukis had four guys score in double figures, but they scored 11-10-10-10 points- they start four seniors.
Belmont/SIU are tied for first place; Northern Iowa is 7-3, after going 4-6 in pre-conference games. This is another one-bid league whose conference tournament will be must-watch TV.
Charleston 87, Northeastern 61— Cougars have won 20 games in a row; they lost to North Carolina on November 11. They’re far and away the best team in this league but my question is this: if they get upset in the CAA tournament, say they finish 31-2, would they get an at-large spot in the NCAA Tournament?
The CAA has fallen off the cliff; they were the #14 league last year, but after football-related shuffling of schools, now they’re the #24 league. That doesn’t bode well for an at-large spot, so Charleston will have a lot of pressure on them in early March.
Akron 63, Western Michigan 55— Zips have won four in row, eight of last ten games; they’re in second place in MAC, trailing Kent State by a game.
Kent State is 16-3; they’ve lost to Charleston by 2, Houston by 5, Gonzaga by 7, but they don’t have any real impressive wins.
Ball State/Toledo could make the semi-finals of the MAC tournament very interesting.
San Francisco 82, BYU 74— Dons made 12-29 on the arc, never trailed. BYU has lost four of its last six games; they move to the Big X soon— they’re not going to do well there.
Gonzaga 99, Pacific 90— Zags are 17-4, 6-1 in the WCC, but they’re not a super team the way they’ve been the last few years. Only two of their six WCC wins were by double figures.
Gonzaga/Saint Mary’s are locks for NCAA’s; can anyone upset them in the WCC tournament?