13) Indiana State 90, Indiana 69— Sycamores made 17-26 (17-26!!!) behind the arc, getting the Archie Miller era off to a very rough start in Bloomington. Shooting is marketable; if you’re a kid who wants to play ball in college, work your butt off on becoming a great shooter.
12) Texas A&M 88, West Virginia 65— Aggies had their PG and their best player sitting out this game, they trailed by 13 early, but West Virginia struggles to score in half-court offense, and they’re not as deep as the past couple years, so they can’t press as much as they have.
Takeaway from this game; Texas A&M is a top 10 team.
11) Upsets of the Night:
Indiana State (+14.5) 90, Indiana 69
Cal-Riverside (+13.5) 74, California 66
Long Beach State (+13) 83, San Francisco 71
Delaware (+10) 76, Richmond 63
Georgia Southern (+9.5) 85, Wake Forest 83
Niagara (+9) 77, St Bonaventure 75
Miami, OH (+9) 55, Fordham 54
10) Missouri 74, Iowa State 59— Tigers got a huge influx of talent, are an NCAA-caliber team, which has invigorated fan support on campus- this was their first home sellout in four years. Iowa State is in rebuilding mode; they got spanked pretty good here.
Missouri’s highly-touted freshman Michael Porter Jr played only 2 minutes after tweaking a hip injury— he is a kid who is in college a year early, so he can get to the NBA and start earning the big bucks a year earlier than otherwise. Missouri hired his dad as an assistant coach- his brother is a player on the team, too.
9) Charleston 68, Siena 60 OT— Cougars have all five starters back, are expected to win CAA; Saints are in a near total rebuild, so closeness of this game was a surprise.
8) Lamar 74, Tulsa 67— Score one for the Southland Conference; Lamar played only 8 guys, but had 14 offensive boards. AAC is improved with addition of Wichita State; could be a long year for the Golden Hurricane.
7) Kentucky 73, Utah Valley 63— Utah Valley led this game by 9 at the half, but Wildcats didn’t shoot 7-32 in the 2nd half, the way they did in the first half.
WAC’s Wolverines play Duke Saturday afternoon, so a rough 24 hours on the basketball court, an excellent 24 hours for the school’s accountants.
Utah Valley is picked to finish 3rd in an improving WAC- they could be a Cinderella team in March- they’re also the first team in at least 68 years to begin a season with road games at a pair of opponents ranked in the top 5 nationally.
6) Off-court news: BYU’s Nick Emery has withdrawn from school; he will not play for this season, which is VERY bad news for the Cougars.
5) VCU 94, Grambling 65— VCU is a prime mid-major job; this game was the Rams’ 100th home sellout in a row. Coaches still jump from VCU to the bigger money jobs, though not sure its a wise move. Wonder if Shaka Smart regrets leaving VCU to go to Texas?
4) South Carolina 73, Wofford 52— Credit to Frank Martin- he went to Wofford for this game, and Terriers sold their gym out. Not lot of Power 5 teams would take on a true road game like this one, against an in-state upstart.
3) Washington 86, Belmont 82— OVC’s Bruins were up 8 at the half, but Huskies’ freshman Nowell scored 32 points to bail the home team out.
2) Bad Beat of the Night: Marshall 102, Tenn-Martin (+8.5) 91, in OT— Skyhawks were up 15 at halftime, and still didn’t cover- ouch.
Runner-up was Omaha (+8.5) losing 89-80 in OT at Montana State.
1) UCLA 63, Georgia Tech 60— Bruins never scored fewer than 74 points in a game LY, when Lonzo Ball was their point guard. I’m guessing Steve Alford will be just as happy to get back to this country and resume normal life.