Tuesday’s Den: Nobody asked me, but…….

49ers 38, Cardinals 10
— 49ers’ first two drives: 7 plays, 19 yards, 1 first down, no points.
— Rest of game: 51 plays, 368 yards, 20 first downs, 38 points.
— Last four games, 49ers converted 28-51 on third down.
— 49ers won 13 of last 16 meetings with Arizona.
— 49ers are 5-0 when they score 24+ points, 1-4 when they don’t.

— Arizona in 2nd half: 32 plays, 139 yards, no points.
— Cardinals lost five of their last six games.
— Dortch caught 9 passes for 103 yards; Hopkins 9 for 91.
— Arizona is 1-7 when it scores less than 29 points.
— 49ers had an 11-yard edge in field position.

Busy college basketball night, for a Monday………
UNLV 56, Southern Illinois 49— This game tipped off around 1am here in New York, anded at 3:15. Have to sleep fast; first games Tuesday are at 11:30am.

UNLV is 5-0; very good defensive team. 

Arizona 101, Cincinnati 93— Wildcats scored 61 points in second half; they scored 1.32 points/possession, shot 65.2% inside arc. Nolley scored 33 points for Cincinnati, making 9-14 shots on the arc.

San Diego State 88, Ohio State 77— Solid win for Mountain West Conference; four Aztecs scored in double figures- two of them didn’t start.

Syracuse 74, Richmond 71 OT— Syracuse led 11-2, then trailed by 5 with 5:54 left. Girard scored 31 points for the Orange. Richmond was 4-9 on the foul line. Spiders were minus-12 in turnovers (18-6).

Arkansas 80, Louisville 54— Arkansas shot 72.4% inside arc. Cardinals are 0-4 for first time since 1940. Arkansas-Creighton Tuesday night is must-watch TV.

Texas State 59, California 55— Golden Bears are off to an 0-5 start, with losses to Cal-Davis, Cal-San Diego, Southern. Opponents are shooting 38.1% on the arc against Cal (#291). Not good.

Colgate 85, Monmouth 66— Hawks are 0-5; looks like they picked a bad year to jump up in class to the CAA. Monmouth is turning ball over 28.5% of the time (#359)

— Maui Classic is one of my favorite parts of the college basketball season; 12 games in three days, eight good teams. The tournament itself announces that this is Thanksgiving Week, a week loaded with lot of ballgames and good food. Nothing bad about that.

This is the first time in three years the Maui Classic has been in Maui, because of the pandemic. We’ll learn a lot this week about the plusses/minuses of teams. The way rosters are cobbled together every year nowadays, the coaches will learn a lot, too.

— Random facts about the Maui Classic, when played in Maui:
Since 2001, every champ of the Maui Classic made the NCAA tournament, except for Notre Dame in 2017— they played in the NIT.

14 of the last 18 Maui Classic champions had a winning record in conference play.

Since 2001, Duke won the Maui Classic three times; those three years, Duke went a combined 3-3 in the NCAA tournament.

Since 2001, North Carolina won the Maui Classic three times; those three years, Tar Heels went 18-0 in the NCAA tournament, winning three national titles.

Of the last 18 Maui champs, only five made the Final Four that year; North Carolina the three times they won the national title, plus UCLA in 2006, UConn in 2010.

— ESPN has added former Marquette coach Steve Wojciechowski to his studio crew, because they don’t already have enough Duke-affiliated people on their staff.

Wojciechowski went 128-95 in seven years at Marquette, 59-68 in Big East games, 0-2 in NCAA tournament games- he was a 5-seed and a 10-seed in those losses.

Allow me to vent for a minute……..

March 2019, Marquette got off to a 23-4 start, but they lost their last four regular season games, split of pair of games in the Big East tournament and were matched up with 12-seed Murray State in the first round of the NCAA’s.

Big East #5-seed against an OVC #12-seed; Seton Hall was only a 3-point favorite. I posted the over in this game as my pick of the day; didn’t think Marquette would contain Ja Morant, and when Murray State got ahead, Marquette would have to press and the game would go over.

One small problem.

Up 42-35 at halftime, Murray State outscored Marquette 22-9 in first 10:00 of second half, and when Marquette did score, they declined to press, they just dropped back into a passive zone, conceding defeat to a freakin’ OVC team. Murray State won 83-64; the game stayed under the total. I was not amused.

When you’re picking games, you win some, you lose some, but the 15-20 minutes after that game was as mad as I’ve ever been after losing a pick. If Wojciechowski had just done his job and competed for 40:00, the pick was an easy winner. Morant would’ve shredded them- he had 16 assists as it was.

Now Wojciechowski is in the ESPN studio, where he sits next to Chris Spatola, who happens to be Mike Krzyzewski’s son-in-law. Go figure.

— Big 14 went 6-2 against the Big East in the Gavitt Games last week.

— Friday night, Eastern Kentucky beat Georgia State on a half-court shot at the buzzer; you don’t see those very often.

— In the NBA Monday night, Timberwolves beat Miami 105-101; Rudy Gobert played 31:00 for Minnesota- they were +3 with him on the floor, even though he didn’t take one shot— he did go 4-4 on foul line and grab nine rebounds.

— This could be the first year ever where North Carolina, NC State, Wake Forest all go to bowl games in the same season. Has never happened before.

— Back when Nick Saban was head coach at Toledo in 1990, a young coach called Saban’s house, hoping for a job on Saban’s staff. The young coach was working at Illinois State at the time, but he was born in Toledo and was interesting in working there.

The young coach talked with Saban’s wife and apparently never got his interview with Saban, but things turned out alright for him. You may have heard of the guy…Urban Meyer, who wound up winning three national titles as a head coach.

— Hall of Fame running back Barry Sanders has a son Nick who is a walk-on basketball player at Michigan State. He wears number 20, just like his dad did.

— Why some teams never win: this is from the 2010 baseball draft:
Colorado in 4th round (pick #140)— Russell Wilson, NC State (at the time)
NY Mets in 9th round (pick #272)— Jacob deGrom, Stetson

Russell Wilson is likely a Hall of Famer, but in football, not baseball.

— Baltimore Ravens’ next four opponents are all 3-7 right now, so it figures that Baltimore is going to make a strong run at a playoff spot, if not the AFC North title.

— Atlanta’s Cordarrelle Patterson had his 9th TD on a kick return Sunday; that is an all-time NFL record, and one that figures to last a long time, since kick returns are lot more uncommon than they used to be.

— Texas Tech basketball coach Mark Adams used to own a minor league hockey team in Lubbock, the Lubbock Cotton Kings, with his twin brother. 

Author: Armadillo Sports

I've been involved in sports my whole life, now just write about them. I like to travel, mostly to Las Vegas- they have gambling there.