13) Duke 74, North Carolina 73— Tar Heels were 4-27 on the arc, and lost by a point.
12) Seton Hall 81, Marquette 79— Three players were ejected after a pushing/shoving thing early in second half. Seton Hall player also got a technical with 1:58 left; for the game, Pirates were 26-44 on foul line, Marquette 29-41. Tough game to officiate; very physical.
Markus Howard was shooting 90.7% on the foul line before this game; he was 18-24 here, and was 1-15 from the floor.
All in all, seven players either fouled out or were ejected.
11) Southern Miss basketball coach Doc Sadler coaches in sweats, which is a good thing, just a much different thing than most college coaches. I’m sitting on my couch Friday watching his team play, having lunch I bought at Wendy’s and I’m dressed better than he is, and I don’t dress well. Go figure.
10) Memphis 79, UCF 55— Its good to play the conference tournament on your home court. Tigers host top-seeded Houston today. Bubble teams are rooting for Houston.
9) Former NFL QB JP Losman is 38 now and is an assistant coach at Clemson; he threw the ball so well at the school’s Pro Day, throwing to WR’s/DB’s, that an NFL team asked Losman if he was interested in coming back to the NFL. Losman hasn’t played in the league since 2011- he declined.
8) Rhode Island 75, VCU 70— #1-seed goes down in the A-14; VCU’s best player Marcus Evans got hurt while VCU had a decent lead in the first half- they went in the dumper after that.
7) There was a clip on Twitter Friday of Rockies’ 3B Nolan Arenado shooting hoops outside Colorado’s spring training facility, and his teammates react when he makes a couple of 3-pointers in a row, but the unusual thing is, Arenado shoots the ball left-handed. He plays baseball right-handed.
6) One of my favorite NBA players to watch is Montrezl Harrell of the Clippers; he works so hard, gives great effort. In four years in the NBA, he’s worked his way up from 3.6 ppg three years ago to 16.2 ppg this year. Not the most skilled player, but he works his butt off, and lot of time, great effort means more than skill.
Another player like that is Steven Adams of the Thunder; its fun to watch guys play hard.
5) Detroit Tigers met with Players’ Union reps this week, but they insisted on having the meeting outside on a ballfield, instead of in the clubhouse. Players are apparently concerned that their clubhouse would be bugged for the meeting. Not a lot of trust for the front office there.
4) In case you were wondering (you weren’t), Jerry Blevins had 20 appearances LY where he faced only one batter, most in the major leagues. MLB-wide, only seven relievers had 15+ one-batter appearances.
3) Winner of the Home Run Derby gets $1 million now? No pressure on the guy who is throwing the pitches. Hopefully the pitcher will get at least 10% of the winner’s share.
2) Coaching carousel:
— George Washington fired coach Maurice Joseph.
— Appalachian State fired coach Jim Fox.
— Texas A&M fired Billy Kennedy; he was in Sweet 16 two years ago.
— UNLV fired Marvin Menzies; he really didn’t get a fair shake there. He inherited two players his first year, and this year, his 3rd year, their best player got hurt and didn’t play.
1) I respect the job ESPN’s Joe Lunardi does with Bracketology, but I try not to look at it that often, because he isn’t the committee. We’ll find out the brackets Sunday night. Until then, just need to sort out all the teams that are earning their way into the tournament.