Sunday’s Den: Wrapping up a Saturday full of basketball…….

Big West
Long Beach State 83, Cal-Davis 68
Monday, Long Beach fired coach Dan Monson, who has been at Long Beach for 17 years.

Long Beach goes out and wins the Big West tournament, getting to NCAA’s for first time since 2012. Last three years, Long Beach is 43-22 in conference games; the AD looks like a jackass.

Long Beach actually paid a lot of Monson’s salary by playing guarantee games in November (Michigan, DePaul, USC, San Diego State this year); most of the $$$ they got for playing those games went to Monson. Long Beach wasn’t actually paying him that much out of their pocket.

Big 14
Wisconsin 76, Purdue 75
Badgers shot 59.5% inside arc.
Wisconsin was 3-8 in its last 11 regular season games.
Purdue was 24-32 on foul line, Badgers 5-9.

Illinois 98, Nebraska 87
Illinois outscored Nebraska 58-34 in second half.
Terrence Shannon scored 40 points (13-16 on foul line)
Illini won eight of its last ten games.

Big X
Iowa State 69, Houston 41
Iowa State outscored Houston 39-18 in second half.
Cyclones have won 11 of their last 13 games.
Iowa State forces turnovers 25.7% of time (#2)

Temple 74, Florida Atlantic 73
11th-seed Temple has posted upset wins four nights in a row.
Temple is 8-2 in last ten games, which followed an 0-10 streak.
FAU looks like they’re still solidly in the Field of 68.

UAB 93, South Florida 83
UAB shot 61% inside arc.
Bulls won AAC regular season with a 16-2 mark, but they’re on bubble now.
Temple-UAB winner Sunday is a bid-stealer from a bubble team.

Auburn 73, Mississippi State 66
Auburn shot 61.3% inside the arc.
Auburn has best eFG% defense in country.
Miss State had 17 offensive boards, but was 3-15 on the arc.

Florida 95, Texas A&M 90
Florida made 14-26 shots on the arc.
Gators scored 94 ppg in winning the last three days.
There were 67 foul shots in this game; lot of whistles.

NC State 84, North Carolina 76
Wolfpack wins five games in five days to win its first ACC tournament since 1987.
State shot 59.5% inside the arc.
Tournament title kicks in a multi-year contract extension for coach Keatts. 

Word of the Day: Sláinte- means “health” in both Irish and Scottish Gaelic. It is commonly used as a drinking toast in Ireland, Scotland and the Isle of Man.

Happy St Patrick’s Day. 

Big East
UConn 73, Marquette 57
First time UConn won a conference tournament since 2016 AAC tourney.
Huskies are 20-1 since Christmas.
UConn has #6 eFG% in country, #4 eFG% defense.

Mountain West
New Mexico 68, San Diego State 61
Lobos won four days in a row, giving up 61 ppg.
New Mexico wins MW tournament for first time since 2014.
San Diego State was in MW tourney final for 7th straight year (3-4)
Ledee (25 points) was only Aztec to score more than 8 points.

Ivy League
Brown 90, Princeton 81
#1-seed Princeton gets upset here.
Brown has only been in NCAA’s once (1986)

Yale 69, Cornell 57
Yale never trailed, held Big Red to 32.8% from floor.
Yale has won two of last four Ivy League tournaments.
Oregon 75, Colorado 68
Ducks’ big man Dante was 12-12 from floor, scored 25 points.
Oregon won its last four games, is in NCAA’s for first time since 2021.
Colorado had its 8-game win streak snapped.

Famous birthdays for March 17:
Cito Gaston, 80
Kurt Russell, 73
Gary Sinise, 69
Danny Ainge, 65
Sam Bowie, 63
Rob Lowe, 60
Rhys Hoskins, 31

Saint Peter’s 68, Fairfield 63
Fairfield led this game by 10 points early in 2nd half. 
Saint Peter’s has won seven of its last nine games.
Stags missed their last 15 shots behind the arc.

Akron 62, Kent State 61
Kent State scored to go ahead by a point with 0:06 left; one of their guys thought they were still losing. When Akron inbounded the ball, Kent State kid fouls the guy with the ball on purpose, giving the Zips foul shots with 0:04.8 left, which they made. 

Kent PG Santiago played all 40:00 for third night in a row.

Conference USA
Western Kentucky 78, Texas-El Paso 71
Hilltoppers trailed by 6 with 13:18 left in game.
WKU shot 57.1% inside the arc.
Hilltoppers are in NCAA’s for first time since 2013. 

America East
Vermont 66, UMass Lowell 61
Catamounts win America East tourney for 5th time in seven years.
Vermont was +8 in turnovers (14-6).
Vermont beat St John’s in November, lost to Virginia by 6.

Howard 70, Delaware State 67
Bison won 7 of last 8 games, after an 11-15 start.
Howard is in NCAA’s for second year in a row (22-13 LY)

Howard has a 6-9 graduate student, Seth Towns:
2016-17- scored 12.3 ppg at Harvard
2017-18- was Ivy League Player of Year at Harvard
2018-19- medical redshirt
2019-20- medical redshirt
2020-21- scored 3.8 ppg at Ohio State
2021-22- medical redshirt
2022-23- voluntarily took last year off
2023-24- is scoring 14.2 ppg for Howard.

Grambling 75, Texas Southern 66
Grambling is in the NCAA’s for the first time ever.
Tigers won nine of their last ten games. 

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.