13) Apparently someone in the NCAA has gotten a copyright on the phrase ”Mask Madness” for this year’s NCAA tournament, which will be held entirely in Indiana. Sounds like there will be t-shirts sold.
12) Jets hired Robert Saleh as their new head coach; he is expected to bring Mike LaFleur with him from San Francisco to be the Jets’ new offensive coordinator.
Because Saleh is a minority, 49ers get a 3rd round draft pick this year, and one next year. That is part of the NFL’s new minority hiring initiative.
11) UCLA swept their Arizona road trip this season; last seven times UCLA swept their Arizona trip, here is how they made out in the NCAA tournament that year:
— won NCAA tournament once
— lost in championship game once
— made two other Final Fours
— made two other Elite 8’s
— made Sweet 16 the other year
So they’ve won 2+ NCAA tournament games the last seven times they swept in Arizona.
By the way, this is the first time since 1994 that UCLA started out 6-0 in Pac-12 play.
10) Florida State 82, North Carolina 75:
— Tar Heels are 8-5, 3-3 in ACC games.
— Carolina is turning ball over 21.5% of time (#265).
— UNC is #284 in eFG%; they were #309 last year; in the five years before that, their average ranking in that category was 88.8.
9) It is January 17 and Saint Louis hasn’t played a conference game yet, and they’re an NCAA-level team. Billikens are 7-1, with wins over LSU/NC State, but they haven’t played since two days before Christmas. They may wind up playing a lot of games in a short period of time.
8) Auburn has a 6-1 freshman G Sharife Cooper who became eligible three games ago; Auburn won two of the three games he’s played, scoring 83.7 ppg. Much more dynamic team with him in there; even when he went 3-13 from floor like he did Saturday, he also had eight assists.
7) There were 1,039 transfers in college basketball last year; there are 357 Division I hoop teams, so that works out to 2.91 transfers for EVERY team last year. College hoop is turning into baseball, with big $$$ schools pillaging the schools with fewer resources.
6) The founder of Jersey Mike’s sub shops is a guy named Peter; go figure.
5) Steph Curry is a very famous alumnus of Davidson College, but because he never graduated from the school, they’ve never retired his number. Wonder if that affects how much of a donation he gives them every year?
4) Portland Trailblazers’ C Jusuf Nurkic broke his wrist, is out eight weeks.
3) We posted these blind resumes yesterday:
One of these QB’s is in the Hall of Fame, one is not.
Player A: 62-63-4 career regular season record, 2-1 in playoffs. 173 TD passes, 220 INT’s
Player B: 72-72 career regular season record, 8-2 in playoffs. 164 TD passes, 198 INT’s.
Player A is Joe Namath, who is in the Hall of Fame; Player B is Jim Plunkett, who is not.
2) Green Bay 32, LA Rams 18:
— Packers scored the first five times they had the ball.
— Green Bay outgained LA, 484-244, converting 8-12 third down plays.
— Packers host NFC title game in first game next Sunday
1) Buffalo 17, Baltimore 3:
— Taron Jackson had a 101-yard pick-6 for the Bills.
— Lamar Jackson was KO’d from this game with a concussion.
— Buffalo hosts next week if Cleveland wins Sunday; otherwise, they go to Arrowhead.