Season 2

219 entries (1-100 shown)

Epilogue, The Second

INDIANAPOLIS, Apr. 2 -- There are huge signs all over town -- on airport walls, strung over streetlights, over the main gate to the RCA Dome. They all read, "The Road Ends Here." There's also a giant logo on the side of the 45,000-seat venue, a green and gold star with zag-zigging trailers that has...

Game! Of! The! Night! Mar 11: Utah State vs. Nevada

Great college basketball traditions: Dickie V, pep bands playing "Hey Baby," and Utah State against Nevada in the Game! Of! The! Night!. This is the third such battle this year -- remember that it was UNR that stopped USU's winning streak in this box, with the 75-57 decision that made the Aggies 5-1...

MMBOD Mar 09: Aaron Nixon - Long Beach State

Snoop would be so proud. Long Beach has been red-hot streaking into the Big West tourney (winning six in a row), and now they've won their first tourney game in six years... the emergence of a sparkplug guard from Cleveland is a primary reason. Davis led the third-fastest team in the nation (78.9 po...

Game! Of! The! Night! Mar 10: Holy Cross vs. Bucknell

One of the great clichés of Championship Week is that it's difficult to beat a team three times. And it's true that familiarity breeds a lot of game tape, but in today's only game featuring a black bid binder and net-cutting, it should be one of the easier trifectas to accomplish. Buckn...

MMBOD Mar 08: Jordan Hasquet - Montana

Frosh forward Jordan Hasquet only averaged 6.7 ppg and 3.7 rpg this year, but he saved his best performances for Montana's biggest conference rival. Against Northern Arizona, he went 10 and 9 in their first meeting, dropped 30 points in the schedule-ending message game against the regular-season cha...

Game! Of! The! Night! Mar 09: Ohio at Miami (Oh.)

No bids being given out tonight, but we have a decent quarterfinal matchup in the Mid-American. It's actually a semifinal rematch from last year, the trial-by-fire, come-from-behind upset that sent the No. 7-seeded Bobcats on to the title game with brimming confidence. Miami has been the under-the-r...

MMBOD Mar 07: Ken Tutt - Oral Roberts

The scenario seemed so familiar: a hungry low-seeded opponent readying to upset the regular-season champs in the title game and go on to the Tournament. Much like last season's shock loss to No. 7 Oakland, No. 6 Chicago State hung around and led into the second half on No. 1 Oral Roberts' home floor...

Game! Of! The! Night! Mar 08: Montana at Northern Arizona

Last week, Montana (21-6, 10-4) destroyed Northern Arizona (20-9, 13-2) at home -- too bad the Lumberjacks had already clinched the No. 1 seed and the regular-season championship. One of the perks of claiming the Big Sky title is that you get to host the semifinals and title game, so their inevitabl...

Game! Of! The! Night! Mar 07: Butler vs. Wisconsin-Milwaukee

You probably don't remember who Ryvon Covile is, and there's a reason for that. He missed two free throws with 38 seconds left in last year's Horizon League title game. If he had hit either, Detroit would have likely gone on to the Tournament -- Hoops Nation would have remembered the Titans, and sti...

MMBOD Mar 06: T.J. Carter - North Carolina-Wilmington

So what if their shooters can't hit the side of a barn? When you limit your tourney opponents to 33%, 30% and 38% shooting, you can afford to toss it into the pasture more often. UNC Wilmington will take the sixth most efficient defense in the country (.872 PA per def. possession) all the way to the...

MMBOD Mar 05: Randal Falker - Southern Illinois

bc (dc): Southern Illinois has had a great couple years, how do you see them this year?Kyle Whelliston: Everyone's sleeping on the Salukis now, but I really think this is going to turn out to be a good year for them. They'll likely to use the regular season to absorb their big graduation losses and ...

Game! Of! The! Night! Mar 05: Bradley vs. Southern Illinois

What a fine mess the MVC tourney has become. Gone are the top seeds, and all the talking heads are having told-you-so field days with all the El Foldos going on. The Missouri Valley Conference is a bubble-busting bust, they say. Teams like Northern Iowa, despite their 23 wins, will have to sweat it ...

Game! Of! The! Night! Mar 04: Coastal Carolina at Winthrop

Three champions will be crowned today: despite the fact that nearly everyone else will be meeting these teams for the first time today, we know how hard these players and coaches have worked to get to this point. Each winner today will be referred to as "champion" around these parts for the next yea...

Game! Of! The! Night! Mar 02: Gardner-Webb vs. East Tennessee State

The A-Fun starts counting casualties today in Johnson City at the home of its new-oldest member. And while ETSU would much rather be fighting it out with their old SoCon buddies in Charleston, S.C. this week, getting to host the conference tourney isn't all bad. They'll get a tough test in hot No. 4...

MMBOD Mar 01: Ricky Woods - Southeastern Louisiana

"Ricky McBoingBoing" is one of the most explosive leapers in Hoops Nation, getting up two or three feet in the air with the absolute minimum of leg-muscle twitchings. His team is springing back too, winning seven of eight Southland Conference games after a five-game losing skid.Woods also became the...

MMBOD Feb 28: Donnell Covington - Charleston Southern

What's more painful than pain? More painful than having to listen to T-Pain? Winning 19 games, then having your entire season wiped out by a 21-point loss on your home floor to the No. 6 seed. Yowch! The Big South tourney, always good for an upset or two, didn't disappoint in Tuesday night's quarter...

Game! Of! The! Night! Mar 01: Southeastern Louisiana at McNeese State

Northwestern State has taken control of their league and has received plenty of national love, but the Southland's supporting cast is aligning behind them to try and knock off the Demons in the upcoming conference tourney. McNeese (9-5) got blown out 97-79 in Natchitoches last weekend, but no team m...

MMBOD Feb 27: Jordan Hasquet - Montana

Northern Arizona wrapped up the Big Sky one-seed on Saturday afternoon at Sac-State, but their long-awaited trip to pre-season favorite (and No. 2 seed) Montana resulted in a romp that should give the Jacks pause as they move towards tourney time. The Grizzles took the lead five minutes in and never...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 28: Eastern Kentucky at Jacksonville State

In the NBA, the playoffs mean "win or go home," but in campus-site tournaments like the OVC's, an opening round victory means "win and go on the road." The winner of this game gets a trip to Nashville to (presumably) play No. 1 seed Murray State on Friday.The Gamecocks feature four double-figure sco...

MMBOD Feb 26: Jeff Xavier - Manhattan

In early January, Manhattan looked like the class of the MAAC; academic and injury losses brought adversity. But last night, Manhattan fought back from a 10-point deficit against their closest rivals in front of an overflow SRO crowd at their green gym, led by Pawtucket's own Jeff Xavier. The Jasper...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 27: Delaware State at Bethune-Cookman

The farthest-flung teams in the MEAC go at it tonight in sunny Florida; northeast corner Delaware State (15-1, six straight wins) and far southeastern representative Bethune-Cookman (10-5, four straight) also happen to be the two hottest teams in the league. DSU has dominated the league for the seco...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 26: Iona at Manhattan

When these two MAAC titans met in January, the result was a Manhattan blowout at Iona's house. As expected, both teams are 13-4 heading into their return match -- tonight's game will end up settling the regular season title, the tourney No. 1 seed and a double-bye into the semis. The Jaspers had the...

MMBOD Feb 25: Caleb Green - Oral Roberts

IUPUI had the hot 11-1 start and all the headlines (well, here anyway), crimping Oral Roberts' hopes of avenging their agonizing near-miss in last year's tourney. But on the last day of league play, ORU (18-11, 13-3) took advantage of an untimely IUPUI two-game skid, claimed a slice of the regular s...

MMBOD Feb 24: Ibrahim Jaaber - Pennsylvania

There are two types of people in this world: Ibby and anti-Ibby. When you're Ibby, you conduct your business with a calm dignity and dart-sharp exactitude. Why, being Ibby might make you the most efficient scorer in Division I basketball if you measure the highest effective FG% (64%) for ppg (19.1)....

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 25: Nevada at Utah State

USU and UNR are old chums; they've got scrapbooks full of Big West memories, back when the Aggies would invite the Wolf Pack over to their house and kick the %&@ out of them just for fun (USU holds a 22-8 all-time edge vs. Nevada). And the last time this 2005-06 Nevada squad lost, it was the 59-...

MMBOD Feb 23: Loren Stokes - Hofstra

At some point, a team will simply refuse to accept a national ranking; George Mason was the most recent mid-20's mid-major to fall, losing at Hofstra last night and setting up the most incredibly thrilling Colonial tourney in league history. With GMU, Hofstra and UNCW (even Astyle=font-weight:bold H...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 23: North Carolina-Wilmington at Virginia Commonwealth

The University of North Carolina at Wilmington is a classic mid-major tale in the making: a scrappy bunch who masks their shooting inefficiencies with nationally-ranked defense, who shook off an embarrassing loss to RPI No. 278 East Carolina to go 13-3 in conference. But they're competing with lots ...

MMBOD Feb 21: Matt Webster - Evansville

The Five-Bid Valley: wonderful idea in theory, but it proved to be a complicated Rube Goldberg device with far too many moving parts. Last night, the spoon-lever designed to move the golden egg from the mini-seesaw to the hamster wheel was smashed to pieces.Much like Wichita State's thunderous colla...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 22: Lehigh at Bucknell

Short odds that there would be a game like this this late in the Patriot League season; you'd be right if you guessed that 12-0 Bucknell would be one of the participants, but traditional power Holy Cross' losses (three) means that the 'Saders could make this particular party. Nobody expected Lehigh ...

MMBOD Feb 20: Larry Blair - Liberty

Dr. Jerry Falwell might be tempted to explain Liberty's worst-beats-first win over Winthrop (18-7, 11-3) as evidence of the divine, but the Big South upset special was likely a combination of two very secular factors: fatigue from the Eagles' double-overtime BracketBuster victory and the uplifting p...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 21: Davidson at Georgia Southern

Two 9-4 teams go at it tonight with a share of the Southern Conference South division title on the line, and will get top seeding in next week's tourney should fellow 9-4 Elon stumble in the North. Davidson (16-9 overall) is a good team that has turned in too many awful performances, such as their d...

MMBOD Feb 20: Kevin Gardner - Boston University

Senior Day is a special occasion, a chance for the fans celebrate the careers of your outgoing players one last time. And while preseason America East favorite Boston University hasn't had much to crow about this season (they're 10-15, 7-7), the senior forward pictured to the left had the game of hi...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 20: Vermont at Albany

It's back to work for the BracketBusting Cats and Dogs of the America East. Albany did the conference proud by dominating on the boards (+14) in their 70-67 near-miss against VCU on Friday night; Vermont had less luck, shooting 27% and losing to ex-AE Drexel in the radio-only portion of the event.An...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 18: George Mason at Wichita State

Sure, there's that Bucknell-Northern Iowa tilt, but this is the only game in BracketBusterLand that matches up the current leaders from two of America's premier mid-major conferences. In the midst of the Four-Bid Valley discussion (or 5BV or 6BV, if you swing that way), Wichita State (21-6, 12-4 MVC...

MMBOD Feb 17: Nick Fazekas - Nevada

One of the strengths of the Joint Photographic Experts' Group (JPEG) compression format is that pictures can be displayed over and over in web browsers, with no degradation of image quality over time. That's why we can put Nick Fazekas here in this space over and over, and not have to worry about ev...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 17: Akron at Nevada

Here is is... it's BracketBusters time, and while we'll stop short of encouraging signal theft, do whatever you need to do to be in front of one of the 39 U.S. television sets that can pick up ESPNU tonight. Because you're going to get to see two teams that will likely have NCAA seed numbers attache...

MMBOD Feb 16: Rodney Webb - Florida Atlantic

No, not Gardner-Webb (although they did get a big win over Belmont last night), Rodney Webb. In an 83-78 win that likely saved their season, Florida Atlantic's hot guard scored 21 of his 30 in the first half and banged out jumpers at a 75% clip, all of which helped Matt Doherty's boys take down a bi...

MMBOD Feb 15: Chris Jordan - Sam Houston State

The Southland race has devolved into a romp for 10-1 Astyle=font-weight:bold HREF=http://schools.basketballstate.com/NWSU>Northwestern State, so it's easy to forget about the other good team in the league - the one that's hovering just outside the RPI Top 100, the one the was stealing all the hea...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 16: Belmont at Gardner-Webb

The Atlantic Sun race looks just like the Missouri Valley's: five teams with guady league records battling it out for conference supremacy. Well, at least until you look at the RPI numbers. Tonight is Thrill-A-Minute Thursday, as the A-Fun hosts two meaningful separation games among its elite. East ...

MMBOD Feb 14: Matt Witt - Eastern Kentucky

Eastern Kentucky was one of the great feel-good stories of last season, completing a five-year rebuilding program by winning 22 games and winning the OVC championship. One of the primary symbols of that team was a pass-first, shoot-last point guard who set the Colonel's tempo with a steady staccato ...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 15: Hofstra at North Carolina-Wilmington

When I called Hofstra head coach last summer to get his take on this season's CAA race, he said, "It's all about Old Dominion, baby." Well, in a strange twist of fate, it's been partially about Hofstra. They're just a game out in the loss column as the Colonial's stretch run begins.Tonight's tilt fe...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 14: Creighton at Wichita State

All due respect to the Valentine's Day bloodbath tonight between Penn and Princeton, there's no love lost in the upper reaches of the MVC. After a freaky weekend that saw five road wins, the best (and mathematically strangest) mid-major conference in America still features a four-way tie at the top ...

MMBOD Feb 13: Elton Nesbitt - Georgia Southern

The Southern Conference is one of the oldest and proudest leagues in college basketball. Once the stomping grounds of Duke and Carolina, events have conspired to unspin the most disappointing season in the SoCon's 85-year history: once unthinkable, it now looks like a possible play-in league. On a n...

MMBOD Feb 12: A.J. Jackson - Robert Morris

Very, very few players in the NEC have Tournament experience that doesn't involve a high teen seed. A.J. Jackson does - he was the guy who came off the bench when Zakee Wadood had too many fouls, back in East Tennessee State's recent SoCon glory days. But that gets tiring. Jackson sat out a year and...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 13: Louisiana Tech at Nevada

When they say Big Monday, they mean it. Two 8-3 teams square off in a showdown that will determine sole possession first place in the Wizzac; third wheel Utah State made this possible by graciously obliging at home to NMSU on Saturday. Last time these two met was Groundhog Day, which saw a 65-53 Pac...

MMBOD Feb 11: Dashaun Wood - Wright State

The fifty minutes of a double-overtime game give everyone equal opportunity to be hero and goat -- oftentimes, all in the same contest. Wright's sparkplug junior guard had 20 points in regulation, but missed an opportunity to win the game with a wildly unsuccessful lane-drive at the buzzer; then he ...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 11: Southern Illinois at Creighton

Ever since Moss Man and the Indiana State Sycamores upset the Salukis on their home floor, 10-4 SIU's been a bit blue. But a road win at 11-3 Creighton (a team that they beat back on Jan. 24) would certainly give them the emotional lift they need to head into the MVC's stretch run. The Bluejays, on ...

MMBOD Feb 09: Kelly Golob - Northern Arizona

Folks have questions about the surprise team atop the Big Sky (especiallyWestern Kentucky, the team that drew them in the BracketBuster), and The Mid-Majority has answers. The Northern Arizona Lumberjacks are not real lumberjacks, and the Walkup Skydome is not available from the Home Depot. And thei...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 09: Northern Illinois at Ohio

With the sad state of the MAC West these days, I'm ready to declare Northern Illinois (13-7, 8-4 Mid-American) an honorary member of the East division. Their current four-game win streak echoes the West-beating runs of the right-siders' thumpings of the Astyle=font-weight:bold HREF=http://schools.ba...

MMBOD Feb 08: Jason Wingate - Manhattan

Bobby Gonzalez played just seven guys in this one, and five of them played 30+ minutes. Exhausted? No way! One of those Jaspers who played a full 40 (pictured, left) was a high-hopping 6'0" guard who shot 64% from the floor including four big threes, and Wingate helped lead Manhattan to a big win ac...

MMBOD Feb 07: Julien Mills - Ball State

There hasn't been too much of a reason to mention David Letterman U. in this space so far -- the Cardinals have really struggled to find points (62.3 PF, 42.8% FG) and have slumped to a 4-8 league record, continuing a slow and sad decline for a program that used to contend for the MAC title year in ...

MMBOD Feb 06: Whit Holcomb-Faye - Radford

Mr. Holcomb-Faye started his season with a bang, leading his team in scoring 11 times in Radford's first 17 games (including a BOTD nod on Nov. 30). But in the past couple of weeks, Holcomb-Faye has struggled, shooting 28% from the floor over a recent three-game stretch against Birmingham Southern, ...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 07: Wichita State at Northern Iowa

Doesn't it seem like every time you turn around, there's a life-or-death game in the MVC? With Wichita State's 2OT win over Southern Illinois on Saturday, the four-headed monster atop the Valley standings is now three: UNI, Wichita and Creighton are all 10-3 with five league games to go, with SIU a ...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 06: Loyola Marymount at San Diego

It's tough toiling inUMPFN's shadow, but these two squads have done yeoman's work indeed - the Lions and the Toreros will battle for second place in the West Coast Conference tonight at the Slim Gym. LMU has shaken off a rough non-conference start (3-11) to run a 5-2 WCC record; they give up as many...

MMBOD Feb 06: Nick Fazekas - Nevada

All due respect to Grambling's Brion Rush and Josh Hinz of Beloit (he's D3-ineligible) - but we're not about gaudy stats around here, just the solid performances that win ballgames. The Big Freak is our first three-time winner of the BOTD award, and it's for his third 35+ performance of the season. ...

MMBOD Feb 05: Jared Jordan - Marist

When Old Dominion drew Marist in the BracketBusters Presented by The Mid-Majority event, it seemed like a slap in the face, an insult, a punishment for not living up to the hype. Now there's a real possibility they might lose that game. Why? The Red Foxes are starting to ramp it up, winning nine of ...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 04: Southern Illinois at Wichita State

This season's first meeting between the Shockers and Salukis was a see-saw showdown in which SIU held Wichita State to 32% shooting, their worst floor performance of the year. Tonight, when two of the four 9-3 MVC teams collide, 6-10 Shox center Paul Miller and co. will attempt to avenge that loss i...

MMBOD Feb 02: David Fisher - New Mexico State

David Fisher's had a rough couple of weeks (no, not that David Fisher). The New Mexico State guard was declared academically ineligible in mid-January, but appealed to the school and NCAA to "reinterpret" his grades and was successfully reinstated. Now, I don't know what any of that means (I got a D...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 03: Kennesaw State at North Florida

The two Division I newbies in the Atlantic Sun have taken drastically different paths. North Florida has performed exactly how a team new to this level should. They're second-to-dead-last in the RPI (No. 333), due primarily to their ugly 2-11 conference record, 5-15 overall. That's not to say there ...

MMBOD Feb 01: Tyson Schnitker - Indiana State

Of all the teams to break Southern Illinois' 33-game home win streak and all-time Valley 42-game run, you'd never figure it would be Indiana State -- the streaky Sycamores went in to the game losers of 11 straight (remember, they went 8-0 to start the year). It was ISU's first win at SIU Arena since...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 02: California-Irvine at Pacific

This is it - preseason Big West favorite Pacific's last chance to rein in runaway UCI before the stretch run starts. The Anteaters (12-8, 8-0) were 4-8 in non-conference play, but they suddenly found their mojo once BWC play started. They've already beaten UOP once,a 70-61 decision at their Bren Eve...

MMBOD Jan 31: Nick Porter - Creighton

Just as Northern Iowa ascended into the Top 25's popularity contest, Valley reality kicked in: last night, Creighton's home floor swallowed the Panthers up for the 10th straight time. That's the macro view; CU's won eight of their last nine (including the matchup with UNI in Iowa) since they lost Na...

Game! Of! The! Night! Feb 01: Kent State at Ohio

What can the Mid-American Conference do to catch a break? Take the Bracket Buster, for instance. Whellistonian darling Akron gets a sweet shot at Nevada (RPI No. 53), but Kent hosts Butler (98) and Ohio takes on Samford (79). How's that going to bring up the numbers, One Bid MAC?Tonight in Athens, t...

MMBOD Jan 30: Dashaun Wood - Wright State

Wright State speaks for most of the Horizon League right now - decent little team, .500-or-so record, completely overshadowed by Wisconsin-Milwaukee. But they stuck with UWM in a 61-54 loss in Brew City two weekends ago, and broke a four-game slide last night with Youngstown State in the house. The ...

MMBOD Jan 28: Paul Millsap - Louisiana Tech

Postseason-ineligible Fresno has made life difficult for postseason-hopeful Utah State and Nevada in the WAC, but postseason-maybe-just-maybe LaTech has been able to take care of them - twice, in fact. Last night, the Bulldogs' Ja'Vance Coleman lofted a three-pointer over the head of the man picture...

Game! Of! The! Night! Jan 28: Old Dominion at George Mason

The CAA's chances to avoid going stag to the Big Dance likely fizzled for another year when the last team having anything an at-large NCAA resumé, George Mason, lost to UNCW last Saturday. There are just too many untimely and/or embarrassing losses here. But now, hopefully, we can forge...

MMBOD Jan 27: Justin Hare - Belmont

Astyle=font-weight:bold HREF=http://schools.basketballstate.com/KENN>Kennesaw State may be reigning over the A-Sun right now, but they can't go to the conference tournament as a transitional D1. Last night on regional television, Belmont knocked Matt Doherty's FAU Owls out of "first," and did so ...

Game! Of! The! Night! Jan 27: Elon at Davidson

We're sticking with the SoCon tonight. North-leading Elon has streaked to a 6-0 record and has won eight straight games. How are they doing it? Certainly not by shooting the ball: their 42% team FG rate is second-to-last in the league. And how they've been managing without the services of Chris Porn...

MMBOD Jan 25: Mark Zoller - Pennsylvania

After a rough December against tougher opposition, Penn is ramping up at the right time: January. Last night at the cozy Philly Palestra, the Quakers overcame an old Big 5 nemesis and A-14 foe in LaSalle. Four Penn men scored in double figures to give coach Fran Dunphy his 10th win of the season and...

Game! Of! The! Night! Jan 26: Tennessee Tech at Murray State

It's on in the Ohio Valley tonight, as the two best teams in the conference battle for seeding position. Tech (9-2) is on a six-game win streak; the RPI No. 73 Golden Eagles are led by a three-man double-figure-scoring backcourt, and despite being solidly in the middle of all OVC statistical measure...

Game! Of! The! Night! Jan 25: Bucknell at Lehigh

Undefeated powers collide tonight in the Patriot League! One of them you're aware of: league favorite and ESPY winners Bucknell, who are off to a 5-0 start after bravely battling the top teams in the nation. You probably aren't familiar with the home team tonight, Lehigh, unless you're old enough to...

MMBOD Jan 24: David Jackson - Western Illinois

The Fightin' Leathernecks are a perpetual afterthought in the Mid-Con, and the only thing they've had to celebrate in recent years was the 29th-rated recruiting class in D1 last year. Didn't matter, WIU stumbled to 11 wins. They're not doing too much better this year (six wins and a 2-6 conference r...

Game! Of! The! Night! Jan 24: Kent State at Miami (Oh.)

The MAC is the blackest and bluest mid-major conference in America, and an up East division has feasted on a down West. The top four teams in the league all come from the right-hand geographical side, and they have two losses to Western teams between them, Ohio's loss last Tuesday at Northern Illino...

MMBOD Jan 23: Jerice Crouch - Chattanooga

A lot of great performances on Monday night, but we turn to the latest chapter in intriguing two-headed race that's shaping up in the SoCon's two divisions, one which features a not-a-misprint 6-0 Astyle=font-weight:bold HREF=http://schools.basketballstate.com/ELON>Elon squad. After sweeping the ...

One Week In The Valley

Scenes from my MVC trip. QWEST Center Omaha™©® Creighton's (Injured) Nate Funk The parade passes Funk by Creighton Huddle Bluejay Pep Missouri State gets set to defend the castle Hammons Student Center, Springfield MO Ahearn to the Line Branson, MO Carver Center, Peoria I...

MMBOD Jan 22: Matt Shaw - Southern Illinois

Yesterday afternoon, a big 6'7" sophomore Saluki had the breakout game the SIU coach and fans have been waiting for. He was the team's leading scorer and rebounder in a game in which Southern Illinois wobbled early, but clamped down in during the second half -- Shaw had key tip-ins during a 9-0 unan...

Game! Of! The! Night! Jan 23: Utah State at Nevada

If the WAC is indeed going to get two bids this year, here are the two that will most likely nab 'em, and they're on display on Big (Mid-Major) Monday on ESPN tonight. Utah State is doing quite well in their first season up from the Big West - after being broken in by a December trip to Hawaii, they...

MMBOD Jan 21: Ben Woodside - North Dakota State

Chant it with me now: "Chaminade, Valpo, North Dakota State." The independent Bison (RPI No. 187) and their nine freshmen lost on a buzzer-beating tip-in against Utah Valley State on Thursday, and the Wisconsin Badgers (RPI No. 3) had the extreme misfortune of being next on the schedule. Despite tur...

Game! Of! The! Night! Jan 22: Army at Navy

There's a division of opinion as to whether current military operations are doing anything to truly protect this homeland of ours, but the fact remains that without the past efforts of our armed forces, we don't get to enjoy fun diversions like college basketball. No matter where I travel across Hoo...

Game! Of! The! Night! Jan 21: Georgia Southern at Davidson

Here's a matchup of two teams that have lived the harsh reality of the modern-day SoCon, long ago the romping grounds of Duke and Carolina but now a league that struggles to get out of the teen-seeds. Georgia Southern (12-5, 3-1) had a breakthrough 21-win season in 2003-04, but were nipped by Chatta...

MMBOD Jan 20: Eddie Ard - Lipscomb

Memo to the airlines: do not put Lipscomb and Belmont on the same plane. When Music City's hottest basketball rivalry touched down at BNA lst night, a 6'5" junior swingman rose above. Air Ard kept hitting shots and threes and free throws, and 11-6 (7-2) Lipscomb broke open the city pair in a blowout...

MMBOD Jan 19: Loren Stokes - Hofstra

The future of the Colonial Athletic Association may not only be "next," he might even be "now." Hofstra's star junior guard scored seven of a gamebreaking 11-0 run, and the Pride notched a tremendously large road win at league favorites Old Dominion. The Pride shot just 42% as a club, but Stokes too...

Game! Of! The! Night! Jan 20: Belmont at Lipscomb

Here's an alternative way to look at tonight's Battle of Music City, an enticing matchup of 6-2 Atlantic Sun squads. Belmont is the new school, Nashville 2.0, slickly-produced CMT twang. The Bruins get a lot of hits (league-leading 50.2% FG, 9th nationally), but they're disposable and quickly forgot...

MMBOD Jan 18: Quinton Hosley - Fresno State

Nevada's first WAC loss came against Hawaii two weeks ago, when three Rainbow Warriors came together to negate WAC scoring leader Nick Fazekas' 37-point outburst. The Freak only had 17 last night, but it took a total team effort to bring down the talented Pack - in a fast-paced game, five Fresno Sta...

Game! Of! The! Night! Jan 19: Hofstra at Old Dominion

The CAA went into the New York area to raise the league's visibility, so it's odd that of all the good-but-not-great teams that make up the league's core this year, Hofstra has received the least love. They won nine of ten against the middle of the RPI table in late December and early January, and a...

Game! Of! The! Night! Jan 18: Louisiana Tech at Utah State

It's WAC-y Wednesday, and La-Tech is your surprise conference leader, sprinting out to a 4-0 start that includes nice wins against Hawaii and Fresno State. Defending two-time NCAA rebounding king Paul Millsap used the mini-run to climb back into the national lead in glasswork (12.5 rpg), and has his...

MMBOD Jan 17: Kiril Wachsmann - Iona

When Iona lost three of four in the wraparound week between 2005 and 2006, there was no mystery why they were tanking. Sure, the Gaels have a great backcourt, but they were being murdered inside. After spending a couple weeks on the back of an egg nog carton, their quint-captain and sturdy post pre...

MMBOD Jan 16: Pooh Jeter - Portland

I don't know what it is with diminutive nicknames, but undersized players with names like "Mookie," "Smush" and "Spud" will always find a place in the hearts of casual sports fans. Last night, a 5'11" Portland Pilot senior guard named "Pooh" helped lead his team a WCC overtime victory over Pepperdin...

Game! Of! The! Night! Jan 17: Furman at Georgia Southern

Georgia Southern has won eight in a row, and has raced out to a 3-0 record (12-4 overall) in the redundant SoCon South division. The Eagles feature the league's leading scorer (Elton Nesbitt, 21.8 ppg), they lead the league in threes (40.6%), speed (77.5 poss. per 40 minutes). and D (.95 points per ...

Scenes From The (Big) Southside

Pictures from a southern swing. A quiet moment with High Point's AZ Reid Scary HPU Panther Liberty University, Lynchburg VA Who wants pizza? Alma Mater Winthrop After Hours Kennesaw State Cheerleaders Crazy Gardner-Webb Fans Campbell vs. G-Webb Middle Tennessee Tip-Off ...

MMBOD Jan 15: Brion Rush - Grambling State

Brion Rush is the scoring machine you've never heard of. You know about Redick and Morrison (and if you read this site regularly, about Clark and Burtt and Neal), but this 6'2" senior guard from Shreveport is sixth in the nation in both points per game (24.1 ppg) and points per 40 min. (28.7 p40). G...

Game! Of! The! Night! Jan 16: Southern at Mississippi Valley State

Martin Luther King didn't specifically mention basketball in his 1963 "I have a dream" speech, but its echoes were felt in the 1966 Texas Western national championship and later in the inclusion of HBCU's in the NCAA's Division I. Today, many of those historically black colleges and universities are...

MMBOD Jan 13: Reggie Bishop - Campbell

What can you say about Gardner-Webb? So intriguing on paper, so enticing. They beat Minnesota, and almost beat UNC! But they've looked unfocused and wobbly in losing three straight league games at home, and are providing plenty of ammunition to the argument that pundits are dumb.But then again, what...

Game! Of! The! Night! Jan 14: Missouri State at Wichita State

Hot thunder in the Valley this afternoon. Here are two of the teams that have legitimate chances to capture two of the MoVal's presumed three bids, chances that have been enhanced by key injuries at Northern Iowa and Creighton.Blake Ahern (MVC-leading 18.8 ppg) is the floor leader of a Missouri Stat...

MMBOD Jan 12: Paul Millsap - Louisiana Tech

Can't hold out much longer -- gotta give some BOTD love to the power forward on my ESPN.com mid-major all-star team from last month. The two-time rebounding champion had 23 points and 18 rebounds (his eleventh dub-dub of the season) as Louisiana Tech beat Hawaii at home. Millsap scored eight of the ...

Game! Of! The! Night! Jan 13: Cornell at Pennsylvania

Non-conference is officially over: the Ancient Eight are in the house! Tonight marks the annual Friday kickoff for Hoops Nation's brainiest, zaniest, no-postseason-tourney-iest league. Every game counts in the 14-Game Tournament®, and tonight's Palestra tip-off counts more than some other...

MMBOD Jan 11: Steve Burtt - Iona

If there are two things that never fail to satiate my entertainment jones, it's "Dueling Banjos" and dueling backcourts. The MAAC provides precious little of the former, but plenty of the latter. Last night, two of the highest-scoring players in the country went at it in Jersey City, Iona's Steve Bu...

Game! Of! The! Night! Jan 12: Albany at Boston University

There are clapping dogs, rhythmic dogs, harmonic dogs, and America East dogs. Tonight at The Roof, the Terriers host the Great Danes in a battle of the most atomic dogs in the conference - like the boys when they're out there walkin' the streets, they may compete, but it's nothin' but the dog in the...

MMBOD Jan 10: Terrence Todd - Fairfield

It takes a special breed of player to be mentioned in the G!O!T!N! preview, then go out and have a BOTD-worthy performance. The Fairfield Stags hit a team-record 16 three-pointers last night in a victory at Rider, two of which were directly made by the sweet and streaky Mr. Todd, and many were creat...

MMBOD Jan 9: Dereke Tipler - Arkansas State

Arkansas is a large battlefield - 52,068 square miles. So the Sun Belt's Trojan-Indian war for the Natural State is pretty big stuff, and has produced some memorable scrums in years past. Last night's Battle of Wounded Knee was no exception yet an exceptionally good one, as injury-depleted Arkansas ...

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The Woods

Once you give over your entire identity to a sport, the lines that separate the game and real life start to disappear. Welcome to The Woods, a new 22-essay anthology from TMM's Season 16.