Serving up an order of the usual.. 15 nuggets on last night's action:
1. What's the deal with NC State? The numbers of the returning "Big 4" have fallen off the table. Ben McCauley's dropped from 14 ppg to 4 ppg. Brandon Costner's dropped from 17 to 11. Gavin Grant's dropped from 15 to 10. At least Courtney Fells is about the same.
2. Their starting point guard was out, the backup was 0-5 from the floor and had just 3 assists.. and UNC still won by 11. That's the sign of a solid team.
3. Jon Diebler's taken a lot of guff for his poor shooting start, so it was good to see him hit a few baskets (even if he didn't call bank at the half-time buzzer). Still, its not like 5-14 from three is blistering.. just the standards have dropped so low.
4. Darren Collison played for the first time last night, which is bad news for UCLA opponents. The Bruins were already 6-0 without him, and now they'll only get better.
5. Also of interest at UCLA is Alfred Aboya's new glasses. Athletes seem so much cooler once they put on a pair of ridiculously bright sport glasses.
6. UMASS set an all-time high for a visitor at the Carrier Dome, scoring 107 points last night. Gary Forbes led the way with 23 points and 7 assists. The senior's taken his game to a new level this year, averaging 23 ppg after 6 games.
7. At least the Big Ten managed a few wins against the ACC this week. One of them being Penn State's 68-64 home win over Virginia Tech. Nothing terribly interesting to note about that, but Va Tech does have a noteworthy freshman in Jeff Allen. He might not get national pub like some other guys, but the strong DC product is averaging a very solid 15 and 8 on the season.
8. Miami didn't even take part in the competition against the Big Ten.. and they're 6-0. Another reason why the ACC is so superior.
9. Rex Walters returned to Kansas last night with FAU. The only problem for FAU was that he's their coach and not a player..
10. Kent State destroyed SLU last night 81 to 40, one of the worst losses in Rick Majerus' long career. The Billikens hit just 14 shots all game, including an 0-11 from downtown.
11. Even though Miami (OH) ultimately blew what seemed like a sure win, up 33-18 at the half over Dayton.. kudos need to go out to Michael Bramos. His first half last night might end up being the best half of the year. He had 25 points and 7 threes.. in the first half. The junior ended up with a career-best 36 and 9 threes.
12. Another guy who was on fire from three last night was DePaul's Draelon Burns, who was 8-8 from long-range. The Demons needed a win in the worst way. They were coming off a disastrous loss to NC A&T, and were in danger of dropping to 1-3.
13. Last night was the 100th meeting between Fordham and Manhattan, and we learned what we already knew, that both teams are pretty mediocre. The Rams won 66-57, stopping a 3-game losing streak.
14. Tough blow for LSU potentially losing Tasmin Mitchell for the year, but at least it didn't stop them from beating Nicholls State.
15. Did anyone see the video of Bob Knight apparently shooting on someone's lawn. The guy who took those shots was a real Scorsese..