Tue, 02/22/2011 - 17:45 — Raphielle Johnson
Usually a concern to play a bit reckless when in his hometown of Philadelphia, Scoop Jardine had no such issues on Monday night in leading Syracuse to a 69-64 win over Villanova at the Well Fargo Center. Jardine made seven of eleven shots from the field, finishing with 20 points along with six assists and four rebounds and fellow Philadelphian Rick Jackson added 18 points and five rebounds. Offensively this contest was a far cry from the first meeting between the two, an 83-72 Villanova win that featured a combined 21 three-pointers made with the Wildcats making 11.
Mon, 02/21/2011 - 19:04 — Raphielle Johnson
While many cite the way in which Villanova (21-6, 9-5) shot the three in their 83-72 win at the Carrier Dome last month, it may have been the foul line that did in Syracuse (22-6, 9-6) on that Saturday afternoon. Jay Wright's team hit 11 of 24 from deep but the Orange were nearly as good, making 10 on 26 attempts. That's where the foul line, and Villanova's ability to get there, made the difference as they knocked down 22 of 24 to Syracuse's 8-for-12 performance.
Sun, 02/20/2011 - 17:19 — Raphielle Johnson
Saturday night's matchup between Illinois and Michigan State didn't set up to be the marquee meeting expected when the season began, but it definitely didn't lack for importance with both teams needing wins to ensure an NCAA Tournament appearance. And in a battle of seniors who needed to step up it was Kalin Lucas who came through, scoring 25 points in Michigan State's 71-67 win over the Illini.
Sat, 02/19/2011 - 08:01 — Raphielle Johnson
One of the more important games of the day doesn't involve a ranked team, but because of the inconsistent nature of both teams they find themselves in need of a victory. Michigan State (14-11, 6-7) hosts Illinois (17-9, 7-6) in an important contest both teams need in regards to their NCAA Tournament hopes. Tom Izzo's had to deal with maddening inconsistency from some of the players expected to be leaders, not to mention the dismissal of backup point guard Korie Lucious that's sapped them of their depth at the point.
Thu, 02/17/2011 - 08:16 — Raphielle Johnson
The game between Purdue and Wisconsin was a big one as the two teams were tied for second place in the Big Ten with matching 9-3 league records. Add in Wisconsin's 66-59 win over the Boilermakers just 15 days prior and the rematch in West Lafayette was even more important for Matt Painter's team. And they rose to the occasion, turning the ball over just four times and limiting the Badgers to 3-for-19 from beyond the arc in winning 70-62.
Wed, 02/16/2011 - 17:45 — Raphielle Johnson
At the most the winner of tonight's game between Wisconsin (19-5, 9-3) and Purdue (20-5, 9-3) becomes the team with the best chance to catch Ohio State at the top of the Big Ten standings. But at the very least a win puts the victor in a good position to earn the two-seed in next month's Big Ten Tournament, a nice reward given the fact that the quarterfinal opponent will have played on the opening Thursday. Wisconsin looks to cap a season sweep of the series, and an important aspect of tonight's game will be their ability to put Saturday's win over Ohio State in the past and move forward.
Wed, 02/16/2011 - 07:08 — Raphielle Johnson
If you haven't paid much attention to Jim Larranaga's George Mason Patriots it's about time you did. The Patriots made quite the statement on Tuesday night, going on the road to whip VCU 71-51 to wrap up at least a share of the CAA regular season title. A win in either of their last two conference games clinches the league outright, and this group is well on their way to their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2008. Ryan Pearson led five players in double figures with 18 points and eight rebounds, and George Mason assisted on 17 of their 23 made baskets.
Tue, 02/15/2011 - 18:17 — Raphielle Johnson
"I'm not going to the NIT. I won't play basketball in the NIT. I'm saying that now. If we lose, and we have to go to the NIT, I will not play."
Those were the words of Kansas State senior guard Jacob Pullen to Kellis Robinett of the Kansas City Star on January 12th, but from that point forward neither Pullen nor the rest of his teammates had done much to avoid such a decision.
Mon, 02/14/2011 - 18:20 — Raphielle Johnson
It's now or never for Frank Martin's Kansas State Wildcats, who have been among the most disappointing teams in America. Having lost at Colorado on Saturday night K-State (16-9, 4-6) is in desperate need of a signature win, and the blessing of being in the Big 12 is that they have multiple opportunities to pick one up. Tonight certainly qualifies with in-state rival Kansas (24-1, 9-1) visiting Bramlage Coliseum, and with Thomas Robinson out and Josh Selby banged up (and likely to sit as well) the Jayhawks will be down in the depth department.
Mon, 02/14/2011 - 08:48 — Raphielle Johnson
Many fans and pundits alike felt that Ohio State's trip to Madison would be the point where they'd suffer their first loss of the season. But after a first half that didn't do much to separate either team those prospects didn't look good as Thad Matta's group went on a 23-6 run to push their lead out to 15 points with 13:21 left in the game. Thankfully for the Badgers Jordan Taylor and company had other ideas, answering with a 30-8 run of their own and eventually going on to win 71-67 at the Kohl Center.