The series of events that would underline the Huskies' pulling away in an 85-68 victory began with Gant forcing a bad pass inside to Aziz N'Diaye, resulting in a turnover. But instead of sulking and lazily getting back on defense, Gant hustled to the other end and blocked a Kevin Parrom shot...which was then kept inbounds by a diving Thomas. Wait for one of the premier point guards in America to get back into play...give him the ball and watch him go to work.
While much of the country was caught up in the hoopla that was the BCS Championship Game, an amazing comeback was taking place at Penn State. The Nittany Lions looked to be well on their way to their first Big Ten win of the season, leading a cold-shooting Michigan at the half 31-16. But if you're familiar with John Beilein-coached teams you know that at the snap of a finger they can heat up from the field. And that's exactly what happened in the second half, as the Wolverines outscored their opponents 48-24 in the final twenty minutes on their way to a 64-55 victory.
Robert Morris (21-10, 15-3 NEC) captured its second straight regular season title and eighth in program history, finishing three games ahead of Mount St. Mary's, Sacred Heart and Long Island.
America East: Despite their loss at Binghamton on Monday night it was a good week for Stony Brook, who won games at Air Force and defending America East champ UMBC. Junior Muhammad El-Amin shared the conference Player of the Week award with New Hampshire's Alvin Abreu, and freshman Bryan Dougher was named America East Rookie of the Week. While El-Amin accounted for 19.5 points and 4.0 rebounds in the two wins, Dougher averaged 20.5 points per game.
The final days of 2008, for most of the teams in the area (save the Ivies and NJIT), mean a transition into full-time conference play. Some schools still have a game or two outside of conference play later in the season, but for the most part it's all about focusing on the direct way of getting to the NCAA Tournament. Big East play begins early this week, and despite a big win over FDU Seton Hall fans have to wonder what the opener at Syracuse will bring for a team that lacks bodies inside. St.