November 20, 2012

11/20/2012 - 8:36am

Most hardcore college basketball fans know the story of tiny Division II school Chaminade having one of the most historic upsets in NCAA history. The year was 1982 and the 900 person school was facing off against Virginia. Two things Virginia had were a #1 ranking and a 7-4 center named Ralph Sampson, who was en route to his third straight national player of the year award. They left with a 77-72 defeat in Hawaii, one that the national media had a hard time believing and goes down as one of the ultimate David versus Goliath stories.

Flash forward to the EA Sports Maui Invitational, an event that Chaminade hosts every year. Going into this years Invitational, Chaminade had a 6-76 record. One always remembers that this school has beaten improbable odds and they did so last night against the Texas Longhorns. In a game that even the Chaminade website had awarded to Texas, the Silverswords won 86-73 in yet another big upset.

Texas is of course missing high profile PG Myck Kabongo, still having his fate decided by the NCAA over a trip he took to visit friend Tristan Thompson in Cleveland. Nonetheless, the Longhorns had defeated two Division I opponents before losing to Chaminade. DeAndre Haskins finished with 32 points and 9 rebounds for the Silverswords in what will be a game he will never forget. Freshman Javan Felix, Myck Kabongo's fill in at the point, finished with 17 points and 5 assists, while Sheldon McClellan chipped in 14. The Longhorns effort was chastised, but all credit given to the giant killers of Chaminade for another impressive upset of a much larger school.

11/20/2012 - 8:11am

Cody Zeller has not had a lot of off nights since arriving in Bloomington, but he definitely was not himself last night in Brooklyn at the Progressive Legends Classic. Taking a physical pounding, Zeller finished with 6 points and 4 rebounds, well below the expectations one carries for a pre-season NCAA player of the year candidate. Despite Zeller's off night, Indiana managed to get past Georgia with a 66-53 win as they pulled away late.

Senior sharpshooter Jordan Hulls nailed some crucial triples down the stretch to finish with 14 points. Meanwhile, junior Victor Oladipo scored a game high 15 points, playing his usual stalwart defense while showing off his high level athleticism. Georgia's big name player, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, finished with 14 points and 6 rebounds while being held to 4-15 FG shooting on the contest.

Georgia used strength more than size to stifle the 6-11 Zeller, who will not get much of a break tonight against a very tough Georgetown team. This could be just an off night for Zeller, just something to monitor to see how he responds to taking some hard fouls, which he did often against the Bulldogs. Luckily Indiana has weapons to make up for it, not to mention experience in Hulls, Oladipo, Will Sheehey and Christian Watford playing big roles. With the target firmly on Indiana's chest, we will see how they respond tonight to a Hoyas team coming off of an impressive victory against UCLA.

11/20/2012 - 7:49am

With his eligibility finally out of limbo and a three game wait, Shabazz Muhammad was chomping at the bit to announce his presence in college basketball. He showed flashes, coming off the bench for 25 minutes, but could not do enough as the Bruins were outplayed by a hungry Georgetown team. Otto Porter showed why some had him as the favorite for Big East player of the year, filling the stat sheet with 18 points, 11 rebounds, 5 assists/blocks and 3 steals in the 78-70 Hoya victory.

Markel Starks had a game high 23 points for Georgetown, being able to convert many of his 4 steals into baskets while also stretching the floor. Georgetown shot 54.5% from the field, including 7-14 from the three point line. Shabazz Muhammad finished with 15 points with only a single rebound in the contest. After a somewhat slow start, he scored 11 points in the 2nd half, many with the game slightly out of reach. Nonetheless, he still displayed that he will be a force for the Bruins once the rust comes off.

UCLA also heavily relied on freshman Jordan Adams, who finished with 22 points. Adams has yet to score fewer than 21 points in a college contest, all while coming off of the bench. While Adams and Muhammad provided some scoring, UCLA had a very difficult time getting it from other places. Kyle Anderson was held scoreless while dishing out 6 assists. The Georgetown zone seemed to stifle Anderson and the Bruins settled for numerous poor outside shots.

Georgetown moves to the final of the Progressive Legends Classic playing #1 Indiana at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. UCLA will face a Georgia team that put a scare into the Hoosiers, yet is only 1-3 on the season. After taking a tough spill in the Georgetown contest, their is no word as to the status of David Wear. These Bruins showed they are susceptible to being beat inside and can struggle when forced to the outside. Georgetown may have their hands full with Indiana, though they showed that they are up for a hard fought contest. John Thompson III with yet another impressive coaching performance with fantastic gritty play coming from do everything Otto Porter, who absolutely stole the show in Shabazz's debut.