Sunday, November 25
-- Marist lost by 43 Thursday but stunned Vandy 50-33 next day; Red Foxes are 2-3, beating Columbia team that beat Villanova. MAAC road underdogs are 5-12, 3-3 if getting double digits. Clemson made 44% of 3's in 3-1 start, losing only to Gonzaga; Tigers have 11 frosh/sophs out of 13 kids, very young team.
-- UTEP lost its last three games, scoring 53.3 ppg; teams made 49.2% of 3's against Miners in 1-3 start. Vanderbilt scored 47.7 ppg in losing last three games, including 50-33 to Marist Friday; they're shooting 28% from arc, 64% from line and aren't getting to line nearly enough. C-USA road teams are 10-15 against the spread this season.
-- 3-1 Oklahoma held all its opponents to 61 or less points; Sooners are playing their bench 41% of time, searching for combos that work. West Virginia's inexperienced team is 1-2, losing to both teams in final of this event; WVU forces turnovers on 27% of possessions but in halfcourt they're useless, shooting 25% from arc, 62.5% from line.
-- Gonzaga is 5-0, with one win by less than 25 points; three of its five opponents are ranked #82 or better. Davidson was up at New Mexico by 16, lost that game, but beat Vandy/WV to get to final here. Wildcats are in top 25 in country in experience. SoCon road underdogs of 15 or less points are 4-8. WCC road favorites are 3-4.
-- Drexel is huge flop, picked to win CAA but off to 1-4 start, with only win by hoop over Penn; Dragons have two guys out hurt, so depth is an issue, as it is for transfer-laden Rice, which lost first two games here by 18-11 points. Owls lost to a D-2 team by 13, are 0-3 vs D-I teams, with losses by 14-18-11 points.
-- Xavier has five new starters, doesn't sub much; they're shooting 63% inside arc, #1 in country, beat Butler by 15, rexel by 4/ Drake split first four games, losing by 6 at Detroit, by 3 to Cal, two pretty good teams; Bulldogs start two juniors, three seniors, so they're experienced. MVC road underdogs are 10-5 vs spread. A-16 road favorites are 9-6.
-- Georgia Tech has young team that struggles to score, making 16.4% from arc in 3-1 start, but Tulane is best team they've beaten. Udofia is only senior in rotation; his 3-11 from arc leads team. St Mary's got beat by Pacific Friday, after allowing 62.7 ppg in first three D-I wins. ACC underdogs are 6-4 against the spread.
-- Pacific is 2-0 vs top 100 teams, 0-2 vs teams not in top 100, hard to figure; Tigers have all five starters back from LY, but they were 11-19- this is Thomason's last year as coach. Pacific played lot of conference tourneys on this floor, won their share. Cal has an NBA guard (Crabbe); only one of their five wins (5-0) was by less than 11 points.
-- Villanova beat LaSalle the last 10 years, but in OT LY, by 3 the year before; Wildcats beat Purdue in OT, getting gift flagrant foul call to help force OT, then lost next two games, including hideous loss to Columbia (75-57). Explorers followed up good win over Delaware with ugly loss to Central Connecticut. Big East underdogs are 6-7 vs spread.
-- Temple hasn't played in eight days, winning its first two games by 14 points each (Kent State/Rice); Owls beat Delaware 66-63 LY, so they'll take Blue Hens seriously. Delaware has played #10 schedule in country so far, losing two games in NYC by 3-26 to KState-Pitt, but they also have a win at Virginia. CAA road underdogs of 12 or less points: 10-8.
-- Long Beach State lost four starters from LY but overscheduled again; they're 0-3 vs D-I teams, losing by 18 at USC, then getting crushed by UNC/Arizona. 49ers are turning ball over 23% of time. Fresno State won last three games after losing by hoop at Texas, with 66-61 win against Pacific, which looks better now. Bulldogs made 40.3% of shots behind arc in their first four games.
-- USC lost two of three games in Maui, getting crushed by Illinois (was down 31 at half), then beat Texas in OT, lost to Marquette by 8; they're athletic but have 10 transfers, so takes time to develop chemistry. San Diego State won by 16 at Missouri State after losing to Syracuse in wind on battleship. Aztecs beat USC 56-54 last year.
-- St Peter's won at Rutgers/Cornell, then somehow lost at Binghamton, so not sure what to make of team that shoots 52% from foul line- they lost to Seton Hall last 10 years by 13-point average, but it was only nine points LY. Pirates are 4-1, losing to Washington in OT after being down 16 at half; none of teams they've beaten are ranked in top 240.