As Stout Bowl Sunday arrives, it be additionally a reminder on the calendar that college basketball’s received next.
Yes, Change Sunday is precise five weeks away, and the sport is chock-crammed with storylines between two dominant teams in No. 1 UConn and No. 2 Purdue at the tip, and no shortage of parity after that pair.
The Huskies ran their winning run to 12 with an 89-64 grasp over Georgetown on Saturday. Connecticut has outscored its Astronomical East opponents by an common of 12.1 aspects per game, and with a 12-1 file in league play, Dan Hurley’s crew appears to be like to be coasting to a convention trendy-season crown. In all likelihood, UConn will receive a 13-game winning run – after playing at DePaul on Wednesday – real into a top-10 showdown with pink-hot Marquette on Saturday at 3 p.m. ET on FOX.
Within the period in-between, Purdue performed a revenge sweep over rival Indiana with a 79-59 grasp on Saturday night at Mackey Area. The 22–2 Boilermakers personal received eight straight games, and notched a pair of 20-plus level wins over the Hoosiers within the same season for the first time since 1933-34. Zach Edey posted his thirteenth game with a minimal of 20 aspects and 10 rebounds this season, while the Boilers’ improved supporting solid modified into once as marketed, inserting collectively a stretch of constructing 7-of-12 from 3-level land. I wrote about Purdue’s dominant grasp over the Hoosiers and why Matt Painter’s program desires to be preferred:
Here are five other takeaways from the weekend:
1. When Arizona is on, the Wildcats hit a equipment that very few teams can match.
Appropriate Forty eight hours eradicated from a dramatic and emotional triple-time previous regulation grasp at Utah, the Wildcats entered Boulder towards a Colorado crew that modified into once firmly on the bubble and in need of a résumé-boosting grasp. The Cats had not received a boulevard game over the Buffaloes since 2015, as Colorado is paired with Utah in as tricky of a boulevard weekend as there may be within the Pac-12.
On Saturday night, Arizona confirmed all of us why it will grasp a nationwide championship if every thing is clicking. The Wildcats picked aside the Buffaloes, whose protection modified into once nonexistent in a ninety 9-79 rout. When Tommy Lloyd’s crew is clicking, it be truly fun basketball to search and their offense is as appropriate as any individual’s within the country. North Carolina switch Caleb Love led five in double-figures with 19 aspects, while senior Pelle Larsson stayed hot with 18 aspects on 7-of-11 from the bottom, and Oumar Ballo dominated the paint with 16-and-13. It modified into once precise a demolition in Boulder, to not level to, Arizona forced 16 turnovers and displayed its speedily hands defensively while turning them into like a flash atomize aspects. A hat tip to the Cats, who swept the boulevard weekend and bolstered their Quadrant 1 file to 7-3. That’s appropriate for the 2nd-most Q1 wins in America.
2. Tyler Kolek is making an All-American and Astronomical East Player of the 365 days push as Marquette has received seven in a row.
Obtain out about out, America. Here arrive the Golden Eagles. Shaka Effectively-organized’s crew overcame a 47-38 halftime deficit on Saturday to beat St. John’s, 86-75. How did they form it? Within the abet of a degree guard who talks and truly backs it up. Reigning Astronomical East Player of the 365 days Tyler Kolek set aside aside up 27 aspects, 13 assists and seven rebounds within the victory, making some historical previous within the technique. In step with college basketball reference, Kolek is the first high-primary participant since 2010 to submit a stat line of 27-7-13.
At some stage within the seven-game winning run, Kolek is averaging 20 aspects and 10 assists per game. David Joplin has additionally scored in double-figures in seven straight contests, making strides in filling that role as a stretch-forward that Olivier-Maxence Prosper occupied closing 365 days.
The Golden Eagles are reminding us why they are a Final Four contender.
3. Lamont Paris shall be my nationwide coach of the 365 days recently as South Carolina is 21-3.
The Gamecocks were picked unnecessary closing within the stacked Southeastern Conference. They did not personal a giant title-studded recruiting class, and after an 11-21 first 365 days for head coach Lamont Paris and a failed season with headliner freshman GG Jackson, it known as for recalibration. And boy, personal the Gamecocks improved, posting the nation’s ultimate turnaround and greatest surprise story.
The revelation as of late has been 6-foot-7 freshman Collin Murray-Boyles, a recruit ranked exterior the tip 100 within the composite rankings who has broken out for a mixed 63 aspects within the closing three games – wins over Vanderbilt, Ole Miss and Georgia. He went off for 31 within the 75-60 victory over Vandy on Saturday.
With fifth-365 days transfers B.J. Mack and Ta’lon Cooper, alongside with one more backcourt outmoded in Meechie Johnson, South Carolina’s abilities and DNA of fellows twiddling with a chip on their shoulder and in search of to explain themselves at the potential-convention stage has proven.
The metrics would perchance presumably well not love this crew, as they currently sit at No. forty five in KenPom, nonetheless a 21-3 crew out of the SEC is getting ranked within the tip 10 by me.
The Spartans would perchance presumably well not be ranked, nonetheless in a game they honestly, truly wanted on Saturday afternoon in East Lansing, Tom Izzo’s crew sent a reminder that going by them this time of 365 days is on the total problematic for opponents.
Michigan Relate confirmed the compose of performance we thought we would search extra of this season, and it comes at the appropriate time for a doable March push after an 88-80 grasp over Illinois on Saturday.
It modified into once handiest fitting that outmoded guard AJ Hoggard, who has exemplified the u.s.and downs of the Spartans’ season, set aside aside up his most difficult act of the advertising campaign, main four in double-figures with 23 aspects, five assists and no turnovers. Within the period in-between, fellow senior Malik Corridor modified into once two off his season high with 22 aspects.
When the Spartans will not be over-reliant on Tyson Walker and derive some steadiness offensively, they’re as appropriate as any individual within the Astronomical Ten not named Purdue. Why modified into once Saturday’s grasp so huge? Michigan Relate entered the contest with a 2-7 file towards Quadrant 1 teams. They received a third Q1 victory and personal zero inferior losses. I’d divulge they’re abet within the 8-9 discussion within the NCAA Tournament characterize. Now, can they string collectively a trail and explain themselves on the boulevard? Highway games at Penn Relate and Michigan (Saturday, FOX Primetime Hoops) are very manageable opportunities.
5. Designate Few would perchance presumably well need saved his Gonzaga NCAA Tournament run on Saturday.
The Zags entered Lexington on the exterior having a stumble on in for the NCAA Tournament, sitting in Mike Decourcy’s “Next Four Out.” They can’t be the leisure worse than the “First Four Out” after taking down Kentucky, 89-85, at Rupp Area. The Wildcats suffered their third straight defeat at Rupp, marking the first time that is ever occurred.
But on the flip side, the Bulldogs saved a season that modified into once on life pork up. Few has taken Gonzaga to the NCAA Tournament yearly since he took over in 1999, nonetheless a 2-5 Quad 1 file is why there may be doubt, alongside with the dearth of résumé opportunities within the WCC.
Graham Ike modified into once as appropriate as he’s been all 365 days with 23 aspects to lead all scorers within the grasp over Kentucky, while Anton Watson and Nolan Hickman every scored 17. Ryan Nembhard shot 1-for-9 from the bottom, nonetheless he advised the offense with 9 of the crew’s 15 assists. This Zags crew, important like the Michigan Relate crew that we talked about above, has dealt with being too predictable on offense this season and removed from appropriate sufficient on the perimeter. They handiest shot 4-for-18 from deep on Saturday nonetheless scored 89 aspects. That’s additionally an indictment on Kentucky’s protection, which is willing to consume the Wildcats abet from reaching their doable in March Insanity and is a indispensable danger.
But a minimal of for Saturday, Few and the Zags were in a position to grind out a grasp that we now personal arrive to query over time, nonetheless have not considered sufficient of this season.
1. UConn (22-2)
2. Purdue (22-2)
3. Arizona (19-5)
4. Marquette (18-5)
5. Kansas (19-5)
6. Houston (21-3)
7. North Carolina (19-5)
8. South Carolina (21-3)
9. Tennessee (17-6)
10. Duke (18-5)
11. Baylor (17-6)
12. Iowa Relate (18-5)
13. Illinois (17-6)
14. Auburn (19-5)
15. Alabama (17-7)
16. Creighton (17-7)
17. Saint Mary’s (20-6)
18. Oklahoma (18-6)
19. Utah Relate (20-4)
20. Colorado Relate (19-5)
21. Dayton (19-4)
22. Virginia (19-5)
23. Indiana Relate (22-3)
24. BYU (17-6)
25. Washington Relate (18-6)
John Fanta is a nationwide college basketball broadcaster and creator for FOX Sports. He covers the sport in a diversity of capacities, from calling games on FS1 to serving as lead host on the BIG EAST Digital Community to providing commentary on The Self-discipline of 68 Media Community. Prepare him on X at @John_Fanta.
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