Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Tuesday Morning Recap

The quick version is "not good."

The longer version:

Wisconsin def. Cal (+9.5), 68-56
Cal's first home loss and another step in the direction of Wisconsin being a legit contender for the Duke-Kentucky elite tier. The Badgers only shot .436 from the field (.273 from three), but were still able to pull off a cover by outrebounding Cal 39-29 while holding the Bears to .389 from the field.

Temple def. Kansas (-7.5), 77-52
This was similar to the Miami-Eastern Kentucky game in that it leaves everyone scratching their head and saying, "What?" It makes no sense! But when the underdog shoots .583 from the field and the favorite shoots .321, that makes for a pretty good chance of an upset. And it's not even like Temple is a defensive stalwart - before this game, they gave up about 63 points per game. That's somewhere around the 100th-best in the nation. Your quote of the night for this game, from Temple coach Fran Dunphy: "I think we played about as well as we possibly could have. It was our night."

Wichita State (-19) def. Loyola Marymount, 80-53
Ohio State (-22.5) def. Miami (OH), 93-55
Hey! We got one! Hitting on these two powerhouses against such scrub teams almost feels like stealing. Not that I'm complaining. And for what it's worth, betting on huge spreads like these does make the games incredibly more enjoyable to watch.

Washington (-13.5) def. Tulane, 66-57
How do you shoot .521 from the field, hold your significantly less talented opponent to .317, outblock them 9-1, have comparable measures for rebounding and free throw shooting and just narrowly lose the steals/turnovers battles...and then still not cover?

Providence def. Miami (-1.5), 76-62
I thought we had it at halftime. The game was tied, there were signs of life, and Providence stinks. Flip that whole thing on its head. Miami stinks, and Providence won the second half by two touchdowns. Miami has a week to regroup before they host College of Charleston, so hopefully they don't choke that one away too!

St. John's (-9.5) def. Long Beach State, 66-49
The Johnnies gave you everything you could possibly ask for out of a team in this position. They won the turnover battle 17-7, outshot the 49ers .450-.323, and kept the underdogs to a not-good-enough .318 from three point range. I'm being really nit-picky because they covered and there isn't much they could have done better, but there are two concerns I see from the box score: (1) St. John's basically plays with 5 players and no subs. The starters averages 36.4 minutes each, and the only bench player to play more than 4 minutes was Felix Balamou, who played 9. Rysheed Jordan didn't play because he was sick, but even a 6-man rotation doesn't leave a whole lot of room for errors or foul trouble. (2) Long Beach State had 15 offensive rebounds. 15! Jordan only averages 4.1 rebounds per game, and you'd expect a team with Chris Obekpa and Sir'Dominic Pointer to do better against Temidayo Yussuf, David Samuels, and Branford Jones (who?).

For the night: 3-4

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