Have to take time to comment on the Murray State Belmont game on Thursday night. I was conflicted in that I had the Oregon Arizona game on my mind and was concentrating on that. Then when I had flipped back over to the OVC contest the score was 93-83 in favor of Belmont with 48 seconds left, I figured the Bruins had the game wrapped up. Often the end of games like these actually take 20 minutes despite the clock reading 48 seconds but was prepared for it. Belmont wound up winning 99-96 in a game that may have gone to OT with the Racers missing a 3pt. shot at the buzzer. A good look actually that didn't fall for Murray State. It is interesting to note that had Belmont made free throws, the game wouldn't have got to the point where Murray could have tied it up at the buzzer. Either way an extremely entertaining finish. It's too bad, this year, the OVC will most likely only get one bid to the NCAA's. Too early to predict but both teams are real fun to watch and think the Racers and Bruins are NCAA worthy. Hopefully both programs will make it to the NCAA tournament.
St.Louis wound up with one of those "escape" wins. They only wound up beating LaSalle by a bucket and are very fortunate to get it. Speaking A-10, wouldn't you know St.Joe's? Good win at home against the physical VCU team after calling them out last blog. Texas was probably due for a loss and they did lose by 18 on the road in Manhattan(that's the K-State Manhattan). UNLV keeping it ugly but a win is a win beating the pokes by 2. Vegas has won 5 of 6. Weber State goes to 10-2 in Big Sky play beating Northern Colorado at the Dee last night. I really have a hard time wrapping my head around LIU-Brooklyn's struggles in the NEC. Yesterday they lost at home making them 2-7 in conference play. I mean it's not as if they are losing close games a la LaSalle this year. Very surprised. Long Beach state rebounded with a win last night in Riverside after losing a tough one by 3 in Irvine thursday night. The Beach now goes 6-3 in the Big West. USC lost at home by ten to UCLA. I hope that was another "message" sent by Steve Alford.
SMU. Great win at home to beat the 7th ranked Cincinatti Bearcats last night. A friend of mine was at the game and the Moody Center was Pantera like "electric". I'd like to think that SMU can use this win and push through the American but I can't. It seems that although a "statement" game it was, I don't think it will propel SMU to the NCAA's. Good for Larry Brown and SMU fans but I'd be surprised if the Mustangs go to the NCAA's. More disturbing was the play by play man on ESPNU last night. It was as if he had to keep reminding us about the "historic" performance SMU was putting on. OK, do that but it was so uncomfortable. Hopefully the play by play guy will review the tape, realize it, and not do it again. Perhaps he was caught up in the emotion of it all and maybe he's a SMU guy but I hope the guy comes to and recognizes the overemphasis of his force-feeding, over informing "homer" type of call. Bad job.
UTIP in the front of CUSA at 8-1 while Charlotte is middle of the pack at 5-4. Looking forward to the Creighton St.John's game later tonight. What an opportunity for the Red Storm. Florida Gulf Coast and Mercer(once again) atop the Atlantic Sun at 10-2.