...says Denzel Valentine of Big Ten Tourney favorite MSU, which is 5-7 in its last 12 games. Cumong, man.
2014 is not 2013
RPI Effect Only Teams:
UMass-Lowell (5-14) Beat Maine, but lost to New Hampshire. I’m assuming this was hockey. Houston Baptist (4-12) had a rough Bayou-centric week, losing home games to New Orleans and Southeastern Louisiana. At this point, you probably aren’t even reading this section because who cares. But I’m still writing. South Carolina State (7-13) beat Norfolk State, but lost to Hampton. I’m tempted to call this section “a tree falling on a blog when a 402 error knocks out the servers.” Coppin State (7-13) lost to North Carolina Central, but beat North Carolina A&T, and are a middle-of-the-pack MEAC team, which is probably best-case scenario.
Long Beach State (7-12) beat Cal State Northridge. Purple monkey dishwasher. Holy Cross (11-9) is on a four game winning streak, beating Lafayette and Navy. Inflammable and flammable mean the same thing. Charlotte (12-7) lost to Louisiana Tech and Rice, though given the last week, Michigan’s loss to the 49ers has shifted from “resume anchor” toward “amusing anomaly indicating the unpredictable nature of sports.” Resume. Résumé. Ah, better. Vive Napoleon! Allons enfants de la patrie, le jour de gloire est arrivé.
Big Sorts of Teams
#16 Iowa State (15-4, 3-4 Big 12)
This week: Beat Kansas State (81-75); Lost to Kansas (92-81)
Somehow, the bracket gurus still have Iowa State as a 4-seed. You figure it out.
Florida State (13-6, 4-2 ACC)
This week: Lost to Duke (Many-Few); Lost @ NC State (74-70)
Yikes, this week. Florida State has fought its way down to the bubble. For some reason, they have been terrible on the defensive glass; they’re dead last in the ACC, losing 40.8% of rebounds to their conference opponents. I wonder if this will come into play against…
#23 Dook (17-4, 6-2 ACC)
This week: Splattered Florida State (78-56); Beat Pitt (80-65)
Duke is hitting on all cylinders, beating KenPom’s #13 and #22 teams by a combined 37 points, with the 15 point win over #13 Pitt coming on the road. In possibly the most amazing stat I have seen all year, Duke grabbed 27 OFFENSIVE rebounds (to FSU’s 24 TOTAL rebounds). That is an OR% of 61.4%. A Duke miss was way more likely to end in Duke hands than in Seminole hands. And FSU, as I have been reminding you weekly, is huge. Jabari Parker had 10 offensive boards. That is how you beat a quality opponent by 22 despite shooting 10-39 (25.6%) from INSIDE the arc. Mind: bottled.
#1 Arizona (21-0, 8-0 PAC 12)
This week: Beat Colorado (69-57); Beat Utah (65-56); Beat Stanford (60-57)
Arizona is going to walk away with the PAC 12, and could probably sleepwalk into a 1-seed. So nothing has changed.
Stanford (13-7, 4-4 PAC 12)
This week: Lost to UCLA (91-74); Beat USC (79-71 OT); Lost to Arizona (60-57)
Stanford is riiiiiiiight on the bubble right now, and a win over Arizona would have been worth an incredible amount to the committee. They’ve still got a shot, but their golden ticket may have just escaped.
[The Big Ten after the Jump]
Should old B-Dub bowls be forgot,
and never brought to mind?
Should old TFLs be forgot,
in days of auld lang syne?
It's a brand new year full of not last year. Let's enjoy it.
RPI Effect Only Teams:
UMass-Lowell (2-12) picked up their first win over a D1 team. South Carolina State (4-9) played South Carolina close but lost. Houston Baptist (3-11)… don’t ask. are below the 300 mark to KenPom, and Coppin State (4-10) lost by only 2 points to Towson, but remains in a really really sketchy part of Baltimore. Long Beach State (4-10) were actually just down two points with five minutes left to Missouri, but couldn’t close the deal. Holy Cross (6-8) lost a very patriotic week, dropping games to Boston and American. Charlotte (9-4) downed North Carolina A&T.
Big Sorts of Teams:
#9 Iowa State (14-0, 2-0 Big 12)
This week: Beat Texas Tech (73-62); Beat #7 Baylor (87-72)
Iowa State is now the second-best team on Michigan’s non-conference schedule, both in the polls and on KenPom. The Cyclones dismembered Baylor at the Hilton Center. They led the entire second half, pulling away late. Point Guard DeAndre Kane had a monster game, going for 30 points, 9 assists, and 8 rebounds.
This was the start of an absolutely brutal stretch for ISU. They play Texas, Oklahoma State, Kansas State, Kansas twice, and Oklahoma twice in the next thirty days. The Big 12 is pretty good this year.
Florida State (10-4, 1-1 ACC)
This week: Lost to Virginia (62-50), Beat Clemson (56-41)
FSU dropped from 24th to 39th in KenPom on the heels of a home loss to Virginia. They shot only 30.8% from the field and had 16 turnovers to only 8 assists. Weirdly, they only got 14 shots out of their front court, making only 5. Maybe they forgot that being really tall helps, or they thought they had an unfair disadvantage being so very very tall.
#16 Dook (12-3, 1-1 ACC)
This week: Lost to Notre Dame (79-77); Beat Georgia Tech (79-57)
|This guy > Jabari Parker|
The Blue Devils lost to Tom Crean Memorial Disappointing-NCAA-Tournament-Run Award Winner Mike Brey and the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, 79-77. Jabari Parker scored only 7 points on 2-10 shooting. He was outscored by ND freshman Steve Vasturia. Do you have enough canned goods? You should probably purchase more canned goods.
Duke did manage to squeak by ACC palate-cleanser Georgia Tech by 22 points.
#1 Arizona (16-0, 3-0 PAC 12)
This week: Beat Washington State (60-25(!)); Beat Washington (71-62), beat UCLA (79-75)
Washington State isn’t very good. They’re basically Northwestern, but farther west and not as good academically. And sure, they have the offensive efficiency of a cat chasing a laser pointer dot. But they held the #1 team in the country to 28 points in the first half… and still trailed by 21 points. Only one Cougar had more than one make from the field; Junior Longrus scored his team-high six points on 2-for-6 shooting. Amazingly, no one on either team made more than three shots or had more than three assists all night, and the game featured only one player in double-digits (Caleb Tarczewski had 11). For the PAC-12, this game was very B1G.
Stanford (9-4, 0-1 PAC 12)
This week: Lost to Cal (69-62)
Stanford fell out of the KenPom top 50 after a 7-point home loss to rival Cal. This isn’t a huge problem for Michigan given Michigan’s win over Minnesota and the continued improvements of Iowa State. Still, Stanford being good would be good.
[Jump for the Big Ten]