Sunday, 28 January 2007

What? No Football?

That's right, for the first Sunday in about 5 months, there was no football. Which usually just means that we're getting towards the heart of the basketball season, which is ok by me. So after a full weekend of college basketball, here's my top storylines:

- Punch Stanford's ticket to the Big Dance. It was a pretty good weekend for the Cardinal. On Thursday Stanford handled USC by 15. On Sunday, they overcame a 17 point first half deficit to beat the #3 ranked UCLA, 75-68. It helped that all of UCLA's big men were in foul trouble, which made them almost useless as far as scoring. Arron Afflalo and Darren Collison combined for 39 points, but it wasn't enough to beat Stanford and their hot shooting in the 2nd half. With a signature win like this to up their record to 14-5 (6-3 in conference), Stanford has to be looking good as far as the NCAA Tournament goes, at least at this point.

- LSU, welcome to the bubble. After their 3rd straight loss, LSU is now 13-7 overall, 2-4 in the SEC. Their non-conference victory against Texas A&M is excellent, but their other big win (against Alabama) is looking less impressive by the day. I guess they've missed Darrel Mitchell a little more than everyone thought they would.

- Maybe next year Connecticut. Another Big East loss for them drops them to 13-7 and 2-5 in the conference. But the record isn't as telling as the fact that their best win this year is against St. John's. Their 2nd best win is against either Ole Miss or South Florida, depending on your opinion of the two teams. If the regular season ended right now Connecticut wouldn't make the Big East Tournament.

- Arizona actually might not be that good. North Carolina just annihilated Arizona on Saturday. I know Marcus Williams got hurt and didn't play in the second half. But in the defense of UNC, neither Brandan Wright or Marcus Ginyard did not play at all. The Tar Heels abused Arizona on both ends of the court... offensively they shot over 50% and scored 92 points. Defensively, they forced 20 Arizona turnovers and the Wildcats were 1/23 from downtown. Arizona has not lost 4 of 5 and 5 of 7. If things don't get turned around, they could find themselves on the bubble, surprising as that may have sounded at the start of the year.

- Aaron Brooks, Player of the Year candidiate. After a huge game against an underrated WaSu club, Brooks is averaging 19 points, 4 assists, and 4 rebounds per game for the upstart Ducks, who are now tied atop the Pac-10 standings. Certainly the top 2 candidates are Alando Tucker and Kevin Durant, but that sound you hear might be Aaron Brooks creeping into the race.

What were your thoughts from the weekend?