The Weekly Sports Report

It was another typical week in the wacky, wild world of college basketball. Plenty of upsets, some controversy, and Rick Pitino's medical condition all contributed to an eventful seven days. There was one bit of stability. The #1 team in the country is still the Duke Blue Devils, who won all three of their games to retain the top spot in the rankings.

This week, Duke needs to survive a trip to Tallahassee to play the suddenly dangerous Florida State Seminoles before returning home to meet Georgia Tech. Will the Blue Devils still be #1 this time next week? Stay tuned.

Tuesday
East – Seton Hall ended their two game losing streak with an impressive 74-67 win over #13 Syracuse at Continental Arena. The Pirates' victory also ended the Orangemen's 13 game winning streak as well as a five game losing skein against Syracuse. Seton Hall was strong both offensively and on defense. They shot 52.2% from the field while limiting Syracuse to 42.9%, their 2nd lowest shooting percentage this season. Syracuse did win the battle of the boards, outrebounding the Pirates 39-28. Sophomore Kelly Whitney paced Seton Hall with 21 points, despite converting only 3-9 free throws. He also had a team-high 8 rebounds. Senior PG Andre Barrett and junior SF John Allen each scored 16 points. Junior PF Hakim Warrick led Syracuse with 26 points and 13 boards, but he didn't get much help. The only other player in double figures for the Orangemen was sophomore SG Billy Edelin, who tallied 16. Syracuse PG Gerry McNamara, their major outside shooting threat, was limited to 6 points on 2-10 shooting. He was bothered by a pulled groin and was forced to sit out the final ten minutes of the game… In another Big East contest, Georgetown barely edged St. John's 71-69 on a dunk by senior forward Courtland Freeman with just ½ second remaining. The win ended the Hoyas' 3 game losing streak and kept the Red Storm winless in the Big East (0-5). Freeman played an outstanding game, scoring 18 points with 12 rebounds and a career-high 7 assists. Three other Hoyas were in double figures; Darrel Owens with 15, Brandon Bowman 14, and Gerald Riley 11. St. John's had three players with 14 points; Grady Reynolds, Elijah Ingram, and Kyle Cuffe… In an OOC match-up, present Big East member Boston College nipped North Carolina State of the ACC 66-65 in overtime. Sophomore PF Craig Smith led the ACC-bound Eagles with 20 points and 10 rebounds.

South – In SEC play, #9 Kentucky went into Knoxville and escaped with a 69-68 overtime win over Tennessee. Senior forward Erik Daniels scored 19 points and junior forward Chuck Hayes chipped in with 18 for the Wildcats, who extended their SEC road winning streak to 10 games… In the ACC, #11 Georgia Tech scored an impressive 73-66 road win against #10 Wake Forest. The loss was the 3rd straight for the Deamon Deacons and also snapped their 24 game home winning streak. Junior guard Will Bynum paced the Yellow Jackets with 20 points. Junior forward Vytas Danelius was the leading scorer for Wake Forest with 13… Also in the ACC, Virginia topped Clemson 61-50… In CUSA, Charlotte toppled fading Marquette 84-76, Memphis handled Tulane 85-71, and UAB destroyed South Florida 86-47… In a Big East game, Notre Dame defeated Virginia Tech in Blacksburg 74-63. Junior PG Chris Thomas was the game's leading scorer with 23 points while sophomore PF Torin Francis added 22 points and 16 rebounds. Freshman PG Zabian Dowdell led the Hokies with 18 points.

Midwest – In the Big 12, senior guard Royal Ivey scored 10 of his 24 points in overtime to lead #16 Texas to a 75-69 road win over Missouri. Senior Brandon Mouton added 13 points for the Longhorns, who extended their winning streak over the Tigers to six games… Improving Indiana moved into first place in the Big Ten with a 69-61 road win at Ohio State. The Hoosiers' sophomore guard Bracey Wright led the way with 28 points.

Southwest – In a CUSA contest, DePaul traveled to Fort Worth and defeated TCU 61-54.


Wednesday
East - #3 St. Joseph's had no trouble with Massachusetts, winning at home 92-67. The Hawks are now 16-0, their best start in history. Junior Pat Carroll was the leading scorer for St. Joseph's with a season-high 20 points. The Hawks' dynamic guard duo of Jameer Nelson and Delonte West contributed 13 and 19 points respectively… Also in the Atlantic 10, Duquesne stayed hot with a huge upset win at Rhode Island, 72-55… In a Philadelphia show-down, Temple overcame Penn 73-69… In Big East play, Providence won at home over Villanova 62-56. Friars' star forward Ryan Gomes led the way with 27 points including five 3 pointers. Alan Ray had 21 points for the Wildcats… In an OOC game, West Virginia outlasted Marshall 55-51 in a game played in neutral Charleston. Junior forward John Salley scored 18 points to lead the Mountaineers.

South – Top ranked Duke finally managed to win at Maryland, 68-60. Sophomore SG J.J. Reddick scored a season-high 26 points to key the Blue Devil's victory, their 12th straight. Freshman Luol Deng added 13 points and 12 rebounds for Duke… The ranks of the unbeaten were reduced to two as #5 Louisville won decisively at home against #6 Cincinnati, 93-66. The win was the 14th in a row for the Cardinals, who were led by Taquan Dean and Francisco Garcia who scored 21 and 19 points respectively. Luke Whitehead was also a major factor for Louisville with 18 points and 8 rebounds. The 27 point loss matched the worst ever suffered by Bob Huggins in his 15 seasons at the helm of the Bearcats. Jason Maxiell led Cincinnati with 14 points… In the SEC, #19 Mississippi State upset #17 Florida in Gainesville 79-68. Junior PF Lawrence Roberts, a transfer from Baylor, paced the Bulldogs with 21 points and 14 rebounds… In other SEC games, Alabama scored a big road win at Georgia 45-42, Auburn got by Arkansas 68-63, and Mississippi edged LSU 53-49… In a Big East contest, Darius Rice scored 23 points to power Miami over Rutgers 73-63. Twenty of Rice's points came in the 2nd half. Robert Hite and Guillermo Diaz each had 14 for the Hurricanes. Junior SG Ricky Shields topped the scoring parade for Rutgers with 19 points including six 3 pointers.

Midwest – In the Big 10, Illinois embarrassed Penn State 80-37 and Michigan State topped Northwestern 73-61… In Big 12 play Kansas State won at home over Texas A&M 70-61 and Nebraska whipped Baylor 76-47… In an OOC battle, Iowa State toppled Iowa 84-76… In the Atlantic 10, Dayton scored a 74-66 win over George Washington.

Southwest – In the Big 12, #24 Oklahoma State won at home over Colorado 71-62.


Thursday
South – Florida State overcame a 24 point deficit to stun #7 North Carolina 90-81 in overtime. Senior guard Tim Pickett led the Seminoles with 30 points, including 6 in the extra session. Florida St. trailed throughout the game until soph guard Todd Galloway nailed a 3 pointer with just 7.2 seconds remaining to tie the game and send it to overtime. FSU scored the first 11 points of overtime to put the game away, much to the delight of the fans in Tallahassee who once again stormed the court after the final buzzer. Sophomore Rashad McCants led the Tar Heels with 26 points.

Midwest – In a major upset, Richmond marched into Allen Fieldhouse and left with a 69-68 win over Kansas. Senior guard Tony Dobbins hit a fade away jumper in the lane with one second remaining to give the Spiders the victory. Dobbins had blocked a shot by junior guard Aaron Miles to give the Spiders their final chance. Senior SF Mike Skrocki led Richmond with 23 points and was their only scorer in double figures. Kansas' forward combo of juniors Keith Langford (18 points & 6 rebounds) and Wayne Siemien (14 points & 14 rebounds) was not quite enough to pull out a win. Richmond was 10-26 on 3 point shots, while the Jayhawks were only 2-11. That was enough to overcome Kansas' big edge inside. They outscored Richmond "in the paint" 36-18.

West - #2 Stanford remained unbeaten at 15-0 with a 67-52 home win over UCLA. Senior PF Justin Davis led the Cardinal with 21 points and 5 rebounds. Junior Dijon Thompson was the Bruins' leading scorer with 15… Elsewhere in the PAC 10, #14 Arizona demolished Oregon State 109-75. Sophomore Hassan Adams had a "double-double" for the Wildcats with 20 points and 10 rebounds… Oregon won at Arizona State 83-76 and California edged USC in Berkeley 63-62.


Friday
In the West Coast Conference, #15 Gonzaga won at Portland 80-65. Junior SF Ronny Turiaf led the way for the Bulldogs with a game-high 21 points and senior SG Blake Stepp added 19.


Saturday
East - #1 Duke improved to 16-1 with an OOC win at Georgetown, 85-66. It was the 13th consecutive triumph for the Blue Devils. Sophomore PF Shelden Williams scored a career-high 26 points on 12-15 shooting to lead Duke. Senior PG Chris Duhon added 17 points. Sophomore forward Brandon Bowman had 19 points for the Hoyas… In the Atlantic 10, #3 St. Joseph's more than survived a trip to the frozen wasteland of Olean, N.Y. The Hawks destroyed St. Bonaventure 114-63. St. Joseph's sensational guard combo of Jameer Nelson and Delonte West once again sparked the victory. West scored 21 points and Nelson 19. The Hawks jumped out to a 20-3 lead as the Bonnies missed 17 of their first 18 shots… Elsewhere in the A10, Dayton won at La Salle 77-75, Rhode Island defeated Fordham 75-54, and Massachusetts prevented John Chaney from winning his 700th game by nipping Temple 66-65… In the Big 10, Michigan won at Penn State 69-59… Providence won their 5th straight game, an impressive road victory over #4 Connecticut in Hartford 66-56. The Friars were led as usual by Connecticut native Ryan Gomes. The junior PF poured in 26 points and added 12 rebounds. Even more impressive was the Friars' defense which limited the Huskies to 40.7% shooting, their 2nd lowest performance of the season. They also forced 16 UConn turnovers. Junior center Emeka Okafor was the only player in double figures for the Huskies. He had 19 points along with 13 rebounds… Another Big East team scored an impressive road win as #8 Pittsburgh throttled #13 Syracuse 66-45. Freshman center Chris Taft and junior reserve forward Mark McCarroll each tallied 15 for the Panthers. Junior PF Chevon Troutman added 12 points and a team-high 11 rebounds. Pitt's tenacious defense held Syracuse to 27% shooting (15-55), by far the Orangemen's worst performance of the season. Junior PF Hakim Warrick was the only Syracuse player in double figures. He scored 16 points and added 10 rebounds… Elsewhere in the Big East, West Virginia held off Boston College 65-62 paced by Tyrone Salley's 18 points… Seton Hall struggled to defeat Virginia Tech at Continental Arena 83-76. Sophomore SF J.R. Morris came off the bench to lead the Pirates to victory with 21 points. Senior PG Andre Barrett and soph PF Kelly Whitney each added 18 points. The Hokies' leading scorer was senior SF Bryant Matthews with 17… Rutgers' outside shooting enabled them to defeat St. John's in Piscataway 78-70. The Scarlet Knights hit 10-19 from 3 point range, including 5-5 by freshman guard Quincy Douby who finished with 19 points. The Red Storm dominated inside, outscoring Rutgers "in the paint" 44-20. Senior forward Kyle Cuffe led St. John's with 19 points. The Red Storm is still without a win in Big East play (0-6).

South – In the ACC #7 North Carolina whipped Virginia in Chapel Hill 96-77. They gave up a 13 point 2nd half lead before going on a 26-6 tear to put the game away. Sophomore Rashad McCants led the Tar Heels with 26 points… In other ACC play, North Carolina State upended #11 Georgia Tech 76-72 in Raleigh. The defeat was the Yellow Jackets' 8th straight there. Senior SG Scooter Sherrill led the Wolfpack with 18 points. North Carolina State's star Julius Hodge managed only 2 points before fouling out with just under two minutes left. Will Bynum was the leading scorer for Georgia Tech with 17… #6 Cincinnati rebounded from their pasting by Louisville on Wednesday to throttle Southern Mississippi 83-47 in Hattiesburg. The Bearcats' rout was led by senior guard Tony Bobbitt, who scored 19 points… Also in CUSA, UAB scored an impressive 69-62 upset win at Charlotte and Memphis drubbed Houston 64-48. The Tigers led 31-10 at the half!.. In the SEC #17 Florida defeated Auburn 68-52, #19 Mississippi State handled Georgia 71-58, Mississippi topped Alabama 71-60, and surprising South Carolina improved to 17-2 by beating LSU in Columbia 61-55.

Midwest - #21 Wisconsin won handily over Illinois in Madison, 76-56. Junior guard Devin Harris led the Badger attack with 30 points… Also in the Big Ten Indiana continued their recent improvement, scoring an 86-81 overtime win at Minnesota… Iowa won at home against Ohio State 79-65… In CUSA, Marquette topped DePaul 70-62 and St. Louis easily bested East Carolina 70-47… Missouri of the Big 12 recovered from Tuesday's heartbreaking overtime loss to Texas by smashing Nebraska 72-51… In the Missouri Valley Conference, Creighton scored a 72-63 home win over Illinois State.

Southwest - #18 Texas Tech edged Texas A&M in College Station 80-78 behind 23 points from senior guard Andre Emmitt… #20 Oklahoma stopped Kansas State. in Norman, 61-49… Oklahoma State scored a big upset win on the road. The 24th ranked Cowboys surprised #16 Texas 72-67. Joey Graham had 21 points and 10 boards for Oklahoma State. The Longhorns were awful from the free throw line, going 10-20 including a crucial 2-9 stretch in the final four minutes… In another Big 12 contest, Baylor held off Iowa State 63-59… In the SEC, Arkansas outlasted Vanderbilt 70-62. The fading Commodores lost for the third time in their last 4 games after opening the season at 12-0.

West - #2 Stanford remained unbeaten at 16-0 with a 77-67 win over USC in Palo Alto. Sophomore PG Chris Hernandez led the Cardinal to victory with 18 points, 7 assists, and 5 rebounds… Elsewhere in the PAC 10, Arizona State edged Oregon State 83-79, California topped UCLA 76-62, and Washington won on the road at Washington State 75-62.


Sunday
South - #10 Wake Forest continued their recent slide. The Deamon Deacons were beaten by Florida State 75-70 in Tallahassee. For the Seminoles, this was their 2nd win this week over a Top 10 team. That's the first time in their history they've accomplished this. FSU had defeated #7 North Carolina on Thursday. As he did against the Tar Heels, senior guard Tim Pickett scored all of his points (18) in the 2nd half… In another ACC game, Maryland scored a 65-52 win at Clemson… In an OOC contest, #5 Louisville survived a major scare to win at Tennessee 65-62. The victory was the Cardinals' 15th straight, but they needed a huge 2nd half rally to pull the game out. The Vols were ahead 48-43 with 8:28 remaining when Louisville ran off 12 consecutive points. Sophomore SF Francisco Garcia led the Cardinals with 24 points, but the deciding factor was the strong defensive pressure Louisville put on Tennessee during the final 10 minutes… In the Big East, Villanova came up with a big road win over Miami 76-69.

Midwest - #9 Kentucky of the ACC traveled to South Bend and defeated Notre Dame 71-63. The Irish came back from a double-digit deficit to trail 66-63 with 1:08 remaining. However, the Irish missed their final two shots while Kentucky converted their free throws to seal the win… In the Big 10, #23 Purdue needed overtime to defeat Michigan State at home, 76-70… The only Big 12 contest saw #12 Kansas top Colorado in Lawrence 78-57… In the Atlantic 10, Richmond scored their second big road upset of the week. The Spiders bit Xavier, 53-44.

West - #14 Arizona had no trouble with Oregon, whipping the Ducks 90-66 in Tucson.


Monday
East - Providence continued to roll. The Friars won at home over Georgetown 65-50, their 6th straight victory. Sophomore PG Donnie McGrath led Providence with 18 points. The Hoya's Gerald Riley had 22 points in a losing cause.

Southwest - #16 Texas traveled to Lubbock and nipped #18 Texas Tech 62-61 in overtime. Senior guard Brandon Mouton nailed a long 3 pointer at the buzzer to tie the game at 55. Royal Ivey again was the OT hero for the Longhorns, scoring the winning points on two free throws with 17 seconds left. The Red Raiders had a final chance to win when Texas' Kenny Taylor missed the front half of a one-and one. However, freshman guard Jarrius Jackson missed on a long three point attempt. The loss ended Texas Tech's winning streak at 12.

West – In a Mountain West contest, surprising Air Force improved to 14-2 with a 62-49 triumph at home over Utah. The win was the 12th in a row for the Falcons, who are now 4-0 in the conference. Air Force hasn't had a winning season since 1978!


Basketball News & Notes

Louisville is having great success on the court, but certainly has plenty of turmoil off of it. Assistant Coach Kevin Willard pleaded guilty last week to a DUI charge. The court mandated that Willard undergo alcohol counseling. In a dramatic turn of events, Cardinals' Head Coach Rick Pitino announced yesterday that he's taking an indefinite leave of absence from the team due to an undetermined medical problem. Willard, the son of Holy Cross Head Coach Ralph Willard, will take over the team in Pitino's absence.

Northern Iowa extended the contract of Head Coach Greg McDermott through the 2007-2008 season.

Veteran Head Coaches Jim Calhoun of Connecticut and Phil Martelli of St. Joseph's both suffered embarrassing incidents over the weekend. Calhoun uttered some profanity during a post-game press conference after the Huskies lost to Providence. Martelli got into a verbal exchange with a female St. Bonaventure fan during the Hawks game at Olean, reportedly calling her a "moron" and "nitwit." Both Calhoun and Martelli later issued apologies for their conduct.

The new A.P. Top Ten is as follows. The records listed are through Sunday, January 25th:

1. Duke (16-1)
2. Stanford (16-0)
3. St. Joseph's (17-0)
4. Louisville (15-1)
5. Kentucky (13-2)
6. Connecticut (15-3)
7. Pittsburgh (19-1)
8. Cincinnati (14-1)
9. Arizona (13-3)
10. Gonzaga (15-2)


Football News & Notes

Illinois QB Jon Beutjer was granted a 6th year of eligibility by the NCAA.

Miami announced several changes to their coaching staff. QB Coach Dan Werner was promoted to Offensive Coordinator. Tim Walton was named Secondary Coach and Mario Cristobal returned to his alma mater as Tight Ends Coach. He previously held that job at Rutgers.

North Carolina Head Coach John Bunting named Marvin Sanders as Co-Defensive Coordinator and Secondary Coach.

UCLA raided Pitt for another coach. Dino Babers left his position as the Panthers' Running Backs Coach to tutor the wide receivers for the Bruins.

Arizona and Mike Stoops made it official. The Wildcats signed the ex-Oklahoma Defensive Coordinator to a five year contract as Head Coach.

The Senior Bowl, considered the top post-season college all-star game, was played in Mobile on Saturday. The South defeated the North, 28-10. The game's MVP was North Carolina State QB Philip Rivers, who completed 12-19 passes for 213 yards and 2 TDs. Florida State RB Greg Jones rushed for 44 yards on just 5 carries and scored the other two South touchdowns.

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