Monday, December 19, 2011

News On The Horizon 12/19/2011

College Hoops Week in Review: Reggie Hamilton, Florida and a thriller in Indianapolis--Ballin' is a Habit
2012 Crossroads Classic: Double The Fun--SB Nation Indiana
Kameron Woods Wins the StatSheet Horizon Freshman of the Week - December 19th, 2011--Butler Blue Fever

Utah Jazz: Millsap to sit tonight's preseason opener out; Okur to start--Deseret News

Second-year swingman Gordon Hayward, who's also performed well this fall, could still end up in the starting lineup — a spot he finished in late last season.

Utah Jazz trying to settle point guard situation--Salt Lake Tribune

The Jazz have two young wing players in Gordon Hayward and Alec Burks who handle the ball well enough to play some point guard.

Still, Corbin believes in having three pure point guards on the roster, especially with the coming rigors of a shortened season.

It’s A Love/Hate Relationship: Volume V--Rush The Court

I LOVED….Butler’s under-the-radar win against Purdue. Look, this isn’t a great Butler team. They’re 5-6, and they’re not reaching the NCAA Final again (I promise…). But it’s these normal, ho-hum wins against quality big-conference teams that continue to legitimize Brad Stevens’ squad as much as the crazy Cinderella wins in March. That’s how you keep stealing recruits from the big boys in the long run.

Five Up and Five Down from Saturday’s college hoops slate--The Dagger

It was hard to trim the lists down for this week's installment of 'Five Up, Five Down.' Outside of what we have already highlighted this weekend on The Dagger, here is a look at some whose stock got a bump and whose took a hit on Saturday.

UP: Butler

The Bulldogs (5-6) needed this one in the absolute worst way, and they got it with a combination of great second-half defense and a bit of luck in edging Purdue (9-3) in Indianapolis, 67-65. After the Boilermakers shot 55.6 percent from the floor in the first half, they went just 6-of-29 after the break (20.7 percent). They were out-scored by 13 after the break, with the final bucket coming on an Andrew Smith tip-in in the closing seconds. That win doesn't make up for a trio of early season, in-state losses to Ball State, Valparaiso and Evansville, but it gives Butler a big boost as it heads out for a pre-Christmas road swing to face Gonzaga (Tuesday) and Stanford (Thursday).

Katz's five observations from the week--College Basketball Nation Blog

Before we begin a new week of games, here are five thoughts from the past seven days:

1. Butler’s comeback over Purdue at the Crossroads Classic on Saturday was a reminder of just how special the Bulldogs have been in the past three years. Of course the talent isn’t the same with this group and there are no for-sure NBA players on the roster these days. But this team has terrific desire and absolutely no quit. Butler has a long road ahead to be an NCAA team again. The Horizon League is very competitively balanced and you certainly can't consider the Bulldogs the favorites in a group that includes Cleveland State, Milwaukee and Detroit (with Eli Holman back). But Butler isn't going away. That much is for sure.

Ten Games to Watch: Week of Dec. 19--The Arena Pulse

Butler (5-6) at Gonzaga (7-2), Tuesday (12/20): 9 p.m.

Two of the nation's premier mid-majors will do battle in a recently-decided upon home-and-home series that will begin on Tuesday and continue next year in Indianapolis. Gonzaga is the host squad on Tuesday and the higher-ranked of the pair, yet Butler is fresh off a come-from-behind win over Purdue and looking to maintain its current momentum despite an up-and-down start to the season. The Zags have won back-to-back games and currently hold a 4-1 mark at home this season.

New-look Butler rediscovers old ways--College Basketball Nation Blog
Purdue Gives Away Another. This Time Butler is the Recipient--Boiled Sports
Men's Basketball Games of the Week 12/19 - 12/22--College Sports Madness

BUTLER AT GONZAGA (9 p.m. Tuesday at McCarthey Athletic Center in Spokane, Washington)

A team like Butler (5-6) might not be included in a heavy-duty matchup against an NCAA darling, but Butler proved on Saturday it’s still a force to reckon following its last-second 67-65 win over Purdue. The loss broke Butler’s three-game losing streak and prevented the Bulldogs from suffering the humiliation of losing to all the teams in the state (its losses are to Evansville, Louisville, Indiana, Valparaiso, Xavier and Ball State). Andrew Smith’s tip-in with one second to go was the difference in this game. Gonzaga (7-2) has wins over Oral Roberts and Arizona in the last five days, the latter win triggered partially by Elias Harris’ 25 points and eight rebounds. Butler could pull a shock if Gonzaga isn’t prepared, so keep an eye on this game and don’t be surprised if it’s featured as an upset on that night’s sports highlights.

Crossroads Classic A Roaring Success--SB Nation Indiana
Butler's Smith named Horizon League Player of the Week--The Indy Star
Looking at Butler over 9-year span--Indy Star Butler Insider
Butler (5-6) Takes On Gonzaga (7-2)--Butler Blue Fever
Andrew Smith Named League Player of the
Butler Makes First Visit To

SEC Basketball: Surprises and Disappointments So Far--A Sea Of Blue


Vandy has been a significant disappointment, not so much for the close loss at Louisville, but for dropping two games to inexplicably weak opponents at home, namely the Cleveland St. Vikings and, just yesterday, the Indiana St. Sycamores in Memorial Gymnasium. Compound that with a solid whipping by the Xavier Musketeers in Nashville, and the start for the Commies has been anything but inspiring.

Orlando Magic’s Stan Van Gundy praises extention of Miami Heat’s Erik Spoelstra--Miami Herald


There were several highlights, but the most memorable was a dunk in the second quarter by the only 18-year veteran in the arena. Heat rookie point guard Norris Cole triggered the play with a bounce pass and veteran forward Juwan Howard showed off his vertical with a solid dunk.

Heat crush Magic 118-85 in preseason opener--Miami Sun-Sentinel

So what can you take out of the first exhibition that also is the second-to-last exhibition?

That Dwyane Wade and LeBron James in attack mode are the reason why something as mundane as this filled 20,000 seats Sunday at AmericanAirlines arena.

That first-round pick Norris Cole could well be a first-year contributor.
While Cole proved Thursday's intra-squad scrimmage breakout was no fluke, dishing out eight assists, albeit with four turnovers, Chalmers also had his moments running the offense, shooting 3 of 5 from the field for eight points, with five assists and no turnovers.

Non-BCS Power Pyramid, Week 5, Festivus Edition--Eye On College Basketball

Bottom of the Feats of Strengths Pile
15. Cleveland State (10-1). A Sentence: Vikings had a week off to prepare for a BCS team tonight. A Statistic: Nobody’s forcing turnovers more frequently than CSU, swiping it 29.8 percent of the time. Great rate. The Schedule: at South Florida Monday; vs. Sam Houston State Thursday.

USF Basketball Mixology - Game 11, Cleveland State--Voodoo Five
USF-Cleveland State Preview, Or JAWANZA!--Voodoo Five
Is Norris Cole elevating Mario Chalmers' game?--Miami Herald
Cleveland State Vikings: Get live Twitter updates from tonight's game at South Florida--Cleveland Plain Dealer
Cleveland State (10-1) Takes On South Florida (6-5)--Vikings Ball

King's five observations from the week--College Basketball Nation Blog

2. Detroit will contend for the Horizon League title. Don’t let the Titans’ 5-8 record fool you. With previously suspended center Eli Holman back in the mix, this is a scary, scary team. Just ask Alabama and Mississippi State, each of whom squeaked by with single-digits wins against Detroit last week. Also, the Titans’ tough nonconference schedule should pay off during conference play.

The NC-Double-Eh Stat Leaders - Week 6--Raptors HQ

Free Throw % (minimum two made free throws per game)

Nik Cochran, Davidson - .941
Ty Nurse, Texas Tech - .879
Justin Edwards, Maine - .864
Christian Kabongo, New Mexico State - .845
Kevin Pangos, Gonzaga - .822
Devoe Joseph, Oregon - .818
Robert Sacre, Gonzaga – .795
Melvin Ejim, Iowa State - .786
Kris Joseph, Syracuse - .784
Jason Calliste, Detroit - .750

Tyler Murray, Wagner – 32.5
Andrew Nicholson, St. Bonaventure – 31.6
Harouna Mutombo, Western Carolina – 30.9
Ty Nurse, Texas Tech – 30.7
Kevin Pangos, Gonzaga – 30.3
Justin Edwards, Maine – 30.0
Hernst Laroche, New Mexico State – 29.6
Christian Kabongo, New Mexico State – 29.6
Jason Calliste, Detroit – 29.2
Three tied with 29.0 minutes per game.

McCallum Named Cousy Award

Titans Poach
Detroit Welcomes Eastern Michigan On

UIC (3-7) Battles Western Illinois (4-3)--Flame Fanatic
Flames Return Home to Face Western Illinois Monday

Flames Set to Host Roosevelt Lakers on

Law, Hambric Power Loyola Past Nebraska Omaha,

No. 18/15 Green Bay Hosts Ball State Tuesday at 7

Panthers erase 16-point deficit--Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Postgame Report: Milwaukee vs. Toledo--Panther Blog Zone
Panthers Complete Impressive Comeback To Claim Win Over

Black and Gold Statbreak – Dec. 19th--PantherU
UWM Obliterates UNO, Improves to 9-3 Ahead of Cross-Town Contest @ MU--Milwaukee Panther Tracks
Williams A Candidate For Bob Cousy Point Guard Of The Year

Scorer's table: UNLV dominates Illinois--Run The Floor

3. Oakland's Reggie Hamilton did everything against Valparaiso, including knocking down a deep two at the buzzer for the victory. Hamilton was 9-14 on 2s, 5-10 on 3s and 8-11 from the line on his way to a career high 41 points. He also had 4 rebounds, 3 assists, 4 steals and 4 turnovers. In short, he was everywhere. Oakland is now 8-4 and looks to be one of the contenders in the very deep Summit League.

A Rivalry Renewed--The Mid-Majority
Mutka: VU's Capobianco roots ex-IU teammates--The Post-Tribune
Coming off Oakland loss, Valpo looks to regroup at NIU--The NWI Times
Valparaiso (7-4) Goes Up Against Northern Illinois (0-10)--Valpo Daily
Valpo Heads to Northern Illinois For Tuesday

Shorthanded VU women notch road victory--The Post-Tribune
Lady Crusaders snap nine-game road losing skid at Ball State--The NWI Times
Valpo Closes Non-Conference Play Hosting Eastern Illinois

WSU women's basketball rolls past Longwood--Dayton Daily News
Women Roll Past

Wright State plagued by slow starts--Dayton Daily News
Preview: Idaho (7-4) at Wright State (4-8)--Dayton Daily News
Slow starts continuing to hurt Wright State in 2-4 December--Wright State University Sports
Wright State (4-8) Goes Up Against Idaho (7-4)--Rowdy Review

Middlebrooks rallies YSU past Akron--Youngstown Vindicator
Middlebrooks helps YSU top Akron--Mahoning Valley Tribune Chronicle
Middlebrooks' Late Heroics Caps YSU's Comeback vs.
Kenya Middlebrooks Named Horizon League Player of the

Women's Basketball Teams Have a Perfect Weekend--Horizon League Network

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