Tuesday, March 13, 2012

News On The Horizon 3/13/2012

Sources: Butler eyeing Atlantic 10--ESPN
Utah Jazz-Detroit Pistons: Instant Analysis--Deseret News

The four Utah youngsters — Gordon Hayward, Derrick Favors, Enes Kanter, and Alec Burks — entered the contest averaging a combined 73.7 minutes per game. They totaled just 47 against the Pistons, including a “Did Not Play—Coach’s Decision” for Burks.

Report: Butler interested in joining Atlantic 10 Conference--The Indy Star
Report: Butler eyes move to Atlantic 10--The Indy Star
Clarke prepares for his one season at Butler--The Indy Star
Pluses and minuses of Atlantic 10--Indy Star Butler Insider
Stevens on Graves, transfers and Detroit--Indy Star Butler Insider
Butler to the Atlantic-10. Hold on a Minute. Do the Cons Outweigh the Pros?--Bleacher Report
Tailgate At Butler's CBI Game--ButlerSports.com
Bulldogs Host Delaware In CBI--ButlerSports.com

Miami Heat strong even when two of Big 3 on bench--Miami Herald

The Heat’s best plus/minus lineup is its starting group. But No. 2 is one without Wade or Bosh: It’s James, Udonis Haslem, Mike Miller, Norris Cole and Shane Battier. That group has outscored teams, 180-141, in 78 minutes.

This is a function of James’ greatness and the Heat’s improved bench. As one Heat official said, “look who’s around him now” when James is on the floor without Wade or Bosh to close the first quarter.

With Bosh, the story goes deeper. Last year, he played only 125 minutes without Wade and James, and the Heat was plus-11. Entering Tuesday, the Heat had played 210 minutes with Bosh (but no Wade or James) and had outscored teams by 45. In fact, the Heat’s second-most-used lineup is Bosh, Cole, Battier, Miller and Haslem, which is plus-13 in 118 minutes.

Miami Heat falls to Orlando Magic in overtime--Miami Herald

The Magic’s guard play outperformed Mario Chalmers and Norris Cole.

Cleveland State is NIT-Bound--Cleveland State Hoops

NCAA Tournament Tidbits: 03.12.12 Edition--Rush The Court

Kansas head coach Bill Self is all business as his Jayhawks prepare to face Detroit. In an unusual twist, the 15-seed Titans have a 1-0 advantage over the storied Kansas program in active McDonald’s All-Americans (Ray McCallum, Jr.).

The Other 26: Bracket Analysis, East and Midwest Regions--Rush The Court

A Puncher’s Chance

These teams are unlikely to win their second round game, but if things break the right way, have an outside shot at a win.
Detroit (#15, Midwest) – Do I think Detroit will beat Kansas? No. Do I think they might have a shot? Yes. The Titans started the year in disappointing fashion, hampered in part by the suspension of center Eli Holman. But they finished the season strong, winning eight of their last 10 in the competitive Horizon League and sweeping four in a row in the conference tournament to secure their bid. The keys for the Titans will be their defensive play inside — where the shotblocking combo of Holman and Lamarcus Lowe may be able to contain Thomas Robinson – and their ability to force (and score off of) turnovers out of a Jayhawks team that is sometimes susceptible to them. In the end, I suspect that Detroit’s poor shooting and Kansas’ ability to control the glass on both ends – if nothing else – will prove determinative, but I wouldn’t count the Titans out.

BIAH Bracket Breakdown: Midwest Region--Ballin' is a Habit

Upsets to watch for:

No. 15 Detroit over No. 2 Kansas: Detroit has size and athleticism up front. They have a McDonald's all-american at the point in Ray McCallum. They press and they try to force you to turn the ball over, and we all know about Tyshawn Taylor's propensity for the turnover. Do I think this happens? Probably not. There is a reason Eli Holman is no longer at Indiana, and it's not just because he threw a potted plant at Tom Crean. But Kansas but show up ready to play.
Five players you should know:
Ray McCallum, Detroit: He was a McDonald's All-American in high school that went to Detroit to play for his father. If Detroit has any chance against Kansas, it will be because McCallum goes off.

The 10 first-round NCAA tournament games you can’t miss--CollegeBasketballTalk

10. (2) Kansas vs. (15) Detroit: With Ray McCallum Jr. at the point the Titans have the floor general needed to author an upset, but they’ve also got multiple options inside to help deal with Thomas Robinson. Eli Holman and LaMarcus Lowe are both experienced big men who will offer up challenges to the Jayhawks, especially if Jeff Withey struggles. The Titans are experienced and they’re talented as well, and unlike most high-major teams in a position like Kansas’ the Jayhawks don’t enjoy a huge edge in the depth department.

No. 2 Kansas is on upset watch vs. No. 15 Detroit--CollegeBasketballTalk
Favorites, beware these 10 darkhorses the field of 68--CollegeBasketballTalk

Detroit (No. 15 Midwest)
In the dark: The Titans’ early season struggles killed all the preseason hype that was attached to this team. Playing in a Horizon League known primarily for Butler didn’t help either.

Why they can make a run: They have a surprisingly big and athletic team for the mid-major ranks. Ray McCallum Jr. is a five-star guard and Eli Hohlman is a dominant big-man that should be able to give Thomas Robinson so me trouble. They also have two athletic forwards in LaMarcus Lowe and Doug Anderson.
Tourney distance: They are a No.15-seed, so earning one win would be considered a success. earning that one win against Kansas would have to be considered an even bigger success. Plus, Kansas hsa a penchant for losing to mid-major teams. Maybe the titans can summon some Horizon League magic and become “the new Butler”.

Save the best for last: 5 players rolling entering the tournament--CollegeBasketballTalk

It happens every year. One player steps up his game and carries his team to a huge upset or a deep run in the NCAA Tournament. Here are five guys to keep an eye one. Five who are playing the best hoops of their lives.

Ray McCallum – Detroit: McCallum, a sophomore, has been lighting up the Horizon all year. He led the team in scoring and finished 2nd in the conference. In the conference opener he had a pedestrian 10 points on 2-7 shooting. And then he got hot. In the next three games Detroit knocked off Youngstown State, the #2 seed (Cleveland State) and the #1 seed (Valparaiso) to clinch an automatic bid. In those 3 games the 6’2 McCallum made 78% of his 2s and 18-20 FTs. He averaged 23 points, 5.3 rebounds and 5 assists.

Opening round opponent: Kansas (2)

Personal Items: Trivia Tidbits on All 68 NCAA Tournament Coaches--CollegeHoopedia.com

DETROIT: Ray McCallum, the only Ball State athlete ever to have his uniform number retired (#10), won the Frances Pomeroy Award in 1983 as the nation's top player shorter than six feet tall. During his seven-year tenure as coach for his alma mater from 1993-94 through 1999-2000, he won an amazing 70% of his games decided by fewer than six points.

Tempo-free NCAA tear down: The Omaha Pod of the Midwest Bracket--Run The Floor

No. 2 Kansas (27-6; Pomeroy ranked 4th) vs. No. 15 Detroit (22-13; 115th)

How they got here: The Titans returned their entire lineup (save for 0.2 percent of their minutes) this season, including McDonald's All-American point guard Ray McCallum Jr. who turned down a number of high-major teams to play for his father. They were without big man Eli Holman for the first half of the season (he was put on personal leave) which lead to a rough 6-9 start. With Holman back, the team rapidly began to improve and their confidence on the court blossomed. They won 13 of their last 15 including the Horizon League tournament championship game over heavily-favored Valparaiso, 70-50, to snag the Horizon's auto-bid.

Kansas was in the hunt for a No. 1 seed before they lost to Baylor in the second-round of the Big 12 conference tournament, 81-72.

The venue: Omaha is 734 miles from Detroit, and 212 miles from Lawrence, Kansas. Out of the gate advantage: Kansas.

Pomeroy: 92% in Kansas' favor

Where Detroit has the advantage:

1. Turnovers Quality of competition aside, the Titans turn the ball over less (once per 19.2 percent of possessions) than the Jayhawks (19.5 percent). More importantly, Detroit creates more turnovers (22.4 percent) than Kansas (20.7 percent).

2. Blocking The Jayhawks may have a powerful shot-blocking force in 7-footer Jeff Whithey, who ranks second-nationally with a block in 14.7 percent of his chances, but the Jayhawks have two to contend with: 6-10 Holman (7.0 percent) and 6-11 LaMarcus Lowe (11.4 pecent). Withey has logged 60.2 percent minutes under Bill Self this season, but there's nary a minute that goes by without either Holman or Lowe on the floor for McCallum Sr.

3. Getting to the free throw line Detroit's free throw rate (44.0 percent) edges Kansas' (41.1 percent), and that's an important point of leverage for an underdog.

4. Possession sharing You don't even have to look at the numbers to know that the ball will usually end up in the hands of Tyshawn Taylor and Thomas Robinson when the Jayhawks have possession. In fact, those two account for 57.0 percent of Kansas' possessions when they're both on the floor and 55.9 percent of their shots. The story is less clear for Detroit. Chase Simon, McCallum Jr. and Holman each get greater than 21 percent of Detroit's possessions when they're on the floor, and each take more than 23 percent of the shots when on the floor. The Kansas D will be spread a little thinner planning their attack.

5. Swagger The Titans have nothing to lose and a ton of heart, and it shows. Junior dunker-extraordinaire Doug Anderson is a highlight-reel of his own. You have to watch these guys play to know what I mean. Detroit last knocked off UCLA in the NCAA tournament in 1999 and St. John's the year before that, but it would be a genuine Butler-style upset if they were able to bring Kansas to task.

Complete Midwest Region Analysis--Basketball Predictions

Detroit is actually a really good 15 seed. Their overall resume isn't wonderful, but remember that their core is Ray McCallum and Eli Holman. Holman missed ten games early in the season, and took a while after that to get in form. They closed the season very strong, winning 10 of their final 11 and rolling through the Horizon League tournament. There will be a lot of pressure on Jeff Withey to handle Holman here. I don't think Bill Self wants to risk Thomas Robinson getting in foul trouble. But that said, as good as Detroit is, you simply can't pick them over Kansas here. Don't even think about it.

The 68 things we can't wait to see in this year's tournament--Eye On College Basketball

7. Father-son combos: The Midwest region has two father-son duos leading their respective universities. Detroit is coached by Ray McCallum and led by Ray McCallum Jr., while Creighton counters with Greg McDermott and Doug McDermott. -- JB
49. Eli Holman vs. Thomas Robinson: Holman called out Robinson on Sunday night, saying, "I can handle Robinson. He has to handle me." If there was any chance Robinson was going to overlook Detroit, that went out the window. -- JB

2012 NCAA tournament Haiku previews--Eye On College Basketball

Kansas vs. Detroit: Titans talking trash / That's not a good idea / To wit: meet this guy

Eli Holman, LaMarcus Lowe give Detroit Mercy some size vs. Kansas--The Detroit Free Press
Detroit Mercy poised to strike as spoiler--The Detroit News
MARCH MADNESS: Titans' opponent Kansas is plenty tested heading into tournament--The Oakland Press
Senior guard ‘so excited’ to be crowned a champion--Varsity Press
'It all starts with believing'--Varsity Press
Cheer on The Titans in The NCAA Tournament at Champps--detroittitans.com

Detroit Women's Basketball 2012 NIT Capsule--College Sports Madness
Titans To Open Up WNIT Against Defending Champion Toledo On Friday--detroittitans.com

Registration Opens for 2012 Regina Miller Basketball Camp--uicflames.com

Green Bay Women's Basketball 2012 NCAA Tournament Capsule--College Sports Madness
UW-Green Bay women to play at Iowa State in NCAA basketball tournament opener--Green Bay Press Gazette
Women's basketball: Butler coach wouldn't bet against UWGB in tournament--Green Bay Press Gazette
Green Bay Will Return to Ames for NCAA Tournament--GreenBayPhoenix.com
Deja Vu at First Glance, But Differences Aplenty--GreenBayPhoenix.com

Panthers Start 2012 Postseason With Tuesday Contest At TCU--Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
TCU by the numbers--PantherU
Video: Meier Previews UWM Postseason Contest At TCU--uwmpanthers.com
Jeter A Part Of Inaugural WIAC Hall Of Fame Class--uwmpanthers.com

The 16 Sweetest NCAA Tournament Upsets of All-Time--Midwest Sports Fans

16. (13) Valparaiso 70, (4) Mississippi 69; 1998 First Round

In terms of seeding and talent differential, this upset isn’t on the same level as some of the others on this list. But few upsets have ended in such a memorable fashion.

Valparaiso, the 21-9 champions of the Mid-Continent Conference, kept the game close for 40 minutes. With ten seconds remaining, the Crusaders had the ball, trailing by two. Star guard Bryce Drew, son of coach Homer Drew, missed a three-pointer that would have given Valpo the lead.

Related: See where this moment falls on our list of the 10 Most Memorable March Madness Moments Ever.

Instead, Mississippi came away with the rebound, and Valpo fouled Ole Miss forward Ansu Sesay. Sesay, normally a very good free-throw shooter, missed both shots. In a scramble for the ball following the second miss, Mississippi’s Keith Carter knocked the ball out of bounds, giving Valparaiso possession with 2.5 seconds on the clock.

The Crusaders threw a cross-court pass to Bill Jenkins, who tipped the ball to Drew, who nailed a three-pointer as time expired to give Valpo a 70-69 win.


The Crusaders beat Florida State in the second round then lost to Rhode Island in the Sweet Sixteen.

VU facing Canes, pains--The Post-Tribune
Broekhoff expected to play for VU in NIT despite illness--The NWI Times
Hurricanes could pose strong challenge for Valparaiso--The NWI Times
Drew Sharp: Michigan State has incredible chemistry, but is that enough?--The Detroit Free Press

Whereas they lost one Branden, two others stepped up. Freshman Brandan Kearney made some important contributions in the rematch with the Buckeyes on Sunday. Senior transfer Brandon Wood is now aggressively running the floor on offense and doggedly checking defensively. He led all scorers Sunday with 21 points.

Michigan State takes a punch, then punches back--The Detroit News

Senior shooting guard Brandon Wood jumped into the lineup and was tremendous, scoring a season-high 21 in the victory over Ohio State.
It's not easy to make it work, and at some point, Dawson's raw ability will be missed. But opponents sagged off him because he's not a pure shooter, and his absence opened space on the floor for Wood, 16-for-29 in the Big Ten tournament. Wood also has the quickness to run the floor with the super-fast Appling.

Game Preview: Valpo at Miami--Section EE
Valpo Ready for NIT First Round at Miami--valpoathletics.com

Dayton is a basketball town — 10 examples--Through the Arch

8 — Wright State won the NCAA Division II national title in 1983. Central State University, the historically black college in nearby Wilberforce, won two NAIA national basketball crowns in the 1965 and 1968 and Wittenberg University in Springfield won NCAA college division national titles in 1961 and 1977.

Women Head to SIU Edwardsville for WBI First Round--wsuraiders.com

A slicker season for YSU hoops, Slocum--Youngstown Vindicator

Green Bay to Play Iowa State in the First Round of the NCAA Tournament--Horizon League Network

Milwaukee, Cleveland State Tip Off Postseason in CBI, NIT Contests--Horizon League Network

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