A minor fire broke out in a McKale Center equipment room on Saturday night

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Things could have gone from bad (UCLA’s 66-10 win) to worse for Arizona fans on Saturday night.

Apparently a fire broke out in an equipment room at McKale Center, Arizona’s home arena, as reported by multiple news outlets.

According to Tucson Fire Department spokesman Capt. Barrett Baker, smoke detectors were set off by the small blaze at around 9:30 PM Saturday and upon arrival firefighters saw smoke coming from the roof of the arena.

There were no reported injuries as a result of the fire, and both the cause of the fire and the extent of the damage are still under investigation.

Based on the details provided by the TFD and the fact that a women’s volleyball game took place on Sunday afternoon, it’s safe to assume that nothing serious came of the fire.

Here are some details on what firefighters saw on Saturday night:

An attack team, consisting of 10 firefighters, entered McKale to determine the location of the fire, along with help from UAPD. The alarm panel specified a certain room and the firefighters confirmed they had heavy smoke and water coming out of the room from under the door. Firefighters made entry into the room and had flames showing along with heavy smoke. They quickly extinguished the fire but visibility was minimal due to the amount of residual smoke.

A sprinkler head had activated in the room, assisting in the extinguishment of the fire. Actions were immediately taken to evacuate as much smoke as possible to improve visibility and get secondary confirmation the entire fire was controlled. Firefighters from two ladder trucks had also made their way to the roof of McKale to ensure the fire had not spread to the roof.

Two alarms were dispatched to the scene, consisting of twenty-one units and forty-eight firefighters. There were no injuries to firefighters. The cause of the fire is currently under investigation and no estimation of damages had been made.

McKale Center, named for former coach and athletic director J.F. “Pop” McKale, opened on February 1, 1973 with an 87-69 Arizona victory over Wyoming.

The court is named Lute and Bobbi Olson Court in honor of the school’s winningest coach and his late wife.

The Wildcats, preseason pick to win the Pac-12, play their second exhibition on Tuesday night against Chico State and open the regular season on Sunday against Charleston Southern.

Photo credit: University of Arizona

Raphielle is also the assistant editor at and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.

No. 1 Kentucky survives without Tyler Ulis in lineup

Tyler Ulis
AP Photo/Chuck Burton
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Less than a week after giving No. 2 Maryland all they could handle, Illinois State went into Lexington and gave No. 1 Kentucky fits.

The Redbirds never really threatened UK in the second half, but they went into the break tied and were within single digits down the stretch, eventually losing 75-63.

Kentucky was flustered. They turned the ball over 15 times compared to just eight assists, they shot 2-for-12 from three and just 29-for-46 (63 percent) from the charity stripe. They simply did not handle Illinois State’s pressure all that well.

And there was a reason for that.

Tyler Ulis didn’t play.

Sometimes it’s difficult to appreciate just what a player brings to a team until that player is not in the lineup, and that was precisely the case with Ulis on Monday night. It was crystal clear what he provides Kentucky. Beyond leadership and the ability to break a press without throwing the ball to the other team, he’s a calming presence. He doesn’t get rattled when a defender is harassing him and he doesn’t get overwhelmed by a situation like a mid-major threatening the No. 1 team in the country in their own gym.

He’s everything you look for in a pure point guard, and for as good as Jamal Murray and Isaiah Briscoe have looked at times this season, it should be crystal clear who the most important player on this Kentucky team is.

LSU loses to Charleston, eliminates at-large bid margin for error

Ben Simmons
AP Photo/Kathy Willens
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Ben Simmons scored 15 points and grabbed 18 rebounds, the second time in his six-game career that the LSU freshman has collected that many caroms, but that wasn’t enough for the Tigers to avoid dropping a game on the road to the College of Charleston, 70-58. It was the third straight loss for Simmons’ crew, as they fell to Marquette and N.C. State at the Legends Classic last week.

But here’s the thing: LSU didn’t just lose.

The game really wasn’t close.

LSU was down by as many as 23 points. It was 39-17 at the half, and that was after Charleston had a shot at the buzzer called off upon review. They made a bit of a run in the second half but never got closer than seven. When LSU would cut into the lead, the Cougars would respond with a run of their own, killing LSU’s spirit while keeping them at arm’s length.

[RELATED: Ben Simmons’ one college year a waste?]

Now, there are quite a few things here to discuss. For starters, LSU’s effort was, at best, apathetic, and, at worst, regular old pathetic. The team has a serious lack of leadership that was plainly evident on Monday night; would Fred VanVleet let his team fold against a program picked to finish at the bottom of the SoCon? Would Tyler Ulis? For that matter, would Tom Izzo or Mike Krzyzewski or John Calipari?

Perhaps more importantly, does any of that change when Keith Hornsby and Craig Victor get back?

Simmons did show off his potential — 18 boards, four assists, he even made his first three of the year — but he also showed precisely why there are scouts that are trying to curtail the LeBron James comparisons. Simmons was 4-for-15 from the floor with seven turnovers against a mediocre mid-major team. There are so many things that Simmons does well, but scoring efficiently — particularly in half court setting — and shooting the ball consistently are not on that list.

But here’s the biggest issue: LSU may have put themselves in a situation where they aren’t a tournament team. As of today, they’re 3-3 on the season with losses to a pair of teams that, at best, seem destined to be in the bubble conversation on Selection Sunday in addition to this loss to Charleston. The rest of their non-conference schedule is ugly. The only game worth noting is at home against No. 6 Oklahoma at the end of January.

The NCAA factors in non-conference schedule strength when determining at-large teams. You need to at least try, and LSU didn’t try; they have one of the worst non-conference schedules in the country.

The great thing about being in the SEC — as opposed to, say, the Missouri Valley — is that the Tigers will have plenty of chances to earn marquee wins. Six, by my court: Kentucky twice, Texas A&M twice, Vanderbilt on the road and Oklahoma at home. They probably need to win at least two or three of those games to have a real chance, and that’s assuming they can avoid anymore horrid losses in the process.

The season isn’t over six games in, not by any stretch of the imagination.

But LSU has done a hell of a job eliminating their margin for error.