Jim Crews

New Mexico follows Cincinnati win with loss at St. Louis

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Well, this isn’t the way you follow an impressive win.

Coming off a big win on the road at Cincinnati, New Mexico trailed 33-13 at halftime and left St. Louis with a 60-46 loss.

The Lobos shot 31.8-percent from the field and some of the key weapons for New Mexico had off nights. Tony Snell finished with five points on 1-for-4 shooting while New Mexico committed 21 turnovers. The 46 points are by far the lowest of the season for New Mexico, who has lost two of their past three games after starting the season 12-0.

St. Louis got 15 points from Cory Remekun and 12 from Mike McCall, Jr. It wasn’t a great offensive night for the Billikens, in fact, it was pedestrian. They shot 40.4-percent from the field and 23.8-percent from three.

The Billikens have turned it on lately, defensively, and this game makes them look even more legit. The Lobos are the fourth straight opponent that St. Louis has held under 50 points.

Mainly, it was just that bad a start for the Lobos, whose bench finished with nine total points.

Seems like a classic case of post-big-game letdown. They spent it all on one game — in fairness, one that will look a lot better than this loss to St. Louis will look, bad — and now they’ve got little left in the tank.

The loss hurts, but it’s nothing that, in the long term, New Mexico can’t get past. And it doesn’t get any easier, they have UNLV at home in their Mountain West Conference opener on Jan. 9.

Big ups to the Billikens, who get a great win against a great opponent to spruce up the non-conference resume.

David Harten is a sportswriter and college basketball blogger. You can follow him on Twitter at @David_Harten.

Akron reveals special bobble heads for LeBron, high school teammates

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When it comes to discussing some of the game of basketball’s best players, specifically those who went directly from high school to the NBA, a question that’s often asked is where said player would have attended college if forced (by rule) to do so. Kevin Garnett, Kobe Bryant and LeBron James are among those who have been discussed in this manner, and in the case of LeBron he’s got connections to two programs within his home state of Ohio.

LeBron’s connected with the Ohio State program, which is outfitted by the Nike’s LeBron signature line, but there’s another program with an even closer connection. That would be Akron, which is led by head coach Keith Dambrot, and all he did was serve as LeBron’s high school coach at St. Vincent/St. Mary’s HS in Akron during the player’s freshman and sophomore years at the school. Also on those teams were two future Akron Zips in guard Dru Joyce and forward Romeo Travis.

Thursday the school announced that it would be honoring James, Joyce and Travis with bobble head dolls to be given out before Akron’s home games against Buffalo (February 16; Joyce’s bobble head), Bowling Green (February 26; Travis) and Ohio (March 1; James).

All three bobble head dolls are wearing Akron uniforms, which in the case of LeBron allows fans to think back and imagine what could have been. Season ticket holders guaranteed one bobble head per account (on each of the three giveaway days), with the first 750 fans in attendance to receive one as well.

NEW PODCAST: Indiana, Cal, troublesome trends and a weekend preview

California's Jabari Bird celebrates a score against Oregon in the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Thursday, Feb. 11, 2016, in Berkeley, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)
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The gang is back together again for another episode of the NBCSports.com College Basketball Talk Podcast, with Rob Dauster hosting and Raphielle Johnson and Scott Phillips joining him. Today’s episode touched on big wins picked up Thursday night by California and Indiana, discussing the performances of those teams and also touching on their prospects down the line.

Also discussed were the recent performances of Iowa State, Providence and Texas A&M (which are you more worried about?), and some of the top games on this weekend’s schedule headlined by Kansas visiting Oklahoma. And if you’re a fan of seafood, you may take umbrage with some of Rob’s comments at the beginning of the podcast.

As always, you can subscribe to the podcast on either iTunes or Stitcher, and there’s also a link to listen to this podcast below. Thanks for listening.