Ray McCallum,Ray McCallum Jr.

Late Night Snacks: Ivy League, Horizon take center stage

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Game of the Day

Harvard 67, Yale 64

The Crimson held a double-digit lead going into the second half. The Bulldogs were able to climb back into the game and with under 30 seconds made it a one-possession game. The first half deficit was too much for Yale, as Harvard connected on the final four free throws to secure the win. The win keeps Harvard perfect in conference play, just a half game above Princeton, who also won on Friday.

Also of note: Siena 66, Manhattan 63.

Important Outcomes

Princeton 76, Cornell 59

The Tigers rolled past Cornell on Friday night, which was important for Princeton. They keep a four-game winning streak alive and remain one of 2-0 in conference — making Princeton and Harvard the only undefeated teams in the Ivy League. It was a must-win for the Tigers, who have a tough next week. On Friday, Princeton plays a good Brown team, followed by Yale the next day.

Detroit 88, Youngstown State 77

Four starters for Detroit finished with double figures, led by Ray McCallum’s 23 points. Like Princeton, the win for Detroit keeps the Titans in the hunt for the top spot in their conference. Detroit sits half a game out of first, behind Valparaiso. Detroit has three upcoming games against teams with a combined 8-18 record in the Horizon League. After that Detroit gets another shot at Valpo.

Valparaiso 71, Milwaukee 40

The Crusaders could have lost sole possession of first place in the Horizon League, but held the Panthers to a dismal 27 percent shooting from the field, en route to a blowout win. Valparaiso has won six of seven. Three of the next four won’t be easy — against Illinois-Chicago, on the road at Wright State and back home against Detroit. The Crusaders have beaten all three of those team, but by a combined 12 points.

Also of note: Mercer 66, Kennesaw State 42

Starred

Ray McCallum, Detroit

The Horizon League’s leading scorer eclipsed the 20-point mark for the 13th time this season, scoring a 23 points with six assists, three rebounds and five steals. He was great from the field connecting on 9-of-15 and 3-of-4 from behind the arc.

Wesley Saunders, Harvard

Saunders had 15 points, 11 rebounds for his first double-double in a Harvard uniform. He added four rebounds to go along with the double-double, logging 39 minutes in a win over Harvard.

Maurice Barrow, Fairfield

Barrow had a career-high 25 points to go along with 10 rebounds, as Fairfield won its third straight in a 10-point win over Rider.

Also of note: Iam Hummer, Princeton: 22 points, 9 rebounds, 4 assists; Denton Koon, Princeton: 22 points, 3 steals; Damian Eargle, Youngstown State: 13 points, 12 rebounds, 7 blocks

Struggled

O.D. Anosike, Siena

Thirteen times this season Anosike has finished with a double-double. He was limited to only five points and six rebounds. Although he did battle foul trouble — two in the first half and picking up a third two minutes into the second half — Manhattan did not let the 6-foot-8 senior dominate down low.

Columbia shooting

Columbia outrebounded Penn by 10, including a 12-1 advantage on the offensive glass, however poor shooting cost the Lions. Over the game Columbia shot 34 percent and only 18 from three. Columbia couldn’t stop Miles Cartwright, who scored several key baskets late to give the Quakers the win.

Kennesaw State

The Owls shot 28 percent for the game and had 10 more turnovers than assists. Kennesaw State has now dropped 19 of the last 20 games, including seven straight. The Owls sit at the bottom of the Atlantic Sun standings with a 1-9 record.

Terrence is also the lead writer at NEHoopNews.com and can be followed on Twitter: @terrence_payne

Seton Hall’s Derrick Gordon won’t pursue pro basketball to become a firefighter

NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 12:  Derrick Gordon #32 of the Seton Hall Pirates celebrates after hitting a basket against the Villanova Wildcats during the Big East Basketball Tournament Championship at Madison Square Garden on March 12, 2016 in New York City. Seton Hall Pirates defeated Villanova Wildcats 69-67.  (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
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After a successful career that included stops at Western Kentucky, UMass and Seton Hall, Derrick Gordon, Division I college basketball’s first openly gay player, will not pursue professional opportunities and will instead become a firefighter.

The 6-foot-3 Gordon averaged 8.0 points and 3.3 rebounds per game as a senior for the Pirates, helping the team reach the NCAA tournament during his graduate transfer year. By making the NCAA tournament with Seton Hall this past season, Gordon became the first college basketball player to reach the event with three different teams.

A tenacious perimeter defender who could have earned a pro contract if he stuck with basketball, Gordon will instead pursue a career as a firefighter in San Francisco.

“I’ve had an amazing basketball career and want to thank everybody who has always been there supporting me every step on the way,” Gordon said via his Instagram. “But I’m making a change in my career…I will now be working towards becoming a San Francisco Firefighter!! I’m excited about this and looking forward to having a long career!!”

While Gordon likely would have never made the NBA on talent alone, his defensive prowess would have likely given him a shot overseas or in the D League. It’s hard to say why Gordon is making this decision, but given what we saw with all of the attention surrounding Michael Sam when he tried to play in the NFL, Gordon was probably going to face a lot of scrutiny wherever he decided to play.

Hopefully Gordon finds his calling as a firefighter and brings the same energy and leadership that he brought on the floor to helping other people outside of basketball.

Washington guard Markelle Fultz pulls off sick spin and dunk at FIBA U18 Americas

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Kelly Kline/Under Armour
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Washington incoming freshman guard Markelle Fultz is going to be one of the premier players in the country next season as his unique game is going to be fascinating to watch.

The 6-foot-5 Fultz is currently playing with the USA U18 team in Chile for the FIBA U18 Americas as he’s second on the team in scoring and first in assists as the Americans play Canada for the title on Saturday.

Against the host country, Fultz had an electric spin move in the paint and finished with an easy dunk. If you’re not willing to stay up late to watch this dude play this year, then set your DVRs, because Fultz is going to have some fun moments during the season.

(H/t: Jonathan Wasserman, Bleacher Report)

POSTERIZED: Class of 2016 forward Chris Seeley has a massive dunk on defender

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The Las Vegas AAU events are all going on this week and it’s the final event for rising seniors.

At the Las Vegas Fab 48, forward Chris Seeley of the Splash City 17U team put down one of the best poster dunks of the summer as he skied over a defender for an emphatic finish.

The Class of 2016 forward attends Central High School in Fresno, California as he’s receiving plenty of buzz for his recent play.

 

 

 

Five-star forward Jarred Vanderbilt cuts list to nine

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LAS VEGAS, NV — Five-star Class of 2017 forward Jarred Vanderbilt has been one of the most sought-after recruits in the country since he was a freshman in high school.

The 6-foot-8 native of Houston is beginning to wind things down in the recruiting process as he cut his list to nine schools on Friday. Vanderbilt’s list includes some of the most storied programs in college basketball and plenty of schools from his home state of Texas.

“I just followed my heart. Went with the schools I liked the most and who I have the best relationships with. Thear were the schools I could see myself playing for,” Vanderbilt told NBCSports.com.

Regarded as the No. 13 overall prospect in the Rivals.com national rankings, Vanderbilt is currently recovering from a broken fifth metatarsal in his left foot.

Vanderbilt will see a doctor in three-to-four weeks as he’s currently in a boot to help his foot heal.

Report: Michigan State and Penn State will play at the Palestra

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - MARCH 10: Head coach Patrick Chambers of the Penn State Nittany Lions looks on against the Ohio State Buckeyes in the second round of the Big Ten Basketball Tournament at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on March 10, 2016 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
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Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo has previously expressed a desire to coach a game at the legendary Palestra in Philadelphia and it appears he’ll get his chance in a Big Ten game this season.

According to a report from Brendan F. Quinn of MLive, Penn State will use the Palestra as its home gym for the Jan. 7, 2017 Big Ten game against Michigan State. It is the only time the two teams are scheduled to play during Big Ten season and Penn’s home gym will offer a unique setting for the game.

Since the capacity of the Palestra is 8,722, it should make for a fun atmosphere for both programs since this will be a game both fan bases will likely want to attend.

With Nittany Lions head coach Pat Chambers making Philadelphia a major recruiting priority for his program, a game like this in Philadelphia makes sense while Michigan State has always been open to playing games in unique settings such as aircraft carriers.

The Palestra has been a college basketball mainstay since it was built in 1927 as it hosts all Penn home games and, in the past, hosted a lot of Big 5 Philadelphia college games between La Salle, Penn, Saint Joseph’s, Temple and Villanova.

Overall, a fun idea that should make for an interesting experience for both programs. It’s not often that a team will change its home venue for a conference game, but it could be the start of something we see other schools look to do.