St. Louis had a pretty solid week in Brooklyn this weekend. The Billikens locked up the automatic bid out of the Atlantic 10 by beating VCU in the finals, capping a great run for interim coach Jim Crews who should no doubt get the interim tag dropped from his title as a result.
Then, in the only snag of the week, the team bus caught some traffic on the way to the airport and it could’ve meant the team wouldn’t get the honor of watching themselves pop up on the screen and announce their seed.
So what does any good team do? They improvise. By that, I mean they stopped at a Best Buy and camped out in the entertainment center to watch the action.
I mean, it’s one thing to watch it. It’s another to watch it in a place where the public can watch you watch it.
Major kudos to Crews and the Billikens for making an in-game adjustment. It’s something they’ve been great at all season, so why should we expect any different now?
Follow David Harten on Twitter at @David_Harten
Nic Moore scored 18 of his 25 points in the second half and added 11 assists as No. 16 SMU knocked off Gonzaga in Moody Coliseum on Saturday night, 69-60.
The Zags got 20 points and 16 boards from Domantas Sabonis, but Kyle Wiltjer scored just four points and shot 2-for-17 from the floor.
It wasn’t pretty.
And it may have been the end of Gonzaga’s NCAA tournament hopes.
Entering Saturday, the Zags had an RPI in the mid-60s, enough to keep them in the bubble conversation but not enough to make them anything more than a team that will be projected to end up on the cut-line.
The issue is a complete lack of quality wins on their résumé. Gonzaga beat UConn in the Bahamas. That’s a borderline top 50 win. They beat Washington, another borderline top 50 win. Beyond that? They swept Pepperdine, beat Tennessee and own a win over Montana. None of those are top 100 wins, and that’s why the SMU game was such a big deal. The Mustangs are a top 25 team. This was a road game. This win was the kind of thing that the Zags could pin at the top of their profile.
But Wiltjer didn’t show up, the Zags had no answer for Moore and they’ll head back to Spokane needing, in all likelihood, to win the WCC’s automatic bid if they want to dance.
Cal picked up a big win over Oregon State in Haas Pavilion on Saturday night, and the exclamation point was this emphatic dunk from Jaylen Brown: