After graduation he was working and playing recreational basketball until a trip to The Dustbowl Basketball Tournament in Danville. Ill., an annual event that attracts college-level and post-college players in a July 4 competition.“Some friends called me and asked me to come play with them,” he said. “While I was there a coach from Danville saw me play.”Upon learning he had not enrolled in college Danville offered him a half-scholarship, where he turned in a strong performance in just his first season of basketball.“Arkansas State is getting a good one,” said Taylor. “I had two high majors (Kansas State and Iowa State) call about him last week. He has lots of offers but that is all a moot point now.”
Maybe Isaac Haas college career isn’t over after all.
The Purdue 7-foot-2 center broke his elbow in the Boilermakers’ opening-round win over Cal State Fullerton, but isn’t ruling out continuing to play despite the injury.
Haas practice Saturday with Purdue with the aid of a brace and is hopeful that he could still be cleared.
Purdue coach Matt Painter downplayed the possibility that Haas would play, saying that “his future is too important.”
Certainly, Haas’ availability would be enormous for the Boilermakers not only because he’s averaging 14.7 points and 5.7 rebounds, but because he totally changes the game with his presence inside on both ends of the floor. Purdue has a capable reserve in Matt Haarms, but without Haas, Purdue’s Final Four chances seem dire.
Even if Haas is able to play, it remains to be seen how effective he can be with a busted elbow. It also sounds as though the brace he’s been outfitted with may need special clearance from the NCAA due to its composition.
For an NCAA tournament full of amazing storylines, Haas’ (potential) ability to play through a broke elbow might be among the most intriguing.
On paper, this matchup set up perfectly for No. 9-seed Alabama.
The Crimson Tide are the longest and most athletic team that No. 1 seed Villanova has faced off with in months. They entered the day as one of college basketball’s best at defending the three-point line. They have the kind of dynamic play maker at the point guard spot that can give Villanova fits in Collin Sexton.
All of the dots connected.
What I failed to mention there, however, is that Villanova has an uncanny ability to absolutely bury anyone in their path in an avalanche of threes, and that is precisely what happened to the Crimson Tide on Saturday afternoon.
Mikal Bridges, who scored just a single point in the first half, scored 16 of his 23 points in the first four minutes of the second half as Villanova took a game that was close for 20 minutes and turned it into a massacre. The Wildcats outscored Alabama 49-31 in the second half — a number that was limited as the Wildcats took their foot off the gas down the stretch — en route to an 81-58 win.
Villanova will advance to the Sweet 16 to face the winner of tomorrow’s game between No. 5 West Virginia and No. 13 Marshall.
Bridges led the way for Villanova on Saturday, but they may not have been in the position that they were in if it was not for Donte DiVincenzo. The redshirt sophomore caught fire in the first half, scored all 18 points his points and hitting five threes to put Villanova ahead by five at the break. Divincenzo also added five assists, his play-making a difference-maker with Jalen Brunson on the bench with a pair of early fouls.
And that should terrify everyone in the East Region.
Hell, that should be a statement to everyone in this tournament.
Villanova just de-pantsed one of the teams that best matched up with them, a team that has a lottery pick running the point and an NBA player and coach on the sideline. And they did it without much coming from their all-american point guard, the guy that was named the NBC Sports National Player of the Year.
Brunson finished with just 12 points and four assists, and honestly, did you even notice? This was the Bridges show in the second half when Villanova made their run. It was DiVincenzo’s show in the first half when Villanova needed someone to keep them close. We’ve seen Phil Booth take over games. (Anyone remember the 2016 national title game? He had 20.) Omari Spellman can pop off for 25 from time to time.
The Wildcats are just so dangerous.
And when they play like they did today, they are damn near unbeatable.
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) — Police say someone stole thousands of dollars in electronics from the University of North Carolina men’s basketball team locker room and office while they were away for the ACC tournament.
UNC-Chapel Hill campus police said on Twitter that the break-in happened at the Dean Smith Center on March 9, and they released images of a man they believe may have been involved.
A police report says the thief managed to get into the team locker room and basketball office without forced entry, according to The Herald-Sun.
The report says the thief stole a PlayStation 4, Xbox One and clothing worth $2,900 that belonged to the athletic department. Police say the thief also stole a laptop worth $1,200 and a financial document worth about $3,000 belonging to one of the players.
The No. 1 overall seed on the men’s side of the NCAA tournament made history on Friday night.
They because the first No. 1 seed to lose to a No. 16 seed in the first round of the tournament, as Virginia lost to UMBC, if you were still unaware.
Over on the women’s side, the bracket is nowhere near as broken, because UConn’s women made history, too. They set NCAA tournament records for … well, almost everything it seems like.
The Huskies were up 55-19 at the end of the first quarter of their first round game against St. Francis (PA). Those 55 points are an NCAA tournament record. They held a 94-31 lead at the half, another NCAA tournament record, and held on to win 140-52.
The 140 points that Geno Auriemma’s team scored was an NCAA tournament record. The 88 points that they won by was one point short of an NCAA tournament record 89 points that was set by Baylor in a win over Texas Southern last season.
Oh, and the Huskies set the record for more assists in an NCAA tournament game — 38 — for good measure.
All in all, I think it’s safe to say that the fans in Storrs had a better weekend than the fans in Charlottesville. Hopefully, that will allow them to forget the fact that the men’s basketball program has become a laughing stock.
Never before in the history of the NCAA tournament as a No. 16 seed upset a No. 1 seed.
That was until Friday night, when UMBC sent the No. 1 overall seed Virginia packing.
And if you thought no one had picked that upset, you were wrong.
Let’s start with the Maryland Governor, who was clearly a homer in picking UMBC to not only beat Virginia, but to win a national title:
Never say never, but … that’s never going to happen bud.
But how about this: My son, who is two years old and based his picks on his hard and fast rule of “all the doggies”, called this upset!
He also called Penn over Kansas, Fullerton over Purdue and Butler winning a national title, but whatever.
That bracket is actually pretty good!