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Michigan’s loss to Iowa State proof they’re not yet a top ten team

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It didn’t take long for No. 7 Michigan to look like they were overrated heading into a season where they will be replacing their starting back court from a year ago.

The Wolverines went into Ames, IA, and experienced Hilton Magic first hand, losing to Iowa State 77-70. Nik Stauskas had 20 points and six assists, but he was really the only guy that found a rhythm offensively. Glenn Robinson III was 4-for-14 from the floor, Mitch McGary was clearly laboring and is not yet in shape, and Derrick Walton looked promising but, at this point, is very much a freshman.

But in all honesty, what did you expect to happen?

Let me lay it out for you like this: Trey Burke was not only the National Player of the Year a season ago, he was by far the most valuable player in the country. Everything Michigan did offensively last season was built around Burke. It’s the same thing with Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers. Anyone with a fantasy football team can tell you that’s not the same group without their star running the show. Burke was the same way. He made everyone on that team better.

And now?

They are trying to work their way through replacing that talent with a freshman playing his first college game against real competition and a sophomore that picked the Wolverines over Appalachian State. That’s not an easy thing to do, particularly when it is happening in a place that just so happens to have arguably the best home-court advantage in the country.

But wait.

There’s more.

Their preseason all-american center, McGary, has gone a full practice once all season long. Once! There’s no way that he can possibly be in game-shape at this point, let along asking him to be in sync with this group. That issue gets magnified by the fact that this was the first time they had all played together in a competitive game.

I know I’m making excuses for Michigan here, and that’s not what my goal is. Iowa State played a terrific game, Melvin Ejim was awesome and Hilton was as magical as ever. The Cyclones deserve every bit of that win.

But this is not the Michigan team that we will see come March. This is not a finished product. They will get better, and when they do — when Walton has his legs under him, when McGary is back in shape, when everyone is on the same page offensively — they will be as good as they were advertised in the preseason.

POSTERIZED: Pensacola State’s Jamal Thomas dunks through block attempt, makes coach go nuts

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A solid poster dunk went down in the junior college ranks last night as Pensacola State sophomore Jamal Thomas finished a dunk through a block attempt against Northwest Florida State.

The 6-foot-3 Thomas used his power and momentum to go through the opposing shot blocker and the play made his head coach, Pete Pena, go nuts with an over-exaggerated fist pump. The video is short, but be sure to watch for Pena’s reaction near the logo at the top right of the screen.

VIDEO: Boise State robbed of insane, buzzer-beating win on incorrect timing by officials

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It looked like James Webb III of Boise State had hit the season’s craziest buzzer-beater.

With 0.8 seconds left, he caught an in-bounds pass on the run on the right wing, hoisted up a prayer of a three and watched as it banked it as the buzzer sounded.

It’s pretty fantastic:

And it also clearly left his hands before time expired, but there was a reason for that. According to the officials, the clock (for the road team, mind you) did not start when the ball was caught.

They were right.

Where they were wrong was determining that it took more than a second for Webb to catch and release the shot, meaning that they were wrong to waive off the bucket.

This awesome slo-mo clip of the shot from Matt Stephens of the Coloradoan is all the evidence I need, but if you need more, Sportscenter anchor Scott Van Pelt clocked it at 0.7 seconds:

The game would go to overtime, where Colorado State would go on to win, 97-93.

As you can imagine, Boise State players and coaches were livid with the call.

“I hope it’s not a situation where you get an apology later but don’t get the win. I don’t understand it,” head coach Leon Rice said in a radio interview after the game. “I hope they got it right somehow, some way. I don’t know. It didn’t look right to me, but I’m not the official.”

This comes just four days after officials blew a call in a game between New Mexico and San Diego State that allowed the Aztecs to force overtime and eventually beat the Lobos. (That call may have determined the outcome of the Mountain West regular season title, to boot.)

New Mexico was essentially told, “my bad”, but the league as a result.

And Boise State will probably get the same treatment despite the fact that, if the league determines that the referees botched this call as well, the tame technically was over then.

Will they have the guts to award the Broncos a road win that they earned and deserve?

I doubt it.

UPDATE: Here’s a statement from the officiating crew: