Grambling Athletics

Monday’s Pregame Shootaround: Can Grambling finally break their 32 game losing streak?

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GAME OF THE NIGHT: Central Baptist at Grambling, 8:30 p.m.

This isn’t really the game of the night.

In fact, it’s probably quite the opposite.

Grambling has lost 32 straight games. They are 0-4 this season. They were 0-28 last season. They have dropped 41 of their last 42 games and are winless since beating Alabama A&M on March 3rd, 2012. The one year, nine months and two days. A little more than 93 weeks, or 653 days to be exact.

But tonight, the Grambling State Tigers will finally — mercifully — have a chance to end that streak as they host Central Baptist, an NAIA program that has started off the season 1-7.

“We’re at home for the first time non-conference in front of our fans and we want to come out and play great basketball and get the win,” head coach Joseph Price said. I’m sure he does. Lose to Central Baptist, and Grambling will have three chances — at TCU, at Evansville and at Arkansas-Little Rock — to try and avoid going an entire calendar year without winning a basketball game.

MID-MAJOR MATCHUP OF THE NIGHT: Delaware at North Dakota State, 8:00 p.m.

NDSU is one week removed from a win at Notre Dame. Marshall Bjorklund is a beast in the post, good enough that people are forgetting to mention the fact that this team has Taylor Braun on their roster. The Bison are good, but Delaware has got a team as well. Throw in the fact that Devon Saddler will be returning to the lineup for the Blue Hens tonight, and we should see a pretty good basketball game in the frozen tundra of Fargo, ND.

FIVE THING TO WATCH FOR

1) No. 8 Duke returns to the court after 13 days off for finals by taking on Gardner-Webb at Cameron Indoor.

2) In another interesting game between strong mid-major programs, Oral Roberts heads to Ohio to take on Akron.

3) Georgia Tech, who has been a bit of a disappointment this season, will host Kennesaw State.

4) Chris Collins will lead Northwestern into battle with Mississippi Valley State.

5) Illinois State is coming off of a win over Dayton. Can the Redbirds string together two wins and take out Oakland and Travis Bader tonight?

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: