Andrew Wiggins

Late Night Snacks: Kansas takes down unbeaten Toledo

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GAME OF THE DAY: No. 16 Kansas 93, Toledo 83

The Jayhawks continued their difficult non-conference schedule by hosting unbeaten Toledo on Monday night and Kansas prevailed with a 93-83 victory in Lawrence. Naadir Tharpe continued his improved play of-late with 20 points and eight assists to lead the way for No. 16 Kansas as they outlasted a solid offensive effort from Toledo. Although Toledo hasn’t faced anyone the caliber of Kansas this season, they showed that they can hang with anyone in the country offensively, and they’ll be a tough team to beat in the MAC.

CBT’s Rob Dauster has more on this one and how if affects both Kansas and Toledo going forward.

IMPORTANT OUTCOMES

1) No. 6 Oklahoma State 92, Robert Morris 66

The Cowboys picked up a home win over Robert Morris, but the news here is Oklahoma State losing center Michael Cobbins to an apparent Achilles’ tendon injury. Cobbins’ status going forward seems uncertain and we should know more in the coming days, but it would be a major loss for the Cowboys.

2) Louisiana Tech 102, Oklahoma 98, overtime

Busy night of hoops in the Sooner State, huh? Preseason mid-major darling Louisiana Tech withstood a ridiculous three-pointer from Cameron Clark at the end of regulation to send the game to overtime, as the Bulldogs held on for the four-point win over Oklahoma. This gives Louisiana Tech a nice win going into Conference USA play after the Bulldogs fell to St. Mary’s and Oklahoma State earlier in the year.

3) St. Louis 57, Vanderbilt 49

Is America sleeping on the Billikens? St. Louis has won six straight — with their only losses on the year to unbeatens: Wisconsin and Wichita State — and their defense is one of the best in the country as the Billikens completely shut down Vanderbilt’s offense in their own gym. St. Louis held the Commodores to 33 percent shooting and 17 percent shooting from the three-point line in the win and they’ll head into the Atlantic 10 with a ton of momentum.

STARRED

1) Tennessee had a great night from its supporting cast as the Volunteers rolled past Virginia 87-52. Jordan McRae (21 points) and Jarnell Stokes (20 points) led the charge as usual for Tennessee, but it was the offensive play of Josh Richardson (20 points, 8-for-9 shooting) and Antonio Barton (14 points, 5-for-6 shooting) that took Tennessee to a new level.

2) T.J. Warren led North Carolina State with 24 points and nine rebounds as the Wolfpack escaped with a 68-64 win over UNC-Greensboro on the road. Warren knocked in 1-of-2 free throws to give North Carolina State a three-point lead with 23.4 seconds remaining before the Wolfpack got a stop to seal the game.

3) Despite missing starters Gary Bell Jr. and Sam Dower Jr., No. 24 Gonzaga cruised past San Francisco 69-41 behind a balanced scoring effort as Drew Barnham knocked in five three-pointers and finished with a team-high 15 points.

STRUGGLED

1) Southern 116, Champion Baptist College 12. Nuff said.

2) BYU fell behind 40-28 at halftime and never recovered as the Cougars fell on the road to Pepperdine 80-74 in a WCC contest. The difference in this one: three-point shooting. BYU was 1-for-11 from beyond the arc while Pepperdine was 13-for-24. BYU has now dropped four straight games.

3) VMI trailed by a point at halftime against Clemson before being blown out of the water in the second half of an 80-50 road loss. VMI averages 89 points a game, but was held to a season-low of 50 points, including only 18 in the second half.

OTHER TOP 25 SCORES

  • No. 9 Baylor 81, Oral Roberts 55

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.