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The Secondary Break: Thursday’s Links

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It’s show-and-tell time for the Utes (Salt Lake Tribune)
Utah’s off to an 11-1 start, but with a schedule that is ranked as one of the worst in college basketball the jury’s still out in the eyes of some. With that being the case, Thursday’s Pac-12 opener against No. 10 Oregon represents a big opportunity for Larry Krystkowiak’s team.

College Basketball Caucus: Bold Predictions for 2014 (USA Today)
With the calendar flipping over to 2014, a group of college basketball writers compiled their bold predictions for the new year. The boldest predictions involve SMU and Wichita State.

Big East Conference debut shows there’s nothing worth changing (Sports Illustrated)
New Year’s Eve represented an important day for the new Big East, with all ten teams in action to kick off conference play. And under the leadership of commissioner Val Ackerman, the hope is that the conference gets back to the “basketball-first” roots that led to Dave Gavitt founding the original league in 1979.

New Year’s resolutions for Dan Hurley and URI basketball (Go Local Prov)
Prior to the start of the season one team some folks were high on in the Atlantic 10 was Rhode Island, with head coach Dan Hurley bringing in some talented recruits to go along with some solid returnees in his second year at the helm. But if anything, non-conference play served as a reminder that the rebuilding job will take some time.

Shaquielle McKissic overcomes troubled path on way to Arizona State (Seattle Times)
Arizona State senior forward Shaquielle McKissic only has one season of eligibility in Tempe, and after a slow start he’s been more productive of late for the Sun Devils. And McKissic’s path to the school wasn’t an easy one either, with behavioral issues and two years away from basketball nearly ending his career.

Southern Conference basketball sliding downward (Chattanooga Times Free Press)
If one were to put together a list of conferences that have been hit hard by realignment, there’s no doubt that the Southern Conference would be on there. College of Charleston’s already gone, and a few other programs (including Davidson) will leave at the end of the current academic year. So where does that leave the schools who will stick around? Not in a good place, according to this story.

Slumping UConn looking for answers (Hartford Courant)
In one of the later games on New Year’s Eve, No. 17 UConn put forth a disappointing performance in a 75-71 loss at Houston. The Huskies fought back after trailing by as many as 21 points, but the way in which they played to wind up in that hole is concerning. UConn’s now looking for answers ahead of their game at SMU on Saturday.

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:

Tulsa rallies to hand No. 16 SMU 1st home loss 82-77

Tulsa guard James Woodard (10) shoots a free throw during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game against SMU Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016, in Dallas.  Tulsa won 82-77. (AP Photo/LM Otero)
(AP Photo/LM Otero)
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DALLAS (AP) Shaquille Harrison had 21 points, Pat Birt hit a crucial 3-pointer and scored 12 of his 17 points after halftime and Tulsa rallied from eight points down in the second half to beat No. 16 SMU 82-77 on Wednesday night.

Nic Moore scored 27 to lead the Mustangs (20-3, 9-3 American Athletic). They lost for the first time in 13 home games and dropped to 2-3 since their 18-0 start to a season that won’t include postseason play because of NCAA sanctions.

Moore twice hit 3-pointers to pull SMU within a point in the final minute, but Birt answered the first with a 3 and James Woodard followed the second with two of his six free throws in the final 1:04.

The Golden Hurricane (16-8, 8-4) ended a four-game losing streak against SMU with their eighth win in 10 games since an 0-2 conference start.