teague

Seton Hall center Eugene Teague poised to return Saturday

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As was the case last season, the Seton Hall Pirates have been unable to avoid the injury bug for much of the 2013-14 season. Patrik Auda, Fuquan Edwin and Aaron Geramipoor all missed time due to injury, and the same went for senior center Eugene Teague after he suffered a terrifying fall in the Pirates’ win over Lafayette on December 27.

Averaging 10.8 points and 9.4 rebounds per game, Teague is a key figure in Kevin Willard’s attack with the Pirates lacking depth in the post. With Teague sidelined with a concussion the Pirates lost three of four games to open Big East play, with the lone victory being a double-overtime thriller at Providence in the conference opener for both.

The wait for Teague’s return may be coming to an end however, as according to Mike Vorkunov the Newark Star-Ledger the senior is expected to make his return to the lineup on Saturday when the Pirates visit Georgetown. However, even with the hurdle being cleared it will take Teague some time to get back in the condition that allowed him to play nearly 26 minutes per game before the injury.

There is still the physical nature of his comeback, though. He only began practicing this week and Willard said that Teague is as much as a week-and-a-half away from returning to his previous aerobic form.

Willard will monitor Teague’s minutes against Georgetown, unlikely to play him for more than three minutes at a time. Still, the coach expects there to be some moments where Teague will be affected by his endurance.

With Georgetown being shorthanded itself (eight scholarship players were available for their loss at Xavier on Wednesday), this could be an opportunity for the Pirates to turn things in the right direction after losing games to Creighton, Villanova and Marquette. In those defeats the Pirates averaged just 66.3 points per game, just over ten points off of their average for the season (78.6 ppg).

Now that Teague’s been cleared to return to the court Seton Hall has their best low-post scorer back in the fold, which should help players such as Auda, Edwin and guard Sterling Gibbs offensively as he gets back to game shape.

Gonzaga’s NCAA tournament chances take a major blow in loss to No. 16 SMU

SMU guard Nic Moore (11) shoots over Gonzaga forward Kyle Wiltjer (33) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Saturday, Feb. 13, 2016, in Dallas. (AP Photo/Jim Cowsert)
(AP Photo/Jim Cowsert)
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Nic Moore scored 18 of his 25 points in the second half and added 11 assists as No. 16 SMU knocked off Gonzaga in Moody Coliseum on Saturday night, 69-60.

The Zags got 20 points and 16 boards from Domantas Sabonis, but Kyle Wiltjer scored just four points and shot 2-for-17 from the floor.

It wasn’t pretty.

And it may have been the end of Gonzaga’s NCAA tournament hopes.

Entering Saturday, the Zags had an RPI in the mid-60s, enough to keep them in the bubble conversation but not enough to make them anything more than a team that will be projected to end up on the cut-line.

The issue is a complete lack of quality wins on their résumé. Gonzaga beat UConn in the Bahamas. That’s a borderline top 50 win. They beat Washington, another borderline top 50 win. Beyond that? They swept Pepperdine, beat Tennessee and own a win over Montana. None of those are top 100 wins, and that’s why the SMU game was such a big deal. The Mustangs are a top 25 team. This was a road game. This win was the kind of thing that the Zags could pin at the top of their profile.

But Wiltjer didn’t show up, the Zags had no answer for Moore and they’ll head back to Spokane needing, in all likelihood, to win the WCC’s automatic bid if they want to dance.

POSTERIZED: Cal’s Jaylen Brown has his dunk contest entry

California's Jaylen Brown lays up a shot against Oregon State in the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Saturday, Feb. 13, 2016, in Berkeley, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)
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Cal picked up a big win over Oregon State in Haas Pavilion on Saturday night, and the exclamation point was this emphatic dunk from Jaylen Brown: