Georges Niang

Georges Niang’s career-high gives No. 16 Iowa State win vs. No. 23 Oklahoma

1 Comment

Nothing exemplifies the way that Iowa State wants to play than the biggest shot of Saturday’s game.

Up 73-70 with just under a minute left on the clock, sophomore forward Georges Niang caught a pass 23-feet away from the rim with 22 seconds left on the shot clock, and instead of pulling the ball out and trying to run off a couple more seconds of clock, he fired away.

Dagger.

Niang buried the three, giving him a career-high 27 points, and Melvin Ejim added 22 points and 16 boards as No. 16 Iowa State outlasted No. 23 Oklahoma, 81-75.

The win moved the Cyclones to 4-4 in Big 12 play, while Oklahoma missed a chance to make up a game on first-place Kansas, who fell at Texas on Saturday afternoon.

At this point, the Cyclones aren’t playing for a Big 12 regular season title. Kansas finally lost a game this afternoon, and the Cyclones are still three games off of the pace in the conference standings. Fred Hoiberg’s club is playing for seeding, in both the Big 12 and NCAA tournaments, and the way they can earn a higher seed is by taking care of business at home.

Road wins are not going to be easy to come by in Big 12 play this season, not when there are seven teams at the top of the league that could end up making the NCAA tournament and especially not when you’re a team notorious for your struggles away from home.

Perhaps the best news for Iowa State is that they were able to win this game despite getting an off-night from Deandre Kane, who finished with five points on 2-for-8 shooting. Hoiberg slid Monte Morris into the starting lineup, bringing his sharp-shooters, Naz Long and Matt Thomas, off the bench.

For Oklahoma, it’s tough to be too upset about a loss in Hilton Coliseum.

It is fair to be a bit concerned about Cameron Clark, however. The 6-foot-6 senior has been one of the most improved players in the country this season, but over the last 11 games, Clark has scored in single-digits five times. Part of that is simply the result of reaching league play, where teams know what the senior can do and will be able to better prepare for him.

VIDEO: Nebraska’s Shavon Shields stretchered off after scary fall

IMG_1254
ESPN
Leave a comment

Nebraska forward Shavon Shields was stretchered off of the floor after a scary fall as the Huskers were taking on Rutgers.

Nebraska was up by 17 in the second half when Shields bit on a pump fake and tried to block a Rutgers player’s shot. But his momentum carried him over the player’s shoulder, and he landed on what appeared to be up upper back, neck and right shoulder.

Here is the video. Be warned: it’s a nasty fall:

According to the broadcast, Shields lost consciousness on the floor and was taken to a local hospital.

Rick Pitino: ‘We should be penalized … but not this team’

Rick Pitino
(AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley)
Leave a comment

One of the biggest storylines of Saturday’s college basketball schedule had everything to do with a team that no longer matters in the championship picture.

Less than 24 hours after being informed that the school would be imposing a postseason ban that will leave the Cardinals out of the ACC and NCAA tournaments, No. 19 Louisville tipped off against Boston College, and they did so without leading scorer Damion Lee, who is battling a knee issue.

How would the team respond to the decision — the despicable, shameful decision — that the university’s president made?

Well, it seems.

The Cardinals jumped out to a 19-2 lead in the first eight minutes and cruised to a 79-47 win over an overmatched Boston College team in the Yum! Center.

And head coach Rick Pitino, after the quote, said exactly what everyone is thinking.

“We should be penalized, no question about it,” he said. “But not this team. But the NCAA didn’t make that decision. We made that decision.”

He’s totally right. The school sacrificed the season — and the only shot that a pair of fifth-year seniors would get to play in the NCAA tournament — to protect the school, the brand and the bottom-line moving forward. Like I said earlier, it’s despicable.

But credit the Cardinals for responding.

Because they still have something on the line. They’re just a game out of first place in the ACC, and while an ACC regular season title isn’t a shot to play in the ACC or NCAA tournament, it’s still a banner that would probably mean more to Damion Lee and Trey Lewis than any league title has meant to a Louisville player before.