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Late Night Snacks: Kansas State topples Kansas in Sunflower Showdown

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GAME OF THE DAY: Kansas State 85, No. 7 Kansas 82, OT

Another Monday, another Big 12 overtime game. Kansas State held off Kansas on Monday as the Wildcats were just 3-48 against the Jayhawks since 1994 entering the night’s contest. Marcus Foster and the Wilcats held off a furious nine-point comeback from Kansas in the game’s final two minutes to force overtime, but Kansas State continued to remain the aggressor in overtime and ultimately held on for the win.

I have more on this game while Rob Dauster looks into the Kansas side of things.

IMPORTANT OUTCOMES

1) Grambling State 95, Alcorn State 80

The Tigers snapped a nearly two-year streak of games against Division I opponents with their SWAC win on Monday night as Grambling State is finally in the win column against a DI team for the first time since the 2011-12 season. Grambling State hadn’t won a game against a Division I opponent since defeating Alabama A&M in overtime on March 2nd, 2012.

You can read more on the streak-snapping win for Grambling State here.

2) West Virginia 102, No. 11 Iowa State 77

It was a huge home win for the surging Mountaineers as Bob Huggins’ bunch looks really good all of the sudden. West Virginia had at least 50 points in both halves on Monday and they held Melvin Ejim to only six points after Ejim went for 48 points on Saturday.

Rob Dauster has more on this one.

3) Georgetown 83, Providence 71

Georgetown looked to be in serious trouble after five straight Big East losses, but JT3’s ballclub has responded with four straight wins as Jabril Trawick continues to work his way back into the rotation for Georgetown. The Hoyas have a tough six-game stretch ahead of them in the Big East, but they’re playing far better ball as we enter the stretch run of conference play.

I have more on this one as well.

STARRED

1) Virginia senior Joe Harris stepped up with 16 of his 19 points in the second half to lead the Cavaliers to a 61-53 win over Maryland. Virginia has won eight straight games.

2) Southern held off Jackson State, 68-63, to win its 11th game in 12 tries and move to 10-1 in the SWAC. Southern holds a two-game SWAC lead.

3) Torrey Craig went for 22 points and 15 rebounds in USC Upstate’s 75-63 win over East Tennessee State. Craig surpassed the 2,000 career point mark in the win and also had a ridiculous alley-oop.

STRUGGLED

1) Florida State might have had its bubble burst on Monday with a 77-73 home loss to Miami. The Seminoles dropped to 14-10 and 5-7 in the ACC with the loss.

2) Bad loss for Towson (16-9, 7-3 CAA) on Monday as the Tigers fell to UNC-Wilmington, who was 0-10 in the CAA entering the weather-postponed contest.

3) Iowa State was 4-for-23 from the three-point line in a loss to West Virginia on Monday. The Cyclones were badly outplayed for much of the road loss.

Arizona lands first commitment in 2017 class

Alex Barcello (Jon Lopez/Nike)
(Jon Lopez/Nike)
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Arizona landed their first commitment in the Class of 2017 on Friday night as point guard Alex Barcello pledged to Sean Miller and the Wildcats.

Barcello is a 6-foot-2 point guard from Tempe who plays his high school ball for Corona del Sol. He committed to the Wildcats on an official visit to the Tucson campus.

Barcello is a borderline top 100 prospect who sits at No. 123 in the Rivals top 150. He’s known for his ability to shoot, and he’s more of a combo-guard — i.e. shoot-first — than a point guard at times, but he’s a nice pickup and projects as a solid four-year player for the Wildcats.

Virginia, Indiana, Stanford and Butler were the other four schools on Barcello’s list.

Duke lands first commitment in 2017 class

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Alex O’Connell knew exactly where he wanted to play his college ball, which is why, just two days after picking up an offer from Coach K and the Blue Devils, he became Duke’s first recruit in the Class of 2017.

O’Connell announced the on twitter on Friday afternoon:

O’Connell is a four-star prospect from Georgia that had a terrific summer, going from being a borderline top 75 prospect to a player that caught the interest of Duke, who, along with Kentucky, sit atop the college recruiting hierarchy. He’s an explosively athletic and lanky 6-foot-6 wing with three-point range on his jumper. He needs to add some weight and some strength — he’s listed as a crisp 175 pounds — but he has the tools, and the swagger, to develop into a very effective player in the ACC.

Is he a one-and-done prospect?

Probably not. In fact, since 2010, Duke has landed just two players that were rated lower than O’Connell: Antonio Vrankovic and Jack White. If you know who both of them are, you’re probably either Jon Scheyer or lying.

But what O’Connell is is a kid who put in the work to get better this past year and who has the skill set, the physical tools and work ethic to continue to improve. He may not be on Grayson Allen’s trajectory, but O’Connell has the makings of being an impact player for the Blue Devils for three or four years.

Alex O'Connell (Jon Lopez/Nike)
Alex O’Connell (Jon Lopez/Nike)

Shaka Smart lands contract extension at Texas

Texas head coach Shaka Smart instructs his team in the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Baylor on Monday, Feb. 1, 2016, in Waco, Texas. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez
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Shaka Smart has already landed himself a contract extension at Texas.

The school, according to the Austin American-Statesman, has given Shaka a one-year extension — through the 2022-23 season — and bumped his salary up to a cool $3 million, a raise of $100,000 annually.

Smart’s Longhorns went 20-13 last season and lost on a half court buzzer beater from Northern Iowa’s Paul Jespersen. It will be tough for Smart to match the success that he had last season, specifically because he lost senior point guard Isaiah Taylor to the professional ranks.

That said, the former VCU head man has been reeling in quite a bit of talent from the state of Texas — namely, Andrew Jones and Jarrett Allen — and is not all that far from turning the Longhorns back into a relevant member of the Big 12 title race.

Arizona and Texas headline Lone Star Shootout

PROVIDENCE, RI - MARCH 17:  Head coach Sean Miller of the Arizona Wildcats reacts in the first half against the Wichita State Shockers during the first round of the 2016 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at Dunkin' Donuts Center on March 17, 2016 in Providence, Rhode Island.  (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
Jim Rogash/Getty Images
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Another marquee, early season event is on the books for the college basketball season as four potential tournament teams will be squaring off at the Toyota Center in Houston on Dec. 17th.

The highlight of the double-header, which has been dubbed the Lone Star Shootout, will probably end up being Arizona vs. Texas A&M. The Wildcats are a Pac-12 contender and a borderline top 10 team as we enter the season, and while the Aggies will have work to do replacing the seniors they lost off of last season’s roster, they’re a borderline top 25 team.

The other matchup will feature a pair of former Southwest Conference rivals facing off in Texas and Arkansas. Texas will be talented but young while Arkansas may actually have the best player on the floor in Moses Kingsley. What will make this matchup interesting is that both Mike Anderson and Shaka Smart are known for being coaches that prefer a full court pressing system.

“We are extremely excited about the opportunity to play in front of our fans at the Toyota Center in Houston,” Texas head coach Shaka Smart said in a statement. “It is one of the most important areas in this state as it relates to our recruiting and fan base.

Five-star 2017 guard Lonnie Walker cuts list to five schools

Men's U18 trials head shots and team photo on 6.15.16
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Five-star shooting guard Lonnie Walker is coming off of a very good summer as he trimmed his list to five schools on Thursday night.

The 6-foot-4 native of Reading, Pennsylvania is still considering Arizona, Kentucky, Miami, Syracuse and Villanova, he announced on Twitter.

Regarded as the No. 26 overall prospect in the Class of 2017, Walker played with Team Final in the Nike EYBL this spring and summer as he averaged 16.6 points, 4.7 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game. Walker shot 45 percent from the field, 39 percent from three-point range and 72 percent from the free-throw line.

An efficient scorer who is learning to drive with both hands, Walker is very talented and the type of guard who might also be able to handle a bit as well.