Late Night Snacks: Michigan, Florida win on road; Wichita State now 26-0

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GAME OF THE DAY: No. 15 Michigan 70, No. 22 Ohio State 60

Ohio State was riding a three-game winning streak. Michigan had lost its last two road games.

The Buckeyes got off to a hot start, but Michigan was able to get back into the game by halftime due to an Ohio State shooting slump. In the second half, freshman point guard Derrick Walton took control. He scored 13 points (all in the second half), had 10 rebounds and dished out six assists. His development will be big for the Wolverines moving forward.

Nik Stauskas had 15 and LaQuinton Ross led all scorers with 24.


Wyoming 68, No. 5 San Diego State 62: Riley Grabau scored 17 points and Larry Nance Jr. chipped in with 14 as the Cowboys knocked off SDSU in Laramie. 

No. 3 Florida 67, Tennessee 58The Gators improved that win streak to 16 games, wearing down the Volunteers with their defense, which forced 15 turnovers and limited Tennessee to 36 percent shooting.

No. 19 Texas 87, Oklahoma State 68This was not a pretty one from the start, as Texas raced out to a big lead and never looked back. The Cowboys looked lost without Marcus Smart. Bad news is they have to do it two more times.

No. 4 Wichita State 78, Southern Illinois 67: This was far from the Shockers best performance but they found a way to win in the second half. Wichita State moves to 26-0.


Javan Felix, Texas: The Texas lead guard went for 27 points, including six 3-pointers. He scored eight straight points for the Longhorns to open up a 22-point lead in the second half.

Derrick Walton, Michigan: He made big play after big play on Tuesday night on his rival’s home floor. And he did it against a stellar defensive back court in Aaron Craft and Shannon Scott.

T.J. Warren, N.C. State: In a win over Clemson, the sophomore forward scored 34 points and grabbed 10 rebounds.


Fred Van Vleet, Wichita State: One of the nation’s top floor generals struggled with foul troubles, only scoring three points, dishing out three assists and committed two turnovers.

Markel Brown, Oklahoma State: With Smart out of the lineup, Brown shot 4-of-14 and 1-of-6 from deep in Oklahoma State’s fifth straight loss.

Ole Miss: The Rebels were looking pretty good, sitting at 7-3 in the SEC, but Trevor Releford had different plans with a last-second 3-pointer in Alabama’s win. Ole Miss is still third in the conference standings, but has Kentucky and Florida, at home, in its next three games.


Sister Jean: “I don’t care that you broke my bracket.”

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As Missouri Valley Conference player of the year Clayton Custer came off the floor after Loyola earned its spot in the Elite Eight after beating Nevada, he had to make a quick apology.

He had to tell the Ramblers’ star fan Sister Jean he was sorry. She, of course, had picked Loyola’s Cinderella run to end in the Sweet 16 in her bracket before the start of the tournament.

The apology was quickly accepted.

“I said I don’t care that you broke my bracket,” Sister Jean said. “I’m ready for the next one.

“For a nice little school like ours, we are just so proud of them.”

Michigan’s hot shooting carries them into the Elite Eight past Texas A&M

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Historically known as a team that lived and died with the three-ball, No. 3-seed Michigan had spent the first weekend of the NCAA tournament proving history wrong.

In an ugly game in their opener against Montana, the Wolverines shot 5-for-16 from three while turning the ball over 14 times and managing a measly 61 points. Against Houston in the second round, Michigan shot 8-for-30 from beyond the arc, with one of those threes coming courtesy of Jordan Poole at the buzzer, sending the Wolverines into the Sweet 16 with a 64-63 win.

Put another way, Michigan looked the part of the defensive grinder that they turned into this season.

Against No. 7-seed Texas A&M in the Sweet 16, however, the Wolverines turned into the Golden State Warriors.

Michigan bested the number of three that they had made in the tournament to date, hitting 14-of-24 bombs while shooting 62 percent from the floor in a 99-72 win over an Aggies team that had finally, for the first time since November, looked the part of the SEC title contender that they have the talent to be.

No. 11 Loyola moves on to Elite Eight after beating No. 7 Nevada

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Loyola is in the Elite Eight.

The Ramblers’ dream run through March continued Thursday as they knocked off No. 7 Nevada, 69-68, in South Region semifinal in Atlanta.

Loyola, an 11th seed making its first NCAA tournament appearance since 1985, will play the winner of Kansas State and Kentucky on Sunday for a chance to return to the Final Four for the first time since it won the 1963 national championship.

Marques Townes hit a 3-pointer with under 10 seconds to play to put the Ramblers up four and put the game all but out of reach for Nevada. Townes finished with 18 points while Clayton Custer had 15.  Loyola shot 55.8 percent from the floor for the game.

The Wolf Pack’s Caleb Martin had 21 points while Jordan Caroline had 19. Nevada shot 41.4 percent from the floor.

Nevada looked like it may overwhelm Loyola early as it built a 12-point lead less than seven minutes into the game. The Ramblers, though, struck back by keeping the Wolf Pack off the board for nearly the last 8 minutes of the first half to take a four-point lead into the break.

The strong play considered on the other side of halftime for Loyola, which astonishingly made its first 13 shots of the second half. Still, despite the perfect start, the Ramblers only briefly took a double-digit lead before Nevada sliced it back down below 10.

Loyola’s inability to build a substantial lead came back to bite it as Nevada, the comeback kids of this tournament, mounted its attack on the deficit and had it erased before the under-four timeout, setting up the final frantic minutes of a battle for a spot in the Elite Eight that the Ramblers claimed thanks to Townes’ late triple.

2018 March Madness: Fans in Times Square pick fake teams in Sweet 16 predictions

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NBC Sports went into Times Square this week to ask basketball fans for their Sweet 16 picks.

The only problem?

The teams in the games are not actually playing in the NCAA Tournament.

They aren’t even actually teams.

Hilarity ensued.

Miami’s Bruce Brown declares for draft without an agent

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Bruce Brown wants to hear what the NBA has to say.

The Miami sophomore has declared for the draft but will not hire an agent, the school announced Thursday.

The 6-foot-5 guard averaged 11.4 points, 7.5 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game during his second season with the Hurricanes. He did, though, see his shooting numbers take a tumble compared to his freshman season with his field goal percentage down from 45.9 to 41.5 percent and his 3-point shoot go from 34.7 to 26.7 percent. There’s also the matter of a foot injury that required surgery and kept him off the floor for the ‘Canes’ last 12 games.

By declaring for the draft, Brown can get in front of NBA teams, who will likely take a very close look at his shooting mechanics after that sophomore season downturn. It will also be an opportunity for him to build up his reputation in the professional ranks after spending much of his sophomore season injured.