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No. 7 Oregon gets past No. 10 BYU behind big effort from reserve forward Elgin Cook

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MILWAUKEE — No. 7 seed Oregon was mired in foul trouble in the middle of the second half against No. 10 seed BYU on Thursday in a West Region Round of 64 contest. Senior forward Mike Moser picked up his fourth foul with 14:22 left in the half and senior big man Waverly Austin also had three fouls early in the half. BYU cut Oregon’s lead to, 56-53, with 12:03 left and the Cougars looked like they had a lot of momentum after three, second-half three-pointers.

Enter Elgin Cook.

The redshirt sophomore — and Milwaukee native — scored on a three-point play on the next play to give Oregon (24-9) a 59-53 lead and it ignited a 31-15 Oregon run to lead the Ducks to an 87-68 win over the Cougars at the BMO Harris Bradley Center.

Cook picked a great time to have the best game of his career as the son of former Milwaukee Bucks All-Star guard Alvin Robertson went for 23 points and eight rebounds off the bench on 8-for-9 shooting from the field.

Cook had scored in double-figures once since December 12th and it was only his eighth double-figure outing of the season.

Oregon junior guard Joseph Young added 17 points and senior guard Jason Calliste contributed 14 points off the bench as well for Oregon.

The Ducks ran past BYU — who they defeated 100-96 in overtime on December 21st in Eugene — despite shooting only 15 percent from the three-point line (2-for-13). But Oregon pounded the ball on the interior as they shot 50 percent (27-for-54) overall while also going 31-for-38 from the free throw line.

Despite cutting Oregon’s lead to three points in the second half, BYU (23-12) could never seem to get it going as they shot 32 percent from the field (20-for-61) and 26 percent from the three-point line (5-for-19). Tyler Haws led four Cougars in double-figures with 19 points while Erik Mika (15 points), Matt Carlino (15 points) and Frank Bartley IV (10 points) also contributed.

No. 7 seed Oregon advances to face No. 2 seed Wisconsin in a Round of 32 contest in the West Region on Saturday in Milwaukee.

PHOTO: Baylor shows off new uniforms

Scott Drew
Associated Press
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Wednesday afternoon the Baylor basketball program sent out some images of its uniform combinations for the upcoming season, and the volt color way that first made a splash in 2012 is back. Baylor’s got four different uniforms it can wear this season: home (white), away (green) and two alternate uniforms.

While there is some volt green in each of the four uniforms, its presence is relatively tame compared to the uniforms Scott Drew’s program wore back in 2012. Of course those uniforms were part of adidas’ AdiZero uniform¬†release (Baylor is now outfitted by Nike), with two other schools (Cincinnati and Louisville) wearing colorful uniforms with shorts that had “interesting” patterns on them.

While some of the new uniform designs in college sports have received some pushback from fans and alums, this stuff is about the players and recruits programs look to land for the future. Everyone likes free stuff, and when it comes to apparel for young athletes having something that’s both free and “exclusive” is seen as a positive.

Pressure is on new coach Steve Prohm at Iowa State

Steve Prohm
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AMES, Iowa (AP) Five months ago, Iowa State’s Steve Prohm was the coach at mid-major Murray State. Now he’s in charge of one of the big favorites in the Big 12.

Prohm officially began his first season in charge of the Cyclones on Tuesday with the team’s annual media day.

Iowa State has all the pieces to make a run at the league title and more – provided that Prohm can handle coaching college basketball at the highest level, of course.

In the minds of Prohm’s players, the Cyclones have nothing to worry about.

“Coach (Prohm) is in here earning our trust and our respect every day,” said senior forward Georges Niang. “Even though he’s not trying to cross any of our toes, he puts his foot down when he needs to and lets us know that stuff needs to get done. I think he has a great combination of how to keep us motivated…and still be stern and be able to get the most out of us.”

Fred Hoiberg’s departure for the Chicago Bulls after five mostly successful seasons gave Prohm a shot at a national title. The roster Hoiberg left behind for Prohm is loaded.

Niang, a likely preseason first-team All-American, second-team All-Big 12 point guard Monte Morris and league defensive player of the year Jameel McKay headline one of the nation’s most talented starting units. Throw in veterans like Naz Long, Matt Thomas, Abdel Nader and transfer Deonte Burton, and Prohm might just have the best roster a new Power Five coach has inherited since Bill Guthridge took over for Dean Smith at North Carolina in 1997.

Guthridge reached the Final Four with his first team.

Prohm isn’t shying away from the notion that Iowa State is among the handful of teams with serious national title aspirations.

“Yeah, they’re realistic,” Prohm said when asked about the sky-high expectations for this year’s team. “I think we have the opportunity to have a very special season.”

The similarities between what type of styles Prohm and Hoiberg use was cited as a big reason why Iowa State hired him. Hoiberg even lobbied for Prohm to athletic director Jamie Pollard during the hiring process.

To that end, Prohm is going to let his players have a ton of input on how they play. Prohm doesn’t plan many changes, just tweaks that mostly involve techniques to improve Iowa State’s somewhat inconsistent rebounding and defense.

“I don’t need to say, `This is the way we’re doing things guys because this is the way I did it.’ That’s stupid,” Prohm said. “I need to meet these guys halfway.”

Prohm also acknowledged that he’ll be doing quite a bit of learning himself this season. But Prohm said he intends to embrace the unique opportunity he’s been afforded.

“This is a great situation to walk into. No question,” Prohm said. “Is there pressure? Yeah. But who wants a job with no pressure?”