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LATE NIGHT SNACKS: No. 7 Arizona falls, No. 5 Michigan State rolls

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GAME OF THE NIGHT: UCLA 87, No. 7 Arizona 84

Bryce Alford’s three-pointer with 1.8 seconds remaining gave the Bruins the win in a game they led by 15 with five minutes remaining. How’d Arizona get back into the game? A combination of better execution offensively and some bad UCLA possessions on the other end of the floor. Alford led four Bruins in double figures with 25 points and also dished out six assists, while Ryan Anderson led Arizona with 15 points and 15 rebounds. The question coming out of this one: why can’t UCLA play with the effort and energy they displayed for much of this game on a consistent basis?

IMPORTANT OUTCOMES

No. 15 SMU 59, Cincinnati 57: Nic Moore hit two huge threes and Jordan Tolbert added a tip-in and a key blocked shot as the Mustangs outscored Cincinnati 11-2 over the final 3:09. SMU had four players in double figures and managed to win (and remain undefeated) despite having just six scholarship players for most of the game.

No. 16 Louisville 77, NC State 72: Quentin Snider scored 21 points and played some solid defense on Cat Barber to help lead the Cardinals to a five-point win in Raleigh. Barber scored 20 points for the Wolfpack but did so on 7-for-22 shooting, with Snider and the other Louisville guards being a key reason why. As a team NC State shot just 36.1 percent from the field.

STARRED

Weber State’s Joel Bolomboy: One of the best rebounders in the country, Bolomboy scored 20 points and grabbed 23 rebounds in a win over North Dakota.

Ole Miss’ Sebastian Saiz: Saiz tallied 21 points and 16 rebounds in a win over Alabama.

Manhattan’s Shane Richards: Richards shot 11-for-14 from the field, making six of his seven three-pointers, to score 32 points in a win at Canisius.

BYU’s Kyle Collinsworth: Collinsworth picked up the ninth triple-double of his career, going for 21 points, 11 rebounds and ten assists in a blowout win over Santa Clara.

STRUGGLED

Michigan’s Zak Irvin: Irvin scored seven points on 2-for-10 shooting in a loss at No. 20 Purdue. Of course, being guarded for most of the game by one of the best defenders in the country in Rapheal Davis doesn’t help matters.

Bryant’s Nisre Zouzoua: Zouzoua shot 1-for-8 from the field, scoring two points in a loss at Wagner.

Georgia Southern’s Tookie Brown: Brown scored 17 points in a six-point loss to South Alabama, but he shot 5-for-18 from the field in doing so.

THE REST OF THE TOP 25

  • With Denzel Valentine out of the lineup No. 5 Michigan State rolled to a 79-54 win over Illinois in East Lansing. Bryn Forbes scored 17 for the Spartans, who expect Valentine to return to the lineup this weekend.
  • Also taking care of business at home was No. 20 Purdue, which beat Michigan 87-70. A.J. Hammons, who finished with 17 points, five rebounds, three assists and four blocks, moved to 4-for-4 on the season from three and Rapheal Davis added 16 points and six boards.

OTHER NOTABLE RESULTS

  • Notre Dame won 82-54 at Boston College, with Demetrius Jackson scoring 17 points and dishing out nine assists.
  • Darell Combs scored 18 points to lead IUPUI to a 74-67 win over South Dakota State. The Jackrabbits shot just 7-for-28 from three on the night.
  • Terry Tarpey finished with 21 points, six rebounds and six steals in William & Mary’s 72-63 win at Drexel.
  • Shane Richards scored a career-high 32 points to lead Manhattan to a 94-86 win at Canisius.
  • Old Dominion ended Louisiana Tech’s 39-game home win streak with a 56-53 victory in Ruston. Trey Freeman and Aaron Bacote combined to score 38 points for the Monarchs.
  • UT-Arlington moved to 3-0 in the Sun Belt with a 71-67 win at Appalachian State. Jalen Jones scored 14 points and Erick Neal 13 for the 12-2 Mavericks.
  • Weber State moved to 2-0 in the Big Sky with a 74-62 win over North Dakota. In addition to Joel Bolomboy’s impressive stat line, Jeremy Senglin scored a game-high 26 for the winners.
  • Ole Miss opened its sparkling new building with a 74-66 win over Alabama. Sebastian Saiz and Stefan Moody scored 21 apiece, with Saiz also grabbing 16 rebounds.
  • Walter Wright scored 22 points and dished out nine assists to lead Montana to a 79-66 win over Portland State. The Grizzlies, who lost in last year’s Big Sky title game, are now 3-0 in conference play.
  • Pascal Siakam finished with 20 points, 11 rebounds and four blocks in New Mexico State’s 78-66 win at Utah Valley.
  • Saint Mary’s remained undefeated in WCC play with a comfortable 73-48 win at Loyola Marymount. Emmett Naar scored 15 points, grabbed five rebounds and dished out five assists for the Gaels.
  • USC moved to 2-1 in Pac-12 play with a 75-65 win over Arizona State. The Trojans led by as much as 16 in the second half before the Sun Devils rallied to within two, but Bobby Hurley’s team was unable to get over the hump.
  • Preseason Big West favorite UC Irvine took care of the reigning regular season champions UC Davis by 21, 76-55. Luke Nelson led the balanced offensive effort with 16 points.
  • Cal-State Fullerton erased a 20-point second half deficit to win by six at UC Riverside. Lionheart Leslie led five Titans in double figures with 25 points.

Texas’ Jones out with a broken wrist

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Texas may be without its leading scorer heading into conference play.

Longhorns coach Shaka Smart announced Monday that sophomore Andrew Jones suffered a hairline fracture in his right wrist and will be sidelined for the foreseeable future.

“Fortunately it’s not one of those injuries where he should be out for an extended long period of time,” Smart said at his news conference Monday, “but he’s going to miss at least the next few games before Christmas. They decided not to put it in a cast, which is good news.”

Jones suffered the injury last week against VCU when he took a number of tumbles to the floor. He’s averaging 15.3 points while shooting 52.4 percent from the floor and 43.2 percent from 3-point range.

“It’s a tough injury for us because he’s our leading scorer and has done a phenomenal job for us this year,” Smart said. “We’re going to need everyone on our team, not just guards, but everyone on our team to step up and take a little more responsibility.

“Your margin for error is a little smaller.”

The Longhorns, who are 6-2 with losses to Duke and Gonzaga, face Michigan on Tuesday, Louisiana Tech on Saturday and Alabama next week. Jones is certainly out for those games, and his availability for Texas’ first Big 12 games – Dec. 29 vs. Kansas and Jan. 1 at Iowa State – would seem to be in question.

“We don’t have an exact timeframe,” Smart said. “It’s really good news they didn’t put it in a cast.

“We’re hopeful that we can get him back in three, four weeks, but that’s not a set timetable.”

 

Coaches Poll: Villanova climbs to the No. 1 spot

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The new top 25 coaches poll is out, and the No. 1 team in college basketball is now Villanova.

Michigan State, who received 10 of a possible 32 first-place votes, came in at No. 2 while Duke, last week’s No. 1 team, fell to No. 4 with a loss to Boston College.

After winning at Kansas this week, Arizona State vaulted up to the No. 6 spot, while the Jayhawks fell to No. 12.

Here is the full coaches poll.

1. Villanova (22 first-place votes)
2. Michigan State (10)
3. Wichita State
4. Duke
5. Kentucky
6. Arizona State
7. North Carolina
8. Miami
9. Xavier
10. Texas A&M
11. West Virginia
12. Kansas
13. Gonzaga
14. TCU
15. Seton Hall
16. Virginia
17. Purdue
18. Notre Dame
19. Florida State
20. Tennessee
21. Baylor
22. Florida
23. Arizona
24. Oklahoma
25. Creighton

Villanova hops over Michigan State for No. 1 in AP Top 25

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Villanova’s unbeaten start now includes a No. 1 ranking in the AP Top 25 , while Arizona State is making a rapid rise into the top 10 under third-year coach Bobby Hurley.

After a tumultuous week in which unanimous No. 1 Duke and No. 2 Kansas lost, the Wildcats (10-0) earned 41 of 65 first-place votes to hop over Michigan State and reach the top for the third straight season.

Villanova and Michigan State were the favorites to take over at the top after the Blue Devils’ weekend loss at Boston College, though there was far less certainty for voters about who was now the nation’s top team. The Spartans (9-1) earned 19 first-place votes to climb from third to second, while the other five first-place votes went to the Sun Devils — who leapt 11 spots to No. 5 after Sunday’s win at Kansas.

Arizona State (9-0) is off to its best start since the 1974-75 season. Now the Sun Devils — who also have a win against Xavier this season — have their highest ranking since reaching third during the 1980-81 season.

Wichita State climbed three spots to No. 3, followed by Duke and Arizona State. Unbeaten Miami climbed four spots to No. 6, followed by North Carolina, Kentucky, Texas A&M and Xavier to round out the top 10.

Villanova helped itself with an impressive win against No. 12 Gonzaga last week in New York, though the Wildcats had to fight to the final minute Sunday to close out a La Salle team that entered at 5-5.

“It’s always an honor to be ranked No. 1,” Villanova coach Jay Wright said in a statement. “It’s great for the Nova Nation and we appreciate the respect of the writers. We know it’s early, though, and we need to get a lot better.”

KANSAS’ FALL

The Jayhawks (7-2) slid 11 spots to No. 13 after two losses last week, the first coming against Washington in Kansas City, Missouri, before losing to the Sun Devils in Allen Fieldhouse.

SHUFFLE UP

Only two teams — No. 8 Kentucky and No. 12 Gonzaga — stayed in the same spot. Thirteen teams rose in the poll, while four of the seven teams that fell slid at least eight spots.

TOP RISERS

Arizona State’s leap was the biggest, though No. 11 West Virginia (9-1) moved up seven spots after beating then-No. 15 Virginia. No. 14 TCU (10-0) climbed six spots after a win against a then-ranked Nevada team.

Miami, UNC, No. 15 Seton Hall, No. 17 Purdue and No. 20 Tennessee all climbed four spots.

LONGEST SLIDES

While Kansas’ losses stood out, No. 22 Florida had the biggest fall of the week.

The Gators (6-3) slid 17 spots after home losses to Florida State and to Loyola Chicago — a game in which they led for all of 93 seconds. Florida salvaged a win against Cincinnati in the Never Forget Tribute Classic in Newark, New Jersey, to avoid a four-game skid.

No. 18 Notre Dame (8-2) fell nine spots after an upset loss to Ball State, while the No. 25 Bearcats (7-2) slid eight spots.

NEWCOMERS

There were three newcomers to this week’s poll, though one is more of a welcome back.

The list included No. 19 Florida State (9-0) and No. 24 Texas Tech (7-1), while Arizona returned to the rankings at No. 23.

Arizona’s 0-3 showing at the Battle 4 Atlantis in the Bahamas made the Wildcats the first team in three decades to go from No. 2 in the AP Top 25 to unranked in a week. But four straight wins have the preseason Final Four favorite back in the poll.

SLIDING OUT

Minnesota (No. 14 last week), Nevada (No. 22) and Southern California (No. 25) all fell out of the poll.

1. Villanova (41 first-place votes)
2. Michigan State (19)
3. Wichita State
4. Duke
5. Arizona State (5)
6. Miami
7. North Carolina
8. Kentucky
9. Texas A&M
10. Xavier
11. West Virginia
12. Gonzaga
13. Kansas
14. TCU
15. Seton Hall
16. Virginia
17. Purdue
18. Notre Dame
19. Florida State
20. Tennessee
21. Baylor
22. Florida
23. Arizona
24. Texas Tech
25. Cincinnati

Expelled Yale captain has enrolled at Belmont University

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NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) — Former Yale basketball captain Jack Montague, who was expelled from the Ivy League school in 2016 for sexual misconduct, has enrolled at Belmont University in Tennessee.

Montague, who is still suing to be readmitted to Yale, complained in a court deposition last spring that he was unable to apply to other schools. He said Yale would not release his transcript until he paid a disputed tuition bill.

Karen Schwartzman, a spokeswoman for Montague, says Yale later released the transcript, allowing Montague to enroll at Belmont this fall. She says not all of his credits transferred and he will need two semesters to graduate.

He exhausted his basketball eligibility at Yale.

Montague denies the sexual misconduct allegations. No criminal charges were ever sought.

Yale’s attorneys have said the school and its officials acted appropriately.

The lawsuit, which also seeks monetary damages, is expected to go to trial next year.

Player of the Week: Tayler Persons, Ball State

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In a week where Jy Bowman put 30 on Duke, Tra Holder had 29 in Phog Allen Fieldhouse and Mikal Bridges popped off for 28 in Madison Square Garden, the Player of the Week this week was shockingly easy to pick.

Tayler Persons, Ball State.

And I know what you’re saying. “Who?”

That was my reaction, too, when I found out that Persons was the man that hit the game-winning 25-footer to give the Cardinals a victory at No. 9 Notre Dame on Tuesday. When he hit another game-winner against Valpo on Saturday, I knew who he was.

And when I realized that, in those two games, Ball State’s leading scorer had averaged 23.5 points, 5. boards and 4.0 assists in those two wins, it made sense.

If you’re going to hit the game-winning shot in the two biggest wins of the season for your team, chances are that you’re a pretty good player.

I do have some advice for young Tayler, however.

He left 1.5 seconds on the clock at Notre Dame and 3.3 seconds on the clock against Valpo. Next time, make the shot at the buzzer. It’s cooler that way, and you’ll probably get on Sportscenter.

THE ALL-‘THEY WERE GOOD, TOO’ TEAM

  • KY BOWMAN, Boston College: Bowman damn near had a triple-double on Saturday, finishing with 30 points, 10 boards and nine assists to lead Boston College to a 89-84 upset win over No. 1 Duke. His partner in crime, Jerome Robinson, was pretty good as well. He finished with 25 points, including a pair of massive threes in the final five minutes of the game.
  • MIKAL BRIDGES, Villanova: Bridges has been having a terrific season, but he finally had his moment on Tuesday in the Jimmy V Classic. Bridges went for 28 points and six boards, including an emphatic dunk, as the Wildcats knocked off No. 12 Gonzaga is fairly uneventful fashion.
  • TERANCE MANN, Florida State: Mann has been Florida State’s best player this season, and he was certainly their best player on Monday, when the Seminoles went into the O-Dome and knocked off their rival, Florida, by 17 points. Mann went for 25 points in that one.
  • TRA HOLDER, Arizona State: Holder had 29 points and seven assists as the Sun Devils went into Phog Allen Fieldhouse and knocked off No. 2 Kansas, 95-85, and you can make the argument that it wasn’t one of his two-best performances of the season. That’s pretty good.
  • LANDRY SHAMET, Wichita State: After going for 21 points and eight assists to lead the Shockers past South Dakota State on Tuesday night, Shamet had a career-high 30 points to help Gregg Marshall’s club come from behind to beat Oklahoma State in Stillwater.