NCAA Tournament: No. 4 West Virginia holds off No. 13 Bucknell

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Esa Ahmad scored 15 points and Nathan Adrian registered a double-double of 12 points and 10 boards in No. 4 West Virginia’s 86-80 win over No. 13 seed Bucknell in the first round in Buffalo.

The Mountaineers led for 38 minutes, but had a tight contest with the Bison. It appeared West Virginia was en route to blowing the game wide open after its defense held Bucknell without a point over the final 4:15 of the first half.

Up by a dozen in the early moments of the second half, the Bison began to rally, led by the sharpshooting of Kimbal Mackenzie, who ended with a game-high 23 points. The run was aided by West Virginia’s own offensive woes. Bucknell pushed the ball on every missed shot, resulting in several fast break 3-pointers. After cutting the deficit to three on several occasions, the Bison’s comeback attempt lost some momentum when Nana Foulland picked up his fourth foul. At that time, the 6-foot-9 junior, had 17 points with 9:37 remaining in regulation.

“Well, we weren’t very good today in pressure,” West Virginia head coach Bob Huggins told reporters after the game. “He [Nathan Adrian]and J.C. [Jevon Carter] were pretty good. The rest of our guys kind of called it off way too early.”

West Virginia kept it at a two-possession game before closing it out from the free throw line.

Press Virginia wasn’t its normal self, getting beat up in transition by the Bison. But its depth did appear to get to Bucknell. Lamont West and Tarik Phillip combining for 31 points off the bench. West Virginia held a 37-5 edge in that department. The Mountaineers also dominated the offensive glass, cashing in on 20 second-chance points.

West Virginia advances to play No. 5 seed Notre Dame on Saturday. It’ll be an interesting matchup with the Mountaineers attempting to turn over a Fighting Irish squad that is one of the best at taking care of the ball.

VIDEO: Zion Williamson throws down a vicious putback

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Zion Williamson made another highlight-reel play on Saturday outside of Atlanta as he threw down a vicious putback dunk at the Best of the South.

The five-star prospect has returned from a minor knee injury this spring to look like his old self in July as he’s entertained packed gyms of fans and college coaches the last two weeks.

The Class of 2018 star is currently regarded as the No. 3 overall prospect in the latest national rankings.

(h/t: Courtside Films)

Five-star 2018 point guard Darius Garland cuts list to six schools

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Five-star Class of 2018 point guard Darius Garland revealed the final six schools that he’s considering on Friday.

The N0. 12 overall prospect in the Class of 2018, according to Rivals, the 6-foot-0 Garland is one of the top floor generals in the nation as he is still considering Duke, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, UCLA and Vanderbilt.

A native of Nashville, Garland is a potentially elite perimeter threat at the college level as he’s one of the more deadly three-point marksmen in the nation.

Garland spent this spring and summer playing with Bradley Beal Elite in the Nike EYBL as he averaged 16.8 points and 4.8 assists per game in the league this spring.

VIDEO: Kentucky’s John Calipari participates in the #DriveByDunkChallenge

(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
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The #DriveByDunkChallenge is sweeping the nation on social media this summer.

Rules to participate are pretty simple:

  1. Drive around in your vehicle.
  2. Find a basketball hoop (or a basketball ring if you’re Ted Cruz) on a random driveway.
  3. Run out of your car and dunk on that random hoop while a friend films.
  4. Run back to your car and drive away.

Let Anthony Davis show you how it works:

Pretty simple, right?

The #DriveByDunkChallenge isn’t raising money or awareness for ALS like the #IceBucketChallenge did three years ago, but it’s something harmless and fun to do to pass the time during the dog days of summer.

Sensing an opportunity to join an Internet craze, while also following in the footsteps of his former player Kentucky star, Wildcats head coach John Calipari got involved with his own dunk late Friday night.

And his video is much funnier than I thought it would be.

While most #DriveByDunkChallenge videos are done by healthy and spry teenagers who are cruising neighborhoods during the day, Calipari, and his hip replacement, got in on the fun with a late-night dunk.

I love that Calipari ditched the ball behind his back while running back to the car after the dunk.

Most people who participate in the challenge usually have their own ball and keep it with them through completion. But Calipari either picked up a random ball in the driveway or just he lost the handle with his own ball and had a turnover.

The next time Calipari goes hard on one of his point guards for losing control and playing too fast, remember this moment.

Creighton’s Khyri Thomas posterizes defender

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Creighton rising junior wing Khyri Thomas, like several of his teammates, are taking part in the Omaha Summer League this offseason.

On Thursday night, the 6-foot-3, 205-lb. Thomas eviscerated a defender with a one-handed posterization.

Thomas is coming off a breakout sophomore campaign for the Bluejays. He started all 35 games, averaging 12.3 points, 5.8 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.5 steals per game. Aside from the increase in offensive production, Thomas served as one of the top defenders in the Big East. He shared the Big East Defensive Player of the Year Award with Villanova’s Josh Hart and Mikal Bridges.

Zion Williamson throws down 360 windmill dunk

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Zion Williamson added another jaw-dropping dunk in the layup lines on the first night of the second live evaluation period.

Williamson and his SC Supreme team took on Each 1 Teach 1 at the Hoopseen Best of the South at the LakePoint Sporting Community in greater Atlanta.

The 6-foot-7 power forward threw down a 360 windmill dunk during his pregame routines.

Each 1 Teach 1 would pick up a 70-67 victory over SC Supreme. Williamson would end with a monster stat line of 37 points and seven rebounds.