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Edwards, Swanigan carry No. 4 Purdue past No. 13 Vermont

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Vince Edwards went for 21 points and first-team all-american Caleb Swanigan added 16 points and 14 boards as No. 4 seed Purdue survived a fight from No. 13 seed Vermont, 80-70.

And a fight it was.

Vermont held the lead for much of the first half, thanks in large part to Anthony Lamb, their freshman big man that scored 13 of his 20 points in the first half. Point guard Trae Bell-Haynes added 15 points, seven boards and six assists for the Catamounts, who were within a possession for the majority of the second half before the Boilermakers pulled away down the stretch.

The reason that Purdue was able to pull away was their size inside. Swanigan and Edwards were just too much, and when the smaller Catamount roster had to double-down and help out in the paint, the Boilermakers were able to hit enough threes to make Vermont pay. Purdue finished the night 9-for-20 from beyond the arc.

With the win, Purdue advances to face the winner of tonight’s No. 5 Iowa State-No. 12 Nevada game.

Donte DiVincenzo leads sluggish No. 1 Villanova past No. 16 Mount St. Mary’s

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Mount St. Mary’s didn’t go down easy.

The Mountaineers scored the first seven points of the game, held Villanova scoreless for the first six minutes and went into the half leading the tournament’s No. 1 overall seed, 30-29.

And then the Wildcats turned it on.

A 14-2 run to start the second half was the spark, and the Wildcats eventually pulled away, winning 76-56 and advancing to face the winner of No. 8 Wisconsin and No. 9 Virginia Tech, the nightcap in Buffalo on Thursday.

Donte DiVincenzo led the way with 21 points and 13 boards for the Wildcats, the only member of the team that actually showed up ready to play in the first half. Jalen Brunson added 14 points and Mikal Bridges chipped in with 13, but it was DiVincenzo that did the heavy lifting in keeping Villanova from becoming the first No. 1 seed to lose to a No. 16 seed.

There’s not really much else to take away from this.

The Mount availed themselves well against a team that is clearly their superior, and the Wildcats ran an overmatched opponent off the floor when they finally decided to play.

NCAA Tournament DOH! moments: Vanderbilt’s Matthew Fisher-Davis is not alone

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In honor of Vanderbilt’s Matthew Fisher-Davis committing what was undoubtedly one of the dumbest plays of the college basketball season, we’re going to take a look at some other stupidity that has cost a team a game — or, in some cases, a national title — in the NCAA tournament.

You’re not alone in this, Matthew.

If you know of any dumb NCAA Tournament plays that we missed, please let us know. We love this stuff.

Chris Webber calls a timeout: With the Fab Five down by two points and 19 seconds left in the 1993 national title game, Michigan’s Chris Webber grabbed a rebound, sprinted the length of the floor with the ball and called a timeout that the Wolverines didn’t have. The Tar Heels got free throws and the ball and, at the end of the day, a ring.

Fred Brown throws the ball to James Worthy: Everyone remembers the game-winning jumper that Michael Jordan hit in the 1982 national title game. What people don’t remember is that on the following possession, Georgetown’s Fred Brown threw a pass to UNC’s James Worthy because he momentarily forgot who was actually on his team.

John Calipari’s aversion to free throws: In the 2008 national title game, Coach Cal’s Memphis team had a chance to ice the game from the foul line, missed free throw after free throw and then, up by three with 8.8 seconds left, did not foul, allowing Mario Chalmers to make this memorable, game-tying jumper. Bill Self’s only national title was earned in overtime of this game:

Nasir Robinson saves Shelvin Mack: I still don’t understand how the final 2.2 seconds of this game played out. After Butler’s Andrew Smith scored a go-ahead basket, Pitt threw the ball all the way up the floor only to see Mack, for some reason, tackle Gilbert Brown with 1.4 seconds left on the clock. Brown would tie the game at the line, but after he missed the second free throw, his teammate, Nasir Robinson, fouled Butler’s Matt Howard with just 0.6 seconds left.

It’s mind-boggling:

North Carolina and Washington were drunk, I think: There is too much dumb in the end of this game for me to handle. To start, Washington’s Venoy Overton shoots a half-court shot with more than three seconds left on the clock. Then, John Henson of North Carolina knocks the ball out of bounds. Then Washington’s Isaiah Thomas shoots a two when the Huskies are down three, but Henson, for some reason, decides that the best course of action for him is to very nearly goal-tend the shot. Ay yi yi.

Syracuse loses on a blown over-and-back call: Do dumb calls from referees count here? Because this ref cost Syracuse a second round game with a blown over-and-back call on Scoop Jardine:

Matthew Fisher-Davis did what? In case you forgot what prompted this list, here’s a reminder.

VIDEO: Northwestern earns first tournament win after Vanderbilt commits intentional foul up one

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No. 8 Northwestern won the first NCAA tournament game in the history of the program thanks to some clutch shooting and a bone-headed foul committed by No. 9 Vanderbilt.

The Wildcats and the Commodores traded baskets for the final two minutes of this game, with the lead changing hands seven times in that stretch. After Vandy’s Riley LaChance scored a tough runner with just under 20 seconds left in the game to give the ‘Dores a 66-65 lead, teammate Matthew Fisher-Davis lost his mind and committed an intentional foul in the back court:

Bryant McIntosh would hit both free throws and LaChance missed a go-ahead three with five seconds left, as the Wildcats would go on to win, 68-66.

Fisher-Davis said he thought Vandy was down 1. When Commodores coach Bryce Drew pointed for him to pick up McIntosh, Fisher-Davis thought he was saying to foul him.

“It was a collective effort in coming back, and it was my dumb mistake why we lost,” Fisher-Davis said after the game.

This is just such a brutal was for a team to lose a game, and I cannot imagine being in Fisher-Davis’ shoes right now. This was the only tournament game being played at the time — the late tips didn’t start for another 10 minutes and the only other afternoon tip had ended 10 minutes before the foul — meaning that everyone saw this happen. He’s not going to live that down, and the cruel irony is that if it wasn’t for his 22-point performance, Vandy would never have been in a position for him to make this mistake.

Northwestern’s win is March at its absolute best.

But what Fisher-Davis is going to go through is the other side of it, a heartbreaking loss and a career-defining mistake that will never leave him.

McIntosh finished with 25 points for Northwestern, making big shot after big shot down the stretch. The Wildcats were up by 15 points midway through the second half, but Vanderbilt made a run.

Northwestern advances to take on No. 1 seed Gonzaga on Saturday in the second round.

Affidavit: Josh Jackson threatened to ‘beat’ women’s player

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LAWRENCE, Kan. — One day before top-seeded Kansas opens NCAA Tournament play, court officials release an affidavit that says freshman star Josh Jackson threatened to “beat” a women’s basketball player during a confrontation in December.

Douglas County District Court officials released the affidavit to The Lawrence Journal-World detailing statements from McKenzie Calvert and two other Kansas women’s basketball players who witnessed the argument Dec. 9 outside The Yacht Club in Lawrence. The affidavit was filed by police to justify a court summons Jackson was served March 7; he is charged with misdemeanor criminal damage.

Coach Bill Self suspended Jackson for the quarterfinal game in the Big 12 Tournament that Kansas lost to TCU as punishment for an accumulation of embarrassing incidents. Self has been adamant that Jackson will play Friday when the top-seeded Jayhawks face UC Davis in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

The incident began inside the bar when Calvert threw a drink at her ex-boyfriend, Lagerald Vick, another Kansas player. She said she was upset because Vick attended the party with his new girlfriend.

Calver told police Jackson followed her to her car and “was yelling for her to get out of the car and that he would beat her ass,” the affidavit says. Jackson is scheduled to appear in court April 12. His attorney did not return a call Thursday from The Associated Press.

The affidavit said the bumper, grille, fender, windshield, left tail lamp assembly and driver’s side front door were all damaged, with a total repair cost of about $3,150. Witnesses reported Jackson only damaging the door and tail light, with an estimated damage of $1,127, and District Attorney Charles Branson said Jackson was not charged with felony criminal damage because it couldn’t be proved that the player caused all the damage.

Josh Jackson has been charged with criminal damage to property. Jackson apologized in a statement shortly after he was arrested and “offered to pay for any damage that I directly caused.”

Women’s basketball player Caelynn Manning-Allen told police she tried to restrain Jackson by grabbing his arms and he kicked Calvert’s car before she was able to get him away from the vehicle. Another women’s player, Eboni Watts, said she witnessed Jackson kick Calvert’s driver’s door twice and kick the tail light.

According to the affidavit, Self joined Jackson at McCarthy Hall, where the men’s basketball team lives, as he was interviewed by police about 5:45 a.m. the day of the confrontation.

The Jayhawks have been dogged by a number of off-the-court problems this season. The most serious is an alleged sexual assault at McCarthy Hall. No suspects have been identified in connection with the incident the night of Dec. 17, though five players are listed as witnesses.

Forward Carlton Bragg also was charged with possession in a drug case and was briefly suspended before being granted diversion. Vick was also accused of hitting a female student two years ago, but the school investigated and recommended school probation.

And hours after the Jayhawks wrapped up the Big 12 regular-season title, junior guard Devonte Graham was arrested for failing to appear in court. Graham had been ticketed for driving with expired license plates, and said that the car belonged to an ex-teammate and he thought the ticket had been paid.

Information from: Lawrence (Kan.) Journal-World,

No. 4 Florida stifles No. 13 East Tennessee State in second half

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Devin Robinson scored 24 points and Kasey Hill chipped in with 14 points, five boards, five assists and a pair of steals as No. 4 seed Florida used a big second half run to pull away from a scrappy East Tennessee State team, 80-65.

Robinson was terrific in the second half, but Hill was probably Florida’s best player. In addition to stuffing the stat sheet, he was also the guy tasked with face-guarding ETSU star T.J. Cromer during Florida’s game-changing run. The Buccaneers took a 35-33 lead in the first minute of the second half, but Florida responded by going on a 26-8 run over the next ten minutes, a stretch where ETSU looked incapable of running offense.

Hill was a major reason for that, as he took Cromer out of the game during that stretch.

To his credit, Cromer finished with 19 points on 7-for-13 shooting, but the ETSU just couldn’t survive the surge from the Gators.

Perhaps the most impressive part of this win is that Florida was able to get it done despite the fact that KeVaughn Allen, the program’s leading scorer, finished with just seven points on 1-for-11 shooting on the day. The one field goal that he did hit, however, came early in the 26-8 run, a three that pushed Florida’s lead to eight points for the first time in the second half.

With the win, Florida advances to take on No. 5 Virginia, who knocked off No. 12 UNC Wilmington earlier in the day.