College Hoops Week in Review: And we’re off!

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Games of the Week: George Mason 92, Rhode Island 90 OT

It was a wild one in at the Patroit Center on Friday night. With both Jamil Wilson of Rhode Island (38 points) and Ryan Pearson from George Mason (28 points, 12 boards) were in a groove offensively, the two teams saw the lead change hands 22 times — with 17 ties thrown in for good measure — in an exciting, back-and-forth game. Mason erased a 10 point first half deficit to tie the game at the half. After opening up a five point lead early in the second half, GMU saw Rhode Island go on a 12-2 run to go ahead by five. The Patriot responded with a 9-1 spurt of their own.

George Mason eventually took an 80-77 lead with 39 seconds left when sophomore Sherrod Wright cleaned up a miss by Vertrail Vaughns. But at the other end, Jonathon Holton — who was 0-5 from long range at that point in the game — buried a three to force the extra period. In overtime, GMU scored six of the first seven points, taking an 86-81 lead, but Wilson responded with a 7-1 run of his own. Pearson game GMU the lead back and after trading baskets, he hit a free throw with 11 seconds left to take a 92-90 lead. URI used their hot hand Wilson as a decoy, but Orion Outerbridge missed a would-be buzzer-beating three.
Evansville 80, Butler 77 OT: Butler somehow always seems to be involved in games with weird endings. Everyone will remember the strange finish to Butler’s upset of Pitt in last year’s NCAA Tournament, but do you remember when Butler beat Xavier when the clock stopped for 1.2 seconds? Believe it or not, Butler may have topped that with the way they lost to Evansville on Saturday evening. After blowing a 12 point second half lead, Butler fouled Colt Ryan with 0.9 seconds left and a one point lead. But Ryan missed the first before making the second shot, tying the game.

On the ensuing inbounds, Butler threw the ball the length of the court to Andrew Smith who made the catch and laid the ball in at the buzzer. The only problem? The refs said the lay-in came after the buzzer, but that he was fouled with 0.2 seconds left on the clock. Smith would proceed to miss both free throws and Evansville won the game in overtime when Chrishawn Hopkins failed to get a shot off to try and tie the game. For a more in-depth look at the controversy involved in the finish, we wrote about it here.

Player of the Week: Nurideen Lindsay, St. John’s

St. John’s may not have played a murder’s row schedule in the first week of the season, but the youthful Johnnies were tested. They dug themselves a big hole against William & Mary and a bigger hole against Lehigh before coming back and winning both of those games. Lindsay played a huge role in both of those comebacks, getting 15 of his 19 points in the second half against W&M and finishing with 15 points against Lehigh. Lindsay’s best game of the week came against UMBC. He finished one assist shy of a triple-double with 15 points, 10 boards and nine assists.

For the week, Lindsay finished with averages of 16.3 ppg, 4.7 apg and 4.7 rpg. He also added 3.3 spg while shooting a crisp 50% from the field. Lindsay is a slippery penetrator. He’s got a crafty handle and while he doesn’t have blazing speed, he’s quick and understands how to change speeds. He’s a good finisher when he gets into the paint and, at least against some mid-major competition, was able to avoid getting his shot blocked while drawing fouls. He still has plenty of room to improve — Lindsay turned the ball over 10 times in the three games while shooting 0-7 from three and just 15-27 (55.6%) from the line — but what makes him so important to the Steve Lavin’s team is he is one of the only guys that is capable of getting his own shot.
The All-They-Were-Good-Too Team

G: Tray Woodall, Pitt: The talk of the Panthers coming into the season was their front line and Ashton Gibbs, but Woodall was the star of the first two games. He averaged 21.0 ppg, 10.0 apg and 6.5 rpg while committing just six turnovers and hitting 9-17 from beyond the arc.

G: Allen Crabbe, Cal: Most outlets had Allen Crabbe pegged as an up-and-coming star, and he did nothing to dispute that notion through two games. Crabbe averaged 22.5 ppg in two blowout wins, hitting 9-17 from beyond the arc.

F: Dominic Cheek, Villanova: Cheek is an important piece for the Wildcats if he can become a consistent scorer on the wing. We know about his defensive acumen (he had three steals), but his 27 points and 5-8 shooting from beyond the arc was a pleasant surprise for Nova fans.

F: Ryan Pearson, George Mason: The Patriots big man went for 28 points and 12 boards in an overtime win over Rhode Island on Friday night.

C: John Henson, North Carolina: In a 2-0 week for the Heels, Henson finished with averages of 16.0 ppg, 9.5 rpg and 5.5 bpg while shooting 66.7% from the floor. He even showed off a turnaround jumper in the win over UNC-Asheville.

Bench: Nathaniel Lester, Hofstra (33 points in a win over Long Island; Jamil Wilson, Rhode Island (38 points in a loss to George Mason); Trae Golden, Tennessee (29 points, 9 assists in a win over UNC Greensboro); Robbie Hummel, Purdue (21 points in his return to the court); Eric Atkins, Notre Dame (27 points, 6 assists, 6-7 FGs, 12-12 FTs in a win over MVSU); Dorian Finney-Smith, Virginia Tech (10 points, 16 boards, 5 assists, 5 blocks in Tech debut); CJ Wilcox, Washington (20.5 ppg in a 2-0 start); Arnett Moultrie, Mississippi State (16.3 ppg, 12.7 rpg in three games this week); J’Covan Brown, Texas (28 points, 8 assists, 1 turnover in a win over Boston U.); Kendall Marshall, North Carolina (15 assists, 1 turnover against UNC-Asheville)

Team of the Week: Cleveland State

The Vikings were a bit of an afterthought heading into this season. That’s generally what happens when you are a mid-major program and you lose a player as talented and important to your team as Norris Cole. But Gary Waters’ team did a fine job introducing themselves to the country on Sunday afternoon, as they went into Memorial Coliseum and bullied Vanderbilt into a 71-58 victory. D’Aundray Brown led the way for the Vikings, finishing with 18 points and 8 boards, but he got plenty of help, as five of his teammates scored between seven and 11 points.

But the offensive end of the floor isn’t what won this game for Cleveland State. It was their defensive pressure. Vanderbilt, a top 10 team known for having a powerful offensive attack, had more possessions end in a turnover (20) than in a made field goal (18). John Jenkins, the Commodores all-american, was hounded the entire game, shooting 5-14 from the floor (2-8 from three). Jeff Taylor had just nine points, shooting 3-8 from the field and turning the ball over six times. All in all, it was an impressive performance from the Vikings, one that will likely get them into the conversation — along with Butler and Detroit — for the favorite in the Horizon.
Teams deserving a shoutout:

Akron: Akron made a statement on Wednesday night, as they went into Starkville and handled Mississippi State fairly easily. Quincy Diggs led the way with 19 points, but it was an all-around team effort that got the job done. Much like Cleveland State’s win over Vanderbilt, it was work on the defensive end that got the job done.

Cal: The Bears looked quite impressive in their two games this week. After running through UC-Irvine with a dominating first-half performance, Cal used a 21-0 run to close out the first half against George Washington on Sunday night. Jorge Gutierrez and Allen Crabbe have been as good as advertised, but it was the play of Justin Cobbs (16 points, five assists on Sunday) and Brandon Smith (seven points, six assists on Friday) that was promising.

St. John’s: The Johnnies went 3-0 this week, and while all three games were against overmatched opponents, there is reason to be excited about this team. They are young and, obviously, will go through some growing pains, but the fact that they were able to come back from halftime deficits twice was promising. God’sgift Achiuwa and Moe Harkless have been promising up front and when the Johnnies press is clicking, they are a dangerous team.

Five Thoughts:

The SEC stinks again?: Vanderbilt was supposed to be a Final Four contender this year, but they were manhandled by Cleveland State at home on Sunday. Mississippi State was a team that everyone thought could finally turn the corner this year, but with Renardo Sidney still out of shape — and now injured, apparently — that looks like wishful thinking. The loss to Akron on Wednesday confirms that. Now to be fair, those are the only two league teams that lost this week and Cleveland State and Akron are both legitimate contenders to make a run at an NCAA Tournament bid this year. But to get an idea of the significance of two of the league’s top five teams having a mark in the loss column right now, only three other high-major teams do as well — Michigan State (who lost to North Carolina), Oregon (who lost to Vanderbilt) and UCLA (who lost to Loyola Marymount).

Good start for the MVC: Missouri State is in full-on rebuilding mode this year. That’s what happens when you lose six of your seven rotation players and overhaul the coaching staff. But that doesn’t mean the Bears won’t be competitive in the Missouri Valley this year. On the one hand, they bring back Kyle Weems, the reigning MVC player of the year. On the other hand, they opened the season with a 22 point win at Nevada. Making the win even more impressive? Weems had four points on 2-12 shooting. Northern Iowa was impressive as well. Old Dominion is in a bit of a rebuilding year as well, but the Panthers went into Richmond and beat the Monarchs by 17 despite the semi-surprising return of Kent Bazemore. Now if we could only forget about the loss Southern Illinois suffered against (wait for it) Ohio Dominican. Yeah, they’re D-II.

UConn’s strength is their back court?: That’s at least the way that it looks after UConn’s first game against Columbia. Jeremy Lamb lived up to the all-american hype, putting up 30 points on 11-17 shooting, while Shabazz Napier was just as good, finishing with 21 points, eight assists and six boards. The two combined for six steals. Alex Oriakhi and Andre Drummond, on the other hand, combined for just two points and nine rebounds. Drummond attempted a single shot in 12 minutes. As good as Napier and Lamb looked, they played a 36 and 38 minutes, respectively, against Columbia. The Huskies are going to need more balance — and depth — this season.

Duke and Belmont: Duke has some major issues they need to address this season. Austin Rivers is ridiculously talented but will make plenty of freshman mistakes this year. Seth Curry is a knockdown shooter, as if Andre Dawkins, but the best point guard — and perimeter defender — on the roster is Tyler Thornton. How does Coach K get him into the lineup? Duke’s big men have put up some solid numbers early, but are we ready to assume that the Plumlees are more than just the Plumlees and Ryan Kelly is better than a sixth or seventh man? But more than anything, what you should have taken out of Belmont’s one-point loss to Duke at Cameron Indoor is that the Bruins are going to be a team to reckon with in March. In other words, Belmont is legit. Memphis, you have been warned.

Who is the best team in the Pac-12?: It certainly doesn’t look like UCLA at this point. The Bruins looked awful in a loss to Loyola Marymount, as Josh Smith is clearly not in shape and their guards look better suited to playing at Cal. State Northridge. Arizona is dealing with their fair share of issues as well. They struggled against Valparaiso and Duquense before having to come back from a double digit deficit against Ball State. The Wildcats lack an interior presence and are trying to identify their go-to scorer and starting point guard; Josiah Turner lost his starting job after missing a shootaround and didn’t play on Sunday against Ball State. Oregon’s loss at Vanderbilt looks worse after Vandy lost to Cleveland State, and Washington has struggled against two inferior opponents. That leaves Cal. So are the Bears really the favorite in the Pac-12?

Matchups of the Week (all times eastern):

– 11/14 7:00 pm: UCF @ Florida State
– 11/14 8:00 pm: Oakland @ Alabama
– 11/14 9:00 pm: Detroit @ Notre Dame
– 11/14 10:00 pm: Nevada @ UNLV
– 11/15 12:00 am: Washington State @ Gonzaga
– 11/15 12:00 pm: Belmont @ Memphis
– 11/15 2:00 pm: SDSU @ Baylor
– 11/15 7:00 pm: Champions Classic — Duke vs. Michigan State and Kansas vs. Kentucky
– 11/15 8:00 pm: Florida @ Ohio State
– 11/15 8:00 pm: Bucknell @ Vanderbilt
– 11/16 9:00 pm: Long Beach State @ Pitt
– 11/17 1:00 pm: Purdue vs. Iona
– 11/17 7:00 pm: Texas A&M vs. Mississippi State
– 11/19 2:00 pm: Louisville @ Butler
– 11/19 6:30 pm: Vanderbilt vs. NC State

Rob Dauster is the editor of the college basketball website Ballin’ is a Habit. You can find him on twitter @ballinisahabit.

Gardner, No. 3 Virginia rally for 70-68 win at Michigan

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
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ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Tony Bennett’s team passed all its tests in the opening month of the season.

Jayden Gardner made a go-ahead jumper with 39.9 seconds left and blocked Jett Howard’s 3-point shot just before the buzzer, allowing No. 3 Virginia to stay undefeated with a 70-68 win over Michigan in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge on Tuesday night.

The Cavaliers (6-0) won their first true road game against a team that was ranked in the first two polls this season, a little more than a week after beating then-No. 5 Baylor and then-No. 19 Illinois in Las Vegas.

“It got pretty intense in here,” Bennett said.

Virginia trailed by 11 points at halftime, rallied to go ahead with 7:25 left and built a five-point lead that didn’t last.

The Wolverines (5-2) went ahead 66-65 at the 1:42 mark when Hunter Dickinson made one of two free throws.

Michigan missed chances to stay or go ahead when Dickinson missed a hook shot with 1:01 to go and Princeton transfer Jaelin Llewellyn turned the ball over with 16 seconds left.

“Hunter has made that running hook before,” coach Juwan Howard said. “The turnover, yes, down the stretch, it hurt, but overall that’s not the reason we lost the ballgame.

“We could’ve easily put our heads down when they came out in the second half and made a run.”

Reece Beekman, who finished with 18 points, stepped in front of Llewellyn’s pass in the final minute and made one of two free throws.

Virginia’s Armaan Franklin missed two free throws with 5.7 seconds left, giving Michigan a chance to extend or win the game. Howard took a contested shot beyond the 3-point arc on the right wing – near his father, Michigan’s coach – and Gardner came up with the block against the freshman guard while Wolverines coaches and players screamed for a foul call.

It appeared that Gardner got all ball on the block.

Kihei Clark scored 16 points, Gardner had 12, Kadin Shedrick fouled out with 12 points and Ben Vander Plas added 10 for the balanced Cavaliers.

“You need different guys, and that’s what it takes, to make plays offensively and defensively,” Bennett said.

Dickinson scored 23 points, Jett Howard had 11 of his 15 in the first half and Kobe Bufkin added 11 points for Michigan.

“Jett is a gamer, he’s going to compete no matter what,” Juwan Howard said. “He’s loved basketball since he was a little baby boy.

“He’s going to help us win a lot of games this year.”

The Wolverines started slowly, trailing 9-2 in the opening minutes, before Howard scored eight points to lead a 13-2 run. Michigan led 45-34 at halftime when Bufkin made a layup after a steal.

“We can’t be sloppy like that on the defensive end, but we did battle hard in the second half,” Bennett said.

Vander Plas scored nine points during an 11-2 run that put Virginia ahead 65-60. The Cavaliers then went 4 1/2 minutes without a basket before Gardner’s big shot.

THE TAKEAWAY

Virginia: The Cavaliers have their highest ranking since the 2018-19 season – which ended with a national title – and are off to their best start since being 7-0 three years ago. The team continues to honor the memory of three football players who were fatally shot on campus earlier this month, wearing warmup jerseys with their names.

Michigan: Juwan Howard’s team matched up well in its first game against a ranked opponent this season.

“When we come out with the effort like we did today for 40 minutes, I love our chances against any college team in the country,” he said.

UP NEXT

Virginia: Hosts Florida State (1-7) on Saturday.

Michigan: Plays No. 19 Kentucky (5-2) on Sunday in London.

Marquette’s defense overwhelms No. 6 Baylor in 96-70 win

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
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MILWAUKEE – Marquette has developed a habit under Shaka Smart of saving its top performances for the best opponents on its schedule.

Olivier-Maxence Prosper scored 24 points and Marquette capitalized on a dominant start from its defense to roll past No. 6 Baylor 96-70 on Tuesday night in the Big 12-Big East Battle. This was the highest-ranked team Marquette (6-2) has beaten under Smart and the Golden Eagles improved to to 7-6 against AP Top 25 squads in his tenure.

“Most of the time against these great teams, they don’t have us winning that game,” said David Joplin, who scored 19 points. “We just come out, we want to go out and prove everybody wrong. And that feeling, that chip makes us play so much better.”

Marquette nearly produced its most lopsided victory against a Top 25 team. The Golden Eagles trounced No. 16 Providence 88-56 on Jan. 4 in Smart’s debut season.

“When you go into a game and the game is bigger in the minds of your players than anything else, to me that’s the best recipe for winning,” Smart said. “It should be that way all the time, but human nature sometimes messes with that.”

Marquette’s defense embarrassed a highly regarded Baylor backcourt.

The Golden Eagles raced to a 51-25 halftime lead thanks to a 24-0 edge in points off turnovers. Baylor (5-2) already had a season-high 16 turnovers by halftime.

Baylor entered Tuesday ranked third among Division I teams in assist-turnover margin. The Bears had 20 turnovers and 12 assists against Marquette.

“I didn’t see that coming,” Baylor coach Scott Drew said. “Credit the crowd. Credit them for building momentum. Credit Shaka for having them prepared and how hard they played. At the end of the day, we fed to the fire by turning it over and making some uncharacteristic mistakes.”

Prosper scored 10 points and sank two 3-pointers during a 23-2 run that turned an early 7-2 deficit into a 25-9 advantage. Chase Ross capped the spurt by getting a steal and throwing down a left-handed dunk.

Baylor never cut Marquette’s lead below 22 points in the second half.

Kam Jones had 20 points as Marquette shot 58.3% overall to win its third straight. The Golden Eagles shot 12 of 25 from 3-point range, with Jones going 4 of 7 and Prosper and Joplin each going 3 of 4.

Baylor’s LJ Cryer had 17 of his 19 points, in the second half. Adam Flagler had 16 and Keyonte George added 12 for the Bears.

BIG PICTURE

Baylor: The Bears shot 48.2% (27 of 56) but had no answers for Marquette’s defense and dug too deep a hole. Baylor rallied from a 25-deficit to force overtime in an NCAA Tournament loss to North Carolina last season, but the Bears never mounted any kind of comeback Tuesday.

Marquette: After losing to Purdue and Mississippi State earlier this season, the Golden Eagles delivered the kind of performance that showed they’re capable of beating anyone. Marquette will try to prove that again when it hosts Wisconsin on Saturday.

BIG 12 VS. BIG EAST

The Big 12-Big East Battle started Tuesday and runs through Sunday. Last season’s Big 12-Big East Battle ended in a 5-5 tie.

HONORING THOMPSON

Marquette came out of its locker room wearing shirts with No. 24 to honor George Thompson, who died in June of complications from diabetes. Thompson played for Marquette from 1967-69, and he was the school’s career scoring leader for 40 years.

Tuesday would have been Thompson’s 75th birthday. A No. 24 banner with Thompson’s name hangs from the Fiserv Forum rafters.

“I really felt like we needed to win tonight to honor George,” Smart said. “If you make it George Thompson Night, you couldn’t lose.”

UP NEXT

Baylor: Faces No. 14 Gonzaga on Friday in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

Marquette: Hosts Wisconsin on Saturday.

Houston reaches No. 1 in AP poll for first time since 1983

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Make some room, Phi Slama Jama. Another Houston team has reached the top of men’s college basketball.

Nearly four decades after Clyde Drexler and Akeem Olajuwon took the Cougars to No. 1, the latest bunch led by Marcus Sasser and star freshman Jarace Walker took over the top spot in the AP Top 25. They received 45 of 63 first-place votes from the national media panel, easily outdistancing second-place Texas and third-place Virginia.

“It’s not like we went online and applied for it and waited for a response back. We’ve been working for this,” said Houston coach Kelvin Sampson, whose team is coming off a Final Four and Elite Eight trip the past two seasons. “But remember, it’s a rental. You don’t own it. You’re just renting it because someday somebody else is going to be No. 1.”

North Carolina had been No. 1 all season, but the Tar Heels lost to Iowa State and in a four-overtime thriller to Alabama at the Phil Knight Invitational to cede the top spot to Houston, which beat Kent State in its only game last week.

The last time the Cougars ascended to No. 1 was the final poll of the 1982-83 season, when “The Glide” and “The Dream” along with coach Guy Lewis were the favorites to win it all. They rolled through the NCAA Tournament before falling to Jim Valvano and North Carolina State in an iconic championship game in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

“I’ve never been ranked No. 1,” said Sampson, now in his 34th season as a college basketball coach. “We were ranked all 12 years at Oklahoma. I’m sure we were ranked at Indiana. Then we’ve been ranked five or six straight years. We’re used to having a high level of success.”

Texas received eight first-place votes and Virginia received two. Arizona climbed from 14th to fourth after emerging from a stacked field to win the Maui Invitational. Purdue jumped from 24th all the way to fifth and scooped up eight first-place votes after beating West Virginia, Gonzaga and Duke at the Phil Knight Legacy tourney.

“Our guys are competitive. They’re fun to coach. They get along. They’re out there playing with purpose and that’s what you have to have,” said Boilermakers coach Matt Painter, whose team was briefly No. 1 about this time last season.

“Early in the season, very few teams play with the purpose collectively,” he said. “I thought our guys played with a purpose.”

Baylor was sixth, Creighton seventh and U Conn climbed from 20th to eighth after beating Oregon, Alabama and Iowa State to win the Phil Knight Invitational. Kansas fell from third to ninth after losing to Tennessee in the championship game of the Battle 4 Atlantis, while Indiana rounded out the top 10.

There was a tie for 11th between SEC rivals Alabama and Arkansas with the Volunteers, another conference foe, right behind them. Gonzaga dropped from sixth to 14th, its first time outside the top 10 since Feb. 5, 2018, and Auburn was 15th.

Illinois was next followed by Duke and North Carolina in a tough week for Tobacco Road. The Blue Devils fell from eighth after their 75-56 loss to the Boilermakers.

Kentucky and Michigan State joined UCLA, Maryland, Iowa State, San Diego State and Ohio State in rounding out the poll.

RISING AND FALLING

Purdue made a rare 19-spot jump as the poll underwent a massive shakeup. UConn climbed 12 spots, Arizona moved up 10, Tennessee climbed nine and Alabama seven. On the flip side, the Tar Heels tumbled 17 spots, Duke dropped nine, Gonzaga fell eight and San Diego State fell seven.

IN AND OUT

Despite all the movement, Iowa State was the only newcomer this week, checking in at No. 23 after beating Villanova and North Carolina before falling to UConn. The Cyclones replaced Iowa, which dropped out after a one-week stay following its loss to TCU in the title game of the Emerald Coast Classic.

CONFERENCE WATCH

There are six difference conferences represented in the first seven teams in the poll. The Big Ten leads the way with six in the Top 25 while the SEC has five and the Big 12 has four, though three of them are in the top 10.

South Carolina tops women’s AP Top 25; Stanford, UConn next

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South Carolina remained the unanimous No. 1 choice in The Associated Press women’s poll, as the Gamecocks keep close watch on the foot injury of reigning Player of the Year Aliyah Boston.

The Gamecocks received all 29 first-place votes in the poll, a day after Boston left a game with her injury. Coach Dawn Staley said Boston was “questionable” going forward but added that the “team doctor wasn’t too, too concerned.”

South Carolina’s next game is at home against No. 15 UCLA.

Stanford remained No. 2 after cruising through a tournament in Hawaii. It’s the 618th appearance for Cardinal coach Tara VanDerveer, tying the late Pat Summitt for most all-time. Summitt’s teams only missed being in the poll 14 times during her Hall of Fame career at Tennessee.

UConn, Ohio State and Indiana rounded out the top five.

The Huskies are one of four Big East teams to be ranked this week as Marquette entered the poll at No. 24. It’s the first time the Big East has four ranked teams since the conference realigned in 2014. The league is 56-14 so far this season, including going 8-2 against ranked teams.

“We’ve been trying to earn a little more respect,” Marquette coach Megan Duffy said of the Big East. “Tried to schedule tougher non-conference (games). ‘Nova’s playing people. Us going to the Bahamas was great. Creighton’s doing what they’ve been doing since last season. Getting some of those quality wins is everything.”

North Carolina moved up two spots to No. 6 after rallying to beat then-No. 5 Iowa State in the Phil Knight tournament. The Cyclones fell to eighth.

The Tar Heels visit the Hoosiers on Tuesday in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge. Indiana returns home after winning two games in Las Vegas at a subpar venue that lacked basic necessities.

Notre Dame remained No. 7 while Virginia Tech and Iowa finished off the top 10. At No. 9, Virginia Tech has matched its best ranking ever and is in the top 10 for the first time since 1999.

Tennessee fell out of the poll this week marking the 56th time in the 827-week history of the poll that the Lady Vols weren’t ranked. Kansas State also fell out with Gonzaga moving in at No. 23.

FALLING CARDINALS

Louisville dropped to 18th in the poll this week after falling to South Dakota State in the fifth place game at the Battle 4 Atlantis last week. It’s the Cardinals lowest ranking since Jan. 11, 2016.

Louisville entered the top 10 in the preseason poll in 2017 and hadn’t been out since, a span of 98 consecutive weeks. It was the longest active streak.

“It’s a compliment to the consistency that we built here,” Louisville coach Jeff Walz said of being ranked in the top 10 for so long. “Obviously are goal would have been to stay in the top 10, but it’s a new team and growing.”

Edey scores 21 as No. 24 Purdue beats No. 8 Duke 75-56

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PORTLAND, Ore. – Zach Edey and No. 24 Purdue shook off a slow start. When No. 8 Duke tried to rally in the second half, the Boilermakers finished strong.

Edey had 21 points and 12 rebounds, and Purdue beat Duke 75-56 on Sunday in the championship game of the Phil Knight Legacy men’s tournament.

Fletcher Loyer scored 18 points for Purdue (6-0), and reserve Caleb Furst finished with 11 points and 10 rebounds.

“I feel like we weren’t getting the looks we wanted early. As we settled into the game, we kept our poise and kept getting the shots that we wanted,” Edey said. “They were making some tough twos at the beginning of the game, shots we’re OK with all season.”

The 7-foot-4 Edey was 7 for 13 from the field and 7 for 8 at the line. He was named tournament MVP.

“They have the most unique player in the country,” Duke coach Jon Scheyer said of Edey. “He’s a hard guy to prepare for because there’s nobody else like him.”

Duke (6-2) shot 36.2% (21 for 58) from the field. Tyres Proctor scored 16 points for the Blue Devils. Kyle Filipowski and Jeremy Roach each had 14.

Ethan Morton had a steal and a dunk to help Purdue open a 58-41 lead with 15:37 left in the second half.

Duke countered with an 8-0 run, capped by two foul shots by Dariq Whitehead. But Furst made a layup and a jumper to help hold off the Blue Devils.

A hook by Edey and a 3-pointer by Loyer made it 68-56 with 5:03 remaining.

Duke got off to a 14-7 start before Purdue worked its way back into the game.

“I don’t feel like we came out bad today, but they matched our energy,” Edey said.

A 3-pointer by Brandon Newman pushed the Purdue lead to 46-28. A late run by Duke cut the Boilermakers’ lead to 46-35 at halftime.

BIG PICTURE

Duke: It looked as if Roach had an issue with his left foot at one point, but he went back into the game. Scheyer said Roach had hurt his toe.

Purdue: Although neither team had great offensive games, Purdue was the better team from range. Purdue made seven 3-pointers to just two for Duke.

UP NEXT

Duke: Hosts Ohio State on Wednesday.

Purdue: Visits Florida State on Wednesday.