GAME OF THE NIGHT: No. 6 Arizona 69, San Diego State 60
Aaron Gordon finished with 16 points, eight boards, three blocks and two steals and had a couple of highlight reel plays in the process. He shot threes with the confidence of Jerry West, and there was one move in the second half crossed up a defender, came off of a ball-screen and made a ridiculous no-look pass to Kaleb Tarczewski for a dunk.
Gordon can really, really play, and he should probably be in the same conversation as the other Big Three freshmen. But Arizona needs more from him. They need him to develop into a go-to scorer in crunchtime, because that’s currently the player they are missing from what appears to be a legitimate national title contender at the moment.
1) Boston College lost (again), this time getting upset at home by MAC favorite Toledo despite leading by double-figures in the second half. That’s not a good start to the year for the 0-3 Eagles.
2) Stanford looked much better than they did in a loss to BYU during the Tip-Off Marathon as they knocked off visiting Northwestern. The Cardinal shot 51.1% from the floor and 5-for-10 from three.
3) Michael Dixon made his return to the basketball court on Thursday, as No. 13 Memphis ran through Austin Peay. Dixon finished with 15 points, four boards and four assists.
1) Rion Brown had 13 points, 11 boards, nine assists and three steals as Miami (FL) picked up an 84-69 win over Texas Southern.
2) Niels Giffey had 15 points and shot 3-for-4 from three, which actually hurt his percentage. Giffey is now 11-for-13 on the year from beyond the arc.
3) 23 points, 12 boards, eight assists, 8-for-14 shooting and a win over South Dakota State. Not a bad night for Kareem Jamar of Montana.
1) Indiana State’s defense gave up 63 second half points to Belmont on Thursday, allowing the Bruins to erase a 16 point halftime deficit in a 96-95 win. Belmont was up 10 with a couple of minutes left, but they almost returned the favor to the Sycamores. J.J. Mann had 23 points to lead Belmont.
2) Yale had Rutgers on the ropes, up by six with just a couple of minutes left, but made some crucial mistakes down the stretch, including a devastating turnover in the final minute that allowed Rutgers to take the lead. The Scarlet Knights eventually won 72-71 when the Elis missed an open look from three feet away off of a baseline out of bounds. The Bulldogs, are aggressive rebounding team, got just a single board from Justin Sears.
3) Washington. They got worked by UC-Irvine. Absolutely worked.
- Jerrelle Benimon led Towson with 32 points and nine boards in a 75-69 win over Temple.
- St. Mary’s picked up their third straight solid win, beating North Dakota State.
- Aaron White led seven players in double figures with 22 points as Iowa beat UMES 109-63.
- Trevor Releford had 29 points to lead Alabama to a 76-64 win over Texas Tech.
- Fred VanVleet had 18 points and eight assists in a 79-62 win for No. 16 Wichita State over William & Mary.