NBCSports 2014-2015 College Basketball Season Preview Schedule


Beginning on October 3rd and running up until November 14th, the first day of the season, College Basketball Talk will be unveiling the 2014-2015 NBCSports.com college hoops preview package. We will be counting down the top 25 teams in the country, previewing each of the 32 conferences and ranking players at every position. We will also have 42 feature stories on players and teams that you will need to pay attention to.

Below is a schedule for all of our coverage for the next six weeks. Bookmark this page, as we will be posting links to each and every piece of preview content:


Oct. 23: Back Courts
Oct. 24: Front Courts
Oct. 27: Lead Guards
Oct. 28: Off Guards
Oct. 29: Wing Forwards
Oct. 30: Big Men


Oct. 15: Mid-Major Power Rankings
Oct. 16: Mid-Major All-Americans
Oct. 21: Best Dunkers
Oct. 31: NBCSports.com Dream Team
Nov. 3: NBCSports.com Preseason All-Americans
Nov. 10-14: Top 100 Players Countdown
Nov. 14: CBT Staff Final Four Picks
Nov. 14: NBCSports.com Preseason Bracketology


Oct. 6: Top non-conference games
Oct. 7: Coaches on the Hot Seat
Oct. 8: Programs on the rise and decline
Oct. 9: Breakout Stars
Oct. 10: Key Junior College additions

Oct. 13: X-Factors
Oct. 14: Impact transfers
Oct. 17: Key assistant coach hires
Oct. 20: New head coaches likely to succeed and fail
Oct. 22: Impact freshmen

Nov. 4: Under the radar stars
Nov. 4: Top 68 things to watch for
Nov. 5: College basketball draft
Nov. 6: Potential cinderellas
Nov. 7: Most important players


Oct. 3: Others Receiving Votes
Oct. 6: No. 25 Stanford Cardinal
Oct. 7: No. 24 UCLA Bruins
Oct. 8: No. 23 Harvard Crimson
Oct. 9: No. 22 Michigan State Spartans
Oct. 10: No. 21 Iowa Hawkeyes

Oct. 13: No. 20 UConn Huskies
Oct. 14: No. 19 Michigan Wolverines
Oct. 15: No. 18 San Diego State Aztecs
Oct. 16: No. 17 Iowa State Cyclones
Oct. 17: No. 16 SMU Mustangs

Oct. 20: No. 15 Oklahoma Sooners
Oct. 21: No. 14  Florida Gators
Oct. 22: No. 13 VCU Rams
Oct. 23: No. 12 Wichita State Shockers
Oct. 24: No. 11 Villanova Wildcats

Oct. 27: No. 10 Louisville Cardinals
Oct. 28: No. 9 Gonzaga Bulldogs
Oct. 29: No. 8 Texas Longhorns
Oct. 30: No. 7 North Carolina Tar Heels
Oct. 31: No. 6 Virginia Cavaliers

Nov. 3: No. 5 Kansas Jayhawks
Nov. 4: No. 4 Duke Blue Devils
Nov. 5: No. 3 Wisconsin Badgers
Nov. 6: No. 2 Arizona Wildcats
Nov. 7: No. 1 Kentucky Wildcats


Oct. 10: Ivy League – Preview; Tommy Amaker’s unprecedented success at Harvard
Oct. 11: SWAC – Preview
Oct. 12: MEAC – Preview; LeVelle Moton developing UNC-Central’s culture
Oct. 13: NEC – Preview; Can Robert Morris get back to the NCAA tournament?
Oct. 14: Southland – Preview; Jacob Parker, communication and how it helped Stephen F. Austin
Oct. 15: WAC – Preview; Martez Harrison fills a 30 year old void at UMKC

Oct. 16: Big South – Preview; How High Point’s John Brown went from JV QB to NBA prospect
Oct. 17: America East – Preview; Stony Brook works toward NCAAs after DII transition
Oct. 18: Atlantic Sun – Preview; #DunkCity looking to take flight once again
Oct. 19: Big West – Preview; Alan Williams, one of mid-major’s best kept secrets
Oct. 20: Big Sky – Preview; Weber State’s success is recruiting Texas paying off

Oct. 21: Patriot  – Preview;  Improved American team ready to defend Patriot League title in 2014-15
Oct. 22: Summit – Preview; Cody Larson’s growth, from legal troubles at Florida to a star at SDSU
Oct. 23: OVC – Preview; Cam Payne has done a good job filling Isaiah Canaan’s shoes
Oct. 24: MAAC – Preview; Manhattan’s returnees look to build on the achievements of last season’s senior class
Oct. 25: SoCon – Preview; How Wofford went from the NAIA to the SoCon’s powerhouse

Oct. 26: Sun Belt – Preview; Georgia State’s devastating Sun Belt tourney loss leads to a new mentality
Oct. 27: CAA – Preview; Damion Lee is finally healthy for Drexel
Oct. 28: Horizon – Preview; A chip is firmly implanted on Keifer Sykes’ shoulder
Oct. 29: MAC – PreviewToledo gets defensive in quest for first NCAA Tournament appearance in 35 years
Oct. 30: Atlantic 10 – PreviewDayton’s Elite 8 run, Archie Miller’s decision to stay help continue Atlantic 10’s success
Oct. 31: Conference USA – PreviewLouisiana Tech’s Michael White is happy where is at

Nov. 3: WCC – Preview; Deep, talented Gonzaga takes aim at lengthy NCAA tournament stay; Pepperdine’s Stacy Davis
Nov. 4: Missouri Valley – Preview; Fred Van Vleet wants to sustain Wichita State’s elite production
Nov. 5: Mountain West – Preview; San Diego State has major questions offensivelyColorado State is rebuilding through transfers, again
Nov. 6: American – Preview; Nic Moore tries to get SMU on the right track after months of misfortune
Nov. 7: Pac-12 – Preview; Stanford’s Chasson Randle continues to grow as a point guard, leader; Chemistry the biggest factor in Arizona’s quest for a national title

Nov. 10: Big East – Preview; Kris Dunn looks to put injuries behind him as he shoulders heavy load at Providence; The new-look Big East looks to improve in year two
Nov. 11: Big 12 – Preview; To turn Texas around, Rick Barnes first had to change the culture of his team; A heart-to-heart with Bob Huggins changed Juwan Staten’s outlook, career
Nov. 12: Big Ten – Preview; Patience and hard work helped transform Wisconsin’s Frank Kaminsky into “Frank the Tank”; From under-recruited to team leader, Caris LeVert has seen it all at Michigan
Nov. 13: ACC – Preview; The maturation of Jerian Grant: What one star learned during a season-long suspension; Angel Rodriguez is happy to continue his career where it started: Home
Nov. 14: SEC – Preview; Kasey Hill’s second family gave him a new lease on life

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

Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports
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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.


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.


Duke: Hosts Ohio State on Wednesday.

Purdue: Visits Florida State on Wednesday.

No. 18 Alabama beats No. 1 North Carolina 103-101 in 4 OTs

Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

PORTLAND, Ore. – Mark Sears had 24 points, five rebounds and five assists, and No. 18 Alabama sent top-ranked North Carolina to a second straight loss with a 103-101 victory in a quadruple-overtime thriller on Sunday in the third-place game of the Phil Knight Invitational tournament.

Jahvon Quinerly added 21 points off the bench for the Crimson Tide (6-1), who knocked off the top-ranked team for the first time since upsetting Stanford in the 2004 NCAA Tournament.

“I was losing track of how many overtimes we were in there at the end,” Crimson Tide coach Nate Oats said. “A lot of credit to our guys. I thought they showed a lot of character when we could have folded.”

Charles Bediako had 14 points, 16 rebounds and three blocks, while Brandon Miller also scored 14 points.

Caleb Love led the Tar Heels (5-2) with 34 points, nine rebounds, four assists and three steals. Armando Bacot contributed 20 points and 10 rebounds, and R.J. Davis had 19 points and nine rebounds in the second four-overtime game in North Carolina history. The other was a victory over Tulane in 1976.

“At the end of the day, Alabama made one more play than we did,” North Carolina coach Hubert Davis said. “I walked in the locker room and a number of the guys had their head down and I told them to pick their head up. I’m just as disappointed (as the players) in terms of the final outcome, but I couldn’t be any more proud about the way they competed.”

Bediako gave the Crimson Tide the lead for good on a layup with 26 seconds remaining in the fourth overtime.

The Tar Heels, who lost to Iowa State in the semifinals, led by as much as eight in the second half before Alabama came back to tie it. The Crimson Tide retook the lead on a pair of free throws from Gurley with 2 minutes remaining, and later tied with another free throw from Sears with 51 seconds remaining in regulation.

Alabama starting forward Noah Clowney took a hard fall on a dunk attempt four minutes into the first half and had to be helped off the court. He did not return.

The Crimson Tide were 16 for 38 (42.1%) from 3-point range, with Sears making seven.


North Carolina: The Tar Heels figure to take a deep drop in the Top 25 poll.

Alabama: The Crimson Tide bounced back nicely following their loss to No. 20 UConn in the semifinals, beating a top-ranked team in the regular season for the first time since a 66-64 victory over eventual national champion Arkansas on Jan. 8, 1994.


North Carolina: The Tar Heels travel to Bloomington to face No. 11 Indiana on Wednesday.

Alabama: The Crimson Tide return home to face South Dakota State on Saturday.

Clingan lifts UConn past Iowa State for Phil Knight title

Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

PORTLAND, Ore. – Donovan Clingan had 15 points and 10 rebounds to power No. 20 UConn to a 71-53 win over Iowa State in the championship game of the Phil Knight Invitational on Sunday night.

Tristen Newton scored 13 points for the Huskies (8-0), who went 20 for 25 at the free-throw line. Alex Karaban and Andre Jackson, Jr. each had 10 points.

Osun Osunniyi led Iowa State (5-1) with 14 points. Tamin Lipsey had 12 points and Jaren Holmes finished with 11.

“They were the more aggressive team,” Iowa State coach T.J. Otzelberger said. “We wanted a physical game. We didn’t want a physical game with them getting the rebounds and then also us putting them on the foul line. Lesson that we’ve got to learn is we need to embrace being the aggressor at both ends of the floor at all times.”

The Huskies had more offensive rebounds (20) than the Cyclones had total rebounds (19), and capitalized on that disparity with 20 second-chance points.

“Those guys are tough,” UConn coach Dan Hurley said. “T.J.`s an excellent coach. They grind people up. To outrebound them, it just speaks to how tough we were.”

Clingan, who was named tournament MVP, scored eight points to help UConn to a 38-28 lead at the break.

Iowa State closed to 53-48 on Holmes’ 3-pointer midway through the second half. But Karaban made a 3 and a dunk, and Newton’s jumper made it 60-48 with 7:13 remaining.


UConn: The Huskies couldn’t have asked for a better showing in Portland, winning all three of their games.

Iowa State: The Cyclones picked up nice wins over Villanova and top-ranked North Carolina in the earlier rounds but ended with their first loss of the season.


UConn: The Huskies return home to face Oklahoma State on Thursday.

Iowa State: The Cyclones return home to face North Dakota on Tuesday.

No. 3 UConn rallies past No. 9 Iowa to win Phil Knight

Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

PORTLAND, Ore. – Azzi Fudd scored 24 points to rally No. 3 UConn past No. 9 Iowa 86-79 Sunday in the championship game of the first Phil Knight Legacy women’s tournament.

“It really was difficult to play against these guys,” UConn coach Geno Auriemma said. “I don’t think we felt really good about ourselves at halftime. I thought we came out in the third quarter and really took control of the game.”

Fudd had plenty of help, with Aaliyah Edwards (20 points, 13 rebounds) and three other Huskies (5-0) scoring in double-figures. Edwards was named MVP of the tournament.

Iowa (5-2) star Caitlin Clark had 25 points, and Kate Martin added 20.

Edwards got UConn off to a strong start, scoring 10 points while the Huskies built a 20-14 edge.

Clark and the Hawkeyes then surged with a 13-2 run to begin the second quarter and led 41-35 at halftime. Clark scored 17 points in the first half.

Martin hit a 3-pointer in the third quarter for a 52-41 lead, but UConn countered with 11 straight points and led 61-57 entering the fourth.

Iowa opened the final quarter with nine straight points for a 66-61 lead, but the Huskies countered and pulled away in the middle of the period, leading 79-70 after Carolina Ducharme’s 3-pointer with 3:42 left.

“Azzi Fudd really came to life in that third quarter,” Iowa coach Lisa Bluder said. “I was really pleased with our first half. If it wasn’t for that third quarter, but yes, we play four. And we missed some shots in the fourth quarter that we usually make.”


Iowa: Iowa dominated the battle of the 3-point line for much of the game. The Hawkeyes made 13 3-pointers to only eight for UConn.

UConn: Sunday was a tale of two halves for Fudd. Fudd started the game 1 for 8 from the field but was red-hot in the second half, going 9 for 11.


Iowa: The Hawkeyes will host N.C. State on Thursday.

UConn: The Huskies will host Providence on Friday.

No. 22 Tennessee beats No. 3 Kansas 64-50 for Atlantis title

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

PARADISE ISLAND, Bahamas – Tennessee’s players proved to be determined defenders and relentless rebounders, along with having the kind of toughness to ensure the reigning national champions would have little chance to get comfortable.

It was all enough to give the 22nd-ranked Volunteers a title of their own, along with the blueprint that coach Rick Barnes hopes they follow the rest of the year.

Santiago Vescovi scored 20 points while Tennessee locked down on third-ranked Kansas in a 64-50 win Friday night in the championship game at the Battle 4 Atlantis, snapping the Jayhawks’ 17-game winning streak.

Vescovi hit five 3-pointers as the tournament’s most valuable player for the Volunteers (5-1), who dominated the glass, overcame their own turnover troubles and made the Jayhawks work for clean looks. And for the third time in as many days, Tennessee won without leading scorer Josiah-Jordan James (knee soreness).

Perhaps that’s why reserve guard Zakai Zeigler, who had 14 points and four steals, showed up wearing sunglasses to the postgame news conference after the Volunteers had danced and hollered through the on-court trophy ceremony.

“We know if you can’t stop the man in front of you, then you’ll have no shot at winning the game,” Zeigler said, adding: “We just like to play defense, and we just happen to be good at it.”

The Vols held the Jayhawks to 32.1% shooting, bothering them with size and length around the rim. They also took the ball right at the Jayhawks with 5-foot-9 Zeigler leading the way, down to him refusing to let go of a jump ball and trading words with 6-8 forward Jalen Wilson.

Zeigler’s night included a 3-pointer to beat the shot clock at the 7-minute mark to push Tennessee’s lead to 56-38. He followed with another big one from the right wing with 4:42 left after Kansas had closed within 11.

Wilson and Joseph Yesefu each scored 14 points to lead the Jayhawks (6-1), who shot 28.6% in the first half and never warmed up. They made 5 of 21 3-pointers in what was an all-around rough night, from losing starting guard Dajuan Harris to fouls with 9 minutes left to failing to keep the Vols off the glass (45-27).

“We played a team tonight that was older and more mature and obviously played stronger and tougher,” Kansas coach Bill Self said. “We didn’t handle the situation near as well as what I would hope a poised team would.”


Tennessee: The Volunteers opened the tournament with a win over Butler, then grinded through an overtime win against Southern California in Thursday’s semifinals. This time, Tennessee played in front the entire way en route to its first title in three tries at the Atlantis resort.

“I think the main thing from the whole week was stay together through tough times, that’s what you’ve got to do,” Vescovi said.

Kansas: The Jayhawks didn’t have an easy first two days in the Bahamas. First came a battle to the final minutes with North Carolina State. Then came Thursday’s overtime win against Wisconsin on Bobby Pettiford Jr.’s last-second putback. But they never looked in any type of offensive flow this time with their smaller lineup.

“I feel like if we were able to get them out of place and not just have them standing there, waiting to contest a layup, that could’ve gave us some better chances at finishing at the rim,” Wilson said.


Tennessee held its three Atlantis opponents to 36.9% shooting and 15 of 59 (25.4%) from 3-point range. The Volunteers also averaged a +9 rebounding margin, ending with having Jonas Aidoo (nine) leading five players snagging at least six rebounds against Kansas.

“You can be a good defensive team but if you can’t be a great one if you give them second and third shots,” Barnes said.


Beyond Harris’ foul trouble, the Jayhawks played most of the way without Pettiford, who exited midway through the first half grabbing at his right leg.

Afterward, Self said he would be out “for a while” with a hamstring strain.


Tennessee: The Volunteers return home to host McNeese State on Wednesday.

Kansas: The Jayhawks host Texas Southern on Monday.