Late Night Snacks: San Diego State and BYU engage in double OT thriller; Nova, Zona earn big wins; Indiana upset at home

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source: AP
Aqeel Quinn had a career-high 22 points during San Diego State’s double overtime win over BYU. (AP)

 

GAME OF THE NIGHT: No. 15 San Diego State 92, BYU 87, 2 OT

There’s just something about the Maui Invitational. Every year, the tournament produces an instant classic and the finale from the first day of action gave us a double-overtime thriller as the Aztecs outlasted a gritty effort from BYU. This was your classic offense (BYU) vs. defense (San Diego State) focus and San Diego State held on and won despite never trailing in regulation and then falling behind in the first overtime. BYU used tremendous performances from guards Tyler Haws (26 points) and a rejuvenated Kyle Collinsworth (21 points, seven rebounds, six assists, three steals), who looked fully healthy for the first time this season after recovering from a torn ACL suffered only eight months ago. But the Aztecs took the best punch the Cougars had to offer in the first overtime and countered with a game-tying three-pointer from Aqeel Quinn (career-high 22 points) to force a second overtime and the clutch shot energized San Diego State in the second overtime. Winston Shepard had a solid 18-point, 8-rebound performance for the Aztecs and his energy on the defensive end also made a major impact. San Diego State moves on to face Pitt in the semifinals at Maui on Tuesday.

THE OTHER GAME OF THE NIGHT: Eastern Washington 88, Indiana 86

The Hoosiers looked to be off to a solid 4-0 start on the season but fell at home to Eastern Washington for a surprising home loss. Indiana allowed 53 second-half points and Eastern Washington shot 51 percent from the field and had three 20-point scorers as Drew Brandon (27 points), Tyler Harvey (25 points) and Venky Jois (20 points, 14 rebounds, five blocks) all had big games. In order to improve in the Big Ten this season, Indiana has to defend better and allowing 53 points in the second half won’t help that cause. Eastern Washington snapped Indiana’s 43-game home non-conference winning streak with the win and overcame a 12-point second half deficit to earn an impressive road win.

IMPORTANT OUTCOMES

1. No. 12 Villanova 77, No. 14 VCU 53

I can’t say I expected this kind of outcome from the Legends Classic in Brooklyn, but the Wildcats looked great in an easy win. JayVaughn Pinkston led four Villanova double-figure scorers with 15 points while Darrun Hilliard added 14. The Wildcats also had some key performances from their bench as Kris Jenkins chipped in 13 points and Josh Hart had 10 points.

2. No. 3 Arizona 72, Missouri 53

This wasn’t the stiffest of tests for the No. 3 Wildcats, but it was nice to see them on national television playing a power conference opponent on a neutral floor. Arizona responded well with a big win as its defense rose to the occasion and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson came off the bench to score 15 points and grab six rebounds. It’ll be a fun matchup of Wildcats when Arizona and Kansas State matchup in the second round of the Maui Invitational on Tuesday.

3. No. 13 Iowa State 84, Alabama 74

The Cyclones beat a talented Georgia State team at home last week, but Monday night’s CBE Hall of Fame Classic semifinal win over Alabama on a neutral site is a solid win. Georges Niang went for a game-high 28 points and sophomore sharpshooter Matt Thomas returned from suspension to give Iowa State 13 points. Monte Morris also added 12 assists while never turning the ball over and he remains one of the country’s most efficient point guards.

STARRED

1. Melo Trimble, Maryland

Maryland needed a star performance from its freshman All-American and the 6-foot-3 Trimble delivered with 31 points in a close win over Arizona State. Trimble was also incredibly efficient, as he shot 7-for-11 from the field, 4-for-6 from three-point range and 13-for-14 from the free-throw line. The Terrapins are off to a 4-0 start.

2. Sterling Gibbs, Seton Hall

The junior guard did everything he could to make sure Seton Hall won the Paradise Jam over Illinois State and did so by scoring 40 points in the Pirates’ 84-80 win. Gibbs scored the 40 points on only 14 field goal attempts as he went 10-for-14 from the floor, 7-for-9 from three-point range and 13-for-13 from the free-throw line.

3. Marcus Foster, Kansas State

In a Kansas State win over Purdue at the Maui Invitational, the sophomore guard went for 24 points on 9-of-14 shooting and 5-for-8 shooting from the three-point line as he made tough shots and clutch shots to put the Boilermakers in the loser’s bracket. Foster facing Arizona tomorrow should be a really interesting matchup because the west coast version of the Wildcats are really defending hard at the moment.

STRUGGLED

1. Savannah State’s offense

Playing on the road at No. 6 Louisville, the Tigers fell behind 29-0 and didn’t score for nearly 16 minutes in the first half. Savannah State eventually lost 87-26 to Louisville. Rick Pitino’s quotes after the game are about the only interesting thing about this one.

2. Purdue center A.J. Hammons

I was hoping we had moved past this point, but Purdue junior center A.J. Hammons provided the inconsistent play we saw at times last season by only scoring six points in 10 minutes of a Maui Invitational loss to Kansas State. Hammons also grabbed only two rebounds and watched much of the game from the bench as true freshman center Isaac Haas thoroughly outplayed him. Hammons needs to be better if Purdue has a chance at playing in the postseason this year.

3. Marquette’s offense

After losing at home to Nebraska-Omaha over the weekend, it very nearly got worse for Marquette on Monday night as they trailed N.J.I.T., 30-28 at the half before rallying for a 62-57 win. The Golden Eagles shot just 35 percent from the field and looked out of sync on offense for much of the evening. After dropping two straight before this near-upset, it doesn’t get any easier for Marquette as its next three games are against Georgia Tech, Wisconsin and Arizona State.

NOTABLES

  • Clemson edged LSU, 64-61 in the Paradise Jam as Demarcus Harrison had 16 points.
  • Travis Trice: real game no gimmicks. The senior point guard led No. 20 Michigan State with a game-high 19 points and eight assists in a 79-52 win over Santa Clara.
  • Xavier freshman wing Trevon Bluiett continues a strong start as he finished with 19 points in a win over Mirray State.
  • The nation’s highest-scoring offense this season so far has been Illinois and the Illini put up 89 more points in an 89-58 win over Brown as guard Aaron Cosby had 18 points.
  • No. 11 Kansas cruised past Rider as Brannen Greene and Perry Ellis each tallied 17 points.
  • Iowa held off Pepperdine as Aaron White went for 17 points, nine rebounds and four steals.
  • LeBryan Nash finished with 19 points and six rebounds to lead Oklahoma State past Oregon State in a battle of unbeatens at the MGM Grand Main Event.
  • Ryan Harrow went for 23 points and R.J. Hunter added 13 points as Georgia State rolled over Chicago State.
  • Memphis earned an easy home win over Prairie View A&M as forward Shaq Goodwin had 16 points on six rebounds on a perfect 6-for-6 from the field.
  • TCU moved to 4-0 on the season as they rolled past Mississippi Valley State. Senior guard Kyan Anderson had 19 points in only 12 minutes of action.
  • MAC Player of the Year candidate Julius Brown led Toledo to a 92-65 win over Bucknell as the senior point guard finished with 20 points, seven assists and four rebounds.
  • Royce O’Neal stuffed the stat sheet for 19 points, 14 rebounds, five assists, two steals and two blocks as he played 38 minutes and shot 7-for-9 from the field in Baylor’s 67-51 win over Stephen F. Austin.
  • Pitt senior big man Derrick Randall outrebounded Chaminade 21-17 by himself in a Maui Invitational first-round win. Randall also added 10 points and Michael Young had 27 points and 15 rebounds as well for Pitt.

Arizona State extends Hurley through 2025-26 season

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TEMPE, Ariz. – Arizona State has agreed to a contract extension with men’s basketball coach Bobby Hurley that runs through the 2025-26 season.

The deal announced on Tuesday is subject to approval by the Arizona Board of Regents. Hurley’s previous contract was set to expire after next season.

“Coach Hurley has made our program relevant nationally with many significant wins and an exciting style, along with a firm commitment to the academic success of our student-athletes,” Arizona State athletic director Ray Anderson said in a statement. “He has made it clear to us that he wants to be here and we have done likewise with him. We share a strong confidence in the present and future state of Sun Devil men’s basketball.”

Hurley led the Sun Devils to 23 wins this season and their third trip to the NCAA Tournament the last five times it has been played. Arizona State beat Nevada in the First Four before losing to Texas Christian on a last-second shot last Friday.

The Sun Devils have won at least 20 games four of the past six seasons. They are 141-113 in eight seasons under Hurley.

Campbell new TCU women’s coach after taking Sac St to NCAA

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FORT WORTH, Texas – Mark Campbell was hired as TCU’s women’s basketball coach Tuesday after the former Oregon assistant took Sacramento State to its first NCAA Tournament in an impressive and quick turnaround.

Sacramento State was coming off a 3-22 season when Campbell was hired two years ago. The Hornets won 14 games in Campbell’s first season, and then made another 11-win improvement this season while finishing 25-8 with Big Sky regular-season and tournament championships.

During his seven seasons on Oregon’s staff before that, the Ducks had some of the nation’s top recruiting classes. That included Campbell recruiting Sabrina Ionescu, who became the AP player of the year in 2020 before she was the first overall pick in the WNBA draft.

Campbell replaces Raegan Pebley, who stepped down after nine seasons as TCU’s coach with a 141-138 record. The Horned Frogs were 8-23 this season, including 1-17 in Big 12 play during the regular season.

TCU athletic director Jeremiah Donati described Campbell as an elite recruiter and program builder.

“Similar to his success at Sacramento State, he was instrumental in Oregon quickly becoming one of the nation’s most successful programs, reaching their first NCAA Elite Eight and then Final Four,” Donati said.

The Frogs haven’t been to the NCAA Tournament since 2010. That was their ninth NCAA appearance, all coming in a 10-season span without making it past the second round.

Boston College extends Earl Grant through 2028-29 season

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BOSTON – Boston College coach Earl Grant has agreed to a two-year extension that will keep him under contract through the 2028-29 season.

Grant took over as Eagles coach prior to the 2021-22 season and finished 13-20. Boston College went 16-17 this past season, but it had three wins over nationally ranked teams for the first time in 14 years.

“My family and I have enjoyed being a part of this amazing community,” Grant said in a statement. “Boston is a great city and we are glad to call it our home. I am thankful for the efforts of my staff to help move the program forward.”

The Eagles finished 9-11 in Atlantic Coast Conference play, their most wins in the league play since 2010-11. Quinten Post also became the first Boston College player to be named Most Improved Player.

In announcing the extension, athletic director Blake James expressed optimism about the direction of the program.

“Earl has done an outstanding job leading our men’s basketball program over the last two seasons and we are looking forward to him doing so for many years to come,” James said.

Pitino returns to big stage at St. John’s: ‘I’ve earned it’

Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports
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NEW YORK – The video banner above the entrance to Madison Square Garden on Tuesday read: “Welcome Rick Pitino.”

More like welcome back for the new St. John’s coach.

Back to The Garden, where he once coached the Knicks.

Back to the Big East, the conference that launched his stardom and where he won his last NCAA championship.

Back to big-time college basketball after a series of scandals made it seem as if that part of his career was over.

“So, when I went to Iona, I said that Iona was going to be my last job,” Pitino said at his introductory news conference at MSG. “And the reason I said that is who’s going to hire a 70-year-old ? No matter how much I think I’m Peter Pan, who’s going hire a 70-year-old?”

St. John’s gave the Hall of Famer a six-year contract to turn back the clock on a program that once stole New York City tabloid headlines away from the Knicks in the 1980s under coach Lou Carnesecca but has been mired in mediocrity for more than two decades.

The Red Storm once played most of their biggest home games at The Garden. Pitino said the goal is to have all their Big East games played there going forward.

“Lou built a legendary program. Legendary,” Pitino said. “I’m all in with everything that St. John stands for. I’m excited about it. I can’t wait to get started.

“And it’s going to start with a culture of work.”

Pitino, who was born in New York City and grew up on Long Island, has won 832 games in 34 full seasons as a college head coach, including NCAA championships at Kentucky in 1996 and Louisville in 2013.

The title at Louisville was vacated for NCAA violations, and another NCAA case related to the FBI’s investigation into corruption in college basketball recruiting led to Pitino being fired by Louisville in 2017.

The final ruling from the NCAA’s outside enforcement arm on the FBI case came down in November and exonerated Pitino.

There was also a criminal extortion case in which Pitino was the victim during his time at Louisville that revealed personal indiscretions.

“Well, it doesn’t matter what you believe, what you don’t believe,” Pitino said. “The one thing all my players have said, because they all wrote letters for me: I’ve never cheated the game. I never gave a player anything that he didn’t deserve in life.”

St. John’s president, the Rev. Brian Shanley, said the decision to hire Pitino was his call.

“Yeah, sure, there’s some reputational risk because of things that have happened before, but I think Rick is at a point in his life where he’s learned from things that have happened in the past,” Shanley told The Associated Press. “I think he’d be the first one to tell you he’s done things that he regrets. Who doesn’t when you get to be that age? I know I have. I’m a believer in forgiveness and new beginnings as a priest, and I think Rick’s going to do a great job for St. John’s.”

Carnesecca, 98 and getting around with the help of a walker these days, sat in the front row of Pitino’s news conference.

“I think it’s a home run with the bases loaded,” Carnesecca said.

Carnesecca was one of the Big East’s brightest coaching stars, along with Georgetown’s John Thompson and Villanova’s Rollie Massimino, when Pitino became Providence head coach in 1985 at the age of 32.

Thirty-eight years later, Pitino’s Providence ties helped him land at St. John’s after three seasons at Iona, a small Catholic school in New Rochelle, just north of New York City.

Shanley previously was the president of Providence. He helped turn around a lagging men’s basketball program by hiring coach Ed Cooley and investing in facilities upgrades.

“If I wasn’t a Providence Friar, he would have never even considered it,” Pitino said.

Shanley attempted to lure Pitino away from Louisville and back to Providence years ago, but he didn’t know much about the coach personally back then. He said he talked to a lot of people about Pitino this time around.

“I’d say my behind-the-scenes wisdom person was Mike Tranghese, the former commissioner of the Big East,” Shanley said. “He got me Ed Cooley last time, and I think we came out pretty well this time, too.”

Cooley was hired by Georgetown on Monday.

Pitino said he’s bringing his entire staff with him from Iona, which announced the hiring of Fairleigh Dickinson coach Tobin Anderson to replace Pitino earlier in the day.

Pitino will try to become the first coach to take six different schools to the NCAA Tournament as he gets one more shot on the big stage.

“I deserve it,” he said, “because I’ve earned it.”

Tobin Anderson leaving FDU to replace Rick Pitino at Iona

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NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. — Tobin Anderson is leaving NCAA Cinderella Fairleigh Dickinson after one fairy-tale season and replacing Rick Pitino at Iona.

Iona athletic director Matt Glovaski announced the hiring a day after Pitino left to take the job at St. John’s of the Big East Conference.

Anderson led the No. 16 seed Knights to a win over No. 1 Purdue in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament last week, only the second time a No. 16 seed has knocked off a top-seeded team. UMBC beat No. 1 Virginia in 2018.

“Iona University represents everything my family and I were looking for in a school, a basketball program and a campus atmosphere,” Anderson said in a statement. “Our goal is to build upon the tremendous tradition of Iona basketball and elevate the program to greater heights.”

Iona of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference was knocked out of this year’s tournament by UConn on Friday.

“We have long known him to be a fantastic coach and an even better person,” Glovaski said. “Now, with his team’s impressive run in the NCAA Tournament, everyone paying attention to March Madness also knows this. We’re delighted that he will be at the helm of our men’s basketball program.”

Anderson led FDU to a 21-16 overall record and 10-6 in Northeast Conference play. The Knights lost to Merrimack in the conference title game but got the NCAA berth because Merrimack was ineligible to compete as a transitioning school from Division II.

FDU, one of the shorter teams in the 68-team field, beat Texas Southern in a First Four game and followed that with the upset over Purdue. Florida Atlantic knocked the Knights out of the tournament on Sunday.

FDU had a 4-22 record in 2021-22. Anderson was hired after running the program at St. Thomas Aquinas, located less than 25 miles (40 km) from Iona’s campus. In nine seasons, he turned the team into a perennial Top 25 program in Division II after inheriting a team that won just five games prior to his hire.

Anderson got his first taste of Division I coaching, serving as an assistant at Siena for two seasons from 2011–2013. Before his time at Siena, Anderson was a head coach at the Division III level at Hamilton College and Clarkson University in upstate New York. He worked as an assistant at Clarkson and Le Moyne College.

Anderson graduated from Wesleyan University in 1995.