Late Night Snacks: No. 7 Arizona, No. 11 Wichita State and No. 19 Baylor among Saturday’s big winners

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GAME OF THE DAY: BYU 73, No. 3 Gonzaga 70

Not only did the Cougars end Gonzaga’s 41-game home win streak, but they also added a much-needed signature win to their NCAA tournament resume. Kyle Collinsworth scored 20 points and grabbed eight rebounds, and with Tyler Haws (ten points) held in check Skyler Halford provided 14 key points off the bench. Corbin Kaufusi (seven points, six rebounds and three blocks) was also effective for BYU, which did a good job of neutralizing Gonzaga’s Kyle Wiltjer as he made just two of his 11 shots from the field and finished with four points. As a result of the win BYU will be the two-seed at next week’s WCC tournament.

IMPORTANT OUTCOMES

1. No. 7 Arizona 63, No. 13 Utah 57

In their eight Pac-12 home games prior to Saturday night, Utah beat its opponents by an average of nearly 25 points per game. No one expected a similar result with Arizona visiting the Huntsman Center, and the Wildcats scored the final eight points of the game to win by six and clinch a share of the Pac-12 title. Kaleb Tarczewski scored 13 points and grabbed six rebounds and Gabe York added 12 points off the bench for Arizona. Delon Wright led all scorers with 17 points, but in a game that saw both teams defend exceptionally well the Runnin’ Utes shot 30.9% from the field.

2. No. 11 Wichita State 74, No. 10 Northern Iowa 60

The Shockers moved to the top of the Valley with a convincing home win over the Panthers, who beat them earlier in 2015 in conference play. Ron Baker had 17 points and seven assists to pace five Wichita State players with at least 11 points. Fred Van Vleet also added 13 points and seven assists and the Shockers had 19 assists to only three turnovers on Saturday afternoon.

3. No. 19 Baylor 78, No. 20 West Virginia 66

The Mountaineers began the game without Juwan Staten (knee) and lost Gary Browne (ankle) early in the first half, and that did not help their cause in Waco. But even with those injuries the Bears’ performance should not be overlooked, as four players scored in double figures and as a team Baylor shot 51.1% from the field and 8-for-15 from three. Taurean Prince scored 20 points and Royce O’Neale added 18 and seven assists for Scott Drew’s team, which has won four straight and seven of its last nine games. Freshman guard Jevon Carter led West Virginia with a career-high 25 points.

4. Boise State 56, No. 24 San Diego State 46

Leon Rice’s team is now two wins away from the top seed in the Mountain West thanks to their ten-point win at Viejas Arena. Derrick Marks shot just 6-for-22 from the field in scoring his 18 points, but James Webb III added 16 and 12 rebounds and Rob Heyer made some big plays on both ends of the floor in the second half. Winston Shepard was San Diego State’s lone double-digit scorer, as he tallied 16 points, but as a team the Aztecs made just 32.7% of their field goal attempts. Both teams are now 12-4 in conference play, but Boise State has the tiebreaker since they’ve swept the season series. And beyond that, this is a big win for the Broncos’ tournament resume.

RELATEDSaturday’s Bubble Banter

STARRED

1. LSU’s Tim Quarterman

Quarterman became the first Tiger since Shaquille O’Neal in the 1992 NCAA tournament to post a triple-double, accounting for 18 points, ten rebounds, ten assists and two blocks in LSU’s 73-63 win over Ole Miss.

2. Charleston Southern’s Saah Nimley

In Charleston Southern’s triple-overtime win over High Point, Nimley scored 38 points (8-for-20 3PT). As a result of the win, the Bucs will be the top seed in the Big South tournament.

3. Stony Brook’s Jameel Warney

Warney scored 32 points on 13-for-17 shooting from the field and grabbed 18 rebounds in the Seawolves’ 74-59 win at Hartford.

4. Murray State’s Cameron Payne

Payne’s name is one casual college basketball fans need to get to know ahead of conference tournament play. He racked up 31 points, eight rebounds and six assists in the Racers’ 73-67 win at UT-Martin. Murray State has now won 24 straight games.

STRUGGLED

1. NC State’s perimeter

The trio of Cat Barber, Trevor Lacey and Ralston Turner struggled to shoot against Boston College as the three combined to go 11-for-39 in a bad ACC loss. The trio was also 6-for-22 from 3-point range.

2. Texas’ Jonathan Holmes

Holmes finished the Longhorns’ 69-64 loss at Kansas with two points on 1-for-7 shooting. Texas needs more from their senior forward down the stretch.

3. Saint Mary’s forward Brad Waldow

Waldow was thoroughly neutralized by Santa Clara, as he scored just five points on 1-for-7 shooting in a one-point loss to the Broncos.

4. Gonzaga’s Kyle Wiltjer 

In the Bulldogs’ 73-70 loss to BYU, Wiltjer scored four points on 2-for-11 shooting from the field.

OTHER TOP 25 RESULTS

  • No. 1 Kentucky moved to 29-0 on the season with an 84-67 win over No. 18 Arkansas, and the Wildcats led by as many as 31 points in the second half. The Wildcats have now won 46 SEC regular season titles.
  • No. 6 Villanova picked off Xavier on the road in the Big East behind a big second-half effort. The Wildcats shot 13-for-29 from 3-point range and Dylan Ennis led the scoring with 16 points.
  • Earning a Big Ten home win was No. 14 Maryland with a victory over Michigan. Melo Trimble had 19 points and five assists to pace the Terps.
  • No. 15 North Carolina bested Miami on the road in the ACC as Brice Johnson had 22 points and
  • Oklahoma overcame and eight-point halftime deficit to defeat TCU at home as Buddy Hield had 21 points.
  • No. 17 Louisville cruised past Florida State as Wayne Blackshear had 18 points and Montrezl Harrell added 16 and a ridiculous alley-oop.
  • In the Big East, No. 23 Butler outlasted DePaul on the road as Kellen Dunham had 24 points.
  • No. 22 VCU shot just 34 percent from the field as they lost 59-55 to Dayton in Richmond. The victorious Flyers are now tied with Rhode Island and Davidson atop the Atlantic 10 standings.
  • Wesley Iwundu made two big defensive plays in the game’s final minute to help propel Kansas State to a 70-69 win over No. 12 Iowa State. But even with the Cyclones having lost two straight, there’s no need for their fans to panic.
  • London Perrantes made his return to the court for No. 2 Virginia, which beat Virginia Tech by 12 in Blacksburg. Perrantes finished with 11 points and six assists for the Cavaliers, who have clinched at least a share of the ACC regular season title.
  • Perry Ellis went for 28 points and 13 rebounds as No. 8 Kansas moved one step closer to yet another Big 12 title with a 69-64 win over Texas.
  • No. 4 Duke coasted to a 73-54 win over Syracuse, with Justise Winslow scoring 23 points and grabbing nine rebounds and Jahlil Okafor (13 points, 14 rebounds) posting another double-double.

NOTABLES

  • Georgia did what they could to improve its NCAA Tournament standing with a home win over Missouri. The Bulldogs have now won three straight entering this week’s clash with No. 1 Kentucky.
  • St. John’s earned a quality home win over Georgetown in the Big East as Phil Greene had 26 points, 6 rebounds and Sir’Dominic Pointer had 24 points and 8 rebounds.
  • Rhode Island escaped with a road win over La Salle as E.C. Matthews had 21 points.
  • Two games went to triple overtime on Saturday: Charleston Southern’s 97-93 win over High Point and UAB’s 100-95 win over Middle Tennessee.
  • Clemson got past Georgia Tech in overtime as Jaron Blossomgame had 19 points to lead the Tigers. After blowing a 19-point lead to force the extra frame, Clemson regrouped in the final five minutes.
  • Bucknell held off American 71-69 to wrap up the outright Patriot League title. The Bison will be the top seed in the conference tournament, meaning that they’ll have home court for as long as they remain alive.
  • North Carolina Central moved to 14-0 in the MEAC with a win over Bethune-Cookman, wrapping up their second consecutive outright regular season conference title.
  • Wofford wrapped up the outright SoCon regular season title with a 62-60 win at Furman.
  • Green Bay wrapped up the two-seed in the Horizon League tournament with an 83-63 win over Oakland, with Keifer Sykes and Greg Mays scoring 21 points apiece. The win earns the Phoenix a bye into the semifinals.
  • Jacksonville upset FGCU 75-67, meaning that North Florida will be the top seed (and outright regular season champ) in the Atlantic Sun tournament (this gives them home court throughout the tournament).
  • Montana rebounded from a triple-overtime loss at Idaho Thursday night, as they won 77-76 at Eastern Washington. Montana, EWU and Sacramento State are locked in a race to see who will win the Big Sky and host the conference tournament as a result with the Hornets currently in first place.
  • The CAA has a four-way tie atop the conference standings, with William & Mary, UNCW, Northeastern and James Madison being the four teams. And that’s your order for the seeds in next week’s conference tournament in Baltimore, with the Tribe being the top seed.
  • Saint Mary’s fell by a point at Santa Clara, and given their overall resume the Gaels may need to run the table at the WCC tournament in Las Vegas next weekend.
  • Harvard and Yale both picked up wins on Saturday, setting up a showdown of 10-2 teams Friday night at Harvard. The winner would be one win away from earning the Ivy League’s NCAA tournament bid.
  • Even without the suspended Tim Floyd, UTEP’s game against Southern Miss seemed relatively harmless. Well the Golden Eagles pulled off the 63-60 upset, dropping the Miners into a three-way tie for third in Conference USA two games behind Louisiana Tech in the loss column.
  • Tulsa erased a nine-point second half deficit and went on to win 74-72 in overtime at Memphis, avoiding a loss that would not have helped their chances of getting into the NCAA tournament. The Golden Hurricane are now tied with SMU atop the American (14-2 records for both).
  • Two days after they beat first-place UC Davis, UCSB held off UC Irvine at home. As a result of the Gauchos’ win over the Anteaters, UC Davis has clinched at least a share of the Big West title.

Kentucky moves scrimmage to Eastern Kentucky for flood relief

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LEXINGTON, Ky. — Kentucky will play its annual Blue-White men’s basketball scrimmage in Eastern Kentucky to benefit victims of the devastating summer floods.

The school announced that the Oct. 22 event at Appalachian Wireless Arena in Pikeville will feature a pregame Fan Fest. Ticket proceeds will go through Team Eastern Kentucky Flood Relief.

Wildcat players will also participate in a community service activity with local organizations in the relief effort.

Kentucky coach John Calipari said the team was excited to play for Eastern Kentucky fans and added, “We hope we can provide a temporary escape with basketball and community engagement.”

The scrimmage traditionally is held at Rupp Arena. It will occur eight days after its Big Blue Madness public workout at Rupp.

Kentucky’s Tionna Herron recovering from open-heart surgery

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LEXINGTON, Ky. — Kentucky coach Kyra Elzy says freshman Tionna Herron is recovering from open-heart surgery to correct a structural abnormality.

The 6-foot-4 post player learned of her condition after arriving at school in June and received other opinions before surgery was recommended. Senior trainer Courtney Jones said in a release that Herron underwent surgery Aug. 24 at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston and is recovering at home in DeSoto, Texas.

Elzy said Herron “is the definition of a warrior” and all are grateful to be on the other side of the player’s surgery. Herron is expected back on campus early next month and will continue rehabilitation until she’s cleared to return to normal activity.

“Her will and determination to eventually return to the court is inspiring, and it’s that `game-on’ attitude that is what makes her such a perfect fit in our program,” Elzy said in a release. “We are so thrilled for Tionna’s return to our locker room; it’s not the same without our full team together.”

Herron committed to Kentucky during last fall’s early signing period, rated as a four-star prospect and a top-70 player in last year’s class. Kentucky won last year’s Southeastern Conference Tournament and reached the NCAA Tournament’s first round.

Emoni Bates charged with 2 felonies

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SUPERIOR TOWNSHIP, Mich — Emoni Bates, a former basketball prodigy who transferred to Eastern Michigan from Memphis, was charged with two felonies after police found a gun in a car during a traffic stop.

The 18-year-old Bates failed to stop at an intersection Sunday night and a search turned up the weapon, said Derrick Jackson, a spokesman for the Washtenaw County sheriff’s office.

Defense attorney Steve Haney told The Associated Press that the vehicle and the gun didn’t belong to Bates.

“I hope people can reserve judgment and understand there’s a presumption of innocence,” Haney said. “This was not his vehicle. This was not his gun. … We’re still gathering facts, too.”

Bates was charged with carrying a concealed weapon and altering identification marks on a firearm. He was released after his lawyer entered a not guilty plea. Bates’ next court hearing is Oct. 6.

“This is his first brush with the law,” Haney said in court. “He poses no threat or risk to society.”

Less than a month ago, the 6-foot-9 Bates transferred to Eastern Michigan to play for his hometown Eagles. Bates averaged nearly 10 points a game last season as a freshman at Memphis, where he enrolled after reclassifying to skip a year of high school and join the class of 2021.

“We are aware of a situation involving one of our student athletes,” EMU spokesman Greg Steiner said. “We are working to gather more details and will have further comment when more information is available.”

Bates was the first sophomore to win the Gatorade national player of the year award in high school basketball in 2020, beating out Cade Cunningham and Evan Mobley. Detroit drafted Cunningham No. 1 overall last year, two spots before Cleveland took Mobley in the 2021 NBA draft.

Bates committed to playing for Tom Izzo at Michigan State two years ago, later de-committed and signed with Memphis. Bates played in 18 games for the Tigers, who finished 22-11 under Penny Hardaway. Bates missed much of the season with a back injury before appearing in Memphis’ two NCAA Tournament games.

In 2019, as a high school freshman, the slender and skilled guard led Ypsilanti Lincoln to a state title and was named Michigan’s Division 1 Player of the Year by The Associated Press. His sophomore season was cut short by the pandemic and he attended Ypsi Prep Academy as a junior, his final year of high school.

UConn to pay Kevin Ollie another $3.9 million over firing

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STORRS, Conn. — UConn announced Thursday it has agreed to pay former men’s basketball coach Kevin Ollie another $3.9 million to settle discrimination claims surrounding his 2018 firing.

The money is in addition to the more than $11.1 million in back salary Ollie has already been paid after an arbitrator ruled in January that he was improperly fired under the school’s agreement with its professor’s union.

“I am grateful that we were able to reach agreement,” Ollie said in a statement Thursday. “My time at UConn as a student-athlete and coach is something I will always cherish. I am pleased that this matter is now fully and finally resolved.”

Ollie, a former UConn point guard who guided the Huskies to a 127-79 record and the 2014 national championship in six seasons as head coach, was let go after two losing seasons. UConn also stopped paying him under his contract, citing numerous NCAA violations in terminating the deal.

In 2019, the NCAA placed UConn on probation for two years and Ollie was sanctioned individually for violations, which the NCAA found occurred between 2013 and 2018. Ollie’s attorneys, Jacques Parenteau and William Madsen, accused UConn of making false claims to the NCAA for the purpose of firing Ollie “with cause.”

The school had argued that Ollie’s transgressions were serious and that his individual contract superseded those union protections.

Ollie’s lawyers had argued that white coaches, including Hall-of-Famers Jim Calhoun and women’s coach Geno Auriemma, had also committed NCAA violations, without being fired, and indicated they were planning to file a federal civil rights lawsuit.

The school and Ollie said in a joint statement Thursday they were settling “to avoid further costly and protracted litigation.”

Both sides declined to comment further.

Ollie, who faced three years of restrictions from the NCAA on becoming a college basketball coach again, is currently coaching for Overtime Elite, a league that prepares top prospects who are not attending college for the pros.

Dream’s McDonald returning to Arizona to coach under Barnes

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TUCSON, Ariz. — Atlanta Dream guard Aari McDonald is returning to Arizona to work under coach Adia Barnes.

The school announced that McDonald will serve as director of recruiting operations while continuing to fulfill her WNBA commitments. She will oversee all recruiting logistics, assist with on-campus visits, manage recruit information and social media content at Arizona.

McDonald was one of the best players in Arizona history after transferring from Washington as a sophomore. She was an All-American and the Pac-12 player of the year in 2020-21, leading the Wildcats to the national championship game, which they lost to Stanford.

McDonald broke Barnes’ single-season scoring record and had the highest career scoring average in school history before being selected by the Dream with the third overall pick of the 2021 WNBA draft.