(AP Photo/George Frey)

SATURDAY’S SNACKS: Utah, Texas, Miami earned wins over ranked teams

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IMPORTANT OUTCOMES

No. 22 Utah 70, No. 9 Arizona 64: The Utes moved into second place in the PAC-12 with the huge home win over Arizona. CBT’s Rob Dauster has more on Utah’s strong stretch of play.

No. 25 Texas 76, No. 3 Oklahoma 63: Texas ran past Oklahoma when the Sooners couldn’t find offense in the final five minutes. Buddy Hield had 33 points, but the Longhorns had five in double-figures led by Isaiah Taylor’s 18 points. I have more on this one here.

No. 12 Miami 73, No. 11 Louisville 65: Miami’s defense came up big in the late stages of this one as they held the Louisville offense to only one field goal in the last five minutes. I have more on why this one’s important for Miami’s ACC regular season hopes while Louisville might be truly playing for nothing now.

No. 20 Purdue 83, No. 10 Maryland 79: The Boilermakers lent their in-state rival Indiana a helping hand in the Big Ten race, as they beat Maryland by four in West Lafayette. CBT’s Raphielle Johnson has more on the Boilermakers’ rebounding effort, which was the difference in the game.

Vanderbilt 74, No. 16 Kentucky 62: The Commodores added a much-needed quality victory to its résumé, possibly punching their ticket to the NCAA tournament according to CBT’s Rob Dauster. Jamal Murray led Kentucky with 33 points to go along with nine rebounds.

BUBBLE BANTER: See how Saturday’s results factored into the bubble

STARRED

Michael Gbinije, Syracuse: In a game that the Orange couldn’t afford to lose, the senior scored 34 points and went 11-for-18 from the field and 8-for-13 from 3-point range in a win over N.C. State. Gbinije also had six assists, four rebounds and three blocks for the game.

Eric Fanning, Boston University: Fanning accounted for 25 points, 16 rebounds and three assists in the Terriers’ 83-68 win over Holy Cross.

Tim Kempton, Lehigh: 23 points, 18 rebounds and four assists in the Mountain Hawks’ 82-72 win at Army.

Joseph Chartouny, Fordham: Chartouny’s been one of the best freshmen in the Atlantic 10 this season, and he produced his best outing of the season in the Rams’ 91-82 win over Davidson. 24 points, seven rebounds and 13 assists.

STRUGGLED

San Diego State at the foul line: Leading by nine with 1:04 remaining, the Aztecs went 0-for-7 from the foul line in a game they wound up losing 66-63 to Boise State.

Michael Carrera, South Carolina: Carrera finished with six points, shooting 1-for-8 from the field, and eight rebounds in the Gamecocks’ loss at Mississippi State.

Steven Spieth, Brown: Spieth missed all eight of his shot attempts in Brown’s 61-52 home loss to Harvard.

OTHER TOP 25 RESULTS

  • No. 1 Villanova picked up a road win at Marquette in the Big East as Kris Jenkins and Josh Hart both had 19 points.
  • No. 2 Kansas had little trouble taking down Texas Tech at home for a Big 12 win. The victory gives the Jayhawks a share of their 12th consecutive regular season title. Svi Mykhailiuk had 17 points off the bench in the win.
  • No. 14 West Virginia took care of business on the road, beating Oklahoma State 70-56. Devin Williams finished the game with 13 points and 15 rebounds.
  • Matt Thomas scored 20 points and Georges Niang added 17 as No. 17 Iowa State beat Kansas State 80-61 in Ames. The Cyclones were too much for the Wildcats offensively, as they averaged 1.27 points per possession.
  • No. 19 Baylor controlled the action from start to finish as they won 86-71 at TCU. Johnathan Motley and Taurean Prince scored 22 points apiece in the win.
  • No. 21 Texas A&M moved into a tie for first place in the SEC with an 84-69 win at Missouri. Jalen Jones led the way offensively with 20 points while also grabbing six rebounds.
  • Florida State kept its NCAA tournament hopes alive with a 77-56 beating of No. 23 Notre Dame. Dwayne Bacon scored 21 points and Jarquez Smith 14 for the Seminoles.

OTHER NOTABLE RESULTS

  • Butler beat Georgetown in overtime as Kellen Dunham had 29 points. The win was necessary for the Bulldogs’ at-large hopes.
  • Northwestern clobbered Rutgers as the Scarlet Knights remain winless in the Big Ten. Tre Demps had 24 points to pace the Wildcats.
  • In a battle of bubble teams in the Atlantic 10, VCU took down George Washington as Jonathan Williams had 17 points.
  • Rhode Island defeated Dayton on the road for an Atlantic 10 upset as Jared Terrell had 18 points and Four McGlynn ended up with 16 points.
  • Wichita State was a winner over Illinois State as Fred VanVleet and Anton Grady both scored 16 points.
  • Georgia earned a home SEC win over Ole Miss as J.J. Frazier had 26 points.
  • Mississippi State continues to be a tough out in the SEC as they earned a win over South Carolina. Gavin Ware had 16 points to lead the Bulldogs.
  • Cincinnati picked up a road win in the American over East Carolina as Troy Caupain had 27 points.
  • Temple earned a close win over UCF at home as Obi Enechionyia had 18 points. The Owls move to 12-4 in the American.
  • Georgia Tech defeated Boston College in the ACC as Marcus Georges-Hunt had 23 points, five rebounds and three assists.
  • UAB is the outright Conference USA regular season champion, thanks to the combination of their 71-67 win over Western Kentucky and Marshall’s 83-74 loss at Middle Tennessee.
  • Northern Iowa picked up a road win at Evansville as Wes Washpun had 14 points. The Panthers will be a dangerous team in Arch Madness.
  • Tim Kempton went for 23 points and 18 rebounds as Lehigh locked up the No. 2 seed in the Patriot League tournament with a win over Army.
  • Jimmy Gavin had 31 points as Winthrop beat Campbell to finish tied atop the Big South with High Point. High Point, which beat Winthrop by two Thursday night, will be the top seed in next week’s conference tournament.
  • Hofstra wrapped up the top seed in the CAA tournament with a 72-63 win over Charleston. Joe Mihalich’s Pride closed the regular season with six straight wins.
  • Boise State went on a game-ending 12-0 run to beat San Diego State, 66-63. The loss ends SDSU’s streak of 164 straight wins in game they led with five minutes remaining.
  • Vermont won 76-62 at Stony Brook, sewing up the three seed in next week’s America East tournament. Stony Brook, as the top seed, will have home-court advantage for as long as they’re alive in the event.
  • Stephen F. Austin moved to 15-0 in the Southland with an 82-54 win over Houston Baptist. In two-plus seasons under Brad Underwood, SFA is 54-1 against conference foes (regular season & tournament).
  • Little Rock wrapped up the outright Sun Belt regular season title with a 73-68 win over Texas State. Chris Beard’s Trojans are 26-3, and they’ll be a dangerous team in the NCAA tournament if in the field.
  • Gonzaga held off BYU 71-68 in Provo to claim a share of the WCC regular season title. The Bulldogs finish tied with Saint Mary’s, which will be the top seed as a result of their sweep of the season series with Gonzaga.
  • Yale remained in first place in the Ivy League with a 76-71 overtime win over Dartmouth. The 11-1 Bulldogs are a half-game ahead of Princeton (10-1), with Columbia (9-3) now two games back.
  • Once again playing without Joel Bolomboy, Weber State beat Montana 60-54 in a matchup of the two best teams in the Big Sky. Randy Rahe’s Wildcats now have the head-to-head tiebreaker in the race for the top seed in the conference tournament.
  • Fresno State strengthened its grip on second place in the Mountain West with a 92-82 win at New Mexico. The win is the Bulldogs’ first over New Mexico at The Pit.
  • CSU Bakersfield beat Grand Canyon 77-62, with the result meaning that New Mexico State wins the outright WAC regular season title for a second straight season.

Louisville challenges NCAA over recruiting allegations

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Louisville has refuted NCAA allegations against its men’s basketball program in the wake of a federal corruption scandal, requesting that the highest-level violation be reclassified.

The university also is challenging that former coach Rick Pitino failed to promote an atmosphere of compliance in his program.

Louisville filed a 104-page response last week to the Notice Of Allegations sent to the school in May. The document stated that college sports’ governing body seeks to ignore wire fraud convictions against several people involved in the scheme – including a former Adidas executive – by suggesting they were representing its athletic interests. Louisville’s contract with the apparel maker was a standard sponsorship agreement rather than a promotional deal, the response added.

“This argument is as novel as it is wrong,” the school wrote in its response. “Even if an institution has some responsibility for the conduct of its suppliers, that responsibility plainly does not extend to acts of fraud perpetrated against the institution itself.”

Louisville also seeks to have several second-tier violations reclassified even lower. The NCAA has until Nov. 15 to respond with the school responding 15 days after before a decision is made whether the case will proceed through the traditional Committee on Infractions or Independent Accountability Review Process (IARP).

The NCAA’s Notice of Allegations states that Louisville committed a Level I violation, considered the most severe, with an improper recruiting offer and extra benefits along with several lesser violations. Those lesser violations also include Pitino failing to promote an atmosphere of compliance.

The NCAA notice completed a two-year investigation following a federal corruption probe of college basketball announced in September 2017. Louisville acknowledged its involvement in the federal investigation related to the recruitment of former player Brian Bowen II. Pitino, who’s now coaching Iona, was not named in the federal complaint and has consistently denied authorizing or having knowledge of a payment to a recruit’s family.

Louisville has previously indicated it would accept responsibility for violations it committed but would contest allegations it believed were not supported by facts. The school also noted corrective measures taken in the scandal’s immediate aftermath, such as suspending and then firing Pitino and athletic director Tom Jurich.

Louisville also dismissed the NCAA’s contention that former Adidas executive James Gatto and amateur league director Merl Code represented the school while funneling illegal payments to recruits at several schools.

“The enforcement staff’s remaining allegations lack factual support and overread the relevant Bylaws,” the response stated, “and rest on the erroneous contention that the conspirators were representatives of the University’s athletics interests.

“For these reasons and others set forth, the panel should reject the enforcement staff’s dramatically overbroad theory, and classify this case as involving a Level II-Mitigated violation.”

Bubbles brewing with season on horizon

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
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INDIANAPOLIS — With the coronavirus pandemic already forcing changes for college basketball, a bubble may be brewing in Indianapolis.

Indiana Sports Corp. released a 16-page proposal Friday that calls for turning the city convention center’s exhibition halls and meeting rooms into basketball courts and locker rooms. There would be expansive safety measures and daily COVID-19 testing.

The all-inclusive price starts at $90,000 per team and would cover 20 hotel rooms per traveling party, testing, daily food vouchers ranging from $30-$50 and the cost of game officials. Sports Corp. President Ryan Vaughn said the price depends on what offerings teams or leagues choose.

“The interest has been high,” Vaughn said. “I think as conferences figure out what conference and non-conference schedules are going to look like, we’re we’re a very good option for folks. I would tell you we’ve had conversations with the power six conferences, mid-majors, it’s really kind of all over the Division I spectrum.”

Small wonder: The NCAA this week announced teams could start ramping up workouts Monday, with preseason practices set to begin Oct. 14. Season openers, however, were pushed back to Nov. 25 amid wide-ranging uncertainty about campus safety and team travel in the pandemic.

There is already scrambling going on and some of the marquee early-season tournaments have already been impacted.

The Maui Invitational will be moved from Hawaii to Asheville, North Carolina, with dates still to be determined and organizers clear that everyone involved “will be in a bubble environment that limits their movement and interaction outside the venue.” The Batttle 4 Atlantis has been canceled. The Cancun Challenge will be held in Melbourne, Florida, not Mexico.

More changes almost certainly will be coming, including what to do with the ACC-Big Ten Challenge.

“I think we’re past the guesswork on whether we play 20 conference games or more than that,” Purdue coach Matt Painter said Friday. “We’re trying to get everybody set like in terms of MTEs (multi-team events), figuring out when to play the ACC-Big Ten challenge.”

Painter, who was part of the NCAA committee that recommended how to start the season, noted part of the uncertainty stems from differing protocols imposed by campus, city and state officials.

In Indianapolis, Vaughn believes the convention center, nearby hotels, restaurants and downtown businesses, many within walking distance of the venue, could safely accommodate up to 24 teams. The 745,000-square foot facility would feature six basketball courts and two competition courts.

Anyone entering the convention center would undergo saliva-based rapid response testing, which would be sent to a third-party lab for results. Others venues could be added, too, potentially with more fans, if the case numbers decline.

If there is a taker, the event also could serve as a dry run for the 2021 Final Four, also slated for Indy.

“It’s not going to hurt,” Vaughn said. “I can tell you all the planning we’re doing right now is the same for a Final Four that’s been scheduled here for any other year. But it would be nice to have this experience under our belt to see if it can be done.”

Maui Invitational moving to North Carolina during pandemic

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
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ASHEVILLE, N.C. — The Maui Invitational is moving to the mainland during the coronavirus pandemic.

One of the premier preseason tournaments on the college basketball schedule, the Maui Invitational will be played at the Harrah’s Cherokee Center in downtown Asheville, North Carolina.

Dates for the tournament announced Friday have yet to be finalized. The NCAA announced Wednesday that the college basketball season will begin Nov. 25.

This year’s Maui Invitational field includes Alabama, Davidson, Indiana, North Carolina, Providence, Stanford, Texas and UNLV.

All teams, staff, officials, and personnel will be in a bubble environment that limits their movement and interaction outside the venue.

Burton eligible at Texas Tech after 2 seasons at Wichita State

Peter G. Aiken-USA TODAY Sports
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LUBBOCK, Texas — Junior guard Jamarius Burton has been granted a waiver from the NCAA that makes him eligible to play this season for Texas Tech after starting 52 games the past two seasons for Wichita State.

Texas Tech coach Chris Beard announced the waiver Thursday, which came five months after Burton signed with the Big 12 team.

Burton has two seasons of eligibility remaining, as well as a redshirt season he could utilize. He averaged 10.3 points and 3.4 assists per game as a sophomore at Wichita State, where he played 67 games overall.

Burton is from Charlotte. He helped lead Independence High School to a 31-1 record and the North Carolina Class 4A state championship as a senior there.

NCAA season set to open day before Thanksgiving

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The NCAA men’s and women’s basketball season will begin on Nov. 25, the day before Thanksgiving.

The Division I Council voted Wednesday to push the start date back from the originally scheduled Nov. 10 as one of several precautions against the spread of coronavirus.

The later start date coincides with the decision most schools made to send students home from Thanksgiving until January out of concern about a potential late-fall and early-winter flareup of COVID-19. Closed campuses could serve as a quasi bubble for players and provide a window for non-conference games.

The maximum number of regular-season games has been reduced from 31 to 27. The minimum number of games for consideration for the NCAA Tournament was cut from 25 to 13.

Teams can start preseason practices Oct. 14 but will be allowed to work out 12 hours per week beginning Monday.

No scrimmages against other teams or exhibitions are allowed.

In other action, the council voted to extend the recruiting dead period for all sports through Dec. 31. In-person recruiting is not allowed during a dead period, though phone calls and other correspondence are allowed.

The men’s and women’s basketball oversight committees had jointly recommended a start date of Nov. 21, which would have allowed for games to be played on the weekend before Thanksgiving. The council opted not to do that to avoid a conflict with regular-season football games.

The council is scheduled to meet again Oct. 13-14 and could delay the start date and change other pieces of the basketball framework if circumstances surrounding the virus warrant.