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SATURDAY’S SNACKS: Florida State, Butler earn wins; Duke, Louisville suffer injuries in wins

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Grayson Allen may have tried to trip – or kick – another player, while Oregon’s Dillon Brooks definitely kicked another player. Right in the … fellas.

Fresh off of the win over No. 1 Villanova at home, No. 18 Butler went on the road and knocked off Georgetown on Saturday with an overtime win. CBT’s Rob Dauster was at this one as he offers more here.

Make it 11 consecutive wins for No. 12 Florida State as they took down No. 21 Virginia Tech to move to 3-0 in the ACC. The Seminoles have an impressive roster that is deep and athletic. I talked more about them and this game with three takeaways here.

Playing its first game without Coach K (back surgery), No. 8 Duke was able to beat Boston College for a home ACC win. I wrote a bit more on this one and what Duke has coming up this week. Senior Amile Jefferson also hurt his foot in this one, so pay attention there.

Malik Monk, an Arkansas native, picked Kentucky over the Razorbacks. On Saturday, Arkansas visited No. 6 Kentucky. They lost, 97-71, and while Monk struggled, De’Aaron Fox went for 27 points, six boards and six assists.

After knocking off Oklahoma State at home, 61-57, No. 2 Baylor will be the No. 1 team in the country on Monday morning.

Syracuse once again went with a shortened rotation as they blew past Pitt for an easy ACC home win. I wrote more on how head coach Jim Boeheim’s move to six players could change the Orange’s NCAA tournament picture.

Postponements happened all over college basketball due to some sub-freezing weather a little farther south than usual. No. 14 North Carolina and N.C. State was the main postponement, but No. 5 Gonzaga also had to postpone their game against Portland tonight.


John Gillon, Syracuse: The senior continued to look like a point guard in ACC play with 20 points and 11 assists in a big Orange win over Pitt. Gillon was also 6-for-12 from three-point range. I have more on his performance here.

Desi Rodriguez and Angel Delgado, Seton Hall: DePaul was able to hang around with Seton Hall for most of the first half then these two took over. Rodriguez finished with 25 points and four assists on 10-for-13 shooting while Delgado had 20 points and 12 rebounds on 8-for-9 shooting.

Drew McDonald, Northern Kentucky: This sophomore forward is starting to get comfortable for the Norseman as he went for 37 points and 10 rebounds in a Horizon League win over Cleveland State. McDonald was 11-for-15 from the field and 5-for-6 from three-point range.

MiKyle McIntosh, Illinois State: Keep an eye on this junior forward (and the Redbirds) as McIntosh continued his strong start in the Valley with 31 points, six rebounds and three assists. McIntosh was 9-for-13 from the floor and 5-for-5 from three-point range.


  • After losing to Butler on Wednesday, No. 1 Villanova bounced back with a 93-81 win over Marquette.
  • Frank Mason III and Devonte’ Graham combined for 46 points as No. 3 Kansas routed Texas Tech in Allen Fieldhouse.
  • No. 7 West Virginia bounced back from its loss to Texas Tech with a home Big 12 win over TCU. Daxter Miles Jr. led four Mountaineers in double figures with 22 points.
  • Road win for No. 9 Louisville as they outlasted Georgia Tech but the Cardinals lost Deng Adel to a concussion along the way. Sophomore Donovan Mitchell continued his recent solid play with 20 points.
  • The evolution of Justin Patton continues as the freshman had 20 points and six rebounds to help lead No. 10 Creighton past Providence for a road Big East win. The Bluejays also had 11 points and 14 assists from senior point guard Mo Watson Jr.
  • No. 16 Xavier scored 54 points in the first half on the way to a blowout win over St. John’s in the Big East. Sophomore Edmond Sumner finished with 20 points, seven assists, five rebounds and three steals.
  • Allonzo Trier missed his 17th straight game, but No. 18 Arizona landed a win over Colorado, 82-73.
  • Kyle Washington led five Bearcats in double-figures as No. 22 Cincinnati knocked off Houston, 67-58.
  • V.J. Beachem played one of his best games of the season, scoring 22 points as No. 23 Notre Dame remained perfect in the ACC with a 75-70 win over Clemson.
  • KeVaughn Allen’s 23 points led No. 24 Florida past Tennessee, 83-70.
  • No. 25 Indiana snapped a three-game losing streak with a 96-80 win over Illinois.


  • Penn State earned a really good win over Michigan State in a special Big Ten game played in the Palestra. The Nittany Lions had 18 points from Lamar Stevens and 14 points from Tony Carr in the win. This should be something Penn State does every year because the atmosphere was great.
  • Kansas State took advantage of Jordan Woodard’s absence as they raced past Oklahoma for a Big 12 home win. Wesley Iwundu led five players in double-figures with 15 points for the Wildcats.
  • Georgia beat Missouri for a home SEC win as Yante Maten went for 17 points and nine rebounds. This game wasn’t really notable other than a heated confrontation between the two teams as the coaches stole the show.

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

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

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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.