Do not watch this in front of people. It is not safe to watch this at work, unless you want to be stuck making that ugly face you make when you’re trying to hold back tears. No one wants their boss to see that. Consider yourself warned.
Jared Harper might have the best poster dunk for a player under 6-feet this season.
When the No. 8 Tigers on the ropes against Xavier in the opener of the Maui Invitational, Harper made a huge play in overtime that helped ensure that Auburn would pull away with the win.
It was this:
Get used to seeing posts like this: Zion Williamson dunks making the highlight reel.
This might have been his best to date, a windmill that came off of a steal in Duke’s 90-64 win over San Diego State in the opening game of the Maui Invitational:
To really get an appreciation for this dunk, you have to look at the entirety of the picture at the top of this post. The faces … they know what they are seeing:
LAHAINA, Hawaii — R.J. Barrett scored 20 points, Cam Reddish added 16 and top-ranked Duke remained undefeated at the Maui Invitational with a 90-64 rout over San Diego State.
The Blue Devils (4-0) shot 52 percent, made 10 of 25 from 3-point range and improved to 16-0 in Maui while earning a spot in Tuesday’s semifinals against No. 8 Auburn.
Duke has been the talk of college basketball since its highly-touted freshmen shot the season out of a canon with a blowout win over then-No. 2 Kentucky. The five-time Maui champion Blue Devils arrived in paradise the favorites and played like it against the Aztecs (2-1).
Despite front-court foul trouble in the first half — Zion Williamson played seven minutes — Duke took control with an 11-0 run and led 49-32 by halftime behind Barrett’s 16 points.
The Blue Devils kept the runaway going with an early 8-0 run in the second half, building the lead to 71-46 on Williamson’s breakaway windmill dunk. Williamson had 13 points in 18 minutes.
Devin Watson had 15 points to lead San Diego State (2-1).
LAHAINA, Hawaii — Bryce Brown scored 26 points, Jared Harper added 25 and No. 8 Auburn outlasted Xavier 88-79 in overtime to open the Maui Invitational.
The Tigers (4-0) shot poorly from the perimeter early and had a hard time shaking the new-look Musketeers (2-2), missing badly on a shot to win it in regulation.
Auburn took control in the overtime behind its defense, outscoring Xavier 11-2. The Tigers scored 31 points off Xavier’s 22 turnovers overall to earn a spot in the semifinals against the Duke-San Diego State winner.
Ryan Welage had 17 points and Paul Scruggs 16 for the Musketeers.
Auburn had a five-point lead with a minute left in regulation, but Naj Marshall made a 3-pointer from the wing to pull the Musketeers within 77-75.
Xavier tied it at 77-all with 26 seconds left in regulation on Tyrique Jones’ two free throws and Brown’s last-second shot came up well short.
Two of college basketball’s bluebloods remained firmly entrenched atop the AP Top 25 after a week of easy wins, while two more tumbled all the way out after a week filled with defeats.
One of them happens to be the reigning national champion.
While top-ranked Duke and No. 2 Kansas did little to hurt their status as early national title contenders, Villanova and Syracuse slid all the way out of the Top 25 on Monday. The Wildcats lost a rematch of last year’s championship game with Michigan, then lost in overtime to Furman on Saturday to give coach Jay Wright’s team back-to-back losses for the first time in five years.
The Wildcats had risen to No. 8 last week. They were among those receiving votes this week.
“We’re trying to work out a lot of chemistry things with our team. We have a lot of new guys,” Villanova guard Phil Booth said. “We’re trying to play more together and figure things out.”
Indeed, the Wildcats are trying to replace key players Mikal Bridges, Jalen Brunson, Donte DiVincenzo and Omari Spellman after last year’s championship run. But while a strong recruiting class is trying to find its way, the Wildcats are off to a 2-2 start for the first time since 1997.
They’re also the first national champion to start 2-2 since UCLA in 1995.
The Wildcats weren’t the only big-time program to take a tumble this week. Syracuse dropped from No. 15 out of the poll after losing to Connecticut and Oregon in the 2k Classic.
“We have to play better offensively we’re going to be successful. Our defense is nowhere near the point it was last year. That’s something that also has to get better,” said Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim, whose team is 2-2 for the first time since the 1987-88 season. “There’s no doubt we have a lot of work to do. We’re a long ways away.”
The top five remained unchanged with Duke remained the clear No. 1, receiving 53 of 63 first-place votes after blowing out Eastern Michigan. Kansas was second with seven first-place votes after wins over Vermont and Louisiana-Lafayette, followed by Gonzaga, Virginia and Tennessee.
“I think in the past few days we grew up a bit more,” said Blue Devils coach Mike Krzyzewski, whose team played San Diego State in the first round of the Maui Invitational on Monday.
Gonzaga (3-0) and eighth-ranked Auburn (3-0) are also in the tournament.
“It’s a great field,” Krzyzewski said. “You’re playing three straight days, which will never happen otherwise during the season, so success or failure there has to be looked at a little bit closer. It’s a great opportunity for competition, and there are some big-time teams in the tournament, which usually there are when we’re in the tournament.”
AT THE TOP
The only major movement in the top 10 involved Villanova dropping out and Michigan (5-0) climbing from No. 18 to ninth. Nevada (3-0) remained sixth and North Carolina (4-0) seventh. Auburn moved up one spot and Kentucky (3-1) rounded out the first 10.
The Wolverines were the biggest movers, while Virginia Tech (4-0) climbed three spots to No. 13. Clemson was No. 16, followed by UCLA, TCU and LSU after each of them also moved up three spots.
Marquette joined Villanova and Syracuse in dropping from the poll after the Golden Eagles (3-1) were routed by Indiana. Oregon (3-1) dropped from No. 13 to No. 21 after splitting its games against Iowa and Syracuse in New York.
BIG TEN NEWCOMERS
Iowa (4-0) leaped into the poll at No. 20 after beating Oregon and blowing out UConn to win the 2K Classic. It’s the first time the Hawkeyes have been ranked since the final poll of the 2015-16 season.
The other newcomers this week were also from the Big Ten: Ohio State (4-0) entered at No. 23 after beating Creighton and South Carolina State, and Wisconsin squeaked in ahead of another Big Ten rival in Nebraska at No. 25 after the Badgers (3-0) took care of Xavier and Houston Baptist.