News, Notes, and Highlighted Games: Thursday, Jan 25th


-For our latest Under the Radar Video Podcast – CLICK HERE

-For Chad Sherwood’s UTR Game of the Day, which features a red hot Louisiana team – CLICK HERE

-Auburn at Mizzou was a great game for about 30 minutes, and an absolute blowout for the last ten.  Auburn just blew Mizzou’s doors off.  It was one of the most impressive ten minute stretches I’ve seen out of any SEC team this year.  This Auburn team is for real.

-Also in the SEC, South Carolina picked up another really nice and much needed win as they knocked off Florida on the road.  Florida is rather schizophrenic this season.  They were so excited about their big win against Kentucky and getting back into the rankings that they lost to what amounts to a bubble team at home.  But, look out for the Gamecocks.  They’ve now won four out of six, and in that stretch they’ve beaten Kentucky, Georgia on the road, and now Florida on the road.

-Not only is Xavier continuing their hot stretch of play since a 2-game losing streak at Providence at Villanova, they are looking like they can legitimately challenge Villanova for the Big East crown after beating Marquette at home with little difficulty. Trevon Bluiett became the 5th player in Xavier history to reach the 2,000 point mark. As for Villanova, they revealed yesterday that Phil Booth broke a bone in his hand in their win over Providence on Tuesday night. His return for the remainder of the season is doubtful at the moment.

-It was the middle of the night in the east, but if you missed it then you need to go back and watch Wyoming’s double overtime win against a Nevada team that had just gotten into the rankings.  The game included a controversial no-call at the end of regulation, and a couple of lead changes in the final minute of the first overtime.  It doesn’t derail Nevada by any means.  I still think they’ll end up in the top half of the bracket.  It was just an exciting and emotional game that would have helped them continue to climb the rankings.

-Louisville and Miami FL also played in an overtime thriller in a game that saw several lead changes down the stretch.  The Canes held on to get one of their better wins of the season.  The win could have really helped Louisville, but the loss doesn’t really hurt them and they’re still in good shape overall.

-USC continues to roll as they pick up another conference win and improve to 7-2 in Pac Twelve play.

-And lest we forget, today is the 30th anniversary of more of the legendary dunks and calls you will ever see on TV:



-MICHIGAN AT PURDUE (Big Ten).  I really like this Michigan team, and while I like Purdue a lot more I don’t think they’re quite as good as the other teams we’re looking at for #1 seeds.  Having said that, I still think Purdue is better and since they’re at home I don’t see them dropping this one.

-SMU AT UCONN (American).  SMU is right on the bubble with a very small margin for error.  Two years ago this would have been a preposterous statement, but they need to hold serve and win at UConn because they don’t need a bad loss on their resume.

-UTSA AT MIDDLE TENNESSEE (Conference USA).  In order for Middle to have any chance at all at an at-large bid they need to hold serve the rest of the way.

-PENN STATE AT OHIO STATE (Big Ten).  Ohio State appears to be playing as well as anyone in the country right now and shouldn’t have too much trouble at home against a very NIT-ish (if that) Penn State team.

-COLORADO AT ARIZONA (Pac Twelve).  Many people are still soured on Arizona (at least in regards to being a Final Four contender), but outside of one really bad week in the Bahamas they are 16-1 on the season and they’re coming off a big road win against a Stanford team that was red hot.  The one game that they did lose was to this Colorado team.  That was at Colorado.  Tonight may be a very different story.

-UCF AT WICHITA STATE (American).  This is an important game for Wichita not so much because of how it will boost their profile, but because they are coming off of back to back losses and need to rebound.  UCF is most likely an NIT team, but they do have a pulse and Wichita can’t just sleepwalk through this one.

-UTAH AT ARIZONA STATE (Pac Twelve).  Arizona State’s overall profile is solid, but they are just 3-4 in the Pac Twelve, and the Pac Twelve isn’t exactly Murderer’s Row this year.  This is a winnable home game that Arizona State needs to win.

-CALIFORNIA AT UCLA (Pac Twelve).  UCLA is right on our bubble and needs to take care of business in what amounts to a buy game tonight.

-GONZAGA AT PORTLAND (West Coast).  It’s seemingly always the same story with Gonzaga.  They need to hold serve and if they do they should skate into the top half of the bracket.

-BYU AT SAINT MARY’S (West Coast).  SMC now appears to be safely inside the bubble and will stay there as long as they hold serve.  BYU’s very faint tournament chances will become a little less faint if they’re somehow able to win this one.

-CAL BAPTIST AT AZUSA PACIFIC (Pac West, Team of the People). Your Cal Baptist Lancers have their most difficult challenge of the regular season tonight as they look to complete a season sweep against one of the Pac West co-leaders.

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