By Cory Mccartney
January 28, 2008
Eddie Sutton
Don't Call It A Comeback
Is it really worth it Eddie Sutton?'s Luke Winn called Bobby Knight's crawl to 900 wins at Texas Tech "nothing truly inspirational" but it's becoming increasingly clear we might want to throw that label Sutton's way. So far his staving off retirement to pursue 800 victories at San Francisco is a display that's like watching a step-too-slow Magic Johnson's ill-advised comeback attempt in 1996. Sutton's Dons are 1-6 since he took over, including Saturday's 22-point loss to Saint Mary's. He sits at 799 career wins and the 71-year-old is sure to get No. 800 with 10 more tries this season. But we're talking about a two-time national coach of the year who has a court named after him at Oklahoma State. Sutton's legacy is cemented and this sad attempt, even though he's trying to cast aside the specter of his alcohol-related retirement from OSU, reeks of a man simply chasing a number and it's not doing him justice.
Were The Hoosiers Exposed?
Eric Gordon struggled. D.J. White was off his game. Indiana's 29-game home winning streak came crashing down as a shorthanded UConn squad beat the No. 7 Hoosiers 68-63 Saturday. So is this the part of the conversation where we start talking about how Indiana was exposed after playing just six winning teams in its first 18 games? Not exactly. Come on, how often are Gordon and White (who combined to miss 19 shots) going to both have subpar games? Consider this a learning experience for the Hoosiers, who were simply outmuscled by UConn, which outscored IU 34-16 in the paint and won the rebounding margin 44-28.
Donovan's Young Gators Have Bite
Remember Florida, the two-time defending champions, the team that lost six of its top players, including three first-round draft picks? The secret is out on Florida's baby Gators, whether Billy Donovan likes it or not. Granted, it was a bad start for Vanderbilt on Sunday and an opening half from the Gators we can't expect on a consistent basis (they led 34-6 in the first 12 minutes) but Sunday's never-even-close 86-64 win over the No. 14 Commodores was a defining win for a team with two sophomores and two freshmen in its starting lineup.
Rutgers Scarlet Knights
"It's a miracle," guard J.R. Inman said after the Scarlet Knights' stunning win over 13th-ranked Pitt. But he could have been talking about the entire week. Rutgers came into last week on a six-game losing skid but pulled two Top 25 upsets, beating Villanova and Pitt for its first Big East wins of the season.
Wisconsin Badgers
Wisconsin's 10-game winning streak and unbeaten Big Ten run both came to a screeching halt at Purdue. Credit the Badgers for fighting through rough shooting (38.5 percent) to even have a chance to win late, but Matt Painter caught on to UW's persistent use of ball-screens and the Badgers went to it one time too many.
Notre Dame Fighting Irish
The third time was indeed the charm for the Irish, which lost at Marquette by 26 points and at Georgetown by 19 (the two most lopsided defeats in Mike Brey's eight seasons in South Bend) in the Irish's first two Big East road games this season. Notre Dame finally broke through Saturday, winning at Villanova 60-50.
Arizona State Sun Devils
If the Sun Devils' latest performance wasn't enough to drop Washington State (the Sun Devils lost their third straight, 56-55 to the Cougars) the Wells Fargo Center fans made it all too easy tossing water bottles and debris after the loss, hitting some Wazzu players. Come on, Pitchfork Nation. I thought you were better than that.
USC Trojans
Add another tough road win to the Trojans' comeback. USC blew a nine-point lead but took control in overtime to win at Oregon 95-86 for its fourth straight win, all coming in Pac-10 play. If you were expecting O.J. Mayo to be burdened by his NCAA rules violation he surely wasn't, scoring 25 points in the victory.
Dayton Flyers
What in the name of Rudy Flyer is going on in the Birthplace of Aviation? The Flyers lost their third straight 80-63 to Richmond on Saturday as the Spiders took advantage of an ailing Brian Roberts, who had three early turnovers and went nearly 15 minutes without scoring, and the absence of injured starting forward Chris Wright and reserve Charles Little.
"We wanted to give them the Michael Jordan treatment. That's what we do with great players."
--Michigan State coach Tom Izzo on Michigan's Manny Harris and DeShawn Sims, who scored 17 combined points (13 off their season average) in a 77-62 loss.
"You almost have to be perfect in here, and that's a little hard to pull off."
--Gonzaga coach Mark Few, whose Bulldogs lost 81-73 to top ranked Memphis in the FedExForum on Saturday. The Tigers stayed undefeated at 19-0 and pushed the nation's best home winning streak to 43 games.
"Ugly or not, it's a win. Road wins have been few and far between as you look across the conference."
--Georgetown coach John Thompson III, whose Hoyas escaped Morgantown with a 58-57 win as Patrick Ewing Jr. swatted away a Da'Sean Butler last-gasp shot attempt.
Michael BeasleyF - Kansas State
Simply put, Beasley was beastly against Iowa State. The freshman sensation scored 33 points in 22 minutes and pulled down 15 rebounds in the Wildcats' 82-57 win Saturday. Seriously, could we ask for a better warmup leading into Wednesday's showdown with undefeated Kansas?
Ramel BradleyG - Kentucky
Bradley may not want to dwell on his recent play. "I'm on a roll. Let's not talk about it too much," he told reporters after Saturday's 78-70 win over South Carolina. Well if he won't, the Fast Break will. He went for more than 20 points for the seventh time in eight games, finishing with 26 points, 10 rebounds and four assists.
Darren CollisonG - UCLA
Now this is the Collison that Bruins fans were hoping to see when he returned for his junior year. He seems to have hit his stride after sitting out six games because of a sprained left knee. He scored a career-high 33 points in the Bruins' 85-62 win at Oregon State.
Texas coach Rick Barnes' record against Bobby Knight. On Saturday, Barnes' Longhorns gave Knight's Texas Tech team one to forget as UT handed the Red Raiders a 74-47 defeat.
Number of blocks freshman Lester Prosper had in Division III SUNY-Old Westbury's 73-71 win over Mount St. Mary's. He was four blocks away from the D-III record of Lincoln's John Bunch set in '04.
Pairs of shoes IUPUI coach Ron Hunter collected to benefit Samaritan's Feet, which donates shoes to those who cannot afford them. Hunter, who coached barefoot in a win over Oakland last week, had hoped to collect 40,000 pairs but he ended up with more than 100,000 in donations.

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