By Cory Mccartney
December 10, 2007
Kelvin Sampson; Jordan Crawford
A.J. Mast/Icon SMI
Indiana's Deep Impact
Eric Gordon sat. So did Armon Bassett. But despite missing its two starting guards and forward D.J. White for the last 10 minutes of the first half due to foul trouble, Indiana still manhandled Kentucky. Surprised? Maybe these Hoosiers are a little deeper than we thought. Granted, IU freshman Jordan Crawford was playing out of his noggin' in his first start with 20 points (a start which just happened to be against big brother, Joe) and the Hoosiers did get some help out of UK's lackluster performance (19 turnovers, .388 shooting). But Kelvin Sampson can't be disappointed, not with his Hoosiers leading by as many as 23 points against a Kentucky team that's better than its disappointing 4-3 start, playing at times without the team's three best players.
'Bama Surviving Without 'Man Of Steele'
Alabama has gone from SEC West contender to afterthought. Yes, 'Bama is a veteran team, but having your All-America point guard take a medical redshirt to rest his surgically repaired knees, tends to have that effect on a team. Last season, the Crimson Tide was 1-5 vs. conference opponents when Ronald Steele played less than 34 minutes and playing a full season without him means they'll rely on youth in sophomore Mikhail Torrance and freshman Rico Pickett to pick up the slack. So far, 'Bama is 19th in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.28) and had 25 dimes vs. Nicholl's State, but Steele's replacements will have to do more if this team is to make up for his absence for the long haul.
Arizona, Honor Thy Coach
The emotional strain of losing its coach for the season looked like it was going to take its toll on Arizona. The Wildcats were in trouble on the road against Illinois but clawed back to win 78-72 in overtime (and no, we're not talking about the "Did-he-or-didn't-he-timeout-call?" by the 'Cats Nic Wise). Coming just two days after Lute Olson's announcement that he is taking a leave of absence, Arizona?s comeback win was a sign of maturity for a team that has two sophomores and a freshman among its top three scorers
Texas Longhorns
The Longhorns (9-0), who are off to their best start since 1981-82, beat Rice 80-54, marking the eighth time this season Texas has won by at least 15 points. A slimmer Damion James has been a revelation for the 'Horns, recording his fourth double-double after averaging 7.6 points and 7.2 rebounds last season.
Louisville Cardinals
History will have to wait for Rick Pitino. Dayton kept Pitino from getting his 500th win, but most importantly, we again saw how much Louisville struggles without injured starters David Padgett and Juan Palacios. The Cardinals failed to find any rhythm, finishing with 15 turnovers and nine assists.
Pitt Panthers
Pitt escaped its first real road test to remain barely undefeated, but undefeated nonetheless. A potential game-winner from Washington's Justin Dentmon was disallowed after a long video review
BYU Cougars
The Cougars squandered a 10-point halftime lead against Michigan State and dropped to 1-2 against top-10 teams this season. BYU had no answer for MSU's 14-3 run to start the second half.
Texas A&M Aggies
The Aggies bounced back from their first loss in a big way. How big? The preseason NIT champs scored 109 points, had 26 assists, blocked 10 shots and outrebounded Texas State 50-37 in pushing its non-conference home win streak to 40 games.
North Carolina State
Sidney Lowe's crew hasn't been able to build on its surprising ACC tournament run. Picked to finish third in the conference, the Wolfpack lost to Michigan State, which is understandable, but New Orleans and East Carolina?
"One day in the locker room, Coach [John Thompson III] said to us that he thinks we have a chance to be 'scary good,' and I think that's what he means."
--Georgetown forward DaJuan Summers after a 87-55 win over Jacksonville in which the fast-breaking Hoyas showed they can win without a halfcourt game.
"If we had the answer, we wouldn't do it. It's our intensity level; we don't come out with the great level we need."
--UCLA swingman Josh Shipp on the deficits the Bruins have faced in their last two games. They trailed Davidson by 18 on Saturday but came back to win, a game that was on the heels of their loss to Texas, in which UCLA was down 16 in the first half.
"I'd rather have a root canal than go through this. Against most teams, you only have to guard parts of the floor. Against [Vanderbilt], you've got to guard the whole floor."
--Lipscomb coach Scott Sanderson on getting beaten by the Commodores, both inside by center A.J. Ogilvy and outside by guard Shan Foster.
Bill WalkerF - Kansas State
Last year's freshman phenom has stepped up to take the pressure off this year's model. Walker, who is still rebounding from a torn ACL, had 30 points and 10 rebounds, making up for Michael Beasley's slow first half, as Kansas State sunk Cal.
David HolstonG - Chicago State
The nation's top three-point shooter just keeps killing 'em from beyond the arc. Holston hit 8 of 14 treys, part of a 32-point performance in the Cougars' win over Jackson State. The junior is connecting on 48.9 percent of his threes this season.
Reggie WilliamsF - VMI
The Keydets' top gunner had no trouble filling the stat sheet vs. Howard. He delivered 25 points, nine assists, eight rebounds and five steals as VMI rebounded from close losses to Army and South Carolina with a 36-point win.
Grinnell College's David N. Arseneault had an NCAA-record 34 assists Saturday, breaking the Division III record of 26 set by Robert James of D-III Kean University in 1989.
48, 28
Michigan's 95-67 loss to Duke on Saturday wasn't the first blowout a John Beilein-coached team has suffered at the hands of the Blue Devils. Beilein's Canisus team fell 110-62 to Duke in 1992.
Oregon's Ernie Kent picked up his 200th win with the Ducks in Saturday's 75-64 victory over Utah, leaving him 12 behind Howard Hobson for the program's all-time record.

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