Bridgeport's Sudanese Sensation, 7'6" freshman Manute Bol (SI Dec. 10), who has averaged 21.6 points, 15.0 rebounds and an astounding 8.0 blocked shots per game while leading the Division II Purple Knights to a 16-4 record, can now chew up the opposition with even greater ease. Bol, who arrived in the United States with 15 of his teeth missing, was finally fitted with a set of false choppers, at a local free clinic.
In the first half of Bridgeport's 88-54 romp past Southern Connecticut last week, seven of Bol's 12 blocks came on seven- to 18-foot jumpers by the Owls' 5'10" guard, Jeff Buckson. Not surprisingly, Buckson, a 20.2-points-a-game scorer, eventually tried another strategy. "I forgot the jumper and went straight at him," he said. "I bellied up against him once, but when I looked up, I couldn't tell if he was smiling at me."
Southern Connecticut has the distinction of being the only team to have squared off against both the biggest and the best college centers. The Owls were routed 80-46 by Georgetown on Dec. 1. Asked to compare Bol and the Hoyas' Patrick Ewing, Buxton says, "I didn't see much of Ewing [who played a mere 20 minutes], but Georgetown's whole team intimidated me."
Before a 56-39 victory over Arkansas last Sunday snapped a two-game Hoya losing streak, Georgetown had hardly intimidated anyone of late. "Until [now] I thought maybe we were still last year's team," Georgetown coach John Thompson told Philadelphia Daily News columnist Mark Whicker after the Hoyas had lost their second straight Big East game, 65-63 at Syracuse. "But now [I know] we're not. Now we're this year's team, a different team." These Hoyas, who rely a little more on finesse and perimeter shooting and a little less on intimidation than last year's team, sputtered on offense in their losses to St. John's and Syracuse, shooting a combined 39.8%. But against the Razorbacks, Georgetown shot 42.0%, and Ewing held Joe Kleine, a teammate on the 1984 U.S. Olympic team, and the Hogs' top scorer, to a scant three points.
In Wake Forest's 91-64 ACC defeat of N.C. State, the Demon Deacons' Tyrone (Muggsy) Bogues showed that the littlest guy on the floor—he's 5'3"—can do some very big things. In his best performance as a Deacon, Bogues scored a career-high 20 points and had 10 assists and four steals. Wolfpack coach Jim Valvano was not punning when he said of Bogues, "He was nothing short of spectacular."
Before Georgia's game at LSU, Cedric Henderson, the freshman forward who has become the focal point of an NCAA investigation, warmed up in teammate Dwayne (Bam-Bam) Rainey's sweat suit to shield himself from possible taunts from the 12,790 Tiger fans. Ultimately, Henderson silenced the crowd. His five-foot turnaround jumper at the buzzer gave the Dawgs a 59-58 win, snapping the Bengals' 18-game home winning streak. LSU's own heralded freshman, forward John Williams, made Henderson's heroics possible. Inbounding the ball under Georgia's basket with one second left, Williams heaved a pass that traveled the length of the court untouched. That gave the Bulldogs the ball and Henderson the chance to get that basket.
The results of the Southwestern Athletic Conference audit of Southern University's statistics (SI, Feb. 4) are in. Doniven Hoskins, who had been listed two weeks ago as the nation's top field-goal shooter, was incorrectly credited with 17 more field goals and 24 fewer attempts than he'd actually had. Thus, Hoskins's percentage fell from an astounding 78.9% to a merely decent 49.6%.
The audit was kinder to Hoskins's teammates Glenn Dedmon and John Staves, whose corrected percentages fell from 72.5% and 69.2%, respectively, to 60.0% and 65.9%. NCAA statistical coordinator Jim Wright's explanation for Southern's inaccuracies: lousy math.
Tulsa, which had lost its last three games with Drake in Des Moines' Veterans Memorial Auditorium, escaped with a 67-66 win. "It's downright cold in this place," said Golden Hurricane coach Nolan Richardson. "Put us in a hot gym and let us start running, and that's when we're at our best." Tulsa found plenty of heat in Indiana State's Hulman Center. Unfortunately for the Hurricane, it was Sycamore forward John Sherman Williams who was on fire. Williams scored 31 points in Indiana State's 100-94 victory, which ended Tulsa's 14-game winning streak.
While Iowa moved into a tie with Michigan for first place in the Big Ten with a 67-58 win at Ohio State, the Hawkeye women, second in the conference, packed them in at home. Really packed them in. Indeed, the crowd for the Lady Hawks' showdown with the first-place Buckeye women in Iowa City was so large that some fans stood seven-deep around the balcony of Carver Hawkeye Arena, while others sat in the aisles for a time. That's what happens when 22,157 fans, an NCAA women's attendance record, are shoehorned into a 15,450-seat arena. Alas, Ohio State prevailed 56-47. "Hey, only one miracle can be accomplished in one day," said Rick Klatt, Iowa's women's sports information director.
Kansas coach Larry Brown is singing a favorite song again. Brown told the Lawrence Journal-World that his players don't care for one another, either on the court or away from it. He says he came to this conclusion after observing, among other things, their lack of etiquette. "We'll have Cokes for the guys," says Brown, "and one guy'll take three and there's never a thank-you. This team has been the most uncomfortable experience for me. Every day is a struggle; you have to be negative and spend halftime telling them to play together."
Notre Dame coach Digger Phelps has had more victories over UCLA in Pauley Pavilion than any other visiting coach, and he'd like some recognition for them. "With those [10 NCAA championship] pennants they've got in Pauley Pavilion, how about a big shamrock for our four wins?" Phelps asked Sam Gilbert, the longtime No. 1 booster of Bruin basketball, last week. After the Fighting Irish hung on Sunday to beat the Bruins 53-52 for a fifth Phelps victory, Digger, mixing his metaphors, quipped, "There's another notch on the shamrock." It was UCLA's second one-point loss to a big rival in three nights. The first, a 78-77 double-overtime defeat by USC, allowed the Trojans to share (with Oregon State) the Pac-10 lead.
Nobody enjoyed Southern Methodist's 85-78 victory over Houston more than 7-foot center Jon Koncak. The Mustangs hadn't beaten the Cougars since 1982, and Koncak had been frustrated by Houston's Akeem Abdul Olajuwan. With the Dream now in the NBA, Koncak ripped the Cougars for 27 points and 21 rebounds. "It was kind of fun, not having Olajuwon out there," said Koncak. "I don't mind at all when those guys move on and make millions."
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
JIM McCAFFREY: The 6'1" Holy Cross junior guard scored 77 points on 28 of 39 shooting, hit 21 of 26 free throws and had 21 assists in the Crusaders' wins over Iona (102-85) and Fairfield (79-71).
SI TOP 20
1. ST. JOHN'S (17-1)
2. MEMPHIS STATE (17-1)
3. GEORGETOWN (19-2)
4. OKLAHOMA (17-4)
5. SMU (18-2)
6. DUKE (15-3)
7. GEORGIA TECH (16-4)
8. MICHIGAN (16-3)
9. SYRACUSE (15-3)
10. LA. TECH (17-2)
11. DEPAUL (14-5)
12. ILLINOIS (18-5)
13. IOWA (18-4)
14. TULSA (17-3)
15. KANSAS (17-4)
16. UNLV (17-2)
17. N. CAROLINA (16-5)
18. OREGON STATE (16-3)
19. UAB (19-5)
20. VCU (16-3)