Scoreboard Watching: November 30, 2016

Bracketology Scoreboard Watching

In the books

Wisconsin 77, Syracuse 60:  Ethan Happ lead the Badgers with 24 points on 10-12 shooting to go with 13 rebounds and 4 assist, while Syracuse shot 6-23 from 3 in a game that was never really close.   Wisconsin hosts Oklahoma on Saturday while the 'Cuse hope to right the ship against North Florida and UConn in the next week.
 
VCU 81, Princeton 70: The Tigers remain heavy favorites to win the Ivy League, but don't look to be the danger that sometimes Ivy League teams can be come March at 2-3 and without a win against a KenPom Top 300 team.    Meanwhile, the Rams improve to 2-1 against the KenPom Top 100 heading into Saturday's showdown with Illinois in Miami.
 
Pitt 73, Maryland 59: The Terps fall for the first time this season against a not-very deep Pitt team that only saw one bench player break 10 minutes, but still shot 20-36 on 2-PT FG.  Maryland hosts Oklahoma St on Saturday.
 
Illinois 88, NC State 74: The Illini show a sign of life for the first time this season, and its bad news for an NC State Team in bad news of a good non-conference win, which they likely won't get now with the loss and no KenPom Top 100 teams remaining on their OOC schedule.
 
Valpo 65, Rhode Island 62:  The Crusaders make the most of their home game against a decent opponent, topping Rhode Island in their biggest win of the season.  Next up?  A road trip to Lexington next Wednesday.
 
Duke 78, Michigan St 69: Miles Bridges looks much more freshman than phenom for the Spartans right now.  They'll grow and change as the season goes one (one would expect), but right now this young MSU team is battling injury and struggling.  Duke, who is also battling injuries, is not struggling.  Which is scary when you think of the amount of talent currently wearing street clothes on their bench..

Tipping Off Today

North Carolina at Indiana: One of the non-conference's most intriguing games as UNC enters fresh off a Maui Invitational title while Indiana owns one of the season's best wins (Kansas) and worst losses (Fort Wayne).
 
Purdue at Louisville: After they couldn't hold on against Villanova at home, the Boilermakers would love to pick up a quality road win against Louisville's national-leading defense.
 
Virgina Tech at Michigan: Which Michigan team will show up?  The one with dominant big men that looked so good in NYC, or the team that looked flat at South Carolina.
 
Saint Mary's at Stanford: The Gaels enter 5-0 with 3 wins against KenPom Top 100 opponents.  A road win over their NoCal foes would help send a message to the committee that they're not your normal mid-major.
 
Ohio St at Virginia: The Cavs are coming off a dominant performance at the Emerald Coast Classic over Iowa and Providence, but face what may be their toughest stretch of non-conference season with OSU and West Virginia this week.

Scoreboard Watching: November 29, 2016

Bracketology Scoreboard Watching

In the books

Butler 68, Utah 59: The Bulldogs continue to roll through their non-conference slate.  They get a couple of tune-up games before starting a stretch run that sees all but one opponent ranked outside the KenPom Top 100.  Utah has a weak non-conference schedule and now looks to the road trip to Xavier for a chance at a solid win before season's end.
 
Northwestern 65, Wake Forest 58: The Wildcats pick up a quality win at home and are in position to play for a tournament berth come if they can hold serve until Big Ten play.
 
Florida St 75, Minnesota 67: The Seminoles never really looked in trouble as Jonahthon Issac lead the way with a double-double as the Noles roll despite shooting 2-16 from beyond the arc.
 
Kentucky 115, Arizona St 69: Kentucky's freshman backcourt duo of De'Aaron Fox and Malik Monk look like they've been playing together for years.  This year's Wildcat team is legit, but face their toughest test thus far when UCLA comes to town on Saturday.

Tipping Off Today

Syracuse at Wisconsin: A battle of KenPom Top 10 teams, Syracuse looks to bounce back from Saturday's loss to South Carolina in what will be a slow paced, methodical game.  The 'Cuse lead the nation in effective FG% defense at 36.5%.
 
Michigan St at Duke: Can the Spartans begin to look like the team many expected them to be?  The Blue Devils may be too much too soon for an MSU team that is still trying to find itself.
 
Rhode Island at Valpo: The Crusaders begin a two game stretch against a good Rhode Island team at home followed by a road trip to Lexington next week, while the Rams start a stretch of 4 games against KenPom Top 100 teams, three of which are on the road.
 
Pitt at Maryland:  The Terps are coming off a good weekend and are 7-0 on the year with 3 wins against the KenPom Top 100.

Scoreboard Watching: November 28, 2016

Bracketology Scoreboard Watching

In the books

Maui Invitational
Title game - North Carolina 71, Wisconsin 56: UNC rolls to the Maui Invitational Crown and is in the conversation for the top overall seed at this point.
3rd place game - Oklahoma St 97 Georgetown 70: After an opening win over Oregon, the Hoyas continue to look troubled in their next two losses, as their defense was nowhere to be found in this one.
5th place game - Oregon 79, UConn 69: Two teams that have be dissapointing so far this season, but nobody moreso than the Huskies, who fall to 1-4 vs Division 1 competition, and 0-4 against the KenPom Top 210.
7th place game - Tennessee 95, Chaminade 81: The Vols get the gimme to salavage a win.  It's going to be a long season in Knoxville.
 
Battle 4 Atlantis
1st - Baylor: The Bears are the biggest risers in college basketball after I had them as a 7 seed to start the year.  A top 2 seed seems reasonable at this point of the season.
2nd - Louisville: The Cards dropped a huge lead to Bayor in the second half to drop the tournament title.
3rd - Michigan St: The Spartans have looked pretty rough in their 4-3 start heading into Duke this week.  Then it's a stretch of get-right games before Big Ten season, when they tend to do their damage.
4th - Wichita St  The Shockers are still looking for a win over KenPom Top 100 team.
5th - VCU: The Rams bounce back as expected following their opening round loss to Baylor
6th - LSU, 7th - Old Dominion, 8th - St. John's
 
AdvoCare Invitational
1st - Gonzaga: The Bulldogs edged Florida (in Orlando) and Iowa State on to close out an impressive run.
2nd - Iowa St: Steve Prohm's squad handled Miami in the semis easily before bowing out to the 'Zaga in the titel game.
3rd - Florida: The Gators had to be disappointed to not reach the final after controlling much of the game early against Gonzaga, but bounced back with a nice win over Miami to take 3rd place.
4th - Miami: An opening round win against Stanford was nice, but losses to Iowa St and Florida sting with not many more non-conference test remaining.
5th - Stanford: The Cardinal notched a nice win over Seton Hall to save the weekend.
6th - Seton Hall: Tough weekend for the Pirates, who drop two out of three after an impressive road win over Iowa last week.  
7th - Quinnipiac, 8th - Indiana St
 
Continental Tires Las Vegas Invitational
1st - Butler: The Bulldogs came back late to beat Arizona to improve to 6-0 on the season, including 3 wins over KenPom Top 75 teams.  The top of the Big East is VERY strong, with Butler joining Villanova, Creighton and Xavier as teams on hot starts.
2nd - Arizona: The Wildcats drop of a tough one and now look ahead to next Saturday's showdown against Arizona at the Staples Center as their next chance at a marquee non-conference win.
3rd - Vanderbilt, 4th - Santa Clara
 
NIT Season Tip-Off
1st - Temple: After two terrible losses in their first three games to New Hampshire and UMass, the Owls storm back with great wins over Florida St and West Virginia in NYC
2nd - West Virginia: The Mountaineers expected to go 2-0 this weekend and have the be disappointed with second.  A showdown with Virginia looms next Saturday.
3rd - Florida St: Remember when the Noles played amazing defense and were painful to watch on offense?  Not anymore.  FSU's is stocked with young talent, but needs to play well on both ends of the floor to turn the corner.
4th - Illinois: The Illinois are 0-3 against the KenPom Top 125 and need to improve in upcoming games against NC State and VCU if they want to turn around this disappointing start to the season.
 
Emerald Coast Classic
1st - Virginia: Tony Bennett's team didn't seem to miss recently dismissed Austin Nichols at all this weekend, cruising to an easy tournament crown.
2nd - Providence: A nice win over Memphis on Friday, but the Friars were no match for UVA.
3rd - Memphis: The Tigers bounced back on Saturday to drop 100 points on Iowa for 3rd place.
4th - Iowa: 3-3 with no wins over the KenPom Top 300, Iowa needs a quick turnaround.
 
Barclays Center Classic
1st - Maryland: The Terps are 7-0 with 3 wins against the KenPom Top 100.  Solid week ahead with home games against Pitt and Oklahoma St.
2nd - Kansas St: The toughest thing about the Wildcats' one-point loss to Maryland? It's their only game against  KenPom Top 150 team out of conference.  They needed the win.
3rd - Richmond, 4th - Boston College
 
Wooden Legacy
1st - UCLA: The Bruins pick up wins over Nebrask and Texas A&M to climb to 7-0.  They face Kentucky, Michigan and Ohio State in three of their next 5 games.
2nd - Texas A&M: Disappointing start to the season with losses to both LA schools.  The win over Va Tech could prove helpful, however.
3rd - Virginia Tech: The Hokies Were a solid 2-1 on the weekend with wins over New Mexico and Nebraska.  A road trip to Ann Arbor awaits on Wednesday. 
4th - Nebraska: The Huskers surprised Dayton in the opener, but dropped their next to to fall to 4-2 on the year.
5th - Dayton: Speaking of the Flyers, they bounced back nicely after their opening round loss, beating New Mexico for 5th place.
6th - New Mexico, 7th - Portland - 8th - Cal State Northridge
 
Other games
South Carolina 61, Michigan 46:  As good as the Wolverines looked in New York, they looked just as bad in Columbia.  The Gamecocks defense was smothering and took Michigan out of rythm from start to finish.
South Carolina 64, Syracuse 50: That's right, it was a great weekend for South Carolina, as they followed up the above win with a another lopsided win, this time in Syracuse's other home of NYC.
USC 96, SMU 72: The Trojans are picking up quality wins at 6-0, controlling SMU at home.  Not tough tough a road remains before Pac-12 play.
 
Hall of Fame Classic:
Kansas 65, Georgia 54: The Jayhawks took control late in the first half and cruised home for the win. Yante Maten scored 30 in a losing effort for the Bulldogs. 
 
Maui Invitational
Wisconsin 73, Georgetown 57: The Badgers ride a big second half to punch a ticket to the title game.
North Carolina 107, Oklahoma St 75: The Tar Heels easily crush their first real opponent of the season and will face Wisconsin today. 
Oregon 69, Tennessee 65 (OT): The conventional wisdom was that once the Ducks got Dillon Brooks back from injury, they'd be a new team.  So far, not so much.  After dropping their Maui opener to Georgetown, they needed overtime to get by a Tennessee team that hasn't showed much life so far this season.
UConn 93, Chaminade 82: Man, UConn may have won this one, but giving up 82 to a Division II team doesn't to anything to calm nerves about the Huskies problems.
 
Maui Invitational
Georgetown 65, Oregon 61: Fresh off a home loss to Arkansas State(!), the Hoyas turn around and upend Oregon, giving the Ducks their second upset loss of the early season.
Oklahoma St 98, UConn 90: Don't be fooled by the final, UConn looked awful for the vast majority of this game.  Kevin Ollie's team needs to improve in a hurry if they want to avoid a bottom finish in Maui.
Wisconsin 74, Tennessee 62: The Badgers hope t keep momentum rolling to erase the stigma from last week's loss at Creighton.
 
Minnesota 85, Arkansas 71: The Razorbacks turned the ball over 21 times on 78 possessions, never really threatening the Gophers who pass their first test of the season easily.

Tipping Off Today

Butler vs Utah:  The Bulldogs look to keep their hot streak rolling in their first road game of the year.
Wake Forest vs Northwestern: The Wildcats have looked dangous, playing well in their 3-2 start to the season. Meanwhile, Wake Forest has had only one quality opponent this season in Villanova.  Those Wildcats ran the Deacons off the court to the tune of 96-77.
Minnesota at Florida St: The Seminoles face their first test at home of the year.  Can Jonathan Isaac lead them to the win?
Kentucky vs Arizona St:  The Sun Devils are 0-2 against the KenPom Top 100 so far this season.  It's hard to see them hanging with an edition of a Kentucky team that looks ready to live up to their hype.
 

Scoreboard Watching: November 23, 2014

Bracketology Scoreboard Watching

In the books

BEST WIN OF THE NIGHT - Fort Wayne 71, Indiana 68: This game may have been played on IPFW's home court, but it was a hostile environment for the "home" team as the IU faithful showed out for what they expected to be an easy win.  Instead, the Hoosiers - fresh off a #1 rating in ESPN's Power Rankings and an 82% favorite to win by KenPom - fell to Byson Scott and the Mastadons in one of the season's biggest upsets thus far.
 
Other games of interest...
 
Legend's Classic
Notre Dame 70, Northwestern 66: The Wildcats drop their second game in the final moments in just over a week, after losing on a last second shot at Butler. 
Colorado 68, Texas 54: The Longhorn's finish in a very disappointing last place in a tournament they were expected to win coming in.   They'll need to turn things around soon, with very few cupcakes on their schedule the rest of the way.
 
Hall of Fame Classic:
Kansas 65, Georgia 54: The Jayhawks took control late in the first half and cruised home for the win. Yante Maten scored 30 in a losing effort for the Bulldogs. 
 
Maui Invitational
Wisconsin 73, Georgetown 57: The Badgers ride a big second half to punch a ticket to the title game.
North Carolina 107, Oklahoma St 75: The Tar Heels easily crush their first real opponent of the season and will face Wisconsin today. 
Oregon 69, Tennessee 65 (OT): The conventional wisdom was that once the Ducks got Dillon Brooks back from injury, they'd be a new team.  So far, not so much.  After dropping their Maui opener to Georgetown, they needed overtime to get by a Tennessee team that hasn't showed much life so far this season.
UConn 93, Chaminade 82: Man, UConn may have won this one, but giving up 82 to a Division II team doesn't to anything to calm nerves about the Huskies problems.
 
Maui Invitational
Georgetown 65, Oregon 61: Fresh off a home loss to Arkansas State(!), the Hoyas turn around and upend Oregon, giving the Ducks their second upset loss of the early season.
Oklahoma St 98, UConn 90: Don't be fooled by the final, UConn looked awful for the vast majority of this game.  Kevin Ollie's team needs to improve in a hurry if they want to avoid a bottom finish in Maui.
Wisconsin 74, Tennessee 62: The Badgers hope t keep momentum rolling to erase the stigma from last week's loss at Creighton.
 
Minnesota 85, Arkansas 71: The Razorbacks turned the ball over 21 times on 78 possessions, never really threatening the Gophers who pass their first test of the season easily.

Tipping Off Today

Game of the Day - Maui Invitational Championship Game, Wisconsin vs North Carolina -  It's the title game we were hoping for coming in.  The Tar Heels have cruised through some decent tests so far, while Wisconsin knows a Maui title will erase the road loss to a Creighton team that looks very good themselves.
 
Other games of interest
Maui Invitational
Georgetown vs Oklahoma St:  Georgetown continues to be a mystery - balancing an impressive win (Oregon) against a trio of unimpressive losses so far.  Can they salvage a 3rd place finish in Maui?
Oregon vs UConn: Two teams dealing with some of college basketball's most disappointing starts this season look to leave Maui with a win.  Oregon is hoping health will help them turn the corner, while the Huskies hope to simply show a pulse for the first time this season.
 
Battle 4 Atlantis
VCU vs Baylor: Baylor hopes to keep building on the momentum of their blowout win at home over Oregon.
St John's vs Michigan St: While freshman Miles Bridges looks as good as hyped, the rest of the team does not.  The Spartans needed a home-cooked game clock to beat FGCU at home on Sunday, but hope this trip is the fresh start they badly need.
LSU vs Wichita St: Both teams have cruised through cupcakes before a gauntlet of a weekend at Atlantis.
Louisville vs Old Dominion: The Cardinals defense has been suffocating so far this season, second in defensive efficiency and first in block percentage.  They should cruise this this opening round match-up.
 
Michigan vs South Carolina: Behind a vastly improved defense, the Wolverines have looked fanastic so far, but now face their first road game of the young season.
 

Scoreboard Watching: November 22, 2016

Bracketology Scoreboard Watching

In the books

BEST WIN OF THE NIGHT - Northwestern 77, Texas 58: Less than a week after falling to Butler on a last-second shot, the Wildcats looked even better, controlling a nationally-ranked Longhorns team on a neutral court.
Other games of interest...
Maui Invitational
Georgetown 65, Oregon 61: Fresh off a home loss to Arkansas State(!), the Hoyas turn around and upend Oregon, giving the Ducks their second upset loss of the early season.
Oklahoma St 98, UConn 90: Don't be fooled by the final, UConn looked awful for the vast majority of this game.  Kevin Ollie's team needs to improve in a hurry if they want to avoid a bottom finish in Maui.
Wisconsin 74, Tennessee 62: The Badgers hope t keep momentum rolling to erase the stigma from last week's loss at Creighton.
 Paradise Jam
Championship
Creighton 86, Ole Miss 77:  Creighton improved defensively in the second half to eventually pull away from an Ole Miss team that controlled the first half.
3rd Place Game
NC State 73, Saint Joe's 63: The Wolfpack bounce back from Sunday's semi-final loss to Creighton to take an expected win.
Legands Classic
Notre Dame 89, Colorado 83:  It was the first real test of the season for both teams, with the Irish taking the early lead and never really looking back.
Valpo 68, Alabama 60: The Crusaders are 3-1 aganst D-1 competition and now have a respectable win to add to their resume.  They'll play BYU tomorrow in Vegas.
San Diego st 77, California 65: The Aztechs begin their climb back up after getting whopped by Gonzaga a week ago.
TCU 80, Illinois St 71: The Jamie Dixon era passes its first test of the season, but it wasn't until the horned frogs took control late that the win felt safe.

>Tipping Off Today

Game of the Day: Notre Dame vs Northwestern: The Wildcats look like a team ready to trade punches with the big boys, routing a Texas team yesterday in Brooklyn.  Can they follow that with a win over Notre Dame to take the Legends Classic crown?
Other games of interest
Maui Invitational
Wisconsin vs Georgetown:  So, what is the real Hoyas team?  The one that lost to Arkansas St and Maryland at home, or the team that upset Oregon on Monday?  Wisconsin will prove a good test to see if the Hoyas are ready to turn the corner just yet.
Oklahoma St vs North Carolina: The Cowboys cruised through much of their opening round game against UConn, but UNC poses an entirely different test.
Tennessee vs Oregon: The Ducks have dropped a couple of head-scratchers, but should cruise to a win in this losers' bracket contest.
Arkansas St at Minnesota: Both teams have passed mediocre tests so far in a bit of an early measuring stick game.
Legends Classic - 3rd Place Game
Colorado vs Texas: Can the Longhorns bounce back from Monday's blowout loss to NU?

Scoreboard Watching: November 21, 2016

Bracketology Scoreboard Watching

In the books

Hall of Fame Tip-Off
Semi-Finals (Saturday)
Rhode Island 76, Cincinnati 71: Kyle Washington's double-double let the Rams as they pick up a nice win and a chance to take on Duke.
Duke 78, Penn State 68: The Blue Devils shake off any rust left from Tuesday's loss to Kansas and cruise to the win.
Championship
Duke 75, Rhode Island 65: Off the 200 available minutes to play, Duke only logged 12 minutes from their bench as they continue to win short-handed and injury riddled.
 
Tire Pros Invitational
Championship
Xavier 67, Northern Iowa 59: After a competitive first have, the Muskateers pulled away early in the second and hung on late to take this tournament title at Disney.
3rd Place Game
Oklahoma 70, Clemson 64: The Sooners shake off their semi-final loss to Northern Iowa to beat a competive Clemson squad.
 
Paradise Jam
Semifinals
Creighton 112, NC State 94:  Creighton's top-10 offense strikes again, topping 100 points for the second straight game.  
Ole Miss 81, Saint Joe's 68: Sebastian Saiz's double-double lifted the Rebels to a win.
 
Michigan State 78, Florida Gulf Coast 77: The Spartans escape what would have been a disasterous home loss with some home cookin'.  FGCU had the ball under the opposite basket, threw a court long pass only for the clock to start when the ball was thrown.  The Eagles missed the game winning shot, which was forced up with the buzzer blaring early and officials not forcing a re-do of the play.  An amazing stew of incompetence.  The loss would have dropped State to 1-3 on the season heading into the Battle 4 Atlantis.

Tipping Off Today

Legends Classic
Notre Dame vs Colorado: Neither team has been tested so far, each playing teams ranked 200+ by KenPom so far.  
Texas vs Northwestern: The Wildcats nearly pulled the road upset over Butler earlier this week.  Can they turn the corner in Brooklyn and steal this tournament?
 
Maui Invitational
Tennessee vs Wisconsin: Typically the pre-season's marquee tournament, the Maui Invitational is ripe with teams looking for life after disappointing starts.  Wisconsin couldn't keep up with Creighton's offense in their only test thus far, while Tennessee already dropped a home contest to Chattanooga.
Georgetown vs Oregon: More slow starts here, as Oregon lost their opening test at Baylor and Georgetown followed a one point home loss to Maryland with an embarrassing six point home loss to Arkansas State on Thursday.
Oklahoma St vs UConn: The Huskies have been nothing short of awful three games into the season.   After an 0-2 start against Wagner and Northeastern, both at home, they escaped Loyola Marymount with a three point win on their way to Maui.  Oklahoma St is one of only two undefeated teams in the field, but hasn't faced a team ranked above 300 by KenPom thus far.
North Carolina vs Chaminade: Against this field and with a de facto first round bye, the Tar Heels would be disappointed with anything other than a championship in this typically marquee tournament.
 
 
Paradise Jam
Creighton vs Ole Miss: The Blue Jays are heavy favorites to take home the title after disposing of NC State in the semi-finals.
Saint Joe's vs NC State: Both teams look to bounce back after semifinal losses.
 
San Diego State vs Cal: After getting wiped by Gonzaga on Monday, Steve Fisher's team looks to bounce back in one of their rare non-conference tests before MWC play.
 
Alabama vs Valpo: The Crimson Tie have already fallen to a strong mid-major in Dayton.  Valpo looks to do the same as they come back from Tuesday's loss to Oregon.
 
Illinois St vs TCU: The Jamie Dixon era in Forth Worth faces it's first test of the season.

Scoreboard Watching: November 19, 2016

Bracketology Scoreboard Watching

In the books

Michigan 76, SMU 54:  For quite possibly time under John Beilein, the Wolverines have a front-court to be reckoned with, and surprisingly so.  Junior DJ Wilson was a non-factor for Michigan through his first two seasons, and is suddenly drawing ESPN's Jay Williams to declare that he's bound for the NBA just a week into the year.   Their length has helped their defense, as the Wolverines have improved from a team that ranked 248th in 2-PT FG defense a year ago, and are up to 86th already, coupled with a methodical but highly-efficient offense.  
 
Xavier 82, Clemson 77: The Tigers had looked strong in their first two games but were no match for a strong Xavier squad.  The their third-place game against Oklahoma on Sunday is an intriguing one.
 
Northern Iowa 73, Oklahoma 67 (OT): The Panthers erased an 18 point second half Sooners' lead to take this one in overtime.  Can they pull off a second straight shocker over Xavier on Sunday?
 
Villanova 96, Wake Forest 77: With a road win over Purdue and a dominating win on a neutral court over Wake, the defending champs seem more than ready to defend their crown.
 
Pitt 78, Marquette 75: A day after each team dropped humbling defeats in NYC, the Panthers get the edge and head into Thanksgiving feeling a little better about themselves.  Marquette hopes to get right against IUPUI, Houston Baptist and Western Carolina before heading to Georgia and Hosting Wisconsin in two of their first three December contests.
 
USC 65, Texas A&M 63: The Trojans announce themselves on the scene as a balanced attack led them to the road win in college station.

Tipping Off This Weekend

Saturday
Saint Mary's at Dayton: The first real test of the season for the Gaels against a Dayton team that looked solid earlier this week in a road test at Alabama.
 
Saturday/Sunday, Hall of Fame Tip-Off
Cincinnati vs Rhode Island: Both teams are expected to make the tournament, but have chewed on cupcakes thus far.  This weekend should prove a good early measuring stick for both squads.
Duke vs Penn State: The Blue Devils will use this to get back on track after Tuesday's loss to Kansas before taking on the Cincinnati/Rhode Island winner on Sunday.
 
Sunday
Tire Pros Invitational
Northern Iowa vs Xavier:  The Panthers pulled off the upset over Oklahoma on Friday, but Xavier was clicking on all cylinders against Clemson in their semi-final.
Clemson vs Oklahoma:  Both teams had eyes on winning this tournament and boosting their standing, but just as important now is escaping the weekend 2-1.
Davidson vs Arizona St: Much like the third place game above, a 2-1 weekend mark is on the line for two teams that will have a lot of work to do to get in the bubble conversation this weekend.
 
Paradise Jam
North Carolina St vs Creighton: The Paradise Jam title is likely to be decided in this first semi-final.  The Bluejays have looked very strong thus far including their home win over Wisconsin and look to keep that momentum going against an ACC opponent on an neutral floor.
St Joe's vs Ole Miss: A win against either opponent in the opposite semi-final seems unlikely, making this game all the bigger for two teams that will need some help come March.
 
Charleston Classic
Villanova vs UCF: The Wildcats have looked like the nation's best team thus far, and there's no reason to thing UCF should slow them down at all.  Should be an easy win for the defending champs.

Scoreboard Watching: November 17, 2016

Bracketology Scoreboard Watching

In the books

Florida Gulf Coast 85, UT-Arlington 72: The Eagles have been impressive in their 1-1 start, hanging with Florida for the first thirty minutes of their opening game loss before taking care of the Sun Belt favorites at home.
 
Butler 70, Northwestern 68: An Instant Classic in Hinkle Fieldhouse as Kamar Baldwin drained a long two with 0.5 seconds left to give Butler the edge at home.  Northwestern showed they can hang with tournament level teams.  If they can better themselves in end of game situations, they could sneak themselves into the bubble conversation.

Tipping off tonight

Michigan vs Marquette: A coin toss game between two teams who could live anywhere from solidly in the field to bubble-out.
 
Pitt vs SMU: Both teams have looked solid in their respective tune-up games, this will start to set the bar for how they go moving forward.
 
Seton Hall at Iowa: A tough road test for a Pirates team hoping for an at-large berth.
 
Clemson vs Davidson: Clemson looks to keep momentum going after their opening-night win over Georgia at home.
 
Providence at Ohio St: The Buckeyes don't have too many chances to impress ahead of their Big Ten/ACC clash at Virginia at month's end.  Meanwhile, Providence looked good in their 80-58 win over a solid Vermont team in their opener.
 
Valparaiso at Oregon: How will Oregon respond from their whooping at Baylor on Tuesday?  This home tilt against Valpo should not be slept on before their trip to Maui next week.

Scoreboard Watching: November 18, 2016

Bracketology Scoreboard Watching

In the books

Michigan 79, Marquette 61: Michigan stormed to a big first half lead and never looked back, burying Marquette in a rather surprising result for both sides.

SMU 76, Pittsburgh 67: The Mustangs have looked strong through three games - maybe even strong enough to be crowned AAC favorites heading into Feast Week.

Seton Hall 91, Iowa 83: The Pirates notch a strong road win over a Big Ten opponent that hopes to get itself into the bubble conversation.  The Hawkeyes get a tune-up before facing Virginia in the Emerald Coast Classic later this week.

Northern Iowa 82, Arizona St 63: Northern Iowa took control of this game early and cruised home for a quality win.

Ohio St 72, Providence 67: JaQuon Lyle paced the Buckeyes with 21 PTS, 8 REB and 7 AST to notch a nice home win.

Clemson 95, Davidson 78: The Tigers have been red hot through two games, but face a real test today against Xavier.

 

Tipping off tonight

Michigan vs SMU: Both teams have looked strong through their early games, each disposing of formidable foes in the semi-finals of the 2K Classic to set-up this title game.
 
Marquette vs Pitt: Was Thursday's blowout loss to Michigan a sign the Wolverines are for real, or that the Golden Eagles have some real problems?  This tilt may begin to answer that question further.
 
Northern Iowa vs Oklahoma: The first of two intriguing semi-finals from Disney today as Northern Iowa looks to pull a mild upset.
 
Clemson vs Xavier: As I said above, the Tigers have looked great so far this year, but now face one of their toughest off-season tests.  A win would surely prove that they're ready to take the next step into ACC contention.
 
Davidson vs Missouri: Davidson couldn't hang with Clemson on Thursday, can they bounce back with this should-win game on Friday?
 
Villanova at Wake Forest: The champs are coming off a nice road win over Purdue and should keep in rolling in this tilt in Charleston.

Scoreboard Watching: November 16, 2016

Bracketology Scoreboard Watching

In the books

Baylor 66, Oregon 49: The Bears send an early statement to the Big 12, holding Oregon to 3-21 3-PT Shooting(!) to run away with this weekday afternoon showdown.  This started a string of games in which teams projected to be on the top-2 lines of the seed list dropped.
 
Kansas 77, Duke 75: Just days after getting dealt a tough loss to Indiana, the Jayhawks edge the overall-top-seed-favorite Blue Devils with a Frank Mason III game winner with 6 seconds left.  
 
Dayton 77, Alabama 72: A solid road win for a Dayton team looking to build momentum heading into Saturday's showdown with Saint Mary's.
 
Kentucky 68, Michigan St 49: The Spartans looked like a jetlagged team and simply couldn't hang with the young and athletic Wildcats.  Whether or not MSU's November gauntlet will be a blessing or a funeral is still to be seen after thier 0-2 start.  Meanwhile, Kentucky's freshmen are playing well together.  Malik Monk went 7-11 3-PT while De'Aaron Fox is currently 21-21 FT on the season.
 
Creighton 79, Wisconsin 67: The Big Ten favorites shot 63% from inside the arc, but were only 11-39 (39!) from beyond, including a 3-13 3-PT night from Bronson Koening.  Meanwhile, the Bluejays were an efficient 50% from both inside and beyond the three-point line and cruised to the home win.

Tipping off tonight

UT-Arlington at Florida Gulf Coast: A night after the powerhouse collision in New York City, peaceful Fort Myers plays host to a mid-major clash as two small conference favorites tip off at Alico Arena.  Both teams are looking to bounce back after losses to Power-5 teams after the Eagles fell to in-state foe Florida and UT-Arlington came up short against Minnesota.
 
Northwestern at Butler: Is this finally the Wildcats year?  NU should be improved under Chris Collins, but it would be tough to see them finishing above .500 and punching a ticket.  If they could work themselves into the bubble conversation, this would be a quality road win they would love to have.