Wednesday, January 11, 2006

MAC Night (err… Morning)cap: The Night of Miscues, Upsets and Injuries

[note: another simulcast of my posts at Hoops Junkie. Be sure to head over there for more roundball talk.]

Certainly an interesting night in the MAC and beyond. The MAC West takes another shot at the East's big dogs, while mild upsets permeated the major conferences. Unfortunately, a few injuries have hit some major players for major teams in the last few days as well, which could make things interesting as conference season gets into full force. Take a look:

  • 52 turnovers. Wait... 52 turnovers?!? That can't be right! But it's what the Toledo-Buffalo boxscore reads. Toledo held homecourt by starting the game with a 27-6 advantage and then holding on through a game that featured the Rockets shooting 58%, but committing 25 turnovers. All of you math majors can figure out that the Bulls, only shooting 43%, committed the other 27 miscues, but still managed to cut the early 20+ point deficit down to 3 with 14 ticks left. I'm sure the Mighty Maniac will provide more complete coverage shortly.

    Also in the MAC, Akron beat Western Michigan for the first time since February 2000. In a night where Romeo Travis only scored 6 points, the Zips (9-3, 3-0 MAC) looked to four other double-digit scorers to secure their fourth straight victory and their best start since 2000.

  • Upset City, Baby. In a game that became eerily reminiscent to the Ohio-UK, OU-BSU, and Akron-BSU games from the last few weeks, Vanderbilt jumped to a 14 point second half lead but let Kentucky stage a late comeback to take a 1-point lead. Vandy quickly regained the lead, though, and never looked back, gaining their first win at UK in 31 years (dating back to the Nixon administration) and their first win ever at Rupp. Also on the upset slate, Oklahoma took a rare home loss, losing to Mizzo in the final seconds 71-69, and NC State, in a mild upset, scored a lopsided 79-60 victory against BC in Boston.

  • The injury bug strikes again. Days after IU lost D.J. White to a season-ending foot injury (his second of the year), Cincinnati forward Armein Kirkland tore an ACL in yesterday's game against UConn, UCLA starting forward Josh Shipp succumbed to season long hip pain, and Alabama forward Chuck Davis blew his ACL and MCL, effectively ending the season for all of these players. Being an expert at seeing star players fall to season ending injury at Ball State, and witnessing our own All-MAC player end his season with an ACL tear and what it has done to that team's season, it will be interesting to see how these teams recover from losing key players.


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