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December 4, 2002 Columns No Comments

The Morning Dish – Thursday, December 5th, 2002

by Brian Seymour

And the Commissioner’s Cup goes to…the ACC!!!

The sad truth of the matter is that I didn’t know there WAS such a thing as the Commissioner’s Cup until ESPN belabored the point over and over Wednesday night, but the big brass spittoon lookalike will be returning to Tobacco Road. Which is probably appropriate when you think about it.

The Big Ten had a chance to win the Challenge for the first time ever, but No. 24 Wisconsin couldn’t hold serve at home, losing to Wake Forest, 90-80. The Badgers were the only team to lose at home in the nine-game series.

Minnesota provided some more last-second thrills as a 40-foot Georgia Tech desperation shot rolled out and gave the No. 17 Golden Gophers a 64-63 win, just a few days after a buzzer-beating 3-pointer knocked off Georgia. Should the Gophers face Georgia State in the NCAA Tournament, those with weak hearts would be advised to watch a different game.

No. 21 Michigan State bounced back from a weak performance in the Great Alaska Shootout with a convincing win over No. 22 Virginia, 82-75. The Spartans pushed their non-conference home win streak to 32 games and displayed their trademark tenaciousness on defense and the boards against the Cavaliers.

Finally, there’s no truth to the rumor that Michigan was held out of the Big Ten/ACC Challenge to be the conference’s ace in the hole for the Big Ten/MEAC Challenge.

Side Dishes

Other ranked teams cruise: Beyond the Big Ten/ACC games, there was a definite lack of interesting matchups involving ranked teams. No. 6 Oregon, No. 11 Kansas, No. 18 Tulsa and No. 23 Mississippi State all posted double-digit wins over, to put it diplomatically, less than stellar competition.

BC senior may be out for season: Boston College’s Uka Agbai, who broke a bone in his neck after a collision Sunday in a game against Holy Cross, may be out for the rest of the season. Agbai, originally expected to be out six-to-eight weeks, may now sit out the rest of the season and apply for a medical redshirt which would allow him to return for the 2003-04 season. Agbai was averaging 14 points and six rebounds after three games.

Snowing and slipping and sliding: Three Division I contests — Toccoa Falls at Wofford, Appalachian State at Gardner-Webb and Reinhardt at Western Carolina — were postponed due to a rare early-season winter storm in the south.

Tonight’s Menu:

• Gonzaga hits the road to face the Grizzlies of Montana. Well, the basketball team anyway. Gametime is 9:35 p.m. Eastern.

• South Carolina at Georgetown face off at 7:30 p.m. in the night’s only meeting between major conference teams.

• Finally, simmer up the jambalaya and put those hurricanes on ice as Tulane “travels” to New Orleans for a 8 p.m. contest to determine Big Easy supremacy.

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