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Saturday Notes – January 24, 2015

January 25, 2015 Columns, Your Phil of Hoops No Comments

While this Saturday didn’t have quite the same top-tier matchups of a week ago, it was still an important day of action, especially in a couple of conferences where teams are tightly bunched together in the standings and played each other. The end result, for the most part is that the conference races remain quite muddled. That’s a reminder that there’s still a lot of basketball to play, and before long some of these races will probably sort themselves out.

With that, here are some thoughts on some of the day’s most noteworthy games.

Kansas 75, Texas 62: Kansas is starting to remind us that that they pretty much own the Big 12, especially with this one coming in Austin.

Kansas State 63, Oklahoma State 53: The Wildcats continue to be solid in Big 12 play, this time riding a good shooting game by Nino Williams.

Baylor 69, Oklahoma 58: How good is the Big 12? Oklahoma is now below .500 in conference play after losing this one in Waco.

Nebraska 79, Michigan State 77: For a time, it looked like Nebraska had this one comfortably, but Michigan State made it a ballgame even after Nebraska seemed to have answers.

Purdue 67, Iowa 63: The Big Ten race tightens a little more.

Miami 66, Syracuse 62: The ACC race gets a bit more interesting as both of these teams now have two losses, and yet neither is really perceived as a contender, either.

Oregon 82, UCLA 64: Just as UCLA was starting to come to life, they’re starting to trend in the wrong direction again.

Xavier 89, DePaul 76: Who would have thought that a game against DePaul would be a must-win? Well, Xavier needed to bounce back from another road loss at Providence, one in which they didn’t play well but somehow forced overtime. The amazing thing is the Blue Demons are still a game up on them in the standings.

Texas A&M 67, Tennessee 61: The Aggies have been playing well of late and look more and more like an SEC contender. Knocking off the Vols in Knoxville can’t hurt.

Tulsa 66, East Carolina 64: Tulsa remains undefeated in American Athletic Conference play with another road win, though they needed to rally from a halftime deficit for this one.

San Diego 77, Brigham Young 74: Simply put, Brigham Young didn’t need this loss at all. Yes, it was on the road, but the Cougars are now four games back in the West Coast Conference and it doesn’t help their NCAA Tournament at-large chances.

Santa Clara 60, Pepperdine 57: A tough weekend on the road for the Waves, who go from being right behind Gonzaga and Saint Mary’s to part of a cluster of 5-4 teams in West Coast Conference play.

UAB 81, Old Dominion 68: It was a tough week for Old Dominion, dropping an overtime decision at Middle Tennessee and now this one in Birmingham.

William & Mary 78, Northeastern 62: We’re back to a tie atop the CAA as the host Tribe ran away from the Huskies late in this showdown.

Dartmouth 70, Harvard 61: Dartmouth ends an 11-game losing streak against Harvard, and the road team wins both games this season between these two.

Robert Morris 67, St. Francis Brooklyn 65: Here come the Colonials. It’s been a tough season for them thus far, but ow they’ve won three in a row and six of seven to stand in a three-way tie atop the Northeast Conference at 6-2 after this big road win over a fellow 6-2 team.

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