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Saturday Notes – January 16, 2016

January 17, 2016 Columns, Your Phil of Hoops No Comments

Saturdays are busy days at this time of the year, and this one was no different. In looking over the entire landscape, the ACC seems to stand out this time around as it had several important games. One team stayed hot, another got a big road win, and still another got a road win to boost their surprising start.

But that was only part of it. A number of road wins stood out on the day, and one mid-major has a six-way tie at the top one third of the way through their schedule.

With that, here are some thoughts coming out of many of the day’s games.

Oklahoma 70, West Virginia 68: West Virginia certainly tried, but couldn’t make history by knocking off the No. 1 and No. 2 teams in the AP poll in the same week.

Maryland 100, Ohio State 65: There’s certainly no shame in losing at Maryland, but losing by 35 is not good for the Buckeyes, who continue to be a tough team to figure out.

North Carolina 67, NC State 55: A missed opportunity for the Wolfpack, who need to get some quality wins.

Clemson 76, Miami 65: The Tigers are your “come out of nowhere” team with what they have done the last two weeks. Certainly, they’ve taken advantage of a nice three-game home stretch and four of the last five at home, but they have made it count.

Notre Dame 95, Duke 91: A huge win in Durham for Notre Dame as Bonzie Colson has a career game with 31 points and 11 rebounds. It’s also a reminder that while the Blue Devils are good, they are very beatable.

Baylor 63, Texas Tech 60: Close but no cigar for Texas Tech again.

Villanova 55, Georgetown 50: Much like NC State in their game, this was a missed opportunity for Georgetown, who might need a few more quality wins than NC State does for their NCAA Tournament resume.

Seton Hall 81, Providence 72: The Pirates have a nice record and a few good wins, but this one – on the road, no less – is their best one yet.

Texas A&M 79, Georgia 45: It’s not a surprise that the Aggies won, but by 34 is. Not good for the 9-6 Bulldogs.

Florida 80, Ole Miss 71: Give Ole Miss credit for making this a competitive game, but Florida jumped out early and Stefan Moody’s early fouls only added to it.

LSU 76, Arkansas 74: The Tigers came into SEC play with work to do, and at 4-1 in conference play they’re off to a good start to that end.

Vanderbilt 71, Alabama 63: Vandy still has a good deal of work to do, but this is a start.

Washington 89, Arizona State 85: Another big game for Andrew Andrews, the Pac-12’s leading scorer, helps Washington move to 4-1 in the Pac-12.

Virginia Tech 78, Georgia Tech 77: Did you have Virginia Tech starting ACC play at 4-1, including this win on the road? Didn’t think so.

Temple 67, Cincinnati 65: Suddenly, the Owls have come alive in conference play after a so-so non-conference showing. Fran Dunphy loves to play a tough schedule, and it’s paying off now as they have swept Cincinnati.

San Diego State 56, Boise State 53: A big win for the Aztecs in Boise reaffirms that they are the team to beat in the Mountain West. They have looked very vulnerable, but as the last undefeated team in conference play they now look like a team that had growing pains in non-conference that they have emerged from.

VCU 94, Richmond 89: The Rams weren’t getting much notoriety in non-conference as they weren’t racking up the wins, but they’re 5-0 in the Atlantic 10 after winning at their arch-rival.

Duquesne 95, St. Bonaventure 88: A tough first Atlantic 10 loss for the Bonnies.

James Madison 86, Hofstra 82 (OT): In part from this game that lived up to its billing between two of the preseason favorites, the CAA is now in a six-way tie at the top.

UNCW 97, William & Mary 94: Much like the aforementioned game, this featured two contenders who had a great battle and exit the game as part of a six-way tie for first.

Loyola (Ill.) 51, Northern Iowa 41: The unpleasant surprise of the Missouri Valley is Northern Iowa being 2-4 after this home loss.

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