Home » The Morning Dish » Currently Reading:

The Morning Dish – Sunday, January 1, 2017

January 1, 2017 The Morning Dish No Comments

Good morning, Happy New Year and welcome to 2017! Wishing all a blessed and prosperous year ahead.

The final day of 2016 was a collection of many of the things that make college basketball such a great sport. With 12 overtime games, a total of 18 games decided by three points or less, three matchups pairing ranked teams against each other and a total of five ranked teams losing on the day, the sport again ran circles around college football’s poor excuse for a playoff, which continues to make us long for the days when there were just 15-18 bowls and only the champions of leagues could be tied into a bowl.

(If one is being honest, the current ‘playoff’ is absolutely no better than the way college football decided its champion before conference expansion and the BCS. And no playoff will be complete until it includes a champion from every Division I-A or FBS conference).

Back to college basketball, the day would’ve been notable for any of its particular happenings alone. Duke, Indiana and North Carolina all lost, including the Blue Devils and Tar Heels soundly on the road in ACC play. Virginia Tech drilled Duke 89-75 in a performance every bit as complete as the final score, while UNC lost 75-63 to…Georgia Tech? Yes, the same Yellow Jackets who lost to Penn State and were pounded by Tennessee went ahead and defeated a Carolina team that has mowed down one opponent after another this year, often in devastating fashion.

Top-ranked Villanova did not lose, instead going on the road to undefeated Creighton and winning 80-70 in front of a rabid crowd in Omaha. It cannot be said enough: no team is more battle-tested than the Wildcats, who fearless regardless of the opponent or setting.

Sixth-ranked Louisville won handily at Indiana, its 77-62 win seemingly establishing the Cardinals on a level a notch above the Hoosiers this year. Notre Dame won 78-77 in overtime at Pittsburgh, with Steve Vasturia hitting the winner in the final seconds of the extra session.

MAAC favorite and darling Monmouth was stunned at home by Rider, with the Broncs’ 93-90 win in another of those overtime games displaying again that they’ve become a perpetual thorn in the Hawks’ side. Connecticut lost yet again, falling at Tulsa 61-59 in overtime. Who knew that the Golden Hurricane-losers of nine seniors from last year’s NCAA tourney team-would be better than the Huskies at this time of the year? Weber State won at Montana 84-81 in a battle of two of the top Big Sky teams, as Jeremy Senglin hit a game-winning three-pointer in the final second of OT.

Yet perhaps the most impressive team of the day was Florida State. The Seminoles are seemingly a hot prospect every year, oft hyped for big things but rarely delivering. As a result, many have been taking a wait-and-see approach on this year.

It’s time to buy into FSU after it posted a 60-58 win at Virginia to move to 14-1 this year. Leonard Hamilton has always been an excellent recruiter, and this year he has a team with athletes, size and depth galore. Hamilton can literally go 12-deep with his roster, and with it he’s picked up the pace this year, recognizing what others with the most riches are increasingly finding, that the rules encourage such teams to use a shorter shot clock to their advantage against less-talented opponents.

Florida State wasn’t able to come close to its 88.1 point per game average in this one, but it didn’t matter. Dwayne Bacon scored 29 points-nearly half of the Seminoles’ total-and he hit the game-winning three-pointer with four seconds left. FSU beat Virginia at its own game here, and there’s no better compliment to give a team than that.

We got all of that in one day. So while college football made an ill-fated attempt to seize New Year’s Eve the last two years, perhaps we’re finding out now that Dec. 31 really belongs to college hoops, not football.

Side Dishes:

  • Among other notable results from the day, Xavier outlasted Georgetown on the road 81-76. The Hoyas are 0-2 in the Big East.
  • Clemson won at Wake Forest 73-68. The Tigers are going to have a real chance to challenge for an NCAA tourney bid. Also in the ACC, Miami (Fla.) gave North Carolina State a lesson with an 81-63 win that indicates the Wolfpack still have some work to do.
  • UNC Wilmington-recent loser at Clemson this week-opened CAA play with a quality road win, taking down contender Towson 76-67.
  • The Sun Belt is going to be worth watching all season. On its opening day of play, favorite Texas-Arlington stretched its win streak to 10 games with a big second half in a 90-69 win over league newcomer Coastal Carolina. Arkansas State edged Texas-Arlington 74-71, while Arkansas-Little Rock edged Louisiana-Monroe 79-75 in overtime in a rematch of the 2016 conference tourney final.
  • Dartmouth upended New Hampshire 63-62, knocking off one of the America East favorites in the battle for supremacy among the only two NCAA Division I programs in the state of New Hampshire. Brendan Barry hit the game-winning triple with three seconds left for the Big Green.
  • Southland favorite Sam Houston State is stunningly 0-2 in conference play after a 67-65 loss to 2-12 Central Arkansas, as Aaron Weidenaar hit three free throws with a second left.
  • Out west, Gonzaga moved to 14-0 by rallying from a halftime deficit to down Pacific 81-61. Saint Mary’s also handled San Diego 72-60, getting 35 points from its bench including 12 each from Tanner Krebs and Jordan Ford.

Today’s Menu: New Year’s Day once was a quiet one for college basketball, but that’s not the case this year. A schedule of 22 games is TV heavy, with more than half of them available over the air.

  • The day starts with Nebraska looking for another road upset when it goes to Maryland (Noon Eastern, Big Ten Network). Also in the Big Ten: Michigan is at Iowa (2:15 p.m., Big Ten Network) and Minnesota goes to Purdue (4:30 p.m., Big Ten Network).
  • The Missouri Valley has an almost-full schedule of games, and the best one has Illinois State at upstart Loyola (Ill.).
  • The Big East features struggling Providence at Butler (3 p.m., CBSSN) and Marquette at Seton Hall (4:30 p.m., FS1).
  • One of the biggest games of the year in Conference USA has UAB at Middle Tennessee State, a game that is inexplicably not on national television.
  • The Pac-12 has a busy day, with Colorado at Utah (6:30 p.m., ESPNU), Arizona at Stanford and Washington State at Washington (8:30 p.m., ESPNU).
  • Nationally ranked Cincinnati hosts Tulane in an American matchup (7 p.m., CBSSN).

Again, Happy New Year!

Comment on this Article:

Subscribe to Hoopville

Enter your email address to subscribe to Hoopville


Hoopville Archives

College Basketball Tonight

We hope you enjoyed COLLEGE BASKETBALL TONIGHT during the 2016 NCAA Tournament. COLLEGE BASKETBALL TONIGHT is a comprehensive look at the NCAA Tournament hosted by veteran college basketball broadcaster Ted Sarandis, along with co-hosts Mike Jarvis and Terry O'Connor, both former Division I coaches. It also included many great guests, including Hoopville's own Phil Kasiecki.

The show aired on AM 710 WOR in New York City on Sunday evenings starting with Selection Sunday and running through the NCAA Tournament.

Here are links to the shows:

March 13, 2016 - First hour | Second hour

March 20, 2016 - First hour | Second hour

March 27, 2016 - First hour | Second hour

April 3, 2016 - First hour | Second hour

Coaching Changes

The coaching carousel is moving. Keep track of the latest coaching changes right here on Hoopville.

Everybody Needs a Head Coach

Former college basketball coach Mike Jarvis has a new book out, Everybody Needs a Head Coach.

"As you read this book, I hope that Coach Jarvis' experiences inspire you to find your purpose in life."
-Patrick Ewing, NBA Hall of Fame center

"Mike Jarvis' is one of my special friends. I am so pleased that he has taken the time to write this fabulous book."
-Mike Krzyzewski, Five-time NCAA championship head coach, Duke Blue Devils

"In reading this book, I can see that Mike hasn't lost his edge or his purpose. Readers should take a look at what he has to say."
-Jim Calhoun, Three-time NCAA champion, UConn Men's basketball

Review on Hoopville coming soon!

Hoopville Podcasts

College Basketball Tonight – March 19, 2018

March 20, 2018 by

We discuss the wild early rounds of the NCAA Tournament, joined by special guest Kevin McNamara of the Providence Journal for one segment. In addition, we touch on coaching news and other issues surrounding the college game.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – March 17, 2018

March 17, 2018 by

In our latest podcast, there is one main story to focus on: history being made in Charlotte and its aftermath. But we also talk about tough times for the Pac-12 and a key member school, plus an added challenge ahead at Pittsburgh.

College Basketball Tonight – March 11, 2018

March 12, 2018 by

College Basketball Tonight returns with a comprehensive look at the NCAA Tournament bracket, and in the second segment Mount St. Mary’s head coach Jamion Christian joins us.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – March 10, 2018

March 10, 2018 by

As Championship Week nears its climax on the big Saturday, we look at a pair of semifinals and a lot of bubble teams that may be sweating it out on Sunday.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – March 8, 2018

March 8, 2018 by

As Championship Week heats up, we talk about bubble teams who may or may not want to earn their way into the NCAA Tournament, as well as a couple of mid-majors whose conference championship game was played earlier in the week.

Phil Kasiecki on Twitter

Recruiting Coverage

Lincoln captures Hamilton Park title

August 15, 2017 by

For the first time, a public school won the Hamilton Park Summer League, and they were led by a big effort from a junior point guard in the title game.

Notes from a day at the 2017 Boston Shootout

June 12, 2017 by

Some news and notes coming from the second and final day of action at the 2017 Boston Shootout, where the host program provided plenty of talent, but so did a program that produced a team that beat them.

Notes from a day at the 2017 Northeast Hoops Festival

April 11, 2017 by

The Northeast Hoops Festival helped bring in the new spring travel season in New England, and we have notes from some of Saturday’s action.

2016 Boston Back to School Showcase notes

September 12, 2016 by

We look back at the 2016 Boston Back to School Showcase, where a couple of Boston City League teams were among the most impressive on the day.

2016 Hoopville Spring Finale championship recap

June 28, 2016 by

We look back at the championship games of the 2016 Hoopville Spring Finale, which had a big local flavor as one might have expected.