Over the weekend, the college basketball world saw multiple top 25 teams fall as tournaments around the country concluded. With full days of basketball still to come this week, here is a recap of the best games that happened this weekend.
#15 Syracuse vs #13 Oregon
The best game on the schedule for Friday was supposed to be the 3rd place game of the 2k Empire Classic between Syracuse and Oregon at Madison Square Garden with two top 15 teams colliding. A star-studded matchup included standout freshman like Bol Bol for the Ducks and Jalen Carey for the Orange.
To say the least, this wasn’t very close.
Bol dominated every aspect of the game as he dropped 26 points and hauled in nine rebounds in an effort that made it look easy. For the first time at the College level, Bol looked like the dominating 7’2 big man that he is.
The Orange had four players in double figures but got no production out of anyone else. Syracuse shot an abysmal 5-28 from three point land in the losing effort.
LA Tech vs #22 LSU
LSU was supposed to blow out LA Tech. The Tigers’ offense couldn’t be stopped in their first two games and looked good again in a winning effort against Memphis in the previous game.
Now it’s time to give credit to the Bulldogs.
Louisiana Tech held the LSU offense in check in the first half and had the in-state matchup within three points at halftime, down just 36-33.
Despite the strong first half showing, the Bulldogs were unable to outscore the Tigers in the second half and fell, 74-67. sophomore Anthony Duruji was the standout performer from this game as he scored 22 points in the losing effort.
Freshman Ja’vonte Smart led the way for LSU as he had 16 points on 7-10 shooting on the day. LSU improves to 4-0 on the season and will likely experience a step up in this weeks rankings.
In other top 25 action on Friday, #16 Virginia Tech took down Northeastern, 88-60, behind sophomore Nickeil Alexander-Walker’s 20 points. The Hokies improved to 4-0 on the season and will improve in the rankings after multiple top 25 teams above them lost.
#23 Purdue took down Davidson to advance to the final of the Charleston Classic, where they would play Virginia Tech. Carsen Edwards did it again, dropping 29 points in the victory.
It was a blowout in the Battle 4 Atlantis Campus Game as #4 Virginia smoked Coppin State 97-40. In a great team offensive attack, UVA’s trademark defense showed up to play as well, limiting another opponent to 40 points or less. No player on Coppin State had more than 6 points in the game.
#7 UNC beat Tennessee Tech on Friday behind 15 points from star senior Luke Maye. Maye led a balanced offensive attack that saw 6 players, including freshman phenom Nassar Little, score in double digits.
The offensive explosions continued as #12 Kansas State beat to Eastern Kentucky, 95-68. After a quiet offensive day in their last time out, junior Xavier Sneed led the Wildcats with 16 points to their highest scoring total of the season in the win.
#2 Kansas beat Louisiana, 89-76, in another impressive game from one of the top teams in the country. Senior Lagerald Vick went off for 33 points and 9 rebounds, both which led the Jayhawks in the victory.
#17 Mississippi State smoked Long Beach State, 79-51, to improve to 3-0 on the year. Senior Quinndary Weatherspoon once again led the Bulldogs in scoring with 21 points and the Miss State defense held every LBSU player out of double digit scoring.
St. Francis (PA) stood no chance against #20 UCLA as the Bruins won in a rout, 95-58. This was another game where no player on the losing team had double-digit points, and freshman center Moses Brown topped it off with 23 points and 14 rebounds.
#6 Nevada killed Little Rock, 87-56, in another dominating performance from the Wolf Pack. Senior star Caleb Martin finished with 21 points in the Nevada victory.
#8 Villanova vs Furman
Saturday’s best game was at the Advocare Invitational tournament which saw Furman upset #8 Villanova, 76-68, in overtime. The loss was the second straight for the Wildcats after an expected 2-0 start to the year.
The Paladins attack was led by junior and leading scorer Jordan Lyons who had 17 points in the win. At just 5’11, Lyons has stood tall all year averaging 23.4 points for a 5-0 Furman team.
The rest of the Paladins deserve just as much credit for the upset win as their leader Lyons, as all of the starters scored at least 13 points in the game. Only two players on the bench played more than three minutes, and only three players played at all in the game outside of the starters for Furmon. Senior Matt Rafferty was able to win the big man battle over Villanova’s senior Eric Paschall by scoring 15 points and bringing down 17 rebounds.
The Wildcats have clear problems they need to fix including who is going to score the points. Defenses have been attempting to control Paschall and senior Phil Booth and nobody else has stepped up for Villanova besides sophomore Collin Gillespie. Good defenses will continue to have their way with the Wildcats unless they make changes fast.
After some very impressive wins, #18 Michigan took down a bad George Washington team, 84-61, to improve to 5-0. Senior Charles Matthews and sophomore Jordan Poole led the way for the Wolverines with 25 and 22 points, respectively.
#24 Marquette enjoyed what was likely their last day in the top 25 for now with a win over Presbyterian by a score of 74-55. Junior Sam Hauser has 19 points and senior Joseph Chartouny added 16 off the bench.
#16 Virginia Tech vs #23 Purdue
The highlight matchup of the day saw two of the 25 best teams in the country go head-to-head in the championship game of the Charleston Classic. A highly contested offensive battle ended in the Hokies defeating the Boilermakers, 89-83.
Alexander-Walker once again led the team in scoring and rebounds with 25 and 7. Seniors Justin Robinson and Ahmed Hill took over the secondary scoring roles with 23 points apiece.
Edwards once again led the way for Purdue with 26 points, but went 3-11 from three-point range. Junior Evan Bourdreaux hit 7 shots off the bench for 18 points.
The Hokies improved to 4-0 on the year and will likely either hold their spot or improve in the next set of rankings. Purdue will fall after the loss to a quality opponent but maybe not too far as they may still be ranked next week.
#12 Kansas State defeated Penn, 64-48, for their second win of the weekend. Senior Dean Wade led the way for the Wildcats with 17 points in the win.
Tennessee Tech was massacred by #11 Michigan State, 101-33, at the Continental Tire Las Vegas Invitational tournament. The game was over early, as no player on the Spartans played more than 27 minutes and no player on the Golden Eagles scored more than six points.
#18 Michigan defeated Providence, 66-47, in another good win for the Wolverines. Leading scorer and freshman Ignas Brazdeikis led the team to their fifth win on the year with 20 points in the winning effort.
#10 Kentucky beat VMI, 92-82, in a closer game than the score suggests. Although the Wildcat offense was solid the defense couldn’t stop sophomore Bubba Parham and the Keydets as Parham had 35 in the losing effort.