The Just Happened: Saturday, February 9th 2013
By: Bracket Challenge Staff
On a weekend when most of North East was digging out from another winter squall, NCAA basketball went on. Here’s what you missed:
Notre Dame outlasted Louisville over five overtimes to unearth the 11th ranked Cardinals 104-101, in the longest regular season game in Big East history. The Irish were without standout star Jack Cooley through all five OTs (him having fouled out in regulation), but sophomore Chane Behanan stepped up, putting together 30 points and 15 boards in a game that went down to the wire on six separate occasions. The win moves Notre Dame to 7-4, tied with the Cards in the Big East, one and half games back of Syracuse.
Elsewhere in the Big East, Pittsburgh continued its march to March with a 62-52 win over #17 Cincinnati. In four shorts weeks the Panthers have moved from bubble team (maybe worse) to real contender, shredding Nova, UConn, then #6 Syracuse and Cincinnati to move within a game of the conference crown.
The Fighting Illini are also on the rise; after last week’s astounding win over then #1 Indiana, Illinois took down another ranked team on Sunday, #18 Minnesota. At 4-7 in the Big Ten they’re a far cry from a tournament seed, but star forward Tyler Griffey (30 points and 12 assists in their last two wins) sure is making life difficult for Big Ten teams to stay on top.
Wisconsin’s Ben Brust emerged the hero for the Badger’s in Saturday’s marquee Big Ten matchup; the junior guard hit a mid-range jumper to tie the game against the #3 Michigan in regulation and then a three-pointer in OT to move Wisconsin past the Wolverines, 65-62. Michigan is in the middle of a fall from grace, going from ranked first in the nation only a week ago to tally two losses (Indiana being the other) and a hard fought overtime win against Ohio State.
With LeBron James and Dwayne Wade looking on, Miami (FL) knocked down 15 3s on their way to an 87-61 win over the surprisingly lackluster Tar Heels. The win moves Miami to 10-0, perfect in ACC play and to 19-3 overall, setting a school record for wins with still eight games to play.
With Kansas State up next, the Jayhawks dropped their third straight game to unranked opponents, losing to the Sooners 72-66 and fall to 7-3 in the Big 12. The loss, coupled with K-State win on Saturday, moves the dirty birds out of first place in the conference (and likely way down in the AP Top 25).