Highlighted games for 12/28

Highlighted games for 12/28
Dec 28, 2006, 02:11 am
HIGHLIGHTED GAMES (Alphabetical order via the HOME team)

-GEORGE WASHINGTON VS AIR FORCE. This game is part of the Cable Car Classic being hosted by Santa Clara. Air Force is off to a great start. Their only loss has been against Duke, and they have some pretty nice wins on their resume. This could end up being another. George Washington has a great record, but a poor schedule. If they win this game it could be their most impressive win of the year, so it’s a big deal for them considering how down the Atlantic Ten is, and how weak the rest of their OOC schedule was. It’s two very contrasting styles. Air Force loves to pass the ball around and run a Princeton-like offense, whereas GW loves to run up and down the floor. It should be a very interesting game, and there’s quite a bit on the line for both teams as well.

-CALIFORNIA AT ARIZONA (Pac Ten). This is the conference opener for both teams. Cal appears to be good, but they still don’t have a whole lot of credentials, so if they want to make the NCAA Tournament they need to do well in conference. Winning this game would really boost their profile. Arizona looks like a #1 seed right now.

-STANFORD AT ARIZONA STATE (Pac Ten). Stanford is 7-2, but hasn’t really beaten anyone and needs a strong showing in conference play. This is the kind of game that they’re going to have to be able to win.

-GEORGIA AT CLEMSON. This is a big game for both teams. Clemson is unbeaten and Georgia has just two losses, but for the most part both these teams have amassed their records by playing very weak competition. Georgia has a big win against Gonzaga and Clemson has knocked off South Carolina, Mississippi State and Old Dominion, but those teams aren’t exactly heavyweights and the rest of their wins have been from buy games. Both these teams will face stiff competition in conference, but this is a chance to really get a nice win out of conference. This is also a rivalry game, so it should be interesting.

-GEORGE MASON AT DREXEL (Colonial). George Mason is just 5-4 this year after having gone to the Final Four a season ago. Drexel is off to a great start. They are 7-2 on the year with wins on the road against Syracuse and Villanova. Out of their nine games, six have been on the road. Drexel is well on their way to an at-large bid if they can avoid falling apart in conference play. This is their conference opener, and it’s a home game, so they’ll want a win here to keep their momentum going.

-PURDUE AT INDIANA STATE. Purdue appears to be the much better team, but this is a potential trap game. Indiana State is tough to beat at home, and already has an upset win against Butler. The Boilermakers have a solid resume as it is and a loss wouldn’t hurt them too much, but it’s still something that they’d like to avoid. It will be interesting to see how they do on the road in a hostile environment.

-WESTERN KENTUCKY AT MIDDLE TENNESSEE (Sun Belt). Western KY lost their conference opener, and they really can’t afford to lose anymore if they want an at-large bid. Middle Tennessee is a rival game for them, so beating them at their place may not be easy.

-RUTGERS AT NORTH CAROLINA. This isn’t a Buy Game, but it is still a big mismatch. Rutgers has been playing better lately. After a 1-5 start they’ve won five straight. They have not beaten anyone that appears to be a solid NCAA Tournament team in that stretch though, so winning at North Carolina isn’t all that likely. If it were to happen, it would really boost their profile though.

-SMU AT OKLAHOMA. SMU is 7-1 and just got a pretty decent road win against rival TCU, but they still don’t have any major victories on their resume. Oklahoma is 6-3 and although they don’t appear to be a top 25 caliber team (or even an NCAA Tourney team at this point) they are still one of the better opponents SMU plays. If they can pull off this win on the road it will really help out their profile.

-WASHINGTON AT USC (Pac Ten). Both these teams have good records, but Washington hasn’t played on the road much and if they struggle on the road all throughout conference play they could be in a little bit of trouble. USC has played well against some top caliber teams, but they still need some big wins on their profile if they want to be considered an NCAA Tournament team. Winning this would be really big for them.

-UNLV AT TEXAS TECH. This game is interesting for several reasons. If Texas Tech wins, it makes Bobby Knight the all time winningest coach in college basketball history. It also gives them a big out of conference quality win. UNLV 10-2 and has a big road win against Nevada, but is still under a lot of peoples’ radars. This game is on national television and has a big spotlight on it, so if they can win this, it could be their way of making a statement of how good a team they are in front of the entire nation. Texas Tech is also a team that has improved a lot as the year has gone on, so it should be a fun one to watch.

-WASHINGTON STATE AT UCLA (Pac Ten). Washington State has just one loss and has a big win against Gonzaga to go along with their impressive record. The thing is that all their other wins came against cupcakes, and some of them were battles. Despite the win against Gonzaga, it’s hard to say whether or not they are for real. UCLA is ranked #1 in the country and plays killer defense, so to say that this is a trial by fire for Wazzu would be an understatement. It will be very interesting to see what they do on the road against the #1 team. An upset win would make them one of the hottest stories in college basketball. However, simply competing could be a statement that they are for real even if they don’t end up winning the game. Both teams play very good defense, so don’t be surprised if this is a low scoring affair.


-DUQUESNE AT BOSTON COLLEGE. Boston College is coming off a blowout loss to Kansas and needs to rebound. A win gets them to 8-3 on the season.

-TROY AT GEORGIA TECH. Georgia Tech just won a big game against rival Georgia. They’ll improve to 9-3 with a win today.

-TENNESSEE MARTIN AT HAWAII. Hawaii is 8-4 on the year, and has won their last four games, including victories over Nebraska and Creighton. All came at home, but that’s still a pretty good run.

-DETROIT AT KANSAS. Kansas should role in this one big time. A win gets them to 11-2.

-SAN FRANCISCO AT LOUISVILLE. Louisville is in the midst of playing three games in four days, but all are Buy Games so it isn’t that big a challenge. They should win this one no problem.

-MOUNT SAINT MARY’S AT MARYLAND. Maryland should improve to 12-2 with a win in this one.

-YALE AT MASSACHUSETTS. A win improves U Mass to 10-3, but they still have a lot to do in order to get into the NCAA Tournament. They can’t afford too many slipups once they get into conference play.

-LAMAR AT MEMPHIS. Memphis shouldn’t have too much trouble improving to 10-3.

-ARMY AT MICHIGAN. Army is 7-3, but they are likely to be blown out in this one. Michigan was just blown out by UCLA and still has no notable wins on the season. They certainly don’t want to drop this one.

-MAINE AT NEVADA. Nevada has just one loss on the season, and that isn’t likely to change tonight.

-NORFOLK STATE AT NEW MEXICO STATE. This could be the eight win in a row for NMSU. They are starting to build up their resume.

-RIDER AT NOTRE DAME. Notre Dame is a good team with some good wins, but their RPI is poor due to a very weak schedule. Rider is 7-4 and is better than a lot of teams the Irish have faced, but they still aren’t likely to pull the upset on the road. Notre Dame will improve to 11-1 with a win.

-PORTLAND AT OREGON. Oregon should have very little trouble remaining undefeated.

-UNC ASHEVILLE AT SOUTH CAROLINA. A win gets the Gamecocks to 8-2 and keeps them on pace to enter conference play with a good record.

-TENNESSEE TECH AT TENNESSEE. The Vols should have little trouble improving to 11-2. They have been playing very good basketball lately and have racked up some big wins.

-CENTENARY AT TEXAS. Texas should win in a blowout and improve to 9-3 on the year.

-GRAMBLING AT TEXAS A&M. A win gets TAMU to 11-2. This is their last cupcake of the year. Their next game is against Winthrop, and they enter conference play after that.

-AMERICAN AT VIRGINIA. Virginia needs to rebound from an atrocious showing in the San Juan Shootout. A win gets them to 7-3.

-MARYLAND EASTERN SHORE AT WEST VIRGINIA. West Virginia can get to 9-1 with a win, but they still really haven’t been tested yet.

-MISSISSIPPI VALLEY STATE AT LSU. This is LSU’s second game of their round robin invitational tournament, and they should have little trouble winning it.

-ALCORN STATE AT NEW MEXICO. Alcorn State is winless and that isn’t likely to change tonight. New Mexico can improve to 9-3.

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