Tag:Matt Norlander
Posted on: February 8, 2012 10:32 am

Podcast: Kentucky now a cut above?

Once again, Duke vs. UNC tonight. But Duke's loss at home to Miami has tempered the anticipation for this game. (AP)

By Matt Norlander

After last night's Florida-Kentucky game, Parrish settled into the Gators' locker room and taped this podcast. Goodman was at his home, and I was just happy the connection stayed strong.

We've got a consistent, basketball-heavy edition of the pod today. Normally that's not always the case, with Parrish, Goodman or myself tossing in some non-hoops stories. Actually, that eventually happens too, but this one stays on message for most of the 36 minutes we talk.
The obvious topics:
  • From the beginning: After the way Kentucky won so convincingly, and how Ohio State barely got by Purdue, is it now that UK is on a shelf higher than other teams? I say no, but Goodman and Parrish disagree.
  • 8:00: The first segment is more Kentucky and Florida. This is the Ohio State talk.
  • 13:20: Parrish will be at tonight's Duke-UNC game, which doesn't have the urgency it's had in the past. Duke is coming off that loss to Miami, and a double-digit fall to UNC wouldn't be shocking at all.
  • 15:44: Somehow we get into Las Vegas, ATM, strip club stories. If I don't run this ship tightly then it stands to get really, really sketchy territory.
  • 18:20: Back on topic with Duke.
  • 22:00: We address UConn and The guys also hammer UConn for its incredible fall as of late. Goodman puts Calhoun in a wheelchair while coaching.
  • 27:00: In other news, Memphis is headed to the Big East. Why is that really good for Memphis, really good for the Big East and not all that great for Memphis coach Josh Pastner?
  • 32:00: You think we can end this on a graceful note? Of course we can't.

Again, I thank you for taking the time to listen to the podcast--whenever you can. I ask that you, if you like what we're doing here, encourage like-minded hoopheads to subscribe in Tunes as well. Guests like Jay Bilas, Seth Davis, they're the guys who make me sound better and make the podcast worthwhile. The other guys? Gary Parrish and Jeff Goodman, they really make it entertaining, and of course you can count on our trio show each Wednesday. The RSS feed is another way to keep the podcasts coming to you ASAP. We've got a Zune download link as well.

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Posted on: February 8, 2012 9:05 am

Wakeup Call: The best hairdos in hoops

The posters handed out at Rupp last night channel the famous one of Michael Jordan.

By Matt Norlander

Donald Trump is turning an iconic post office into a luxury hotel. // The last WWI veteran has died, and with it, a chapter of the world's history. // Some thrill-seeker is taking daredevil-ism to the highest level: free-falling from the nebulous region of Earth and space, becoming the first human to break the sound barrier, without a plane, in the process. // The top 10 Oscar speeches. // I found this piece on fat people and authenticity to have its faults, but still worth examining ...

The best hair hoops has to offer. Mike Wilder, you are an inspiration.

★ We've got you covered on Duke and Carolina. Read this about the Heels. Then read this about being darker blue. Both are great.

★ Georgetown and Syracuse play tonight. This is a good read to prep yourself for a great night of hoop on the tube.

★ Cool to know: As of late, the record for the earliest foul-out came in the first half of a game this season.

★ Latest Bracketology from Palm is out. What angers or pleases you most?

★ Get up to date on the best and worst of teams' performance in-conference. Sir Gasaway even got a shout-out on air last night from Vitale. Very cool.

★ Markel Brown has learned how to make himself into a name while playing for a mediocre team. Dunk, dunk away!

★ Jim Calhoun will be back. He said it himself. And I do not doubt that man and his affairs.

★ I've long wanted to write a longer piece on the value and reward of winning a regular-season title. This Shane Ryan piece taps into that.

★ Did ESPN once again take some of Luke Winn's hard-to-calculate, unique work and not credit him on air? Lot of good people at the Mothership. Let's hope this was a mistake.

★ Evansville, man. They're good for at least one pretty big win per year.

★ Which coach has approached his 1,000th game?

► Pretty honored and flattered by this. The #NatersgoneNate trend has extended to the point where South Dakota State is using the term to sell tickets for BracketBusters. I'm not asking for royalties or anything.

♬ The Black Keys will be the only repeat artist pushed here in the Wakeup Call. Primarily it's because the Keys sock your rocks, and secondarily, it's because they have a new video. Check it.

Get More: The Black Keys, Gold On The Ceiling, Music, More Music Videos

Category: NCAAB
Posted on: February 7, 2012 12:57 pm
Edited on: February 7, 2012 2:21 pm

Tuesday poll, here we go

By Matt Norlander

You know what to do. Here we are again, voting on the outcomes of games. The results will air on "Courtside with Seth Davis" Wednesday night at 7 p.m. ET, as well as "Inside College Basketball," which goes live at 11 p.m. ET later that night. Both shows, of course, are on the CBS Sports Network.

Want more of us? Or more interaction with hoops fans? We suggest you like the Eye On College Basketball Facebook page. And if that's not enough, CBSSports.com has your roundball fix tended to thanks to our daily newsletter.
Posted on: February 7, 2012 9:09 am

Wakeup Call: Ozzie Guillen spotted at DePaul game

Guillen, left, is the opposite of DePaul. (AP)
By Matt Norlander

I could not believe the details of this story as it went along. READ READ READ. // The States haven't had too much snow across most of the land, but Europe's been in a historic deep freeze. Great photography there. // Your our-justice-system-can't-be-this-stupid story of the day. // The world has seen its first successful jaw transplant. // Not a good time to forget your password ...

★ You need more on that pathetic display by UConn last night? Read this.

★ Good ol' Gorgui Dieng!

★ More on the choke-hold the MAC East has over the West. These numbers are fairly insane. MAC East is one of the 16 best conferences out there!

★ Steven Pledger celebrated a game-tying 3 before it went through the hoop. Hilarious, but also legitimate reason for a coach to really chew a guy out. Then again -- we've all done this at some level of basketball.

★ Speaking of that Oklahoma game, it was a late-arriving crowd last night. They never really support the hoops well or consistently in Norman, do they?

★ Well ... isn't this awkward. Dexter Strickland is dating Austin Rivers' sister. At least Dexter isn't playing (?).

★ Utah State senior Brady Jardine will have his basketball career come to an abrupt end.

★ Who you callin' "we"?

★ Andy Katz, I like it when you write like this.

★ Drew Cannon, did you just break the RPI code forever? Forever-ever? For-EVA-EVAH?

★ The stat you'll hear rerferenced 96 times in the next 48 hour.

★ I'm telling ya, four-year scholarships will be a reality by 2015.

★ I know you don't need a college hoops cheat sheet now that the season is over, but if you've got a pal or two you think needs a brief rundown, send 'em this link.

► Interview of Ozzie Guillen at a DePaul basketball game. If only we could get these weekly. Who is college basketball's Ozzie Guillen? Trick question. We aren't that lucky.

♬ Somewhat surprisingly, I've not yet embedded a Floyd song this season. In honor of that entrenching first link above, I'm linking a track from my favorite Pink Floyd album, "Animals." Album is essentially four songs and you hear something new with each listen. Here's "Sheep."

Category: NCAAB
Posted on: February 6, 2012 3:49 pm

Tony Mitchell indefinitely suspended at Alabama

By Matt Norlander

One of college basketball's most ferocious dunkers is on the shelf for the time being. Before Alabama's practice Monday afternoon, head coach Anthony Grant announced junior forward Tony Mitchell was indefinitely suspended from the team, using the ever-reliable/regrettable "conduct detrimental to the team" reasoning.

Cecil Hurt of the Tuscaloosa News first reported the suspension on Twitter, quoting Anthony Grant as saying Mitchell's behavior was "an accumulation," rather than one incident or event.

Mitchell averages 13.1 points and seven rebounds per game. He had 14 points and four rebounds in 31 minutes during Alabama's overtime home win against Ole Miss Saturday. Alabama's next two games are at 13-10 Auburn Tuesday and at 13-9 LSU Saturday.
Posted on: February 6, 2012 1:41 pm
Edited on: February 6, 2012 1:43 pm

Non-BCS Power Pyramid, Week 12

By Matt Norlander

The Super Bowl set all of us back a little bit. I got around to Power Pyramid sorting this morning, and here’s what we have: 15 teams that have pretty much separated themselves. Yeah, a few fringers and teams that just missed out are there, but not like the mainstays who’ve been paying rent for well over a month.

We also have a new top-ranked team.

Top Tier

1. Murray State (23-0). A Sentence: I think I’ll make the rule now that, if you get to February undefeated, you take the top spot(s) in the Pyramid. A Statistic:  Including Saint Mary’s, the average KenPom ranking of the teams Murray State has left on its schedule: 173. More and more I begin to doubt this team can get a 3 seed if it runs the table.  The Schedule: vs. Tennessee State, Thursday; vs. Austin Peay, Saturday.

2. Saint Mary’s (22-2). A Sentence: To put it is clearly as can be, I didn’t ever think SMC would reach these kind of heights this season.  A Statistic: The Gaels are not the biggest or tallest team, but they grab 73.7 percent of their defensive-rebound opportunities. I think that’s the biggest aspect to their success. Randy Bennett’s teams have never rebounded like this before. The Schedule: at Gonzaga, Thursday; vs. Santa Clara, Saturday.

3. UNLV (21-4). A Sentence:  When it lost to San Diego State a few weeks ago I didn’t flinch, but another L, this one at Wyoming, forces me to shift the playing pieces. A Statistic: Since the Mountain West is just an eight-team league now, it’s actually got a schedule where the second half mirrors the first. The league just finished the first half of conference play, so now everyone will go through the same eight-game cycle again, only switching home/away teams. The Schedule: vs. San Diego State, Saturday.

Ron Swanson Approves

4. Harvard (20-2). A Sentence: Ivy play comes to a head when the Crimson get a tough road game at Penn Friday, and that’s going to be the game that essentially decides of Harvard cruises to a tournament bid. A Statistic: It’s the defense that’s getting it done. Harvard’s not ranked in the top 25 in any tempo-free category. The Schedule: at Penn, Friday; at Princeton, Saturday.

5. Creighton (21-3). A Sentence: Creighton, like a lot of Pyramid teams lost this week, so it’s not really warranted to shake the cage too much. A Statistic: Creighton’s lack of urgency on defense is what came back to kill it in losing at Northern Iowa. The Panthers only turned the ball over on 3.3 percent of their possessions, and Creighton is ranked 336th in turnover percentage. The Schedule: at Evansville, Tuesday; vs. Wichita State, Saturday.

6. San Diego State (20-3). A Sentence: I feel a little dirty keeping SDSU this high after it barely got out alive playing at home against Boise State. A Statistic: Steve Fisher now has seven straight 20-win seasons at a place that was a miserable basketball school before he got there. What a coaching job. The Schedule: at UNLV, Saturday.

Temple has quietly taken control of an unpredictable Atlantic 10. (AP)

7. Temple (17-5). A Sentence: I’ve never wavered on Temple, who has no excuse not to run away with the Atlantic 10 now. A Statistic: I say that about the Owls because, to me, they’re clearly the class of the conference, yet the top eight teams are separated by two games. The A10 is so hairy it’s ridiculous, and I think unprecedented. The Schedule: vs. George Washington, Wednesday; vs. Xavier Saturday.

8. Wichita State (20-4). A Sentence: There aren’t two other games Saturday I’m looking forward to more than the one Wichita State is playing in. A Statistic: With an average experience of 2.5 years per player, Wichita State is the fifth-oldest team in the nation. The Schedule: vs. Northern Iowa, Wednesday; at Creighton, Saturday.

9. Oral Roberts (20-4). A Sentence: I didn’t expect ORU to win on the road at both of the Dakota States, so they take a little tumble in the Pyramid. A Statistic: For as good as it is on offense, ORU is hampered defensively. Effectively, teams make more than 50 percent of their shots against them, including 36 percent of 3-pointers. The Schedule: vs. IUPUI, Thursday; vs. Western Illinois, Saturday.

10. Gonzaga (18-4). A Sentence: Couldn’t beat BYU on the road last week, and now Saint Mary’s comes to town for what amounts as a reputation-staking game for Gonzaga. A Statistic: Robert Sacre now has a free-throw rate of 94, meaning he takes 94 percent of his field goal attempt total from the foul line. If you played a game and Robert Sacre shot 100 field goals, he’d also have 94 free throws. Easy enough, right? It’s the highest free-throw rate in the nation. The Schedule: vs. Saint Mary’s, Thursday; vs. Loyola Marymount, Saturday.

Base Blocks

11. New Mexico (19-4). A Sentence:  UNM has been blowing out teams but it also doesn’t have an impressive win in 2012 yet. A Statistic: This is, far and away, the best defensive team Steve Alford’s had at UNM. The team’s adjusted defensive efficiency is 87.7 points per 100 possessions. The only time Alford had a better team was the top-ranked squad at Iowa in 2005-06, when the 84.4 points per 100 possessions was best in the country. The Schedule: vs. Wyoming, Saturday.

12. Southern Miss (20-3). A Sentence: The Golden Eagles will be back in the NCAA tournament if they merely beat all the teams they’re supposed to beat from here on out. A Statistic: The most surprising factor to USM’s success is, this team shoots 47.1 from the field in effective field-goal percentage. That number is surprisingly low. The Schedule: at UAB, Wednesday; vs. Central Florida, Saturday.

13. Middle Tennessee State (21-4): A Sentence: Didn’t like how MTSU was thoroughly handled on the road against a decent Denver team, but I’m willing to let one loss be a cushion. A Statistic: This team has five games remaining on its schedule, by far the fewest of any Pyramid team. No BracketBusters hurts. The Schedule: vs. Western Kentucky, Thursday; vs. Arkansas Little Rock, Saturday.

14. Cleveland State (20-4). A Sentence: With Nevada losing and Gary Waters’ team continue to roll in the Horizon, it’s time to get the Vikings back in the mix. A Statistic: No Pyramid team is worse in any category than Cleveland State is at getting to the foul line. The team’s free-throw rate is 26.1 percent, third-worst in the country. The Schedule: vs. Valpo, Thursday; vs. Butler, Saturday.

15. Iona (19-5). A Sentence: The Gaels are so tempting because they’ve got guys who can score 30 with ease, dish 14 assists like it’s nothing and run so many teams out of the gym. A Statistic: Iona’s been able to win four games in a row for the first time in more than two months. The Schedule: at Loyola, Friday; vs. Marist, Sunday.

Roaming outside the Pyramid:

♦ Out this week: Nevada. In: Cleveland State.
♦ At 19-4, Ohio’s still right there.
♦ The 19-4 Wagner Seahawks are also getting closer and closer.
Posted on: February 6, 2012 12:02 pm

Podcast: The NFL hands the baton to college hoops

Duke's home loss flew under the radar yesterday. (US PRESSWIRE)
By Matt Norlander

It was a great night Andy Glockner. He's a Giants fan. Against most convention, his team won a fourth Super Bowl, and so it's only appropriate that he makes another podcast appearance today.

Glockner does bracket and bubble updates weekly for SI.com. You can check out his consistently measured and terrific work here. Follow him on Twitter if you want more soccer talk than anyone could ask for. He tends to tweet about hoops, too. And the Knicks. And the Islanders. You've been warned.
  • From the beginning: Glockner, being a huge Giants fan, gets his moment to bask. Some NFL talk before we get to the hoops, because the pod can get diverse like that.
  • 5:56: Duke went out and lost at home to Miami Sunday afternoon. It was a home loss. Did you miss it? That's because it happened while everyone was spilling chips into the bowl and finishing up the guac dip. Blue Devils know when to lose their worst games. But is Duke now out of the question to get a 2 if it doesn't run the table?
  • 8:39: Which bubble team is in pretty good shape despite its reputation and which team is in a lot more trouble than you'd be led to believe?
  • 12:42: Murray State loses one game and one game only, and that game is to Saint Mary's. Harvard finishes with two losses overall. Where would both of these teams get seeded?
  • 15:27: The committee doesn't seem to rely on KenPom all that much, yes? Why? We get into some selection committee methodology and mindset. Best part of the pod here, IMO.
  • 24:00: The Pac-12 is even more confounding than you realize.
  • 30:18: The bubble is actually not that weak this year. You wouldn't think that with a lot of drive-by commentary, but the at-large crop is better than in most recent years. Glockner explains why.

Again, I thank you for taking the time to listen to the podcast--whenever you can. I ask that you, if you like what we're doing here, encourage like-minded hoopheads to subscribe in Tunes as well. Guests like Jay Bilas, Seth Davis, they're the guys who make me sound better and make the podcast worthwhile. The other guys? Gary Parrish and Jeff Goodman, they really make it entertaining, and of course you can count on our trio show each Wednesday. The RSS feed is another way to keep the podcasts coming to you ASAP. We've got a Zune download link as well.

Get CBSSports.com College Basketball updates on Facebook   

Posted on: February 6, 2012 9:01 am

Wakeup Call: Now, college hoops takes the stage

So, this is terrific. (Via Card Chronicle)
By Matt Norlander

Get a glimpse of what it's going to be like when the robots kill us all. // If you didn't read this reaction to last night's Super Bowl, you'll find few better. // And what about those teams that lose the Super Bowl, what's the method behind the shirts and where they go? // Gregg Doyel gets in the ring. // My favorite commercial from last night. // And if you want any morning-after Super Bowl reading, I can't say it heartily enough: our writers did a damn good job ...

★ Simply incredible. Duke picks the hour before the Super Bowl kicks off to lose at home to Miami. No one even notices. That should definitively cost the Devils the 2 seed line, though.

Michigan State. I'm going to ride that team as far as Draymond Green will take us.

★ Mississippi State went out and beat Auburn Saturday, but prior to that, Auburn coach Tony Barbee got real childish about Arnett Moultrie choosing not to transfer to Auburn.

Hilarious stuff from Brett McMurphy. I should -- and heck, I will! -- mimic this for college hoops.

★ Why Signing Day cannot be stopped.

★ Nerlens Noel is not yet in college, not yet picked a school, but he's already on his way to becoming a huge, huge deal. Get to know him better.

★ The scene Gary depicts in the opening graf, I remember it very specifically. We were all killing the Frank Haith hire.

★ Could North Carolina and Maryland be starting a rivalry that will get taken to new, higher levels in the next few years?
★ The agony and ecstacy of Kansas-Missouri. I've got no stake in that rivalry but I'll continue to be nonplussed over its impending doom.

★ Do you think Colorado got off on Saturday?

★ Bo Kimble helps with coaching at a community college. I'd love to meet Mr. Kimble some day soon. Seems like a great, great guy.

★ Pat Forde wrote a pretty remarkable column that went live on Friday. If you missed it then, don't miss it now.

★ A nice gem dug up, as he's wont to do, by Luke Winn.

They Might Be Giants. Only appropriate for today.

Category: NCAAB
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