Posted on: March 18, 2011 12:49 pm

Video: Duke vs. Hampton in the home

Posted by Eric Angevine

I think this guy is going to have a long trip home with his lovely wife. But it's great to see them embracing the unexpected rivalry for a couple of hours here in Charlotte.

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Posted on: March 18, 2011 8:41 am
Edited on: March 18, 2011 10:51 am

Charlotte pod ready to shift to on-court drama

Kyrie Irving looks ready to go in Charlotte

Posted by Eric Angevine

Sometimes, a prevailing attitude or emotion becomes most notable by its absence.

That's what happened this morning when I got on an elevator at the Charlotte Marriott with a couple who were conspicuously not dressed in team gear. When they began to speak to one another in German, I had an epiphany: these people had no idea what was going on here.

They don't care that Kyrie Irving is ready to play today. A discussion of Bruce Pearl's job status would likely elicit a shrug, or a puzzled smile. Their brackets aren't busted.

They were perfectly nice people, but I couldn't wait to get out of the elevator bubble and back with my people. The low-key Michiganders searching for coffee and wondering if the 1-3-1 trap can contain Scotty Hopson. The burly men in red and black Georgia golf visors. Heck, even the purple-clad people of Washington, who allegedly find me less than personable after I chose the Huskies as a possible 2nd-round upset victim a few days ago.

This pod, perhaps more than any other, has been full of off-court drama. Pearl getting a vote of no-confidence from his AD right before his first game of the tournament. Coach K springing Kyrie Irving's availability after weeks of rehab on us after we already filled out our brackets. Those are all great stories, and they've kept us occupied while we wait, but today, for a few hours, we'll shift our focus from the big picture to the small. We'll parse out who's feeling it according to our own lights. Fans of the Hampton Pirates and Long Island Blackbirds will leap, fist-pump, gyrate and pray that their teams will make history in dramatic fashion.

Thursday showed us what the rest of this month will be like. Enough waiting. We're ready.

Photo: US Presswire

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Posted on: March 17, 2011 2:43 pm

Kyrie Irving will play against Hampton

Posted by Chip Patterson

Well, it is official.  For the first time since December 4, we will get to see Kyrie Irving on the floor in a Duke uniform. Head coach Mike Kryzewski confirmed on Thursday what many had believed for some time.

"Kyrie will play tomorrow. He will come off the bench and play limited minutes," Krzyzewski said. "I don't have a set number of minutes"

What it means is that it is the first step to getting Irving back in the regular rotation. Irving has been practicing with the team for some time, but it was unsure as to whether he would return at all in the season.  Some have guessed that "limited minutes" will be anything from 15-20 minutes on the floor, but Coach Krzyzewski maintains that he will not change his gameplan for Kyrie.

The Duke fans in attendance erupted as the Blue Devils took the floor for open practice on Thursday, with Irving looking calm as he led the second team through the opening workouts. When they began running sets at the beginning of practice, Irving scared the Blue Devil faithful in attendance with a brief stumble on his first hard cut.

Irving struggled a bit early, losing the ball a few times and finding himself in the wrong place on the floor. But once he got his first bucket (to a chorus of cheers from the Duke fans in attendance), Irving fell right back into a standard rhythm.

Having Irving on the floor makes Duke a much better team, the only question is will it be enough to take the Blue Devils over the top. If the toe begins to bother him, Irving will sit. The good news is a Duke team without Irving is still the Number 1 seed in the West.

Posted on: March 12, 2011 4:14 pm
Edited on: March 12, 2011 5:42 pm

Welcome to the Dance, Hampton Pirates

Brandon TunnellYou may not remember the Hampton Pirates, but Iowa State fans do. The Pirates engineered one of the all-time great upsets in NCAA tournament history in 2001, upsetting Larry Eustachy's 2nd-seeded Cyclones 58-57.

With 68 teams getting in this year, a 15 seed might just be a warm memory, but that doesn't matter to fans of the HBCU located in Hampton, VA. The Pirates are going dancing again.

Hampton survived a 25-point explosion from Morgan State's DeWayne Jackson to claim the MEAC postseason title with a 60-55 win. Hampton's guard tandem of Brandon Tunnell (right) and Darion Pellum combined to score 32 points, including an excellent 12-14 from the free throw line, to hold onto the late lead. Danny Agbelese contributed 3 blocks in his role as defensive stopper.

Vital Statistics

Record: 24-8, 11-5
Team colors: Blue and white
We're thinking: 16 seed
Kenpom.com rating: 211
RPI: 163
Best win: Colorado State
Worst loss: Florida A&M (twice)
Notable stat: The Pirates are very good at denying the two-point bucket. Opponents average just 41 percent inside the arc against Hampton.
Most recent tournament history: 2006, lost to Monmouth in the preliminary round.

Posted by Eric Angevine

Photo: Getty Images

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Category: NCAAB
Posted on: March 11, 2011 10:29 pm
Edited on: March 11, 2011 10:36 pm

MEAC championship game preview

Todd BozemanTodd Bozeman (right) is back in the MEAC championship game. His No. 4 seed Morgan State Bears (17-13, 10-6) will take on the No. 2 Hampton Pirates (22-8, 11-5) at 2:00 p.m. ET for the league's auto-bid to the NCAA tournament. The former Cal coach has led Morgan State to the NCAA tournament in back-to-back seasons and is now seeking his third straight appearance.

Morgan State drew the unenviable task of taking on Bethune-Cookman, the team that led the MEAC at season's end with a dominant 13-3 record. One of those three losses came at the hands of Morgan State, and Bozeman's crew was able to repeat the feat and advance to the final game in the league tourney.

The Bears beat Bethune-Cookman thanks in large part to a 22-point game by reserve forward Kevin Thompson. Starters Larry Bastfield (15 points) and Dewayne Jackson (11 points) scored in double figures for the team from Baltimore, Maryland as well.

On the other side of the floor will be the Hampton Pirates, who polished off 6-seed Norfolk State in the other semifinal. The Virginia-based team relied on a 30-point outburst by Kwame Morgan II to counteract a stellar 19 point, 17 rebound, 6 block night from Norfolk State's Kyle O'Quinn. Hampton was able to draw on a deeper bench to defeat the Spartans 85-61 and advance to face Morgan State.

Title game: 2:00 p.m. ET, Saturday, March 12 (ESPN2)

MEAC tournament bracket page

Posted by Eric Angevine

Photo: US Presswire

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Category: NCAAB
Posted on: March 7, 2011 4:16 pm
Edited on: March 7, 2011 7:01 pm

MEAC conference tourney preview

It’s tough out there for the MEAC. Since the NCAA tournament expanded to 65 teams, a rotating membership of teams from the SWAC, Patriot, Southland, Big South, MEAC and other low-RPI conferences have traditionally been slotted in the “and one” format. Now that there’s a First Four, that marginalization will likely only become worse.

Nonetheless, there’s a lot of history and pride going into these games, and intriguing coaches like Fang Mitchell and Todd Bozeman will be roaming the sidelines. This season has belonged to Bethune-Cookman (20-11, 13-3). Oddly enough, all three league losses came at home against other teams in the top four seeds, meaning that B-C put up a perfect road record in conference play, but couldn’t protect their own house. With Hampton (21-8, 11-5), Coppin State (16-13, 11-5) and Morgan State (15-13, 10-6) lying in wait on the road to the auto bid, perhaps it’s better that the tournament is played in Joel Coliseum in Winston-Salem, NC, far away from the Wildcats’ home floor in Daytona Beach, FL.


Title game: 2:00 p.m. ET, Saturday, March 12 (ESPN2)

C.J. Reed of Bethune-CookmanBEST PLAYERS  

  1. C.J. Reed, Bethune-Cookman (right)
  2. Danny Agbelese, Hampton
  3. Kyle O’Quinn, Norfolk State


Conference RPI: 30

KenPom.com rating: 30

Sagarin rating: 30

NCAA Tournament Locks: None

NCAA Tournament Bubble Teams: None


Last NCAA Tournament Appearance:

Bethune-Cookman: N/A

Hampton: 2006 (71-49 loss to Monmouth)

Coppin State: 2008 (69-60 loss to Mt. St. Mary’s)

Morgan State: 2010 (77-50 loss to West Virginia)

North Carolina A&T: 1995 (79-47 loss to Wake Forest)

Norfolk State: N/A

Florida A&M: 2007 (77-69 loss to Niagara)

Delaware State: 2005 (57-46 loss to Duke)

South Carolina State: 2003 (71-54 loss to Oklahoma)

Maryland-Eastern Shore: N/A

Howard: 1992 (100-67 loss to Kansas)


Photo: US Presswire

Posted by Eric Angevine


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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com