Posted on: March 5, 2012 3:35 pm

What-to-know conference previews: MEAC

Savannah State didn't waste any time making its presence felt in the MEAC. The Tigers went 14-2 in the league and earned the regular-season title, meaning they're the No. 1 seed in this week's tournament and thus the favorite to earn the league's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. Yes, that'll probably lead to an appearance in a play-in game and then, if the Tigers are a lucky, a 30-point loss to a No. 1 seed in the Round of 64. But it would still be a nice accomplshment for Horace Broadnax, the former Georgetown guard now in his seventh season at Savannah State.

Broadnax went 2-28 in his first season.

Now he's a few wins away from the NCAA Tournament.

Savannah State is taking a 13-game winning streak into the event.

In an unrelated note, North Carolina Central's Dominique Sutton is a name below who might register with you. He is indeed that Dominique Sutton -- the one who used to play at Kansas State. He averaged 16.6 points and 7.4 rebounds this season for the Eagles.


Schedule: Tuesday through Saturday in Winston-Salem, N.C.

Title game: Saturday at 1 p.m. ET on ESPN2


  • Tony Gallo (Coppin State)
  • Kyle O'Quinn (Norfolk State)
  • Darrion Pellum (Hampton)
  • Dominique Sutton (North Carolina Central)
  • Jay Threat (Delaware State)

Conference RPI: 30

KenPom.com rating: 30

Sagarin rating: 30

NCAA tournament locks: None

NCAA tournament bubble teams: None

Last NCAA tournament appearances

  • Bethune-Cookman: Never
  • Coppin State: 2008
  • Delaware State: 2005
  • Florida A&M: 2007
  • Hampton: 2011
  • Howard: 1992
  • Maryland-Eastern Shore: Never
  • Morgan State: 2010
  • North Carolina A&T: 1995
  • North Carolina Central
  • Norfolk State: Never
  • Savannah State: Never
  • South Carolina State: 2003
-- Gary Parrish
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: February 21, 2012 2:32 pm
Edited on: February 21, 2012 3:21 pm

Kyle O'Quinn sees pro future after Norfolk State

Kyle O'Quinn played just one year of high school ball. Now, he has a pro career in his future. (Mark W. Sutton/Norfolk State)

By Jeff Borzello

If you had asked Kyle O’Quinn back in high school if he thought he would have a future in professional basketball, he would have laughed at you.

After all, O’Quinn was just 5-foot-11 as a high school freshman in New York, and only played one year of high school basketball. He had just one scholarship offer coming out of high school, from the MEAC’s Norfolk State. Others were sniffing around, but no one else was willing to take a chance on the raw big man. His family didn’t want him to go to prep school, so he jumped on the opportunity to head to Virginia and play for Norfolk State.

Now, as a 6-foot-10 senior, O’Quinn is dominating on the inside. Over the last two seasons, the big man is averaging 16.2 points, 11.0 rebounds and 3.1 blocks per game. Because of his potential, he could have a future in the sport.

“I’m getting a lot of good feedback,” O’Quinn said. “I didn’t think I would play college basketball, of course not. You couldn’t have told me that.”

O’Quinn has been one of the most improved big men in the country over the course of four years, going from someone who didn’t even know the fundamentals of basketball to a player who can carry the Spartans to the NCAA tournament. He didn’t see it coming; no one saw it coming.

When O’Quinn got to Norfolk State, he had no dreams of dominating the league. He just didn’t want to be a benchwarmer.

“The basics weren’t basics to me,” O’Quinn said. “You could say pick and roll, and I would look at you like I never heard of that before.”

Because of his height, his lack of experience didn’t matter much when he first got to Norfolk. O’Quinn was thrown into the fire immediately.

“I was very raw. I never played under a coach,” he said. “In high school, we had two coaches and three parent volunteer. I had a lot of help from the seniors. I was the only freshman my freshman year here.”

O'Quinn has averaged 16.2 points, 11.0 boards & 3.1 blocks over the last two seasons. (Mark W. Sutton/Norfolk State)

As O’Quinn saw more minutes and got more experience on the basketball court, he continued to improve. From his freshman year to his sophomore year, his numbers more than doubled, going from 5.3 points and 3.4 rebounds to 11.5 points and 8.7 rebounds.

“It was just fundamentals and game situations,” O’Quinn said on what made the biggest difference in his rapid improvement. “What move to go on, what to do now, what shouldn’t I do, when to put the foot on the gas.”

Despite being one of the most productive players in the nation, O’Quinn doesn’t get a ton of attention for being the dominant big man that he is. True to his humble – and hilarious, might I add –self, though, O’Quinn doesn’t feel like he’s underrated.

“I’m in the MEAC,” he said. “It’s not one of the most televised leagues. People just need to see my name as a stat leader or a stat stuffer. It wasn’t like people were saying, ‘I can’t wait to see what Kyle O’Quinn will put up.’”

What would help O’Quinn get some national attention would be a trip to the NCAA tournament. Norfolk State rolled out to an 8-0 record in the league after beating Drexel, TCU and LIU-Brooklyn in the non-conference season. However, the Spartans have stumbled recently, losing three of their last six games. They now sit behind Savannah State in the league standings heading down the stretch.

Of course, the rest of the teams don’t have a dominant big man like O’Quinn.

“That would be great. I think a million 6-foot-10 seniors would say that,” he said. “It would be a nice mark on my career here at Norfolk State.”

What a difference five years makes. 

Posted on: February 20, 2012 11:51 pm
Edited on: February 20, 2012 11:54 pm

Night Court: Napier saves UConn's season

By Jeff Borzello

Here’s everything you need to know about Monday’s slate of college basketball games …

Game of the day: Shabazz Napier saved Connecticut’s season. After it looked like the sophomore guard wouldn’t play at all, Napier contributed key minutes and then hit a pull-up 30-footer with 0.8 seconds left in overtime to give the Huskies a 73-70 win at Villanova. Connecticut got behind by 18 points in the first half, but fought back to tie it at halftime. Jeremy Lamb went for 32 points, constantly bailing out the Huskies down the stretch. If Connecticut makes the NCAA tournament, it might look at Napier’s shot as the one that put them there.

Win to brag about: Mississippi Valley State clinched the SWAC regular-season championship in the best way possible – on a 3-pointer with under a second left by 6-foot-8 big Paul Crosby. The shot gave the Delta Devils a 56-53 win over Texas Southern, and also improved them to 15-0 in conference play. Remember, this is a team that was 1-11 in the non-league. Quite the turnaround for Sean Woods’ club.

Loss to hide from: Texas needed this one. The Longhorns, coming off a loss to Oklahoma State over the weekend, had a chance to solidify their resume with a home win over a reeling Baylor club. After getting off to a double-digit lead, they let the Bears come back on the glass – and on the scoreboard. Baylor pulled it out late, 77-72, after J’Covan Brown turned it over in the final minute. Texas’ NCAA hopes are now in trouble, while Baylor is back on the right track. Quincy Acy had 22 points and 16 rebounds for the Bears.

Player who deserves improper benefits: North Florida’s Parker Smith is gunning lately. He’s knocked down at least five 3-pointers in four of his last six games – but nothing topped his performance on Monday. The Ospreys’ guard went 11-for-17 from behind the arc – and also knocked down 9-for-9 from the free-throw line – en route to 46 points in a 75-66 win over Mercer. The loss for the Bears is their second in a row, dropping them two games behind first-place Belmont.

Player(s) who does not deserve improper benefits: There weren't too many disappointing performances tonight, although a couple caught my eye. DePaul's Jamee Crocket had taken 82 3-pointers the entire season heading into Monday night; that's slightly over three attempts per game. For some reason, he took 11 shots from behind the arc against St. John's, only making one in the loss. Meanwhile, even though Baylor won, Perry Jones struggled once again. He shot 3-for-11 from the field -- he still needs to step up in big games.

Numbers don’t lie:

  • 0: The number of Atlantic Sun wins Kennesaw State has this season, after falling just short, 73-71.
  • 0: The number of MEAC wins South Carolina State has this season, after the Bulldogs lost by one to Florida A&M.
  • 5: Delaware State has now had five games in a row decided by either one possession or in overtime. The Hornets won Monday in double overtime over Hampton.

Three other notable results:

  1. St. John’s is now in 11th place in the Big East after beating DePaul by seven. Given what the Red Storm have been through, that’s an accomplishment.
  2. It looks like Belmont will win the Atlantic Sun, after defeating USC Upstate, 88-79. The Bruins are now up by two games on Mercer with just two games left.
  3. Savannah State took a full game lead in the MEAC standings by demolishing Bethune-Cookman, who entered Monday only one game back of first.


  • Look out for Fairfield in the MAAC tournament. The Stags won their seventh straight league game by beating Marist on the road.
  • Kyle O’Quinn struggled offensively, but still grabbed 16 rebounds as Norfolk State picked up an easy win over Longwood.
  • Southern looks likely to finish second in the SWAC after improving to 11-4 on Monday, but the Jaguars are ineligible for the conference tournament and won’t thus be able to take down MVSU.
  • There was a false report claiming that Connecticut head coach Jim Calhoun would return for Saturday’s game against Syracuse. It was denied by school officials. 
More College Basketball coverage
Posted on: January 9, 2012 12:51 am

Todd Bozeman suspended after incident with player

By Jeff Borzello

Morgan State head coach Todd Bozeman has been suspended with pay after an incident involving senior guard Larry Bastfield.

According to the Baltimore Sun, athletic director Floyd Kerr notified Bozeman on Sunday night at 11 p.m. that Bozeman was to return home from Savannah, Ga. Morgan State faces Savannah State on Monday night.

Bozeman said that Kerr informed him that he was to “separate” himself from the team and have no further contact with any of his players or assistant coaches until further notice.

The incident with Bastfield occurred toward the end of Morgan State’s victory at South Carolina State on Saturday night. Bozeman said it was “accidental contact,” while eyewitness accounts told the Sun that Bozeman punched Bastfield in the face.

Bastfield told the paper that the incident was being exaggerated.

“He accidentally bumped me in the chest,” he said. “It was something that happens in the heat of the game.”

South Carolina State school president George E. Cooper reportedly notified authorities, while campus police also asked Bastfield if he wanted to press charges against Bozeman.  

Bozeman has been the head coach at Morgan State for six years after coaching at California in the 1990s. While with the Golden Bears, Bozeman admitted to paying a recruit’s parents $30,000. As a result, California had to forfeit the entire 1994-95 season and all but two games of the 1995-96 season. The NCAA also placed an eight-year show-cause order on Bozeman.

Category: NCAAB
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

More College Basketball coverage
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