Dec 22, 2012, 11:30 AM EDT
Each day, CollegeBasketballTalk brings you the “Pregame Shootaround,” which will lay out a preview for the slate of games that night. We’ll take a look at some key match-ups and important games, as well as make some predictions and point out what you need to watch for. Take a look below at today’s edition:
Note: The weekend editions of Pregame Shootaround will be published half an hour prior to tip-off of the day’s first game.
Games of the Day:
No. 9 Kansas vs. No. 7 Ohio State (4:00 p.m. ET, CBS)
This game has a very different feel to it than the last time these two teams met on Dec. 10, 2011. No Jared Sullinger or William Buford for Ohio State. No Thomas Robinson or Tyshawn Taylor for Kansas. Instead, we have a more mature Deshaun Thomas and Lenzelle Smith, back with point guard Aaron Craft vs. Jeff Withey and star freshman Ben McLemore.
Ohio State will be cognizant of Withey around the rim, being that he’s leading the nation with 5.4 blocks per game. They’ll also be looking to Craft to lock down defensively on the perimeter to neutralize Kansas’ three-guard set of McLemore, Elijah Johnson, and Travis Releford.
Kansas is the favorite in the Big 12 this season, but this will be only the Jayhawks’ second game against a ranked opponent this season. Their first ended in a loss to Michigan State.
No. 12 Missouri vs. No. 10 Illinois (6:00 p.m. ET, ESPN2)
In Saturday’s other matchup of ranked opponents, newly legitimized Illinois faces Missouri. This will be a battle of the backcourts, with Illinois featuring D.J. Richardson, Tracy Abrams, and early Player of the Year candidate Brandon Paul vs. Phil Pressey, Keion Bell, and Oregon transfer Jabari Brown.
Brown had 12 points and three assists in his first game with the Tigers, now paired with Pressey after Michael Dixon’s days with the team came to an end. He saw 20 minutes in his first game, but look for his numbers to increase as he gets more into the fold. Laurence Bowers is still the go-to option for Frank Haith’s team.
Illinois will have to make a concerted effort to control what happens on the glass, as Missouri is second in the nation in rebounds per game. That duty will fall to everyone on the floor for the Illini, who don’t have just one dominant rebounder.
Who’s Getting Upset?: Miami against Hawaii (12:30 a.m. ET, ESPNU)
Hawaii pushed Illinois to overtime earlier this year and lost by only one point. Now, Miami travels all the way to our beautiful 50th state for a matchup with a team that rebounds well and puts a lot of points on the board. Sometimes the effects of traveling can be overstated, but the Hurricanes have traveled to Hawaii, then tip off at 12:30 a.m. ET. Not an easy task. I’ll take Hawaii in the upset.
Mid-Major Matchup of the Day: Murray State vs. Dayton (12:00 p.m. ET, CBS Sports Network)
Isaiah Canaan, Ed Daniel, and Murray State meet a tough Dayton team Saturday at noon ET. This matchup gives Dayton guard Kevin Dillard (15.0 points, 4.1 assists per game) a chance to face a nationally recognized player like Canaan. The Flyers narrowly missed out on beating Illinois State in overtime, but Daniel (16.1 points, 10.7 rebounds) will be a controlling force on the block.
Five Things to Watch
1. Temple suffered an upset to Canisius earlier this week, but there’s no rest for the weary. The Owls face No. 3 Syracuse at Madison Square Garden at noon ET, which might as well be a Syracuse home game.
2. Jabari Brown will continue to work himself into the Missouri rotation Saturday against Illinois, coming off a debut in which he put up 13 points in 20 minutes on the floor.
3. Keep an eye on No. 16 New Mexico against South Dakota State. Any time Nate Wolters is on the floor against a ranked opponent, there is a chance for an upset. It’ll be made tougher because SDSU is traveling to Albuquerque, but never count out the Jackrabbits
4. Texas inexplicably dismantled North Carolina without Myck Kabongo this week, which likely says more about UNC than it does the Longhorns, but Texas returns to the floor Saturday to face No. 20 Michigan State.
5. Whereas it was mentioned that Temple fell to Canisius this week and will have no rest, a fired-up Canisius team faces No. 21 UNLV Saturday. They might be in upset mode, but I don’t see the Runnin’ Rebels falling.
The Top 25
No. 3 Syracuse vs. Temple (12:00 p.m. ET, ESPN2)
No. 4 Arizona vs. Tennessee State (10:30 p.m. ET, ESPNU)
No. 5 Louisville vs. Western Kentucky (8:30 p.m. ET, ESPNU)
No. 7 Ohio State vs. No. 9 Kansas (4:00 p.m. ET, CBS) (See Above)
No. 8 Florida vs. Kansas State (8:00 p.m. ET, ESPN2)
No. 10 Illinois vs. No. 12 Missouri (6:00 p.m. ET, ESPN2)
No. 11 Cincinnati vs. Wright State (4:00 p.m. ET)
No. 13 Minnesota vs. Lafayette (7:00 p.m. ET, Big Ten Network)
No. 15 Georgetown vs. American (12:00 p.m. ET, ESPN3)
No. 16 New Mexico vs. South Dakota State (2:30 p.m. ET)
No. 18 San Diego State vs. San Francisco (6:00 p.m. ET, ESPNU)
No. 19 Butler vs. Evansville (2:00 p.m. ET)
No. 20 Michigan State vs. Texas (2:00 p.m. ET, ESPN2)
No. 21 UNLV vs. Canisius (10:00 p.m. ET)
No. 23 North Carolina vs. McNeese State (12:00 p.m. ET, ESPNU)
No. 24 Oklahoma State vs. Tennessee Tech (1:00 p.m. ET)
No. 25 NC State vs. St. Bonaventure (3:00 p.m. ET, ESPN3)
Other Notable Games
Murray State vs. Dayton (12:00 p.m. ET, CBS Sports Network)
LSU vs. Marquette (2:00 p.m. ET, ESPNU)
Florida State vs. Charlotte (2:00 p.m. ET, CBS Sports Network)
George Mason vs. Richmond (3:00 p.m. ET)
Kentucky vs. Marshall (4:00 p.m. ET, ESPN2)
Fresno State vs. UCLA (11:00 p.m. ET, Pac-12 Networks)
Miami (Fla.) vs. Hawaii (12:30 a.m. ET, ESPNU)
Oct 24, 2014, 12:06 AM EDT
Syracuse’s men’s basketball and football programs are under investigation, with the stakes being higher for Jim Boeheim’s program.
Oct 23, 2014, 11:20 PM EDT
Joshua Smith averaged 11.5 points per game before being ruled academically ineligible last season.
Oct 23, 2014, 10:49 PM EDT
Cam Payne became the star of Murray State as a freshman, but he wouldn’t have gotten there if he had a back up. Why?
Oct 23, 2014, 9:53 PM EDT
The preseason favorites to win the Atlantic 10 added a new teammate Thursday.
Oct 23, 2014, 8:03 PM EDT
Shawn Lester averaged 11.9 points and 4.2 rebounds per game in the sixth man role last season.
Oct 23, 2014, 6:55 PM EDT
Hallice Cooke will have one hip operated on Monday, with the second surgery coming four weeks later.
Oct 23, 2014, 5:41 PM EDT
Christian James joins Rashard Odomes and Akolda Manyang in Oklahoma’s 2015 haul.
Oct 23, 2014, 4:34 PM EDT
The OVC looks like a three-team race this season.
Oct 23, 2014, 1:57 PM EDT
Nice work editing in the music.
Oct 23, 2014, 1:38 PM EDT
Who are the top 20 perimeters in the country this season?
Oct 23, 2014, 12:04 PM EDT
This scandal will be a stain on North Carolina’s sports and academic programs for a long time.
Oct 23, 2014, 11:07 AM EDT
This is about as embarrassing as being POSTERIZED can get.
Oct 23, 2014, 9:59 AM EDT
The Shockers went to the Final Four in 2013 and undefeated in 2014. What is next for them?
Oct 22, 2014, 10:46 PM EDT
Cody Larson was South Dakotas Next Big Thing. He returned in infamy, but that has not stopped him from succeeding.
Oct 22, 2014, 10:14 PM EDT
Wisconsin held its third annual “Shooting Down Cancer” event Wednesday, with their goal being to #MakeBoPay.
Oct 22, 2014, 9:13 PM EDT
Austin Nichols is the reigning American Athletic Conference ROY, and sophomore Avery Woodson is expected to compete for minutes in a crowded by inexperienced backcourt.
Oct 22, 2014, 7:03 PM EDT
Cezar Guerrero knocked down five straight from half-court during the team’s Red and White Hoops Night event Tuesday.
Oct 22, 2014, 6:43 PM EDT
Oregon didn’t have much depth to begin with due to various personnel issues, so Michael Chandler’s lingering knee problem is a major concern.
Oct 22, 2014, 5:00 PM EDT
People don’t come more intense than Bruce Pearl.
Oct 22, 2014, 4:25 PM EDT
Given SMU’s depth on the perimeter, LaGerald Vick’s decision to move back in classes will help both parties in the future.
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