Championship Week Coverage Archive

Stag party cancelled: Siena makes comeback, heads to NCAA Tournament for third straight time

Siena faced a double-digit deficit as shots misfired, the defense was sliced, and 10,679 green and gold followers sat in their Times Union Center seats silent and confused. But does it matter? It’s Siena. The Saints are the unchallenged, two-time defending MAAC Champion. They’re going to make a run and blow out Fairfield. That run… more »

MAAC Semis and Championship coverage

New kids, Fairfield, ride senior to advance to Championship vs. Siena Fairfield was the only semifinal participant that wasn’t in at least one of the last two MAAC Championships. Matter fact, they haven’t played on MAAC Championship Monday since the 2003 season. But down the stretch, the No. 2 seed Stags looked like the experienced… more »

Purple Eagles’ experience leads to upset

Niagara come into the ’09-’10 season with high expectations. They were expected to be right behind frontrunner Siena, and were predicted to head to the MAAC Championship game behind the leadership of Tyrone Lewis. After an up-and-down campaign, the Purple Eagles might be realizing that potential at the right time. Niagara, ranked No. 6, struggled… more »

Broncos buck Saint Peter’s with strong defense

St. Peter’s rode a stingy defense to Albany in hopes of making a run at the MAAC crown. But it’s offensive inefficiency early in Saturday’s MAAC quarterfinal game prevented that defense from ever making the No. 5 seed Rider Broncos uncomfortable. Rider, led by 1st Team All–MAAC selection Ryan Thompson, displayed it’s own defensive prowess… more »

Canisius’ comeback effort low blowed, Fairfield advances

It was hard enough for No. 7 seed Canisius to make a comeback against No. 2 Fairfield at the MAAC Tournament. They were down by as many as 22 points and had a limited bench to give the starters rest. It didn’t help when the team lost its best player to ejection with 5:09 remaining… more »

Siena survives scare, advances to MAAC semis

It was a foregone conclusion that the Siena Saints would make it to the MAAC Championship. So when the No. 8 seed Manhattan Jaspers took a 16-4 lead eight minutes into the game, the 8,914 Siena fans at the Times Union Center in Albany were shocked and silent. It was one of many shocking occurrences… more »

MAAC Tournament Recap

Game 1: Broncos buck Saint Peter’s with strong defense St. Peter’s rode a stingy defense to Albany in hopes of making a run at the MAAC crown. But its offensive inefficiency early in Saturday’s MAAC quarterfinal game prevented that defense from ever making the No. 5 seed Rider Broncos uncomfortable. Rider, led by 1st Team… more »

The Heroes and Villains of Championship Week

As the calendar turns to March, America tingles with the anticipation of the Cinderella stories sure to emerge over the course of the next four weeks.  Blissfully ignorant of these “inferior leagues” these last four months, all eyes now turn to conferences like the Colonial, Horizon, and WAC. Especially if you’re a fan of a… more »

Florida State Seminoles

Good Wins: Clemson (twice), at Virginia Tech, vs. North Carolina (ACC Tournament) Bad Losses: None (worst losses were at Northwestern and at Miami) Strengths: 1. Toney Douglas. The Atlanta, GA product erupted for Florida State this season. In his senior year, Douglas averaged 21.1 points per game while running the Seminoles’ offense. He also hit… more »

Thoughts on the 2009 NCAA Tournament Bracket

This is one of the better brackets in recent memory (of course I would say that, given my projection). But top-to-bottom, Mike Slive’s Committee did a fantastic job of selection and seeding. Surprises: Boston College: A 7-seed seems a bit high for a team that lost to Harvard and Saint Louis in the non-conference portion… more »

Bracketography’s 2009 NCAA Tournament Bubble Breakdown

FINAL Update: Selection Sunday, 1:00 pm PT. Without a doubt, this is the most confusing year to try to project the bracket since I started doing this in 2001. I would have no argument with the Selection Committee on selecting ANY of the 9 teams on the “true bubble.” Locks (38): ACC: North Carolina, Wake… more »

Semifinal Saturday at the ACC Tournament

It isn’t called March Madness for nothing. Only in Conference-USA, where the Memphis Tigers look like they will never lose another game, have upsets been few and far between. “Carnage” is the only word that can adequately describe what’s been going on with the nation’s top teams this weekend throughout various conference tournaments. In the… more »

MAC Tournament Final Recap

The sweet styling of the McKnight Brothers was on display Saturday night in the MAC Tournament Final.  The toughest ticket in town was for the duet’s vibrant harmony, competently contributing to a 65-53 Akron win.  Less famous than singer Brian’s McKnight family, these brothers (junior Chris, and sophomore Brett) have more to celebrate en route… more »

Quarterfinal Friday at the ACC Tournament

Friday of Championship Week is often billed as the best day of the college basketball season, and it certainly did not disappoint in Atlanta at the ACC Tournament. Three of the four quarterfinal games were decided after the final buzzer sounded. North Carolina 79, Virginia Tech 76 With all the carnage among college basketball’s top… more »

MAC Tournament Semifinal Recap

Buffalo 64, Ball State 52 Pete Newell would have been proud.  In a league habitually dominated by backcourts, big men thrived Friday night.  Buffalo Bull junior forward Max Boudreau poured in a lucky 21, raising his career high by 50%.  Even a free fall landing him square on his back could not slow the Canadian… more »

Day 1 at the ACC Tournament

In case you’re wondering, there was basketball played outside of Madison Square Garden (site of the Big East Tournament) on Championship Week Thursday. You might not have known it while being engulfed by Syracuse’s 127-117 six-overtime win over UConn, not to mention Villanova’s buzzer-beating victory over Marquette and West Virginia’s emphatic upset over Pittsburgh, but… more »

MAC Tournament Quarterfinal Recap

Ball State 64, Central Michigan 61  An eventful overtime went to the birds.  Finally.  The Ball State Cardinals (14-16) pulled out a MAC slugfest on the strength of six Laron Frazier overtime points.  ”We have three seniors who all stepped up and made the shots to get to the next step,” said Frazier.  The final… more »

Atlantic Sun Tournament Recap

The Atlantic Sun Tournament opened play in the first week of March, declaring their champion second to the Big South.  Of course the Ivy League has no post-season tournament and therefore decides their automatic bid first. Stepping into Lipscomb University’s Allen Arena, a resplendent concert hall, it becomes immediately apparent the title sponsor is General… more »

Northern Iowa Wins MVC Bid in Thrilling Fashion

ST. LOUIS – Paraphrasing the old NCAA Tournament mantra, Northern Iowa simply knows how to survive and advance. “I think a major factor for us have been the experience this team has in close game all season,” UNI head coach Ben Jacobson said. The Panthers survived three games in three days of Arch Madness, including… more »

Illinois State Humiliates Creighton 73-49

ST. LOUIS – Both Illinois State and Creighton’s head coaches needed only one word to describe their play Saturday evening. “Wonderful, how about that,” Redbirds head coach Tim Jankovich said. Shift to Creighton head coach Dana Altman for the equal and opposite reaction. “Disappointed.” Illinois State crushed the second-seeded Bluejays 73-49 in the semi-finals of… more »

UNI Blitzes Bradley 76-62

ST. LOUIS – Northern Iowa has its swagger back. The top-seeded Panthers exuded that confidence on both ends of the floor in their 76-62 defeat of Bradley in the first semi-final of the Missouri Valley Conference. “I think that speaks to a lot of guys and different guys are making big plays down the stretch,” UNI… more »

Illinois State Overwhelms Evansville 78-68

ST. LOUIS – Less than four minutes into the game, Evansville head coach Marty Simmons turned and yelled to his assistants in very plain, simple language exactly what the problem was. “We just can’t stop them,” Simmons said. Illinois State showed consistent flashes of superior offensive firepower by eliminating Evansville with a 78-68 victory in the last quarterfinal game… more »

MVC Buzzer-Beater Controversy Ends Swiftly

ST. LOUIS – Even in a packed Scottrade Center, everyone on press row heard the yell. “Start the clock!” The scream was heard from every member of the Wichita State bench. Shortly afterwards, the ball went through the hoop, the horn blared, and the Shockers’  season was over. Creighton’s Booker Woodfox had good reason to celebrate… more »

Buzzer Beater vs. Wichita State Keeps Creighton Alive

ST. LOUIS – The blue and white faithful from Omaha can file the date of March 6, 2009 in their long basketball history as another day Booker Woodfox won the game. “Book has made a career of doing that, and so for that moment I was elated,” Creighton head coach Dana Altman said. After blowing… more »

Bradley Routs Southern Illinois 67-55

ST. LOUIS – Bradley was just too quick, too athletic and much more careful with the basketball than Southern Illinois in its dominating 67-55 win.  The Braves got 30 points in the paint mostly off dribble penetration and received 22 points courtesy of turnovers by the Salukis’ ineffective offense. “We needed to control the paint… more »

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