12:52 a.m.: What a first day for the 2010 NCAA Tournament! Three overtime games, including BYU’s thrilling double-overtime win against Florida. Five double-digit seeds advance, including No. 14 Ohio and No. 13 Murray State.
Yes, my bracket is pretty messed up, but who cares? This is what the NCAA Tournament is all about. One game, win or go home. If the rest of the tourney is as exciting as today was, this is going to be a great few weeks.
12:51 a.m.: New Mexico holds off No. 14 Montana to advance to the second round against No. 11 Washington.
12:45 a.m.: If New Mexico can hit its free throws, the Lobos will avoid the upset.
12:39 a.m.: Anthony Johnson hits his first shot of the game to pull Montana within one, but N.M. is back at the free-throw line.
12:36 a.m.: Two minutes to play, New Mexico leads by three. Will the Lobos join the Hoyas on the sidelines?
12:34 a.m.: Montana’s only player who averages double figures, Anthony Johnson, is 0-for-11 from the floor and 2-of-4 from the line, but the Grizzlies are still in the game, down just three to New Mexico. Center Brian Qvale has had the game of his life, posting a career-high 26 points and 12 rebounds.
12:32 a.m.: Wake Forest pulls out the win. Texas misses two free throws with 10 seconds to play, and Ishmael Smith pulls up for a game-winning jump shot. Wake wins 81-80. Smith is a legitimate player.
12:30 a.m.: This Texas-Wake game is the third overtime game of the first day of the tourney. That is more overtime games than all of last year’s tournament.
12:26 a.m.: New Mexico has gone into a scoring funk and leads Montana by only three, 53-50, with five minutes to play.
12:25 a.m.: Damion James fouls out for Texas on a really bad call. Of course, James was the beneficiary of a questionable call at the end of regulation, so I guess that is fair. Texas leads 78-76 with 35 seconds left.
12:22 a.m.: Wake’s point guard Ishmael Smith is so quick. He can get into the paint any time he wants to. He is a jump shot away from being a first-round draft pick.
12:19 a.m.: Only two games remaining. Texas and Wake are battling in overtime in one of them. It looks like the Longhorns have finally started to make a move, leading 76-70.
12:17 a.m.: Tennessee becomes the first No. 6 seed to advance.
Texas is up six in overtime after back-to-back 3s.
Montana has pulled within five of New Mexico.
12:15 a.m.: Tennessee wins, beating San Diego State 62-59.
In case you were wondering, Montana trails No. 3 New Mexico by nine points with 10:18 to play.
Texas and Wake are in OT. Can the Longhorns win this one?
12:12 a.m.: Somehow, someway, the Texas-Wake Forest game is going to overtime. Texas has looked suspect this game, but they have found a way to get into OT. Let’s see what they can do.
12:11 a.m.: Wow, Texas just got bailed out. Damion James drove to the hoop and was able to draw a questionable foul.
12:08 a.m.: Tennessee and Wake are both trying to hang on by making free throws.
12:07 a.m.: Two great games here. A Wake defender blocks a Texas dunk attempt and Wake now has the ball, leading by one with 13 seconds left.
Tennessee is also in the final 30 seconds, leading by one.
12:04 a.m.: Tennessee-SDSU and Texas-Wake are both coming down to the wire. Texas just hit a contested 3 with less than a minute left to tie the game at 67. Could Texas actually win this game?
Meanwhile, Tennessee is up three, but SDSU is going to the line.
12:01 a.m.: Texas is down only one to Wake, but Wake just looks better. They look like a better “team” than Texas does.
11:56 p.m.: Tennessee has been leading for most of this second half, but San Diego State is right there. A quick look at the stat sheets reveals unusually similar numbers. This one is going down to the wire. Right now, Tennessee leads 53-50 with 3:32 remaining.
Texas and Wake are also taking it to the end. Wake currently leads 64-60 with 3:51 to play.
New Mexico and Montana and underway in the second half. N.M. leads 36-32.
11:50 p.m.: Kansas has expanded its lead over Lehigh to 20 points. Texas is having trouble staying with Wake Forest. We were wondering which of these talented teams would show up and it looks like Wake is the team.
11:46 p.m.: On the season, Texas has the 26th best two-point field goal percentage defense in the country. Yes, Wake is shooting 45 percent against them.
11:43 p.m.: Texas has pulled with four of Wake, but the Horns are really having trouble consistently getting good looks.
11:39 p.m.: Kansas is so deep it’s silly. They just keep bringing guys off the bench who can contribute. They must have 10 players who could start for most teams around the country. The Jayhawks are starting to pull away, leading Lehigh 68-53 with 8:27 remaining.
11:37 p.m.: Tennessee’s off-the-ball defense has been terrible this game. The Vols are allowing face cuts, not rotating, and giving up layups on second and third passes. The Vols do still lead 44-43.
11:31 p.m.: Tennessee looks much better this half. The offense looks to have a purpose. San Diego State’s offense is all one-on-one. Tennessee’s Wayne Chism just picked up his third foul with 12:34 to play. The Vols need his leadership on the floor.
11:26 p.m.: Wake Forest leads Texas 50-40. Wake is shooting 50 percent from the field. How can a team as talented as Texas allow an opponent to shoot 50 percent?
11:22 p.m.: I am going to give Tennessee-San Diego State another shot. But I’m not going to sit on this game if it’s dull.
11:20 p.m.: Tennessee leads San Diego State by three and Wake Forest leads Texas by eight early in the second half.
Lehigh keeps scoring just enough to stay close, but it trails Kansas by 11, 50-39.
11:16 p.m.: Montana continues to do work in the paint. The size and girth of the Grizz are real issues for New Mexico.
11:14 p.m.: Kansas is attacking on offense, but Lehigh is hitting just enough shots to stay within striking distance. Kansas leads 41-32.
11:10 p.m.: All three games that are at the half are about to get underway. Meanwhile, Montana is playing very well against New Mexico, leading 18-17.
10:58 p.m.: Montana has brought the beef. They have a 6-foot-11 player and a seven-footer on the court at the same time. They are doing damage against the interior of New Mexico’s defense, helping Montana to an early one-point lead.
10:53 p.m.: Tennessee leads San Diego State 34-26 at the half.
Meanwhile, New Mexico is leading Montana 13-11. I forgot that Steve Alford is the coach of New Mexico. Montana is really trying to work their offensive possessions, while N.M. appears to be trying to shoot as quickly as possible.
10:51 p.m.: Texas and Wake go to the half with Texas leading 38-37.
Kansas leads Lehigh 35-29, also at the half.
10:47 p.m.: No. 3 New Mexico and No. 14 Montana are underway in San Jose. N.M. leads 8-7 early on.
10:45 p.m.: Texas takes its biggest least of the game — two points, late in the first half. Meanwhile, Lehigh is down only one to Kansas.
10:43 p.m.: Lehigh with a terrific response to the Kansas run. Kansas leads by two with 3:24 to play in the first half. Can the Patriot League do it again to the Jayhawks? In 2005, Bucknell upset No. 3 Kansas 64-63 on this very same floor.
10:39 p.m.: Tennessee is leading by two, but the game is boring me. I can’t believe a Volunteer game is so boring. Anyway, on to Texas and Wake Forest. Wake leads by one.
10:32 p.m.: Tennessee and San Diego State are both running some good offense. The Vols are leading by one with 6:14 to go in the first half. Tennessee has yet to break out its full-court press.
10:27 p.m.: Something to watch in the Tennessee-San Diego State game is offensive rebounding. SDSU is the seventh-best offensive rebounding percentage team, while Tennessee is ranked 191st. SDSU is up 14-13.
10:22 p.m.: San Diego State leads Tennessee early 14-10. No. 6 seeds are 0-2 today. Can Tennessee break that trend?
10:20 p.m.: Kansas is picking it up on the defensive end. The Jayhawks seem like they have woken up. Meanwhile, Wake Forest has increased its lead over Texas to 11 points. There is so much to like about Texas, and also so much to dislike.
10:16 p.m.: Wake Forest leads Texas 15-7. The Longhorns have absolutely no identity, but tons of talent. They play like a bunch of guys who have never played with each other. If they could only put it together.
10:13 p.m.: Lehigh is leading Kansas 10-4 six minutes in. I don’t think they can keep it up for very long, but I also did not think Ohio had a chance against Georgetown, so what do I know?
10:10 p.m.: Wake Forest is up 9-5 on Texas, but I want to take a look at Kansas and Lehigh. I’m pulling for Lehigh, but I think they are going to have a little trouble with Kansas. I think.
10:09 p.m.: Well, this year’s tourney is certainly not short on excitement. Two No. 6 seeds have lost (Notre Dame and Marquette), one No. 4 team has gone down (Vanderbilt), and one No. 3 has already hit the road (Georgetown).
The Big East is a disappointing 1-3, with its only win being No. 2 Villanova’s overtime victory over Robert Morris.
10:06 p.m.: No. 11 Washington has upset No. 6 Marquette in San Jose, 80-78. This was a fun one to watch.
10:03 p.m.: Kansas-Lehigh and Texas-Wake Forest are both underway. We can check on those games after the end of the Marquette-Washington game. There are just 1.7 seconds left, Washington leads by two.
10:02 p.m.: Washington’s star, Quincy Pondexter, drives to the basket for the go-ahead two with one second to play. Where is the help defense? No one from Marquette rotated over to help on Washington’s best player.
10:00 p.m.: Marquette and Washington are tied with one minute to play.
9:57 p.m.: Do you want to know what wins close game? It’s defensive rebounding. The defensive possession does not end until you get the ball. I have seen several games today where teams have been unable to control the defensive glass late in games and, as a result, have been unable to put teams away.
9:49 p.m.: Marquette and Washington are tied with just over three minutes to play.
9:46 p.m.: I like good defense, but there is something about this Marquette-Washington game that I absolutely love. I love how both teams are sprinting on every possession. O-ffense! … O-ffense!
9:39 p.m.: If you have Georgetown making the Final Four, I’m sorry. I’ve lost Final Four teams in Round 1 and it does not feel good. But that’s why the NCAA Tournament is so much fun — no one knows what’s going to happen.
9:37 p.m.: And now back to Marquette-Washington. Marquette had a 15-point lead, but the Huskies have created a few turnovers to get back into this one. Marquette leads 64-58.
9:33 p.m.: The story of the night is Ohio. The Bobcats lead almost the entire game by double digits and finally beat Georgetown 97-83. Wow, I did not see that coming. The Hoyas gave up 97 points to a team that averages just more than 65 a game. Congrats to Ohio.
9:29 p.m.: The Kentucky game is over. The Wildcats posted triple digits.
9:28 p.m.: It’s over in Oklahoma City. No. 9 Northern Iowa with the victory over No. 8 UNLV. That was a good, close game throughout.
9:25 p.m.: Northern Iowa with a dagger. A very long (beyond NBA range) 3-pointer gives UNI a three-point lead with about one second to play. What a shot.
9:22 p.m.: Ohio had a losing record in the MAC this season, yet they are about to score 90 points against the Hoyas, in Providence, no less.
9:20 p.m.: Northern Iowa takes its final timeout with 1:22 to play. That could come back to haunt them.
9:19 p.m.: Get on the floor! Great effort for a loose ball in the UNLV-UNI game. I counted six players on the floor fighting for that ball. That is what the tourney is all about.
9:17 p.m.: UNLV pulls to within one with less than three minutes to play. The Rebels’ press forces Northern Iowa to burn another timeout. UNI only has one timeout remaining with a lot of time left.
9:15 p.m.: CBS has finally put the Georgetown-Ohio game on in Boston. Enjoy the ending. Northern Iowa leads UNLV by three points with 3:00 to play.
9:12 p.m.: The Hoyas are on a run. They now trail by only nine points with 6:38 to play.
9:10 p.m.: The UNLV and Northern Iowa game is going down to the wire. UNI leads by one with 4:00 to play.
9:08 p.m.: Wait a second. I have the Hoyas going to the Elite Eight. Come on guys, step it up! Ohio leads by 12 with 7:22 to play.
9:06 p.m.: How many people are sweating bullets about Georgetown? There must be a ton of people who have them as either an Elite Eight or Final Four team.
9:04 p.m.: Ohio has turned Georgetown over 15 times and shot 11-of-20 from beyond the arc. Ohio leads by 16 with 8:22 to play. Bassett has 25 for the Bobcats.
9:02 p.m.: Northern Iowa is trying to separate from UNLV, but the Rebels press leads to five quick points. UNI leads 58-54.
9:01 p.m.: More great ball movement by Ohio leads to an open jumper. Georgetown needs to step up its defense. Ohio leads 71-55.
8:59 p.m.: I have not watched one second of the Kentucky game, but it does not look like I’m missing much. The Wildcats are leading 85-50 with 8:49 to play.
8:57 p.m.: Greg Monroe just picked up his third foul with 12:05 to go. He picked up a loose ball on the defensive end and dribbled it coast-to-coast. Unfortunately, he ran over an Ohio defender who was waiting for him at the block. Monroe has great skill, but he should have given that one off to a guard. Ohio leads by 17 — seriously.
8:54 p.m.: Now that the Marquette-Washington game is at the half, I can check in on the UNLV-Northern Iowa contest. Looking at the numbers, it seems like the second half is being played more slowly than the first, which is good for Northern Iowa. They lead UNLV 53-48 with 8:30 to play.
8:51 p.m.: Ohio just keeps scoring. The Bobcats lead the Hoyas 61-44 with 13:40 left.
8:49 p.m.: Marquette leads Washington 43-42 as the teams go to the half. I’m tired just watching these kids.
It did not count because it was after a 24 second violation, but Washington’s Isaiah Thomas just hit a three-quarters-court shot that the crowd loved.
8:42 p.m.: Marquette and Washington keep running like madmen, but the scoring has toned down a little bit. Washington is currently leading 41-36.
8:40 p.m.: Woooo! A Bobcat just picked a Hoya pocket, then threw a beautiful alley-oop pass to a teammate on the 2-on-1 break. Ohio is still playing with more energy.
8:36 p.m.: Georgetown and Ohio have begun play in the second half. I am interested to see if Ohio tries to slow this game down now that it has a lead, which is currently at 14.
8:33 p.m.: UNLV and Northern Iowa are underway in the second half. UNI leads by one. I was going to check the game out, but I cannot turn away from this Marquette-Washington game. It’s too exciting.
8:31 p.m.: The Marquette-Washington game reminds me of one of the reasons why this tournament is so great: different styles of play.
These two particular teams are both offensive-minded, so this should be a high-scoring game. But this tournament features teams that play fast, teams that slow it down, teams that press and teams that only play zone defense. I love watching the different styles of play, especially when two contrasting styles are going head-to-head.
8:24 p.m.: Marquette and Washington are both on fire. The two teams are a combined 11-of-15 from 3-point land. Can they keep that up?
8:21 p.m.: Washington and Marquette look like they are running sprints out there. This game is being played at a very fast pace. I would give a score, but it changes every three seconds.
8:18 p.m.: Breaking news: Kentucky is good. The Wildcats have a 54-26 halftime lead over East Tennessee State, even though John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins have combined to take only three shots. This is a young, talented Kentucky squad.
8:15 p.m.: Wow. I can’t believe Ohio has 48 points at the half. I don’t think John Thompson III is going to be happy with his team’s effort. Georgetown needs to open the second half with much more urgency.
8:12 p.m.: Marquette-Washington could be a high-scoring affair. Marquette commits very few turnovers and shoots the 3 very well (sixth best in the country). Meanwhile, Washington likes to speed up the tempo and play a high-scoring game. Marquette is not normally an up-tempo team, but they can be sped up because they have so many offensive-thinking players. Marquette leads 18-17.
8:07 p.m.: No. 6 Marquette and No. 11 Washington are underway in the first half. Washington leads 15-12. I’m going to check in on this game and report back.
8:06 p.m.: UNLV and UNI just went to the half. The Rebels lead 36-35 and have done a good job of getting Northern Iowa to play a little more quickly than they would like.
8:03 p.m.: Ohio is playing like the favorite in this one. Someone needs to tell the No. 3 Hoyas that this is not a double-elimination tournament. Ohio is playing terrific team basketball, really passing the ball well. The Bobcats lead the Hoyas 41-28. Yes, the ninth-best team in the MAC is on pace for 100 points.
7:58 p.m.: Ohio continues to shoot very well. They have even pressed a few times. The Bobcats have started this game quickly, while the Hoyas have yet to get into the game. Ohio started the game with a real sense of urgency. The question is whether or not it can keep it up. Right now the Bobcats lead Georgetown 33-22.
7:53 p.m.: Ohio has started very strongly against Georgetown. The Bobcats are 4-for-9 from beyond the arc and lead the Hoyas 25-18. Ohio is not a great team. It finished the regular season ninth in the MAC, but won the conference tournament title.
7:51 p.m.: Northern Iowa’s seven-foot center Jordan Eglseder is playing well. He has nine points and five rebounds already.
7:48 p.m.: UNLV continues to apply pressure after every made basket. It will be interesting to see how it affects Northern Iowa in the second half. Northern Iowa is leading 27-26.
7:43 p.m.: Good action between Northern Iowa and UNLV. The Rebels are leading 24-20 with 7:30 to play in the first half. UNLV’s defense appears to be giving the slower Northern Iowa some problems. Northern Iowa only has four losses on the season, but they do not have any great wins.
7:39 p.m.: Ohio has come out hot. Armon Bassett has seven quick points for Ohio, as it leads Georgetown 11-10.
7:34 p.m.: Kentucky is already flexing its muscles, leading East Tennessee State 21-10, shooting 7-of-11 from the floor. This one could get ugly.
7:30 p.m.: Ohio comes out in a zone, which is a good idea. The Bobcats do not have the athletes to match up with the Hoyas. Georgetown must be patient against this 2-3 zone.
Ohio has an early 8-2 lead.
UNLV leads Northern Iowa 18-12.
Kentucky leads East Tennessee State 19-10.
7:27 p.m.: Georgetown just tipped off in Providence, against Ohio. The Hoyas should not have any trouble in this one.
7:25 p.m.: UNLV’s full-court press does seem to be speeding up Northern Iowa. UNI needs to make sure it keeps this a half-court game.
7:21 p.m.: Coming up, we have Marquette-Washington and Georgetown-Ohio.
7:20 p.m.: The Butler game has mercifully ended, with the Bulldogs easily defeating UTEP 77-59.
UNLV and Northern Iowa have tipped off in what should be a good 8 vs. 9 game. UNLV has an early 8-7 lead.
Kentucky is also underway, but that should not be much of a game.
6:49 p.m.: What has gotten into Butler? The Bulldogs are shooting lights out in the second half. Butler’s Shelvin Mack has six 3s in the second half. UTEP is trying to pick up the pace, but it cannot score enough to initiate its press.
6:45 p.m.: Butler is controlling the tempo of this game. UTEP averages 72 points per game, but only has 39 points through 30 minutes.
6:41 p.m.: Butler is imposing its will on UTEP. The Bulldogs have stretched their lead to 12 behind good ball movement and solid defense. The UTEP players are starting to hang their heads a little, but there is still plenty of time left.
6:37 p.m.: Butler’s defense is really starting to sag down on UTEP’s big men. UTEP needs to get something going from the perimeter.
Butler’s Shelvin Mack just hit his fourth 3-pointer of the second half. The Bulldogs might be starting to pull away, now leading 47-37.
6:31 p.m.: UTEP is a huge team. Its best big man, Derrick Character, just picked up his third foul.
Butler is playing much better in this second half. The Bulldogs had 27 points in the first half and already have 15 points just five minutes into the second half. Butler leads UTEP 42-37.
6:25 p.m.: Butler has started the second half on fire, with three straight 3s. This Bulldogs team is actually not a great 3-point shooting team, sitting at 169th in the country.
6:22 p.m.: Butler and UTEP are back in action at the beginning of the second half. Both of these teams entered the game hot. Butler has won 20 consecutive games, while UTEP has won 16 of its past 17.
6:16 p.m.: While Butler and UTEP are at the half, let me tell you about a player to keep an eye on this evening: Montana’s Anthony Johnson. Johnson scored 42 points in the Big Sky Championship game against Weber State. He is averaging 19.6 points per game and is the only Montana player who scores in double digits. However, Johnson is not a ball hog. In fact, he shoots 51 percent from the field and 46 percent from beyond the arc. No. 3 New Mexico will need to stop him if they hope to avoid going home early.
6:10 p.m.: Looking ahead, the biggest game of the evening may actually be the one going on right now between No. 5 seed Butler and No. 12 UTEP. The Miners have the look of a Sweet 16 team.
Besides that, the most interesting matchup of the night is No. 8 seed Texas playing No. 9 Wake Forest. Both of these teams are extremely talented. You do not normally see several future NBA first-round draft picks on the floor in an 8-9 game.
Who is on upset alert the first evening of the Tourney? How about both of the 6-seeds, Marquette and Tennessee. One 6-seed has already fallen today (Notre Dame). Will they be the only one?
6:04 p.m.: There is currently only one game going on — No. 5 seed Butler and No. 12 UTEP. We will get to that in a minute. But first, how about a quick recap of this afternoon’s action?
The biggest upset so far is No. 13 Murray State knocking off No. 4 seed Vanderbilt. A lot of people, myself included, picked this upset, but it is still a great win for the Racers.
Old Dominion also upset No. 6 seed Notre Dame earlier, but that is not nearly as big of a story.
The biggest story of the day just might be a non-upset, as No. 2 Villanova survived Robert Morris’ upset bid with a win in overtime.
5:53 p.m.: No. 10 St. Mary’s pulls off a mild upset, knocking off No. 7 Richmond 80-71 in the day’s second game from Providence.
If you haven’t seen Gaels big Omar Samhan, you’d better tune in on Saturday, because he could give Villanova fits. The 6-foot-11 California native dropped 29 points and grabbed 11 boards in his squad’s win over Richmond.
5:44 p.m.: Kansas State finishes off its 82-62 pasting of North Texas. Despite 28 points from North Texas guard Tristan Thompson, the No. 2 Wildcats move on thanks to four players scoring in double figures. Denis Clemente had 17 to lead the way. They’ll face BYU on Saturday in the second round.
5:35 p.m.: Greetings, college hoops crazies. Starting now and heading well into the evening, we’ll be covering everything worth knowing about the ongoing NCAA Tournament.
Here are all the games we’ll be following from now until then.
No. 15 North Texas vs. No. 2 Kansas State, 2:40 p.m.
No. 10 Saint Mary’s vs. No. 7 Richmond, 2:50 p.m.
No. 12 UTEP vs. No. 5 Butler, 4:45 p.m.
No. 9 Northern Iowa vs. No. 8 UNLV, 7:10 p.m.
No. 16 East Tennessee State vs. No. 1 Kentucky, 7:15 p.m.
No. 11 Washington vs. No. 6 Marquette, 7:20 p.m.
No. 14 Ohio vs. No. 3 Georgetown, 7:25 p.m.
No. 16 Lehigh vs. No. 1 Kansas, 9:30 p.m.
No. 9 Wake Forest vs. No. 8 Texas, 9:35 p.m.
No. 14 Montana vs. No. 3 New Mexico, 9:40 p.m.
No. 11 San Diego State vs. No. 6 Tennessee, 9:45 p.m.
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