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January 18, 2013
Richmond High School


There are some big college basketball games this weekend you won’t want to miss. 

#17 Missouri (13-3, 2-1 in SEC)  @ #10 Florida (13-2, 3-0 in SEC)

It is still going to some getting used to saying Missouri is in the SEC.   The Tigers will be without F Laurence Bowers with a sprained right MCL.  Bowers leads the team in scoring at 16.8 ppg.  How will the Tigers respond will be the question.  Phil Pressey (12.9 ppg) and Jabari Brown (13.9 ppg) will have to take up the scoring load.  Missouri is an outstanding rebounding team (43.8 rpg).  The Gators are always tough at home.  Kenny Boynton (13.2 ppg) and Erik Murphy (12.3 ppg) lead the team in scoring.  Florida is good on defense allowing only 64.4 ppg and 38% field goal percentage.


#8 Syracuse (16-1, 4-0 in Big East) @ #1 Louisville (16-1, 4-0 in Big East)

Syracuse will have to learn to play without F James Southerland who is academically ineligible.  Southerland provided much more than scoring (13.6 ppg), he provided an inside game that will be hard to replace on both ends of the floor.  But there is still plenty in the tank as guard Brandon Triche (14.1 ppg) and CJ Fair will provide the scoring pinch (13.6 ppg).   The Syracuse zone will provide Louisville with some problems as the Orange allow only 56 ppg and 39% field goal shooting.   The Syracuse defense also blocks over seven shots per game.   The Cardinals are number one because of their defense.  They average over 11 steals per game and allow only 35% field goal shooting on defense.  They are led in scoring by Russ Smith at 18.9 ppg.  This will be a great Big East match-up Saturday.


#21 Oregon (15-2, 4-0 in the PAC 12) @ #24 UCLA (15-3, 5-0 in the PAC 12)

A great battle in the PAC 12.  The Bruins are led by Freshman Shabazz Muhammed (18.4 ppg) as well as Jordan Adams (15.6 ppg) and Travis Wear (12.3 ppg).  Guard Larry Drew III is the floor leader at 8.1 assists per game.  The Bruins are winning with defense allowing only 62 ppg on 39.6% shooting and 8 steals per game.  The Ducks basketball team reminds me of their football team, speed and quickness.  They don’t have one dominant scorer so they will spread it around.  Damyean Dotson leads the team in scoring at 12 ppg.  Oregon averages over 9 steals per game but still gives up 68 ppg.  


#11 Ohio State (13-3, 3-1 in Big Ten) @ #18 Michigan State (15-3, 4-1 in Big Ten)

A great early season match-up in East Lansing.  The Buckeyes are led by Big Ten scoring leader Deshaun Thomas (20.3 ppg).   Aaron Craft is the floor leader.  The Spartans are led by Guard Keith Appling (13.7 ppg) and Hoosier native Gary Harris (12.4 ppg).  Both teams can score and both can defend.  Ohio State is at 74.6 ppg, Michigan State scores at 70.9.  The Buckeyes allow only 58.5 while the Spartans are at 57.8 ppg on defense.


#8 Gonzaga (17-1) @ #13 Butler (15-2)

The Butler Bulldogs know how to beat good teams, just ask Indiana and North Carolina.  Gonzaga is well deserving of their #8 ranking as they play smart, fundamental basketball.  They average over 80 ppg and shoot 51% from the floor.  On defense the Bulldogs allow only 63 ppg on 41% shooting.  Seven foot forward Kelly Olynyk leads Gonzaga in scoring and has nice long hair!   The Butler Bulldogs will be without a key ingredient, shooting guard Rotnei Clark with a sprained neck.  That means Butler must find 16 ppg from someone else.  The Butler Bulldogs shoot at a 46% clip and score 72.5 ppg.   Center Andrew Smith has had three straight scoring outings of 24, 13 and 15.

Other games to watch:

#4 Kansas @ Texas

#7 Arizona @ Arizona State

Oklahoma @ Kansas State

#25 Marquette @ Cincinnati

#15 San Diego State @ Wyoming

Rutgers @ #20 Notre Dame

#2 Indiana @ Northwestern

Clemson @ #14 NC State

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