Saturday, March 01, 2008

As Johnny Carson used to say, there was some "weird, wild stuff" going on today in Big 12 and Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) men's basketball action.

Heading the list is how Big 12 rivals Texas A&M and Texas Tech responded against their respective Saturday opponents after Wednesday evening's 98-54 Aggie rout of the Red Raiders. The statistical principle of regression toward the mean would have suggested that A&M's offensive performance would come back down to earth a bit, whereas Tech's would improve to some degree. A&M and Tech indeed saw their offensive performances move in the expected directions, but I don't think anyone could have anticipated how drastically this would happen.

Playing today at Oklahoma, Texas A&M was outscored 28-10 in the first half and 64-37 for the game. According to this article:

The Sooners set what is thought to be an NCAA record for the longest time holding an opponent scoreless, since the advent of the shot clock in 1986, by blanking Texas A&M for 16 minutes and 12 seconds. The record entering this season was 13 minutes and 53 seconds, set by Utah State against Idaho on Feb. 15, 2006.

Texas A&M's 10 first-half points set a Big 12 record for the fewest points scored in a half of a conference game and a school record for fewest points in a half in any game.

In contrast, Texas Tech put on a 16-1 run spanning parts of both halves against No. 5 Texas to turn a 36-30 Longhorn lead into 46-37 Red Raider edge. Texas Tech had to hold off a furious Texas comeback attempt at the end, but did so successfully for an
83-80 upset win (play-by-play sheet).

As if that weren't enough for one conference, Oklahoma State outscored Nebraska 21-5 in beating the Huskers 77-63.

The ACC also saw some interesting streak-related developments...

Down 61-44 at Boston College, North Carolina unleashed a 32-8 spurt to go ahead 76-69; the Tar Heels ultimately won, 90-80 (second-half play-by-play sheet).

Elsewhere, NC State led for much of the second half against Duke, but failed to close the deal as the Blue Devils came back for an 87-86 win. The Wolfpack made its first 18 free-throw attempts and at a later point was 22-of-23. With Duke staging a comeback, however, NC State hit only 3 of its final 6 free throws, thus finishing 25-of-29 from the stripe (play-by-play sheet). Overall, the Wolfpack's free-throw percentage against the Blue Devils (.862, compared to .712 coming into the game) was quite good. Duke only needed a narrow window of opportunity, though, and NC State's final misses provided that window.

No comments: