Tuesday nights are becoming sneaky fun. Like last minute trips to the dollar theater. Don't ask me to explain the relation, it's there. You need to start figuring these things out for yourself.
Top 25 Scores
Arkansas 80, No. 2 Florida 69
These things happen in conference play . . . I guess?
No. 3 Michigan 76, No. 10 Ohio State 74 (OT)
Despite an overtime period in which only six total points were scored, this was one of the five best games of the year.
A few observations:
1. I love Aaron Craft as much as the next guy not named Dick Vitale, but he has to make sure that DeShaun Thomas touches the ball at least once on both of those last two possessions. I get that you're a competitor and a leader, but being a point guard means getting the ball in the hands of your best playmaker with the game on the line. For the Buckeyes, there's no question that guy is Thomas.
2. Craft's foul at the end of overtime is a flagrant if it happens at the 10-minute mark of the first half. I don't think it's debatable. That said, his fast break at the end of the game results in him going to the charity stripe for two shots if it happens at that same point in the game.
3. Trey Burke might be the best player in the country, but he needs to start attacking the rim more against quality opponents. For the second straight game, Buke consistently pulled up too soon once he got a step on the guy defending him. I don't hate the three-point attempts as much as some observers, but it drives me crazy to see him constantly pulling up to pass or shoot from just inside the arc when he appears to have a clear path to the basket in front of him. Keep going and make a lay-up, get fouled, or dish to an open big man; you have that ability.
4. Buckeye fans should be extremely encouraged by the performance of LaQuinton Ross. He doesn't need to do this every night, but if he can at least be a threat to do this every night then Ohio State will become that much more of a national title contender.
5. When Timmy gets hot, Timmy gets real hot.
6. I don't think I'm alone in praying for a Round III (at least) in March.
No. 8 Miami 72, Boston College 50
I'm not sure just how realistic Miami's National Championship hopes are, but there's no question that the team possesses the necessary amount of focus and maturity. Despite receiving a top 10 ranking and a level of attention they probably never saw coming, the 'Canes showed no signs of being distracted, and dominated Boston College from start to finish. It was the third time in their last five games that The U has defeated an ACC foe by more than 20 points. They improved to 9-0 in conference play and still haven't lost since Christmas Day.
No. 13 Kansas State 68, Texas Tech 59
It was another workmanlike performance from the Cats, who exercised some questionable shot selection early before settling down and doing what they do best. K-State dominated the glass to the tune of a 38-20 advantage, scoring easy baskets off misses and not allowing the Red Raiders any opportunities for second-chance points.
Other Scores of Note
North Carolina 87, Wake Forest 62
Expect the "Carolina is dangerous" talk to start back up now that the Heels have won six of seven. In the defense of those inevitable perpetrators, UNC did look fairly dangerous on Tuesday, scoring a season-high 87 points against hapless Wake Forest. Huge performances by Reggie Bullock (23 points) and James Michael McAdoo (20 points) deserve the lion's share of the credit for that.
Akron 68, Central Michigan 56
The Zips moved to 9-0 in the MAC and extended the nation's longest winning streak to 14 games. Nick Harney's alley-oop finish in the second half also made an appearance on SportsCenter's top plays at No. 6.
Florida State 56, Georgia Tech 54
Seriously, put five guys on Michael Snaer and take your chances with anybody else making a lay-up or else they're just going to keep having to update this montage.
Also, I think he took six steps before taking his first dribble.
Southern Illinois 64, Wichita State 62
In a stunning turn of events, the Shockers have now lost three straight after starting the season 15-1 and spending the bulk of the past moth ranked in the top 20. The most recent defeat for Wichita State is also the most embarrassing, as Southern Illinois entered Tuesday night alone at the bottom of the MVC standings with a 1-10 record.
Kentucky 77, South Carolina 55
Five Kentucky players scored in double figures as the Wildcats hit 27 of 44 shots and outrebounded South Carolina, 42-25. Just like with North Carolina, you're about to start hearing tons of folks talking about how scary UK is heading into March. Again, I'm not saying they're wrong. Kentucky's schedule probably isn't going to allow it to make a move into a scenario where it's a protected seed. How would you like to a be a two, three or four seed squaring off in the round of 32 against a team with three likely first round NBA draft picks? Don't talk, I'll answer: You wouldn't like it very much.