It’s officially Feast Week in college basketball, where ESPN uses Thanksgiving as an excuse to air a constant parade of college basketball tournaments. As you might expect, the B1G is involved in some of these, and we will bravely try to keep track of where your teams are going and who they are playing.
Rider Broncs (1-3) at Rutgers Scarlet Knights (3-1), 6 p.m., BTN
MaximumSam: No Feast for Rutgers, who will try to put a rough loss to Temple behind them by welcoming the Broncs. No typo there, Rider is the Broncs, not the Broncos. The Broncs rank 191st on Torvik and sport a 1 point loss to Providence, so perhaps not completely helpless. Danger Man is guard Dwight Murray, Jr., who leads the team in points, rebounds, assists, and steals. The man doesn’t even try to block a shot, the lazy bum. Torvik says Rutgers win, 74-61.
BoilerUp89: Rider’s lone win is over checks notes New Jersey. Pretty sure that means they have this one in the bag. In all seriousness, Rider did play Providence close in the season opener and only lost that game by one, so even though their only win is over D3 The College of New Jersey, this isn’t a gimme for Rutgers – especially if they repeat their three point shooting woes from this past weekend.
Rider fouls a lot. Their opponents are at the free throw line once every two field goal attempts. So make your free throws Rutgers.
Feast Rating: That discount apple pie your divorced uncle picked up on the way here. He tried to tear off the sticker, but half of it is still there.
BoilerUp89: I’m not divorced, but you know sometimes you just kind of forget that you promised to bring something to Thanksgiving this year other than your sparkling personality and political manifesto and you are forced to stop in at the one store that is open on Thanksgiving and pay way too much for the last pie on the shelf.
MaximumSam: So you’re the one.
Cancun Challenge, Liberty Flames (2-2) v. Northwestern Wildcats (4-0), 7:30 p.m., CBSSN
MaximumSam: The Cancun Challenge actually started last week, with Northwestern beating Purdue Fort Wayne, but that wasn’t in Cancun so perhaps it doesn’t count. Now in Cancun proper, Northwestern drew the Riviera side of the bracket, where the pool boys will be watching them take on Liberty before a game with either Bradley or Auburn tomorrow.
The Flames rank 104th on Torvik and have struggled this season, getting horse walloped by Alabama and losing to Southern Miss. Their backcourt is, ahem, short, as Darius McGhee leads the team in points and Colin Porter in assists, but they are both 5’9”. Boo Buie will just tower over these guys. Torvik says the Wildcats remain undefeated, 65-64.
Editor’s note: BoilerUp89’s Liberty preview was removed because FIFA said so.
Feast Rating: Macaroni and cheese out of a box that someone sprinkled with chili powder and called Mexican Macaroni and Cheese.
Maui Jim Maui Invitational, Ohio State Buckeyes (3-1) v. Cincinnati Bearcats (3-2), 4 p.m., ESPN2
BoilerUp89: Cincinnati played their secret scrimmage against Purdue and lost. They also lost an official game to Northern Kentucky, thus completing the Northern Kentucky season sweep of University of Cincinnati campuses (NKU beat UC-Clermont County earlier in the season). That loss for the Bearcats happened as they scored just 11 points in the second half. This probably shouldn’t be a surprise as Cincinnati’s effective field goal % is abysmal.
An underplayed in-state matchup, the Bearcats will have a chip on their shoulder for this one. Former Michigan Wolverine, David DeJulius, will also probably have some extra motivation to beat Ohio State the week of the game. Cincinnati has some good height on their roster – they just lack play making and shooting ability. Their game plan will be to limit turnovers, crash the glass and outbound Ohio State, chase shooters off the 3 point line, and hope that enough of their shots happen to go in. More likely, Wes Miller’s rebuild of the mess John Brannen left him continues and gets really difficult as the Bearcats join the Big 12 next season.
MaximumSam: Nothing like heading 4400 miles away to play a team down I-71. The Buckeyes have been all over the place on both sides of the court early in the season, so I don’t have much confidence predicting anything. One thing is for sure – they aren’t getting enough out of Justice Sueing. Sueing is from Hawaii, and scoring 6 points on 11 shots like against SDSU isn’t going to cut it.
The Bearcats feature a couple of Old Friends in David DeJulius and Rob Phinisee, although early on Memphis transfer Landers Nolley has stirred the drink. He’s leading the team in points, steals, and blocks and is shooting at a 52/41/93 pace, so someone will need to guard him. The Buckeyes can’t feel great after getting stuffed into a locker by the Aztecs – time to show they can do the stuffing. Torvik says Buckeyes by a point, 72-71.
Feast Rating: That one turkey leg that is left after dad ate the other one. Your little brother wants it, and I mean it’s a turkey leg it isn’t mind blowing or anything, but by God your little brother isn’t getting it.
25 Iowa Hawkeyes 100, Omaha Mavericks 64
Emerald Coast Classic On Campus Game
BoilerUp89: Kris Murray had a career high 30 points and looks to be exactly one year behind his twin’s development. The McCaffery brothers were the only other Hawkeyes in double figures (isn’t nepotism great, Iowa?).
Iowa shot better, outrebounded Omaha, got to the free throw line more often, turned the ball over less, and dominated from the beginning to the end of this one. It was a 21 point margin at the half. I’m looking forward to Iowa getting back to facing tournament quality teams like Seton Hall, but the rest of the Emerald Coast Classic (in Niceville, Florida later this week) may not contain a tournament team (Clemson is Iowa’s guaranteed matchup, and the other two teams are Cal and TCU).
Hawk Fans that came tonight thank you this is not @ u and this is not a complaint at all but this was probably the worst regular season crowd we have had in my career here coming off a huge road win.. we have some big games coming up please help us out with the energy you bring
— Connor McCaffery (@connor_m30) November 22, 2022
Look Connor, I hate Hawkeye fans just as much as you do. After all they live in Iowa. But after years of your dad not scheduling any good non-conference games, I can’t blame them for not showing up.
17 San Diego State Aztecs 88, Ohio State Buckeyes 77
Maui Jim Maui Invitational QF
BoilerUp89: Zed Key was plagued by foul trouble and the Buckeyes offense took a full half to wake up. The delayed start by the Buckeyes led to them being down 11 at the half and that ended up being the final margin once both teams put up 51! points in the 2nd half. Defense was nowhere to be found in the 2nd half.
Sean McNeil leads all scorers with 22 points. Freshmen Bruce Thornton and Brice Sensabaugh were the other Buckeyes in double figures with 13 and 17. San Diego State shared the ball well, with four players scoring 14 or more points. As a team, the Aztecs went 10 of 21 from three. They also stayed composed when Ohio State made their runs in the second half, and answered every single one of them.
MaximumSam: Kind of a weird game. I thought the Aztecs would give the Buckeyes all sorts of trouble with their defense, and certainly they did for a half. Then the game flipped to an up and down affair that was mostly defense free. Sean McNeil kept them in this game after being mostly invisible this season. The biggest disappointment was seeing Ice Likekele and Justice Sueing give them next to nothing. These guys combined for 11 years of experience and just 8 points. On the other hand, Brice Sensabaugh continues to be a walking bucket. The kid is fearless getting his own shot, and has been surprisingly efficient for a freshman gunner.
Minnesota Gophers 62, Cal Baptist Lancers 61 (OT)
So Cal Challenge Semifinal
BoilerUp89: Minnesota started the game out on a 15-0 run. They promptly gave up an 11-2 run to let the Lancers back into it. The Gophers would then build up another 13 point lead in the second half before blowing that as well. Cal Baptist took their first lead of the game with 4:16 left to play in overtime.
Got to say, they named this tournament appropriately for the Gophers. It is definitely a challenge. But due to a little bit of luck, the Gophers managed to escape their semifinal vs. the Lancers and advance to play for the So Cal Challenge championship! Tarran Armstrong had 22 points for the Lancers but missed his 3-pointer with 27 seconds to go that could have stretched the lead to 4 and put it out of reach for the Gophers. Instead Dawson Garcia’s late jumper was enough to put the Gophers on top.
M.N.W.: beautiful collapse, no notes