ncaab

Week 11: I watched college basketball this weekend so you didn't have to


Author: Dan TreadwayPublished: 01/18/23

Navigating a college basketball weekend is very similar to navigating a Jack in the Box menu: There’s so much there and most of it is fine (and some options could cause irreversible damage to your health and psyche). Given that the sport doesn’t really pick up until March, it’s easy to just give up altogether and just watch Josh Allen.

But fear not, for the next few weeks leading up to March, Gaming Society will be doing a roundup of all the fun, cute, tall Zach Edey things that happened from the week that was in college basketball.

A lot of the teams that are usually good kinda suck.

Louisville, Villanova, UNC, Duke and Kentucky are all teams that have won national titles in the past 10-15 years and none of them are currently ranked in the AP poll. 

So far it feels like a changing of the guard season in college basketball, with traditional 3-4 seeds like Houston and Purdue proving to be dominant through their experience (on that note, what’s your excuse UNC? Your team’s average age is like 29). 

There are two possible explanations here: 

  1. These programs are washed and we’re seeing a changing of the guard in college basketball.

  2. These programs, similar to the past 100 or so years, still have better players than just about everybody and they just need a little more time to gel.

After this weekend, with Kentucky’s upset at Tennessee despite being down key players, I’m leaning toward option 2.

Antoine Davis is the Best Player in the Nation You Haven’t Watched

The son of former Indiana coach Mike Davis, Antoine set the NCAA record for career three-pointers made on Saturday with 513. He did it in style too:

That’s good in any league. Antoine has been balling for the Detroit Mercy Titans for five years now. He’s currently leading the nation scoring more than 26 ppg, but he’s averaged at least 24 ppg all five years he’s been in school, which is insane. 

The tragic part? Detroit Mercy probably won’t make it to March. With a 7-12 record they’re firmly stuck at the bottom of the Horizon League standings. But if Antoine gets super hot in the conference tournament, we can all dream.

Get to Know a Cinderella: Florida Atlantic University

FAU basketball is doing something very unusual this season: Winning.

The Owls have been a traditional doormat in most sports but this season the men’s basketball team has been near unbeatable. Boasting a 17-1 record on the season, FAU was ranked 24 in the latest AP poll—their first time being ranked ever.

What’s the secret? The Owls boast outstanding depth, with multiple shotmakers surrounding 7’1 240 lb Russian big man Vladislav Goldin. 

Admittedly, the schedule leaves something to be desired. The Owls have two games against Power 5 teams, a win against Florida and a loss against Ole Miss. You can only play the teams on the schedule—and to their credit, the Owls are winning those games. Don’t be surprised if they become a trendy pick in March if they keep picking up dubs.

Best Buzzer Beater

UNLV bettors, I’m so, so sorry.

Zach Edey Watch

We can confirm at this juncture, Zach “Big Maple” Edey, 7’4 center for Purdue, is still the best player in the nation—and possibly the universe.

This week all he did was this:

Sure he probably could have dunked it, but who likes a showoff? 

Future I’m Taking This Week: UCLA +1100

While other bluebloods have fallen by the wayside this season, UCLA has been consistently excellent with a 16-2 record on the season and a top-five ranking. The PAC-12 doesn’t get a lot of attention during the regular season, but they’ve shown up in March in recent years. This Bruins team features multiple players that have Final Four experience, including Jaime Jaquez Jr., Jaylen Clark and Tyger Campbell. If I had to place a bet on any team today to win the national championship, I gotta go with the Bruins.


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