Having to go to overtime to beat New Hampshire is nothing to brag about, but a) winning is almost always better than losing and b) there were two really interesting stats in this game.
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First, though Steve Donahue is a three-point happy coach, his team shot just 2-22 - and both of them came in overtime. Sometimes you just have to keep firing and hope they eventually go in. For B.C., they went in at exactly the right time.
And secondly, and much more importantly, Ryan Anderson appears to have recovered his early season form: he shot 10-15 from the floor and grabbed 19 rebounds, including eight offensive. A lot of those came on missed threes.
We know it's New Hampshire and not a powerhouse team, but 23 points and 19 rebounds is hard to do no matter who you're playing against. That he appears to have recovered from his ankle injury is great news for B.C.
Dennis Clifford, who is recovering from his own injury, didn't play.
On the outside it was ugly, but Donahue found some good things in the win: âI thought this was one of the most gutty and gritty games weâve played and it is something we talk about all the time. We donât make a 3 in regulation and we got our butts kicked on the offensive glass in the first half. We played really good team defense against a terrifically coached, experienced basketball team, which is a hard thing for us to do at this point in our development.â
One of the shrewdest things Jim Valvano did was to put his show on at 11:30. It's a tradition State has kept through the years and we end up watching on occasion just because it's on after the news.
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So we watched it Sunday night and really got caught up in the highlights. They clearly had some issues earlier, but against Norfolk State, they were doing some great things. The ball movement was really excellent and the passes were made with great confidence. We were impressed. Yes, we realize that those were highlights and they're not likely to include a lot of mistakes. But still: it's an athletic group and they were playing smart, unselfish basketball.
Here's a kick in the head: Richard Howell, the major inside presence, is shooting 66.7%, and obviously gets most of his points around the basket. So he's got the best shooting percentage on the team, right?
Wrong. It's freshman T.J. Warren, who's shooting nearly 70%, and 63.6% from three point range.
For some reason, though, he's under .500 from the line at just 48%. Still, Scott Wood is supposed to be the pure shooter and he's at just 39.7%.
A lot of Wake fans are on record as being unhappy with Jeff Bzdelik's progress. But he still has A.D. Ron Wellman in his corner. Perhaps doing a bit of crisis management, Wellman sat down with Dan Collins and discussed the program.
Who knows? When Coach K showed up, a lot of people wanted to run him out of town after his third year. Maybe Wellman is way ahead of the curve.
Tough break for Virginia Tech, literally, as reserve Marshall Wood has a broken bone in his left foot. That leaves the Hokies with just seven players going forward.