BOYS BASKETBALL SCORES
|WAYNE TRACE (OHIO)||62||WOODLAN||44|
|PROVISO WEST (ILL.) TOURNAMENT|
|ST. RITA (ILL.)||91||BOWMAN ACADEMY||34||R1|
|HAMMOND CENTRAL||83||CHICAGO BOGAN (ILL.)||72||R1|
|WABASH VALLEY TOURNAMENT|
|WEST VIGO||71||MARSHALL (ILL.)||47||R1|
|TERRE HAUTE SOUTH||59||EDGEWOOD||47||R1|
|TERRE HAUTE NORTH||54||ROBINSON (ILL.)||46||R1|
|ALL TIMES EASTERN|
|BOONE GROVE||AT||RENSSELAER CENTRAL||8:00 PM|
|EASTERN (PEKIN)||AT||NORTH POSEY||12:00 PM|
|EASTERN (PEKIN)||AT||MOUNT VERNON (POSEY)||7:30 PM|
|FRANKLIN COUNTY||AT||MUNCIE CENTRAL||7:30 PM|
|INDIANAPOLIS ATTUCKS||VS.||INDIANAPOLIS SHORTRIDGE||4:00 PM|
|INDIANAPOLIS CATHEDRAL||AT||WARREN CENTRAL||7:30 PM|
|INDIANAPOLIS WASHINGTON||VS.||INDIANAPOLIS TECH||12:00 PM|
|NEW ALBANY||AT||SEYMOUR||7:30 PM|
|OLDENBURG ACADEMY||AT||WALDRON||7:30 PM|
|PROVIDENCE CRISTO REY||AT||INDIAN CREEK||7:30 PM|
|SALEM||AT||MOUNT VERNON (POSEY)||1:30 PM|
|SALEM||AT||NORTH POSEY||6:00 PM|
|TRI||AT||ANDERSON PREP ACADEMY||7:30 PM|
|WASHINGTON CATHOLIC||AT||WHITE RIVER VALLEY||7:30 PM|
|SHERIDAN||VS.||INDIANAPOLIS RITTER||10:00 AM||R1|
|SOUTHWESTERN (SHELBYVILLE)||AT||ALEXANDRIA||12:00 PM||R1|
|LOSER GAME 1||VS.||LOSER GAME 2||6:00 PM||3RD|
|WINNER GAME 1||VS.||WINNER GAME 2||8:00 PM||1ST|
|BISMARCK-HENNING (ILL.) CLASSIC|
|INDIANA MATH & SCIENCE||AT||BISMARCK-HENNING (ILL.)||12:30 PM||POOL B|
|INDIANA MATH & SCIENCE||VS.||MILFORD (ILL.)||6:30 PM||POOL B|
|CLAY CITY TOURNAMENT|
|NORTH VERMILLION||VS.||WHITELAND||3:00 PM||R1|
|TRI-WEST||VS.||NORTH CENTRAL (FARMERSBURG)||4:30 PM||R1|
|RIVERTON PARKE||AT||OWEN VALLEY||6:00 PM||R1|
|MITCHELL||VS.||CLAY CITY||7:30 PM||R1|
|CLINTON CENTRAL TOURNAMENT|
|CLINTON PRAIRIE||AT||CLINTON CENTRAL||10:00 AM||R1|
|CARROLL (FLORA)||VS.||TIPTON||11:45 AM||R1|
|NORTH JUDSON||VS.||FOUNTAIN CENTRAL||3:15 PM||R1|
|LOSER GAME 2||VS.||LOSER GAME 1||6:00 PM||CON|
|LOSER GAME 4||VS.||LOSER GAME 3||8:00 PM||CON|
|ROCK CREEK ACADEMY||AT||CONNERSVILLE||12:00 PM||R1|
|LAWRENCE NORTH||VS.||FORT WAYNE CONCORDIA||1:30 PM||R1|
|LOSER GAME 2||VS.||LOSER GAME 1||6:00 PM||3RD|
|WINNER GAME 2||VS.||WINNER GAME 1||7:30 PM||1ST|
|EAST NOBLE TOURNAMENT|
|GARRETT||AT||EAST NOBLE||11:00 AM||R1|
|FREMONT||VS.||JOHN GLENN||12:45 PM||R1|
|LOSER GAME 2||VS.||LOSER GAME 1||6:00 PM||3RD|
|WINNER GAME 2||VS.||WINNER GAME 1||7:45 PM||1ST|
|INDIANAPOLIS LUTHERAN||VS.||JAC-CEN-DEL||10:00 AM||R1|
|SOUTH DECATUR||VS.||VICTORY COLLEGE PREP||12:00 PM||R1|
|LOSER GAME 2||VS.||LOSER GAME 1||6:00 PM||CON|
|LOSER GAME 3||VS.||LOSER GAME 4||8:00 PM||CON|
|WINNER GAME 2||VS.||WINNER GAME 1||6:00 PM||SF|
|WINNER GAME 3||VS.||WINNER GAME 4||8:00 PM||SF|
|GRANT 4 TOURNAMENT|
|MADISON-GRANT||VS.||OAK HILL||12:00 PM||R1|
|LOSER GAME 2||VS.||LOSER GAME 1||6:00 PM||3RD|
|WINNER GAME 2||VS.||WINNER GAME 1||8:00 PM||1ST|
|KANKAKEE (ILL.) TOURNAMENT|
|LAKE STATION TOURNAMENT|
|HOBART||AT||LAKE STATION||11:00 AM||R1|
|WHEELER||VS.||RIVER FOREST||12:30 PM||R1|
|LOSER GAME 2||VS.||LOSER GAME 1||7:00 PM||3RD|
|WINNER GAME 2||VS.||WINNER GAME 1||8:30 PM||1ST|
|LAKELAND CHRISTIAN TOURNAMENT|
|CLINTON CHRISTIAN||VS.||LAKELAND CHRISTIAN||10:00 AM||POOL A|
|TRADERS POINT CHRISTIAN||VS.||FAITH CHRISTIAN||11:30 AM||POOL B|
|CLINTON CHRISTIAN||VS.||DEMOTTE CHRISTIAN||1:00 PM||POOL A|
|BETHANY CHRISTIAN||VS.||TRADERS POINT CHRISTIAN||2:30 PM||POOL B|
|DEMOTTE CHRISTIAN||VS.||LAKELAND CHRISTIAN||4:00 PM||POOL A|
|BETHANY CHRISTIAN||VS.||FAITH CHRISTIAN||5:30 PM||POOL B|
|BETHESDA CHRISTIAN||VS.||PURDUE POLY ENGLEWOOD||9:00 AM||R1|
|UNION COUNTY||AT||MONROVIA||10:30 AM||R1|
|NORTH PUTNAM||VS.||GREENWOOD CHRISTIAN||12:00 PM||R1|
|BORDEN||VS.||RISING SUN||1:30 PM||R1|
|LOSER GAME 1||VS.||LOSER GAME 2||3:00 PM||CON|
|WINNER GAME 1||VS.||WINNER GAME 2||4:30 PM||SF|
|LOSER GAME 3||VS.||LOSER GAME 4||6:00 PM||CON|
|WINNER GAME 3||VS.||WINNER GAME 4||7:30 PM||SF|
|LAWRENCE CENTRAL||VS.||CHESTERTON||11:00 AM||R1|
|COLUMBUS NORTH||VS.||NORWELL||12:45 PM||R1|
|CROWN POINT||VS.||CASTLE||2:30 PM||R1|
|LOSER GAME 1||VS.||LOSER GAME 2||6:00 PM||CON|
|LOSER GAME 3||VS.||LOSER GAME 4||7:45 PM||CON|
|NORTH DAVIESS TOURNAMENT|
|LOOGOOTEE||VS.||FOREST PARK||3:30 PM||7TH|
|EVANSVILLE CHRISTIAN||VS.||PAOLI||5:00 PM||5TH|
|BROWNSTOWN CENTRAL||VS.||SOUTH KNOX||6:30 PM||3RD|
|FORT WAYNE BLACKHAWK||VS.||NORTH DAVIESS||8:00 PM||1ST|
|FORT WAYNE SOUTH||VS.||NEW CASTLE||10:30 AM||R1|
|LOSER GAME 2||VS.||LOSER GAME 1||3:30 PM||CON|
|LOSER GAME 4||VS.||LOSER GAME 3||5:00 PM||CON|
|WINNER GAME 2||VS.||WINNER GAME 1||6:30 PM||SF|
|WINNER GAME 4||VS.||WINNER GAME 3||8:00 PM||SF|
|PROVISO WEST (ILL.) TOURNAMENT|
|GREENSBURG||VS.||SETON CATHOLIC||9:00 AM||POOL A|
|INDIANAPOLIS HOMESCHOOL||VS.||LAWRENCEBURG||9:00 AM||POOL C|
|RUSHVILLE||AT||RICHMOND||11:00 AM||POOL B|
|EASTERN HANCOCK||VS.||BLOOMINGTON SOUTH||11:00 AM||POOL D|
|GREENSBURG||VS.||MONROE CENTRAL||1:00 PM||POOL A|
|INDIANAPOLIS HOMESCHOOL||VS.||INDIANAPOLIS TINDLEY||1:00 PM||POOL C|
|RUSHVILLE||VS.||HERITAGE||3:00 PM||POOL B|
|EASTERN HANCOCK||VS.||NORTH DECATUR||3:00 PM||POOL D|
|SETON CATHOLIC||VS.||MONROE CENTRAL||5:00 PM||POOL A|
|LAWRENCEBURG||VS.||INDIANAPOLIS TINDLEY||5:00 PM||POOL C|
|HERITAGE||AT||RICHMOND||7:00 PM||POOL B|
|BLOOMINGTON SOUTH||VS.||NORTH DECATUR||7:00 PM||POOL D|
|SILVER CREEK TOURNAMENT|
|CLARKSVILLE||AT||SILVER CREEK||6:00 PM||R1|
|WABASH VALLEY TOURNAMENT|
|PARKE HERITAGE||VS.||MARSHALL (ILL.)||10:00 AM||CON|
|GREENCASTLE||VS.||CASEY-WESTFIELD (ILL.)||11:30 AM||CON|
|LINTON-STOCKTON||VS.||WEST VIGO||1:00 PM||QF|
|EDGEWOOD||VS.||ROBINSON (ILL.)||4:00 PM||CON|
|CLOVERDALE||VS.||SOUTH VERMILLION||5:30 PM||CON|
|TERRE HAUTE SOUTH||VS.||TERRE HAUTE NORTH||7:00 PM||QF|
|SOUTH BEND WASHINGTON||VS.||HARRISON (WEST LAFAYETTE)||11:00 AM|
|PORTAGE||VS.||SOUTH BEND WASHINGTON||6:00 PM|
|HARRISON (WEST LAFAYETTE)||AT||WARSAW||8:00 PM|
GIRLS BASKETBALL SCORES
|LINCOLN-WAY EAST (ILL.)||68||HAMMOND CENTRAL||25||R1|
|OAK LAWN (ILL.)||64||HAMMOND CENTRAL||30||CON|
|NORTH CENTRAL (FARMERSBURG) TOURNAMENT|
|NORTH CENTRAL (FARMERSBURG)||70||OBLONG-PALESTINE-HUTSONVILLE (ILL.)||13||POOL A|
|NORTH POSEY||ROBINSON (ILL.)||12:30 PM|
|OBLONG-PALESTINE-HUTSONVILLE (ILL.)||MOUNT VERNON (POSEY)||2:00 PM|
|ROBINSON (ILL.)||ORLEANS||3:30 PM|
|MOUNT VERNON (POSEY)||NORTH CENTRAL (FARMERSBURG)||5:00 PM|
|ORLEANS||NORTH POSEY||6:30 PM|
|EVANSVILLE CENTRAL||AT||SOUTHRIDGE||8:00 PM|
|FORT WAYNE NORTH||AT||FORT WAYNE SNIDER||6:00 PM|
|HENRYVILLE||AT||CRAWFORD COUNTY||7:30 PM|
|INDIANAPOLIS ATTUCKS||VS.||INDIANAPOLIS WASHINGTON||6:00 PM|
|INDIANAPOLIS TECH||VS.||INDIANAPOLIS SHORTRIDGE||2:00 PM|
|INDIANAPOLIS TINDLEY||AT||PURDUE POLY ENGLEWOOD||7:30 PM|
|IRVINGTON PREP ACADEMY||AT||INDIANAPOLIS SCECINA||6:00 PM|
|JAY COUNTY||AT||YORKTOWN||7:30 PM|
|MONROE CENTRAL||AT||EASTERN HANCOCK||7:30 PM|
|NEW CASTLE||AT||FRANKTON||7:30 PM|
|NORTH DECATUR||AT||SHENANDOAH||7:30 PM|
|PRAIRIE HEIGHTS||AT||WHITKO||6:30 PM|
|SHELBYVILLE||AT||FRANKLIN CENTRAL||7:30 PM|
|WASHINGTON||AT||HERITAGE HILLS||8:00 PM|
|WAYNE TRACE (OHIO)||AT||WOODLAN||7:30 PM|
|BISMARCK-HENNING (ILL.) TOURNAMENT|
|BENTON CENTRAL||VS.||SALT FORK (ILL.)||12:30 PM|
|NORTH VERMILLION||VS.||UNITY (ILL.)||12:30 PM|
|BENTON CENTRAL||VS.||NORTH VERMILLION||5:00 PM|
|CARL SANDBURG (ILL.) TOURNAMENT|
|CARROLL (FLORA) TOURNAMENT|
|BETHESDA CHRISTIAN||VS.||WESTERN||10:00 AM||R1|
|EASTERN (GREENTOWN)||VS.||TIPTON||12:00 PM||R1|
|WESTERN BOONE||AT||CARROLL (FLORA)||2:00 PM||R1|
|LEWIS CASS||VS.||COVENANT CHRISTIAN||4:00 PM||R1|
|LOSER GAME 2||VS.||LOSER GAME 1||6:00 PM||CON|
|WINNER GAME 2||VS.||WINNER GAME 1||6:00 PM||SF|
|LOSER GAME 4||VS.||LOSER GAME 3||8:00 PM||CON|
|WINNER GAME 4||VS.||WINNER GAME 3||8:00 PM||SF|
|WINCHESTER||VS.||LAWRENCE NORTH||3:00 PM|
|LAWRENCE NORTH||AT||CONNERSVILLE||6:00 PM|
|HAMMOND MORTON TOURNAMENT|
|NOTRE DAME ACADEMY (OHIO)||AT||HAMMOND MORTON||2:00 PM||POOL A|
|DETROIT EDISON (MICH.)||VS.||GARY WEST||4:00 PM||POOL B|
|HOBART||AT||LAKE CENTRAL||11:00 AM||POOL A|
|MUNSTER||VS.||PORTAGE||12:30 PM||POOL A|
|SOUTH BEND ADAMS||VS.||WASHINGTON TWP.||11:00 AM||POOL B|
|HEBRON||VS.||LAWRENCE CENTRAL||12:30 PM||POOL B|
|SOUTH BEND ADAMS||AT||LAKE CENTRAL||3:00 PM||POOL A|
|PORTAGE||VS.||HEBRON||4:30 PM||POOL A|
|WASHINGTON TWP.||VS.||HOBART||3:00 PM||POOL B|
|LAWRENCE CENTRAL||VS.||MUNSTER||4:30 PM||POOL B|
|LAKELAND CHRISTIAN TOURNAMENT|
|HAMILTON||VS.||FAITH CHRISTIAN||10:00 AM||POOL B|
|CLINTON CHRISTIAN||AT||LAKELAND CHRISTIAN||11:30 AM||POOL A|
|GRANGER CHRISTIAN||VS.||HAMILTON||1:00 PM||POOL B|
|DEMOTTE CHRISTIAN||AT||LAKELAND CHRISTIAN||2:30 PM||POOL A|
|FAITH CHRISTIAN||VS.||GRANGER CHRISTIAN||4:00 PM||POOL B|
|CLINTON CHRISTIAN||VS.||DEMOTTE CHRISTIAN||5:30 PM||POOL A|
|HANOVER CENTRAL||AT||LAPORTE||10:00 AM||R1|
|BETHANY CHRISTIAN||VS.||HIGHLAND||12:00 PM||R1|
|LOSER GAME 2||VS.||LOSER GAME 1||3:00 PM||3RD|
|WINNER GAME 2||VS.||WINNER GAME 1||5:00 PM||1ST|
|MOORESVILLE||VS.||LAFAYETTE JEFF||10:00 AM||R1|
|INDIAN CREEK||VS.||GREENFIELD-CENTRAL||12:00 PM||R1|
|LOWELL||VS.||PERRY MERIDIAN||4:00 PM||R1|
|LOSER GAME 1||VS.||LOSER GAME 2||4:00 PM||CON|
|WINNER GAME 1||VS.||WINNER GAME 2||6:00 PM||SF|
|NORTH CENTRAL (FARMERSBURG) TOURNAMENT|
|POOL B 3RD PLACE||VS.||POOL A 3RD PLACE||2:00 PM||5TH|
|POOL B 2ND PLACE||VS.||POOL A 2ND PLACE||3:30 PM||3RD|
|POOL B 1ST PLACE||VS.||POOL A 1ST PLACE||5:00 PM||1ST|
|EVANSVILLE NORTH||VS.||INDIANAPOLIS CHATARD||12:00 PM||POOL B|
|WEST WASHINGTON||AT||SCOTTSBURG||1:30 PM||POOL A|
|CHARLESTOWN||VS.||EVANSVILLE NORTH||3:00 PM||POOL B|
|INDIANA MATH & SCIENCE||VS.||WEST WASHINGTON||4:30 PM||POOL A|
|INDIANAPOLIS CHATARD||VS.||CHARLESTOWN||6:00 PM||POOL B|
|INDIANA MATH & SCIENCE||AT||SCOTTSBURG||7:30 PM||POOL A|
|TRITON CENTRAL TOURNAMENT|
|SALEM||VS.||TRITON CENTRAL||9:00 AM||R1|
|SOUTHPORT||VS.||HERITAGE CHRISTIAN||12:00 PM||R1|
|LAWRENCEBURG||VS.||BLOOMINGTON NORTH||1:30 PM||R1|
|LOSER GAME 2||VS.||LOSER GAME 1||3:00 PM||CON|
|WINNER GAME 2||VS.||WINNER GAME 1||4:30 PM||SF|
|LOSER GAME 4||VS.||LOSER GAME 3||6:00 PM||CON|
|WINNER GAME 4||VS.||WINNER GAME 3||7:30 PM||SF|
|TWIN LAKES TOURNAMENT|
|NORTH WHITE||VS.||ROCHESTER||3:00 PM||R1|
|MOUNT VERNON (FORTVILLE)||VS.||CROWN POINT||4:30 PM||R1|
|WESTFIELD||VS.||KANKAKEE VALLEY||6:00 PM||R1|
|CLINTON PRAIRIE||AT||TWIN LAKES||7:30 PM||R1|
|TRI-WEST||VS.||SWITZERLAND COUNTY||10:30 AM||R1|
|LOSER GAME 2||VS.||LOSER GAME 1||1:30 PM||3RD|
|WINNER GAME 2||VS.||WINNER GAME 1||3:30 PM||1ST|
MEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL POLLS/RANKINGS
|RANKINGS AS OF 12/26/2022|
|1||PURDUE 12-0||1478 (40)||1|
|2||UCONN 13-0||1459 (20)||2|
|14||MIAMI (FL) 12-1||658||22|
|21||MISSISSIPPI STATE 11-1||215||15|
|22||NEW MEXICO 12-0||147||NR|
|24||WEST VIRGINIA 10-2||126||NR|
|25||NORTH CAROLINA 9-4||112||NR|
|RANKINGS AS OF 12/26/2022|
|1||PURDUE 12-0||790 (25)||1|
|2||UCONN 13-0||772 (7)||2|
|16||MIAMI (FL) 12-1||290||22|
|20||MISSISSIPPI STATE 11-1||169||15|
|24||WEST VIRGINIA 10-2||87||NR|
|8||NORTH CAROLINA 9-4||0.6447||8|
|16||WEST VIRGINIA 10-2||0.6295||17|
|18||NEW MEXICO 12-0||0.6282||18|
|19||VIRGINIA TECH 11-2||0.6259||19|
|22||UTAH STATE 11-2||0.6227||22|
|23||MIAMI (FL) 12-1||0.6222||24|
|24||KANSAS STATE 11-1||0.6220||25|
|11||WEST VIRGINIA 10-2||()||11|
|13||FLORIDA ATLANTIC 11-1||()||13|
|14||NEW MEXICO 12-0||()||15|
|15||OHIO STATE 8-3||()||14|
|16||SAINT MARY’S 10-4||()||16|
|20||SAM HOUSTON 10-2||()||20|
|22||UTAH STATE 11-2||()||NR|
|24||NORTH CAROLINA 9-4||()||23|
|25||KENT STATE 10-3||()||24|
WOMEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL POLLS/RANKINGS
|1||SOUTH CAROLINA 12-0||700 (28)||1|
|3||OHIO STATE 13-0||632||3|
|5||NOTRE DAME 10-1||591||5|
|6||NORTH CAROLINA STATE 11-1||531||7|
|7||VIRGINIA TECH 11-1||508||8|
|13||NORTH CAROLINA 9-2||373||6|
|15||IOWA STATE 8-2||337||14|
|25||ST. JOHN’S 12-0||75||25|
|3||NORTH CAROLINA STATE 11-1||0.7127||3|
|4||SOUTH CAROLINA 12-0||0.7044||4|
|8||NOTRE DAME 10-1||0.6747||8|
|12||IOWA STATE 8-2||0.6593||12|
|14||SOUTH FLORIDA 11-4||0.6483||14|
|16||NORTH CAROLINA 9-2||0.6429||16|
|17||OHIO STATE 13-0||0.6380||17|
|21||PENN STATE 9-4||0.6326||21|
|25||MIDDLE TENNESSEE 8-2||0.6268||25|
|1||SOUTH CAROLINA 12-0||()||1|
|7||NORTH CAROLINA STATE 11-1||()||7|
|8||NOTRE DAME 10-1||()||8|
|9||OHIO STATE 13-0||()||9|
|12||IOWA STATE 8-2||()||13|
|13||VIRGINIA TECH 11-1||()||12|
|19||NORTH CAROLINA 9-2||()||19|
|24||MIDDLE TENNESSEE 8-2||()||24|
TOP 25 MEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL
NO GAMES SCHEDULED
TOP 25 WOMEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL
NO GAMES SCHEDULED
COLLEGE FOOTBALL BOWL SCHEDULE
MONDAY, DEC. 26
NEW MEXICO STATE 24 BOWLING GREEN 19
TUESDAY, DEC. 27
BUFFALO VS. GEORGIA SOUTHERN — CAMELLIA BOWL (MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA) | 12 P.M. | ESPN
OKLAHOMA STATE VS. WISCONSIN — GUARANTEED RATE BOWL (PHOENIX) | 10:15 P.M. | ESPN
MEMPHIS VS. UTAH STATE — FIRST RESPONDER BOWL (DALLAS) | ESPN
COASTAL CAROLINA VS. EAST CAROLINA — BIRMINGHAM BOWL (BIRMINGHAM, ALABAMA) | ESPN
WEDNESDAY, DEC. 28
DUKE VS. UCF — MILITARY BOWL (ANNAPOLIS, MARYLAND) | 2 P.M. | ESPN
ARKANSAS VS. KANSAS — LIBERTY BOWL (MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE) | 5:30 P.M. | ESPN
NO. 15 OREGON VS. NORTH CAROLINA — HOLIDAY BOWL (SAN DIEGO) | 8 P.M.
TEXAS TECH VS. OLE MISS — TEXAS BOWL (HOUSTON) | 9 P.M. | ESPN
THURSDAY, DEC. 29
MINNESOTA VS. SYRACUSE — PINSTRIPE BOWL (BRONX, NEW YORK) | 2 P.M. | ESPN
NO. 13 FLORIDA STATE VS. OKLAHOMA — CHEEZ-IT BOWL (ORLANDO, FLORIDA) | 5:30 P.M. | ESPN
NO. 12 WASHINGTON VS. NO. 20 TEXAS — ALAMO BOWL (SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS) | 9 P.M. | ESPN
FRIDAY, DEC. 30
NO. 23 NC STATE VS. MARYLAND — DUKE’S MAYO BOWL (CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA) | 12 P.M. | ESPN
NO. 18 UCLA VS. PITT — SUN BOWL (EL PASO, TEXAS) | 2 P.M. | CBS
NO. 19 SOUTH CAROLINA VS. NO. 21 NOTRE DAME — GATOR BOWL (JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA) | 3:30 P.M. | ESPN
OHIO VS. WYOMING — ARIZONA BOWL (TUCSON, ARIZONA) | 4:30 P.M.| BARSTOOL
NO. 6 TENNESSEE VS. NO. 7 CLEMSON — ORANGE BOWL (MIAMI GARDENS, FLORIDA) | 8 P.M. | ESPN
SATURDAY, DEC. 31
IOWA VS. KENTUCKY — MUSIC CITY BOWL (NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE) | 12 P.M. | ABC
NO. 5 ALABAMA VS. NO. 9 KANSAS STATE — SUGAR BOWL (NEW ORLEANS) | 12 P.M. | ESPN
NO. 2 MICHIGAN VS. NO. 3 TCU (CFP SEMIFINAL) — FIESTA BOWL (GLENDALE, ARIZONA) | 4 P.M. | ESPN
NO. 1 GEORGIA VS. NO. 4 OHIO STATE (CFP SEMIFINAL) — PEACH BOWL (ATLANTA) | 8 P.M. | ESPN
MONDAY, JAN. 2
NO. 22 MISSISSIPPI STATE VS. ILLINOIS — RELIAQUEST BOWL (TAMPA, FLORIDA) | 12 P.M. | ESPN2
NO. 17 LSU VS. PURDUE — CITRUS BOWL (ORLANDO, FLORIDA) | 1 P.M. | ABC
NO. 10 USC VS. NO. 16 TULANE — COTTON BOWL (ARLINGTON, TEXAS) | 1 P.M. | ESPN
NO. 8 UTAH VS. NO. 11 PENN STATE — ROSE BOWL (PASADENA, CALIFORNIA) | 5 P.M. | ESPN
SUNDAY, JAN. 8
FCS NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP (FRISCO, TEXAS) | 2 P.M. | ABC
MONDAY, JAN. 9
CFP NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP GAME (INGLEWOOD, CALIFORNIA) | ESPN
NFL WEEK 16
MONDAY, DECEMBER 26, 2022
LOS ANGELES CHARGERS 20 INDIANAPOLIS 3.. BOX SCORE: HTTP://HOSTED.STATS.COM/FB/BOXSCORE.ASP?GAMECODE=20221226011&HOME=11&VIS=24&FINAL=TRUE
THURSDAY, DECEMBER 29, 2022
DALLAS COWBOYS AT TENNESSEE TITANS (THU) 7:15P (CT) 8:15P PRIME VIDEO
SUNDAY, JANUARY 01, 2023
ARIZONA CARDINALS AT ATLANTA FALCONS 1:00P (ET) 1:00P FOX
PITTSBURGH STEELERS AT BALTIMORE RAVENS 1:00P (ET) 1:00P CBS
CHICAGO BEARS AT DETROIT LIONS 1:00P (ET) 1:00P FOX
JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS AT HOUSTON TEXANS 12:00P (CT) 1:00P CBS
DENVER BRONCOS AT KANSAS CITY CHIEFS 12:00P (CT) 1:00P CBS
MIAMI DOLPHINS AT NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS 1:00P (ET) 1:00P CBS
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS AT NEW YORK GIANTS 1:00P (ET) 1:00P CBS
NEW ORLEANS SAINTS AT PHILADELPHIA EAGLES 1:00P (ET) 1:00P FOX
CAROLINA PANTHERS AT TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS 1:00P (ET) 1:00P FOX
CLEVELAND BROWNS AT WASHINGTON COMMANDERS 1:00P (ET) 1:00P FOX
SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS AT LAS VEGAS RAIDERS 1:05P (PT) 4:05P FOX
NEW YORK JETS AT SEATTLE SEAHAWKS 1:05P (PT) 4:05P FOX
MINNESOTA VIKINGS AT GREEN BAY PACKERS 3:25P (CT) 4:25P CBS
LOS ANGELES RAMS AT LOS ANGELES CHARGERS 5:20P (PT) 8:20P NBC*
MONDAY, JANUARY 02, 2023
BUFFALO BILLS AT CINCINNATI BENGALS (MON) 8:30P (ET) 8:30P ESPN/ABC
NEW ORLEANS 113 INDIANA 93
BROOKLYN 125 CLEVELAND 117
LA CLIPPERS 142 DETROIT 131 OT
MIAMI 113 MINNESOTA 110
HOUSTON 133 CHICAGO 118
SAN ANTONIO 126 UTAH 122
PORTLAND 124 CHARLOTTE 113
BOX SCORES: HTTP://HOSTED.STATS.COM/NBA/SCOREBOARD.ASP
NO GAMES SCHEDULED
TOP NATIONAL HEADLINES:
BRONCOS FIRE ROOKIE HEAD COACH HACKETT AFTER 4-11 START
ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) The Denver Broncos fired first-year head coach Nathaniel Hackett on Monday with two games left in the season.
Owner and CEO Greg Penner said he’ll lead the search for a new coach with assistance from GM George Paton, in whom he expressed confidence while announcing Hackett’s dismissal.
Firing Hackett with two games left in a lost season allows Penner to begin his search for a replacement immediately.
The Broncos scheduled a news conference for Tuesday, when they’re expected to name their interim head coach for games at Kansas City next weekend and at home against the Chargers in Week 18.
The Walton-Penner group purchased the Broncos for $4.65 billion last summer, a global record for a professional sports franchise, and Rob Walton said after the league’s approval that he aimed to make the Broncos perennial championship contenders again.
On Sunday, the Broncos (4-11) were blown out by the equally downtrodden Los Angeles Rams 51-14 when Russell Wilson threw three interceptions and was sacked six times. The game featured a sideline spat between backup QB Brett Rypien and guard Dalton Risner, and pass rusher Randy Gregory threw a punch at a Rams player after the game.
In a statement Monday, Penner thanked Hackett for his dedication but said that “following extensive conversations with George and our ownership group, we determined a new direction would ultimately be in the best interest of the Broncos. This change was made now out of respect for everyone involved and allows us to immediately begin the search for a new head coach.”
Penner said that “moving forward, we will carefully evaluate every aspect of our football operations and make whatever changes are necessary to restore this franchise’s winning tradition.”
Hackett replaced Vic Fangio last January but hasn’t been able to build an offense suitable to Wilson, who recently turned 34.
Hackett is the third NFL head coach fired during the 2022 season. The Carolina Panthers replaced Matt Rhule with interim head coach Steve Wilks and the Indianapolis Colts fired Frank Reich and replaced him with coaching novice Jeff Saturday.
Many fans thought the Broncos hired Hackett away from the Green Bay Packers, where he was offensive coordinator, to help them land quarterback Aaron Rodgers. But Rodgers decided to re-up with the Packers and the Broncos instead traded for Wilson, who was seen as still in his prime.
Wilson, however, has had an awful first season in Denver after the Broncos sent four premium draft picks and three players to Seattle for the nine-time Pro Bowler. Wilson has 12 touchdown passes with nine interceptions and 49 sacks in 13 starts and has been unable to snap out of a season-long funk.
He is 3-10 as Denver’s starter and has missed games with a pulled hamstring and a concussion.
He routinely has ignored open receivers underneath to try for deep throws and he has shown a noticeable dip in his ability to escape from pass rushers this season.
The Broncos have missed the playoffs seven straight seasons and extended their string of losing records to six.
They will try to snap a 14-game losing streak to the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday and beat Patrick Mahomes for the first time in 11 tries.
DOLPHINS QB TUA TAGOVAILOA IN CONCUSSION PROTOCOL AGAIN
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa has returned to the NFL’s concussion protocol, Miami coach Mike McDaniel said Monday.
Tagovailoa was experiencing symptoms when he met with team doctors Monday, though McDaniel said it is unclear if Tagovailoa was concussed in Sunday’s 26-20 loss to Green Bay.
Tagovailoa appeared to bang his head on the ground when he was tackled in the second quarter against the Packers, but he never left the game and was not evaluated for a concussion.
“As far as the game was concerned, no one recognized anything with regard to any sort of hit. I can’t really tell you exactly what it was,” McDaniel said, adding that he got the news Monday afternoon.
The concussion protocol is enacted whenever a player reports concussion-related symptoms, even if he isn’t certain to have a concussion.
There is no set timetable for exiting the protocol, so Tagovailoa could potentially play in Sunday’s pivotal game at New England if he advances through the NFL’s five-step process and is cleared.
Teddy Bridgewater will practice this week with the first team, but McDaniel said it is too early to name a starter for Week 17.
“That’s one of the reasons you go and aggressively pursue a player like Teddy Bridgewater,” McDaniel said.
If Tagovailoa did suffer a concussion, it would be his second this season.
He entered the concussion protocol after taking a scary hit that knocked him unconscious during Miami’s Sept. 29 game at Cincinnati. He was stretchered off the field and returned in Week 7.
Tagovailoa took another hard hit four days before the Cincinnati game during a win over Buffalo. He appeared to show concussion symptoms but was evaluated and stayed in the game. The NFL later changed its concussion protocol to mandate that any player who shows possible concussion symptoms – including a lack of balance or stability – sit out the remainder of a game.
The injury comes at a challenging time for Miami (8-7), which has lost four straight to fall to the bottom of the AFC playoff field.
“This is something that we have all of our fortunes ahead of us,” McDaniel said, “so it’s up to us to choose what we do with all the past experiences, move on to the next game.”
AP SOURCE: JETS’ WHITE CLEARED BY DOCS, WILL START SUNDAY
(AP) — Mike White is back at quarterback for the New York Jets.
And just in time, with their playoff hopes hanging by a thread.
White was cleared by doctors and will start Sunday in Seattle, according to a person with direct knowledge of the situation.
White missed the Jets’ past two games while dealing with broken ribs suffered in New York’s 20-12 loss at Buffalo on Dec. 11. He has practiced on a limited basis since, but hadn’t been cleared by doctors for contact so he couldn’t play.
That clearance came Monday, the person told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the team hadn’t announced the results of White’s examination.
The New York Post first reported White had been cleared and will start Sunday.
With the Jets (7-8) still in the playoff hunt with two games remaining, they get their quarterback back.
White went 80 of 129 for 952 yards and three touchdowns with two interceptions while starting three games in place of the benched Zach Wilson. He was twice knocked out of the game against the Bills. X-rays at the stadium were clear and he finished the game, but CT scans at a hospital revealed a fracture to his ribs.
“A couple in a row,” White said two weeks ago, “that makes that area just kind of really vulnerable.”
Jets team doctors ruled he couldn’t be cleared for contact, and White said he sought the opinion of about 10 independent doctors who all concurred.
Wilson started the past two games in White’s absence, but struggled mightily. He was replaced by fourth-string quarterback Chris Streveler, promoted from the practice squad before the game, to give the Jets a spark in their 19-3 loss to Jacksonville last Thursday night.
Wilson, who was benched to reset his mechanics and mental approach, went 27 of 53 for 409 yards and two touchdowns with two interceptions in his starts against Detroit and Jacksonville – both losses during which the offense had trouble finding consistency.
Wilson’s performance against the Jaguars in front of a national audience – 9 of 18 for 92 yards and an INT – was a clear indication he had not fixed the flaws that ailed him before his benching.
The Jets’ playoff situation appeared dire after that loss, but New York received some good news with the results of some other games over the weekend. Miami, New England and Las Vegas all lost, so New York remains in ninth place in the AFC playoff standings behind the Patriots (7-8) and Dolphins (8-7).
The Jets can snap an 11-year postseason drought if they win their final two games at Seattle and Miami, and the Patriots lose one of their last two against Miami at home or at Buffalo.
HURTS ON HOLD? EAGLES HOPE INJURED QB CAN RETURN VS. SAINTS
PHILADELPHIA (AP) The No. 1 seed in the NFC is still on the table for the Eagles.
So is starting banged-up quarterback Jalen Hurts.
Hurts missed Philadelphia’s loss to Dallas because of a sprained right shoulder – a defeat that denied the Eagles the NFC East championship and the No. 1 seed in the NFC. Had the Eagles clinched those top spots, the need to have Hurts play again this season would have been erased.
Yet, even at 13-2, the Eagles need their star QB to try to win one of the final two games to earn the No. 1 seed that would give them a bye and home-field advantage in the NFC playoffs.
Gardner Minshew was serviceable against the Cowboys. But against a Saints (6-9) team still clinging to postseason hopes, the Eagles will turn to Hurts if he’s deemed healthy (enough) to play.
“If Jalen’s ready to go, Jalen will play,” coach Nick Sirianni said. “He’s our starting quarterback. If he’s ready to go, then he’ll go. That’s nothing against Gardner because I thought he played a really good game. But if Jalen’s ready, he’ll go.”
The Eagles had steamrolled their way toward the best record in the NFL until they were upended in Dallas. So now the road to No. 1 is a bit messy: Should Dallas win its last two games and the Eagles lose to the Saints and Giants, the Cowboys are the NFC East champions. And if that scenario unfolds, and somehow Minnesota and San Francisco each lose one of their two final games, the Cowboys are the No. 1 seed in the NFC.
That’s a lot of wishful thinking in Dallas.
In Philly, it’s a lot less complicated: win one (or a Dallas loss) and celebrate being No. 1.
“You don’t think about that yet,” Sirianni said. “We’ve got to take these lumps that they gave us and that we created ourselves, and then sit on them for a little bit.”
Even if Minshew gets a second straight start, it’s not exactly cause for concern quite yet. The statistical website fivethirtyeight.com on Monday gave the Eagles a 97% chance of winning the NFC East, 96% chance of a first-round bye and still a 22% chance of winning the Super Bowl. Minshew wasn’t really the reason the Eagles lost, anyway (though a last-gasp throw was nowhere near a receiver). He threw for 355 yards, completing 24 of 40 passes and two touchdowns in his first start of the season.
WHAT NEEDS HELP
The Eagles need more takeaways – and to stop giving away the ball. The Eagles had two of their four turnovers in the final five minutes against Dallas, and a team that raced to a franchise-record start on the strength of ball security is suddenly having a hard time hanging on. The Eagles’ turnover margin over the first nine weeks of the season was plus-15, the best in the NFL. Since then, the Eagles are an NFL-worst minus-6. Their four turnovers against Dallas led to 20 points.
“You can’t turn the ball over four times and expect to beat a good team,” Minshew said.
WR DeVonta Smith had eight catches for 113 yards and two touchdowns and has teamed with A.J. Brown to form arguably the greatest wide receiver duo in franchise history. Smith has set a career high in receptions (79), yards (1,014) and TDs (seven) this season. Smith and Brown are the first 1,000 yards receiving duo in team history.
A defense that let the Eagles squander a pair of double-digit leads. The dagger: The Eagles surrendered a 52-yard reception on a third-and-30 that set up Dallas’ tying touchdown in the fourth quarter.
CB Avonte Maddox (toe), DT Jordan Davis (head) and OT Lane Johnson (abdomen) were hurt against Dallas.
3 – The Eagles are now the third NFL team since 1982 to have three players (Haason Reddick, Josh Sweat and Javon Hargrave) with double-digit sacks in a season. They joined the 1985 Raiders and the 1989 Vikings.
Beat the Saints and get ready for playoff games at Lincoln Financial Field.
PANTHERS COURTING CB NORMAN WITH HORN HAVING WRIST SURGERY
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) The Carolina Panthers worked out 35-year-old cornerback Josh Norman on Monday because starter Jaycee Horn’s status for Sunday’s crucial game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers is up in the air.
Horn broke his left wrist in Carolina’s 37-23 win over the Detroit Lions on Saturday and will have surgery Tuesday, interim coach Steve Wilks said. Wilks also said it will be determined after surgery whether Horn is done for the season or will be able to play with a club on his arm.
Wilks said the expectation is the Panthers will sign Norman if all goes well in his workout.
If Horn is out, Keith Taylor would start at cornerback, Wilks said, and Norman would play in a reserve role.
“He has experience in this league and he brings veteran leadership and most importantly he possesses our DNA,” Wilks said of Norman. “I know him personally and he played for me. He understands the culture we are trying to create here and the level of play we are looking for.”
Norman spent four seasons in Carolina (2012-15), helping the Panthers reach the Super Bowl in his final season while earning All-Pro honors. But after initially placing the franchise tag on Norman following the 2015 season, then-general manager Dave Gettleman abruptly rescinded the offer.
Norman went on to sign a five-year, $75 million free agent contract with Washington, where he spent five seasons. He also had a season in Buffalo and San Francisco, starting 14 games last season with the 49ers and forcing a career-high seven fumbles. Norman has not played this season.
The Panthers (6-9) trail the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (7-8) by a game in the NFC South, but still control their own destiny because of head-to-head tiebreakers.
If Carolina beats Tampa Bay and New Orleans to close the season, it will secure its first division title since 2015 despite having a losing record. If the Panthers lose Sunday, their division title hopes are over. The Panthers held Tom Brady and the Buccaneers in a check in a 21-3 win earlier this season.
BRONCOS’ RANDY GREGORY, RAMS’ ODAY ABOUSHI SUSPENDED 1 GAME
Denver Broncos linebacker Randy Gregory and Los Angeles Rams guard Oday Aboushi have each been suspended one game after the two traded blows following the Rams’ 51-14 win Sunday.
As the teams crowded the middle of the field on their way to their locker rooms after the game, Gregory and Aboushi exchanged words — with helmets on — and Gregory punched Aboushi in the helmet. Aboushi responded with a punch of his own before they were separated.
In letters sent to the players Monday, NFL vice president of football operations Jon Runyan said, “as you were walking toward a group of teammates, coaches, and media, you both stopped and swung at each other’s head and/or neck. Your aggressive conduct could have caused serious injury and clearly does not reflect the high standards of sportsmanship expected of a professional.”
Gregory and Aboushi will be eligible to return to their respective teams on Jan. 2. The players can appeal their suspensions, an option Aboushi will take, Rams coach Sean McVay said Monday.
Sunday was just the second time Gregory had played since he suffered a knee injury in Week 4. He signed a five-year, $70 million deal in the offseason but has been limited to six games.
The postgame skirmish capped a game of undisciplined moments for Gregory. He was pulled from the game twice by coach Nathaniel Hackett, once in the first half when Gregory was flagged after he threw his helmet after a Rams touchdown, then later when he was flagged for a late hit on Rams quarterback Baker Mayfield.
“After that second one, we took him out — that’s unacceptable,” said Hackett, who was fired Monday.
Gregory declined to address the incidents after the game other than to say, “Y’all want to know if I hit him in the mouth — I did.”
VRBO FIESTA BOWL PREVIEW: TCU VS. MICHIGAN GAME NOTES
ABOUT THE GAME: No. 3 TCU will make its first College Football Playoff appearance when it faces No. 2 Michigan in the Vrbo Fiesta Bowl on Dec. 31 at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Ariz. The Horned Frogs and Wolverines will be meeting for the first time on the gridiron. TCU’s last game against a Big Ten opponent was a 34-13 win at Purdue in 2019. TCU is the first school from the state of Texas to make the College Football Playoff and just the second team (Michigan, 2021) to be in the CFP after starting the season unranked. TCU has won 12 games for the fifth time in its history and first since 2014. This season, like 2014, saw the Horned Frogs picked to finish seventh in the Big 12. TCU’s five wins over ranked opponents is tied with Tennessee for the national lead. 4TCU is 2-0 against Michigan Head Coach Jim Harbaugh. The Horned Frogs won 38-36 and 31-14 against Stanford in the 2007 and 2008 seasons, respectively, when Harbaugh was head coach of the Cardinal. The Horned Frogs will play in their first bowl game since the 2018 Cheez-It Bowl, a 10-7 overtime win against Cal at Chase Field in Phoenix. TCU was selected to the 2020 Texas Bowl versus Arkansas, but the game was canceled. TCU will be playing in its second Fiesta Bowl and game at State Farm Stadium, having dropped a 17-10 decision to Boise State in 2010. TCU will play outside the state of Texas for just the fourth time this season and first since Oct. 29 at West Virginia. The Horned Frogs’ last five games, covering all four contests in November and the Dec. 3 Big 12 Championship, were in Texas. TCU will be playing in its 35th bowl game and has a record of 17-16-1.
TALKING HORNED FROGS: TCU was the first Big 12 team to be 12-0 since Texas in 2009. The Horned Frogs were also the first Big 12 member to go 9-0 in conference play since Oklahoma in 2016. Five of TCU’s wins were against teams it lost to by at least two scores last season, including four by at least three scores. TCU is the first team since 1975 to win seven straight games by 10 points or less. Sonny Dykes became the first head football coach in TCU and Big 12 history to start 12-0 in his first season. He’s just the fourth head coach nationally since 1996 to accomplish the feat. The Horned Frogs are just the third team since 1960 (Stanford, 2012; Iowa, 1960) to win four consecutive games over ranked opponents in a calendar month. TCU’s four consecutive games with a win over a ranked opponent ties for first nationally since 1996. 4TCU already has seven more wins than it had all of last season. Only Tulane (+9) has a bigger improvement.
COMPLETE GAME NOTES: https://gofrogs.com/documents/2022/12/19/TCU_Football_Notes_-_Michigan_Game.pdf
What You Need to Know
• Michigan is 13-0 for the first time in program history.
• U-M has won more games (25) over the last two seasons than any two-year stretch in school history.
• Michigan is making its second appearance in the College Football Playoff (2021, 2022).
• The Wolverines will play in the Fiesta Bowl for the second time.
• Saturday’s game will be the first-ever meeting with TCU.
• U-M won its league-leading 44th Big Ten Championship with a 43-22 win over Purdue (Dec. 3).
Return to the College Football Playoff
• No. 2-seeded Michigan was selected to the College Football Playoff national semifinal and will face No. 3 TCU in the Vrbo Fiesta Bowl on New Year’s Eve.
• The Wolverines will be making their second appearance in the College Football Playoff in as many seasons.
• U-M’s initial CFP selection came last year in the Orange Bowl, losing 34-11 to eventual national champion Georgia
• The Wolverines are one of only three Big Ten schools to qualify for the CFP: Ohio State and Michigan State are the others.
Michigan is Going Bowl-ing
• The Wolverines will participate in a bowl game for the 50th time in school history.
• U-M has compiled a 21-28 record in bowl games, listing 11th in the NCAA in appearances and tied for 17th in victories.
U-M has played in 12 different bowl games during its history, winning 21 contests.
• Michigan will return to the Fiesta Bowl for just the second time in program history. The only previous appearance came during Jim Harbaugh‘s junior year, when he led Michigan to a 27-23 victory over Nebraska on Jan. 1, 1986.
• This will be Jim Harbaugh‘s ninth bowl game as a collegiate head coach. He enters the Fiesta Bowl game with a 2-6 record in bowl games, including a 1-5 mark at Michigan.
Wolverines and Horned Frogs
• Saturday’s contest will mark the first-ever meeting between the Wolverines and the Horned Frogs.
• TCU will become the 152nd all-time opponent for the Wolverines.
Series vs. TCU: First Meeting
Series Streak: First Meeting
Last Meeting vs. TCU: N/A
Last Michigan Win: N/A
Game Notes Nuggets
• Michigan has achieved its first-ever 13-0 season, eclipsing the previous record of 12 wins shared by the 1905, 1997, and 2021 teams. The program’s 25 wins over the last two seasons are a program best in any two-year span.
• U-M (Penn State, Ohio State) and South Carolina (Tennessee, Clemson) are the only teams in the nation to have two wins against opponents ranked in the current AP Top 10. Michigan is one of 15 FBS schools to not play an FCS school during the regular season.
• U-M’s 15-game conference win streak is the program’s longest since a 16-game conference win streak spanning 1996-98. The Wolverines will seek to avenge a 0-1 record in the College Football Playoff.
• Quarterback J.J. McCarthy has begun his career as a starter with a 12-0 record, setting a new standard for most wins to begin a starting quarterback’s career before his first loss. The previous record-holder, Dennis Franklin (1972), won his first 10 starts before suffering a loss.
• Michigan’s five touchdowns of 45-plus yards against Ohio State were the most any team has scored against an AP Top-Five- ranked team in a single game since the 2005 season.
• U-M is scoring 40.1 points per game and allowing 13.4 points against, on average. Michigan is one of two teams ranked in the top 10 in both scoring offense (seventh) and scoring defense (fifth), along with Alabama (fourth, offense; ninth, defense).
• Michigan leads the country in scoring differential (+26.7). Georgia (+25.8) and Ohio State (+25.3) are the only other teams in the country with average scoring margins above +25 points per game. U-M (+347) and Georgia (+343) are the only teams to have outscored opponents by 305-plus points cumulatively this year.
• U-M has scored points on its opening possession in 11 of 13 games this season (eight touchdowns, three field goals).
• The Michigan defense has forced 48 three-and-outs on the season. In 13 games, the opponent’s first second-half possession has resulted in a change of possession 12 times.
• Dating to late in the 2021 season, U-M has averaged three rushing touchdowns per game (51 rushing TDs in 17 games). The team has 38 in 13 games of 2022 (tied-No. 3, NCAA) and scored 13 in the final four games of 2021.
• Blake Corum had been the focal point of that rushing attack, ranking eighth in the country in rushing yards (1,463), the highest total by a Wolverine since Denard Robinson’s 2010 season (1,702 yards) and the most by a U-M back since Mike Hart’s junior season of 2006 (1,562 yards). He finished his season (injury) with 19 touchdowns and posted an in-season, eight-game streak of 100-plus rushing yards with at least one rushing score.
• Donovan Edwards leads the nation in yards per carry (7.45) with 872 yards on 117 carries. He is an explosive-play machine with five career touchdown runs of 50-plus yards, including the three in the last two games, plus one touchdown pass and one touchdown catch of 70-plus yards.
• Edwards is the first player in Michigan history with a touchdown pass (75 yards), touchdown catch (77 yards) and touchdown run (75 yards, 85 yards) of at least 75 yards in his career.
• The last player to score a touchdown of at least 75 yards in three different ways in his career was Tom Harmon, who did it all in the same game against California in 1940: 70-yard punt return, 86-yard run from scrimmage, 95-yard kickoff return. Harmon had five total scores in the game (one passing, one other rushing).
• McCarthy has thrown 20 passing touchdowns to three interceptions this season, a plus-17 rating when measuring touchdowns minus interceptions. Only Elvis Grbac’s 1991 season, which featured a plus-19 rating (25 touchdown passes to six interceptions) is a better single-season mark.
• The offensive line has been the engine behind the offense and was rewarded by being named the first-ever back-to-back winner of the Joe Moore Award (2021-22) earlier this month. All four starters earned All-Big Ten honors in some form, including three first-team honorees (Trevor Keegan, Olusegun Oluwatimi, Zak Zinter). Oluwatimi was also named Michigan’s first-ever Outland Trophy winner and was the recipient of the Rimington Trophy.
• So far this season, the offensive line has paved the way to an average of 5.97 yards per sack-adjusted carry, and 6.6 yards per play overall. The men up front have allowed just 56 negative plays on 895 offensive snaps (4.3 per game on 68.8 offensive snaps).
• The unit leads the Big Ten’s best rushing attack (243.0 yards per game), which is ranked No. 5 nationally with eight games this season that included 3+ rushing touchdowns.
• Opponents have pressured a U-M passer 29 times (13 sacks, 16 hurries) in 13 games. When the line does allow a sack against starter McCarthy, it comes on an average of 4.60 seconds to throw, the tied-eighth-most time when considering passers with at least 100 dropbacks.
• J.J. McCarthy is among the most efficient passers in the nation, ranking 20th in that statistic (155.4) and he’s even better on play action, averaging an FBS-best 13.1 yards per attempt on such plays (min. 50 dropbacks).
• When McCarthy starts and finishes a Michigan drive, U-M has produced 50 touchdowns and 22 field goals on 118 possessions, translating to points on 61 percent of drives. In his 12 starts, the team has scored in 52 of 56 red zone trips (92.8 percent) with him on the field, scoring 43 touchdowns.
• Receiver Ronnie Bell leads all U-M pass catchers in catches (56) and yards (754), while Cornelius Johnson holds the lead in receiving touchdowns (six). Nine different players have at least one touchdown catch.
• With touchdowns of 69 and 75 yards against the Buckeyes, Johnson became the first Wolverine to catch two passes at least 69 yards in the same game since Jeremy Gallon against Indiana in 2013.
• Tight end Luke Schoonmaker entered the 2022 season having never caught more than three passes in a game but has four or more catches in four games this year. He established new career highs in catches (nine at Indiana) and yards (72 vs. Maryland) during conference play.
• U-M’s high scoring rates have Jake Moody (136 points) leading the nation in points with Blake Corum (114) eighth.
• The defense is No. 3 in total defense with top-five ranks in rushing (third), scoring, pass efficiency, and first downs allowed (fourth).
• No team has reached 150 yards on the ground against Michigan this season; nine of 13 teams have been kept below 300 yards of total offense (Maryland, Illinois, Ohio State, Purdue).
• Mike Morris leads the team in TFLs (11.0) and sacks (7.5) and ranks second in the Big Ten despite missing most of the last three games. Morris has PFF’s No. 3 pass-rush productivity grade (PRP, minimum 65 pass-rush snaps) in the Big Ten.
• Kris Jenkins ranks sixth among all FBS defenders with a 15.0 run stop percentage. Run stop percentage is a metric by PFF that measures the percentage of a player’s defensive snaps that result in a stuff on a run play. Mazi Smith (12.4 percent) is also a standout in this category, making U-M one of two Big Ten teams with a pair of teammates in the FBS’ top-40 ranked individuals.
• Defensive backs Rod Moore and Will Johnson (three interceptions) are tied for the team lead in turnovers. Seven different Wolverines have at least one pick, and 18 different players have at least one pass breakup.
• Among punters with at least one punt per game (13), Brad Robbins‘ 4.34-second hang time is the best in the country, according to PFFCollege. He is one of two punters above 4.2 seconds and the only Big Ten punter above 4.01 seconds. The average among Big Ten punters who meet the same qualifications is 3.81 seconds.
• With Robbins directing the unit, no opponent has registered a punt return of 10-plus yards since U-M played Ohio State in the 2017 season (122 punts).
• Thirty-two (32) of Robbins’ 38 punts have been downed, fair caught or rolled out of bounds. The other six have been returned for a combined total of 17 yards.
• Robbins’ special teams partner Jake Moody has helped the Wolverines achieve a top-25 kickoff coverage unit, with opposing returners gaining 17.38 yards per return attempt. Moody has kicked off 94 times and leads the country in combined touchbacks (63) and fair catches (10) with 73.
• Moody is the third player in Michigan history to record consecutive 100-point seasons, joining Anthony Thomas (1999-2000) and Tom Harmon (1939-40). His 136 points this year are just two points shy of Desmond Howard (1991, 138 points) for the single-season record for points scored.
• Moody’s 66 career made field goals are a Michigan record. He’s made 26 during the 2022 season along with 58 PATs, both single-year records. His 15 career field goals from 40-plus yards are also a program record.
• Moody is the second-highest scorer in program history (344 career points). Only Garrett Rivas (354 points) has scored more points in his career for Michigan Football.
COMPLETE GAME NOTES: https://mgoblue.com/documents/2022/12/26/20221226-fbl-notes-tcu.pdf
CHICK-FIL-A BOWL PREVIEW: OHIO STATE VS. GEORGIA GAME NOTES
OHIO STATE NOTES:
The Chick-fi l-A Peach Bowl will be the seventh College Football Playoff game for Ohio State. Only Alabama (13) and Clemson (10) have played in more games. In the Buckeyes’ three wins, they’ve averaged 44.3 points per game and scored 42 or more each time. In their three losses, they’ve averaged just 15.6 points per game. Ohio State and Alabama are tied for the most all-time appearances in the College Football Playoff poll with 54. The Buckeyes’ average rank is 5.26, which is second only to Alabama at 3.02.
No. 4 Ohio State makes its first appearance in the Chick-fi l-A Peach Bowl and it will be on the largest of stages: a College Football Playoff semifinal matchup in prime time (8 p.m.) against defending national champion and No. 1 Georgia at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Game time is 8 p.m. Ohio State is 11-1 on the season, was 8-1 and runner-up in the Big Ten East Division and was ranked in the Top 3 nationally all season. The Buckeyes are one of only two one-loss teams – TCU is the other – and both are in the CFP behind unbeaten Georgia and Michigan, both 13-0, respectively. Ohio State and Georgia have met just once on the gridiron: the Bulldogs defeated the Buckeyes, 21-14, to win the 1993 Florida Citrus Bowl in Orlando, Fla. That Citrus Bowl win capped a 10-2 season for Georgia under coach Ray Goff . Ohio State went 8-3-1 that season under John Cooper with Kirk Herbstreit a team captain and the starting QB. The game will be Georgia’s 11th at Mercedes Benz Stadium, which is situated 72 miles from Athens, since it opened in 2017. This will be Ohio State’s first game in the stadium.
Georgia is 13-0 on the season and has been ranked No. 1 in five of the six College Football Playoff polls this season. The Bulldogs defeated LSU, 50-20, in its last outing in the SEC Championship Game in Atlanta. Heisman Trophy finalist QB Stetson Bennett threw for 268 yards and four touchdowns against the Tigers. He is 27-3 lifetime as a starter with 3,425 yards this season and 20 TD passes. Like last year, Georgia possesses one of the nation’s top defenses. Only Illinois has given up fewer points per game on average than the Bulldogs (12.8). Georgia has top 10 national rankings on both sides of the ball is scoring offense (ninth, 39.7), scoring defense (second, 12.8), total offense (seventh, 491.9) and total defense (eighth, 292.0). Georgia is No. 1 nationally in both red zone offense and red zone defense. Since the beginning on the 2021 season, Georgia has won 27 of its last 28 games.
The Buckeyes finished the regular season with an 11-1 record with all 11 of its wins coming by double digits. Ohio State is Top 10 nationally in total offense (6th; 492.7) and 12th in total defense (303.9). A seven-game streak of 40-or-more points by Ohio State was snapped at Northwestern. It was a school and Big Ten Conference record. The defense also had a streak snapped at Northwestern: six consecutive games forcing an opponent turnover. Ohio State still ranks tied for 23rd nationally in turnover margin with 17 turnovers forced, vs. only eight turnovers for a plus-0.52 per game average.
A pair of linebackers – Tommy Eichenberg and Steele Chambers – lead Ohio State’s defense with 112 and 69 tackles, respectively. Eichenberg ranks first in the Big Ten and second in the Power 5 with 72 solo tackles and he ranks fourth and 21st in the Big Ten and Power 5, respectively with 12.0 tackles for loss. Ohio State’s defensive line features four sophomores – DEs JT Tuimoloau and Jack Sawyer; and DTs Tyliek Williams and Michael Hall Jr. – who have combined for 27.0 TFLs with three of them recording at least 6.5 TFLs apiece. Veteran DEs Zach Harrison and Javontae Jean-Baptiste have combined for 10.5 TFLs and 47 tackles. DT Taron Vincent has started every game and is having his best season with 23 tackles and two QB hurries. Three safeties start each game and two of them – Lathan Ransom and Ronnie Hickman – rank third and fourth on the team, respectively, in tackles with 65 and 51. A total of 13 different players have registered at least one full sack this season.
The Buckeye offense is scoring 44.5 points per game – 2nd nationally – and has scored 55 of 58 times in the red zone for the second-highest percentage in the country (.948). Impressive is the rate of red zone TDs for Ohio State: 44 with a balance of 22 passing and 22 rushing scores. Ohio State is tied for 4th nationally with 44 red zone touchdowns. Georgia is No. 1 with 48. Ohio State has scored 20-or-more points in 73 consecutive games, which passed Oklahoma for the FBS record. Oklahoma’s streak ended in 2021 against West Virginia. Ohio State’s last game without scoring at least 20 points came in the 2017 season: a 31-16 loss to Oklahoma at Ohio Stadium.
COMPLETE GAME NOTES: https://ohiostatebuckeyes.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/12/13_OSUvsUGA-FINAL.pdf
Top-ranked Georgia will face fourth-ranked Ohio State in the College Football Playoff Semifinal at the 2022 Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl in Atlanta on Dec. 31 at 8 p.m. on ESPN. The Bulldogs (13-0) will represent the SEC in their third CFP appearance (fifth game) while the Buckeyes (11-1) hail from the Big Ten and will be making their fifth appearance in a CFP contest. The winner of this game advances to the CFP National Championship in Inglewood, Calif., on Jan. 9 against either Michigan or TCU. The Bulldogs are making their 60th bowl appearance, which ranks second nationally. They will be making a school record 26th consecutive appearance, the nation’s longest active bowl streak. In school history, Georgia owns a 35-21-3 record in bowl games. Ohio State has played in 53 bowl games, sporting a record of 26-27. Under Ryan Day, the Buckeyes are 2-2 during the postseason, including 1-2 in CFP contests. Last year, Ohio State edged Utah 48-45 in the Rose Bowl Game. PEACH BOWL HISTORY FOR THE BULLDOGS The Bulldogs are 4-2 all-time in Peach Bowl history: Dec. 28, 1973 (Georgia def. #18 Maryland 17-16); Dec. 30, 1989 (Syracuse def. Georgia 19-18); Dec. 30, 1995 (#18 Virginia def. Georgia 34-27); Dec. 31, 1998 (#19 Georgia def. #14 Virginia 35-33); Dec. 30, 2006 (Georgia def. #14 Virginia Tech 31-24); Jan. 1, 2021 (#9 Georgia def. #8 Cincinnati 24-21). SERIES HISTORY WITH THE BUCKEYES Georgia owns a 1-0 edge in the series with the Buckeyes. The teams met in the 1993 Citrus Bowl in Orlando, and the No. 8 Bulldogs claimed a 21-14 victory over No. 15 OSU to finish 10-2 under Ray Goff. Georgia was led by Doak Walker Award winner Garrison Hearst and quarterback Eric Zeier while the Buckeyes featured Kirk Herbstreit at quarterback and Robert Smith at running back. SENIORS MAKING HISTORY Georgia captured the 2022 SEC Championship with a 50-30 win over No. 14 LSU in Atlanta on Dec. 3. The Bulldog senior class has now established a school record for most career victories with a 47-5 mark. That mark included just nine regular season games and a bowl triumph during the COVID-shortened season of 2020. The 2021 Bulldog class that finished their career as national champions tallied a 45-8 mark. The 2022 season marks the first time Georgia has started a season 13-0. The school record for wins in a season is 14 after Kirby Smart’s squad accomplished the feat in 2021 en route to a 14-1 season and its first national championship in 41 years.
RUSHING TO A CONCLUSION: The Bulldogs are tied for third nationally with 37 rushing touchdowns (The school record is 42 set in 2017). Eight different Bulldogs have scored a rushing TD this year. Senior RB Kenny McIntosh has a team-leading 10. He had 182 all-purpose yards in the win over Tech. Georgia is averaging 207.0 yards per game and 5.5 yards per carry. In the Bulldogs’ latest victory over No. 14 LSU in the SECCG, junior RB Kendall Milton went for a career-high 113 yards on only eight carries (14.1 avg.) as Georgia torched the Tigers for 255 on the ground. Georgia’s offensive line features C Sedrick Van Pran (28 consecutive starts), RT Warren McClendon (team high 37 consecutive starts) and RG Tate Ratledge (made 12 of the 13 starts this season) along with LT Broderick Jones (13 consecutive starts) . LG Xavier Truss (started 12 of the 13 games) missed the game versus No. 1 Tennessee due to a toe injury. RSo. Devin Willock got his first career start against the Vols for Truss and then started for Ratledge at Kentucky. The unit is a Joe Moore Award finalist in recognition of being one of the country’s top offensive lines. The versatile Warren Ericson (17 career starts) relieved an injured Ratledge for the final 14 games of 2021. He can play all five spots along the line. Amarius Mims is lining up at either tackle position. They have helped Georgia pile up 39.2 points/game and 491.9 yards/game thus far. Georgia ran for a season-high 292 yards and six touchdowns in their 42-10 win over Auburn. The Bulldogs averaged 7.5 yards/carry against the Tigers. Georgia’s rushing tally versus Auburn was the most since 2020 against Missouri (316). The six rushing scores were the most for Georgia since the 2018 contest versus UMass.
BENNETT 27-3 AS A STARTER AT GEORGIA * Senior Stetson Bennett, a native of Blackshear, Ga., began his career with the Bulldogs as a walk-on in 2017 when he was redshirted. Bennett transferred to Jones College (Miss.) where he started in 2018 and then returned to the Bulldogs on scholarship in 2019. He saw action that season in five games including throwing passes in four of them. In 2020, he started five games and then got the nod in the final 11 contests of the 2021 national championship season and has started every game in 2022. * The first week of December this year was a monumental one for Bennett, who led Georgia to the SEC Championship on Dec. 3. Not long before he was named the winner of the Burlsworth Trophy (awarded annually to the most outstanding college player who began his career as a walk-on) on Dec. 5, the news was announced that he was one of four finalists for the Heisman Trophy. Bennett is the third Heisman finalist invited to New York joining 1982 Heisman winner Herschel Walker and 1992 running back Garrison Hearst. In addition to Walker, Georgia’s other Heisman winner was 1942 quarterback Frank Sinkwich. * In his Bulldog career, Bennett has won a national championship and an SEC title and is 27-3 as a starter. He has completed 64.8 percent of his passes (560-for-864, 7,726 yards, 59 TDs, 20 INTs). * Bennett is 48-for-60 for 642 yards, six touchdowns, no interceptions and no sacks during wins over No. 11 Oregon and No. 14 LSU in the Mercedes-Benz Stadium this year. * In school history, Georgia is 3-5 all-time against the No. 1 team and Bennett is 2-0. He led Georgia to a victory over No. 1 Alabama in the 2022 CFP National Championship Game and then against top-ranked Tennessee this season. * Currently ranks third nationally among active players in Total Offense Yards Per Play for a career at 8.28, which is on pace for both an SEC and school record (8.30 by Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M; 7.69 by Aaron Murray, Georgia). Current active national leader is C.J. Stroud (9.12, Ohio State) followed by Grayson McCall (8.45, Coastal Carolina). * Most recently, Bennett completed 79 percent of his passes, going 23-for-29 for 274 yards, and threw four touchdown passes against No. 14 LSU in the SECCG. He has tied the school record with 269 completions on the season (Eric Zeier, 1993). * After falling behind for only the second time this season (No. 1 Tennessee 3-0, 10:05 1stQ), Bennett directed an 80-yard touchdown drive that was capped by his 13-yard scamper to the pylon. The Bulldogs would never trail again against the Vols. * Bennett took off for a career-long 64-yard touchdown run during the win over Auburn, giving the Bulldogs a 28-3 edge at the start of the fourth quarter. His scoring scamper was the longest for a Georgia QB since 1976 when Ray Goff flew 73 yards in a 41-0 win at Clemson.
PILING UP THE POINTS * Georgia is averaging 39.2 points/game, which is 11th nationally. In the SEC Championship Game victory over #14 LSU, the Bulldogs scored 50 points with 549 yards of offense to help capture the program’s 14th SEC title. * The Bulldogs have outscored their opponents 509-166 this season, including 279-70 in the opening half. * The Bulldogs are 69 of 71 in the Red Zone (a national leading 97 percent) this year with 48 touchdowns and 21 field goals. * Georgia jumped out to a 24-6 halftime lead on 306 total yards versus No. 1 Tennessee and eventually posted a 27-13 victory. * Georgia’s offense generated 49 points against No. 11 Oregon in the 2022 season opener. The Bulldogs tallied 571 yards of offense on 62 plays, scoring touchdowns on their first seven possessions. Georgia had a season-high 579 yards of offense vs Vandy. * Georgia’s leading receiver against the Ducks was Kenny McIntosh (9-117- 0). Also of note, WR Ladd McConkey scored receiving and rushing touchdowns in the same game for the second time in his career (@ Vanderbilt, 2021) versus Oregon as WR AD Mitchell also snagged a touchdown catch. McConkey accomplished the feat yet again at Mississippi State this season. Mitchell has been limited to four games in 2022 because of an ankle injury. * McConkey is second on the team with 51 catches for 695 yards (13.2 avg.) and five scores. He had a career-long 70-yard touchdown run at Mississippi State. McConkey is also the primary punt returner with 16 for 197 yards, including a career-long 39 yarder versus Georgia Tech.
DEFENSE SETTING THE TONE * The Bulldogs rank second nationally in Scoring Defense, giving up just 12.8 points per contest. The defense has posted 26 scoreless quarters, including holding five teams scoreless in the opening half this year. * Georgia has held six teams to a season low in points, including No. 1 Tennessee (13) and No. 11 Oregon (3). * After missing time with a knee injury, junior DL Jalen Carter, a Lombardi Award finalist, has been a force. In the last six games, he has accounted for 24 tackles, 6.5 TFLs, three sacks and a pair of forced fumbles. * Georgia shut down No. 1 Tennessee to the tune of 13 points after the Vols came in averaging a national best 49.4 points per contest. The 13 points was the lowest scored under head coach Josh Heupel. The Vols did not get a touchdown until 4:15 left in the contest. UT was just 2-of-14 on third downs (14 percent). * Georgia posted its second shutout of the year with a 55-0 win over VU. This marked the 10th shutout in the Kirby Smart era (since 2016), the FBS’ most during that span. * Georgia is allowing teams to convert on third downs only 27 percent of the time and that ranks third nationally. * The 2022 Bulldog defense kept No. 3 Oregon to only a field goal in the season opener. This marked the first time Oregon had failed to score a touchdown in a game since 2017. Late in the fourth quarter, Georgia had an impressive goal line stand late that ended at the two yard line following a 19-play, 87-yard drive that lasted 8:47. * Georgia’s first touchdown allowed this year came at South Carolina in game three with 53 seconds remaining in the game. * The Dogs have only allowed five rushing TDs this year (KSU, UF, #1 UT, GT, #14 LSU).
NO. 1 PURDUE HEADLINES AP TOP 25; MIAMI LEAPS, UNC RETURNS
(AP) — Purdue remained atop The Associated Press men’s college basketball poll for a third straight week
AP Photo transref:INMC112, transref:INMC138, transref:CTJH112, transref:VAEE106, transref:MSG125, transref:FLML116, transref:NEJP114
By AARON BEARD=
AP Basketball Writer=
Purdue remained atop The Associated Press Top 25 men’s college basketball poll for a third straight week, while preseason No. 1 North Carolina returned to the rankings and New Mexico cracked the poll for the first time in eight years.
The Boilermakers earned 40 of 60 first-place votes in Monday’s latest poll, while fellow unbeaten Connecticut earned the other 20 to sit at No. 2 in an unchanged top.
Purdue had never been ranked No. 1 before a one-week stay there last December, and was unranked to start the season. But the Boilermakers made a rapid rise from No. 24 to No. 5 in a one-week span in late November, then climbed to No. 1 on Dec. 12.
The Boilermakers’ win against New Orleans last week marked their first home game with that No. 1 ranking.
“We’ve not had any handouts. We’ve had to work for everything,” coach Matt Painter said afterward, adding: “But we’ve earned it. but we’ve got to keep earning it. This isn’t the season. This is just a third of the season.”
THE TOP TIER
No. 3 Houston, No. 4 Kansas and No. 5 Arizona held their positions as the top five remained in place for a second straight week.
Texas was next at No. 6, followed by Tennessee, Alabama, Arkansas and Gonzaga – the preseason choice at No. 2 that returned to the top 10 after sliding as low as No. 18 earlier this month.
TAR HEELS RETURN
North Carolina is back in the poll at No. 25 after a tumultuous opening to the season.
Returning four starters from last year’s unexpected run to the NCAA title game, the Tar Heels started December by becoming only the sixth team to go from preseason No. 1 to unranked since at least the 1961-62 season. That came after a run of four straight losses.
But UNC has won four straight since, the past two coming against Big Ten teams – Ohio State on Dec. 17 and Michigan last week – to regroup.
Miami had the week’s biggest jump after a win against Virginia, climbing eight spots to No. 14 for its highest ranking since the 2017-18 season. No. 20 Auburn rose three spots. In all, 10 teams moved up from last week.
Virginia took the week’s biggest tumble, falling seven spots to No. 13. Mississippi State was close behind, falling six spots to No. 21. Duke was the only other team to slide, falling three spots to No. 17.
Seven teams held their positions from last week, with No. 12 Baylor and No. 19 Kentucky joining the unchanged top five.
Xavier and New Mexico are tied at No. 22, while No. 24 West Virginia joined them in new additions to the poll this season. For the Lobos, it marks the first time they’ve cracked the AP Top 25 since March 2014.
FAREWELL (FOR NOW)
Illinois (No. 16), Virginia Tech (No. 21), Marquette (No. 24) and Arizona State (No. 25) fell out from last week’s poll.
The Southeastern Conference led all leagues with six ranked teams, followed by the Big 12 with five and the Atlantic Coast Conference with four.
The Big Ten had three ranked teams while the Pac-12 and Big East each had two. The American Athletic, West Coast and Mountain West conferences each had one.
NETS PUSH WINNING STREAK TO 9 WITH 125-117 WIN OVER CAVS
CLEVELAND (AP) The only drama surrounding the Brooklyn Nets right now is when they’re going to lose again.
Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant scored 32 points apiece and the Nets extended their longest winning streak since moving to Brooklyn to nine games with a 125-117 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday night.
The Nets withstood a sensational 46-point performance by Darius Garland, who single-handedly brought the Cavs back in the fourth.
Brooklyn has won 13 of 14 and is beginning to look like an NBA title contender after months of distractions – mainly revolving around Irving and his off-court antics.
“To be honest, we’ve always been about basketball,” said Durant, who fouled out in the final two minutes. “The outside noise makes it seem like we don’t care about the game, but so many voices speak about our locker room who don’t have any idea what’s going on.
“We’ve always been about the game.”
T.J. Warren added a season-high 23 points for the Nets, who handled one of the teams they’re chasing in the Eastern Conference standings after beating Milwaukee by 18 on Dec. 23.
Durant moved past Tim Duncan (26,496) into 15th place on the career scoring list when he dropped a 20-foot jumper in the second quarter. Next up for Durant is Dominique Wilkins (26,668).
“At some point, you’ve got to be able to celebrate some small wins,” Durant said of overtaking Duncan. “To be able to pass a legend, it’s something I’ll call my folks about tonight. I know that I’ve got more to do.”
Irving made a season-high seven 3-pointers – and two key free throws with 41.1 seconds left – while being booed nearly every time he touched the ball by fans who cheered him during six seasons with Cleveland.
Still, he was happy to be back where he began.
“Cleveland is never in the rearview,” he said.
Garland finished 14 of 20 from the field and added eight assists with just one turnover in 40 minutes to lead the Cavs, who dropped their second straight and are 16-4 at home.
Donovan Mitchell added just 15 points – 13 below his average – on 5 of 16 shooting while being guarded primarily by Brooklyn’s Ben Simmons.
“They came out and punched first,” Mitchell said. “They have some of the best shooters in the league. I have to be better. We have to be better, and we will.”
The Cavs were only down 12 entering the fourth before Irving scored eight quick points, the last on a long 3-pointer from way beyond the top of the key to give Brooklyn its biggest lead at 102-83.
However, Garland wasn’t done (he scored 18 in the fourth) and pulled the Cavs within 121-117 with 44 seconds left. With a chance to make it tighter, Garland’s runner in the lane was blocked by Nic Claxton and the Nets survived.
Irving, who made his pro debut for Cleveland 11 years ago on Dec. 26, dropped four 3-pointers in the final three minutes of the first half and the Nets closed the second quarter with a 21-6 run to open a 64-49 halftime lead.
The Nets are finally playing like the powerhouse many expected. Coach Jacque Vaughn, who took over when Steve Nash was fired after seven games, was asked before the game what was at the heart of the team’s rise.
“Basketball,” he said.
Afterward, Vaughn complemented his team for staying locked in.
“We stripped our playbook, and we created a little momentum,” he said. “Guys are playing extremely free of mind and they’ve done an unbelievable job keeping the focus on basketball.”
Nets: Durant previously passed Alex English, Vince Carter, Kevin Garnett, John Havlicek and Paul Pierce on the scoring list this season. … G Seth Curry (non-COVID illness) was a pregame scratch … Joe Harris (left knee) is not traveling with the team. Harris underwent an MRI that “showed soreness and swelling,” Vaughn said.
Cavaliers: Made their first 16 free-throw attempts. … Coach J.B. Bickerstaff said G Ricky Rubio (knee) will not return before the end of the calendar year, but the 32-year-old remains on track to rejoin the team in 2023. … The league’s best defensive team, Cleveland has held opponents below 100 points an NBA-high 12 times.
Nets: Visit Atlanta on Wednesday night.
Cavaliers: Visit Indiana on Thursday night.
GEORGE, CLIPPERS RALLY LATE, BEAT PISTONS 142-131 IN OT
DETROIT (AP) Paul George scored 32 points and the Los Angeles Clippers overcame a 14-point deficit in the final 3:34 of regulation to beat the Detroit Pistons 142-131 in overtime on Monday night.
Clippers coach Tyronn Lue pulled his starters when his team fell behind 126-112, but a lineup of Luke Kennard, Terance Mann, Amir Coffey, Nicolas Batum and Moses Brown finished the fourth quarter with a 16-2 run. Mann hit a tying jumper with 5 seconds left in regulation.
“You have to give those guys credit for staying ready,” Lue said. “They came out and played with some urgency. Amir and Moses hadn’t played in the game, so for them to come in and produce like the way they did was huge.”
Los Angeles then outscored Detroit 14-3 in the extra period.
Ivica Zubac added 12 points and 15 rebounds for Los Angeles, which has beaten Detroit eight straight times. The Clippers had seven players score in double figures.
Bojan Bogdanovic led Detroit with 23 points, including the Pistons’ only field goal of the last eight minutes. Isaiah Stewart added 21 points for NBA-worst Detroit.
“We were down 15 points in the third quarter, fought our way back, got the lead and had a comfortable lead with three minutes left,” Pistons Dwane Casey said. “They threw in the towel and we have to learn how to win that game. I’m proud of the way we put ourselves into position to beat one of the best teams in the West, but we didn’t get it.”
George scored five points in the first minute of overtime, and baskets by Kennard and Mann gave the Clippers a 138-131 lead with 2:45 left.
The Clippers led by five at the half and expanded the margin to 88-73 midway through the third quarter. However, the Pistons answered with a 21-5 run, taking a 92-91 lead on Stewart’s dunk.
Stewart’s 3-pointer made it 119-112 with 5:23 left. After a Clippers miss, Bogdanovic’s short jumper put the Pistons up by nine and forced Lue to call timeout.
Stewart’s three-point play with 3:34 left capped off a 53-24 stretch that started with 6:48 left in the third quarter. From there, the Pistons shot 1 of 12 with five turnovers and two missed free throws.
“They took their starters out and we thought the game was over,” Stewart said. “We had the lead and we didn’t finish the game. That’s completely on us, not the coaches.”
Bogdanovic hit a 3-pointer on Detroit’s first possession of overtime, but the Pistons missed their last five shots and turned the ball over three times.
“I thought our defense is what changed the game,” Lue said. “We were rebounding the ball and we had deflections and steals.”
Clippers: Haven’t lost to the Pistons since Jan. 12, 2019, when they fell 109-104 at Detroit. … Kennard scored 18 points, and Marcus Morris, John Wall and Norman Powell each had 16.
Pistons: Came into the game averaging a league-high 46.7 bench points in December, but were outscored 61-39 by the Los Angeles reserves. … Had eight players in double figures for the first time since Nov. 22 against the New York Knicks. … Jalen Duren had 15 points and 12 rebounds.
GETTING EVERYONE INVOLVED
The Clippers used 11 players and all of them scored, with Coffey and Brown the only two who didn’t reach five points.
Clippers: Visit the Toronto Raptors on Tuesday night.
Pistons: Host the Orlando Magic on Wednesday night.
HEAT HOLD OFF TIMBERWOLVES 113-110, GET BACK TO .500 MARK
MIAMI (AP) Close games are becoming the norm for the Miami Heat.
Max Strus scored 19 points, Kyle Lowry added 18 points and nine assists, and the Heat got back to .500 by holding off the Minnesota Timberwolves 113-110 on Monday night.
It was Miami’s 34th game of the season – and half have been decided by five points or less. The Heat are 11-6 in such games.
“Since we’re in these kind of games every single night, there’s not a sense of panic,” coach Erik Spoelstra said.
Orlando Robinson scored 15 points and grabbed nine rebounds, seven of them on the offensive end for Miami – a big plus on the way to the Heat attempting 102 shots to Minnesota’s 79. Tyler Herro had 14 points for the Heat (17-17), who were without Jimmy Butler (ankle) and Bam Adebayo (illness).
Anthony Edwards led all scorers with 29 points for Minnesota (16-18). Naz Reid had 21 points and 10 rebounds for the Timberwolves, who got 16 points from Jaden McDaniels, 13 from DeAngelo Russell, and 10 apiece from Austin Rivers and Rudy Gobert.
“We just need to keep our minds in the right place,” Gobert said.
Herro beat the shot clock with a long jumper with 33.2 seconds left – originally called a 3-pointer, then ruled a 2 – for a five-point lead. Edwards made a runner on the next Minnesota possession and got fouled but missed the free throw, keeping the margin three points.
Minnesota didn’t foul on the ensuing Miami trip, and forced Caleb Martin into a missed 3 with 2.5 seconds left. But the Timberwolves never got a shot off that could have tied the game, a turnover ensuring that Miami would escape.
“We’ve just got to be better throughout the course of the game, to ensure that we’re not in that position,” Reid said.
Miami was not only without Adebayo, but backup Dewayne Dedmon (left foot) was also out. That left rookie Nikola Jovic starting at center, and Robinson – on a two-way deal – backing him up.
“We had a lot of guys step up,” Strus said. “Orlando Robinson was huge tonight. Huge.”
Timberwolves: Alex Rodriguez, who grew up in Miami and has been to plenty of Heat games over the years, was courtside, as would be expected. He became part of the Timberwolves’ ownership group last year. … Minnesota was again without Kyle Anderson (back spasms).
Heat: It was the 13th game Butler has missed this season, the fourth that Adebayo has missed and the second that they were both sidelined. Miami lost 107-106 at Washington without them on Nov. 18. … Miami Hurricanes football coach Mario Cristobal and his family were in the crowd. … Gabe Vincent (knee) played for the first time since Dec. 5 and scored 11 points. He missed nine games.
Heat guard Duncan Robinson’s first 3-pointer was the 800th of his career, and he got there faster than anyone else – 263 games, 25 fewer than Dallas star Luka Doncic needed. Robinson is now the fastest to 200, 300, 400, 500, 600, 700 and 800 career 3-pointers. Lauri Markkanen was the fastest to 100, needing only 41 games.
Robinson now has 802 career 3s, four behind Tim Hardaway’s Heat record.
Timberwolves coach Chris Finch said he checks on injured center Karl-Anthony Towns often, primarily just to ask about his well-being and not the progress of his calf injury. Towns hasn’t played since Nov. 28 and Monday was his 13th consecutive missed game. “He’s doing well, but still a multitude of weeks out for us,” Finch said.
Timberwolves: Visit the New Orleans Pelicans on Wednesday.
Heat: Host the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday.
PORTER’S 36 POINTS LEAD ROCKETS PAST BULLS 133-118
CHICAGO (AP) Kevin Porter Jr. scored a season-high 36 points and the Houston Rockets used a 17-1 run in the third quarter to beat the Chicago Bulls 133-118 on Monday night, snapping a five-game losing streak.
Alperan Sengun added 25 points and Jalen Green had 24 for Houston, which scored the first 10 points of the game but blew an 18-point lead before its third-quarter spurt.
“This was definitely one of those games where you saw the result of us learning and getting better,” Porter said.
DeMar DeRozan scored 31 for the Bulls, who won their previous three games. DeRozan passed George Gervin for 44th place on the career scoring list with 20,727 points.
After taking their first lead on a 3-pointer by Zach LaVine with 30 seconds left in the second quarter, the Bulls surged to a 74-67 advantage early in the third before the Rockets regrouped.
Chicago cut the deficit to 109-100 early in the fourth, but Porter countered with two consecutive 3-pointers. The Rockets made 50 of 90 shots, scored 60 points in the paint and outrebounded the Bulls 56-43.
“We have a competitive group, probably tired of losing, disappointed with how we finished the homestand, and we have a group of good guys who did the right things,” Rockets coach Stephen Silas said.
It marked the first time in five games that DeRozan, LaVine and Nikola Vucevic failed to score at least 20 points apiece. LaVine finished with 22 points and Vucevic had 10.
“We didn’t do a good job defensively,” LaVine said. “One guy (Porter) got confidence, and the rest of their team got confidence.”
LaVine, who missed his first five shots and was assessed a technical foul with 2:18 left in the first quarter, helped spark a late second-quarter rally.
Coby White stole a pass, and his behind-the-back dribble near the sideline at midcourt enabled him to spot LaVine for a dunk that closed the deficit to 61-59. Following a turnover, LaVine sank a 3 to put the Bulls in front.
Green countered with a 3-pointer, but Goran Dragic drained a 3 at the buzzer to cap a 39-point second quarter and give the Bulls a 65-64 edge at halftime.
The Rockets scored the first 10 points, and Sengun sparked Houston to a 23-5 lead thanks to his 4-for-4 shooting and 11 points less than five minutes into the game. They scored 22 of their 36 first-quarter points in the paint.
Houston guard Eric Gordon returned after missing five games because of a bruised left thumb and scored 12 points.
Sengun grabbed 11 rebounds, marking his 10th double-double of the season. He scored 20 points or more for the sixth time.
Bulls: G Alex Caruso (concussion) missed his third consecutive game despite passing all protocols. The problem, according to coach Billy Donovan, is Caruso’s right shoulder sprain that has prevented him from performing contact drills on the court. … G Javonte Green (right knee soreness) missed his fifth consecutive game after going through pregame work. … F Derrick Jones Jr. (left ankle sprain) missed his third straight game.
Rockets: At Boston on Tuesday.
Bulls: Host Milwaukee on Wednesday.
VASSELL, JOHNSON HELP SPURS HOLD ON TO BEAT JAZZ, 126-122
SAN ANTONIO (AP) Devin Vassell had 24 points, Keldon Johnson added 21 points and the San Antonio Spurs fended off the Utah Jazz in the final minutes for a 126-122 victory Monday night.
“We just stayed together. We persevered and came out on top,” Johnson said. “I feel like they are a good team and good teams make runs. We withstood that run and won the game.”
The Spurs led 121-110 with 2 1/2 minutes remaining. The Jazz scored seven points in 33 seconds, but they could not complete the rally.
Jakob Poeltl added 16 points for San Antonio.
Lauri Markkanen had 32 points and Jordan Clarkson added 25 points for Utah, which had won two straight.
Clarkson’s 3-pointer pulled Utah within 123-120 with 30.1 seconds remaining but Tre Jones tossed in a floater 23 seconds later as San Antonio snapped a two-game skid.
“I think we came into this year knowing we were going to be in a lot of close games,” Jazz coach Will Hardy said. “We weren’t going to be a team necessarily that was built to blow people out, so we needed to be clutch in those situations.”
Jones, who finished with 11 points, made the Spurs’ final two field goal attempts.
The game started 40 minutes later than scheduled due to what the Spurs termed “a potential security threat, which has impacted fans entering the AT&T Center.”
“We were just about to run out of the tunnel to come out for warmups, but they told us to go back to the locker room,” Markkanen said. “It’s a weird thing. That’s the first time I’ve experienced that, but I think guys did a great job of just staying locked in and controlling what we can control.”
The delay or a weekend holiday break for both teams likely contributed to a sluggish start that resulted in a combined 19 points in the opening six minutes.
STUDENT VS. TEACHER
Hardy spent 11 seasons with San Antonio, working his way up from an intern to a lead assistant under coach Gregg Popovich.
Hardy spent one season as an assistant at Boston before Utah hired him as the ninth coach in franchise history.
Despite all his success, Hardy said he still feels like a 22-year-old intern at times when he is around Popovich and Milwaukee head coach and former Spurs assistant Mike Budenholzer.
Players and staff for both teams, stadium employees and a few thousand fans were already inside when a potential security threat was announced. No one was evacuated, but no more fans were allowed to enter for about half an hour.
Fans were allowed in again after law enforcement determined there was no threat, leading to a 40-minute delay.
Jazz: Markkanen has scored at least 30 points in eight games this season. … Kelly Olynyk missed his fourth straight game with a sprained left ankle. . F Rudy Gay was honored by the Spurs prior to tip-off with a video highlighting his four seasons with the team.
Spurs: San Antonio did not have any injuries to report for the first time in more than a month. The Spurs starting lineup played together for just the third time in the last 12 games and for only the 14th time in 33 games this season. . San Antonio will complete its seventh of 14 back-to-back games this season on Tuesday in Oklahoma City. The Spurs are 2-5 in the opening game and 1-5 in the closing contest.
Jazz: At Golden State on Wednesday.
Spurs: At Oklahoma City on Tuesday.
NURKIC RALLIES BLAZERS PAST HORNETS ON LILLARD’S BIG NIGHT
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) Jusuf Nurkic scored 27 points, including a career-high five 3-pointers, to go with 14 rebounds and six assists as the Portland Trail Blazers defeated the Charlotte Hornets 124-113 on Monday night.
Jerami Grant led all scorers with 32 points for Portland. Damian Lillard had 17 points and nine assists on a night when he was honored for becoming the leading scorer in Trail Blazers history.
LaMelo Ball paced the Hornets with 25 points.
Portland trailed by 14 in the second quarter but Nurkic sparked the turnaround, finishing with 21 points, 10 rebounds and four assists after halftime.
Nurkic hit his career-best fourth 3 with 8:55 left to give the Trail Blazers a 108-99 lead that Portland pushed as high as 15 before it was over.
Grant’s dunk with 1:42 remaining in the second quarter ignited the Blazers and their crowd, helping them close the first half on an 8-2 spurt.
Charlotte led 67-61 at halftime.
A 3-pointer by Nurkic tied it at 67, the first tie since the first quarter. A layup by Josh Hart put Portland up 72-70, prompting a Hornets timeout early in the third period.
Portland led by 13 in the third, but a pair of 3s by Ball to close the quarter cut it to 101-95 heading into the fourth.
The Hornets took advantage of eight Blazers turnovers in the first quarter to take a 34-30 lead.
It was Portland’s first home game since Lillard surpassed Clyde Drexler as the leading scorer in team history. Lillard was saluted with a standing ovation in the first quarter, as well as video messages from former teammates, coaches and current NBA players, including Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant. The Trail Blazers held a ceremony for Lillard on the court after the game.
Hornets: A replay challenge by coach Steve Clifford took two points off the board for Portland with 3:36 left. … Reserve big man Nick Richards missed his first game of the season. While the Hornets are without a key piece, they’re thankful he’s not out for longer. “Right after the game, it looked like it could be longer,” Clifford said. “I think actually they feel good about that. I don’t know day to day, but I do think he’s making good progress.” … Clifford also said guard Dennis Smith Jr. has been practicing with contact, but added he didn’t know an exact date for his return.
Trail Blazers: Nurkic also had two steals and two blocks. … Justise Winslow will be sidelined for two weeks with an ankle sprain. Winslow was injured last week in a loss to Oklahoma City. “He does so much for us on both sides of the floor,” coach Chauncey Billups said. “It (stinks) to lose him for that amount of time. I think we all feel a little relieved because it could have been worse.”
Charlotte: Host the Utah Jazz on Saturday night.
Portland: Host the Minnesota Timberwolves on Saturday night.
BIG 10 HOCKEY THIS WEEK
• The last week of 2022 sees five Big Ten teams in action, including two making appearances at holiday tournaments. No. 11/11 Michigan State travels to Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids to take part in the 57th edition of the Great Lakes Invitational, college hockey’s longest-running tournament. The Spartans, who have won 12 GLI titles, face Ferris State on Dec. 27 and either No. 17/16 Michigan Tech or No. 18/19 Western Michigan on Dec. 28. Wisconsin looks to defend its title at the second Kwik Trip Holiday Face-Off being held at the Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee. Head Coach Tony Granato goes for his 100th career win as the Badgers take on Lake Superior State on Dec. 28 and either Clarkson or No. 15/15 Massachusetts the following night. No. 5/5 Penn State engages in a home-and-home series with No. 20/20 RIT on Dec. 30-31 while No. 19/17 Notre Dame will host Alaska Fairbanks on Dec. 31-Jan. 1. No. 3/1 Minnesota travels to Bemidji State for an exhibition game on New Year’s Eve. No. 7/8 Michigan and No. 14/14 Ohio State are idle this week.
• Heading into this week’s action, the Big Ten sports the best record versus nonconference competition with a .758 winning percentage (44-13-3) against the other five leagues and independent teams. The Big Ten led all conferences with a .699 percentage last season.
• The Big Ten is well represented in the Pairwise Rankings, a statistical formula that emulates the selection process for at-large bids to the 16-team NCAA Tournament. The latest Pairwise features six Big Ten teams inside the Top 16 –– Minnesota (No. 1), Penn State (No. 5), Michigan State (No. 8), Ohio State (No. 10), Michigan (No. 11) and Notre Dame (No. 16).
• Ten players from the Big Ten are playing for the United States at the 2023 IIHF World Junior Championship, which began Dec. 26 and runs through Jan. 5 in Moncton, New Brunswick and Halifax, Nova Scotia. Michigan sophomore Luke Hughes captains the squad and is joined by Wolverine teammates Gavin Brindley, Seamus Casey, Dylan Duke and Rutger McGroarty. Minnesota has four players on the team in Ryan Chesley, Logan Cooley, Luke Mittelstadt and Jimmy Snuggerud and Wisconsin is represented by Charlie Stramel. Cooley, Hughes and Stramel played for Team USA at last summer’s WJC. Michigan freshman Adam Fantilli is the lone collegiate player skating for Canada, which captured gold at the event last summer.
• The Big Ten schedule includes 57 games to be carried by national and regional networks this season, including 23 games on Big Ten Network. The Michigan-Michigan State series on Dec. 9-10 delivered strong viewing audiences according to Nielsen ratings. The series opener drew 81,000 viewers, the highest mark of the season to that point and was topped the next night by an audience of 113,000, the second-most watched regular-season hockey game in BTN history.
COMPLETE RELEASE: https://bigten.org/documents/2022/12/26//HK122622R.pdf?id=7787
TOP INDIANA RELEASES
TURNOVERS, THIRD DOWNS SINK NICK FOLES, COLTS IN WEEK 16 LOSS TO LOS ANGELES CHARGERS
Nick Foles threw three interceptions and was sacked seven times, and the Colts’ offense didn’t convert any of their 10 third down tries in Monday night’s 20-3 Week 16 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers at Lucas Oil Stadium.
For a Colts offense that entered Week 16 with the NFL’s highest turnover total, third-lowest scoring average, sixth-highest sack rate and seventh-lowest third down conversion percentage, it was unfortunately more of the same even with a different quarterback taking the snaps.
“We had a really good week of practice,” Foles said. “Obviously, the execution wasn’t at the level that we needed to win this game and that’s unfortunate. This would have been – we haven’t done a good enough job this year and this one was a tough one. You know, the guys are fighting every single play, giving everything they have and we just fell short.”
Interim head coach Jeff Saturday hoped inserting Foles as the Colts’ starting quarterback would lead to more downfield shots, which would not only pick up explosive yardage through the air but also would alleviate some of the pressure on the team’s run game, which entered Monday 26th in the NFL with an average of 4.0 yards per carry. Foles did take some shots early – he had three passes travel 20 or more yards beyond the line of scrimmage in the first quarter – but was unable to complete any of those throws, and was intercepted on one of them.
Foles threw his second interception later in the first quarter, and the Colts were forced to back off some of those downfield throws as the game progressed.
“I thought we had some shots early,” Saturday said. “Obviously, the turnovers hurt you. And they kind of dissuade you from continuing to challenge it.”
The Colts’ offense also frequently found itself in difficult situations on third down – of the team’s 10 third down tries, they needed on average 9.5 yards to pick up a first down, and only one of those attempts came within five yards of the line to gain. While the Colts did convert a fourth down try into a first down in the first quarter, those issues on third down – coupled with the Chargers converting eight of 18 third downs – greatly contributed to the final score.
“Just too many mistakes,” wide receiver Parris Campbell said. “That’s just kind of been the name of our season, not being able to take care of the ball, shooting ourselves in the foot.”
Foles finished his first start – and first regular-season action with the Colts – with 17 completions on 29 attempts for 143 yards with no touchdowns and three interceptions. Saturday said he didn’t consider putting Sam Ehlinger in the game; if there was a bright spot offensively, it was the tough running of running back Zack Moss, who carried 12 times for 65 yards (5.4 yards/carry).
Defensively, the Colts battled to keep a lid on Justin Herbert and the Chargers’ downfield passing attack. The Chargers averaged just 4.7 yards per play – about a half-yard lower than their season average – but were able to stay on the field with a handful of critical third down conversions, which resulted in two touchdowns and two field goals.
“I thought we came out and fought the whole game,” linebacker Bobby Okereke said. “Obviously some things on offense didn’t go our way, but to the last snap defensively, we fought. And that speaks to the character of the guys in the room. We got a lot of vets, a lot of prideful guys. We’re gonna fight to the last whistle, I thought that’s what we did today.”
The Colts have now lost five games in a row and sit at 4-10-1 on the season. But after the game, Saturday, Foles and players re-iterated that record, and this losing streak, are not the product of sub-par effort – and that the guys on the coaching staff and in the locker room still are doing what they can to try to close out the 2022 season with a couple of wins.
“Guys at this level, this is what – you know, there are so many kids out there that dream about playing at this level, and you want to believe that guys are going to give it everything they have every day,” Foles said. “Because this is something you look forward to as a kid. And it’s just unfortunate sometimes you can give it everything you have and the outcome is not what you thought. And that’s the hard part of this game.
“But there’s also the time where you give everything you have and you win games and then you keep winning. And then you win a lot of games and then you make the playoffs. And I’m just fortunate I’ve seen both of them. And the biggest thing is, you know, you can be fighting every single down and lose a game like we did. But I’ve also been on some teams where we fought and we win. So, it’s just a unique game. That’s why we keep playing. It’s hard. It’s a very difficult game. But you learn a lot about yourself and the people you play with.”
GAME REWIND: PACERS 93, PELICANS 113
The Pacers had two impressive road wins heading into Christmas, but their strong play did not carry over into their first game after the holiday.
Indiana struggled from the field and was outmuscled on the glass on Monday night in New Orleans, as the shorthanded Pelicans took it to Indiana. New Orleans (21-12) built a 23-point lead in the first half and never looked back, cruising to a 113-93 victory over Indiana (17-17).
The Pelicans were without six players on Monday, including All-Star forward Zion Williamson, who was held out for return to competition reconditioning after missing New Orleans’ last two games before Christmas while in the NBA’s health and safety protocols.
But the shorthanded Pelicans still had plenty of size and pummeled the Pacers on the boards, outrebounding Indiana 54-36 overall and 16-6 on the offensive glass, outscoring the Blue & Gold 26-8 in second chance points.
On the other end, the Pacers endured several prolonged scoring droughts, particularly in a dismal first half, and suffered a rare blowout loss.
The Pacers actually seized control early with a 10-0 run that broke a 6-6 tie and featured an Aaron Nesmith dunk and back-to-back threes by Myles Turner and Andrew Nembhard.
But immediately after that spurt, Indiana went cold, converting just one field goal over the final 6:56 of the first quarter. The Pelicans capitalized with an 18-2 run to close the frame, taking a 24-18 lead into the second quarter. Veterans CJ McCollum and Jonas Valanciunas combined for New Orleans’ first 11 points in that run.
Rookie guard Bennedict Mathurin ended Indiana’s dry spell with a layup and a three in the first two minutes of the second quarter. That trimmed the deficit to 27-23, but unfortunately Indiana immediately endured another drought.
Willy Hernandez scored seven points during a 16-0 Pelicans run as the Pacers went without a point for another 3:56. That drought ended with a three-point possession, where Tyrese Haliburton converted a free throw after a technical foul and then Isaiah Jackson scored on a layup, but New Orleans continued to add to its lead.
The hosts led by as many as 23 and took a 19-point lead into the intermission, limiting Indiana to a season-low 38 points over the first two quarters.
“A good start for the first four minutes and then really bad last 44 minutes,” Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle said. “Disappointing. But the story of the game was the number of loose balls that they got that we didn’t get.”
While the Pacers were hoping to start their rally out of halftime, the Pelicans thwarted those plans. Valanciunas scored four quick points, Jaxson Hayes converted a layup, and Naji Marshall knocked down a three as New Orleans opened the third quarter with a 9-2 spurt.
The Pelicans led 74-45 following two free throws by Hayes with 6:53 remaining in the third quarter. The Pacers finally got the ball moving offensively and scored 17 points over the next four-and-a-half minutes, but still trailed by 22.
Indiana went scoreless over the final 2:05, while New Orleans closed out the quarter with Graham and Naji Marshall combining for back-to-back threes — the latter banking in a one-legged shot at the buzzer — to give the Pelicans a 90-62 advantage entering the fourth.
Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle did not play any of his starters in the final frame, which featured little drama other than rounding out the final box score.
Mathurin led Indiana with 15 points off the bench, going 4-for-11 from the field but 6-for-6 from the free throw line.
Turner led the starters with 14 points on 5-of-8 shooting, eight rebounds, and two blocks. Buddy Hield added 12 points on 4-of-7 3-point shooting and Nesmith tallied 10 and five rebounds.
Coming off a career-high 43 points in Friday’s win in Miami, Haliburton missed his first six shots on Monday and finished with 12 points on 4-of-12 shooting, six assists, and two steals in 31 minutes.
Marshall had a game-high 22 points for New Orleans, going 8-for-14 from the field and 4-for-9 from beyond the arc. Valanciunas added 20 points on 10-of-18 shooting, 12 rebounds, and five assists, while McCollum contributed 19 points, seven boards, and six dimes.
The Pacers will return to Indianapolis to host Atlanta on Tuesday on the second night of a back-to-back. That contest will tip off a four-game homestand that also includes games against the Cavaliers, Clippers, and Raptors.
Inside the Numbers
The Pacers’ 38 points in the first half were their fewest in any half this season. Their previous low was 39 points in the second half against Miami on Nov. 4 and their previous low over the first two quarters was 42 against the Heat on Dec. 12.
After going two games without reaching double figures, Mathurin recorded his 29th double-digit scoring performance of his rookie season.
Hield has made at least four 3-pointers in nine of his last 12 games.
Other than Hield, the Pacers struggled from beyond the arc, going just 9-for-35 (25.7 percent) on the night. Those nine 3-pointers matched a season low for Indiana first set in a loss at the Clippers on Nov. 27.
Monday was Indiana’s first game where the score was not within single digits at any point in the fourth quarter since a 116-100 loss in Portland on Dec. 4.
The Pacers trailed by as many as 29 points in New Orleans, the second-largest deficit they’ve faced all season. Their largest deficit was 32 points in a loss at Sacramento on Nov. 30.
You Can Quote Me On That
“They just played harder than us. Simple as that. I think over the course of 82 games you have games where you don’t shoot the way you want to, you don’t play up to your ability — that happens to every team. But obviously frustrating — effort is a big thing you can control. We just didn’t have the right energy, the right effort today.” -Haliburton on his takeaways from the game
“This is a top team in the West. I don’t care if Zion’s playing or not. These guys have been beating good teams all year when he’s been out. McCollum’s a great player and Valanciunas is very underrated.” -Carlisle on the Pelicans being shorthanded
“I thought we got stagnant at times and our inability to get stops led to a lot of our issues on offense. Teams are really concentrating on Tyrese, keeping him out of the lane. We didn’t have a particularly great shooting night…It was a struggle.” -Carlisle on what went wrong offensively
“We were in the right spot early in the game. Had a good lift about us, good bounce about us. But they responded how they’re supposed to and we just never responded back.” -Haliburton
Stat of the Night
The Pelicans outscored Indiana 26-8 in second chance points and led the category 24-2 before some putbacks by the Pacers’ reserves over the final minutes. Monday was the second-largest margin a Pacers opponent has outscored the Blue & Gold in second chance points this season. Brooklyn outscored Indiana 37-17 in a win on Dec. 10.
The Pacers and Pelicans have now split their season series for the third straight year. The Pacers beat New Orleans 129-122 at Gainbridge Fieldhouse on Nov. 7.
Nesmith returned to the lineup after missing Friday’s game in Miami with a sprained right ankle.
In addition to Williamson, the Pelicans were without Dyson Daniels (non-COVID illness), Trey Murphy III (non-COVID illness), Herbert Jones (health and safety protocols), Brandon Ingram (left great toe contusion), and E.J. Liddell (right knee ACL recovery).
Pacers second-year forward Terry Taylor rejoined the team Monday after starring for the Fort Wayne Mad Ants at the G League Winter Showcase in Las Vegas last week, where he was named to the NBA G League All-Showcase Team. Taylor played the final 6:36 on Monday with the Pacers, scoring four points and collecting two offensive rebounds.
The Pacers will be back at Gainbridge Fieldhouse after Christmas to host Trae Young and the Atlanta Hawks on Tuesday, Dec. 27 at 7:30 PM ET.
GAME PREVIEW: PACERS VS HAWKS
After a disappointing effort on Monday night in New Orleans, the Pacers (17-17) will hope to bounce back on their home court on Tuesday when they host Trae Young and the Hawks (17-16) on the second night of a back-to-back.
It will be the first meeting this season between Indiana and Atlanta, who enter the night separated by just half a game in the Eastern Conference standings.
The Pacers were riding high after victories in Boston and Miami heading into Christmas, but no momentum from those two wins carried through the holiday. Indiana struggled from the field and was dominated on the glass in a 113-93 loss to the Pelicans, where they trailed by 29 and never threatened after halftime.
The night went so poorly that the Pacers will be glad they get to get back on the court so quickly. Head coach Rick Carlisle held out all five of his starters for the fourth quarter on Monday in hopes of preserving their energy for the second night of the back-to-back.
The Hawks, on the other hand, will be well rested, having not played since Friday. Atlanta is led by its All-Star backcourt, making a blockbuster trade over the summer to acquire Dejounte Murray from San Antonio to pair him with Young.
The Hawks have hovered just above .500 for most of the season, but Young and Murray are both having productive seasons statistically. Young leads the team in scoring at 27.5 points per game and ranks second in the NBA behind Pacers guard Tyrese Haliburton in assists at 9.9 per contest. Murray has averaged 20.6 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 6.2 assists over his first 28 games in Atlanta.
Pacers: G – Tyrese Haliburton, G – Andrew Nembhard, F – Buddy Hield, F – Aaron Nesmith, C – Myles Turner
Hawks: G – Trae Young, G – Dejounte Murray, F – De’Andre Hunter, F – John Collins, C – Onyeka Okongwu
Pacers: Aaron Nesmith – questionable (right ankle sprain), Jalen Smith – questionable (left ankle sprain), Kendall Brown – out (right tibia stress reaction), Daniel Theis – out (right knee surgery)
Hawks: De’Andre Hunter – questionable (left ankle sprain), Vit Krejci – questionable (left ankle sprain), Clint Capela – out (right calf strain), Jarrett Culver – out (non-COVID illness)
March 28, 2022: With just eight available players, the Pacers lost to the Hawks in a shootout at Gainbridge Fieldhouse, 132-123.
Buddy Hield led Indiana with 26 points on 10-of-15 shooting (5-of-7 from 3-point range) and Tyrese Haliburton added 25 points and 13 assists, but it wasn’t enough to overcome Atlanta, which shot 54.7 percent from the field.
Both teams made 17 3-pointers in the game. The Hawks’ sharp shooting came primarily from Bogdan Bogdanovic (a game-high 29 points while going 5-for-7 from 3-point range) and Kevin Huerter (22 points on 6-of-10 3-point shooting). Trae Young went just 4-for-13 from the field but still managed to record a double-double with 14 points and 16 assists.
Keifer Sykes scored 16 points for Indiana in the loss, while Goga Bitadze added 14. Lance Stephenson (13 points) and Terry Taylor (11 points) both reached double figures off the bench.
The Hawks swept a four-game season series with Indiana in 2021-22, the first time Atlanta won the season series with the Blue & Gold since 2014-15.
The Pacers and Hawks will play three times in the regular season in 2022-23. They will meet once more at Gainbridge Fieldhouse on Jan. 13 and in Atlanta on March 25.
Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle and Hawks head coach Nate McMillan rank third and fourth among active head coaches on the career wins list. Carlisle has 878 career wins, including 223 with the Pacers, while McMillan has 748 career victories, including 183 with Indiana from 2016-20.
The Pacers are 5-1 on the season when playing on the second night of a back-to-back.
Broadcast Information (TV and Radio Listings >>)
TV: Bally Sports Indiana – Chris Denari (play-by-play), Quinn Buckner (analyst), Jeremiah Johnson (sideline reporter/host)
Radio: 93.5/107.5 The Fan – Mark Boyle (play-by-play), Eddie Gill (analyst), Pat Boylan (sideline reporter/host)
The Pacers will be back at Gainbridge Fieldhouse after Christmas to host Trae Young and the Atlanta Hawks on Tuesday, Dec. 27 at 7:30 PM ET.
PURDUE FRESHMAN BRADY ALLEN ENTERS TRANSFER PORTAL
Monday Purdue freshman quarterback Brady Allen announced Monday that he is entering the transfer portal on Twitter.
“Dear Purdue fans, teammates, coaches, and staff. It’s been an awesome experience wearing the black and gold. I am thankful for the relationships and memories I’ve made over the last year. I made a decision to attend Purdue University, and represent our home state over three years ago. It was a decision that I put a lot of time and effort into. A decision that I never swayed from. However, sometimes the best plans don’t work out, and you have to deviate from them to do what’s best for your future. After many thoughts and prayers I’ve decided to enter my name in the transfer portal.”
Allen was the 2021 IndyStar Mr. Football from Gibson Southern High School and was rated a 4-star prospect.
COLLEGE FOOTBALL NEWS GATOR BOWL PREVIEW
Notre Dame vs South Carolina How To Watch
Date: Friday, December 30
Game Time: 3:30 ET
Venue: TIAA Bank Stadium, Jacksonville, FL
How To Watch: ESPN
Record: Notre Dame (8-4), South Carolina (8-4)
Notre Dame vs South Carolina TaxSlayer Gator Bowl 5 Things To Know
– Notre Dame’s season started bad, got weird, and closes strong before the loss to USC. Call it the Marcus Freeman growing pain campaign. The team was able to figure it out rocked eventual ACC champion Clemson, and it got a nice bowl even though it lost to Marshall and Stanford along the way. After all the weird moments, getting to nine wins and closing out with a bowl would be terrific. There’s a problem, though …
The Irish are losing way too many important players. The pass rush took a major hit through the transfer portal and opt-outs, losing TE Michael Mayer to the NFL is big, and the quarterback situation is potentially a mess. On the flip side …
BUTLER WBB RETURNS TO ACTION WEDNESDAY AT XAVIER
INDIANAPOLIS – The Bulldogs ended the non-conference portion of their schedule before Christmas and will now shift their focus to Xavier for a 1 PM tip at the Cintas Center on Wednesday afternoon. Each team is 0-3 in BIG EAST action heading into the matchup.
– Wednesday is the 51st overall meeting between Butler and Xavier.
– Rachel McLimore led Butler with 13 points at #4 Indiana. She has led the team in scoring five times this season.
– Sydney Jaynes joined McLimore in double figures with 11 points at Assembly Hall. Jaynes has scored 11+ points in five-straight games.
– Caroline Strande pulled down a team-high six rebounds at IU. She has led the Bulldogs in rebounding three times this season.
– Five different ‘Dawgs hit a 3-pointer against the Hoosiers.
– Shay Frederick came up with five steals at IU in 17 minutes of playing time. She entered the game with just four total.
– Butler and Indiana each scored 34 points over the final 36 minutes of playing time at Assembly Hall.
– Jessica Carrothers and Jordan Meulemans did not play at Indiana due to injury. There is no timetable for their return.
– Jessica Carrothers ranks sixth in the BIG EAST in field goal percentage (55.4%) and ninth in steals (1.7).
– Butler ranks fourth in the BIG EAST in field goal percentage (44.3%) and second in 3-point field goal percentage (37.4).
– BU ranks fourth in the conference in 3-point field goal percentage defense (27.6).
– Anna Mortag ranks fifth in the BIG EAST in 3-point field goal percentage (42.9%).
– BU averages 6.9 made 3-pointers per game, the fifth-best average in the BIG EAST.
– Tenley Dowell has hit at least one 3-pointer in four-straight games.
– The Bulldogs are aiming for their first road win and conference win of the season on Wednesday.
– Butler hasn’t faced a team with a losing record since Nov. 25 (Sacred Heart).
The Musketeers won their first five games of the season, but head into the thick of conference play with a 7-5 record that includes an 0-3 mark in the BIG EAST. League losses came against Creighton, Seton Hall and Georgetown. Xavier hosted the Bluejays, but were forced to travel for their other two BIG EAST matchups. Wednesday will be the fourth-straight home game for the Musketeers. They took down Cincinnati 48-35 in the Skyline Chili Crosstown Shootout, but followed that with two-straight setbacks to Eastern Michigan and Memphis. Xavier averaged 64.3 points per game and is limiting the opposition to 59.7 points. Junior guard Mackayla Scarlett leads the team with a 12.9 scoring average. She dropped 18 points against Memphis on Dec. 21. Scarlett opened the season with seven-straight games in double figures. She is also the top 3-point shooter on the roster. On the inside, senior forward Courtney Prenger averages 8.3 points and 5.8 rebounds per game. She serves as the team leader in blocked shots with 18.
All-Time Series vs. Xavier
Butler leads the all-time series against Xavier 29-21. The first-ever meeting went down as a 71-64 Bulldog victory during the 1982-83 season. Since joining the BIG EAST at the start of the 2013-14 season, BU has gone 12-7 against their Midwest foe.
Last Meeting vs. Xavier
Xavier shot 52.4 percent from the field and had five players in double figures the last time they played Butler. The Musketeers scored 23 points off 20 turnovers to help them find the win column. Butler was led by Sydney Jaynes and Tenley Dowell. Jaynes had a team-high 12 points and Dowell hit three 3-pointers for 11.
Xavier’s Last Game
The Musketeers dropped their final non-conference game of the season to Memphis on Wednesday by the final score of 66-63. Neither team led by more than six points as the two evenly matched teams went into the final stages of the game with Xavier on top 61-60. The Tigers stepped up and closed the game on a 6-2 run to exit the Cintas Center with their eighth win of the year. Kaysia Woods hit three 3-pointers to help net 13 points and Courtney Prenger added 10 points and four rebounds.
‘Dawgs Playing D
Butler held #4 Indiana to just 30 second half points in their last game. Solid defensive play has been the key to success for the Bulldogs in 2022. They are 5-1 on the year when their opponent shoots less than 40 percent from the field, but 0-6 when the opposition shoots over 40 percent. Xavier enters the game shooting 39.3 percent from the field.
First to 64
Butler and Xavier each average 64 points per game. The Musketeers have reached 87 and 84 points this season, but have failed to score 70+ since Nov. 27. The Bulldogs scored a season-high 84 points in their season opener vs. Chicago State but have not scored 70+ points since Dec. 4 at DePaul. So far this season, Butler is 5-0 when allowing less than 60 points, but 0-7 when allowing 60 or more.
The numbers for Butler and Xavier are similar indicating that a close game is likely. The Bulldogs would have the advantage if the game comes down to free throws. BU shoots 68.8 percent from the charity stripe and Xavier ranks last in the BIG EAST shooting 61.9 percent from the line.
Butler ranks 20th in the NCAA in 3-point field goal percentage (37.4). The ‘Dawgs have made five 3-pointers in each of their last two games. At Indiana, five different players all hit one shot from behind the arc. Rachel McLimore is the top 3-point shooter on the roster with 16 makes on 41 attempts (39.0%). Anna Mortag is second on the team with 12 made 3-pointers and Shay Frederick is third with 11. 11 of the 14 Bulldogs to see playing time this season have hit at least one shot from distance. Butler also ranks 57th in the NCAA in field goal percentage (4th in BIG EAST). Five Bulldogs are shooting over 50 percent from the field this season.
Focused on Free Throws
Rachel McLimore has made 11 of her 12 free throw attempts in BIG EAST contests this year. She ranks seventh in the league with a 91.7 percentage. McLimore also leads BU in minutes played during conference matchups (31.3).
Rachel McLimore and Sydney Jaynes combined for 24 of Butler’s 50 points as the Bulldogs (5-7, 0-3) closed out their non-conference slate with a setback at No.4 Indiana on Wednesday afternoon. It was an early back-and-forth at Assembly Hall before IU outscored Butler 20-7 in a decisive second quarter. Teams were even 30-30 in the second half as Butler shot 40 percent over the final 20 minutes, draining four three-pointers. McLimore tallied 13 points and Jaynes added 11.
The Bulldogs are one of three BIG EAST teams to make 13 3-pointers in a single game this season. Butler did it first with 13 makes from behind the arc against Binghamton on Nov. 26. UConn hit 13 triples vs. Providence on Dec. 2 and Villanova recently hit 13 vs. Saint Joseph’s on Dec. 10.
Rachel McLimore hit two 3-pointers vs. Southern Indiana to move her career total to 100! She only needs one more steals to reach 100.
Butler’s final game of 2022 will be at Seton Hall on New Year’s Eve! The Bulldogs will face the Pirates at 4 PM on the BIG EAST Digital Network streamed by FloSports.com
JARRARD NAMED #HLMBB FRESHMAN OF THE WEEK
INDIANAPOLIS – IUPUI freshman guard Armon Jarrard has been named the #HLMBB Freshman of the Week for his efforts during the Jaguars’ two contests at the Indiana Classic in Fort Wayne. Jarrard entered the week averaging just 3.0 points per game, but averaged 10.5 points and 2.0 rebounds per game while shooting 54.5 percent from the field, 3-of-4 from three-point range and 6-of-7 from the free throw line off the bench.
He opened the week with a career-high 16 points (4-7 FG, 2-3 3’s, 6-7 FT) with an assist, a blocked shot and a steal against Southern Indiana on Monday (Dec. 19). He followed up with five points, three boards and an assist in the win over Texas A&M Commerce on Tuesday (Dec. 20).
He becomes the second different IUPUI rookie to have earned the award this season as classmate Vincent Brady II is a two-time recipient of the honor.
For the season, Jarrard averages 4.3 points per game and is second on the squad in steals with 15, having made five starts in his 12 appearances.
KENT NAMED #HLWBB PLAYER OF THE WEEK
INDIANAPOLIS – Rachel Kent has been named the #HLWBB Player of the Week for her efforts in the Jaguars’ 85-72 win over Northern Illinois. This marks Kent’s first weekly award.
The senior from Des Plaines, Illinois scored a career-high tying 24 points, helping the Jags set a school-record 17 threes with a personal career-high seven made threes. She shot 70 percent (7-for-10) from behind the arc and 58.3 percent (7-for-12) from the floor while leading the team in rebounds with six and dishing out six assists.
The forward has been a key component for the Jaguars this season, starting all 11 games, averaging 11.1 points, 5.5 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 1.2 steals per game this season.
GAME 13 PREVIEW: IRISH VS. DOLPHINS ON TUESDAY
SOUTH BEND, Ind. – The Notre Dame men’s basketball team (7-5, 0-2 ACC) will have one last non-conference opportunity to get back on track when the Irish host the Jacksonville Dolphins (7-3) on Tuesday, Dec. 27. The Irish are coming off a heartbreaking one-point loss at Florida State on Dec. 21 and will resume ACC play at home on Dec. 30 vs. Miami. The final tune-up is a solid Jacksonville squad with tip scheduled for 7 p.m. ET inside Purcell – the game will air on the ACC Network.
The Irish and Dolphins have only met once before, with Notre Dame taking it 100-74 in December of 2018.
The Irish currently rank in the top-5 in three different statistical categories. Their highest ranking – 1st in fouls per game – only committing 11.9. That has been a Coach Brey staple. In the last 12 years, Notre Dame has only failed to finish among the top 10 in least amount of personal fouls committed just once. They have also led the country in least amount of personal fouls five times.
Next, they rank 2nd in the country in turnovers per game, only surrendering 9.2.
Furthermore, if the Irish can get to the free-throw line in late-game situations, look out. They rank 4th in free-throw percentage, converting 80.4 percent from the stripe – leads the ACC as well. Goodwin, Ryan and Laszewski are all shooting above .850 from the stripe.
THREAT FROM THREE
Notre Dame has recorded double-digit three-pointers in 4 of the last 6 games, and the two that they didn’t – Boston U and Florida State – they connected on nine. Over that 6-game stretch, they’ve knocked down 61 three-pointers aka 10.2 per game.
That 10.2 average leads all Power-Five schools since Nov. 30. When looking at all D-I schools, it ranks 18th.
Overall on the season, they are averaging 8.9 three’s per game, which would crack the program’s all-time top-10. The program record is 9.7 set by the 19-20 squad.
Now, the big reason for that – the squad’s big three who are all shooting above 42 percent. The trio all rank in the top-7 in the ACC in three-point field goal percentage.
Goodwin – .462 – ranks 4th in the ACC
Ryan – .456 – ranks 5th in the ACC
Laszewski – .429 – ranks 7th in the ACC
*Hammond – .400
LET CORMAC COOK
A phrase you may have heard a lot lately – Let Cormac Cook. He’s 21-of-34 (.618) from three over the past 6 games. His 21 three’s are the 2nd most by a Power-Five Conference player since Nov. 30 (top spot is FSU’s Darin Green Jr’s 22). Overall in D-I, his 21 three’s are the 15th most since Nov. 30.
More stats since Nov. 30:
• His 61.8 percent clip from three since Nov. 30 ranks 15th in the country overall
• Since Nov. 30 vs Michigan State, Ryan is averaging a team best 16.2 ppg, which includes two 20+ point performances.
NATE’S GREAT START
Nate Laszewski is averaging a career best 15.1 ppg and a career high 7.8 rpg.
With four years under his belt, he entered the year with nine career double-doubles to his name and six 20-point performances. Already this season he has three double-doubles and four 20+ point efforts.
Laszewski is doing it all for the Irish, simply look at his ACC individual rankings – 13th in scoring (15.1), 7th in rebounds (7.8), 6th in FG% (.550), 7th in 3PT FG% (.429), 3rd in FT% (.870) and 3rd in defensive rebounds (6.9).
Nate is the only player in the ACC to rank in the top-15 in scoring, rebounds, FG% and 3PT FG%
To further illustrate how unique of a player Laszewski is, take this — he’s the only player in the country averaging at least 15 points and 7.5 rebounds, while shooting above .500 overall, .400 from three and .850 from the free-throw line.
Lastly, Cormac Ryan isn’t the only Irish having a strong December. Laszewski has totaled 52 points over the last 3 games, averaging 17.3 ppg. Also been prolific from three, converting 9-of-18 in those 3 games.
Last season, the Irish went 14-1 inside Purcell Pavilion, and this year they are off to a 7-2 start which includes a ranked win over No. 20 Michigan State. Thus, they are 21-3 at home over their last 24 home games.
All the talk about the grad school vets but there’s a freshmen named JJ Starling looking to make a name for himself in the collegiate landscape.
Starling, who was ranked 18th by ESPN and was the highest ranked ND recruit since at least 2007 (when ESPN recruiting database began), is off to a solid start – averaging 13.3 ppg. In fact, if the season ended today, JJ’s 13.3 ppg would rank 8th all-time at ND for a freshmen.
He ranks 3rd in scoring amongst ACC freshmen. The top two spots belong to Duke’s Kyle Filipowski and Syracuse’s Judah Mintz. All-in-all, they’re the only 3 ACC freshmen in double figures.
JJ TAKING OFF
In what was an achilles heel at the beginning of the season is now a strong point as of late – that’s JJ’s three-point shooting. He’s 7-of-14 from beyond the arc over the last 4 games.
Did what he could in Florida State matchup on Dec. 21 – recording his 2nd 20-point performance of the season. Starling went on a 6-0 run to end the game to pull the Irish within one and give them an opportunity to win the game with 6 seconds left.
With that said, Starling has tied his career best with 4 straight games in double figures, averaging 15.3 ppg in that span.
ANOTHER DYNAMIC FRESHMAN
Ven-Allen Lubin is another freshman you need to know. He’s averaging a modest 6.5 points and 5.1 rebounds off the bench, but the latter ranks 2nd on the team.
He’s one of the most athletically gifted individuals on the team and most efficient shooter as well. Case in point – he’s shooting 66.7 percent from two. He’s also knocking down a team best 59.3 percent from the floor overall. In fact, that number would rank 5th all-time for a ND freshman if the season ended today. Top spot is Harold Swanagan’s .645 in 98-99.
He’s also a big presence defensively, leading the team in blocks with 0.9 per game. A shining example of such – Lubin was subbed in for his defense with under a minute left in the Boston U game and it paid off, earning a pivotal block and rebound, then converting a free throw on the other end. He finished with nine points, 5 rebounds and a career best 3 blocks.
Lastly, he boasts one double-double to his name as well, earning it on Nov. 25 vs St. Bonaventure with 10 points and 13 rebounds.
LAKES NAMED OVC NEWCOMER OF THE WEEK
EVANSVILLE, Ind. – University of Southern Indiana Men’s Basketball graduate forward Trevor Lakes (Lebanon, Indiana) was named the Ohio Valley Conference Newcomer of the Week for his efforts in the Screaming Eagles’ split at the Indiana Classic at Purdue University Ft. Wayne last week. The weekly honor is the second for Lakes this season.
The graduate forward started his week with a collegiate career-best 30-point performance in the 87-74 win over Indiana University/Purdue University Indianapolis. He tied a USI and Ohio Valley Conference record with 10 three-point field goals in the victory.
Lakes finished the week with a double-double, posting 11 points and grabbing 10 rebounds, in USI’s loss to Ft. Wayne, 83-59. The double-double was Lakes’ second of the season with all 10 rebounds coming on the defensive end.
For the week, Lakes averaged 20.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, and 1.0 assists per game. He also shot 43.3 percent from the field (13-30) and 54.2 percent from long range (13-24).
USI (7-6) starts OVC action this weekend when it hosts Southeast Missouri State University Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at Screaming Eagles Arena and when it goes on the road to visit Eastern Illinois University Saturday for a 3:30 p.m. tip in Charleston, Illinois.
The Eagles, who have won four of their last five games, have four players averaging in double-digits and led by senior guard Jelani Simmons (Columbus, Ohio), who is posting 14.3 points per game. Lakes follows Simmons in the scoring column with 12.9 points per outing.
Sophomore guard Isaiah Swope (Newburgh, Indiana) and senior forward Jacob Polakovich (Grand Rapids, Michigan) round out the double-digit scorers with 10.9 points and 10.4 points per game, respectively. Polakovich also leads the team on the glass with 9.8 rebounds per contest.
SEMO comes to visit Screaming Eagles Arena amid a seven-game losing streak and a 5-8 record after non-conference action. Sophomore guard Phillip Russell leads the Redhawks with 16.2 points per game, while senior guard Israel Barnes and senior guard Chris Harris round out the double-digit scorers with 14.8 points and 12.4 points per contest, respectively.
USI trails the all-time series with SEMO, 3-2. SEMO has taken games one, four, and five of the series, while USI took the middle two. The Redhawks have won the last two, including the meeting in the NCAA II Central Regional in 1990 at Cape Girardeau, Missouri. The Eagles are 1-1 in games with SEMO played in Evansville.
EIU finished non-conference action with a 4-9 mark and back-to-back wins, including a road victory at the University of Iowa. The Panthers are led by junior guard Kinyon Hodges, who is posting 13.3 points per game, and graduate guard Yaakema Rose, who is averaging 10.5 points per outing.
USI is 2-1 all-time against EIU and won the last meeting, an exhibition game 95-92, in 2017. The Eagles have won the last two regular season contests, defeating the Panthers on the road, 72-70, in 1980-81, and at home, 81-78, in the 1982-83 season. EIU took the first ever meeting, 79-67 in the 1978 NCAA II Great Lakes Regional.
SMALL COLLEGE ATHLETIC SITES:
INDIANA WESLEYAN ATHLETICS: https://iwuwildcats.com/
EARLHAM ATHLETICS: https://goearlham.com/
WABASH ATHLETICS: https://sports.wabash.edu/
FRANKLIN ATHLETICS: https://franklingrizzlies.com/
ROSE-HULMAN ATHLETICS: https://athletics.rose-hulman.edu/
ANDERSON ATHLETICS: https://athletics.anderson.edu/landing/index
TRINE ATHLETICS: https://trinethunder.com/landing/index
BETHEL ATHLETICS: https://bupilots.com/
DEPAUW ATHLETICS: https://depauwtigers.com/
HANOVER ATHLETICS: https://athletics.hanover.edu/
MANCHESTER ATHLETICS: https://muspartans.com/
HUNTINGTON ATHLETICS: https://www.huathletics.com/
OAKLAND CITY ATHLETICS: https://gomightyoaks.com/index.aspx
ST. FRANCIS ATHLETICS: https://www.saintfranciscougars.com/landing/index
IU KOKOMO ATHLETICS: https://iukcougars.com/
IU EAST ATHLETICS: https://www.iueredwolves.com/
IU SOUTH BEND ATHLETICS: https://iusbtitans.com/
PURDUE NORTHWEST ATHLETICS: https://pnwathletics.com/
INDIANA TECH ATHLETICS: https://indianatechwarriors.com/index.aspx
GRACE COLLEGE ATHLETICS: https://gclancers.com/
ST. MARY OF THE WOODS ATHLETICS: https://smwcathletics.com/
GOSHEN COLLEGE ATHLETICS: https://goleafs.net/
HOLY CROSS ATHLETICS: https://www.hcsaints.com/index.php
TAYLOR ATHLETICS: https://www.taylortrojans.com/
VINCENNES ATHLETICS: https://govutrailblazers.com/landing/index
|AMERICAN FOOTBALL CONFERENCE|
|W||L||T||PCT||GB||PF||PA||HOME||ROAD||VS. CONF||VS. DIV||STREAK|
|XY-BUFFALO BILLS||12||3||0||.800||0.0||420||263||6 – 1 – 0||6 – 2 – 0||8 – 2 – 0||3 – 2 – 0||6 W|
|XY-KANSAS CITY CHIEFS||12||3||0||.800||0.0||438||332||6 – 1 – 0||6 – 2 – 0||7 – 3 – 0||4 – 0 – 0||3 W|
|X-CINCINNATI BENGALS||11||4||0||.733||0.0||391||306||5 – 1 – 0||6 – 3 – 0||7 – 3 – 0||2 – 3 – 0||7 W|
|JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS||7||8||0||.467||0.0||353||331||4 – 3 – 0||3 – 5 – 0||6 – 4 – 0||2 – 2 – 0||3 W|
|X-BALTIMORE RAVENS||10||5||0||.667||0.0||321||272||5 – 2 – 0||5 – 3 – 0||6 – 4 – 0||3 – 1 – 0||1 W|
|X-LOS ANGELES CHARGERS||9||6||0||.600||0.0||332||343||4 – 3 – 0||5 – 3 – 0||7 – 4 – 0||2 – 3 – 0||3 W|
|MIAMI DOLPHINS||8||7||0||.533||0.0||365||370||5 – 2 – 0||3 – 5 – 0||6 – 4 – 0||2 – 2 – 0||4 L|
|NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS||7||8||0||.467||2.0||318||291||3 – 4 – 0||4 – 4 – 0||5 – 5 – 0||2 – 2 – 0||2 L|
|NEW YORK JETS||7||8||0||.467||2.0||284||282||3 – 5 – 0||4 – 3 – 0||5 – 6 – 0||2 – 3 – 0||4 L|
|TENNESSEE TITANS||7||8||0||.467||2.0||269||312||3 – 4 – 0||4 – 4 – 0||5 – 6 – 0||3 – 2 – 0||5 L|
|PITTSBURGH STEELERS||7||8||0||.467||2.0||264||319||3 – 4 – 0||4 – 4 – 0||3 – 7 – 0||1 – 3 – 0||2 W|
|LAS VEGAS RAIDERS||6||9||0||.400||3.0||348||350||4 – 2 – 0||2 – 7 – 0||5 – 6 – 0||3 – 2 – 0||1 L|
|CLEVELAND BROWNS||6||9||0||.400||3.0||323||343||4 – 4 – 0||2 – 5 – 0||4 – 7 – 0||3 – 2 – 0||1 L|
|INDIANAPOLIS COLTS||4||10||1||.300||4.5||248||357||2 – 5 – 0||2 – 5 – 1||4 – 6 – 1||1 – 3 – 1||5 L|
|DENVER BRONCOS||4||11||0||.267||5.0||232||304||3 – 4 – 0||1 – 7 – 0||2 – 8 – 0||0 – 4 – 0||1 L|
|HOUSTON TEXANS||2||12||1||.167||6.5||254||358||0 – 6 – 1||2 – 6 – 0||2 – 7 – 1||2 – 1 – 1||1 W|
|NATIONAL FOOTBALL CONFERENCE|
|W||L||T||PCT||GB||PF||PA||HOME||ROAD||VS. CONF||VS. DIV||STREAK|
|X-PHILADELPHIA EAGLES||13||2||0||.867||0.0||445||308||6 – 1 – 0||7 – 1 – 0||8 – 2 – 0||3 – 2 – 0||1 L|
|XY-MINNESOTA VIKINGS||12||3||0||.800||0.0||378||373||8 – 1 – 0||4 – 2 – 0||7 – 3 – 0||3 – 1 – 0||2 W|
|XY-SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS||11||4||0||.733||0.0||375||230||7 – 1 – 0||4 – 3 – 0||9 – 2 – 0||5 – 0 – 0||8 W|
|TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS||7||8||0||.467||0.0||266||304||4 – 4 – 0||3 – 4 – 0||7 – 3 – 0||3 – 1 – 0||1 W|
|X-DALLAS COWBOYS||11||4||0||.733||0.0||434||303||8 – 1 – 0||3 – 3 – 0||8 – 3 – 0||4 – 1 – 0||1 W|
|NEW YORK GIANTS||8||6||1||.567||0.0||311||339||4 – 3 – 1||4 – 3 – 0||4 – 6 – 1||1 – 3 – 1||1 L|
|WASHINGTON COMMANDERS||7||7||1||.500||0.0||285||313||3 – 4 – 0||4 – 3 – 1||4 – 6 – 1||1 – 3 – 1||2 L|
|SEATTLE SEAHAWKS||7||8||0||.467||1.5||365||379||3 – 4 – 0||4 – 4 – 0||5 – 6 – 0||3 – 2 – 0||3 L|
|DETROIT LIONS||7||8||0||.467||1.5||392||401||4 – 4 – 0||3 – 4 – 0||5 – 5 – 0||3 – 1 – 0||1 L|
|GREEN BAY PACKERS||7||8||0||.467||1.5||313||334||4 – 3 – 0||3 – 5 – 0||5 – 5 – 0||2 – 2 – 0||3 W|
|CAROLINA PANTHERS||6||9||0||.400||2.5||313||337||5 – 4 – 0||1 – 5 – 0||5 – 5 – 0||3 – 1 – 0||1 W|
|NEW ORLEANS SAINTS||6||9||0||.400||2.5||303||325||4 – 4 – 0||2 – 5 – 0||4 – 6 – 0||2 – 3 – 0||2 W|
|LOS ANGELES RAMS||5||10||0||.333||3.5||281||334||4 – 5 – 0||1 – 5 – 0||3 – 8 – 0||1 – 4 – 0||1 W|
|ATLANTA FALCONS||5||10||0||.333||3.5||315||350||4 – 3 – 0||1 – 7 – 0||4 – 6 – 0||1 – 4 – 0||4 L|
|ARIZONA CARDINALS||4||11||0||.267||4.5||308||391||1 – 8 – 0||3 – 3 – 0||3 – 7 – 0||1 – 4 – 0||5 L|
|CHICAGO BEARS||3||12||0||.200||5.5||303||393||2 – 6 – 0||1 – 6 – 0||1 – 9 – 0||0 – 4 – 0||8 L|
|W||L||PCT||CONF GB||HOME||ROAD||DIV||CONF||LAST 10||STREAK|
|1 BOSTON||24||10||.706||—||13-5||11-5||4-0||15-8||5-5||2 W|
|2 MILWAUKEE||22||11||.667||1.5||14-3||8-8||4-2||11-7||5-5||3 L|
|3 BROOKLYN||22||12||.647||2.0||12-5||10-7||5-2||17-6||9-1||9 W|
|4 CLEVELAND||22||13||.629||2.5||16-4||6-9||5-2||15-7||6-4||2 L|
|5 PHILADELPHIA||20||12||.625||3.0||14-5||6-7||4-3||14-8||8-2||8 W|
|6 NEW YORK||18||16||.529||6.0||8-10||10-6||1-4||12-9||7-3||3 L|
|7 ATLANTA||17||16||.515||6.5||11-6||6-10||4-3||13-12||4-6||1 W|
|8 INDIANA||17||17||.500||7.0||9-7||8-10||1-2||12-8||4-6||1 L|
|9 MIAMI||17||17||.500||7.0||10-8||6-9||5-1||8-11||6-4||1 W|
|10 TORONTO||15||18||.455||8.5||10-6||5-12||2-7||11-13||3-7||2 W|
|11 CHICAGO||14||19||.424||9.5||7-8||7-11||2-1||12-9||5-5||1 L|
|12 WASHINGTON||13||21||.382||11.0||8-7||5-14||3-3||7-13||2-8||1 W|
|13 ORLANDO||13||21||.382||11.0||9-9||4-12||2-4||7-16||8-2||2 W|
|14 CHARLOTTE||9||25||.265||15.0||4-11||5-14||3-6||4-17||2-8||1 L|
|15 DETROIT||8||28||.222||17.0||4-13||4-15||0-5||3-17||1-9||6 L|
|W||L||PCT||CONF GB||HOME||ROAD||DIV||CONF||LAST 10||STREAK|
|1 DENVER||21||11||.656||—||12-3||9-8||7-2||17-7||7-3||4 W|
|2 NEW ORLEANS||21||12||.636||0.5||14-4||7-8||6-1||14-8||6-4||3 W|
|3 MEMPHIS||20||12||.625||1.0||13-2||7-10||3-2||9-9||7-3||1 L|
|4 LA CLIPPERS||20||15||.571||2.5||11-7||9-8||3-4||11-11||6-4||1 W|
|5 PHOENIX||19||15||.559||3.0||14-5||5-10||7-0||16-10||3-7||3 L|
|6 SACRAMENTO||17||14||.548||3.5||9-6||8-8||4-4||6-6||5-5||1 L|
|7 DALLAS||18||16||.529||4.0||13-5||5-11||2-2||13-6||5-5||3 W|
|8 PORTLAND||18||16||.529||4.0||8-6||10-10||4-5||13-11||5-5||1 W|
|9 UTAH||19||17||.528||4.0||12-5||7-12||3-4||15-10||5-5||1 L|
|10 GOLDEN STATE||16||18||.471||6.0||13-2||3-16||4-3||10-8||3-7||1 W|
|11 MINNESOTA||16||18||.471||6.0||9-8||7-10||4-4||9-12||4-6||3 L|
|12 OKLAHOMA CITY||14||19||.424||7.5||9-8||5-11||3-6||8-12||4-6||1 L|
|13 LA LAKERS||13||20||.394||8.5||8-8||5-12||0-7||7-13||3-7||4 L|
|14 SAN ANTONIO||11||22||.333||10.5||6-11||5-10||2-4||5-18||5-5||1 W|
|15 HOUSTON||10||23||.303||11.5||6-10||4-13||1-5||5-17||4-6||1 W|
|1 BOSTON BRUINS||33||27||4||2||56||25||130||74||18-0-2||9-4-0||7-1-2|
|2 CAROLINA HURRICANES||34||22||6||6||50||20||106||90||10-3-1||12-3-5||9-0-1|
|3 TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS||34||21||7||6||48||21||111||82||13-2-3||8-5-3||7-2-1|
|4 NEW JERSEY DEVILS||34||22||10||2||46||22||115||87||10-8-1||12-2-1||3-6-1|
|5 PITTSBURGH PENGUINS||33||19||9||5||43||18||114||95||10-3-3||9-6-2||8-1-1|
|6 TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING||32||20||11||1||41||20||115||97||12-4-1||8-7-0||7-3-0|
|7 NEW YORK RANGERS||35||19||11||5||43||18||116||96||8-6-4||11-5-1||8-2-0|
|8 WASHINGTON CAPITALS||36||19||13||4||42||19||111||102||11-5-1||8-8-3||9-1-0|
|9 NEW YORK ISLANDERS||35||19||14||2||40||19||112||98||10-6-0||9-8-2||4-4-2|
|10 DETROIT RED WINGS||32||14||11||7||35||13||98||105||8-6-3||6-5-4||3-5-2|
|11 BUFFALO SABRES||32||16||14||2||34||15||127||109||7-8-2||9-6-0||7-2-1|
|12 FLORIDA PANTHERS||35||15||16||4||34||14||114||120||8-5-3||7-11-1||3-7-0|
|13 MONTREAL CANADIENS||34||15||16||3||33||11||95||118||7-9-0||8-7-3||3-5-2|
|14 OTTAWA SENATORS||33||14||16||3||31||14||100||106||8-8-1||6-8-2||5-3-2|
|15 PHILADELPHIA FLYERS||35||11||17||7||29||11||90||119||7-9-1||4-8-6||3-5-2|
|16 COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS||33||10||21||2||22||10||89||135||8-11-1||2-10-1||2-8-0|
|1 VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS||36||24||11||1||49||21||122||100||10-9-0||14-2-1||6-4-0|
|2 DALLAS STARS||35||20||9||6||46||20||125||99||10-4-3||10-5-3||6-3-1|
|3 LOS ANGELES KINGS||37||19||12||6||44||16||121||128||10-5-2||9-7-4||6-2-2|
|4 WINNIPEG JETS||34||21||12||1||43||21||111||88||12-5-0||9-7-1||5-5-0|
|5 SEATTLE KRAKEN||32||18||10||4||40||18||113||104||9-6-2||9-4-2||4-5-1|
|6 COLORADO AVALANCHE||32||19||11||2||40||16||96||84||9-5-2||10-6-0||6-3-1|
|7 MINNESOTA WILD||33||19||12||2||40||16||106||95||11-6-1||8-6-1||7-3-0|
|8 CALGARY FLAMES||35||16||12||7||39||15||110||109||10-6-2||6-6-5||4-2-4|
|9 EDMONTON OILERS||35||18||15||2||38||18||126||122||9-9-1||9-6-1||4-4-2|
|10 ST. LOUIS BLUES||34||16||16||2||34||14||105||124||6-7-1||10-9-1||5-3-2|
|11 NASHVILLE PREDATORS||32||14||13||5||33||12||82||98||8-5-3||6-8-2||3-4-3|
|12 VANCOUVER CANUCKS||33||15||15||3||33||13||114||129||6-9-1||9-6-2||6-4-0|
|13 SAN JOSE SHARKS||35||11||18||6||28||10||108||129||4-10-5||7-8-1||3-5-2|
|14 ARIZONA COYOTES||32||11||16||5||27||10||87||117||5-3-2||6-13-3||4-5-1|
|15 ANAHEIM DUCKS||35||9||22||4||22||7||83||146||5-8-1||4-14-3||3-6-1|
|16 CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS||32||8||20||4||20||8||75||122||5-12-2||3-8-2||2-8-0|
December 27, 1892 – Salisbury, North Carolina – Snow blanketed the front yard of Livingstone College. Hundreds of people from around the area were making the trek to the venue to witness what would become the first game that two black colleges would meet on the gridiron as Biddle University (now known as Johnson C. Smith University) traveled from Charlotte. The website Ourstate.com lets the story unfold, telling how the crowd had traveled from near and far on foot, by horse, and by wagon to watch a football game and to see history unfold. The teams played two 45 minute halves and wore hand made uniforms produced by women studying in Livingstone’s industrial department, and players from both sides raised the funds for a regulation-size football. In the game a very controversial play occurred when a Livingstone player picked up a fumble and raced for the tying score. That fumble recovery was ruled out of bounds, and so Biddle hung on to defeat Livingstone 5-0 in this monumental college football game.
December 27, 1942 – Shibe Park, Philadelphia -According to the NWW2M.com the way that NFL All-Star games worked for a five year period was that the NFL Champs would face a team of hand picked League All-stars a couple weeks after the Title Game. Back in the December 13 edition of this series we talked about the Washington Redskins winning the Big game in an upset of the Chicago Bears 14-6 at Griffith Park in D.C. . Tradition would hold the 5th and final NFL All Star Game in this format would play out as Washington faced a team of All-Stars coached by the Bears staff led by Hunk Anderson. The NFL stars included Bullet Bill Dudley of Pittsburgh at halfback, Bears quarterback Sid Luckman with Eagles signal caller Tommy Thompson, and the line play of Bruiser Kinard and Bulldog Turner. The makeshift NFL All-Stars squad overcame the champs that day as the Washington Redskins fell 14-17.
December 27, 1953 – Briggs Stadium, Detroit – The 1953 National Football League Championship had the previous year’s Champion Detroit Lions at home to face the contending Cleveland Browns. According to a Pro Football Hall of Fame story this one had some game ending drama to it. Legendary Lions QB Bobby Layne had been hearing from his substitute Tight End Jim Doran all game that he could get downfield past the Browns defender that had been assigned to him all day. Starting End Leon Hart had left the game with a knee injury earlier so Doran was pulled from the defensive side of the ball to fill in. The Lions were down by 6 with a few seconds more than two minutes remaining in the contest. The wiley old signal caller finally decided to play his wild card in this poker game on the gridiron he and the Cleveland defenders had been dabbling in that afternoon. “Can you still beat that feller?” Layne asked bluntly to Doran in the huddle per the article. You just know that Jimmy D. eyeballed him back and gave him words of conformation! The DB on Doran that day was Warren Lahr and the two opponents had been going at it all day. Doran was now licking his chops as he finally had his quarterback’s focus on the advantage he felt he could get over Lahr. Then it happened a crucial 3rd and long and Layne took the snap and completed an 18 yard strike to Doran to get past the lead stick. A few plays later it was Layne to Jim Doran again for the touchdown! After the extra point was nailed, the Detroit Lions held on and beat the Cleveland Browns, 17-16 to retain the title!
December 27, 1959 – Memorial Stadium, Baltimore – National Football League Championship game had the same billing as the watershed 1958 Title contest as the New York Giants faced the Baltimore Colts. There were more than a few changes though from the previous year that the Golden Rankings website describes. The Giants had lost Vince Lombardi as their offensive strategist when he left to coach the Packers. The League had record setting attendance during the 1959 season directly attributed to the overtime 1958 Championship between these two teams. A tragedy struck the NFL when on October 11, 1959 Commissioner Bert Bell suffered a heart attack while at the Steelers versus Eagles game and passed away. The former treasurer Austin Gunsel stepped up to lead the League but there were some very big shoes to fill. The American Football Database fills in some details about the game itself stating that after 3 field goals by Giants kicker Pat Summerall, New York was up 9-7 going into the fourth quarter. In the final stanza though Baltimore came to life as Johnny Unitas ran in a touchdown and threw for another while the Colts defense scored on a pick six to bury the Giants. The Baltimore Colts came from behind to register a convincing 31-16 victory over the New York Giants.
December 27, 1960 – Running Back Tommy Mason from the University of Tulane was the first pick by the Minnesota Vikings in the 1961 NFL Draft. The Football Database website reports that also picked in this draft were future Hall of Famers Mike Ditka, Jimmy Johnson, Herb Adderley, Bob Lilly, Fran Tarkenton, Billy Shaw and Deacon Jones. Not a bad class of college players turning professional at all.
December 27, 1962 – 28th Heisman Trophy Award went to Quarterback Terry Baker from Oregon State. The Senior signal caller according to Heisman.com was the first player from Oregon State to win the coveted prize. Baker was a dual threat on offense as he tossed for 1723 yards and 15 scores in 1962 while he also churned out 9 TDs and 538 yards on the ground.
December 27, 1964 – Cleveland Municipal Stadium – The 1964 National Football League Championship game had the Baltimore Colts pitted against the Cleveland Browns. Hall of Famer Jim Brown rushed for 114 yards in the game for Cleveland but the scoring came on three Frank Ryan to Gary Collins pass plates and a few kicks by Lou Groza as the Cleveland Browns blanked the Baltimore Colts, 27-0 per the Pro-Football-Reference.com website. Onthisday.com states that the victory was the last championship win by a major-league pro sports team from Cleveland until in 2016 when the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers captured the crown.
December 27, 1971 – The first Fiesta Bowl is played as #8 Arizona State University’s Sun Devils defeated the Florida State Seminoles, 45-38 per the OnthisDay.com website.
December 27, 1974 – 40th Heisman Trophy Award went to Archie Griffin, the running back of the Ohio State Buckeyes. The Heisman’s official website states that even though Griffin was considered smallish for a Division I back at 5’-9” and a mere 180 pounds he was a consistent and truly explosive runner. The Junior ran for 1620 yards and 12 touchdowns to lead the Buckeyes to an impressive 10-1 record that ranked them 3rd in the nation. If you remember back to our December 6 Football History Headlines post we learned that as a Senior Archie Griffin became the only player in history to win back to back Heismans. For his regular season college career Griffin pounded out 5177 yards to rank fifth in the annals of collegiate rushers but his 31 games of 100 yards or more is at the top of the list in NCAA history.
December 27, 1987 – Arrowhead Stadium – Steve Largent sets all-time NFL record for career catches when he catches his 752nd pass. Seahawks.com shares with us that the previous record of 750 by Charlie Joiner was broken when Largent caught 6 balls for 95 yards and a TD in a 41-20 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs.
December 27, 1991 – OnthisDay.com reports that the Brown family, owners of the Cincinnati Bengals, hired Dave Shula, the son of legendary Coach Don Shula, as their new head coach. The younger Shula then became the youngest NFL coach in history at the ripe age of 32.
December 27, 2003 – Week 17 (Dec 27 & 28) of the 2003 season is played and an NFL record paid attendance of 1,106,108 for the 16 games played for one weekend.
HALL OF FAME BIRTHDAY FOR DECEMBER 27
December 27, 1947 – Seminole, Texas – The tackle from the University of Texas Bob McKay was born. The NFF says that the Longhorns with the help of McKay won the 1969 National Championship as Bob became a consensus All-American in the process with his great blocking. During his college career Texas averaged 363 yards rushing per game which was tops in the FBS in that same span of seasons. The National Football Foundation selected Bob McKay to enter into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2017. After graduation Bob McKay was picked by the Cleveland Browns at the 1970 NFL Draft, 21st overall and spent nine seasons as a pro with the Browns and New England Patriots.
December 27, 1959 – Birmingham, Alabama – Andre Tippett the great linebacker from Ellsworth Junior College and Iowa celebrated his birth. Andre was a beast and terrorzed members of the offensive bacjkfield on a regular basis earninghin to become a consensus All-America selection in 1981. The National Football Foundation voters inducted Andre Tippett into their College football Hall of Fame in 2021.The New England Patriots used a second round pick to land Tippett in the 1982 NFL Draft and what an outstanding choice that was. According to his bio on the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s website, Andre in 1985 led the NFL with 16-½ sacks, became the AFC Defensive Player of the Year and played in the Super Bowl. For his career Tippett registered 100 quarterback sacks in 150 games played. The Pro Football Hall of Fame enshrined Andre Tippett in 2008.
December 27, 1979 – Fresno, California – Carson Palmer the quarterback from Southern Cal was born. The National Football Foundation voters inducted Carson Palmer into their College football Hall of Fame in 2021.
1874 A Havanan team plays Matanzas in Cuba’s first documented baseball game. The contest, played at Palmar de Junco, ends with Havana leading, 51-9, with the game called after seven innings due to darkness.
1941 Levi Walker, the third person to play Chief Noc-A-Homa, a role he will perform from 1969 through 1985, is born. Dressed in Native American costume, the Georgia native will come out of his tepee, located in the bleachers, setting off smoke signals and doing a celebration dance whenever a Braves player homers at Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium.
1943 Former Yankee infielder Roy White is born in Los Angeles. The two-time All-Star will play 15 years in the majors, compiling a lifetime .271 batting average for the Bronx Bombers.
1967 Johnny Murphy becomes the Mets’ third general manager in franchise history when he replaces Bing Devine. During his tenure, the team benefits from a talented farm system, especially its young pitching prospects, including Tom Seaver, Jerry Koosman, Nolan Ryan, and Gary Gentry, who will play a major role in the club’s World Championship in 1969.
1984 Ed Whitson, 14-8 with the NL champion Padres, signs a five-year $4.4 million ill-fated contract with the Yankees. The free-agent deal becomes a nightmare when the right-hander lasts only a season and a half, compiling a 15-10 record and an ERA of 5.38 in 44 games with the Bronx Bombers.
2001 After 21 years on WABC, the Yankees will broadcast its spring training, regular-season, and postseason games on all-news station WCBS-AM, which Infinity Broadcasting owns. The five-year deal with the Yankees’ YES Network, created earlier this year, is worth approximately $50 million.
2001 The Mets stay busy this offseason, acquiring first baseman Mo Vaughn for 13-year veteran right-hander Kevin Appier (11-10, 3.57) and cash. The 1995 American League MVP will join Roberto Alomar, Roger Cedeno, and Shawn Estes as the Shea Squad’s newest members.
2003 In his hometown of Loza, Puerto Rico, former major league All-Star outfielder Ivan Calderon is shot and killed at a bar reportedly known where several other murders have occurred in the past year. During his ten-year major league career, the 41-year-old played with the Mariners (1984-1986), White Sox (1986-1990), Expos (1991-1992), Red Sox (1993), and the White Sox (1993).
2004 After the Cubs decline Moises Alou’s (.293, 39, 106) option, the Giants ink the free-agent outfielder to a one-year contract reportedly worth $13.25 million, with an opportunity for a second year for the career .300 hitter. The signing marks the 38-year-old All-Star’s second time he will call his dad skipper, with Felipe managing him while he played with the Expos from 1992-96.
2007 Hoping he will continue to be a hot hitter at Kauffman Stadium (.415), the Royals sign free-agent Miguel Olivo (.237, 16, 60) to a one-year deal with a mutual option for the following season. The Marlins did not tender a contract to the 29-year-old backstop, the team’s starting catcher for the past two seasons, after acquiring catching prospect Mike Rabelo in the blockbuster trade with the Tigers during the Winter Meetings.
2008 Adding speed at the top of their order and a superior glove in centerfield, the Reds sign Willy Taveras (.251, 1, 26) to a two-year contract. The 27-year-old speedster, who led the major leagues with 68 stolen bases last season, became a free agent earlier in the month when the Rockies declined to offer him a contract after the oft-injured outfielder spent two seasons with the team.
2013 The Rangers come to terms on a seven-year, $130 million deal with free-agent Shin-Soo Choo, who will join the recently acquired power-hitting first baseman Prince Fielder to provide the club more offense. The 31-year-old outfielder, who compiled a .423 on-base percentage, hit .285 with 21 home runs and drove in 54 runs for the Reds last season.
2020 In a seven-player trade, the Cubs deal 34-year-old Yu Darvish and his personal catcher Victor Caratini to the Padres for right-handed starter Zach Davies and four minor league prospects: Reginald Preciado, Yeison Santana, Owen Caissie, and Ismael Mena. San Diego’s addition of Darvish, last season’s NL Cy Young runner-up, comes less than a day after the team obtains southpaw Blake Snell, another top of the rotation hurler from the Rays.
SPORTS IN NUMBERS
21 – 20 – 11 – 9 – 13 – 45 – 7 – 15 – 11 – 99 – 8 – 19 – 66 –
December 27, 1956 – Number 21, Bill Sharman of the Boston Celtics ends NBA free throw streak of 55 games
December 27, 1960 – 1961 NFL Draft: Number 20, Tommy Mason from University of Tulane first pick by Minnesota Vikings
December 27, 1962 – 28th Heisman Trophy Award was won by Oregon State Quarterback, Number 11, Terry Baker
December 27, 1966 – Ballon d’Or: Manchester United midfielder Number 9, Bobby Charlton won the award for best European football player; claims award by a single point ahead of Benfica striker Number 13, Eusébio
December 27, 1974 – 40th Heisman Trophy Award was won by Ohio State running back Number 45, Archie Griffin
December 27, 1977 – Ballon d’Or: Borussia Mönchengladbach’s Danish forward Number 9, Allan Simonsen was named Europe’s best football player ahead of Hamburg forward Number 7, Kevin Keegan and Nancy midfielder Number 15, Michel Platini
December 27, 1978 – Ballon d’Or: Hamburg’s English forward Number 7, Kevin Keegan won his 1st of 2 consecutive trophies as best football player in Europe; beats Barcelona striker Number 9, Hans Krankl and Anderlecht winger Number 11, Rob Rensenbrink
December 27, 1979 – Los Angeles left wing Number 11, Charlie Simmer scored in a Kings’ 3-0 shutout of the Quebec Nordiques to extend his modern day NHL goal-scoring streak to 13 straight games (ends next game)
December 27, 1981 – Edmonton Oilers Number 99, Wayne Gretzky becomes fastest NHLer to get 100 pts (38th game)
December 27, 1983 – Ballon d’Or: Juventus’ French midfielder Number 10, Michel Platini claims first of 3 trophies for Europe’s best football player ahead of Liverpool midfielder Number 7, Kenny Dalgleish and Vejle BK striker Number 9, Allan Simonsen
December 27, 1987 – Seattle Seahawks Number 80, Steve Largent sets all-time NFL record for career catches when he catches his 752nd pass
December 27, 1988 – Ballon d’Or: Milan 1-2-3; Dutch striker Number 9, Marco van Basten won his 1st of 3 best football player in Europe awards ahead of Number 10, Ruud Gullit and Number 8, Frank Rijkaard
December 27, 1999 – Number 19, Joe Sakic records his 1,000th career point, an assist against the St. Louis Blues
December 27, 2000 – Pittsburgh Penguins center and part-owner Number 66, Mario Lemieux scored a goal and 2 assists in his return to the NHL after more than 3 years out with injury problems and lingering cancer issues; Penguins beat Toronto Maple Leafs, 5-0
December 27, 2017 – Number 10, Raheem Sterling scored to give Manchester City 1-0 win over Newcastle United at St. James’ Park; EPL record 18th consecutive win; streak ends with 0-0 draw at Crystal Palace 31/12
|COLLEGE BASKETBALL||TIME ET||TV|
|JACKSONVILLE AT NOTRE DAME||7:00PM||ACCN|
|SAINT ELIZABETH AT NJIT||7:00PM||ESPN+|
|GEORGIA SOUTHWESTERN AT JACKSONVILLE STATE||7:00PM||ESPN+|
|SETON HALL AT MARQUETTE||8:00PM||FS1|
|NORTHWESTERN STATE AT TEXAS A&M||8:00PM||SECN|
|A&M-COMMERCE AT TEXAS||8:00PM||LHN|
|SOUTH CAROLINA STATE AT TEXAS TECH||8:00PM||ESPN+|
|COLLEGE FOOTBALL||TIME ET||TV|
|CAMELLIA BOWL: GEORGIA SOUTHERN VS. BUFFALO||12:00PM||ESPN|
|SERVPRO FIRST RESPONDER BOWL: MEMPHIS VS. UTAH STATE||3:15PM||ESPN|
|BIRMINGHAM BOWL: COASTAL CAROLINA VS. EAST CAROLINA||6:45PM||ESPN|
|GUARANTEED RATE BOWL: WISCONSIN VS. OKLAHOMA STATE||10:15PM||ESPN|
|NBA REGULAR SEASON GAMES||TIME ET||TV|
|LA LAKERS AT ORLANDO||7:00PM||SPORTSNET|
|PHILADELPHIA AT WASHINGTON||7:00PM||NBCS-WSH|
|LA CLIPPERS AT TORONTO||7:30PM||NBATV|
|HOUSTON AT BOSTON||7:30PM||ATTSN-SW|
|ATLANTA AT INDIANA||7:30PM||BALLY SPORTS|
|PHOENIX AT MEMPHIS||8:00PM||BALLY SPORTS|
|SAN ANTONIO AT OKLAHOMA CITY||8:00PM||BALLY SPORTS|
|NEW YORK AT DALLAS||8:30PM||BALLY SPORTS|
|CHARLOTTE AT GOLDEN STATE||10:00PM||NBATV|
|DENVER AT SACRAMENTO||10:00PM||ALT|
|NHL REGULAR SEASON GAMES||TIME ET||TV|
|BOSTON AT OTTAWA||7:00PM||NESN|
|CHICAGO AT CAROLINA||7:00PM||NBCS-CHI|
|WASHINGTON AT NY RANGERS||7:00PM||NBCS-WSH|
|BUFFALO AT COLUMBUS||7:30PM||ESPN+|
|PITTSBURGH AT NY ISLANDERS||7:30PM||ATTSN-PIT|
|DALLAS AT NASHVILLE||8:00PM||BALLY SPORTS|
|MINNESOTA AT WINNIPEG||8:00PM||BALLY SPORTS|
|TORONTO AT ST. LOUIS||8:00PM||BALLY SPORTS|
|COLORADO AT ARIZONA||9:00PM||ALT|
|EDMONTON AT CALGARY||9:00PM||SPORTSNET|
|SAN JOSE AT VANCOUVER||10:00PM||NBCS-CA|
|VEGAS AT LOS ANGELES||10:30PM||BALLY SPORTS|
|SOCCER MATCHES||TIME ET||TV|
|ENGLAND CHAMPIONSHIP: READING VS SWANSEA CITY||12:15PM||ESPN+|
|ENGLISH PREMIER LEAGUE: CHELSEA VS AFC BOURNEMOUTH||12:30PM||USA|
|ENGLISH PREMIER LEAGUE: MANCHESTER UNITED VS NOTTINGHAM FOREST||3:00PM||USA|
|ENGLAND CHAMPIONSHIP: BURNLEY VS BIRMINGHAM CITY||3:00PM||ESPN+|
|COPA POR MEXICO: TIGRES UANL VS SANTOS LAGUNA||6:00PM||TUDN|
|COPA POR MEXICO: CRUZ AZUL VS AMÉRICA||8:00PM||TUDN|