INDIANA HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL REGIONAL MATCH-UPS

CLASS 6A

CARROLL (11-0) VS. LAFAYETTE JEFF (9-2)

WESTFIELD (7-3) AT HAMILTON SOUTHEASTERN (11-0)

CATHEDRAL (9-1) AT BROWNSBURG (10-1)

WARREN CENTRAL (6-5) AT CENTER GROVE (9-2)

CLASS 5A

MERRILLVILLE (9-2) AT VALPARAISO (8-3)

FORT WAYNE SNIDER (10-1) AT MISHAWAKA (10-1)

PLAINFIELD (6-5) AT WHITELAND (10-1)

BLOOMINGTON SOUTH (9-1) AT CASTLE (7-4)

CLASS 4A

NORTHRIDGE (8-4) AT NEW PRAIRIE (11-1)

KOKOMO (11-1) AT COLUMBIA CITY (11-1)

NEW PALESTINE (12-0) AT RONCALLI (11-1)

EAST CENTRAL (10-2) AT EVANSVILLE MEMORIAL (9-3)

CLASS 3A

WEST LAFAYETTE (12-0) AT KNOX (9-3)

YORKTOWN (9-3) AT BISHOP CHATARD (8-4)

MONROVIA (5-7) AT OWEN VALLEY (12-0)

LAWRENCEBURG (11-1) VS. SOUTHRIDGE (11-1)

CLASS 2A

LAFAYETTE CENTRAL CATHOLIC (9-3) AT ANDREAN (8-3)

BLUFFTON (8-4) AT FORT WAYNE BISHOP LUERS (7-5)

LAPEL (7-5) AT LINTON-STOCKTON (12-0)

EVANSVILLE MATER DEI (9-3) AT TRITON CENTRAL (10-2)

CLASS A

NORTH JUDSON (11-1) AT PARK TUDOR (9-3)

CARROLL (11-1) AT ADAMS CENTRAL (12-0)

NORTH DECATUR (12-0) AT SHERIDAN (11-1)

PROVIDENCE (9-2) AT LUTHERAN (12-0)

COLLEGE FOOTBALL POLLS

AP TOP 25

1. GEORGIA (62), 9-0 LAST WEEK: 1

2. OHIO STATE (1), 9-0 LAST WEEK: 2

3. MICHIGAN 7-0 LAST WEEK: 4

4. TCU 9-0 LAST WEEK: 7

5. TENNESSEE 8-1 LAST WEEK: 2

6. OREGON 8-1 LAST WEEK: 8

7. LSU 7-2 LAST WEEK: 15

8. SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA 8-1 LAST WEEK: 9

9. UCLA 8-1 LAST WEEK: 10

10. ALABAMA, 7-2 LAST WEEK: 6

11. MISSISSIPPI 8-1 LAST WEEK: 11

12. CLEMSON 8-1 LAST WEEK: 5

13. UTAH 7-2 LAST WEEK: 12

14. PENN STATE 7-2 LAST WEEK: 16

15. NORTH CAROLINA 8-1 LAST WEEK 17

16. TULANE 8-1 LAST WEEK: 19

17. NC STATE 7-2 LAST WEEK: 21

18. TEXAS 6-3 LAST WEEK: NR

19. LIB 8-1 LAST WEEK: 23

20. NOTRE DAME 6-3 LAST WEEK: NR

21. ILLINOIS 7-2 LAST WEEK: 14

22. UCF 7-2 LAST WEEK: 25

23. KANSAS STATE 6-3 LAST WEEK: 13

24. WASHINGTON 7-2 LAST WEEK: NR

25. FLORIDA STATE 6-3 LAST WEEK: NR

OTHERS RECEIVING VOTES:

CINCINNATI 74, KENTUCKY 61, COASTAL CAROLINA 46, WAKE FOREST 34, OKLAHOMA STATE 21, BAYLOR 19, KANSAS 10, MISSISSIPPI STATE 8, SOUTH CAROLINA 6, TROY 5, UTSA 5, LOUISVILLE 3, OREGON STATE 3, SAN JOSE STATE 1

USA TODAY COACHES POLL

1. GEORGIA (61), 9-0 LAST WEEK: 1

2. OHIO STATE , 9-0 LAST WEEK: 2

3. MICHIGAN (2) 7-0 LAST WEEK: 4

4. TCU 9-0 LAST WEEK: 7

5. TENNESSEE 8-1 LAST WEEK: 3

6. OREGON 8-1 LAST WEEK: 8

7. SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA 8-1 LAST WEEK: 9

8. LSU 7-2 LAST WEEK: 17

9. MISSISSIPPI 8-1 LAST WEEK: 10

10. UCLA 8-1 LAST WEEK: 11

11. ALABAMA, 7-2 LAST WEEK: 6

12. CLEMSON 8-1 LAST WEEK: 5

13. UTAH 7-2 LAST WEEK: 12

14. NORTH CAROLINA 8-1 LAST WEEK 15

15. PENN STATE 7-2 LAST WEEK: 16

16. NC STATE 7-2 LAST WEEK: 20

17. TULANE 8-1 LAST WEEK: 21

18. TEXAS 6-3 LAST WEEK: NR

19. LIB 8-1 LAST WEEK: 23

20. ILLINOIS 7-2 LAST WEEK: 13

21. UCF 7-2 LAST WEEK: 25

22. KANSAS STATE 6-3 LAST WEEK: 22

23. WASHINGTON 7-2 LAST WEEK: NR

24. KENTUCKY 6-3 LAST WEEK: 24

25. NOTRE DAME 6-3 LAST WEEKD: NR

SCHOOLS DROPPED OUT

NO. 18 OKLAHOMA STATE; NO. 19 WAKE FOREST; NO. 22 SYRACUSE.

OTHERS RECEIVING VOTES

COASTAL CAROLINA 77; CINCINNATI 70; WAKE FOREST 53; OKLAHOMA STATE 53; BAYLOR 46; FLORIDA STATE 22; SYRACUSE 20; KANSAS 12; MISSISSIPPI STATE 11; TROY 10; LOUISVILLE 9; TEXAS-SAN ANTONIO 6; PITTSBURGH 4; MINNESOTA 4; SOUTH CAROLINA 3; OREGON STATE 3; MARYLAND 3; BOISE STATE 1.

WEEK 11 SCHEDULE FOR THE STATE OF INDIANA

BALL STATE AT TOLEDO, NOVEMBER 8 AT 8 P.M. (TV: ESPN)

BUTLER AT DRAKE, NOVEMBER 12 AT 2 P.M.

HANOVER AT FRANKLIN, NOVEMBER 12 AT 1:30 P.M.

INDIANA AT OHIO STATE, NOVEMBER 12 (TIME TBA) (TV: TBA)

INDIANA STATE AT WESTERN ILLINOIS, NOVEMBER 12 AT 2 P.M. (TV: ESPN+)

INDIANA WESLEYAN VS. MADONNA, NOVEMBER 12 AT NOON (TV: ESPN3)

MANCHESTER AT ANDERSON, NOVEMBER 12 AT 1:30 P.M.

MARIAN AT LAWRENCE TECH, NOVEMBER 12 AT 1 P.M.

NOTRE DAME VS. NAVY, NOVEMBER 12 AT NOON (TV: ABC)

PURDUE AT ILLINOIS, NOVEMBER 12 (TIME TBA) (TV: TBA)

ROSE-HULMAN AT MT. ST. JOSEPH, NOVEMBER 12 AT 1:30 P.M. (TV: INDIANA SRN)

ST. FRANCIS AT CONCORDIA, NOVEMBER 12 AT 1 P.M.

TAYLOR VS. SIENA HEIGHTS, NOVEMBER 12 AT 1 P.M.

TRINE AT KALAMAZOO, NOVEMBER 12 AT 1 P.M.

UINDY VS. TRUMAN, NOVEMBER 12 AT 2 P.M.

VALPARAISO AT MARIST, NOVEMBER 12 AT 11 A.M. (TV: ESPN+)

WABASH AT DEPAUW, NOVEMBER 12 AT 1:07 P.M. (TV: XFINITY CHANNEL 81 OR ISC TV)

WEEK 11

TUESDAY, NOV. 8

EASTERN MICHIGAN AT AKRON | 7 P.M. | CBSSN

OHIO AT MIAMI (OHIO) | 7:30 P.M. | ESPN2

BALL STATE AT TOLEDO | 8 P.M. | ESPN

WEDNESDAY, NOV. 9

NORTHERN ILLINOIS AT WESTERN MICHIGAN | 7 P.M. | ESPNU

BUFFALO AT CENTRAL MICHIGAN | 7 P.M. | ESPN2

KENT STATE AT BOWLING GREEN | 7 P.M. | CBSSN

THURSDAY, NOV. 10

TULSA AT MEMPHIS | 7:30 P.M. | ESPN

GEORGIA SOUTHERN AT LOUISIANA | 7:30 P.M. | ESPNU

FRIDAY, NOV. 11

EAST CAROLINA AT CINCINNATI | 8 P.M. | ESPN2

COLORADO AT USC | 9:30 P.M. | FS1

FRESNO STATE AT UNLV | 10:30 P.M. | CBSSN

SATURDAY, NOV. 12

MISSOURI AT TENNESSEE | 12 P.M.

LSU AT ARKANSAS | 12 P.M.

VANDERBILT AT KENTUCKY | 12 P.M. | SEC NETWORK

NOTRE DAME VS. NAVY (BALTIMORE, MARYLAND) | 12 P.M. | ABC

LIBERTY AT UCONN | 12 P.M. | CBSSN

VIRGINIA TECH AT DUKE | 12 P.M. | ESPN3

PITT AT VIRGINIA | 12 P.M. | ACC NETWORK

SMU AT SOUTH FLORIDA | 12 P.M. | ESPNU

UL MONROE AT GEORGIA STATE | 1 P.M. | ESPN+

JAMES MADISON AT OLD DOMINION | 1 P.M. | ESPN+

RICE AT WESTERN KENTUCKY | 2 P.M. | ESPN+

UMASS AT ARKANSAS STATE | 3 P.M. | ESPN3

TEMPLE AT HOUSTON | 3 P.M. | ESPN+

ALABAMA AT OLE MISS | 3:30 P.M. | CBS

LOUISVILLE AT CLEMSON | 3:30 P.M. | ESPN

IOWA STATE AT OKLAHOMA STATE | 3:30 P.M.

UCF AT TULANE | 3:30 P.M.

BOSTON COLLEGE AT NC STATE | 3:30 P.M. | ACC NETWORK

ARMY AT TROY | 3:30 P.M. | NFL NETWORK

MIAMI (FLA.) AT GEORGIA TECH | 3:30 P.M. | ESPN3

NEW MEXICO AT AIR FORCE | 3:30 P.M. | CBSSN

APPALACHIAN STATE AT MARSHALL | 3:30 P.M. | ESPN+

CHARLOTTE AT MIDDLE TENNESSEE | 3:30 P.M. | ESPN3

LOUISIANA TECH AT UTSA | 3:30 P.M. | ESPN+

NORTH TEXAS AT UAB | 3:30 P.M. | STADIUM

SOUTH CAROLINA AT FLORIDA | 4 P.M. | SEC NETWORK

LAMAR AT NEW MEXICO STATE | 4 P.M. | FLOFOOTBALL

TEXAS STATE AT SOUTH ALABAMA | 5 P.M. | ESPN+

GEORGIA AT MISSISSIPPI STATE | 7 P.M. | ESPN

KANSAS AT TEXAS TECH | 7 P.M. | BIG 12/ESPN+

WYOMING AT COLORADO STATE | 7 P.M. | CBSSN

FLORIDA ATLANTIC AT FIU | 7 P.M. | STADIUM

TCU AT TEXAS | 7:30 P.M. | ABC

NORTH CAROLINA AT WAKE FOREST | 7:30 P.M. | ESPN2

TEXAS A&M AT AUBURN | 7:30 P.M. | SEC NETWORK

SOUTHERN MISS AT COASTAL CAROLINA | 7:30 P.M. | ESPNU

FLORIDA STATE AT SYRACUSE | 8 P.M. | ACC NETWORK

BOISE STATE AT NEVADA | 10:30 P.M. | CBSSN

UTAH STATE AT HAWAI’I | 11 P.M. | SPECTRUM SPORTS PPV

INDIANA AT OHIO STATE

NEBRASKA AT MICHIGAN

WASHINGTON AT OREGON

ARIZONA AT UCLA

KANSAS STATE AT BAYLOR

STANFORD AT UTAH

MARYLAND AT PENN STATE

PURDUE AT ILLINOIS

CAL AT OREGON STATE

ARIZONA STATE AT WASHINGTON STATE

OKLAHOMA AT WEST VIRGINIA

WISCONSIN AT IOWA

NORTHWESTERN AT MINNESOTA

RUTGERS AT MICHIGAN STATE

SAN JOSE STATE AT SAN DIEGO STATE

NFL WEEK 9 SCOREBOARD

NEW ENGLAND 26 INDIANAPOLIS 3

LA CHARGERS 20 ATLANTA 17

MIAMI 35 CHICAGO 32

CINCINNATI 42 CAROLINA 21

DETROIT 15 GREEN BAY 9

JACKSONVILLE 27 LAS VEGAS 20

NY JETS 20 BUFFALO 17

MINNESOTA 20 WASHINGTON 17

SEATTLE 31 ARIZONA 21

TAMPA BAY 16 LA RAMS 13

KANSAS CITY 20 TENNESSEE 17 OT

BOX SCORES: http://hosted.stats.com/fb/scoreboard.asp

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 07, 2022

BALTIMORE RAVENS AT NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (MON) 7:15P (CT) 8:15P ESPN

NFL WEEK 10

THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 10, 2022

ATLANTA FALCONS AT CAROLINA PANTHERS (THU) 8:15P (ET) 8:15P PRIME VIDEO

SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 13, 2022

SEATTLE SEAHAWKS VS TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS (MUNICH) 3:30P (CET) 9:30A NFLN

MINNESOTA VIKINGS AT BUFFALO BILLS 1:00P (ET) 1:00P FOX

DETROIT LIONS AT CHICAGO BEARS 12:00P (CT) 1:00P FOX

JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS AT KANSAS CITY CHIEFS 12:00P (CT) 1:00P CBS

CLEVELAND BROWNS AT MIAMI DOLPHINS 1:00P (ET) 1:00P CBS

HOUSTON TEXANS AT NEW YORK GIANTS 1:00P (ET) 1:00P CBS

NEW ORLEANS SAINTS AT PITTSBURGH STEELERS 1:00P (ET) 1:00P FOX

DENVER BRONCOS AT TENNESSEE TITANS 12:00P (CT) 1:00P CBS

INDIANAPOLIS COLTS AT LAS VEGAS RAIDERS 1:05P (PT) 4:05P CBS

DALLAS COWBOYS AT GREEN BAY PACKERS 3:25P (CT) 4:25P FOX

ARIZONA CARDINALS AT LOS ANGELES RAMS 1:25P (PT) 4:25P FOX

LOS ANGELES CHARGERS AT SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS 5:20P (PT) 8:20P NBC*

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 14, 2022

WASHINGTON COMMANDERS AT PHILADELPHIA EAGLES (MON) 8:15P (ET) 8:15P ESPN

TOP 25 COLLEGE BASKETBALL SCHEDULE MONDAY

NO. 1 NORTH CAROLINA VS UNC WILMINGTON 9:00 ET ACC NETWORK

NO. 2 GONZAGA VS NORTH FLORIDA 9:00 ET

NO. 3 HOUSTON VS NORTHERN COLORADO 8:00 ET ESPN+

NO. 4 KENTUCKY VS HOWARD 6:30 ET SECN/WATCHESPN

NO. 5 KANSAS VS OMAHA 8:00 ET BIG12|ESPN+

NO. 5 BAYLOR VS MISSISSIPPI VALLEY STATE 12:00 PM BIG12|ESPN+

NO. 7 DUKE VS JACKSONVILLE 7:00 ET ACC NETWORK

NO. 8 UCLA VS SACRAMENTO STATE 11:30 ET

NO. 9 CREIGHTON VS ST. THOMAS – MINNESOTA 8:30 ET FOX SPORTS 1

NO. 10 ARKANSAS VS NORTH DAKOTA STATE 8:00 ET ESPN+/SECN+

NO. 11 TENNESSEE VS TENNESSEE TECH 7:00 ET ESPN+/SECN+

NO. 12 TEXAS VS UTEP 7:00 ET LONGHORNS NETWORK

NO. 13 INDIANA VS MOREHEAD STATE 9:00 ET

NO. 14 TCU VS ARKANSAS-PINE BLUFF 8:00 ET BIG12|ESPN+

NO. 15 AUBURN VS GEORGE MASON 8:00 ET ESPN+/SECN+

NO. 16 VILLANOVA VS LA SALLE 6:30 ET FOX SPORTS 1

NO. 17 ARIZONA VS NICHOLLS 9:30 ET

NO. 18 VIRGINIA VS NORTH CAROLINA CENTRAL 9:00 ET ACC NETWORK EXTRA

NO. 19 SDSU VS CAL STATE FULLERTON 10:00 ET

NO. 20 ALABAMA VS LONGWOOD 8:30 ET ESPN+/SECN+

NO. 21 OREGON VS FLORIDA A&M 10:00 ET

NO. 22 MICHIGAN VS PURDUE FORT WAYNE 6:30 ET BIG TEN NETWORK

NO. 23 ILLINOIS VS EASTERN ILLINOIS 9:00 ET ESPNU

NO. 24 DAYTON VS LINDENWOOD 7:00 ET ESPN+

NO. 25 TEXAS TECH VS NORTHWESTERN STATE 9:00 ET BIG12|ESPN+

COMPLETE TV SCHEDULE, NOVEMBER 7-13: http://www.espn.com/mens-college-basketball/conferences/schedule/_/id/52/ncaa-basketball-conference

NBA SCOREBOARD

CLEVELAND 114 LA LAKERS 100

TORONTO 113 CHICAGO 104

MEMPHIS 103 WASHINGTON 97

UTAH 110 LA CLIPPERS 102

BOX SCORES: http://hosted.stats.com/nba/scoreboard.asp

NHL SCOREBOARD

DETROIT 3 NY RANGERS 2

TORONTO 3 CAROLINA 1

FLORIDA 5 ANAHEIM 3

BOX SCORES: http://hosted.stats.com/nhl/scoreboard.asp

TOP NATIONAL HEADLINES

DICKER KICKS WINNER TO LIFT CHARGERS OVER FALCONS 20-17

ATLANTA (AP) The Los Angeles Chargers keep having to find new placekickers, and they keep giving the new guys game balls.

Cameron Dicker kicked a game-ending field goal three days after being signed as a free agent, hitting a 37-yarder that lifted the Chargers over the Atlanta Falcons 20-17 on Sunday.

Dicker also made a 31-yard field goal with 5:27 left, tying the game at 17. The rookie from Texas was signed to the practice squad Thursday and activated Sunday in place of injured Dustin Hopkins. This was only Dicker’s second NFL game – he also made a late, go-ahead kick for the Philadelphia Eagles as an injury replacement in Week 5.

“We’re going to set the NFL record for game balls to a kicker,” Chargers coach Brandon Staley said. “That’s three.”

Taylor Bertolet played the hero’s role with four field goals filling in for Hopkins in a 30-28 win at Cleveland on Oct. 9. Bertolet was placed on injured reserve with a quad injury Wednesday. Dicker won a job with an audition a day later.

Quarterback Justin Herbert said Dicker won the players’ confidence by showing “how special a player he was. He was perfect in practice.”

When pressed on how he could have such confidence in a kicker who had been with the team for just a few days, Herbert said, “He showed that confidence and it rubbed off on us.”

Teammates lifted Dicker on their shoulders following the game-winner.

The Chargers (5-3) survived a bizarre fumble by Austin Ekeler with 34 seconds remaining. Ekeler’s fumble was recovered by Falcons defensive lineman Ta’Quon Graham, who also fumbled while returning the ball. Chargers left guard Matt Fieler recovered Graham’s frumble at the Atlanta 43.

“My teammates tell me it’s OK, but I’m probably the hardest on myself, so I should’ve held onto the ball,” Graham said. “Probably should’ve fell on it. Probably should’ve gotten out of bounds. All of the above, so now I have to move on from here.”

Herbert’s 22-yard pass to Joshua Palmer set up Dicker’s kick as time expired. Staley said he would have been confident in Dicker anywhere inside the 35-yard line.

The loss prevented the Falcons (4-5), who began the day in first place in the NFC South, from moving above .500 for the first time since 2017.

Dicker’s 31-yarder came after an apparent go-ahead 37-yard touchdown reception by Ekeler was called back following a review. Officials on the field ruled Ekeler was not down when tackled by Isaiah Oliver but instead said he rolled over Oliver without touching the ground. The review showed Ekeler’s left elbow touched the turf.

Atlanta’s Cordarrelle Patterson ran over Chargers linebacker Drue Tranquill on a 3-yard touchdown run that gave Atlanta a 17-14 lead in the third quarter. Patterson had a 1-yard scoring run on the Falcons’ opening drive.

With the Chargers leading 14-10, Atlanta was driving for a possible go-ahead touchdown on its first possession of the third quarter when Marcus Mariota completed a pass to rookie Drake London. Linebacker Khalil Mack took the ball from London at the Los Angeles 7 and returned the fumble 43 yards.

Three plays later, Falcons safety Richie Grant intercepted a deflected pass intended for Palmer.

With Keenan Allen (hamstring) and Mike Williams (on IR with an ankle injury) missing the game, Palmer had eight catches for 106 yards.

RUN, RUN, RUN

Patterson ran for 44 yards and two touchdowns after missing four games following knee surgery. Rookie Tyler Allgeier set a career high with 99 yards as the Falcons ran for 201 yards.

“He’s just an explosive guy,” said Allgeier of Patterson. “… It was good to have him back.”

The Falcons had four players, including Mariota, run for at least 250 yards over the first four games, setting an NFL record. The depth at running back allowed the Falcons to avoid overworking Patterson in his first game off IR.

Allgeier had a 44-yard run on the opening drive for Atlanta’s longest run of the season.

COMEBACK KIDS

Atlanta led 10-0 in the first quarter, when the Chargers were held without a first down. It marked the fourth consecutive game Los Angeles trailed by at least 10 points. The Chargers are 3-1 in those games, also beating Cleveland and Denver and losing to Seattle.

INJURIES

Chargers: DT Austin Johnson was carted off with a knee injury at the end of the third quarter. … LT Trey Pipkins III left the game in the fourth quarter with a knee injury.

Falcons: TE Feleipe Franks was ruled out with a calf injury at the start of the second half. … RG Chris Lindstrom was accompanied to the locker room with a knee injury in the third quarter. Colby Gossett replaced Lindstrom.

UP NEXT

Chargers: Play at San Francisco next Sunday in the first meeting between the teams since 2018, when the Chargers won 29-27 for their fifth straight win in the series.

Falcons: Face Carolina for the second time in three week when they visit the Panthers on Sunday. Atlanta took a 37-34 overtime home win over Carolina on Oct. 30.

TUA, DOLPHINS OUTLAST BEARS ON FIELDS’ RECORD RUSHING DAY

CHICAGO (AP) Tua Tagovailoa threw for three touchdowns, Tyreek Hill had 143 yards receiving and the Miami Dolphins overcame a record-setting rushing effort by Justin Fields to beat the Chicago Bears 35-32 on Sunday.

In a game where neither team did much to stop the other, the Dolphins (6-3) had no trouble moving the ball against a gutted defense and made enough plays to come away with their third straight win.

Fields ran for 178 yards, the most by an NFL quarterback in a regular-season game. He had a 61-yard touchdown run and threw for three scores. He also became the first player since at least 1950 with at least 150 yards rushing and three TD passes in a game.

His performance ensured the Bears (3-6) had a chance late. They got the ball on their 28 after Miami punted with just under three minutes remaining. But on fourth-and-10 at the 42, Fields threw an incomplete pass to Equanimeous St. Brown, sealing Chicago’s fifth loss in six games.

Tagovailoa, the NFL’s top-rated passer, had all the time he needed to throw after the Bears traded pass rusher Robert Quinn and star linebacker Roquan Smith in the past two weeks.

He completed 21 of 30 passes for 302 yards and posted a 135.7 rating.

Hill, the NFL’s leading receiver, caught seven passes, including a 3-yard touchdown in the second quarter.

Jaylen Waddle, fourth in the league in yards receiving coming in, added 85 yards and a touchdown.

Jeff Wilson Jr. had a TD catch in his first game since a trade-deadline deal from San Francisco.

Chicago, tops in the NFL in rushing, had 252 yards on the ground with Fields leading the way. The Bears joined the 1976 Steelers as the only teams in the Super Bowl era to run for at least 225 yards in four straight games.

Fields completed 17 of 28 passes for 123 yards, with two touchdowns to Cole Kmet and one to Darnell Mooney.

The Dolphins needed just four plays to go 75 yards on the opening drive of the second half, with Tagovailoa finding Waddle in the end zone for an 18-yard TD that extended their lead to 28-17.

Fields then scrambled 61 yards to the end zone, the longest run of his career. Trevon Wesco caught the 2-point conversion, pulling Chicago within three.

But the Dolphins answered, with Tagovailoa hitting Wilson for a 10-yard score that bumped the lead to 35-25.

Fields made it a three-point game early in the fourth with a 4-yard touchdown pass to Kmet. The Dolphins – aided Eddie Jackson’s pass interference on a deep ball to Waddle – drove to the Chicago 14, only to come away empty-handed when Tagovailoa underthrew Durham Smythe on a short pass.

INJURIES

Bears: CB Kindle Vildor (ankle) was hurt in the first quarter trying to guard Hill on a throw to the end zone that resulted in a pass-interference penalty that set up a touchdown.

UP NEXT

Dolphins: Host Cleveland next Sunday.

Bears: Host Detroit next Sunday.

MIXON SCORES 5 TDS, BENGALS DOMINATE PANTHERS 42-21

CINCINNATI (AP) A homemade sign hanging high in Paycor Stadium advised fans to ” Stay Calm and Let Joe Cook.”

The message surely was a nod to quarterback Joe Burrow, who usually stirs the pot for the Cincinnati Bengals. But it was another Joe who did most of the cooking against the Carolina Panthers.

Joe Mixon turned in his best effort of the season, rushing for 153 yards and scoring a franchise-record five touchdowns as the Bengals built a 35-0 halftime lead and cruised to a 42-21 rout of the Panthers on Sunday.

Mixon, who came into the game with three TDs all year, scored four times in the first half alone, the first three on short rushes and the fourth on a 12-yard pass from Burrow, who finished 22 for 28 for 206 yards before taking a seat in favor of backup Brandon Allen late in the third quarter.

The Bengals (5-4) bounced back from a horrendous Monday night loss at AFC North rival Cleveland to jump on Carolina (2-7) early and dominate on defense.

“To come out here today and have a complete game and pass protection when my number was called, and then deliver for my teammates, Burrow and the receivers, and be able to hit the right holes and do all the things to have a complete game, bro, I mean you can’t ask for much better,” Mixon said.

Cincinnati allowed P.J. Walker just 9 passing yards and intercepted him twice in the first half, chasing the former XFL quarterback to the bench in favor of Baker Mayfield to start the second.

Meanwhile, Mixon, who came in with zero 100-yard games this season, had 113 rushing yards by halftime. An overhauled offensive line that has been criticized for failing to break open the running game pushed around the Panthers’ defense.

“Great players want the ball,” Cincinnati coach Zac Taylor said of Mixon, who had seen his role reduced this season. “He’s a captain. He’s handled this thing really well. A lot of these guys know that sometimes their number isn’t called as a much and then there’s a game that’s going to smack them right in the face like this one.”

Mixon also caught four passes for 58 yards. He had gained only 27 yards on eight carries in the 32-13 loss to the Browns.

Mixon became the first NFL player with 150-plus yards and four or more touchdowns from scrimmage in the first half of a game since Shaun Alexander did it for the Seahawks in Week 4 of the 2002 season.

Burrow was 5 for 5 for 69 yards on the Bengals’ opening drive, the big one a 35-yard catch-and-run by Mixon to the Carolina 18. Three plays later, Mixon bulled in for a 2-yard touchdown.

Mixon’s 29-yard breakaway was the big play on the Bengals’ next scoring drive, which ended with a 1-yard scoring plunge by Burrow.

After Carolina’s third consecutive three-and-out, Burrow put together a nine-play, 69-yard drive that concluded with Mixon’s second rushing touchdown. After linebacker Germaine Pratt picked off Walker, it took Cincinnati five plays to eat up 42 yards and push the lead to 28-0.

An interception by Jessie Bates gave the Bengals another short field. Burrow finished the drive with his pass to Mixon, who added a 14-yard rushing touchdown in the third quarter before he was rested.

“A complete game for us, the first complete game of the year,” Burrow said.

Mayfield threw two second-half touchdown passes, and the Panthers concluded the scoring with 1:29 left.

“We couldn’t get anything going offensively and we couldn’t get off the field defensively,” said Steve Wilks, who was named Carolina’s interim coach when Matt Rhule was fired last month. “That’s on me.”

MORE MIXON

Mixon, a sixth-year veteran, topped his previous best scoring day by two TDs. He had two rushing touchdowns and caught a scoring pass on Oct. 4, 2020, against Jacksonville.

MORE CHANGES AT QB?

Walker got his fourth straight start for the Panthers over Mayfield but fell flat. The Panthers’ other QB, Sam Darnold, is healthy and ready to return from injured reserve. He has not played this year due to high ankle sprain but is likely to activated this week.

INJURIES

Panthers: DE Brian Burns left in the first quarter with a neck injury. … DT Derrick Brown was declared out in the third quarter with an illness.

Bengals: RB Chris Evans was declared out in the first quarter with a knee injury. … S Dax Hill suffered a right shoulder injury and was declared out in the third quarter.

UP NEXT

Panthers: Host NFC South rival Atlanta on Thursday night.

Bengals: After a week off, play at Pittsburgh. Cincinnati is 0-3 against AFC North opponents, including a Week 1 loss to the Steelers.

RODGERS THROWS 3 INTS, LIONS HOLD ON TO BEAT PACKERS 15-9

DETROIT (AP) Aaron Rodgers faked a handoff, rolled right and threw off-balance left, woefully short of his target.

Rodgers’ poor pass intended for left tackle David Bakhtiari on a fourth down was picked off by rookie Aidan Hutchinson. It was one of several plays the four-time NFL MVP wished he had back.

Rodgers matched a career high with three interceptions and threw an incomplete pass on fourth down from the Detroit 17 in the final minute, letting the Lions hold on for a 15-9 win over the Green Bay Packers on Sunday in a matchup of slumping teams.

When Rodgers was asked why he still believes this team can turn it around, he looked down at a lectern and had a long pause before answering.

“I’ve been counted out many times in my life as have many of my teammates,” He said. “I hope we just dig deep and find a way. We will truly be underdogs for many games moving forward. Hopefully we can embrace that.”

The Packers (3-6) have lost five straight for the first time since 2008, when Rodgers was a first-year starter.

“I would be concerned if I saw guys not competing out there,” coach Matt LaFleur said.

Rodgers thought about retiring in the offseason after winning a second straight NFL MVP award, but he chose to keep playing and insisted he doesn’t regret it.

“When I decided to come back, it was all in,” he said.

The Lions (2-6) ended a five-game losing streak, giving them a desperately needed win after defensive backs coach Aubrey Pleasant was fired and standout tight end T.J. Hockenson was traded.

“I’m exhausted,” said coach Dan Campbell, who won for the fifth time in 25 games in Detroit. “I want to go home, put my feet up and drink a beer.”

Detroit tried to seal the victory late in the fourth when Campbell went for it on fourth-and-3 from the Green Bay 43. Jared Goff’s pass was incomplete.

Rodgers failed to take advantage. He did convert a fourth-and-2 with a lob to Samori Toure, who fumbled out of bounds at the Detroit 17.

Rodgers threw four straight incomplete passes to end a lousy game overall. He was 23 of 42 for 291 yards with a TD and had three interceptions for the fifth time in his career.

On the field and the sideline, Rodgers looked and sounded upset with his teammates.

“It’s disappointing and frustrating, but yeah, I think that we all probably could do a little bit better job of controlling that frustration,” LeFleur said.

Goff was 14 of 26 for 137 yards with touchdown passes to Shane Zylstra and James Mitchell, a pair of tight ends that took advantage of an increased role after Detroit dealt Hockenson to Minnesota.

Zylstra and his brother, Brandon, who plays wide receiver, were elevated from the practice squad to join the active roster Sunday.

Rodgers threw interceptions in the end zone on his first two possessions. Kerby Joseph picked off the first one on a deflected pass and Hutchinson intercepted the next one.

“He told me he gave me a gift,” Hutchinson said.

Campbell made a call on Green Bay’s next possession that panned out, winning a challenge that overturned a Green Bay catch on fourth down.

Detroit took advantage, breaking a scoreless tie with Goff’s 1-yard touchown pass to Zylstra early in the second quarter. Jamaal Williams ran for a 2-point conversion after a running-into-the-kicker penalty.

Goff threw an interception early in the third quarter and Rodgers gave it back two snaps later, getting picked off at the Lions 3 by Joseph again.

Rodgers responded with a 20-yard touchdown pass to Allen Lazard, but his 2-point conversion pass to him was broken up by Jeff Okudah, allowing the Lions to lead 8-6.

Goff gave Detroit a nine-point lead with his second touchdown pass, a 3-yard throw to rookie tight end James Mitchell.

Green Bay stalled at the Lions 7 on the ensuing drive and had to settle for Mason Crosby’s 25-yard field goal that cut its deficit to six midway through the fourth quarter.

INJURIES

Packers: The banged-up team took more hits: WR Romeo Doubs (ankle), Jones (ankle), CB Eric Stokes (knee, ankle), DE Rashan Gary (knee) WR Christian Watson (concussion) and LB Krys Barnes (concssuion) were injured during the game. Starting LB De’Vondre Campbell (knee) was inactive.

Lions: Joseph was briefly evaluated on the field after he and CB Jeff Okudah collided with a helmet-to-helmet hit early in the fourth quarter. RB Craig Reynolds (ribs) was hurt during the game and starting WR Josh Reynolds (back) was inactive.

UP NEXT

Packers: Host Dallas on Sunday, and Tennessee four days later.

Lions: Play at Chicago on Sunday.

JAGUARS RALLY FROM 17-0 DEFICIT TO BEAT RAIDERS 27-20

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) Jacksonville’s Tyson Campbell believes he can cover anyone in the league. His confidence had to be wavering at least a little at halftime against Davante Adams.

Adams had nine catches for 146 yards and two touchdowns through two quarters Sunday, looking unstoppable while Campbell mostly shadowed him all over the field.

“When you’re going against great receivers, they’re going to make their plays,” Campbell said. “But you got to throw your punches, too.”

Campbell delivered all the blows in the second half as the Jaguars rallied from a 17-point deficit to beat Adams and the Las Vegas Raiders 27-20. The victory ended a five-game skid for the Jaguars (3-6).

“We were the hungrier team in the second half, and that got us the win,” Campbell said.

Travis Etienne ran for 109 yards and two touchdowns. Trevor Lawrence played one of the best games of his career, throwing for 235 yards and a score. And Jacksonville finally won a close game.

It was the second-biggest comeback in franchise history for the Jaguars, who climbed out of a 21-point hole to beat the New York Giants in 2014.

No one saw this one coming.

The Raiders (2-6), who were shut out last week at New Orleans and spent the week regrouping in Bradenton, Florida, dominated early. They led 17-0 after 20 minutes, scored on four of their first five possessions and were up 20-7 just before halftime.

Adams was the key, getting open often from several different spots. But Campbell eventually stiffened against the five-time Pro Bowler, who had one reception for no yards after the break.

“We certainly had chances in the second half to complete balls to him and anybody else,” Raiders coach Josh McDaniels said. “It wasn’t like we didn’t have opportunities there. They didn’t double him to the point where we couldn’t throw the ball to him.”

Jacksonville’s Riley Patterson hit the right upright with 3:03 remaining, giving the Raiders a chance late. But Derek Carr threw high over the middle to Hunter Renfrow on fourth down. Patterson made a 48-yarder with a minute left, and the Raiders failed to mount much of a challenge with their final possession.

Las Vegas’ final five drives ended with three punts, a turnover on downs and a fumble.

“We’ve got to learn how to play full four quarters,” said McDaniels, whose team has now lost three games in which it led by at least 17 points.

The Raiders were up 20-0 at home to Arizona in Week 2 and ended up losing 29-23 in overtime and led 17-0 at Kansas City in Week 5 before falling 30-29.

“You just got to continue doing whatever it was that put you in a position,” Adams said. “I feel like we’ve gotten away from it too many times.”

The victory was huge for Jacksonville, which had been 0-6 in one-score games before Sunday. Coach Doug Pederson’s team was tied or held a lead in five of those six losses.

“You don’t want to put too much emphasis on wins and losses, but this is a step in the right direction,” Pederson said. “We’ve been really close. It’s great to see our team finish.”

Etienne finished with his third consecutive 100-yard game. Lawrence completed 25 of 31 passes. He also scrambled for 53 yards and was charged with a fumble. Christian Kirk caught eight passes for 76 yards and a score.

Carr completed 22 of 37 passes for 266 yards, with both TD passes to Adams, who finished with 10 catches for 146 yards. Adams was targeted eight times in the second half and caught one.

“If I want to be the best in this league, I’ve got to step up and make plays,” Campbell said. “I took pride in that. I feel like the team was counting on me. I was all for it.”

AGNEW RETURNS

Jaguars kick returner Jamal Agnew made a difference in his first game since missing two with a knee injury. He had a season-long 52-yard kickoff return to start the second half, setting up Lawrence’s 7-yard touchdown pass to Kirk that seized the momentum.

KEY INJURIES

Raiders LB Divine Deablo injured his right forearm on the team’s second defensive play. He was carted to the locker room and quickly ruled out. … Fellow Raiders LB Denzel Perryman left the field in the third quarter to get his ribs taped but he only missed a few plays. … Jaguars TE Evan Engram missed part of the third-quarter series with a back injury but returned to start the final 15 minutes. … Jaguars S Rayshawn Jenkins left in the fourth to be evaluated for a concussion and did not return.

UP NEXT

Raiders: Host Indianapolis next Sunday.

Jaguars: Play next Sunday at Kansas City, where Jacksonville last won in 2007.

WILSON, JETS’ DEFENSE STUN ALLEN, BILLS IN 20-17 VICTORY

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) The sky was falling for the New York Jets against the Buffalo Bills.

They were losing a close game to their AFC East rivals in the second half – and an overhead video camera malfunctioned, disrupting a promising drive and appearing to be a poorly timed omen.

Then, the Jets pulled off a picture-perfect comeback.

“We’re too young to flinch,” coach Robert Saleh said after New York’s stunning 20-17 victory Sunday.

The defense shut down Josh Allen, Zach Wilson threw a touchdown pass and Greg Zuerlein kicked a go-ahead 28-yard field goal with 1:43 remaining to send the Jets (6-3) into their bye-week break a half-game behind the division-leading Bills (6-2).

“I know a lot of people are going to be surprised, right?” Saleh said. “I don’t think there’s a person surprised in the locker room.”

With the game tied at 17, the Jets got the ball at their own 4 and 7:53 left – and they hit the ground running.

After marching downfield to the Bills 18 on eight straight running plays while draining the clock against a weary Buffalo defense, Wilson connected with Denzel Mims for 12 yards on third-and-5. But the drive stalled when Wilson was sacked by Damar Hamlin on third down and the Jets settled for Zuerlein’s field goal.

Allen got the ball back, but couldn’t manage much.

A holding call on Dion Dawkins wiped out a long pass to Stefon Diggs. Two plays later, Bryce Huff had a strip-sack of Allen that Buffalo recovered at its 14.

After an incompletion to Diggs, Allen launched a deep desperation pass to Gabe Davis – but rookie Sauce Gardner knocked the ball away and sealed the unlikely victory for the Jets. It also ended the Bills’ four-game winning streak.

“We expected to win this game,” Wilson said.

Wilson finished 18 of 25 for 154 yards and a TD pass to James Robinson, who scored for the first time since being acquired last week from Jacksonville. Michael Carter had a 6-yard touchdown run.

But the defense did its job against Allen, intercepting him twice and sacking him five times. Allen was 18 of 34 for 205 yards – held without a TD pass for the first time since Week 17 of last season against Atlanta – and the INTs by Gardner and Jordan Whitehead.

Allen ran for 86 yards and two touchdowns, but the Bills fell to 0-2 against division opponents.

“It’s tough to win in this league when you’re playing a good team and your quarterback plays like (crap),” Allen said. “Made some bad decisions tonight. Really cost our team.”

Allen was seen flexing his right hand after the strip-sack.

“There’s some slight pain,” he said. “I’ll get through it.”

Things took a strange turn when Wilson and the Jets’ offense were marching downfield on their opening drive of the second half. A SkyCam camera whirled out of control and delayed the play on the field for 12 minutes until a camera operator was able to corral it.

“It only happens to the Jets,” a smiling Saleh said.

Added Wilson: “I’ve never seen that before.”

The teams resumed play, but the Jets were immediately called for a false start penalty. Three plays later, Wilson was sacked by Von Miller and his fumble recovered by A.J. Epenesa to give Buffalo the ball.

The sack gave Miller 122 1/2 for his career, surpassing Simeon Rice (122) for 20th place on the NFL’s list.

But then New York’s defense stiffened, with Quinnen Williams sacking Allen and Gardner coming up with an interception to give the Jets the ball at the Bills 19. Wilson’s 7-yard pass to Robinson put the Jets ahead 17-14 with 4:03 left in the third quarter.

Tyler Bass’ 51-yard field goal tied it for Buffalo with 13:33 remaining.

“We had opportunities overall and we shot ourselves in the foot,” Bills coach Sean McDermott said. “Give credit where credit is due. They made more plays than we did. In some ways, we beat ourselves.”

After Allen was intercepted by Whitehead on the Bills’ third play from scrimmage, Buffalo converted three third-down plays on its next drive, including an 11-yard run by Allen that was initially ruled a touchdown before video review showed he was short of the goal line. On the next play, the Bills quarterback pushed forward to give Buffalo a 7-0 lead.

Allen’s second touchdown run came with 6:30 left in the first half on a 36-yard scamper – the longest TD run of his career.

Carter’s 6-yard run up the middle to cut New York’s deficit to 14-10 late in the second quarter.

The Bills had a chance to add to their lead, but Bass’ 55-yard attempt was wide right as time expired in the half.

INJURIES

Bills: Edge rusher Greg Rousseau left in the first half with an ankle injury. … CB Kaiir Elam injured an ankle in the third quarter. … CB Tre’Davious White was activated from injured reserve this week and didn’t appear on Buffalo’s injury report, but was inactive. … LB Matt Milano (oblique) sat out after being questionable.

Jets: DT Sheldon Rankins injured his left elbow in the first quarter and didn’t return.

UP NEXT

Bills: Return home to take on the Minnesota Vikings next Sunday.

Jets: Head into their bye-week break before a rematch with the AFC East rival Patriots in New England on Nov. 20.

VIKINGS COME BACK TO BEAT COMMANDERS FOR 6TH CONSECUTIVE WIN

LANDOVER, Md. (AP) Kirk Cousins got the game ball after leading the Minnesota Vikings to a comeback victory against the team he started his NFL career with, and the first thought that came to his mind was starting a chant with the most famous words from his time with Washington.

“You like that?! You like that?” he and his teammates shouted in the visiting locker room.

Cousins and the Vikings are off to their best start since 2009 after rallying to beat the Commanders 20-17 Sunday. They really like that.

“We’re finding ways to win,” Cousins said. “We grind on and keep trying to pull them out in the end here.”

Minnesota pulled out this win thanks to two touchdown passes by Cousins, Harrison Smith’s interception of Taylor Heinicke and a go-ahead 28-yard field goal by Greg Joseph with 12 seconds left.

Playing his first game at Washington as a visitor, Cousins rebounded from an interception at the end of the first half and popped back up after one of several big hits to finish 20 of 40 for 265 yards with TD passes to Justin Jefferson and Dalvin Cook. He led three fourth-quarter scoring drives to cap off an emotional return that started with pulling into a familiar stadium in an unfamiliar role and ended with smiles.

“It feels great to win in this league,” Cousins said. “I had so many warm memories coming in, and so on the way out, to be able to remember those as well with a win is so much better than after a loss.”

Besides catching Cousins’ first TD pass in the first quarter, Jefferson came down with a 47-yard completion in the fourth. Jefferson finished with seven catches for 115 yards as the Vikings (7-1) extended their lead atop the NFC North and avoided what would have been their first loss since Sept. 19 at Philadelphia.

“A win is a win,” safety Camryn Bynum said. “We’ve got to know that we’re not playing our best ball yet, but it’s coming.”

Heinicke’s magic ran out on the interception after he threw two touchdown passes, including an inexplicable heave into triple coverage that Curtis Samuel came down with after a Minnesota defender ran into an official, and had the crowd chanting his name. He was 14 of 27 for 139 yards but could not lead another game-winning scoring drive, and the Commanders (4-5) had their winning streak snapped at three.

“We got some opportunities,” coach Ron Rivera said. “We didn’t take advantage of the opportunities. Enough mistakes to go around for everybody.”

One of those mistakes was a penalty on defensive lineman John Ridgeway on Joseph’s initial field goal attempt with under two minutes remaining, which allowed the Vikings to run the clock down further and effectively ice the game.

“We teach the guy to go across the guy’s face to get across,” Rivera said. “What we were told is that he ran through the guy’s head and neck area. I can’t tell you whether he did or didn’t.”

BIZARRE PLAY

After Antonio Gibson gave Washington strong field position to start the second half with a 45-yard kickoff return, Heinicke provided one of the highlights of the game with one of the weirdest plays of the NFL season.

Heinicke made the risky decision to heave the ball into the air from midfield like a Hail Mary, and it looked like a certain interception until Bynum collided with back judge Steve Patrick, who was trying to get out of the way. Samuel got in front of Smith and cornerback Patrick Peterson and made the catch at the goal line.

“Definitely need to give a game ball to that ref for knocking down that safety,” Heinicke said with a chuckle.

HOCKENSON THRIVES

Tight end T.J. Hockenson caught all nine passes Cousins threw his way for 70 yards in his Vikings debut, less than a week after they acquired him in a deal at the trade deadline from division rival Detroit. Cousins praised Hockenson for learning Minnesota’s offense in four days after what took him four months.

“He’s kind of making me look bad,” Cousins said. “Not one time in the huddle did I feel like he was looking at me like he didn’t know what to do. Just very much on top of it – gave me a sense of ease as a result.”

HAPPY O’CONNELL

Cousins was not the only member of the Vikings able to celebrate a winning return. First-year coach Kevin O’Connell spent three seasons with Washington as an assistant and enjoyed this one in the aftermath of wife Leah giving birth to their fourth child, daughter Cassie Grace, Friday.

“I just feel so blessed having been there and then get a chance to make sure she was in a good place and would receive incredible care helped me to be confident to come out here with our team and try to get a win,” O’Connell said. “But I cannot wait to get back there. Just so excited to get back to my family and really spend some more time with my new daughter.”

INJURIES

Vikings: CB Cameron Dantzler left in the first half with an ankle injury and was quickly ruled out after halftime. O’Connell said Dantzler would likely have an MRI Monday and did not want to put a timetable on how much time the third-year pro might miss. … DT Dalvin Tomlinson missed the game with a calf injury.

Commanders: WR Jahan Dotson (hamstring) missed a fifth consecutive game and LB Cole Holcomb (foot) a second in a row.

UP NEXT

Vikings: Visit the Buffalo Bills next Sunday.

Commanders: Travel to Philadelphia to face the Eagles on Monday, Nov. 14.

SEAHAWKS WIN 4TH STRAIGHT, BEAT STRUGGLING CARDINALS 31-21

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) Geno Smith has spent the first half of the season making game-winning plays that have moved the surprising Seahawks to the top of the NFC West.

His impressive response to a potential game-losing play is evidence Seattle’s rise isn’t a fluke.

Smith lost the lead for Seattle in the third quarter by throwing a pick-6, but then led the offense on touchdown drives of 75, 81 and 85 yards down the stretch, pushing the Seahawks to a 31-21 victory over the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday.

“What a bounce back, what a fantastic finish to this game,” Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said.

Smith threw for 275 yards and two touchdowns while rookie Kenneth Walker III ran for 109 yards and two scores. The Seahawks have won four straight games while the Cardinals (3-6) have lost four of five.

For a moment, the Seahawks looked like they were in trouble. The Cardinals grabbed a 14-10 lead in the third quarter when Zaven Collins returned an interception 30 yards for a touchdown.

Smith said all he could do was acknowledge that Collins made a great play and then work on making amends.

“The NFL’s full of guys like that who make tremendous plays,” Smith said. “Sometimes things are going to happen where the ball doesn’t bounce your way. It’s how you respond. I think we responded great as a team.

“Going three straight drives, finishing with touchdowns, they were long drives, tough drives. Everyone in the stadium knew the magnitude of those drives. For us to go down, get scores, get touchdowns, it shows the type of team we are.”

Seattle took the lead for good late in the third quarter on Smith’s 9-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Lockett. That capped a 13-play, 75-yard drive.

The Seahawks extended their advantage to 24-14 midway through the fourth. Smith led a 13-play, 81-yard march that ended when Walker ran for a 1-yard score.

Walker – a second-round pick out of Michigan State – is averaging more than 100 yards on the ground over the past five games.

Seattle sacked Kyler Murray four times, including two by Uchenna Nwosu, and held the Cardinals to 262 total yards.

Arizona scored a late touchdown to pull within 24-21, but Seattle immediately responded with a 51-yard gain on a pass from Smith to Noah Fant, who caught the short throw and rumbled down the right sideline. Four plays later, Walker ran for a 5-yard score to cap the 85-yard drive.

The Cardinals lost the first of a three-game stretch against division opponents. Murray threw for 175 yards and two touchdowns, but lost a crucial fumble in the second quarter.

Collins gave the Cardinals some hope in the third quarter. Smith lofted a short pass to the right side that was intended for Walker, but Collins shed a block and jumped into the throw’s path, snatching the ball out of the air and running to the end zone.

But just like all season, the Cardinals were hurt by their own mistakes. They were called for 12 penalties and were plagued by dropped passes and botched snaps.

“We are hurting ourselves,” Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury said. “We’ve got to give ourselves a chance. This self-inflicted stuff is killing us.”

Said Murray: “We are just playing bad football. It is not winning football and that is the result you are going to get when you are out there doing stuff like that.”

The Seahawks led 10-7 at halftime. They went ahead early in the second quarter when Smith found DK Metcalf for a 4-yard touchdown. The Seahawks caught a break on the previous play when cornerback Byron Murphy Jr. dropped a potential interception.

The Cardinals looked like they might score late in the first half, but Murray fumbled on a scramble when Seattle’s Ryan Neal punched the ball out from behind. The Seahawks recovered.

It was Seattle’s 16th forced fumble of the season, which leads the NFL.

Murray hit DeAndre Hopkins for a 22-yard touchdown midway through the first quarter for a 7-3 lead. Hopkins made it to the end zone untouched thanks to a downfield block by running back James Conner, who had missed the previous three games because of an injury to his ribs.

It was the first time this season the Cardinals scored a touchdown on their first possession and was their first TD in the first quarter.

INJURIES

Seahawks: WR Marquise Goodwin (groin), LB Darrell Taylor (groin) and S Joey Blount (quad) were among the inactives. … LB Cullen Gillaspia (knee) was helped off the field in the second half and didn’t return.

Cardinals: C Rodney Hudson (knee), G Max Garcia (shoulder) and LB Dennis Gardeck (ankle) were among the inactives. … RG Will Hernandez (chest) left the game in the first quarter.

UP NEXT

Seahawks: Travel to Munich, Germany, where they will play Tampa Bay next Sunday.

Cardinals: At the Los Angeles Rams next Sunday.

BRADY THROWS LAST-MINUTE TD PASS, BUCS BEAT RAMS 16-13

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) Tom Brady stepped to the podium and reiterated how good it felt to stop his longest losing streak in 20 years.

“That was awesome,” the seven-time Super Bowl champion exclaimed Sunday. “That was (expletive) awesome!”

Brady tossed a 1-yard touchdown pass to rookie Cade Otton with 9 seconds remaining, giving the Bucs a sloppy but confidence-boosting 16-13 victory over the Los Angeles Rams in a matchup of the past two NFL champions.

Brady took over with 44 seconds left and went 5 of 6 for 60 yards on the game-winning drive, the record 55th of his career. The 45-year-old avoided his first four-game losing streak since 2002 and beat the Rams for the first time in four tries since joining the Bucs (4-5) two seasons ago.

“We needed it and we got it. We fought until the end,” Brady said. “The defense played great. We made some plays offensively. … Hopefully this gives us some confidence and we can win again next week and get to 5-5, which would be good for us at the bye week.”

Cooper Kupp scored on a 69-yard reception in the second quarter and Matt Gay kicked field goals of 26 and 35 yards after halftime for the Rams (3-5), who looked like they may be able hold on to win when they stopped Brady on downs from the Los Angeles 6 with just under two minutes to go.

But Matthew Stafford, who threw for 165 yards and one TD, was unable to run out the clock on the Rams’ final possession.

“That’s what you want on offense, right? You want that opportunity to be able to kneel on it, and we’re four, five yards away,” Stafford said.

“Tom’s a heck of a player. He did a great job. I thought our defense played great all night,” Stafford added. “It’s a lot to ask to have them do that twice there late in the game. We definitely had our opportunity, and we didn’t capitalize. It’s really disappointing.”

Brady finished 36 of 58 for 280 yards, becoming the first player in NFL history to throw for more than 100,000 yards in a career – even though he averaged just 4.8 yards per attempt in the Bucs’ largely one-dimensional, short-passing offense. He surpassed the milestone on a 15-yard completion to Leonard Fournette that set up the last of Ryan Succop’s three field goals.

The league’s career passing leader began the day needing 164 yards to reach a plateau Brady concedes no one would have imagined was possible when he entered the NFL as a sixth-round draft pick in 2000.

Brady, who owns nearly every meaningful league passing record, went over the mark in his 374th career game, including playoffs.

“It’s all about the win,” he said. “I’ve never cared about that.”

Brady set a couple more records late, moving ahead of Peyton Manning for the most game-winning drives and matching Manning with his 43rd career fourth-quarter comeback.

“We always have a chance with (Brady), grateful to have him,” coach Todd Bowles said. “He got over 100,000 yards. … He still plays at a high level, love the guy to death.”

Stafford finished 13 of 27 without an interception. Kupp, playing on a sore ankle he injured in the previous week’s loss against San Francisco, had eight catches for 127 yards.

Like the Buccaneers, the Rams have sputtered offensively the first half of the season. Both teams rank near the bottom of the league in scoring and on Sunday once again barely resembled the teams that faced each other in the playoffs last January.

Tampa Bay’s red-zone problems persisted, with Brady settling for Succop’s 20-yard field goal on the Bucs’ opening possession. Meanwhile, Stafford’s long TD pass to Kupp accounted for most of the 104 yards the Rams gained before halftime.

Succop’s third field goal trimmed the Rams’ lead to 13-9. Brady led a drive to the Rams 6 on his next possession, but the threat stalled with three straight incompletions into the end zone. Jalen Ramsey broke up the fourth pass, but but couldn’t hold on for an interception.

“There’s really no other way to put it, this is a tough pill to swallow,” Rams coach Sean McVay said.

“I thought our defense did enough to win. Clearly offensively, not even close to good enough. I’m a big part of that. … Had a chance to be able to close out the game out there, really didn’t get it done,” McVay added. “This is not good enough. Changes have to be made. Adjustments have to be made. We can’t continue to go on with this.”

STREAK CONTINUES

Brady hasn’t thrown an interception since a Week 1 victory over Dallas, a stretch of 373 consecutive attempts. His touchdown-to-interception ratio this season is an NFL-best 10-to-1.

SLOPPY PLAY

While never team turned the ball over, there were plenty of errant throws and dropped passes that contributed to the Rams only having 206 yards of total offense and the Bucs not getting into the end zone until the closing seconds.

For much of the day, punter Jake Camarda was Tampa Bay’s most effective weapon. The rookie backed Los Angeles up with kicks of 68, 74 and 66 yards.

INJURIES

Rams: T Alaric Jackson (knee) left in the first quarter.

Buccaneers: CBs Carlton Davis (hip) and Sean Murphy-Bunting (quad) returned after sitting out the previous week’s loss to Baltimore. WR Russell Gage (hamstring), S Antoine Winfield Jr (concussion), G Luke Geodeke (foot) and TE Cameron Brate (neck) were inactive.

UP NEXT

Rams: Return home to host Arizona next Sunday.

Buccaneers: Travel to Munich, Germany to face Seattle next Sunday.

MAHOMES HELPS CHIEFS RALLY PAST TITANS 20-17 IN OVERTIME

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) Patrick Mahomes was probably having flashbacks Sunday night to his days at Texas Tech, when he would scramble around like a kid playing sandlot football while routinely throwing the ball 60-plus times in a game.

The Chiefs needed all of it – every run, every throw, every yard – to rally past the Tennessee Titans.

Mahomes finished 43 of 68 for 446 yards and a touchdown, and he ran for the tying score and 2-point conversion late in the fourth quarter, before Harrison Butker atoned for two earlier misses by drilling the go-ahead field goal in overtime and lifting the Chiefs to the 20-17 victory.

“I did not know I threw that many,” Mahomes said with a smile, “but yeah, Texas Tech, I threw a couple, so I’m able to do it.”

Chiefs coach Andy Reid improved to 21-3 coming off a bye by beating a franchise that has long been his nemesis. He was just 2-9 against the Titans – heck, Reid has three wins against the Chiefs – including a 27-3 loss in Nashville last year.

It was only the second win for Kansas City (6-2) in its last seven games against the Titans.

“You have to be able to win a game like that,” Reid said, “where everything isn’t just perfect, and your emotions are up and down and you have to fight through. We were so close on so many plays. Step up and let’s go.”

Things were spiraling toward another disappointment the way Derrick Henry was chewing up yardage against the Kansas City defense, and the way the Titans (5-3) were shutting down Mahomes and Co. into the fourth quarter.

Indeed, the Chiefs were trailing 17-9 and time was running out when they took over at their own 7-yard line. But in vintage Mahomes fashion, he willed his team downfield. His 20-yard scramble on third-and-17 kept the drive going, and his third-and-9 touchdown scramble along with his 2-point conversion run knotted the game with 2:56 to go.

After the Chiefs won the overtime coin toss, the Titans nearly stopped them, only for Noah Gray to make a nifty third-down catch. Then, Mahomes hit JuJu Smith-Schuster on fourth down to keep the drive alive – and the clock moving.

Butker drilled his 28-yarder to give Kansas City the lead with 4:04 left in overtime.

The Chiefs proceeded to stuff Henry, then sacked Titans rookie Malik Willis on back-to-back plays, before batting down his fourth-down throw to end the game and send fireworks flying into the sky above Arrowhead Stadium.

“When you get to those end of the game situations,” Mahomes said, “you have to try to go out there and make it happen.”

Henry finished with 115 yards rushing and two touchdowns for the Titans. But he didn’t get a whole lot of help from Willis, who got his second start in place of the injured Ryan Tannehill, and was just 5 of 16 for 80 yards.

“I’m very disappointed. I feel terrible for the players,” Titans coach Mike Vrabel said. “They compete, and put so much into this, and play through pain and discomfort and any situation. I’m lucky to coach them. They fight.”

The Chiefs figured the best way to shut down Henry, who had run for 219 yards and two touchdowns last week against Houston, was to keep him off the field. They opened the game with a 15-play march that took up 8 1/2 minutes and ended in a field goal, then forced a punt and went 79 yards with Mahomes finding Hardman for the touchdown.

All told, the Chiefs held the ball nearly 13 of the 15 minutes in the first quarter.

The Titans finally got going in the second, and it was Willis using his legs to get Kansas City off balance. The fleet-footed rookie twice scrambled for good yardage before Henry turned a direct snap into a 4-yard TD run.

After forcing a punt, Henry went to work again. He slipped through the line untouched and was finally dragged down 56 yards later. Then, the 247-pound running back pounded into the end zone to give the Titans a 14-9 lead.

It was Henry’s 74th career touchdown run, moving him past Earl Campbell for the most in franchise history.

The Chiefs, meanwhile, were incapable of running the ball. And with the Titans no longer worried about stopping the rush, they began to relentlessly pressure Mahomes. Denico Autry’s first sack forced a punt, then his second on third-and-1 near midfield prevented Kansas City from getting points just before halftime.

The Titans eventually extended the lead when Mahomes was picked off by rookie Roger McCreary, setting up Randy Bullock’s 44-yard field goal. But their own offense started to fizzle, and despite Butker’s missed field goal – he also missed an earlier extra point – the Chiefs managed to get the late touchdown they needed to force overtime.

“It was a struggle,” Reid said. “We were up and down and the guys hung together.”

TANNEHILL TRIED

Tannehill was limited in practice Wednesday and Friday but did not practice at all Thursday and was questionable for the game. He tried warming up but never planted his ailing ankle before walking off the field with Tennessee coach Mike Vrabel about two hours before kickoff. He was made inactive 30 minutes later.

INJURIES

Titans: FS Josh Thompson left in the second half with a knee injury. LB Bud Dupree left with a hip injury.

Chiefs: CB Jaylen Watson landed awkwardly on his neck in the first half, though he eventually returned to the game.

UP NEXT

The Titans return home to face Denver on Sunday.

The Chiefs get a visit from Jacksonville on Sunday.

AP TOP 25: GEORGIA HAS NO. 1 ON LOCK, ‘BAMA DROPS TO NO. 10

(AP) — Georgia tightened its hold on No. 1 in The Associated Press college football poll Sunday, with TCU climbing up to No. 4 and Alabama dropping all the way to No. 10.

The Bulldogs had their strongest support of the season after manhandling Tennessee in a 1-2 matchup on Saturday. Georgia received 62 of 63 first-place votes from the media panel in the AP Top 25 presented by Regions Bank.

No. 2 Ohio State got the other first-place vote. Michigan moved up a spot to No. 3 and TCU jumped three spots to its highest ranking since late in the 2017 season.

No. 5 Tennessee fell three spots after losing on the road to the defending national champions.

For the first time in the College Football Playoff era, Alabama and Clemson lost on the same day and both tumbled in the rankings. The Crimson Tide (7-2) fell to LSU by a point in overtime to end up at No. 10 – their worst ranking since 2015.

LSU jumped eight spots to No. 7, the Tigers’ best ranking since they started No. 6 in 2020. That was when they stumbled out of the gate a season after winning the national title.

Oregon reached a season-high No. 6 and Pac-12 rivals No. 8 Southern California and No. 9 UCLA finished out the top 10.

Clemson fell seven spots to a season-low No. 12 after losing to Notre Dame. Last year, the Tigers fell all the way out of the Top 25 for the first time since 2011.

POLL POINTS

Alabama held on to its top-10 ranking and its streak of weeks ranked in the top 10. The Crimson Tide has a streak of 120 straight polls ranked no worse than 10. That is the second longest such streak in the history of AP poll, behind Miami (1985-93).

IN

– No. 18 Texas has yo-yoed back into the rankings this week and still has a chance to win the Big 12.

– No. 20 Notre Dame went from preseason No. 5 to unranked by Week Three. After taking a circuitous road, the Fighting Irish are back to being ranked.

– No. 24 Washington had a moment in September, then stumbled on the road. The Huskies are real tough at home and that’s been good enough.

– No. 25 Florida State was ranked for a week in October before a three-game losing streak. The Seminoles might stick around this time.

OUT

– Atlantic Coast Conference rivals Syracuse and Wake Forest departed the rankings after absorbing second straight losses. The Demon Deacons are unranked for the first time this season.

– Oklahoma State is also out of the Top 25 for the first time this season.

– Oregon State had a one-week stay after breaking a nine-season Top 25 drought.

CONFERENCE CALL

SEC – 5 (Nos. 1, 5, 7, 10, 11).

Pac-12 – 5 (Nos. 6, 8, 9, 13, 24).

ACC – 4 (Nos. 12, 15, 17, 25).

Big Ten – 4 (Nos. 2, 3, 14, 21).

Big 12 – 3 (Nos. 4, 18, 23).

American – 2 (Nos. 16, 22).

Independents – 2 (Nos. 19, 20).

RANKED vs. RANKED

No. 10 Alabama at No. 11 Mississippi.

No. 24 Washington at No. 6 Oregon.

No. 4 TCU at No. 18 Texas.

No. 22 UCF at No. 16 Tulane.

MEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL PREVIEW

25 Storylines to Watch

1. New Kings in the Castle

Last year, UNC’s Hubert Davis led a run to the national title game after taking over for the legendary Roy Williams. Can Duke’s Jon Scheyer do the same following Coach K’s long farewell

tour? What about Villanova’s Kyle Neptune stepping in after Jay Wright’s abrupt retirement?

2. Rock, Chalk, Back-to-Back?

Kansas survived the gauntlet of the 2022 NCAA Tournament to capture a second national

title under Bill Self. The Jayhawks lost their top three scorers (and five of their top seven),

including two first-round picks in the NBA Draft. Can KU find its way to the sport’s pinnacle

once again? And will the long-awaited NCAA punishment ever get handed down?

3. Big Blue Nation Singing the Blues

Nearly eight years have passed since the Cats’ quest for perfection in 2015 ended at the

surgical hands of Sam Dekker, Frank Kaminsky and the Wisconsin Badgers. The last seven

Final Fours have been played without the bluest of blue blood programs. Last year, UK was

the punchline to Saint Peter’s infectious NCAA Tournament run. Patience is growing thin in

Lexington.

4. Tar Heel Encore

Tall enough or not, UNC fans boarded an erratic roller coaster in Hubert Davis’ first season in

charge. Early defensive foibles eventually gave way to a torrid close to the season — including some all-time victories in the storied rivalry with Duke. With four talented starters back

and several enticing newcomers, how will the Heels respond to dizzying expectations?

5. Gonzaga Fatigue

Mark Few’s Bulldogs have lived atop the AP Poll for two years running but have yet to capture the elusive NCAA Championship. Can the Zags — once again a near-unanimous top 3

team — overcome the skepticism and finally stamp their entry into the “You Can’t Question

Us” club?

6. The Evolution of NIL

Throughout the offseason, name, image and likeness (NIL) storylines have filled the airwaves

and the pockets of players — to the chagrin of some. What happens if an obscure player far

outperforms expectations? Could we see a midseason holdout? Paging Isaiah Wong…

7. Jersey Boy

Shaheen Holloway pinned the Peacocks to our hearts during Saint Peter’s rollicking run to

the Elite Eight in the 2021 NCAA Tournament. Holloway then parlayed that Cinderella run

into a new job at his alma mater, Seton Hall. What does he have in store for his encore performance?

8. What’s Bugging the B1G?

In the last two NCAA Tournaments, the Big Ten has put 18 teams in the field, including eight

protected seeds (1-4). And yet, the league has flamed out, with just three total teams making

it the Sweet 16 and none making the Final Four. Is it just bad luck? Or is it something more?

9. Feast Week Fever

With two different Phil Knight brackets in Portland, plus loaded fields at the Maui Invitational,

Battle 4 Atlantis and other MTEs, this might be the best Thanksgiving Week ever for college

hoops. Start clearing your schedules — and tell your relatives you’ll see them at Christmas.

10. Texas Takeover

Houston is a top-five team nationally. Baylor is right there too. Texas, TCU and Texas Tech

are all Top 25-caliber with plenty of intrigue and upside. How many Lone Star representatives will crash the Final Four in Houston? Can the state get two teams in for just the second

time ever?

11. Will There Be A POY Race?

Very rarely does the consensus National Player of the Year return to school, but that’s where

we’re at this season. Kentucky’s double-double machine Oscar Tshiebwe may turn grouchy if

anyone tries to take his award. Does anyone in Division I have the gusto to swipe his trophy?

12. The Bluejays Spread Their Wings

A productive freshman class and some impressive short-handed performances late in the

year vaulted Creighton to the forefront of the college basketball hive mind. The Bluejays have

made the Elite Eight just once — 81 years ago, in 1941. Will this be their basketball season

ever?

13. Emoni Heads East(ern), Home

The once-heralded high school prospect flamed out at Memphis, but Emoni Bates is back

where it all began. Bates, the former Ypsi Prep prodigy, opted to return to his roots this summer when he announced Eastern Michigan as his final destination. His cache instantly amplifies the EMU hype chorus, but there’s no guarantee this 5-star prospect lands smoothly at

his arrival destination. A September arrest has only added to the intrigue and put in question

if Bates will even see the floor.

14. A Key(ontae) Question in the Little Apple

It’s been nearly two years since a terrifying on-court collapse seemingly ended Keyontae

Johnson’s basketball career. Against all odds, the 2020 SEC Preseason Player of the Year

has resurfaced at Kansas State, buoying hopes for a quick rebuild under Jerome Tang. Are

all of Johnson’s medical issues behind him? Will he really forego a $5 million insurance policy

by playing more than 10 games?

15. Luck Be A Lady This Year

Both Providence and Wisconsin captured regular season conference championships last

year despite middling analytical rankings. Detractors attributed the success to “luck,” while

fans insisted that winning close games is a skill. What kind of encore will each program have?

16. Syracuse Swan Song?

Seriously, how long can Jim Boeheim coach for? He outlasted the Carrier Dome moniker, for

Pete’s sake! There was a succession plan at one point, but it fell through when Mike Hopkins

hopped to Washington in 2017. Oh, and will Boeheim reveal any surprise children on the roster?

17. Boomerang Bosses

Two Big East schools reverted to their previous purveyors this offseason, with Xavier bringing

back Sean Miller and Butler ushering in a second Thad Matta phase. The hope is that both

programs will fare better than DePaul did with its stinker of a project, Dave Leitao: The Sequel.

18. SEC: Some Exciting (New) Coaches

You know the headliners: Calipari, Pearl, Barnes, Musselman. Heck, even Nate Oats and Buzz

Williams are recognizable to most college hoop aficionados. But the SEC saw six (!) new

hires this offseason, including Florida’s Todd Golden and LSU’s Matt McMahon. Will they

succeed?

19. Welcome To Fabulous Las Vegas

The Big Dance is heading to Sin City for the first time ever. Las Vegas will host the NCAA

Tournament’s West Regional, meaning we have the chance to see a coach — or player —

win big at the blackjack table and clinch a Final Four berth within mere hours of each other.

Finally!

20. NCAA Tournament Nerves

Hold your brackets close at night. Fears of a drastic change coming to the mid-major-infused

NCAA Tournament have crept into the back of our minds. The almighty football dollar continues to threaten changes to our beloved event, so we must enjoy it to the fullest — while

we still can.

21. Is an Encore in Store?

First-year coaches killed it in 2021-22, including Arizona’s Tommy Lloyd, Iowa State’s T.J. Otzelberger, Texas Tech’s Mark Adams and UNC’s Hubert Davis. Even guys like Shaka Smart,

Drew Valentine, and Mike Woodson had impressive debuts. Can they keep up their momentum?

22. Mitten Mediocrity?

Michigan State has had two straight seasons that were well below par for the legendary Tom

Izzo. The Spartans are just 20-20 in Big Ten play over that span. Meanwhile, Juwan Howard’s

Michigan Wolverines barely snuck into the NCAA Tournament itself. Can either flagship program in the Great Lake State vault back into the country’s elite?

23. Feel the (Au)burn

Last year’s Auburn Tigers secured a regular season SEC Championship and a 2-seed in the

Big Dance on the strength of its NBA-caliber frontcourt. Bruce Pearl brought in some talented reinforcements there, but the Tigers’ fortunes could hinge on their talented-but-erratic

backcourt. Wendell Green and KD Johnson will certainly shoot their shots — but will enough

of them go in?

24. Chaos in Queens

Few backcourts in the country are faster than Posh Alexander and Andre Curbelo — of

course, few are as bricky, either. Mike Anderson has quite a lab experiment going in Queens,

but it could flourish in his 40 Minutes of Hell scheme. Or, the chemistry set could blow up in

his face.

25. An Ode to Mid-Major Dynamos

In the mid-major world, there’s a breeding ground for smallish guards who can score in

droves. Liberty’s Darius McGhee and Detroit’s Antoine Davis are back for a bonus year, and

others like UAB’s Jelly Walker and Oral Roberts’ Max Abmas will be making plenty of their

own headlines.

25 MID-MAJOR TEAMS TO WATCH

1. UAB Blazers

Head coach Andy Kennedy returns three starters from an NCAA Tournament team, including the frontrunner for C-USA Player of the Year, Jelly Walker. The backcourt pairing of Walker and LSU transfer Eric Gaines should be one of the nations’ best.

2. North Texas Mean Green

The Mean Green have turned into a juggernaut under head coach Grant McCasland,

winning 20-plus games in four of the past five seasons. Standout guard Tylor Perry — a

threat to go for 20 on any given night — and a disciplined defense lead the way.

3. Drake Bulldogs

Drake returns five players who started at least 13 games from a 25-win squad. The

Bulldogs are the clear-cut favorites in the Missouri Valley and look to earn their second

NCAA Tournament bid in three years behind do-everything sophomore Tucker DeVries.

4. Furman Paladins

SoCon Player of the Year candidates Jalen Slawson and Mike Bothwell return for their

fifth-year seasons hoping to end Furman’s lengthy NCAA Tournament drought. Head

coach Bob Richey and his always-potent offense are the heavy league favorites.

5. Western Kentucky Hilltoppers

WKU has never lacked in the talent department under head coach Rick Stansbury, but

the Hilltoppers have yet to see the Big Dance in six seasons. With high-level studs in Jamarion Sharp, Dayvion McKnight, and Emmanuel Akot, that could soon change.

6. Toledo Rockets

The Rockets return four starters from their 26-win MAC regular-season championship

team. Frontcourt duo Setric Millner and JT Shumate will battle for all-conference honors, and senior point guard RayJ Dennis returns to lead Tod Kowalczyk’s attack.

7. Liberty Flames

Liberty looks to go out on top in its final season in the ASUN. Led by one of the best

scorers in the country in Darius McGhee and coached by the excellent Ritchie McKay,

the Flames look to win the ASUN and make a little noise in the NCAA Tournament.

8. Kent State Golden Flashes

Kent State looks to ride the momentum of a 14-2 finish and compete for a MAC title this

season. Reigning MAC Player of the Year Sincere Carry returns, as does All-Defensive

Team guard Malique Jacobs. The Flashes will be dangerous on both sides of the ball.

9. Iona Gaels

Rick Pitino’s Gaels were one of the most dominating mid-majors in the country last year,

upsetting Alabama in November before rolling to a 17-3 MAAC finish. With star forward

Nelly Junior Joseph back in the mix, Iona looks to end things with a Big Dance berth.

10. South Dakota State Jackrabbits

The Jackrabbits ran the table in the Summit last season and are now 40-6 in Eric Henderson’s three-year tenure. While key pieces depart, SDSU brings back enough, including sophomore guard Zeke Mayo, to win the league and get back to the Dance.

11. Towson Tigers

The Tigers shocked the CAA last season, poo-pooing an eighth-place preseason poll

selection and instead going 15-3 in conference play. Towson was clearly the league’s

best team last year, but it’s still hunting its first NCAA Tournament appearance since

1991.

12. Grand Canyon Antelopes

Head coach Bryce Drew adds an injection of talent to this year’s squad with transfers

Rayshon Harrison and Noah Baumann coming to town. All-WAC Jovan Blacksher returns to lead the show and take the ‘Lopes dancing for the second time in three years.

13. New Mexico State Aggies

Chris Jans left for Mississippi State, but the Aggies still promise to be a WAC contender

under the watchful eye of head coach Greg Heiar. In true NMSU fashion, Heiar brings in

a gaggle of transfers, highlighted by SEC defectors Xavier Pinson and DaJuan Gordon.

14. Oral Roberts Golden Eagles

Two-time Honorable Mention All-American Max Abmas returns to continue his quest

to break the 2,000-point mark for his storied career. He’ll once more lead ORU and its

experienced group that features four returning starters looking to play Cinderella again.

15. Bradley Braves

The Braves will never win a beauty pageant for their physical, gritty style of play, but that

won’t stop them. Four starters are back including All-League big man Rienk Mast, and

reigning Sun Belt Freshman of the Year Duke Deen transfers in to run the point.

16. Southern Illinois Salukis

Southern Illinois looks poised to finally compete for a Missouri Valley title in head coach

Bryan Mullins’ fourth season. The Salukis’ top two scorers, Marcus Domask and Lance

Jones, are back in Carbondale, and Mullins adds two talented guards from the portal.

17. UC Santa Barbara Gauchos

The Gauchos look to bounce back after a disappointing season and grab a second Big

West title in three seasons. Freshman of the Year Ajay Mitchell could be the POY this

time, and head coach Joe Pasternack added Pac-12 talent in 6-8 transer Andre Kelly.

18. Georgia State Panthers

Jonas Hayes takes over in Atlanta following an epic run as the interim coach at Xavier,

during which he led the Musketeers to the NIT title. He inherits a capable roster, enhanced by Xavier transfer Dwon Odom and Charleston transfer Brenden Tucker.

19. Hofstra Pride

Reigning CAA Player of the Year Aaron Estrada is back to lead the Pride to the top of

the league. Head coach and Hofstra legend Speedy Claxton enjoyed an excellent first

season on the sidelines and now looks to build upon his 13-5 CAA record in Year 2.

20. Akron Zips

Double-double machine — and reigning MAC Defensive Player of the Year — Enrique

Freeman returns to try to lead his Zips to back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances. He’ll have help from three other returning starters and a winning coach in John Groce.

21. Vermont Catamounts

Head coach John Becker has won an astonishing 84 percent of his games in the America East over 11 seasons, and his Catamounts have six consecutive league titles. New

league mate Bryant could be a threat, but the AEC still runs through Burlington.

22. Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks

The Lumberjacks wasted no time acclimating to the WAC, finishing 14-4 and tying for

first place in Year 1. A solid core, led by senior guard Roti Ware, and head coach Kyle

Keller’s always-stingy defense should have SFA competing near the top once again.

23. Northern Kentucky Norse

Four starters return from a 14-6 Horizon squad, including leading scorer Marques Warrick, making the Norse the odds-on league favorites in 2022-23. Head coach Darrin

Horn hopes to get off to a strong start in the nonconference slate to build momentum.

24. Longwood Lancers

Fresh off arguably the most surprising season in all of college basketball, head coach

Griff Aldrich now has everyone’s attention. Fifth-year seniors Isaiah Wilkins and DeShaun Wade lead a squad looking to repeat its dominant 15-1 league performance.

25. Penn Quakers

Penn looks to prove it’s the class of the Ivy behind the efforts of a plethora of returning

players. All-Ivy point guard Jordan Dingle and his 20-plus scoring average is back to

wreak havoc in The Palestra and carry the Quakers to their first Big Dance since 2018.

GARLAND, MITCHELL LEAD CAVS PAST LAKERS TO 8TH STRAIGHT WIN

LOS ANGELES (AP) Donovan Mitchell scored 33 points and Darius Garland added 24 in the dynamic Cleveland backcourt’s return from injury absences, and the Cavaliers rolled past LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers 114-100 Sunday for their eighth consecutive victory.

Jarrett Allen added 16 points to back the Cleveland guards’ latest two-man show while the Cavs improved to 8-1, extending their longest winning streak since a 13-game run in late 2017 during James’ final season with the team.

James scored 27 points, but lost to his hometown Cavaliers for only the second time in 19 meetings during his 20-year NBA career. He took his only other loss in March 2011 while with Miami.

“You’ve always got to have respect for greatness,” said Mitchell, who grew up a fan of James and the Cavs. “When the greatest are on the floor, you just go out there and try to find a way to compete and get a win. We came out there and were just trying to do what we’ve been doing, and fortunately it was against Bron, but that wasn’t a talking point or anything.”

Mitchell remained in a groove with his new team, topping 30 points for the sixth time in eight games.

Cleveland hasn’t made the playoffs without James on its roster since 1998, but this current group appears primed to make its own history. The Cavs trailed by 12 in the first half during a slow start that coach J.B. Bickerstaff dryly attributed to “LA,” but they smoothly surged away in the second half.

“LeBron does a lot for the city, did a lot for the city,” Garland said. “So just having a whole different generation of guys with a whole bunch of talent, and just a great team overall that everybody loves, it would mean a lot for us and the city of Cleveland (to make the playoffs again). That’s what we’re pushing for.”

Anthony Davis had 19 points and 12 rebounds for the Lakers, who dropped to 2-7 with their second straight home defeat. Russell Westbrook had 19 points and 10 assists with seven turnovers in another lively performance as a reserve, but the Lakers had no defensive answers for Mitchell or Garland.

“I got in trouble last time when I was just giving an honest opinion” about the Cavs during last season’s All-Star break, James said with a smile. “Which I don’t care, so I’ll give another. … They did a great job in the offseason of picking up a big-time player. They have a really good team and a great coach. A well-balanced team and a bunch of players (who) seem like they just really want to play ball.”

Garland had played in just one of the Cavs’ previous seven games due to an eye injury and a subsequent knee injury. Garland and Mitchell (left ankle sprain) sat out Cleveland’s win over Detroit on Friday, but both stars returned in top form with a combined 17-for-35 shooting, four 3-pointers and a 19-for-20 performance at the free throw line.

“We just didn’t come out ready (in the second half),” Westbrook said. “We were playing catch-up.”

TIP-INS

Cavaliers: USC product and Southern California native Evan Mobley had five points on 2-of-7 shooting and seven rebounds in 30 minutes.

Lakers: Had the lead after the first quarter of play for the first time this season. … Kendrick Nunn played 18 scoreless minutes in his first start in place of Patrick Beverley, who sat out with an illness. … James snapped his skid of 16 consecutive missed 3-point attempts across four games with a bucket in the fourth quarter.

UP NEXT

Cavaliers: At Clippers on Monday.

Lakers: At Jazz on Monday.

VANVLEET HAS 30 POINTS AND 11 ASSISTS AS RAPTORS BEAT BULLS

TORONTO (AP) Fred VanVleet returned from injury with season highs of 30 points and 11 assists, Scottie Barnes had 19 points and 10 rebounds, and the Toronto Raptors overcame the absence of leading scorer Pascal Siakam to beat the Chicago Bulls 113-104 on Sunday.

O.G. Anunoby scored 22 points, Gary Trent Jr. had 12 and Christian Koloko added career highs of 11 points and six blocks.

VanVleet returned after missing three games because of a sore lower back. He made five of Toronto’s 10 3-pointers.

“You always want your point guard in the lineup,” Koloko said. “We need him. He’s one of our best shooters.”

Nikola Vucevic had 18 points and 12 rebounds, Alex Caruso had a career-high 11 rebounds and 11 assists and DeMar DeRozan scored 20 points for the Bulls, who lost their second straight.

DeRozan shot 7 for 9, matching his season low for field goal attempts.

“I don’t know what other choices you’ve got other than to go try to get it out of his hands a lot,” Raptors coach Nick Nurse said of his defensive focus on DeRozan.

Chicago guard Goran Dragic matched his season high with 16 points, Ayo Dosunmu scored 15 and Patrick Williams had 13.

Siakam is expected to miss at least two weeks because of a strained right adductor muscle. Siakam was injured when slipped and fell in the third quarter of Friday’s loss at Dallas.

VanVleet said the Raptors have several players ready to step up while Siakam is out.

“If you’re on the end of the rotation, your eyes should be big and your mouth should be watering,” VanVleet said.

Zach LaVine sat for the Bulls, who host Toronto on Monday night in the second game of this back-to-back.

LaVine, who had left knee surgery in the offseason, sat out the first two games of the year and missed the first game of a back-to-back in late October.

VanVleet scored 30 or more eight times last season. Toronto was 7-1 in those games.

“Hell of a player, one of the best point guards in this league,” DeRozan said of his former teammate. “I didn’t expect anything less from him. That’s who he is, aggressive, changes the dynamic of the game.”

Chicago trailed 100-99 after a dunk by Williams with 4:23 left to play, but VanVleet converted a three-point play and Anunoby scored on a driving dunk after stealing Caruso’s pass to give the Raptors a 105-99 edge with 3:47 to go.

DeRozan’s three-point play with 2:01 remaining made it 107-102, but dunks from Barnes and Anunoby, the second off a bad pass from DeRozan, extended Toronto’s lead to 111-102.

Chicago had 17 turnovers, leading to 23 points for Toronto. DeRozan led the Bulls with five turnovers.

“I thought some of them were very careless,” Bulls coach Billy Donovan said of his team’s miscues.

Chicago led 36-33 one minute into the second quarter, but VanVleet scored 11 points in the period to give the Raptors a 55-49 halftime lead.

Toronto took an 83-82 edge to the fourth.

TIP-INS

Bulls: C Andre Drummond (left shoulder) sat for the fifth straight game, while G Coby White (left quadriceps) missed his fourth straight. . Vucevic had six assists.

Raptors: C Khem Birch (right knee) was out for the second straight game. . Koloko had four blocks in the first quarter, one more than his previous single game high. . VanVleet shot 7 for 7 at the free throw line.

EARLY CHALLENGE

Nurse successfully challenged a foul call against VanVleet after DeRozan drove on him with 10:22 left in the first quarter.

“I clearly saw Fred didn’t touch him,” Nurse said. “I didn’t want him to get in early foul trouble.”

UP NEXT

Bulls: Host Toronto Monday night.

Raptors: Visit Chicago Monday night.

BANE’S 28, MORANT’S GOOD FINISH LEAD GRIZZLIES PAST WIZARDS

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) Desmond Bane scored 28 points, Ja Morant added 23 points, nine rebounds and six assists, and the Memphis Grizzlies held on for a 103-97 victory over the Washington Wizards on Sunday.

After Washington rallied in the third quarter, the teams exchanged leads early in the fourth. Memphis went on a 9-0 run, with Morant scoring six, and the Grizzlies held on for their third straight win.

“Outside of the third quarter, I thought our offense really impacted our defense,” Memphis coach Taylor Jenkins said. “In the third quarter, we just got stagnant. Some missed shots that turned into transition for them.”

The Wizards were without leading scorer Bradley Beal, who was in the league’s health and safety protocols, eliminating 21.6 points and 5.7 assists from the Washington lineup.

Bane shot 9 for 16 from the field, while Morant made only nine of 27 shots. Brandon Clarke scored 16 points on 7-of-8 shooting.

Monte Morris had 18 points for the Wizards, while Rui Hachimura scored 15 and keyed a third-quarter Washington rally. Kyle Kuzma and Will Barton finished with 12 points apiece.

“I do like our competitive spirit,” Wizards coach Wes Unseld Jr. said. “You win three of four quarters. You played relatively well. You had great looks down the stretch that would have opened the game a little bit for us.”

The Wizards were coming off a 42-point loss to Brooklyn on Friday with Beal playing, while Memphis beat Charlotte by 31 points. But the Grizzlies offense was stagnant to open the game Sunday, allowing the Wizards an early lead.

Memphis rebounded to outscore Washington 33-18 in the second quarter, helped by Wizards center Kristaps Porzingis (10 points) sitting with two fouls through the first part of the period.

But, unlike the Brooklyn loss, when the Nets took control of the game in the second half, Washington showed new life after halftime, erasing most of a 23-point Memphis lead. Hachimura would hit all four of his shots in the third to tighten the game before the Grizzlies regained control in the fourth.

“We’ve got pride in everything,” Morris said, reflecting on the Brooklyn loss. “We didn’t want the same result to happen. .We spoke about it prior to going out for the second half, knowing that is kind of where we let the (Brooklyn) game get away from us.”

But the closing minutes may be an example of the Grizzlies’ maturity, according to Bane. He noted that in the past, the result could have been different after the Wizards surged into the lead.

“I think a younger Grizzlies team might have found a way to lose that game,” Bane said. “Not able to close it. We’re obviously young, but a lot of our guys that were on the floor towards the end of the game played together before and have experience, so we were able to weather the storm.”

TIP-INS:

Wizards: With Beal out, Corey Kispert started at guard with Morris. It was Kispert’s first start of the season after missing the early portion with a left ankle sprain. Kispert finished with six points and three assists. . Kuzma grabbed his 1,800th career defensive rebound midway through the second quarter. .Two-way player Jordan Goodwin had nine points, eight rebounds and five assists in 26 minutes.

Grizzlies: C Steven Adams left the game early in the third quarter after an ankle injury but returned in the fourth quarter. . Clarke passed JaMychal Green for 23rd spot on the franchise’s made shots list with 878.

CLARKE’S MISS

Clarke’s lone miss may have been on his easiest shot, a lob that clanked off the back of the rim as he tried to finish the dunk. “I think it was because I had my pinkie taped,” Clarke said of the bandage on a finger he tweaked in the two-game series with Utah last week. “I’m going to blame it on my pinkie because I always make that. I was looking at the rim, and it didn’t want to go in.”

UP NEXT:

Wizards: Play at Charlotte on Monday.

Grizzlies: Wrap up a three-game homestand against the Boston Celtics on Monday.

CLARKSON, SEXTON LEAD SURGING JAZZ PAST CLIPPERS, 110-102

LOS ANGELES (AP) Jordan Clarkson scored 23 points, reserve Collin Sexton added 22 and the Utah Jazz beat the Los Angeles Clippers 110-102 on Sunday night.

The Jazz rallied after blowing a 10-point lead in the first half and trailing by six in the third quarter.

Paul George scored 34 points, the third time in four games that he topped 30, but Los Angeles had its three-game winning streak snapped. George missed shots down the stretch after the Jazz erased the Clippers’ four-point lead.

Marcus Morris added 18 points for the Clippers. Kawhi Leonard missed his eighth game while dealing with knee stiffness.

Down by four in the fourth, the Jazz scored nine in a row, capped by Malik Beasley’s 3-pointer to take the lead for good. It was part of a 14-2 run that extended Utah’s lead to 106-98. Sexton had seven points in the spurt.

The Clippers pulled within four on a dunk and inside basket by Ivica Zubac before Sexton dunked with 54 seconds left.

Sexton fed Lauri Markkanen for an inside basket in the closing seconds. Markkanen finished with 18 points and nine rebounds.

Clarkson’s 3-pointer early in the fourth tied it at 87-all.

The Clippers scored the first seven points of the third to pull into a 63-all tie. They closed within two five times before John Wall’s steal and basket forced an 81-all tie.

Wall followed with a dunk that put the Clippers ahead for the first time since the first quarter.

The Jazz took an 84-83 led on Clarkson’s 3-pointer before Wall scored again, sending the Clippers into the fourth leading by one point.

George’s 3 drew the Clippers within one before the Jazz closed on a 13-7 run to go into halftime leading 63-56. Markkanen scored 11 of Utah’s points in the spurt when he made all five of his free-throw attempts.

TIP-INS

Jazz: Markkanen didn’t miss a shot in the first half. He hit all four of his field goal attempts and made his only 3-point try in addition to all five free-throw attempts for 14 points. … Jarrod Vanderbilt sat out with right adductor soreness.

Clippers: Robert Covington returned after missing four games while in the league’s health and safety protocols. … Luke Kennard sat out with chest discomfort. He will undergo further testing Monday.

UP NEXT

Jazz: Host the Lakers on Monday to conclude a back-to-back. Utah is 4-0 at home.

Clippers: Host Cleveland on Monday in the second game of a back-to-back.

KUBALIK’S OVERTIME GOAL LIFTS RED WINGS PAST RANGERS 3-2

NEW YORK (AP) Dominik Kubalik scored a power-play goal 2:43 into overtime and the Detroit Red Wings rallied to beat the New York Rangers 3-2 on Sunday.

Matt Luff and Pius Suter scored in the second period as Detroit came back after trailing 2-0 in the first period. Moritz Seider had two assists and Alex Nedeljkovic stopped 27 shots in the Red Wings’ third straight win.

“I feel good about where my game is at,” Nedeljkovic said. “When you beat good teams, it’s huge.”

Kaapo Kakko and Mika Zibanejad scored in the first to give the Rangers the lead. Jaroslav Halak had 33 saves while falling to 0-3-1 in four starts this season.

“I like that we didn’t get away from our game despite being down 2-0 after the first,? Red Wings coach Derek Lalonde said. “We showed some maturity in not forcing it, not chasing it … Guys are getting rewarded.”

In the extra period, the Red Wings went on the power play when Rangers defenseman K’Andre Miller was called for holding the stick at 1:44. Kubalik took advantage nearly a minute later, scoring his sixth goal of the season. He’s tied with Dylan Larkin for the team lead with 15 points.

“We deserved this. We earned it,” said Kubalik, who joined the Red Wings as a free agent after three seasons with Chicago. “We’re happy to get the win … Every day at practice I feel more and more comfortable. I’m just happy.”

Halak smashed and broke his stick against the post to his left in frustration after the winning goal.

The 37-year-old had made a stick save on Kubalik in alone on left wing with four minutes left in the third, and then denied Filip Hronek’s point-blank in the final minute of regulation to force overtime.

“It’s tough to get a PK overtime. It’s 4-on-3 and they have their best players out there,” Halak said. “They have skill and can make plays. That’s what happened.”

Kakko opened the scoring at 9:14 of the first, whipping the puck past Nedeljkovic for his third of the season and his first since Oct. 17. Chris Kreider got his 200th career assist on the play, becoming the 16th player from the 2009 draft class to reach that milestone.

Zibanejad made it 2-0 on the power-play with 3:04 left, on a one-timer off a cross-ice pass from Artemi Panarin past Nedeljkovic from his customary spot in the left circle. Panarin, who leads the Rangers with 17 points, has points in seven of his last eight games. Zibanejad has points in five straight games.

Rangers captain Jacob Trouba expressed frustration with his team’s inability to sustain pressure on Detroit after a strong first period.

“We have to find a way to play a full game,” Trouba said. “You can’t play two periods in this league.”

Luff got the Red Wings on the scoreboard at 2:56 of the second as he tipped Ben Chiarot’s shot past Halak.

Suter tied it at 8:37, taking advantage of lax defense by the Rangers in front of Halak. He scored his third from in front.

Rangers coach Gerard Gallant shuffled lines in the third after his team’s subpar performance in the second.

“Just trying to shake things up a little bit,? Gallant said. “Seeing if we can wake a few guys up.”

Halak made eight stops in the third and four in overtime before Kubalik’s winner.

“He gave us a chance to win, we couldn’t take advantage of it,” Zibanejad said. “It’s disappointing.”

WELCOME BACK

Former Rangers forward Andrew Copp returned to Madison Square Garden for the first time since signing with a five-year contract with Detroit in the offseason . He had eight goals and 18 points in 16 games with New York after he was acquired from Winnipeg last March, then added six goals and eight assists in 20 playoff contests during the Rangers’ run to the 2022 Eastern Conference finals.

LINEUPS

Rangers forward Filip Chytil returned after missing six games with a suspected concussion.

UP NEXT

Red Wings: Host Montreal on Tuesday night.

Rangers: Host the New York Islanders on Tuesday night.

TAVARES SCORES IN 3RD, MAPLE LEAFS BEAT HURRICANES 3-1

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) John Tavares scored the tiebreaking goal in the third period and the Toronto Maple Leafs beat the Carolina Hurricanes 3-1 Sunday for their first three-game winning streak of the season.

Calle Jarnkrok and William Nylander also scored to help Toronto win for the second time in seven road games. Erik Kallgren had 29 saves to get his first victory of the season.

“I’m just happy about the win,” Kallgren said. “We played so solid defensively. Games like this make it very, very easy for me.”

The outcome added to a rewarding two-day stretch for the Maple Leafs, who beat the Boston Bruins on Saturday night.

“We talked about it being a big weekend for us, especially with back-to-backs against two great teams,” Maple Leafs right forward Mitch Marner said.

Stefan Noesen scored and Frederik Andersen had 18 saves for Carolina, which snapped a four-game winning streak.

“We had our chances and at the end of the day we have to play a full 60,” Hurricanes defenseman Jaccob Slavin said.

Tavares skated down the slot, took a pass from Marner and scored at 8:24 of the third on the Maple Leafs’ first shot of the period for a 2-1 lead. Tavares has a team-high eight goals.

“I just tried to put it in a spot where he could just one-touch it in,” Marner said.

Nylander added his fifth with 3:35 remaining to seal the win.

The Maple Leafs won despite Auston Matthews failing to register a shot on goal for the first time this season. He had at least three shots in every previous game and averaged 5.1 per game.

“We have a deep team here,” Marner said. “It’s great to see all four lines contributing.”

The Maple Leafs were limited to a season-low 21 shots on goal.

“You make one little mistake and they’re going to make you pay,” Hurricanes captain Jordan Staal said. “And that was it.”

The Hurricanes had scored at least two goals in each game this season.

“I didn’t think we were great, but we certainly weren’t poor,” Carolina coach Rod Brind’Amour said. “We need to capitalize on a couple of chances we had.”

Noesen’s power-play goal at 8:11 of the first period opened the scoring. It was his second of the season and second in four games.

“We were in a good spot there,” Brind’Amour said. “We just didn’t lay the hammer down there and keep going.”

Jarnkrok tied it with 1:30 to play in the second when he scored third goal of the season.

SHOWING THE POWER

The Hurricanes have at least one power-play goal in four consecutive games. They never reached that mark last season, with three-game streaks five times.

SAMSONOV OUT

Maple Leafs goalie Ilya Samsonov went on injured reserve Sunday, a day after sustaining a knee injury vs. Boston.

In his place, Keith Petruzzelli was summoned from Toronto of the AHL for his first NHL assignment to serve as the backup. He was 6-0-0 with the Marlies.

“It has been a little crazy,” Petruzzelli said. “Not much sleep, a lot of travel and a lot of excitement.”

UP NEXT

Maple Leafs: Host Vegas on Tuesday night.

Hurricanes: At Florida on Wednesday night.

REINHART SCORES 2, PANTHERS END TRIP WITH 5-3 WIN OVER DUCKS

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) Sam Reinhart was able to celebrate his 27th birthday with two goals and hopefully a bit of confidence.

The Florida forward scored twice in the third period as the Panthers finished off a four-game road trip with a 5-3 victory over the Anaheim Ducks on Sunday night.

“We had a good first and third. It was nice to salvage the road trip and carry some momentum back home,” Reinhart said.

Panthers coach Paul Maurice said pairing Reinhart with Anton Lundell on the second line definitely helped Reinhart find the net for the first time this season.

Maurice had to juggle all four of his forward lines after Matthew Tkachuk was suspended two-games for high-sticking Kings goalie Jonathan Quick on Saturday night in Los Angeles.

“Him and Lundell are back together and they know how to play off each other,” Maurice said. “Sam’s had so many chances to score and it just didn’t seem to go for him. His game has been right.”

The game was tied 2-2 after two periods before the Panthers took control. Reinhart put Florida in front when he chipped in a loose puck on a scramble in front of the net at 2:55 for his first goal of the season.

Carter Verhaeghe scored for the third straight game, Brandon Montour had a goal and three assists, and Sam Bennett also scored for the Panthers, who finished 2-2 on their four-game trip. Lundell had two assists and Spencer Knight stopped 32 shots to improve to 4-1.

Ryan Strome had a goal and an assist, and Adam Henrique and Isac Lundestrom also scored for Anaheim, which had won three of its last four coming in. John Gibson made 41 saves.

Bennett scored off a centering pass from Eetu Luostarinen at 8:10 to push the lead to 4-2.

Lundestrom got the Ducks within one on a penalty shot while they were short-handed with 1:14 remaining. Reinhart then had an empty-net goal with 1 second left.

Verhaeghe scored his team-leading eighth goal and extended his scoring streak to three straight games at 11:31 of the first when he redirected Montour’s shot past Gibson on the power play. Montour made it 2-0 at 2:51 of the second when he kept the puck in the offensive zone and then fired a wrist shot from the point.

The Ducks evened it with two goals in a 27-second span in the second. Henrique deflected Strome’s shot from the point that went over Knight’s glove at the 8-minute mark. Strome then knocked in a loose puck in front of the net at 8:27 to tie it 2-2.

“The second period is a period that we’re very capable of. That’s how we have to play and we show spurts of it which shows that you can do it,” Anaheim coach Dallas Eakins said. “The challenge is to choose to do it each and every shift, every period. That’s what we have to do.”

STREAKING

Anaheim’s Troy Terry and John Klingberg each had an assist to extend their points streaks. Terry has eight points (one goal, seven assists) in the last five games while Klingberg has five assists in the last four.

SHUFFLING

Besides pairing Lundell and Reinhart together, Maurice also liked the pairing of Luostarinen on the third line.

“When Matthew comes back I’ve got a different set of lines than I did a day ago. This was a great learning experience for our team to find something new,” Maurice said.

UP NEXT

Panthers: Host Carolina on Wednesday night.

Ducks: Host Minnesota on Wednesday night.

JOEY LOGANO WINS AT PHOENIX TO EARN 2ND NASCAR CHAMPIONSHIP

AVONDALE, Ariz. (AP) Penske Perfect.

From the first NASCAR race with the new Next Gen car, the Daytona 500, the IndyCar championship and now the NASCAR Cup title, it’s been about as close to a perfect season as possible for Roger Penske.

Joey Logano won his second NASCAR championship on Sunday with a victory in the winner-take-all finale at Phoenix Raceway – a win that gave Penske the Cup title and IndyCar title in the same season for the first time in 31 attempts.

“It’s about time,” Penske said. “Joey did a great job, and for us to have two championships in the same year, that’s what we’re here for. That’s the goal we have every year. I think we’ve been close, but we got it this year.”

It was the fourth win of the season for Logano, who opened the year with a January win in an exhibition race at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in the debut of the Next Gen car. Less than a month later, rookie teammate Austin Cindric won the Daytona 500 on Penske’s 85th birthday.

Will Power added the IndyCar championship to the Team Penske trophy case in September and Logano’s dominating run Sunday closed out the banner year for the organization.

“I knew going into this thing that we’re going to win the championship. I told the guys we were the favorite from Daytona, and we truly believed it, and that’s the difference,” Logano said. “I had a good team with a bunch of confidence, and we had all the reason in the world to be confident. I’ve never been truly this ready for a championship race, and yeah, we did it, man. I can’t believe it.”

Logano was met after the win by his wife and 4-year-old son, Hudson, the oldest of his three children and only one to make the trip to Phoenix. Logano took Hudson by the hand and ran up the banking to collect the checkered flag.

His son skipped back down the track, waving the flag and holding his champion father’s hand. Logano had promised Hudson he’d win the championship.

“We’ve had so many conversations over the last couple weeks before bedtime. First was `Daddy is going to get a pole, and he’s going to meet me out here and we’re going to win the race,’ and I couldn’t be a liar to my son,” Logano said.

Logano then drove Hudson inside the No. 22 Ford to the championship stage.

“I always wanted to do that with Hudson. He’s such a little car guy,” Logano said.

Logano at 32 was the oldest driver in the championship four, as well as the only one who is married with children. The Next Gen equaled the competition this season and the Cup Series celebrated 19 different winners, including five first-timers and two drivers making their first appearance in the championship race.

Even with the parity, Logano never doubted this would be his season.

“Getting the bookends, the first and the last race, means a lot,” Logano said. “It’s just a really special year for us with our third baby, and 22 in ’22, I told you so!”

It is the third Cup championship for Penske, who won with Brad Keselowski in 2012 and Logano’s first title in 2018. Logano joined Kyle Busch as the only active drivers with multiple Cup titles.

Logano won the pole and was never really challenged on Sunday as his Ford led 186 of the 312 laps, and he was not the highest running title contender for only one lap. He’s the first Ford driver to win two Cup titles since David Pearson in 1968 and 1969.

It is the second Cup championship for crew chief Paul Wolfe, who won with Keselowski in 2012 and admitted to texting rival Ford crew chief Rodney Childers for strategy advice during the race.

“I was texting him throughout the race, `What are you guys thinking? What would you do?'” Wolfe said. “I have thoughts, but all the other crew chiefs might think something different. It’s good to have another perspective. There’s guys in the garage you can trust and there’s guys you can’t. I think Rodney and I have a great relationship, and I appreciate that.”

Ross Chastain finished third in his championship race debut, and Christopher Bell was 10th in his debut. Bell raced hours after Joe Gibbs Racing learned vice chairman Coy Gibbs, son of the Hall of Fame team owner, died in his sleep at 49.

“You wake up this morning and you’re racing for a championship, you’re happy, you’re elated, and then your world comes crashing down,” Bell said. “Whenever you get news like that, it definitely puts it in perspective that there’s much more to this outside of racing.”

Chase Elliott was spun by Chastain early in the final stage, his Chevrolet hit the wall and he was immediately out of contention. It snapped Hendrick Motorsports streak of two consecutive Cup titles.

“Just disappointed, obviously, ended our day and ended our chance at a win or a championship. Just disappointing,” Elliott said.

NASCAR’s most popular driver won a career-high five races this year and the regular-season championship, but Elliott lost his shot at a second championship when he cut across the front of Chastain and Chastain refused to lift. The contact sent Elliott spinning into the wall, he dropped to 30th and down a lap during the repairs, and finished 28th.

“I feel like it was just hard racing and I had position,” Chastain said. “I got to the left of (Elliott) and saw an erratic move that he made to turn left to cover it, but I was already there. It’s not how I want to race them or those guys.”

Logano, who started his career with JGR and spent five seasons there before he was fired after the 2012 season, gave his regards to the Gibbs family after the win.

“I don’t know what to think, but obviously my condolences go to the Gibbs family,” Logano said. “But just an incredible day for us, and kind of mixed emotions at the moment.”

TOP INDIANA RELEASES/HEADLINES

PATS GET 9 SACKS IN DOMINANT 26-3 VICTORY OVER COLTS

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) When Patriots linebacker Matt Judon is lined up alongside Lawrence Guy, he expects good things to happen.

As teammates in Baltimore early in their careers, they often took turns clearing paths for one another to get the quarterback.

“When I see him in the gap, I know I can wrap around because I know he’s got my back,” Judon said.

Reunited in New England, Judon was reminded on Sunday just how devastating of duo they can be together.

Judon had three of the Patriots’ nine sacks, Mac Jones had a touchdown pass, and Nick Folk added four field goals to help New England beat the Indianapolis Colts 26-3.

The win moves the Patriots (5-4) above .500 for the first time this season as they head into their bye week.

Josh Uche also had three sacks, leading a defense that held Indianapolis to 121 yards and 0 of 14 on third down.

“My teammates put me in great situations to execute,” Judon said. “I’m just willing to do whatever I need to do for our defense to have success. Whatever that is, however it looks, and however I need to play I’m willing to do it. Today it was just one of those games.”

Jonathan Jones returned an interception 17 yards for a touchdown to finish the scoring.

Jones was 20 of 30 for 147 yards.

“We got pressure on early downs and created some long-yardage situations,” Patriots coach Bill Belichick said. “Anytime you have good pass rush, you have good coverage. And anytime you have good coverage, you have good pass rush.”

The Colts (3-5-1) have lost three straight and have yet to earn a win since benching quarterback Matt Ryan in favor of second-year player Sam Ehlinger.

Under pressure throughout the game, Ehlinger finished 15 of 29 for 103 yards and the late interception that was returned for a touchdown. It was the fourth time this season the Colts have allowed five or more sacks.

“That’s an offense that’s unacceptable,” Ehlinger said. “Our defense kept us in the game. And we didn’t do anything out there to help them out. They were playing their tails off and couldn’t get anything going in every phase.”

The Colts had trouble sustaining drives without running back Jonathan Taylor, who was out with the ankle injury he suffered in last week’s loss to Washington.

Zack Moss was acquired in a trade with Buffalo last week to provide some help, but he was inactive after just a few days of practice. Deon Jackson, who began the season as the team’s third string running back, made just his second career start and managed only 23 yards on 11 carries.

New England wasn’t great offensively, but took advantage of some decent early field position to move the ball enough to set up Folk for two first-half field goals of 49 yards and 43 yards.

The special teams also did their part with Jonathan Jones blocking Matt Haack’s punt on Indy’s fifth drive and recovering at the Colts 2.

Mac Jones tossed a 3-yard TD to Rhamondre Stevenson two plays later to put New England in front 13-0.

“Everybody got in on the fun,” Judon said.

New England’s defense did the rest.

Indianapolis entered Sunday short-handed after trudging through another week of adjustments offensively following the firing of offensive coordinator Marcus Brady. It didn’t seem to help Ehlinger, who lost in his starting debut last week.

Ehlinger didn’t complete a pass until midway through the second quarter and he was sacked five times in the first half.

Judon beat right guard Matt Pryor for two of them, prompting the Colts to replace Pryor with Will Fries on their third drive.

It did little to jumpstart things, with Indy gaining just 64 yards on 30 plays in the half. The Colts had a chance to put points on the board just before halftime, but Chase McLaughlin’s 39-yard field-goal try missed wide left.

DOMINANCE OF YOUNG QBS

Ehlinger became the latest quarterback to leave Foxborough with a loss.

Since 2003, rookie and second-year quarterbacks have a 4-43 record in visits to Gillette Stadium.

“When you’re playing a young quarterback if you can make it tough like we did today … that pressure – he felt that early in the game,” Patriots safety Devin McCourty said.

INJURIES

Colts: Jackson left in the third quarter with a leg injury but was able to return. … TE Jelani Woods left in the fourth quarter with a shoulder injury.

UP NEXT

Colts: at Raiders next Sunday.

Patriots: host New York Jets on Nov. 20.

INDIANA HOOSIERS BASKETBALL PREVIEW

(THE ALMANAC)

KEY DEPARTURES PARKER STEWART (6.2 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 1.0 apg) ROB PHINISEE (4.5 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 1.7 apg)

KEY NEWCOMERS JALEN HOOD-SCHIFINO (freshman, Montverde Aca.) MALIK RENEAU (freshman, Montverde Academy) KALEB BANKS (freshman, Fayette County HS) CJ GUNN (freshman, Lawrence North HS)

It all changed quickly for Mike Woodson and the Indiana Hoosiers. In his first season at his alma mater, his most important task was to retain Trayce Jackson-Davis — and he did just that. But even with TJD, the Hoosiers were squarely on the bubble entering the Big Ten Tournament following a 9-11 league performance. Then came a win over Michigan and the huge upset over Illinois to get Indiana back in the Big Dance for the first time since 2016. “We had our ups and downs,” Woodson said. “But for the most part, you know, we made the late run that we needed to make to break that streak of not being in tournament play, and we were able to get in tournament play.” Frankly, Indiana didn’t lose much from last season — and that’s why the expectations are so high for 2022-23, despite being a Big Ten tourney loss away from playing in the NIT. The Hoosiers lost one starter, Parker Stewart, but the veteran wing only averaged 6.2 points per game. The other departures were Rob Phinisee (4.5 ppg), Khristian Lander (2.9 ppg) and Michael Durr (1.5 ppg), all of whom transferred to other programs in search of expanded roles. Everyone else returned, and Woodson and his staff also brought in a pair of top[1]30 freshmen. There is so shortage of excitement in Bloomington these days.

ROAD TO SUCCESS

Jackson-Davis was extremely close to leaving after the season. The 6-9 forward was invited to the NBA Draft combine but was then hit with COVID and wasn’t able to attend. Ultimately, he withdrew from the process and decided to return for his senior season, giving the Hoosiers their star — and one of the top players in America — one last go-round in Bloomington. TJD averaged 18.3 points and 8.1 rebounds last season and is an experienced big man who produces nearly every single game. He can score on the block and is a force on the glass. The hope is that he can step out and keep defenses honest in the mid-range this season. “I think he improved in a lot of areas last season, but he’s got to make a major jump and we’ve got to ride him pretty much like we did last year,” Woodson said. “But I think the supporting cast around him will be a lot better.” One familiar face will be TJD’s running mate up front: fifth-year 6-8 forward Race Thompson. The pair are similar in some ways as neither are guys who have been able to space the court, but they are hard-working big men who get a lot done in and around the paint. “I don’t think we do half the things we did last year without Race,” Woodson said. “He does all the intangible things to help you win.” Xavier Johnson was inconsistent at times last season, but reached double figures as a scorer in 11 straight games to end the year. More importantly, the 6-3 point guard who transferred in from Pittsburgh was able to also balance scoring with setting up teammates. In the final half-dozen games of the season, Johnson averaged 7.7 assists to only 2.8 turnovers per game. “He was playing his best basketball down the stretch for us,” Woodson said, “and where he is today, I see a major, major jump.” Miller Kopp is back after starting all 35 games last season, but he’ll have to fight — and make shots — to retain his starting spot this year. The 6-7 senior forward only averaged 6.0 points per game and made 39-of-108 (36 percent) from deep a year ago. Look for versatile sophomore Tamar Bates to challenge Kopp for the starting spot. The 6-5, 190-pound sophomore averaged 3.9 points per contest and is a much better shooter than his 30 percent shooting from long distance would indicate. Whoever spaces the floor better may have the edge to start. Look for freshman guard Jalen Hood-Schifino to earn the final starting spot. Hood-Schifino is a 6-6, 215-pound guard from Pittsburgh who went to Montverde Academy. He has the size and passing ability to be able to mesh well with Johnson in the backcourt. The question sur[1]rounding Hood-Schifino is whether he can be a reliable shooter from deep. Woodson also brings back two more key reserves from last season in juniors Trey Galloway and Jordan Geronimo. The 6-4 Galloway has averaged about 20 minutes a game coming off the bench each of his first two seasons and gives the Hoosiers a versatile wing who does a little bit of everything. The 6-6, 220-pound Geronimo (4.4 ppg) got about a dozen minutes off the bench last year, but showed flashes — including a 15-point, seven-rebound performance in the win over Wyoming in the NCAA Tournament. Woodson’s recruiting class was led by Montverde teammates and top-30 players Hood-Schifino and Malik Reneau. Reneau is a skilled 6-9 forward who can give Woodson a different look up front than Jackson-Davis and Thompson. They are joined by top 100 freshman Kaleb Banks and wing CJ Gunn in the class. Banks is a 6-8 big, athletic wing who can shoot it and has a high ceiling. It’ll be interesting to see how much he can contribute this season. Gunn is a 6-6 wing who can score off the bounce and also while coming off screens. Look for 6-10 sophomore big man Logan Duncomb and 6-5 junior Anthony Leal, a local kid, to give the Hoosiers depth.

POTENTIAL POTHOLES

This is an Indiana team that has a couple of traditional big men in TJD and Thompson. Jackson-Davis hasn’t made a single 3-pointer in three seasons in college while Thompson has made a total of 21 in four years with the Hoosiers. Stewart, who transferred back to UT Martin, only averaged 6.2 points per game, but he did lead Indiana with 53 made 3-pointers, and he shot 39 percent from deep. Johnson wasn’t much of a long-range shooter in his three years at Pittsburgh. Despite an unorthodox shot, he con[1]verted 38 percent of his 3-pointers last season. Kopp is also a deep threat, but he has flickered from beyond the arc since shooting 39.6 percent at Northwestern in 2019- 20. Hood-Schifino, meanwhile, is not known for his shooting. Indiana could again struggle to space the floor.

THE X-FACTOR

When it comes to finding shooters, Kopp and Bates stand out as possible solutions. Kopp came into college with the rep of being a knock-down shooter. He’s had his moments, but has only shot better than 36 percent from 3 one season in his career — when he made 65 triples during his sophomore campaign at Northwestern. Bates has been shooting it extremely well this past offseason after struggling as a freshman. The hope is that with more reps, Bates can shoot in the high 30s. Indiana will need one of these two to emerge as legit threats from beyond the arc. Otherwise, it’ll put too much pressure on Johnson to have to make them. While he did make enough a year ago, that’s not the strength of his game.

THE OUTLOOK

Indiana has plenty of momentum after the late surge that got the Hoosiers into the NCAA Tournament. It’ll be interesting, though, to see if they can pick up where they left off or if they look more like the squad that was up and down throughout much of the regular season. Jackson-Davis and Thompson are known quantities, and Johnson was tremendous down the stretch last season. Woodson has brought in a couple of talented freshmen in Hood-Schifino and Reneau, and there’s also plenty of quality depth with Bates, Galloway and Geronimo. After getting into the Big Dance last season, now the Hoosiers will be picked by many to win the Big Ten this year. “The only thing I’m pushing is, first things first, trying to win a Big Ten title next season. Once we get into tournament play, if we are fortunate enough to make that happen, then we’ll go from there,” Woodson said. Then the goal is to take the next step: getting to the second weekend in the NCAA Tournament.

INDIANA BASKETBALL GAME NOTES – GAME 1: VS. MOREHEAD STATE

Opening Tip

• Indiana University opens its 123rd season of competition in men’s basketball with a matchup against Morehead State at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall. Tip is scheduled for 7 p.m. EDT on Nov. 7.

• The Eagles finished 23-11 and third in the Ohio Valley Conference a season ago under seventh-year head coach Preston Spradlin.

Game Information

Date: Nov. 7, 2022 • 7 PM ET

Venue: Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall (17,222) • Bloomington, Ind.

TV: BTN+ (Griffin Epstein, Jack Edwards, Audrey Hausberger)

Radio: IU Radio Network (Don Fischer, Errek Suhr, John Herrick)

Series History: Indiana leads, 5-0

Last Meeting: IU 92, MSU 59 on Dec. 5, 2015 in Bloomington

Series History

• The two programs have met five previous times on the hardwood with Indiana holding a 5-0 advantage. All five matchups have taken place in Bloomington.

• Indiana earned a 92-59 triumph over Morehead State the last time the two sides met on Dec. 5, 2015. Five Hoosiers scored in double figures during the game, led by Troy Williams (16). Kevin “Yogi” Ferrell (15), James Blackmon, Jr. (15), Thomas Bryant (14), and Max Bielfeldt (12) carried the Hoosiers to the victory.

• The Hoosiers hold an all-time record of 25-0 against teams currently residing in the Ohio Valley Conference.

Last Time Out

• Five Hoosiers tallied 10-plus points in Indiana’s 104-59 exhibition win over Saint Francis on Thursday evening. Senior forward Trayce Jackson-Davis scored a team-best 19 points to go alone with nine rebounds.

• The freshman duo of forward Malik Reneau and guard Jalen Hood-Schifino each scored 15 points, while Reneau recorded eight rebounds and Hood-Schifino dished out a team-high five assists.

• Off the bench, sophomore guard Tamar Bates and junior forward Jordan Geronimo each tallied 10 points.

• Indiana swatted away 12 Saint Francis shots in the exhibition finale on Thursday night, the most since denying Nebraska 12 times in the 2020 Big Ten Tournament.

Returning Production

• To go along with Jackson-Davis, Indiana returns four starters and nine total scholarship letterwinners. Fifth-year senior guard Xavier Johnson was named All-Big Ten Honorable Mention after putting up 12.1 points, 5.1 assists, and 3.8 rebounds per game. Fifth-year senior forward Miller Kopp tallied 6.0 points per game on 36.1% shooting from the 3-point line. Sixth-year senior forward Race Thompson finished second on the team in rebounding (7.5) and scored 11.1 points per game.

• Junior guard Trey Galloway was limited to 20 games with three starts and compiled 5.5 points and 1.7 rebounds per game. Geronimo played in 34 contests off the bench a season ago and averaged 4.4 points and 3.6 rebounds per game. Junior guard Anthony Leal started twice across 17 appearances and averaged 1.9 points per game.

• Bates appeared in 32 games and averaged 3.9 points and 1.3 rebounds per contest. Sophomore center Logan Duncomb saw game action in nine contests.

• Non-scholarship players Michael Shipp, Nathan Childress, and Shaan Burke return to the Hoosiers, while Hogan Orbaugh joined the team ahead of the 2022-23 season.

Highly-Touted Freshman Class

• Five-stars Hood-Schifino and Reneau, four-star-forward Kaleb Banks and Indiana All-Star guard CJ Gunn committed to the Hoosiers to give Indiana the fifth-ranked recruiting class in the country according to 247Sports, eighth by ESPN.com and 13th by Rivals.

• Hood-Schifino and Reneau helped lead Montverde Academy to back-to back GEICO High School national championships.

• Banks was the Georgia Class 4A Player of the Year and a 2,000-point scorer. Gunn is the all-time leader in points per game average at Lawrence North High School in Indianapolis.

LATE RALLY NOT ENOUGH AS INDIANA FALLS TO NO. 3 WISCONSIN 3-1

MADISON, Wisc.  –  An outstanding effort from the Indiana Volleyball team (13-13, 6-8) saw the Hoosiers force a fourth set and nearly send it to a fifth before falling to No. 3 Wisconsin 3-1 on Sunday afternoon.

IU took a commanding 21-13 lead in the fourth set after winning a 25-23 deuce set in the third, but the defending national champions chipped away at the lead.

Wisconsin closed down the fourth set on a 4-0 run with a double block to end Sunday’s contest inside UW Fieldhouse as the Hoosiers fell 18-25, 17-25, 25-23, 24-26.

Camryn Haworth’s outstanding stat line (48 assists, 8 digs, 6 aces) wasn’t enough to overturn the 2-0 deficit in Madison. The Badgers held on to hit .252 for the match.

The Hoosiers continue a gauntlet of a stretch next weekend with a visit from No. 15 Penn State and a trip to No. 9 Minnesota.

SET 1 (Wisconsin 25, Indiana 18)

• Back-to-back kills from Morgan Geddes dug into the Wisconsin lead, bringing the Hoosiers within two points at 14-16.

• Kills from Kaley Rammelsberg and Savannah Kjolhede served as a late attempt to bring life back into the first set, but Wisconsin won the opening frame 25-18.

SET 2 (Wisconsin 25, Indiana 17)

• The Hoosiers jumped out to a 3-0 lead with Kaley Rammelsberg earning a kill on the overpass.

• Mady Saris provided a service ace to bring the Hoosiers with two points at 9-11.

• IU strung together four-straight points including a pair of Wisconsin attacking errors to draw within 16-23 and force a Badger timeout.

• Wisconsin would hang on to win the second set 25-17.

SET 3 (Indiana 25, Wisconsin 23)

• Kenzie Daffinee served IU out to a 5-0 lead, bouncing back from a tough first two sets to collect a pair of service aces.

• The teams would exchange points before IU went on a 3-0 run to take a 24-22 lead following kills from Kaley Rammelsberg and Candela Alonso-Corcelles.

• Mady Saris provided the dagger in the third set with a kill. It was challenged and overturned in favor of the Hoosiers after a touch from Wisconsin to give IU the 25-23 win.

SET 4 (Wisconsin 26, Indiana 24)

• The Hoosiers again jumped out to an early lead, taking a 5-1 advantage following a service ace from Camryn Haworth.

• IU went on a 7-0 run after going down three points with a pair of Savannah Kjolhede kills forcing Wisconsin into a timeout.

• Camryn Haworth went on a fantastic run of serve to put the Hoosiers up 21-13 in the fourth.

• Candela Alonso-Corcelles had a much-needed kill to put IU up 22-18 after Wisconsin begain chipping away at the lead.

• The Badgers closed out the set on a 4-0 run to end the Hoosiers’ effort and win the match 3-1.

NOTABLES

• Camryn Haworth had an outstanding day with 48 assists and eight digs. She also had six service aces which matches her personal best and is tied for fourth best in a single match in program history.

• Mady Saris had her second double-double of the season with 11 kills and 12 digs.

• Morgan Geddes provided 14 kills, the sixth time in the last seven matches she’s had double-digit kills.

• The Hoosiers had 13 service aces on Sunday, the most in a single match since Aug. 25, 2007 (15) against Southern Illinois.

• Savannah Kjolhede responded from a cold stretch with nine kills and zero errors on a .643 clip.

• Kaley Rammelsberg had 10 kills, the most she’s had since returning from injury three weeks ago.

• Paula Cerame provided 19 digs, the 10th-consecutive match she’s been in double digits.

INDIANA WRESTLING IMPRESSES AT MARYVILLE OPEN

SAINT LOUIS, Mo. –––– A day after their first dual and win of the season, Indiana Wrestling competed in its first open of the year where a number of Hoosiers excelled on the mat.

The tournament featured an elite and amateur bracket for each weight class and Indiana had at least one wrestler in about every bracket. Many Hoosiers made deep runs in their respective bracket with nine wrestlers taking home first place finishes. Most of anyone who didn’t finish in first had a long run and top-four placing.

KEY MOMENTS

• The elite bracket participants of Jacob Moran (125), Henry Porter (133), Graham Rooks (149), Derek Gilcher (157), Donnell Washington (174) and Jacob Kaminski (285) plus the amateur bracket participants of Danny Sheen (149), Magnus Kuokkanen (165) and Gabe Sollars (197) won first place in their respective brackets.

• In the finals of the Elite 149, Elite 174 and Amateur 165 brackets, two Hoosiers faced off in the championship match.

• Sollars won his tournament by pinning all four opponents he faced in his bracket.

• In his semi-finals matchup, Washington pinned John Ward (Ozarks) in just 26 seconds.

• Three Hoosier freshmen went undefeated to start their collegiate career with their performance today: Magnus Kuokkanen, Danny Sheen and Jacob Kaminski.

NOTABLES

• Eight Indiana freshmen made their collegiate debuts in the Maryville Open. They were Kaminski, Sheen, Kuokkanen, Ben Phillips, Liam McDermott, Cole Rhemrev, Blaine Frazier and Mason Alley.

• As a team, Indiana had a combined 18 wins by fall for the tournament.

• Including matches from the SIUE dual on Friday, Indiana has nine wrestlers who are undefeated after this opening weekend.

• Washington’s path to being the 174 lbs. champion featured all bonus point victories with one pin, one tech fall and one win by major decision.

UP NEXT

• Indiana Wrestling will be off for nearly two weeks until they host Princeton for their first home dual of the season. The match will be held in Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall, which will be the first time the venue has hosted wrestling competition since the 2017 Big Ten Championships.

PURDUE BASKETBALL PREVIEW

(THE ALMANAC)

KEY DEPARTURES

JADEN IVEY (17.3 ppg, 4.9 rpg, 3.1 apg)

TREVION WILLIAMS (12.0 ppg, 7.4 rpg, 3.0 apg)

SASHA STEFANOVIC (10.4 ppg, 2.5 rpg, 3.0 apg)

ERIC HUNTER (6.2 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 2.0 apg)

KEY NEWCOMERS

DAVID JENKINS JR. (transfer, Utah)

FLETCHER LOYER (freshman, Homestead HS)

BRADEN SMITH (freshman, Westfield HS)

CAMDEN HEIDE (freshman, Wasatch Academy)

WILL BERG (freshman, Sweden)

A year ago, Matt Painter and the Purdue Boilermakers were considered a legit Final Four threat, maybe even national championship material. They had a high-lottery pick in Jaden Ivey, a couple of talented bigs in Trevion Williams and Zach Edey alongside enough quality role players to make a deep tourney run. Instead, they bowed out to Cinderella Saint Peter’s in the Sweet 16. Now, Ivey and Williams are gone. So is veteran Sasha Stefanovic. The two point guards, Eric Hunter Jr. and Isaiah Thompson, both transferred out of the program. As such, it’s a completely different cast for Painter. He still has Edey back in the fold, and there are other returning players who got time a year ago: guys like Mason Gillis, who started 25 games, and Caleb Furst, who started a dozen. Ethan Morton averaged 15 minutes a game. There are also plenty of new faces. Painter and his staff brought in four freshmen, and three should be in the rotation. He brought in a key transfer in well-traveled David Jenkins Jr. (South Dakota State, UNLV, Utah), and Painter also has a couple of guys who redshirted a year ago ready to make an impact. But life without Ivey and Williams will obviously look different. Ivey was electric and could make something out of nothing. Williams could score, rebound and pass out of the post at a high level. Meanwhile, Stefanovic shot 38 percent from deep last season. How do they bounce back?

ROAD TO SUCCESS

Painter loves his frontcourt. The 7-4 Edey, who took up basketball in 2017, only logged 19 minutes a game last season because he couldn’t co-exist on the court with fellow big Williams. Now, Edey should get 30 minutes a night as long as he stays out of foul trouble. “I think he’s an All-American,” Painter said. “One of the best players in the country. And I think our four frontcourt guys are as good collectively as just about anyone’s four up front.” Furst played a lot early last season as a freshman, but then his minutes were cut as the season progressed. The 6-10 sophomore is versatile, can shoot well and should see time at both the 4 and 5 this year. Trey Kaufman-Renn redshirted last season, and the skilled 6-9 forward is another threat to step out and make shots from the perimeter. He’s added strength, so Kaufman-Renn can play both the 4 and the 5 as well. Another freshman, 7-2 Swede Will Berg, likely won’t see much time this season because of Edey, but Painter loves his upside due to his size and ability to stretch the defense. The trio of Edey, Furst and Kaufman-Renn should make Purdue difficult to defend up front. Edey is a monster, and is nearly impossible to stop when he gets the ball in the post. Both Furst and Kaufman-Renn should fare well alongside Edey because of their ability to space the floor. If teams double Edey, they can knock down open shots. If you don’t double Edey, prepare to get scored on inside. While Purdue won’t be able to replace Ivey on the perimeter, the Boilermakers do possess skill and depth at the guard and wing spots. Gillis was a key contributor a year ago, when he started 18 league games, shot a sizzling 45 percent from deep and averaged 6.6 points and 5.0 boards per game. Gillis is the ideal Painter player: he plays hard, defends, can feed Edey in the post and also makes shots. Brandon Newman averaged 8.0 points per game and shot 38 percent from 3 as a redshirt freshman two years ago, but he struggled last season. Painter is hopeful that the 6-5 junior guard can regain the form and just play his role: a shooter who defends and rebounds. Ethan Morton is ultra-versatile and has shown the ability to play and defend multiple positions, from the point to the 4-spot. Morton only averaged 2.4 points last season, but he’s able to make shots from deep, can guard and makes quality decisions with the ball in his hands. True freshman Cam Heide only played three games as a senior at Wasatch Academy due to a foot injury, but Painter expects the 6-6 wing to take on an immediate role due to his size, athleticism and ability to shoot. Redshirt freshman Brian Waddell tore his ACL and MCL last October, but the long and efficient 6-7 son of ex-Purdue grad Craig Waddell should be ready for the start of the season.

POTENTIAL POTHOLES

Who emerges as the point guards? “There’s uncertainty at the position,” Painter admitted. “But it’s not that we don’t have people who can do it. It’s just we haven’t seen it from them yet.” Purdue went after guys in the transfer portal. Nijel Pack (Miami) and Tyrese Hunter (Texas) took the NIL bags and went elsewhere. Now, Painter may have to rely on freshmen to run the team. Braden Smith is an in-state kid who is tough, can really pass and possesses all the intangibles. But he’s a freshman and is also coming off a couple of significant foot injuries. The hope is that Smith can shoulder the load. The backup plan is using the versatile junior Morton, plus Jenkins and another frosh, Fletcher Loyer, in a playmaking-by-committee strategy. Morton is a jack-of-all-trades guy while Jenkins has been a scorer his entire college career, so it may be difficult to transform his mentality at this point. Loyer is also more of a scorer than a facilitator. That means the key to the team could be the play of Smith. A year ago, the point guard position wasn’t exactly a strength, but Purdue had enough high-caliber players to make up for the deficiencies. This season, Smith and the other point guards will have shooters and Edey down low — but there isn’t a playmaker like Ivey. That’s the question besides point guard play for this group. Who steps forward and can get a bucket with the shot clock running down or with the game on the line?

THE X-FACTOR

Jenkins spent his first two seasons at South Dakota State and averaged 19.7 points as a sophomore. After sitting out a year, he put up 14.8 points in the Mountain West for UNLV before having his worst offensive campaign a year ago — just 8.5 points per game at Utah. Jenkins has shot 41 percent from downtown in his career and has been known as a scorer. The biggest question for him this season is whether he can morph into a true combo guard and fill a significant void: a veteran guard who can run the team at times. “He’s the wild card for us,” Painter said. “I don’t want to take away his ability to score, but we need someone to be able to shore up some point guard responsibilities.”

THE OUTLOOOK

It’s difficult not to have confidence that Painter will figure it out, even after losing three of his top four scorers from a team that went 29-8 overall and was ranked No. 1 in the country at one time. The Boilermakers have gone to the NCAA Tournament seven straight years, and 13 of the past 15 seasons. But it’s also tough to win without a high-level point guard or a big-time playmaker. Sure, the Boilermakers have one of the best big men in the country — but it’s not 1990, or even 2010. Bigs just don’t hold the same value anymore, especially 7-4 bigs who don’t do much damage away from the basket. The good news for Purdue is that they have some nice pieces, plenty of depth and Matt Painter. But it’s difficult to see the Boilermakers as much more than a first-weekend NCAA Tournament team unless Smith (or someone else) establishes himself as an upper-tier Big Ten point guard.

SCHERMERHORN GUIDES NO. 14 PURDUE PAST MICHIGAN, 3-1

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – The No. 14 Purdue Boilermakers secured its third consecutive win, 3-1 (25-21, 25-15, 19-25, 25-20) at Michigan, which is receiving votes in the latest poll. With the win, Purdue improves to 18-6 (9-5 Big Ten), while Michigan falls to 14-10 (5-9 Big Ten).

Senior libero Maddie Schermerhorn had a lights-out performance, posting 28 digs, a career-best (previous: 26 vs. Utah).

As a team, Purdue out-hit Michigan .275 to .213 and out-dug its opponent 55 to 45.

Meanwhile, for the second straight match, Megan Renner tied a Big Ten season-high 42 assists. The effort was backed by an errorless five kills on eight attempts (.625%), four digs and a pair of block assists.

Eva Hudson led the team with 15 kills (15-8-36), including a .338 hitting clip (nine kills) over the final two sets.

Emma Ellis closed the afternoon with 13 kills, one shy of her season-high. The senior went errorless through the first two sets before finish the match with three errors on 30 swings (ties a season-best)

The Boilermakers return home this weekend for a pair of top-15 matchups. First, Purdue will face No. 6 Ohio State on Thursday night at 7 p.m. ET on B1G+. Then on Saturday night, Purdue will take on No. 15 Penn State at 8 p.m. ET. Fans can catch the match on Big Ten Network.

BOILERS ROLL TO EXHIBITION WIN OVER PURDUE NORTHWEST

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Five Boilermakers finished in double figures as the Purdue women’s basketball team rolled to a 98-67 exhibition win on Sunday afternoon against Purdue Northwest. The Boilermakers will open the 2022-23 season Thursday night against Marshall.

Caitlyn Harper led all scorers with 22 points on 10-of-13 shooting. The Hartland, Wisc., native was one of three starters to reach double digits, joining Lasha Petree’s 14 points and 11 from Jeanae Terry. Jayla Smith and Rickie Woltman chipped in 12 and 10 points, respectively, off the bench.

Purdue shot 56.6% from the field and went 7-of-17 (41.2%) from behind the arc. 11 of the 12 active Boilermakers put their name on the scoresheet.

The Boilermakers picked up 31 points at the line on 37 attempts (83.8%). Ten different players made a trip to the line. Smith finished 6-of-6 at the stripe, while Woltman was 6-of-9. The 31 made freebies were the most by Purdue in a game since 2010.

After a slow start that saw Purdue trail 19-14 after 10 minutes, the Boilermakers quickly found their rhythm to outscore the Pride 84-48 over the final 30 minutes.

Purdue Northwest opened the day shooting an even 50% (14-28) from the field in the first half. The Boilermakers locked in for the second half to hold the pride to just 7-of-30 (23.3%) shooting.

The run started in the second as Purdue dropped 34 points on 13-of-18 shooting (72.2%). Cassidy Hardin drained a trio of 3-pointers to lead the hosts to a 48-40 lead at the break.

In the third, Purdue’s defense matched its offensive intensity. The Boilermakers outpaced the Pride 25-9 out of the break. Harper notched 10 of her points in the frame, while Purdue went 13-of-16 at the line. Defensively, the Boilermakers held Purdue Northwest to just 2-of-15 shooting in the frame and forced 10 turnovers.

The sluggish start led Purdue to 19 turnovers for the game, but only nine of those came in the final three quarters. The Pride only managed 12 points off the giveaways. The hosts flipped 17 Purdue Northwest turnovers in 21 points.

Led by Cassidy Hardin’s six, Purdue tallied a plus-15 margin (39-24) on the glass. Purdue scored 11 points on eight offensive rebounds and held the Pride off the board on six second-chance possessions.

Madison Layden dished out seven of Purdue’s 23 assists in the win, 22 of which came in the final three periods.

TRANSFERS CAUSING TROUBLE

Petree and Harper made their unofficial debuts at Mackey Arena, combining for 36 points, seven rebounds, four steals and three blocks. The duo had a combined plus-minus of 40. Harper’s inside presence led the Boilermakers to a 46-26 margin in the paint. Petree was 2-for-4 from distance and 4-for-4 at the line. Both players featured for less than 25 minutes.

QUOTE

Head coach Katie Gearlds on the defensive stand in the third quarter…

We challenged them to lock in defensively a little more. It was a little bit of first-game jitters, playing in front of a crowd for the first time. That has to be our identity. The way we locked in and guarded in the third quarter has to be our identity.

UP NEXT

The 2022-23 season starts Thursday at Mackey Arena with a 6 p.m. tip against Marshall.

BUTLERMBB OPENS SECOND EDITION OF THE THAD MATTA ERA MONDAY NIGHT AT HINKLE

The Bulldogs officially tip off the 2022-23 season and the second edition of the Thad Matta Era Monday night when the New Orleans Privateers visit Hinkle Fieldhouse.

FOX Sports’ season tips off Monday, Nov. 7, with exclusive whip-around coverage showing live look-ins of eight BIG EAST contests with limited commercials during the BIG EAST OPENING NIGHT TIP-OFF at 6:30 PM ET on FS1. All eight games are available in their entirety on the FOX Sports App and FOXsports.com.

Butler (0-0) vs. New Orleans (0-0)

Monday, Nov. 7;  6:30PM

Hinkle Fieldhouse; Indianapolis, Ind.

FOLLOW ALONG:

TV:  FS1 & FOX Sports App – Bob Brainerd & Kim Adams

Radio:  1430AM – @MarkMinner & Nick Gardner (@n_gardner)

Varsity Network Radio App

SiriusXM 382, SXM App 972

THE SERIES:

Butler Leads, 2-0

Streak: Butler, W2

At Hinkle: Butler Leads, 2-0

First Meeting: Butler, 57-44; 1/5/13

Last Meeting: Butler, 79-53; 11/9/19

• The Bulldogs have won their home opener in 23 consecutive seasons; that dates back to 1998 when Southwest Missouri State (now referred to as Missouri State) won a 72-57 decision at Hinkle Fieldhouse.

• Butler is 64-2 over its last 66 non-conference home games.

• Thad Matta returns to his alma mater as the head coach at Butler; he also led the Bulldogs as head coach during the 2000-01 season.

• Matta is a combined 70-26 in the first season at each of his previous head coaching stops (Butler in 2000-01, Xavier in 2001-02 and Ohio State in 2004-05), winning at least 20 games in each of those seasons.

• Butler went on a foreign tour to Italy and Greece August 2-12, playing four games abroad.

• After having only seven assists in Saturday’s exhibition win over Tiffin, the Bulldogs had 25 assists on their 39 made field goals Tuesday against Davenport. The 25 assists came against only 10 turnovers.

• In Tuesday’s final exhibition, Butler had 54 points in the paint, compared to just 16 for Davenport. The Bulldogs also had a 23-2 edge in fast break points.

• The Bulldogs were without Myles Wilmoth, Jalen Thomas, John-Michael Mulloy and Ali Ali against Davenport due to various injuries.

• BIG EAST coaches have voted Butler eighth in the conference’s preseason poll, while Butler junior Chuck Harris was named Preseason All-BIG EAST Honorable Mention for the second consecutive season.

• Butler’s schedule includes 20 BIG EAST conference games as the league plays a true home-and-home round robin schedule. Butler will open the Battle 4 Atlantis with Tennessee, ranked No. 11 in both the preseason AP and coaches polls. The field also includes No. 5 Kansas, No. 24/25 Dayton, and USC, which is receiving votes in both polls. Butler will host Kansas State at Hinkle Fieldhouse in the BIG EAST-Big 12 Battle, and will travel to Penn State (Gavitt Games) and California during the non-conference portion of the schedule.

• Chuck Harris led Butler in scoring as both a freshman (2020-21) and a sophomore (2021-22). He looks to become the first Bulldog to lead the team in scoring in three consecutive seasons since Kellen Dunham (2013-14, 2014-15, 2015-16).

• Butler adds four transfers for the 2022-23 season; three were members of 2022 NCAA Tournament teams (Eric Hunter Jr at Purdue, Ali Ali at Akron and Jalen Thomas at Georgia State).

• Incoming transfer Manny Bates had 147 blocks in two seasons at NC State

• Hunter was named to the 2021-22 Big Ten All-Defensive Team and shot 54 percent from three-point range in conference play

• Jalen Thomas will miss the beginning of the 2022-23 season while being treated for a pulmonary embolism

• Jayden Taylor had five games during his freshman campaign where he scored 18 or more points.

• Butler was 6-1 when Simas Lukosius scored in double figures during his freshman season; all seven of those games came against BIG EAST opponents, including Lukosius’s career-best 27 points against Xavier in the opening round of the 2022 BIG EAST Tournament.

• Harris had four games scoring 20 points or more during the 2021-22 season, including 29 vs. Xavier in the opening round of the 2022 BIG EAST Tournament.

• According to KenPom, Butler played the 12th-toughest regular season schedule in the nation during the 2021-22 season.

• Butler was not part of the 2022 and 2021 NCAA Tournaments, the first time missing consecutive NCAA Tournaments since 2005 and 2006 (the 2020 NCAA Tournament was not played due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but Butler was a consensus selection for the field among both respected bracketologists and those claiming to be respected bracketologists).

JAGUARS SLIP PAST DETROIT MERCY; ADVANCE TO #HLMSOC TOURNEY SEMIS

INDIANAPOLIS – The IUPUI men’s soccer team extended its season on Sunday (Nov. 6) with a thrilling 1-0 home win over No. 6 seed Detroit Mercy in the opening round of the 2022 Horizon League Men’s Soccer Championships, held at Michael A. Carroll Stadium. IUPUI used a late Lukas Hackaa penalty kick to outlast the Titans by a 1-0 score.

Freshman Ethan Vermillion earned the penalty kick opportunity and Hackaa delivered with his seventh score of the year in the game’s 72nd minute for the final margin. Junior goalkeeper Lucas Morefield collected four stops in earning his third shutout of the season, setting up a meeting with No. 2 Wright State in the semifinals of the Horizon League Tournament in Cleveland on Thursday, Nov. 10.

“I’m ecstatic. I’ve still got to process it – process the game – it was a mad game, very physical, not very pretty at all, but I’m really really glad we got that win and at the end of the day, that’s all that matters,” head coach Sid van Druenen said. “Credit to Detroit, you can’t ever really plan for them. They played two or three different systems today – they change on the fly. They created some good chances and Morefield made some good saves. We need Morefield to make those saves in order for us to get wins and clean sheets.

“Playoff ball is win and move on or lose and go home, so it’s always going to have a little bit of an edge to it.”

The margins were razor thin on Sunday as each team cracked 15 shots and each side made five saves. However, it came down to the penalty kick opportunity that decided the game.

UDM’s Samory Powder was a constant thorn in the side of the Jaguars’ defense as he had a shot redirect off an IUPUI defender and have to be cleared off the back line by Dominic Breidenbach in the 32nd minute to keep the shutout intact. In the 48th minute, Morefield made a superb diving stop to push a Powder shot wide of the post and in the 65th minute, Morefield plucked a Luke Winters header out of the air for one of his four stops.

The winning moment came in the 72nd minute when Vermillion turned the corner against his defender and was shoved to the turf by UDM’s Mateo Phillips for the PK opporunity. Hackaa capitalized for his team-high third game-winner of the season. Vermillion nearly sealed the deal in the 81st minute, going 1-v-4 through a bevy of Titan defenders before having his shot cleared away by netminder Jonathan Kilewer.

Playing with the lead, the Jags showed some moxie in killing the clock and securing the win. The back line repeatedly fended off the Titans direct attacks, forcing the guests to reset against a rapidly improving defensive unit.

Detroit Mercy earned a 10-3 advantage on corner kicks, including 8-3 margin after halftime, but IUPUI continued to deny the restarts.

Powder had a team-high five shots, putting three on frame, and Guershom Sylvain attempted four off the Titans’ bench. Horizon League Freshman of the Year Josemir Gomez paced the Jaguars with four attempts and both Hackaa and Kade Tepe had three apiece.

IUPUI advances to the semifinals round of the Horizon League Tournament for the first time since 2018 and will face Wright State at 4:00 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 10. That contest will be broadcast on ESPN+ with the winner playing in the Horizon League Championship game on Saturday, Nov. 12 at 1:00 p.m.

WOMEN’S BASKETBALL TO OPEN REGULAR SEASON AT HOME ON MONDAY

INDIANAPOLIS – The IUPUI women’s basketball team will officially kickoff the 2022-23 season on Monday, November 7 with a new head coach leading the way. Kate Bruce begins her tenure with the Jags at home in the Jungle against UIC at 7:00 PM. The reigning Horizon League Champions will also be presented their 2022 Championship rings before tipoff.

Head coach Kate Bruce enters her first season with the Jaguars with a new staff and several new faces. She brought on Johnny Montello (Assistant Coach/Recruiting Coordinator), Kortney Dunbar (Assistant Coach), China Dow (Assistant Coach) and Hannah Blake (Director of Basketball Operations) to aid her in continuing the Jaguars’ success.

IUPUI finished on top of the Horizon League last season sealing the 2022 KEEPS Horizon League Championship title with a win over Cleveland State in the championship game, 61-54. The Jags then moved onto the NCAA Tournament falling just short to Oklahoma in the opening round, 78-72. Before tipoff on Monday, the 2021-22 Jaguars will be presented their championship rings in a celebration of their achievements.

Those receiving their rings and returning for the Jags include starters Rachel Kent (10.5 ppg, 70 3’s) and Destiny Perkins (6.6 ppg, 72 assists) along with Natalie Andersen (5.3 ppg, 21.8 mpg) and Ali Berg (1.7 ppg, 1.2 rpg). Other returners from the championship team that look to make a big impact this season include Jaci Jones, Logan Lewis, Jacquel Bronaugh and Nakaih Hunter.

The freshman class of Brianna Wooldridge, Abby Wolterman and Teresa Maggio will provide fresh talent for the Jags while Coach Bruce also added new faces from the transfer portal with Genesis Parker (Butler) and Jazmyn Turner (Ball State).

The Jaguars host UIC on Monday at 7 PM ET on ESPN3. Tickets are just $10 for adults and admission is FREE for IUPUI students with a valid Crimson Card.

IUPUI MEN’S BASKETBALL PREVIEW

(THE ALMANAC)

The chance to coach at one’s alma mater is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Matt Crenshaw deserved this golden opportunity. Known for delivering one of the most iconic hardwood moments in IUPUI history, the prodigal son jumped at this chance when the head coaching vacancy arose last summer. Despite his most recent stint as a Ball State assistant, he’s a Jaguar through and through. He’s never strayed far from his Indiana roots, deeply entangled in what many consider to be the heartland of hoops. Bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, Crenshaw detailed big, bold aspirations for the program’s trajectory at the introductory press conference last summer. Little did he know a Geostorm of apocalyptic proportions was in the forecast. The injury monsoon started when Zach Gunn, a former Ball State disciple of Crenshaw’s, tore his ACL in the fall. That was the first domino to fall. Then, even heavier rains came. The tale of last year’s roster carnage is too long to list in detail. All you need to know is that Crenshaw was hamstrung by having just six rotational players — yes, six total — for much of the season. Sadly, it somehow got worse. After Bakari LaStrap was injured in the Jaguars’ regular season finale, IUPUI suited up only five players for the Horizon Tournament. That’s right, folks. The Jaguars went to war with zero reinforcements. The image of their empty bench went semi-viral, publicizing the conundrum the Jaguars faced. Despite the impossible circumstances, they battled admirably in the opening round before ultimately running out of steam in the second half. That tumultuous 2022 season is officially a wrap. Now, it’s time for a mulligan.

ROAD TO SUCCESS

The nuances of Crenshaw’s preferred style of play — how he wants to defend and how he wants to score — are of minute importance in the wake of last year’s roster roller coaster. First, back to basics. A healthy, intact roster would make all the difference for Crenshaw in his quest to bring his alma mater back to prominence. A flood of new names adorns this year’s roster, but a few holdovers remain. Jo[1]nah Carrasco and Boston Stanton III are back in action after getting pressed into prominent roles last year. After starting 16 of IUPUI’s first 19 games, Carrasco succumbed to the ever-present injury bug, but he’s a mobile forward who knows his role. Stanton, meanwhile, was one of the last men standing to end the year, but his catastrophically low 59.2 offensive rating underscores how overmatched the 6-5 wing was as a freshman. Ultimately, the most pivotal returner is Gunn, who opted to stay put and help Crenshaw rewrite last year’s script. The good news with the timing of Gunn’s injury is that he was already cleared for action this summer. If healthy, bet on Gunn making big waves in his Horizon League debut. He’s got a silky-smooth arsenal and showcases impressive shot making ability from all three levels. Gunn is gifted enough to carry the Jags to a couple of wins on his own. However, that’s not a sustainable standalone recipe for consistent success in 2023. Crenshaw will need his hand-picked newcomers to rise to the occasion. He’s particularly fond of Bryce Monroe (San Diego transfer, started at Sam Houston State) and Chris Osten (Northern Illinois transfer, started at Arizona State), who will help groom a slew of newcomers devoid of significant Division I experience. Neither the jet-quick Monroe nor the imposing Osten is likely to blossom into a star, but they are both steady hands joining a team that desperately needs some. Despite Crenshaw’s Indiana connections, he’s been mining for additional talent everywhere. While the Hoosier state houses a hotbed of talent, competition is fierce. Wisely, he dug up a few diamonds in the rough from the JUCO circuit. One example is North Idaho swingman Cooper DeWitt. The 6-6 wing is touted as a lights-out shooter and versatile defender. An all-league performer there, DeWitt tallied 13.7 points, 4.3 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game while holding pristine shooting percentages. Projecting a precise order of the depth chart is a puzzling dilemma, but pock[1]ets of potential are scattered throughout the roster

POTENTIAL POTHOLES

While there may not be marquee names jumping off the page, Crenshaw’s first order of business is bolstering the reserve unit. Ideally, he’d love to loosen up the offense this season, but no team can play in transition without a viable bench. He specifically cited how injuries derailed his hopes of playing up-tempo last year. Jaguar fans will get a sneak peek at the future in the rookie class. For that depth to exist, the unseasoned first-years will need to grow up in a hurry. The one he’s raving about is DJ Jackson, who hails from the greater Toronto-land area north of the border. Jackson carries a reputation as a superb scorer, but Crenshaw cited bonus traits in the freshman’s game. He brings multi positional size at the guard position and, like Gunn, projects as a malleable defender on the perimeter. Jackson is also a graduate of the Montverde Academy school of basketball, which continues to churn out big time performers at both the college and pro levels. Alongside Jackson arrive a pair of tantalizing twins, Ahmad Jarrard and Armon Jarrard, who played their high school ball just down the road at Mount Vernon High School. They are truly two peas in a pod, opting to stay close to home and family while possessing similar games. Ahmad, the taller of the twins, received serious looks from multiple respectable mid-major programs, Wright State and Coastal Carolina notably. He’s blessed with “easy athleticism,” able to explode to the rim without breaking a sweat. Nap Town natives will keep a watchful eye on Ahmad and Armon’s quest to inject life back into the IUPUI program.

KEY DEPARTURES

B.J. MAXWELL (12.5 ppg, 5 rpg, 1.1 apg)

BAKARI LASTRAP (8 ppg, 2 rpg, 2.5 apg)

MIKE DEPERSIA (6.4 ppg, 3 rpg, 3.5 apg)

NATHAN MCCLURE (6.4 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 1.1 apg)

KEY NEWCOMERS

BRYCE MONROE (transfer, San Diego)

DJ JACKSON (freshman, Montverde)

COOPER DEWITT (transfer, North Idaho College)

CHRIS OSTEN (transfer, Northern Illinois)

DAYLAN HAMILTON (transfer, Triton College)

THE X-FACTOR

Sorry to beat the injury drum again, but it cannot be understated how ruinous the domino effect was last season. Crenshaw isn’t pointing the finger here, though, opting to focus on what’s within his control. To him, it comes down to defense and ball security. Two of the JUCO additions, John Egbuta and Jlynn Counter, are physical specimens and should make an immediate impact on the defensive end at their respective positions. Egbuta should play much bigger than his 6-6 frame, but he’ll need assistance from Osten and Carrasco — the only two players above 6-7 on the roster. Curing the turnover bug is also paramount. The Jags’ offense stalled without a steady hand in the backcourt, which paved the way for Bryce Monroe’s fresh start in Indy. He’s the closest pure point guard prototype of the backcourt options, but Crenshaw confirmed multiple ball handlers will be interchanged. Counter will be in this mix, along with Jarrard and potential X-factor Daylan Hamilton. Relative to his JUCO brethren here, Hamilton’s played at the highest level of them all. After a cup of coffee at Western Michigan in 2021, Hamilton joined a loaded Triton College club last year, and averaged just under 10 a game for the national title runner up. While guys like Jackson, and the Jarrards may take time to blossom, Hamilton’s a ready-made contributor at this level.

THE OUTLOOK

Last season was an all-time low for the once-proud IUPUI program. No team was mutilated by injuries to the extent these Jaguars were. They were already talent-depleted entering Crenshaw’s first season, but injuries exacerbated that deficiency tenfold. As the glorious Ron Hunter era memories fade further into the past with each season, Crenshaw is ready to recapture that magic. Assembling the right pieces for his system is no small task, but it’s the first stepping stone to a potential program 180. Remember, this reclamation project is a multi-year endeavor, so a close microscope will be watching over the young guns.

BALL STATE FALLS IN HEARTBREAKER AGAINST BUFFALO IN MAC CHAMPIONSHIP

BUFFALO, N.Y. – The Ball State soccer team returned to UB Stadium on Sunday for the Mid-American Conference Championship against Buffalo. The Cardinals finished the season as the MAC Regular Season and MAC Tournament Runners-Up.

Before the season started, Ball State was the underdog. In the preseason coaches’ poll, the Cardinals were voted to tie for seventh. BSU knew it had a chip on its shoulders and a lot to prove to everyone. The Cardinals battled all season long and proved a lot of people wrong. Ball State finished the regular season and earned a spot into the MAC Tournament as the No. 2 seed. They finished as the MAC Tournament Runners-Up.

“It’s always tough to end the season on a loss, especially in a conference final when there’s so much to play for,” said Head Coach Josh Rife. “At some point you can look back and really appreciate what all the team has done. We were predicted to finish tied for seventh and ended up in the conference final for the third time in five years. The team and staff gave everything all season long and I can’t thank them all enough for making this a truly memorable year.”

The Cardinals end the season with a 7-5-8 mark and finished the MAC schedule with a 6-1-4 record.

The Bulls got on the board first when Leah Wengender scored on a shot from outside the box and went to the top, left corner of the net.

The Cardinals did not record a shot in the first half and Bethany Moser made four saves to keep the score at 1-0 at the break.

Acadia Murphy notched the first shot on goal for Ball State in the 63rd minute, but the Buffalo keeper made the save.

In the 73rd minute, Kaya Schultz found Arianna Zumpano running into the box as Zumpano extended the Buffalo lead to 2-0.

Sammi Corcoran, Jenna Dombrowski, and Moser all earned spots onto the MAC All-Tournament Team.

Moser finished the match with five saves and posted a career-high 83 saves on the season. Moser earned a spot in the BSU record book as her 83 saves is the fifth most in program history.

Abby Elgert finished the season tied for the most assists in a single season in Ball State history with seven.

Avery Fenchel finished the season with 11 goals, which is second most in Cardinal history and her 22 points is tied for fourth best in a single season for Ball State.

BALL STATE MEN’S BASKETBALL PREVIEW

(THE ALMANAC)

It’s a new dawn and a new day in Ball State basketball history. This proud program, located in the belly of the basketball beast that is Indiana, demands excellence. Not mediocrity. Former head coach James Whitford understands this reality all too well. Whitford made major strides his first five seasons, notching two 20-win campaigns and a third 19-win season in 2018. The Cardinals fell on hard times the past three years, but it was far from a disaster. Still, a 28-27 record in the MAC since 2020 did little to appease the appetite for success in Muncie. Unsatisfied with moderate returns under Whitford, the athletic department decided to move on from the coach and took a big swing in finding a replacement. Fittingly, it was a homegrown Hoosier, Michael Lewis, who decided it was time for a return to his Midwest roots. Lewis is fresh off a three-year term as an assistant under Mick Cronin at UCLA. The Bruins’ recent return to glory is one of many reasons Ball State sees a bright future under Lewis’ direction. He studied under many bright basketball minds, including Tim Miles at Nebraska, as well as both Brad Stevens and Chris Holtmann at Butler. Many Hoosiers will also remember Lewis from his playing days at Indiana, where his basketball mind was molded by the great Bobby Knight. Lewis recognizes his coaching path has been quite a privilege. He says he’s pocketed bits and pieces from each former mentor along the way. For example, Lewis reveres Cronin’s ability to communicate and build relationships with players, a skill he sees as a differentiator in the current era of college basketball. Recruiting new players is only part of the equation; re-recruiting existing players is now equally, if not more, important. Thankfully for the Cardinals, Lewis did just that this summer. He convinced many of Whitford’s players to stick around and prevented a major roster implosion often seen with first-year head coaches. This is a testament to Lewis’ authenticity and speaks volumes about the respect he has already commanded in the Ball State locker room.

ROAD TO SUCCESS

Three future cornerstones were close to pulling the plug on their Ball State tenure — Payton Sparks, Jaylin Sellers and Basheer Jihad — but Lewis managed to reel them back in. This second-year trio is a tight-knit group and believes brighter days are ahead under Lewis’ stewardship. Sparks and Sellers choosing to return completely shifts the paradigm of Ball State’s season outlook. The two reigning MAC All-Freshman honorees carry unbounded po[1]tential — especially Sparks, the 2022 MAC Freshman of the Year. At 6-9, 240 pounds, he plays like a bull in the paint, blessed with the lower body strength to match. He tossed around veteran forwards like ragdolls throughout his first year, a scary thought for what Sparks has in store this season. The refreshing element of Sparks’ game is his reliable stroke from the charity stripe, where he took up full-time residency last season. Sparks attempted 201 free throws and converted at a respectable 71 percent clip. Sellers, a 6-4 wing, is also on the fast track to success. He thrived in the sixth-man role last season, but could seize the vacancy in the starting lineup this year. As a reliable long range shooter and disruptive defender, Sellers, whether he starts or not, will be in the thick of high-leverage minutes. Fellow sophomore Jihad has more to prove than Sellers but there’s real potential here. A stretch-4 with a feathery touch, Jihad canned 11 of his 22 long range attempts last year. Jihad’s size-with-shooting package is a valu[1]able commodity on this roster. He’s still in the fetal stages of his development but he’ll have to grow up in a hurry to barge his way into this year’s frontline rotation. A number of upperclassmen also stayed put, including backcourt stalwarts Luke Bum[1]balough, Demarius Jacobs and Jalen Windham, who will all be reunited with their former perimeter running mate, Jarron ‘Boogie’ Coleman. Coleman shined in Muncie as a rookie in 2019-20, earning MAC Freshman of the Year honors, and he eventually went on to test his talents in the SEC. He’s now back in the MAC arena, where he’s an established asset on both ends of the floor. Mickey Pear[1]son rounds out the list of relevant returners who made a splash last season. His muted per-game averages may be deceiving, as Pearson possesses that short-sprint boom potential — he topped 10 points in four separate contests last season. There’s a lot of individual promise, but how they blend together will be the make-or[1]break determinant in Lewis’ first season. He’s a huge proponent of shot selection and broader basketball intelligence, as there’s little room for selfish decision-making. In terms of Xs and Os, Lewis wants a perimeter-oriented lineup with four ‘triple-threat’ options on the floor at all times. That leaves Sparks as the epicenter, free to roam in[1]side with ample spacing. He’s keen on deploying multiple creators, rather than leaning on one ball-dominant initiator. Lewis believes with Bumbalough, Jacobs and Coleman, he has a ready-made starter kit for his offense. The Cardinals will trot out three dynamic guards capable of putting pressure on the defense from multiple angles, especially in pick-and-roll action, which should be a focal point of Lewis’ blueprint.

POTENTIAL POTHOLES

Lewis’ affinity for multiple ball-handlers should help alleviate the turnover woes that plagued the Cardinals last sea[1]son. The sure-handed, sharpshooting Bumbalough will set the tone, while Jacobs and Coleman will follow. Coleman struggled with ball security as a rookie, posting a 26.3 percent turnover rate during his freshman season. A year in the SEC pressure cooker should breed confidence as he re[1]turns to the MAC playground, but he still needs to clean up the turnovers. Jacobs is a fungible plug-and-play piece in the backcourt and was fairly reliable protecting the rock last season. In fact, giveaways have plagued Ball State for years. The Cardinals haven’t posted a top-150 turnover rate since the 2007-08 season. That has to change. Turnovers are just one of a few flaws that surfaced last year due to sheer inexperience. Those youngsters are now a year older and wiser, but Lewis brought in a seasoned adult in Coleman to ensure those same warts don’t pop again in 2023.

KEY DEPARTURES

TYLER COCHRAN (11.6 ppg, 5.6 rpg, 2.2 apg)

MIRYNE THOMAS (11.3 ppg, 4.9 rpg, 1.9 apg)

KEY NEWCOMERS

JARRON COLEMAN (transfer, Missouri)

THE X-FACTOR

Team toughness lies at the heart of everything Lewis wants to revamp about this team’s culture. As he puts it, “I don’t deal well with soft.” From a physicality perspective, the Cardinals have a tone setter up front in Sparks. The key will be extrapolating that to the perimeter, where Lewis is looking to dial up ball pressure this season. In short, he wants to be tough inside and disruptive outside. Perhaps more critical is the mental toughness side of the coin. Toughness begets confidence, and revitalizing that mojo for a team that lost 17 games last year is a must. This team had real positive stretches last season, but the Cardinals struggled to stop the bleeding whenever opponents put together a serious run. All in all, this is a roster that’s still learning how to win. The tools and pieces are there. The next frontier is instilling a mature mental psyche, as Lewis witnessed with UCLA’s recent resurgence under Cronin.

THE OUTLOOK

There’s something brewing in Ball State this summer. Reinvigorated by a new coach and blank canvas, it’s hard not to be bullish on a 2023 turnaround. Don’t forget that Ball State won nine MAC games last year, including a 10-point win over Toledo and a one-point loss to Kent State. At their best, the Cardinals could run with anyone. Consistency was the missing ingredient. To Lewis, toughness is the prerequisite to the consistency this team needs to climb higher in the standings. On paper, the talent is in place for a breakthrough campaign. Learning from last year — and listening to Lewis’ preachings — could manifest Ball State into a MAC title contender in no time.

BALL STATE BEGINS NEW ERA OF BASKETBALL AGAINST EARLHAM

MUNCIE, Ind. – The Ball State men’s basketball team will begin the Michael Lewis era on Monday, Nov. 7, against Earlham at 7 p.m. inside Worthen Arena. Lewis was introduced as head coach of the Ball State men’s basketball team on March 25, 2022. Lewis became the 20th head coach in men’s basketball history.

BSU students, be among the first 300 in The Nest and receive a free hot dog, a slice of pizza, a fountain drink, or a beer. Arrive early, cheer loud, and enjoy responsibly.

The newly formed staff with ties to the state has a total of 76 years of experience with 33 postseason appearances and numerous conference championships, either as a coach or as a player.

The Cardinals bring back Mid-American Conference Freshman of the Year and MAC All-Freshman Team member Payton Sparks, who was also a 2022-23 Preseason All-MAC First Team selection. Other returners include MAC All-Freshman Team member Jaylin Sellers, Luke Bumbalough, Ben Hendriks, Demarius Jacobs, Basheer Jihad, Mickey Pearson Jr., and Jalen Windham. BSU brought back former MAC Freshman of the Year Jarron Coleman after a season at Missouri. Quincy Adams, Micah Bell, Kaiyem Cleary, Jack Futa, and Darian Owens-White are the newcomers.

Sparks had a team-best 13.5 points per game and 8.5 rebounds per contest. Sparks tallied 418 points last season and is third as a freshman in all-time scoring, behind Bonzi Wells (474) and Ray McCallum (463). Sparks attempted 202 free throws last season, which was tied for 14th in the NCAA and led the MAC. He attempted more free throws than any other freshman in the NCAA. Sparks finished second on the team with 15 blocks. He recorded 12 double-doubles on the season to lead all freshmen and finished second in the MAC. Sparks finished the season with 24 games scoring double figures and 13 games with double-digit rebounds. Sparks’ 8.45 rebounds per game was fourth in the MAC, while his 13.48 points per game was 17th in the conference.

Sellers picked up an All-Freshman Team nod after a strong conference portion of the season. He collected double-digit points in six games on the year. He produced double-digit points in three of the last four games, including a career-best 16 points in the season finale at Western Michigan. He accumulated 207 points. Sellers averaged 6.7 points per game, 1.8 rebounds per game, 24 steals, 16 assists, and seven blocks.

Coleman is no stranger to Ball State as he spent time with the Cardinals from 2018-2021. After taking a redshirt season in 2018-19, Coleman made his presence known as he went on to win the Mid-American Conference Freshman of the Year in 2020. He tallied 288 points and finished his freshman campaign as the 10th-leading scorer by a freshman in Ball State history. He averaged 10.2 points per game, 5.4 rebounds per game, and 3.2 assists per game to lead all freshmen in MAC play.

Last season, Coleman appeared in 31 games, including 21 starts for Missouri. He led the Tigers with 36 made 3-pointers and finished the year shooting 30.3 percent from 3-point range. His 36 3-pointers were tied for 15th in the SEC. He led Missouri with 2.8 assists per game, which was tied for 17th best in the SEC. He produced a season-best 17 points to go along with his season-high five 3-pointers made against Alabama.

Bumbalough led the 2021-22 squad with 78 made 3-pointers, which is ranked third all-time in a single season. He is currently ranked seventh all-time with 172 made 3-pointers. His 492 3-point attempts have him ranked fifth all-time.

Series History with Earlham

Monday will mark the 41st meeting between Ball State and Earlham. The Cardinals lead the all-time series 30-10. BSU has won the last three meetings. The Cardinals are 18-2 at home against the Quakers. This will be the first meeting since February 26, 1964.

Scouting the Quakers

The Quakers are led by Jaden Terry, who was named to the All-HCAC (Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference) last season. Terry led the team with an average of 17.6 points per game, led the team with 61 steals, led the team with 52 assists, and averaged 4.8 rebounds per game. Tommy Makabu averaged 11.7 points per game and averaged 3.1 boards per contest. EC returns its leading shot blocker in Xavier Barbel, who blocked 11 shots last season. The Quakers bring back six players from the previous season and welcome 14 new players.

NOTRE DAME MEN’S BASKETBALL PREVIEW

THE ALMANAC

THE SCOOP

Mike Brey and the Irish were rolling. They went to back-to-back Elite Eights in 2015 and 2016, then finished second in the ACC and won 26 games in 2017. But after that came four consecutive seasons of shocking mediocrity in South Bend — during that stretch, Notre Dame failed to post a winning record in ACC play, causing some concern that the end was near for Brey. Thankfully, the Irish responded a year ago with a 15-5 ACC mark, which tied for second in the league and culminated in an appearance in the NCAA Tournament. Notre Dame earned an 11-seed and knocked off 6-seed Alabama in the First Round before losing to Texas Tech with a Sweet 16 berth on the line. “I needed a good year last year,” Brey admitted. Brey got it, and he can thank South Bend native Blake Wesley. Wesley came out of nowhere to lead Notre Dame in scoring (14.4 points per game) in 2022, becoming a one-and-done first-round NBA Draft pick in the process. Fellow starters Paul Atkinson Jr. and Prentiss Hubb have also departed, but Brey is celebrating the return of his own version of the Big 3: grad students Dane Goodwin, Nate Laszewski and Cormac Ryan. “I wasn’t sure that any of them would be back when the season ended,” Brey said. “But it was huge that all three of them returned.” While the Irish did lose a young star guard in Wesley, they will welcome in another top[1]flight talent in highly regarded frosh in JJ Starling.

ROAD TO SUCCESS

When Notre Dame and Brey have had success, it has largely been predicated on experience. That’s why this season appears as though it could be another one that ends with an NCAA Tournament appearance. Goodwin, Ryan and Laszewski are all fifth-year players, and six of the 12 scholarship players on the roster are currently enrolled in grad school. “We’re old,” Brey said. “Really, really old.” Goodwin has transitioned over the years from a high school four-man to a versatile guard who was second on the team in scoring and shot a scorching 46 percent from 3. Ryan came on strong late in the season, and it coincided with him processing the game better on the offensive end. Laszewski opted to return to school and brings size and elite shooting back to South Bend, and this past offseason Brey has pleaded with Laszewski to hunt his shot and “to not play safe.” Notre Dame shot 38 percent from the 3 as a team last season and could be even better collectively this year. The trio of Goodwin, Ryan and Laszewski combined to make 184-of-418 shots (44 percent) from long range in 2022. Veteran guard Trey Wertz, who has scored more than 1,000 points over a four-year career that began at Santa Clara, is also back after averaging 4.0 points per game off the bench while hitting 39 percent of his triples. Brey still wanted to get older in the offseason and added Niagara’s leading scorer Marcus Hammond (18.1 ppg), a quick guard from Queens. After four seasons in the MAAC — most recently under former Duke point guard Greg Paulus — the 6-3 flamethrower decided to transfer to the high-major ranks, where he’ll showcase impressive shooting off the bounce. “He’s always had to make plays and now he’s learning that these guys pass it so well and they’ll find him instead of him having to make every play,” Brey said of Hammond. Then, there’s the aforementioned Starling, a consensus top-25 recruit and New York native who played high school ball at La Lumiere School in Indiana. In addition to him, another top-100 player in 6-foot-8 power forward Ven-Allen Lubin joins the fold. Starling comes in with lofty expectations and Brey also anticipates Lubin having an immediate impact. Lubin is a physical forward who defends, rebounds and blocks shots — he doesn’t need to score to be effective. “JJ is the whole package, and Lubin is going to help us right away,” Brey said. “We knew he (Starling) could shoot it, but he’s a much better passer than I thought and he is really good off the dribble. He’s so easy to play with, and doesn’t need the ball in his hands to be effective.”

POTENTIAL POTHOLES

Brey and the Irish aren’t overly deep, and they also need to make sure they don’t get dominated on the glass on a consistent basis. Notre Dame goes seven strong with Goodwin, Ryan, Laszewski, Star[1]ling, Lubin, Hammond and Wertz. Additionally, Brey is confident that 6-9, 240-pound junior big man Matt Zona will be a serviceable and effective backup who does all the dirty work and has no issue throwing his body around. “We’ve always played seven or eight guys and those guys play heavy minutes,” Brey said. After that, it’s a bunch of players who have been in the program and haven’t been able to get on the court much. Brey is hopeful that 6-6 sophomore wing J.R. Konieczny, who averaged 1.6 points and played just seven games last season, can see an expanded role this season. Or maybe athletic junior wing Tony Sanders Jr., who scored a total of six points last season and appeared in just six games, can also make strides and become a part of the rotation. Freshman big man Dom Campbell has a bright future, but it’ll be surprising to see the Maine native on the court much this season. The same can be said for oft-hurt senior guard Robby Carmody — who has dealt with three major injuries and only played 16 games in his four years on campus. Brey isn’t nearly as concerned with his depth as he is with going up against rugged, strong, athletic frontlines. Notre Dame doesn’t have a big-time re[1]bounder this season as it has deployed in the past with John Mooney, Luke Harangody and Bonzie Colson. “We need Lubin, Nate and Zona to hold their own against some of those frontlines,” Brey said. “Rebounding is my biggest concern.”

KEY DEPARTURES

BLAKE WESLEY (14.4 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 2.4 apg)

PAUL ATKINSON (12.5 ppg, 6.9 rpg, 1.7 apg)

PRENTISS HUBB (8.9 ppg, 3.2 rpg , 4.0 apg)

KEY NEWCOMERS

JJ STARLING (freshman, La Lumiere)

MARCUS HAMMOND (transfer, Niagara)

VEN-ALLEN LUBIN (freshman, Orlando Christian Prep)

DOM CAMPBELL (freshman, Phillips Exeter Academy)

THE X-FACTOR

Wesley was the X-factor a year ago when he led the Irish in scoring as a freshman and also helped lead Notre Dame to its first NCAA Tournament berth in five years. Starling is a completely different player than Wesley, but he’ll need to be as impactful for Brey to make back-to-back Big Dances. Starling is a much better perimeter shooter than Wesley, but Wesley was able to make tough shots, get to the basket and also score in transition. “Blake had the ball in his hands and made plays,” Brey said. “We don’t go anywhere without Blake last season. But Blake needed the ball in his hands more than JJ.” Goodwin, Laszewski and Ryan are all quality college players. Hammond should come in and give Brey another scorer, but it’ll be Starling who has the highest upside and will determine this team’s ceiling.

THE OUTLOOK

There’s no reason this shouldn’t be a tournament team again with a trio of experienced starters and the addition of a couple of talented freshmen. The loss of Wesley was unexpected and will hurt, but Starling should slip right in and make an immediate impact. The 63-year-old Brey is reinvigorated. This is a guy who had a stretch from 2010-2017 where he went to the tourney seven of eight years. He’s had some terrific offensive teams, and feels that this one can score at a high level. “We can shoot it, we can pass it and can really move the ball,” Brey said. “We’ll be good positional defense. It’s just getting that first miss.” And now the holdovers have gotten a taste of winning, and that NCAA Tournament experience should help the Irish to get back to the dance. At least, that’s the expectation again around South Bend.

IRISH FALL TO NC STATE IN FOUR

SOUTH BEND, Ind. – The Notre Dame Fighting Irish fell in a tough four-set battle to NC State on Sunday, Nov. 6 at Purcell Pavilion. After falling in set one, the Irish were able to claim the second set, but fell in sets three and four to the Wolfpack (20-25, 25-22, 18-25, 23-25).

The Irish had a strong defensive match at the net as they finished with 15 team blocks, led by Lucy Trump with nine and Kaylyn WInkler with seven.

Trump was just one block shy of a triple-double as she tallied 13 kills, 12 digs, and nine blocks for the Irish. Winkler also finished with eight kills and an impressive .500 hitting percentage. Paris Thompson chipped in nine kills for the Irish, followed by Avery Ross and Phyona Schrader who finished with seven kills a piece. Libero Hattie Monson also finished with 20 digs for Notre Dame.

After falling in set one, the Irish came out strong in set two with Thompson and Winkler each recording four kills in the second. The Irish also finished with 10 blocks in the set while Trump tallied five of her nine blocks in set two as well. After trailing 19-16, the Irish went on a 5-0 run to take the lead 21-19, but two NC State kills made it an even 21-21. Tied again at 22-22, kills from Thompson and Winkler would guide the Irish to the 25-22 set two win.

The Wolfpack was able to claim an early 5-1 lead over the Irish in set three and extended the lead to eight at the 19-11 mark. Despite kills from Winkler, Ross, and Trump, NC State would close out the set and take the 2-1 advantage heading into set four.

It was a close start in set four as the lead continued to go back and forth. After being tied for the ninth time in set four at 12-12, NC State was able to claim a 17-14 advantage. Kills from Paris Thompson tied it up at 20-20 and again at 21-21, but the Wolfpack would go on to take home the set four victory at 25-23.

UP NEXT

The Irish will celebrate their five seniors during the Senior Day celebration directly after the match on Friday, Nov. 11 against Florida State.

IRISH HOST NORTHERN ILLINOIS TO OPEN 2022-23 CAMPAIGN

After an offseason filled with transfers in and out of the program, storylines around a devastating Sweet 16 loss and a dominant exhibition win over Truman State, the No. 9/10 Notre Dame women’s basketball team (0-0) will host Northern Illinois (0-0) on Monday to start its 2022-23 season.

Karen & Kevin Keyes Head Coach Niele Ivey enters her third season with a 34-19 overall record and the aforementioned Sweet 16 appearance in March 2022, one which ended with a 66-63 loss to NC State. The Irish return four of five starters from last year’s squad, with third-round WNBA draft pick Maya Dodson being the only departure.

Core Four Return

Sonia Citron, Dara Mabrey, Olivia Miles and Maddy Westbeld will take the floor once again for Notre Dame beginning on Monday night. All four women had something to be proud of individually last season.

A 6-1 do-it-all guard out of New York, Citron was named the Rookie of the Year in the ACC in the spring after posting six ACC Freshman of the Week performances. When it came to freshmen-only statistics, Citron was second in the conference in points per game (11.8), first in rebounding (6.6) and third in assists (2.2). She was the only player to crack the top three in each category.

Citron averaged 14 points per contest in Notre Dame’s NCAA Tournament run and ended the season as the No. 6 freshman in the country, per ESPN.

She led the team with 17 points and 14 rebounds in Notre Dame’s 92-47 win over Truman State in an Oct. 31 exhibition.

Mabrey, who returns to Notre Dame for her fifth season of college basketball, is Notre Dame’s three-point specialist who is poised to top her sister Marina’s three-point scoring record this year. Undoubtedly the team’s most outspoken leader, Mabrey already has two seasons as a captain under her belt.

Point guard Olivia Miles is the face of the team — it will go as she goes this season. A member of the All-ACC First Team last year (and the only freshman to make that group), Miles earned the same preseason honor heading into her sophomore year. The team leader in both points (13.8) and assists (7.4) per game last year is on numerous watch lists, including for the Naismith Trophy and Nancy Lieberman Award.

The final returning starter is junior Maddy Westbeld, who exploded during March after struggling early in the year. She shot 60.6 percent during the Big Dance, which was fourth in the nation amongst players who played at least two NCAA Tournament games.

Three Transfers, Two Down Low

To mitigate the loss of Dodson, Ivey went to the transfer portal and picked up two 6-4 players in Oregon’s Kylee Watson and Texas’ Lauren Ebo. Ivey describes the two as a combination of the skill set Dodson brought to Notre Dame — Watson is a quick-in-transition forward, while Ebo is more of a traditional center. Obviously, both talents have their benefits, and Ivey and Co. will rely on both of them heavily. Watson is set to be the fifth starter, but it was Ebo who dominated off the bench in the exhibition with 14 points.

Notre Dame picked up Jenna Brown from Stanford in the transfer portal as well. Brown brings national championship experience and an extremely high IQ to this team. While her career thus far has been plagued by injuries, Brown is currently healthy and set to be a leader on and off the court.

Huskies bring glass-crashing experience

Lisa Carlsen enters her eighth season as the head coach at Northern Illinois, and the Huskies are coming off of a 14-14 record in 2021-22. The team topped Loras 88-61 in its exhibition game on Oct. 29.

While the team often failed to finish possessions last year — NIU ranked 10th in the MAC with 66.7 points per game — the Huskies had no shortage of opportunities thanks to top-notch rebounding numbers. NIU averaged 41.7 rebounds per game last year, which was 25th nationally.

That number was made possible largely with the help of returning senior forward A’Jah Davis, who posted 24 doubles-doubles last year (fourth in the country and an NIU single-season record). Davis averaged 16.6 points and 12 rebounds per game as a junior.

Both Davis and guard Chelby Koker earned preseason All-MAC honors, checking in on the First Team and Second Team, respectively. Koker missed the final 13 games last year due to injury, but she is healthy once again and looks to build upon her team-leading 17.8 points per game in 2021-22.

There are four newcomers on Carlsen’s team. Franklin Pierce transfer Emma Carter is expected to start for NIU after averaging more than 17 points per game last season en route to being an all-conference selection.

Notre Dame is 8-5 all-time against NIU and 4-1 at home. The teams last played in 2004, and the Irish brought home a victory after a 73-49 win as the away squad. This will be the first ranked opponent the Huskies have faced since 2011.

Tip off is Monday, Nov. 7 at 7 p.m. The game can be streamed on ACCNX.

INDIANA STATE BASKETBALL PREVIEW

(THE ATHLETIC)

Year one of the Josh Schertz era in Terre Haute was mired by a slew of injuries and COVID-related absences. Prior to the season even starting, the Indiana State Sycamores lost star guard and presumed leading scorer Tyreke Key. During the year, no single player on the roster played all 31 contests, and all but one missed two or more games with ailments. At times, ISU was forced to travel to opposing cities with just seven available players. Those absences forced Schertz to use an absurd 18 different starting lineups in the Sycs’ first 25 games. Few teams nationally faced more roster adversity. This season should be different. ISU returns 80 percent of its minutes from last year and adds a group of transfers sure to make an immediate impact. The Sycamores were an inexperienced squad last season, but this year, they will be among the oldest in the country. It is worth reminding the folks at home about Schertz’s resume. Schertz led the Division II Lincoln Memorial basketball program for 13 seasons. In that span, he made nine NCAA Tournaments (10 if you include the COVID cancellation), two Final Fours, and one National Championship game. His overall record at LMU was a gaudy 337-69 (.830), and he was a seven-time winner of his conference’s Coach of the Year award. So, yes, Schertz is an excellent coach who should grow the ISU in program in year two, now armed with a healthier and deeper roster.

ROAD TO SUCCESS

Schertz’s offenses were renowned at LMU. Last season’s Sycamores struggled with efficiency, but they should be much improved in 2022-23. ISU wants to play “fast, loose, and disciplined.” Schertz wants to get out in the open floor when possible. In the halfcourt, his offense relies on concepts rather than set plays, so greater familiarity with the read-and-react system among his players should breed greater results on the court. Schertz’s offensive goals are relatively simple. “As best we can, we try to generate a layup, get fouled, or, if not, hopefully draw attention and generate spot 3s,” he explained. Having a true point guard will certainly help drive the offense to greater success. Key’s absence last year altered ISU’s entire approach, and it was forced to use wings as primary ball handlers. Division II transfer Trenton Gibson could be the answer to Indiana State’s point guard question. At 6-4, Gibson is a big lead guard with excellent vision. He stuffed the stat sheet at the D2 level, averaging 17.2 points, 5.9 rebounds, and 5.3 assists per game. He is the only player in Tusculum’s history to tally 1,500 points, 600 rebounds, 400 assists and 100 steals for his career. Schertz is familiar with Gibson from his LMU days, when his squads did battle with Gibson’s in conference play. Indiana State has more size and skill than last year plus a wealth of experience. Six players who started 10-plus games return, and two more are back with starting reps. Cooper Neese and Cameron Henry will lead the way for the Sycs. Neese earned third-team All-MVC honors last season, while Henry was runner-up for Newcomer of the Year. Both stars averaged right around 15 points per game and should lead the Sycs in scoring once again. Neese will hope to fine-tune his outside shooting from a year ago; he shot 30.5 percent from deep after cashing 39.1 percent in 2020-21. Henry will get to move off the ball more this season and assume a more natural attacking position on the wing. Guards Xavier “Jabo” Bledson, Julian Larry, Cameron Crawford and Zach Hobbs all return with ample experience under their belts. Up front, Kailex Stephens is back to resume post duties. Lineup optionality will suddenly be a strength for a once-thin team; Schertz can reach deep into his rotation and put the best five on the floor for any given circumstance. Bledson was an all-bench selection in the MVC last season. He ranked third in the league in assist rate (KenPom) but struggled mightily with turnovers. Larry is a lockdown defender who should see the opposing team’s best perimeter player each night. Stephens can be utilized in an undersized center role, but he’ll have more help up front this season with the arrival of Truman State transfer Cade McKnight, a two-time Division II first-team All-American. McKnight is a tank on the block at 6-9 and 240 pounds. He should be able to transition smoothly to Valley play after dominating the D2 ranks for four years. Bradley transfer Jayson Kent and DePaul transfer Courvoisier McCauley are sure to make large impacts on the rotation. Kent started 15 games for the Braves last season and can slot into the 3 or 4 spot; his 6-8 frame will be key for a roster short on height. McCauley could be a bona fide star in the Valley. Schertz believes both his freshmen, Rob Martin and Robbie Avila, have the potential to develop into All-MVC players down the road. Martin was the Player of the Year in Missouri at CBC High School, and Avila could see minutes up front as one of the only true bigs on the roster.

POTENTIAL POTHOLES

Turnovers and offensive rebounding plagued Indiana State offensively last season. No team had a higher turnover rate in the Valley than the Sycs, and only one team in the country grabbed second chances at a lower rate. Schertz understands the magnitude of such weaknesses. “When margins are so small, the ability to generate extra possessions is huge.” Of the Sycamores’ 20 losses, 11 came by single-digits, and extra offensive rebounds or shot attempts could have tipped the scales in their favor. Turnover margin should improve with the addition of Gibson and another year of experience in Schertz’s system for the incumbent ball handlers. Though Indiana State returns a ton of production, those producers went 11-20 (4-14) last season. How much improvement can realistically be expected within a tough conference such as the Valley? Well, if you believe in Schertz’s track record, the returning talent and the additional pieces brought in, it could be an astronomical amount.

KEY DEPARTURES

MICAH THOMAS (9.7 ppg, 2.4 rpg, 2.0 apg)

SIMON WILBAR (3.7 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 0.3 apg)

KEY NEWCOMERS

COURVOISIER MCCAULEY (transfer, DePaul)

TRENTON GIBSON (transfer, Tusculum)

JAYSON KENT (transfer, Bradley)

CADE MCKNIGHT (transfer, Truman State)

MASEN MILLER (transfer, Truman State)

THE X-FACTOR

Many great teams around the country have what Schertz refers to as a “closer,” a guy who can take over a game in the final three to four minutes. Schertz believes his team has a closer this season in McCauley. “People might look at his numbers at DePaul and shrug them off, but he has a chance to be our leading scorer,” raved Schertz. “He’s wired to score; puts the ball in the basket.” McCauley’s minutes were hit or miss for the Blue Demons, but he had a nice six-game stretch in Big East play last season where he averaged 12.5 points per contest. Schertz should have a pretty good idea of McCauley’s impact — after all, he coached McCauley for two seasons at LMU, where McCauley led the Railsplitters (awesome name) to a 32-1 record and garnered All-America honors. Masen Miller, who journeyed to Terre Haute from Truman State with McKnight, is also a dark horse candidate to eat major minutes and even earn some starts. Schertz calls Miller an “elite shooter and competitive defensively.” He should be the Sycs’ best 3-point marksman after canning near[1]ly 100 last season at Truman.

THE OUTLOOK

Indiana State is poised to make a significant climb up the conference standings in 2022-23. The Sycs are old, experienced and familiar with a system that has won at a high level. Henry and Bledson, who came with Schertz from Lincoln Memorial, have a full year of D1 experience. With the additions of McCauley and McKnight, among others, Indiana State suddenly looks like one of the most talented teams in the Valley on paper. Don’t be surprised if the Sycamores are knocking on the door of a conference title come March.

SYCAMORES WELCOME SAINT LOUIS FOR 2022-23 SEASON OPENER

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – Indiana State opens its 2022-23 season Monday morning when it welcomes the Saint Louis Billikens for an 11 a.m. tip inside Hulman Center. The game will be carried on ESPN3.

Last Time Out

Chelsea Cain and Caitlin Anderson scored 14 points apiece Thursday evening, leading Indiana State past Lincoln (Mo.) in an exhibition, 75-66, inside Hulman Center.

Bella Finnegan added 11 off the bench, while Anna McKendree finished with 10. Cain led the Trees with eight rebounds, while Adrian Folks had eight points and six boards in her first game action since a season-ending injury last November.

After a tight opening 20 minutes, Indiana State pulled away with a 46-point second half, shooting 57 percent from the field in the third and fourth quarters. The Trees cut down on turnovers in the second half and, aside from a late fourth-quarter spurt, kept the visitors in check on the offensive side.

Early Riser

Indiana State has a rare opportunity on Monday, as the Sycamores are among the first games to kick off the 2022-23 season. Monday’s game against Saint Louis is one of nine 11 a.m. ET tipoffs on the opening day of play for Division I schools.

New Year, New Look

After playing most of the 2021-22 season with an eight-player rotation due to injuries and COVID concerns, Indiana State head coach Chad Killinger has a plethora of options at his disposal for the upcoming season.

All 13 players who were dressed for the Sycamores’ exhibition contest against Lincoln (Mo.) last week saw game action, with 11 of those 13 players seeing eight minutes or more of playing time. Four of the five newcomers scored five or more points, with two of them finishing in double-figures (Chelsea Cain 14, Bella Finnegan 11).

Burger’s Breakout Year

Indiana State guard Del’Janae Williams burst on the scene in a big way during the 2021-22 season, emerging as a leader in the Sycamore backcourt while establishing herself as one of the top guards in the Missouri Valley Conference.

Williams averaged 12.5 points, 3.0 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 2.0 steals, for the season, numbers that increased to 12.9 points, 3.7 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game in conference games.

Lalic Lights it Up

After averaging less than 12 minutes per game during the 2020-21 season while only averaging 2.3 points and 1.2 rebounds per game, Natalia Lalic had a breakout 2021-22 season where she emerged as one of the Sycamores’ top 3-point shooters.

The Australian started 26 of the 29 games she appeared in, scoring 7.9 points per game, including a career-high 20 in a conference-opening win over Drake, while knocking down 33 percent of her attempts from behind the arc. She also added 2.1 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game.

Thieves Avenue

Indiana State tended to make things difficult for opposition offenses last season, as the Sycamores led the Missouri Valley Conference in steals (313, 10.1 per game) and turnovers forced (560, 18.1 per game).

The Sycamores had a penchant for forcing turnovers in bunches during the 2021-22 campaign, as Indiana State forced 20 or more turnovers 11 different times during the season. Indiana State forced a season-high 36 turnovers against Stephens College and also forced 30 turnovers in its conference-opening win on the road at Drake.

Saint Louis at a Glance

Saint Louis was picked to finish 12th in the A10 this season, as voted on by the head coaches in the conference. The Billikens have a new leader at the helm, as Rebecca Tillett takes the reins of the program following a four-year stint at Longwood.

SLU finished last season at 9-18 overall and 5-9 in A10 play. Following the season, the Billikens overhauled the roster. Nine new faces joined the program this season, including six transfers. SLU placed two on the A10 Preseason All-Conference teams in Brooke Flowers and Kyla McMakin.

The Billikens also played an exhibition game Thursday, falling at home to Maryville 78-70. SLU trailed by as many as 29 in that game before staging a comeback attempt that fell short.

Series History Against Saint Louis

Indiana State and Saint Louis have previously met 11 times, with the Sycamores going 7-4 against the Billikens. ISU is 2-3 against SLU in Terre Haute.

Last Game Against Saint Louis (Nov. 14, 2021)

Adrian Folks had a career-high 24 points along with 10 rebounds but a late fourth quarter spurt pushed Saint Louis past Indiana State at Chaifetz Arena. The game was Indiana State’s first road contest of the 2021-22 season handed the Sycamores their first loss of the year.

The Sycamores led by a slim 49-48 margin after three quarters, but Saint Louis outscored Indiana State 17-9 in the fourth. A 13-0 Billiken run midway through the final frame proved to be the difference in the game, as SLU hit three 3-pointers during that span.

Up Next

Indiana State remains at home to face Central Michigan Nov. 16 at 6 p.m.

SYCAMORES TAKE ON PHOENIX IN 2022-23 REGULAR SEASON OPENER

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – The 2022-23 regular season is finally here as Indiana State welcomes the Phoenix of Green Bay to Hulman Center on Monday, November 7, with tipoff time set for 7 p.m. ET. The game will be carried live on ESPN3 and 105.5 The Legend.

Green Bay is one of five teams the Sycamores have home-and-home series with dating back to last season. ISU will also take on Ball State, North Dakota State, Miami (Ohio), and Northern Illinois this season in scheduled rematches with all but the Miami game set to compete in Hulman Center.

The Sycamores dominated in their lone exhibition leading up to the 2022-23 season as ISU topped visiting Tusculum this past Tuesday, 86-53. Kailex Stephens led four Indiana State players in double-digit scoring with 21 points, while Jayson Kent added 11 rebounds in the ISU win.

Seven different Indiana State players made their Sycamore debut on the court against the Pioneers with Trenton Gibson and Courvoisier McCauley both earning their first starts of the year in the exhibition against Tusculum.

SERIES HISTORY

Monday’s contest features the sixth meeting all-time between the Sycamores and the Phoenix. The Sycamores fell in the first two matchups between the programs back in 1994 and 2010, but rebounded to win each of the last four games, including last season’s 81-77 win in Green Bay, Wis.

LAST GAME AGAINST THE PHOENIX (FULL RECAP)

Kailex Stephens had a coming out party in his first regular season action after a season-ending injury a year ago. The forward willed Indiana State from a 12-point deficit after recording 16 points and grabbing 13 rebounds in the 81-77 victory over Green Bay Tuesday night inside the Kress Center. Cooper Neese scored 18 including a go-ahead bucket in the second half. Neese shot 6-for-15 while knocking down a pair of three-pointers.

With ISU on top 79-77 with 32 seconds, the Phoenix were able to get two shots up before Stephens grabbed the rebound and was fouled. Stephens went on to hit both of his free throws to ice the game and give first-year head coach Josh Schertz his first career win at Indiana State.

GREEN BAY AT A GLANCE

Green Bay was selected 10th overall in the Horizon League preseason poll as the Phoenix received 111 total points in the voting. Green Bay received the selection after posting a 5-25 overall record on the year with a 4-16 mark in Horizon play in 2021-22. The Phoenix roster underwent a complete overhaul in the offseason with Green Bay bringing in 10 new players, including six transfers and three true freshmen.

Green Bay lost all three of their leading scorers from the 2021-22 season with Donovan Ivory (11.9), Kamari McGee (11.6), and Emmanuel Ansong (11.0) all moving on. The Phoenix won both of their exhibition games this preseason with Green Bay topping St. Norbert (50-45) and Michigan Tech (72-66) over the last two weeks leading up to the regular season. Eight of the Phoenix players hail from the state of Wisconsin on the 2022-23 roster.

LAST TIME OUT

Shots fell early and often for Indiana State as the Sycamores topped Tusculum in Tuesday night’s exhibition at Hulman Center, 86-53. Kailex Stephens paced four Sycamores in double-digits with a game-high 21 points, while Jayson Kent added a team-high 11 rebounds as Indiana State led from start-to-finish in the season-opening exhibition.

ISU scored 16 of the first 20 points and carried a double-digit lead throughout a majority of the first half and led by as many as 27 at the break. The Sycamores’ lead peaked at 38 points on a Masen Miller layup at the 11:36 mark in the second half as ISU coasted to the nonconference win. Stephens went a game-best 10-of-13 from the floor and added five rebounds and three steals in 22 minutes. Robbie Avila added 13 points and three boards off the bench, while Xavier Bledson posted 12 points and six assists in the game. Trenton Gibson was the fourth Sycamore in double-digits as the Tusculum alum scored 11 points on 5-of-5 shooting and added four assists against his former team.

2022-23 RETURN TRIPS

Several familiar foes dot the 2022-23 nonconference schedule as the Sycamores feature five returners from last season. ISU will feature four teams making the return trip to the Hulman Center this winter, while the Sycamores will hit the road once to close out the home-and-home contracts.

Return Trips

2022-23                                       2021-22 (Results)

Nov. 7 vs. Green Bay                   Nov. 9 at GB – W, 81-77

Nov. 12 vs. Ball State                   Nov. 27 at BSU – L, 97-75

Nov. 17 vs. North Dakota State    Dec. 13 at NDSU – L, 77-70

Dec. 3 at Miami (Ohio)                 Dec. 4 vs. MOH – W, 69-68

Dec. 22 vs. Northern Illinois         Dec. 22 – Canceled (Covid)

BRINGING BACK EXPERIENCE

Despite losing seven letterwinners to the transfer portal, Indiana State finds itself in a favorable position as the Sycamores return four starters (Cooper Neese, Cameron Henry, Kaile Stephens, Julian Larry) from last year’s squad — the only institution among the league’s 12 members to do so.

The Sycamores also return six of their top seven scorers from the 2021-22 season with Cooper Neese (15.0), Cameron Henry (14.3), Kailex Stephens (9.8), Xavier Bledson (9.1), Zach Hobbs (6.3) and Julian Larry (5.7) all back in the mix for playing time this year.

WELCOME TO THE NEWCOMERS

The Sycamores roster welcomes nine newcomers to the floor in the 2022-23 season highlighted by five players with extensive NCAA experience. Joining the Sycamores roster this season include a trio of graduate transfers coming to Indiana State. Guard Courvoisier McCauley (DePaul), Trenton Gibson (Tusculum), and Cade McKnight (Truman State) all come to the Sycamores after graduating from their previous institutions.

Guard Masen Miller (Truman State) and wing Jayson Kent (Bradley) come to the Sycamores with three years of eligibility remaining. ISU’s roster also features four freshman with the addition of the highly-touted center Robbie Avila, as well as guards Rob Martin, Jaden Schertz, and Isaac Holmes.

PURDUE FT. WAYNE MEN’S BASKETBALL PREVIEW

(THE ALMANAC)

It was a February to remember for the Purdue Fort Wayne Mastodons. Once the calendar flipped, this veteran-laden squad suddenly looked invincible — and for the final nine games of the regular season, that’s exactly what they were. An improbable nine-game win streak vaulted the Mastodons from 6-6 to 15-6 in league play, securing a share of the Horizon League title belt with Cleveland State. For head coach Jon Coffman, it marked his fourth season amassing 18 or more wins since becoming head honcho in 2014. Such success begets higher expectations, as does a returning roster that looks eerily similar to last year’s co-champs. A quartet of seasoned grad students will lead the charge — Damian Chong Qui, Jarred Godfrey, Bobby Planutis and Ra Kpedi — along with true senior and reigning Horizon Sixth Man of the Year, Deonte Billups. Coffman’s persistent patience with this nucleus finally paid dividends. Granted, Purdue Fort Wayne couldn’t seal the deal in the Horizon League Tournament, resulting in the Mastodons being awarded a respectable CBI berth as a consolation prize. There’s unfinished business for this bunch of super duper seniors. Their loyalty to Coffman and this program shines through in a collective commitment for one last stand.

ROAD TO SUCCESS

This backcourt has it all. Ball handling, passing, defense — and of course, shooting. “I won’t recruit a perimeter player who can’t shoot it,” underscored Coffman. Put all of that together, and this perimeter crew checks every box. The black sheep of the bunch, the 5-8 Chong Qui is far smaller than his backcourt brethren. He was a revelation as an external hire last season. Coffman drooled over his potential as a table-setter from his time at Mount St. Mary’s, where ‘DCQ’ was cramped by a methodical half-court offense and poor spacing. Coffman set him loose last year, and, lo and behold, everything fell in place. Serving as the head of the snake, Chong Qui looked right at home in Coffman’s revved-up offense. Godfrey was a well-fed recipient of Chong Qui’s facilitation a year ago. No longer be[1]holden to wear both scorer and distributor hats, Godfrey flourished with Chong Qui as his sidekick. He put together a monster season, devastating opponents via lethal shot-making and decisive straight-line drives. At 6-5, his size, length and finishing touch (59.7 percent at the rim, per Hoop-Math) makes him a tough cover for smaller Horizon backcourts. Unsurprisingly, the power conference sharks were circling this summer, but Godfrey decided to stay put for one more rodeo in Fort Wayne. Billups did his damage in a super-reserve role last year, but he routinely clocked starters’ minutes in a thin rotation. He’s a natural replacement for Jalon Pipkins, the only lost starter from this past offseason. A sturdy two-way power guard, Billups was sorely missed in Purdue Fort Wayne’s’ anticlimactic postseason loss to Drake in the CBI. Coffman added two more bullets to the chamber in Radford transfer Quinton Morton-Robertson and D2 transfer Anthony Roberts. Morton-Robertson sat out last year but should see ample time at the point this season, potentially even alongside fellow diminutive dynamo Chong Qui. Coffman typically leans on bigger guards, but QMR’s ability to conduct an offense caught his eye, akin to the instincts that previously drew him to Chong Qui. Roberts, on the other hand, is an assertive scorer who torched the nets at the D2 level. Coffman is excited about Roberts’ multi-positional versatility on the defensive end, too. Up front, Planutis and Kpedi pair together like yin and yang. The lean, 6-8 Planutis is an inverted swing man armed with a pure shooting stroke (39 percent on 153 attempts from long distance last year). Kpedi, meanwhile, did the thankless work in the dirty areas, posting the fourth-best offensive rebounding rate in the Horizon last year. He was also the Mastodons’ best interior defender. The Mastodons dug in defensively last year, but this team will go as the offense goes. Everything starts with the prolific backcourt, the engine behind Purdue Fort Wayne’s Horizon League-leading 3-point and 2-point field goal percentages in 2022. The continuity in the lineup is crucial. “Our worst teams are the ones we want to run stuff for. The best ones are the ones that can read and react,” said Coffman. He believes this rendition is engraved with the right ‘read and react’ instincts, which is more in tune with his utopian offensive vision. Specifically, he wants to veer away from set plays in favor of individual player freedom of movement, and this talented backcourt has the chops to bring it to life.

POTENTIAL POTHOLES

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. But what if nothing’s broken? It’s rare to find a defending conference champion welcome back four starters and the reigning Sixth Man of the Year. If there’s a blemish to be found on last year’s resume, it’s the Mastodons’ discouraging performances against stiffer competition. Per the final NCAA team sheets, they played a grand total of two Quadrant 2 games all season — Minnesota in early November and Drake in the CBI — and dropped both in noncompetitive fashion. Purdue Fort Wayne even stumbled in Quadrant 3 bouts, winning only a third of its tilts against like-minded and lesser competition. The truth is, a gaudy record against the bot[1]tom quartile of the country buoyed the Mastodons’ overall record. Did the Mastodons simply catch the Horizon off guard last year? Coffman knows the perils of morphing from the hunter to the hunted, but he’ll breathe easy with such a sturdy roster foundation intact. The experience and maturity here can be the antidote to any mental lapses in 2023.

KEY DEPARTURES

JALON PIPKINS (13.5 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 2.1 apg)

KEY NEWCOMERS

QUINTON MORTON-ROBERTSON (transfer, Radford)

ANTHONY ROBERTS (transfer, Saint Cloud State)

DEANGELO ELISEE (transfer, Triton College)

THE X-FACTOR

On paper, this is not a team that oozes defensive destruction. The reality is, Purdue Fort Wayne boasted the Horizon’s top defensive unit on a per possession basis last year — juxtapose that next to the seventh-ranked offensive unit, and your brain might twist into a pretzel. One interpretation of that conundrum is as follows: The Mastodons may have been uncharacteristically inefficient on offense last year, but shockingly strong on the other end. Coffman’s pedigree as an offensive guru, meshed with this dynamite backcourt, leaves little to worry about in terms of putting points on the board. It comes down to whether the defensive effectiveness sustains. Coffman is nervous about what a post-Pipkins era looks like. He wore the ‘defensive stopper’ badge while doubling as a potent bucket-getter on the other end. However, Coffman is confident last year’s defensive effort was no fluke. The coach isn’t keen on gumming up his offense with slow-footed bigs, precisely why he entrusts the backbone of this defense to Planutis and Kpedi. They aren’t towering giants, but this duo moves well laterally and recovers in help side rotations in due time. The ace in the hole may be Deangelo Elise, a monster shot-blocker from the JUCO circuit. Coffman said Elise was initially pegged to backfill Kpedi’s spot, but Kpedi opted to take advantage of his bonus COVID year. That arms Coffman with two proven paint deterrents in the middle. Finally, Coffman underscored the impact Chong Qui delivered on the defensive end, too. Size limitations aside, he set the tone last year in what Coffman described as a more aggressive man-to-man front the perimeter. In essence, Coffman made no wholesale changes to his defensive playbook. He simply dialed up the aggression and leaned on Chong Qui’s spark to lead by example.

THE OUTLOOK

Fresh off last year’s share of the conference title, this grizzled group of vets will start in the pole position of the 2023 Horizon League race. The quest for a second straight regular season title is meaningful, but there’s bigger aspirations for this group. This is your annual reminder that Purdue Fort Wayne has never been dancing. Ever. With a proven batch of winners back for another go-round, is this the year the Mastodons finally get over that hump?

MASTODONS OPEN 2022-23 AT NO. 22 MICHIGAN

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – The Purdue Fort Wayne men’s basketball team hits the road to No. 22 Michigan on Monday (Nov. 7) night to open the season. The game will air on BTN.

Game Day Information

Who: Michigan Wolverines

When: Monday, November 7 | 6:30 PM

Where: Ann Arbor, Mich. | Crisler Center

Live Stats: Link

TV: BTN

Radio: 1380 AM The Fan | Listen

Game Notes (PDF): Purdue Fort Wayne | Michigan

‘DONS & ENDS

// Purdue Fort Wayne was picked to win the Horizon League in the preseason poll. The ‘Dons tied with Northern Kentucky for the first spot.

// The ‘Dons are number 17 in the preseason CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Top 25.

// The Mastodon roster has an average age of 21. The ‘Dons have a 35 combined seasons of NCAA collegiate experience.

// Newcomer Anthony Roberts scored 1,312 points over three seasons at NCAA Division II St. Cloud State. He was an all-league first team selection each of his final two years when he averaged 20 points and eight rebounds per game.

// The 2022-23 roster features student-athletes from Georgia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Wisconsin, Tennessee, Illinois, Iowa, Virginia, North Carolina and the Bahamas.

// Jarred Godfrey (1,613),  Damian Chong Qui (1,284) and Anthony Roberts (1,312) have each scored 1,000 career NCAA points. Deonte Billups (773) and Bobby Planutis (865) could enter that group this season.

// Monday’s play-by-play announcer on BTN, Kevin Kugler, was on the call for the Mastodons’ win over Indiana in Fort Wayne in 2016.

// Jon Coffman owns a 139-114 career record. He is already the Mastodons’ all-time leader in Division I coaching victories. He is nearing the program record for career wins. That total is held by Andy Piazza who went 142-108 with the ‘Dons from 1987 to 1996.

LAST SEASON THE MASTODONS… :

// … earned a share of the 2022 Horizon League regular season title.

// … earned their sixth postseason berth in program history, and their first trip to the CBI.

// … went on a 10-game win streak, the longest streak in the program’s Division I history.

// … won nine games in February. It was only the ninth time since 2010-11 a Division I team won nine or more games in the month of February (sports-reference.com).

// … went 14-2 at home, winning 14 games at home for the first time since 2016-17.

// … held a lead for five minutes or more in all but four games.

// … had seven different players lead the team in scoring.

// … earned these national top 25 ranks: steals per game (19th/8.8), total steals (19th/289) and 3-pointers per game (21st/ 9.4)

// … recorded the highest Effective field goal percentage in program history (77 percent) in a home win over Robert Morris (Jan. 21).

// … saw their 3OT victory over Cleveland State featured on ESPN’s SportsCenter as Scott Van Pelt’s “Best Thing I Saw Today”.

// … earn a 98.7 defensive efficiency in league play, according to KenPom, the best in the Horizon League.

// … finished with 14 games of double-digit steals.

// … gave up 69.6 points per game, the sixth time as a Division I member they’ve finished a season allowing less than 70 points per game.

// … had eight games where they committed 10 or fewer turnovers.

// … saw Jon Coffman named the Horizon League Coach of the Year. He now owns two coaching honors, winning the 2016 Summit League Coach of the Year honor.

PORTUGAL & SPAIN TRIP:

// The ‘Dons traveled to Portugal and Spain in August.  Activities included a tuk tuk tour of Lisbon, attending an FC Barcelona soccer contest and a bike tour of Barcelona.

// The NCAA permits teams to take a foreign tour once every four years to allow student-athletes the opportunity to experience cultures abroad. The Mastodons traveled to Italy in 2018 and Canada in 2014. Jarred Godfrey went on both the Italy and the Portugal/Spain trips.

EVANSVILLE BASKETBALL PREVIEW

(THE ATHLETIC)

The Evansville Purple Aces waved goodbye to head coach Todd Lickliter after two seasons at the helm, the most recent of which ranked as the worst in program history over the past 25 years, per KenPom. Lickliter had taken over for Walter McCarty after the latter was let go following his own two-year stint. In those four seasons, the Purple Aces finished dead last in the Missouri Valley three times and amassed a conference record of 14-58 while achieving an overall mark of 35-84. This program needs saving, and the powers that be hope new head coach David Ragland is that savior. Ragland becomes Evansville’s third coach in five seasons and brings years of experience on the bench of fellow Valley schools Indiana State and Valparaiso, as well as Utah State and Butler, among others. Taking over a program that’s fallen on hard times can be a difficult endeavor, but Ragland is approaching his new situation with a calm, cool and collected attitude. “Challenges are what you allow them to be. My perspective is there are going to be challenges everywhere, but it’s how you respond that matters,” said Ragland. “For me, that’s responding to adversity in a mature way, so the young people do as they see and not told. If I’m mature, they will be too. The biggest challenge is mental.” Ragland will look to start to turn the tides of the Evansville program with the help of a young and inexperienced roster.

ROAD TO SUCCESS

Ragland’s mindset and approach to the game seems tailor-made for the Valley: “We want to defend and rebound. Those are non-negotiables,” he mandated. “If you can’t do either, you can’t get on the floor.” Defense, rebounding, and physicality have been hallmarks of the Valley for a long time. But Ragland also hopes to use his team’s defense to get out and run in the open floor. The Purple Aces will focus on getting tips, deflections and steals that turn into easy transition points the other way. “We want [the opposing team] to be different that night when they play against the Aces,” he explained. “If we can take away strengths and be active [on defense], we’ll get what we want on offense.” In the halfcourt, Ragland’s team will focus on attacking the rim and taking care of the ball. He wants a group of guys that are unselfish and play for the team versus the individual. With so many new faces taking on large roles, it’s likely he’ll find success getting buy-in to his philosophy. There isn’t a bonafide, proven alpha demanding 30 percent of the possessions. Blaise Beauchamp will be the closest thing to a go-to starter for the Aces. He started ten games last season (including the final nine) and shined during those contests. As a starter, Beauchamp averaged 12.4 points per game and had a 29-point outburst against Indiana State on Feb. 10. Beauchamp will be joined in the backcourt by walk-on Gage Bobe, a 6-0 senior that, despite his non-scholarship status, Ragland expects to play a key role. Bobe is the only player on the roster who is entering his fourth season with the Evansville program. Up front, Evansville returns two players with starting experience. Preston Phillips and Antoine Smith Jr. will combine to form a significant chunk of the frontcourt rotation. Smith is a long, stretch big who can run the floor and pull slower defenders to the perimeter. He had a six-game stretch last year where he tallied 11.5 points per contest while making 16 triples at 55.2 percent. Phillips also has excel[1]lent length, but he is more of a garbage man-type who is active on the glass and offers more rim protection defensively. Ragland added depth to his rotation by bringing in four transfers this offseason. UNLV transfer Marvin Coleman II will hope to be fully ready after dealing with injuries and illness last season. Coleman started 20 games for the Runnin’ Rebels back in 2019-20 and averaged 6.9 points and 4.8 rebounds per contest. Alabama State transfer Kenny Strawbridge Jr. should fight for prime minutes on the wing. He was a two-year starter for ASU and was an effective two-way player in the SWAC. Bolstering Evansville’s deep frontcourt rotation are Akron transfer Sekou Kalle and Indian Hills junior college transfer Yacine Toumi. Ragland says it will be difficult to keep Kalle off the floor. He’s Evansville’s biggest player, and the program has suffered from a lack of size in recent years as Lickliter gravitated more towards skilled forwards. Toumi comes from a JUCO powerhouse and will add size and athleticism.

POTENTIAL POTHOLES

The loss of four full-time starters hurts for a team with a ton of new pieces and limited in-game experience. At times, guards Shamar Givance and Jawaun Newton were Evansville’s only source of offense, so it begs the question: how will this team score consistently? The Aces lack proven creators and shooting. While their front[1]court is long and possesses considerable upside, their back[1]court leaves much to be desired on paper. Evansville was already the Valley’s worst offensive team in 2021-22 and a bottom 20 team nationally. Second shots may not be the answer, either. Evansville was the worst offensive rebounding team in the country last season, some of which was by design as Lickliter preferred to get back in transition over crashing the glass. But given the number of outside shots the Aces took in 2021-22 (13th highest rate in the nation), it should have resulted in more second chances. Ragland’s addition of size and a more aggressive mindset should help this deficiency, but the questions of shooting and scoring linger. Further, it’s a tough year to be a team in transition in the Valley. Most squads in the league are established with a ton of pieces returning. Besides Evansville, only two other schools underwent coaching changes, and few teams lost more production than these Aces.

KEY DEPARTURES

SHAMAR GIVANCE (13.7 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 3.9 apg)

JAWAUN NEWTON (12.7 ppg, 5.4 rpg, 1.2 spg)

NOAH FREDERKING (7.2 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 1.1 spg)

EVAN KUHLMAN (7.0 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 1.7 apg)

BLAKE SISLEY (6.0 ppg, 1.5 rpg, 0.3 apg)

KEY NEWCOMERS

MARVIN COLEMAN (transfer, UNLV)

KENNY STRAWBRIDGE (transfer, Alabama State)

SEKOU KALLE (transfer, Akron)

YACINE TOUMI (Indian Hills CC)

CHRIS MONCRIEF (freshman, The Kiski School)

THE X-FACTOR

Despite being the leading returning scorer, Beauchamp is also Evansville’s X-factor this season. Ragland has great expectations for the slender 6-3 guard in his second year. “His numbers and shooting percentage will be better,” said Ragland. “Shot selection is the key with him. His shot selection was not the best last year because when he had the ball it was often late in the shot clock. His efficiency will improve.” Ragland also thinks any of his freshmen can quickly earn minutes. Zaveion Chism-Okoh, a 6-3 guard who spent a season at Link Year Prep, has been “way more athletic than expected,” according to Ragland. He could have an impact as an on-ball defender and slasher. Gabe Spinelli is reportedly physically ahead of most true freshmen and also brings a solid dose of athleticism. Logan McIntire, a 6-4 local product out of Indiana, is a hard worker and has already had his moments in practice. Chris Moncrief is a long, physical wing who has a ton of versatility and a college-ready frame. Ragland also added Matus Malovec, a 6-6 Slovakian with a strong feel for the game.

THE OUTLOOK

Ragland has his work cut out for him in year one as the Aces’ head honcho. But the young coach is optimistic about the program’s future and might be just a little bit more invested than other candidates given that he grew up in Evansville. Step one in his burgeoning coaching journey: establish a winning culture. “The biggest thing for everyone to understand, when you take over a program, everyone talks about culture, and that’s the work you put in every day, the energy you work with every day,” explained Ragland. “We’re slowly making progress toward that. A lot of people will see a different look for the Aces, because of our approach, our attitude, and willingness to be coached. We have a good group of talent but also unbelievable people.”

ACES ADVANCE TO MVC SEMIFINALS WITH 1-0 WIN OVER SIUE

EVANSVILLE – Sophomore forward Jose Vivas scored a 75th minute winner to lead the University of Evansville men’s soccer team to a 1-0 win over SIUE in the Missouri Valley Conference Championship quarterfinals on Sunday afternoon at Arad McCutchan Stadium in Evansville.

Vivas got on the board for the fourth time this season with his late second half goal, giving the Spaniard his second game-winning goal of the season. For the eighth-time this year, graduate goalkeeper Alex Vidizzoni shutout his opponent, moving him into a tie for fourth in single-season shutouts.

The opening half featured an eager Evansville side taking control possession as the Aces out-shot the Cougars, 9-4, in the first 45 minutes. Inside the first 10 minutes, Vidizzoni was forced to make one of his four saves, stopping a shot from SIUE’s Myles Sophanavong in the ninth minute. Evansville created a string of opportunities near the quarter-hour mark of the first half, generating four corner kicks and recording three shots. One of those shots, coming off the head of senior Evan Dekker, appeared to have given the Aces the early lead, but was ruled to have been cleared off the line by a Cougar defender. The 24th minute saw another chance on-frame from Evansville as senior Ethan Garvey sent a shot on-goal that forced a save from SIUE keeper Sam Gomez. In the three minutes before the break, Evansville recorded three more chances, two coming from freshman Ola Arntsen, but the Aces could not get their breakthrough before the halftime whistle.

After controlling much of the possession in the opening 45 minutes, Evansville came rolling out of halftime and took control to the tune of another 9-4 advantage on shots. Senior Carlos Barcia tested Gomez in the 47th minute with a shot that the Cougar keeper saved. The Aces put two more shots on target in the 71st minute, but it would take four more minutes before Evansville was delivered its well-earned breakthrough. On another corner, Barcia slipped a cross in to Vivas just inside the 18 and the forward quickly struck the ball, going for the top center of goal and finding the back of the net to provide Evansville with a 1-0 lead. Following the opening goal, Evansville locked-in defensively, preventing the Cougars from any opportunities as the Aces secured the win to advance to the MVC Championship semifinals.

The Aces will continue their postseason journey against No. 5 seed Belmont on Thursday afternoon at 3 PM in Springfield, Mo.

WOMEN’S BASKETBALL SET TO OPEN SEASON MONDAY AT CENTRAL MICHIGAN

Valparaiso (0-0, 0-0 MVC)

Game #1 – Nov. 7, 2022 – 6 p.m. CT

at Central Michigan (0-0, 0-0 MAC)

McGuirk Arena (5,300) – Mt. Pleasant, Mich.

Next Up in Valpo Basketball: The Valpo women’s basketball team kicks off the 2022-23 season on Monday evening on the road, traveling to Mt. Pleasant, Mich. to face off against Central Michigan for the second straight season. The game against the Chippewas is the first of three against MAC opponents in the Beacons’ nonconference slate.

Previously: Valpo chose to play a pair of closed scrimmages in the preseason in lieu of open exhibition games.

Following Valpo Basketball: Streaming Video: ESPN3

Radio: WVUR (95.1 FM, Valparaiso)

Streaming Audio: TuneIn app

Links for live coverage: Available via ValpoAthletics.com

Head Coach Mary Evans: Mary Evans is in her fifth year at the helm of the program in 2022-23 and owns a record of 48-68. Evans has made an impact on the program in her first four years, raising the team’s level of play to be competitive in a strong Missouri Valley Conference. Evans’ preferred style of play has been a big part of the program’s turnaround, as Valpo has led the MVC in 3-pointers made per game in each of the last three seasons and in steals per game in two of the last three years.

Series Notes: Central Michigan holds a 5-2 advantage in the all-time series over Valpo, with the Chippewas’ five wins coming in each of the last five meetings. Last season, the two squads met for the first time in 13 years as Valpo hosted CMU on Nov. 14. The Beacons led that matchup 49-44 entering the fourth quarter, but the Chippewas out-scored Valpo 21-12 over the final 10 minutes to earn a 65-61 victory. Leah Earnest led the Beacons in that game, coming off the bench to score a career-best 17 points on 7-of-9 shooting while also pulling down six rebounds.

@ValpoWBB…

…and @ValleyHoops

– Valpo was picked to finish in 10th place in the MVC preseason poll, totaling 197 points, just 10 points behind Evansville.

– Valpo is in its sixth season as a member of the Missouri Valley Conference.

– The Valley was ranked 10th in conference NET last year, was ranked seventh nationally in conference NET in 2020-21 and was eighth nationally in conference RPI in 2019-20.

…looking back at last year

– Valpo finished last year with an 11-19 overall record, but was strong in MVC play, going 9-9 in conference and finishing in sixth place – both of which match the program’s best since joining the Valley.

– The Beacons registered the first win at Drake and the first win at Bradley in program history.

– Valpo swept the season series over Drake, the program’s first two wins ever against the Bulldogs.

– The Beacons also tallied four top-100 wins within Valley play.

– Grace White was named MVC Sixth Player of the Year – the program’s first major postseason award since joining the Valley. Shay Frederick was a First Team All-MVC choice, while White was an All-Defensive Team selection and Olivia Brown earned a spot on the All-Newcomer Team.

…looking ahead

– Valpo won’t hit the road again for nearly three weeks after Monday’s game, as the Beacons’ next three games are all at the ARC.

– Valpo hosts Southern Miss Nov. 12, Eastern Illinois Nov. 16 and UAB Nov. 21.

…on the road

– Valpo will play 14 true road games this season, including four in nonconference action.

– The Beacons posted a 5-11 record in true road games last season.

…in season openers

– Valpo dropped its season opener to Miami (Ohio) last season, 85-60.

– Valpo’s last win in a season opener came over IU Kokomo to open the 2017-18 campaign, 81-47, while its last win over a D-I opponent in a season opener was a 91-57 win over Butler to open the 2014-15 season.

@CMUWBBall

– Central Michigan posted a 4-25 record last season and went 2-18 in MAC play.

– The Chippewas were picked last in the MAC preseason poll.

– Prior to last season, CMU had advanced to four consecutive NCAA Tournaments and had made six straight postseason appearances.

Replacing Production

– It will be a revamped squad on the court for the Beacons in 2022-23.

– Valpo returns just 32.1% of their scoring, 38.1% of their rebounding, 24.4% of their assists and 35.9% of their minutes played from last year’s squad.

– Valpo lost its three leading scorers, four of its five leading rebounders and its three highest assist talliers from the 2021-22 team.

Who’s Back

– Seven letterwinners return for the Beacons in 2022-23.

– Included among that group are four regulars from last year’s team, highlighted by senior Olivia Brown, who was an MVC All-Newcomer choice last season.

– Brown averaged 6.6 points/game and hit at a conference-best 39.8% clip from the 3-point line. Brown stepped up her game within Valley play, averaging 9.5 points/game in MVC action and hitting at a 42.4% rate from deep.

– Also returning from last year’s starting group is junior wing Leah Earnest. Earnest averaged 7.7 points/game and 4.6 rebounds/game in 2021-22, ranking second on the team in rebounding.

– She paced Valpo on the boards nine times and scored in double figures on nine occasions, including a pair of 17-point efforts.

– Fifth years Maya Dunson (3.6 ppg, 2.1 rpg) and Ilysse Pitts (1.4 ppg, 1.4 rpg) also saw regular action last season.

– Juniors Ava Interrante and Jayda Johnston and sophomore Katie Beyer look to take advantage of the available playing time entering this year.

Who’s New

– While Valpo has three freshmen on this year’s team, none of them are traditional true freshmen.

– Both Ella Van Weelden and Lovie Malone redshirted last season in their first year on campus.

– Meanwhile, Ali Saunders came to campus at the holiday break and spent the spring semester with the team.

– The Beacons also added a pair of transfers to the roster for this season.

– Emma Tecca spent three seasons at Akron, but used just one season of eligibility. Tecca hit at a 45.2% clip from behind the 3-point line in 2020-21 — a mark which ranks among the best single-season clips in Akron history.

– Olivia Sims was at Oakland last season, where she hit at a 46.9% clip from the 3-point line in 12 appearances. Sims scored in double figures four times, including a 12-point performance against Michigan State.

Raining Threes

– In her time at the helm of the Valpo program, head coach Mary Evans’ teams have become known for their propensity to shoot 3-pointers.

– Evans’ first four seasons at the helm saw Valpo’s top-four single-season total 3-pointers made, including a program-record 276 in her first season in 2018-19 – a mark which ranks seventh in MVC history.

– Valpo has ranked among the top-35 in the nation in 3-pointers/game all three years, with the 2020-21 squad setting a program single-season record by averaging 9.0 triples/game.

– Prior to Evans’ arrival, Valpo had made 14 or more 3-pointers in a game just nine times in program history.

– In her four seasons at the helm, Valpo owns 11 more games with 14+ triples, including twice matching the program single-game record of 17.

– The style of play isn’t a surprise if you follow the coaching tree. Evans coached under Bob Boldon at Ohio for five years before getting the head job at Valpo, and Boldon was a former assistant coach at FGCU under their legendary head coach, Karl Smesko, whose teams have ranked among the top-5 in the nation in 3-pointers made in each of the last 10 years.

Top 100 Wins

– Valpo has made a habit of knocking off top-100 opponents in MVC play over the last few seasons.

– Four times in MVC play in 2021-22, the Beacons earned a victory over a top-100 team.

– Valpo has nine top-100 NET/RPI wins in Valley action over the last three seasons.

– Prior to its Feb. 16, 2020 win at Illinois State – its first top-100 win in conference play since joining the Valley – Valpo had gone nearly seven years without a top-100 victory.

Down 10? No Problem

– Not surprisingly given their penchant for the 3-point shot, a double-digit deficit isn’t a death sentence for Valpo.

– Last season, five of the Beacon’s nine conference wins saw Valpo overcome a double-figure deficit at some points during the game.

– Valpo has now rallied from down 10 or more to win 15 times in head coach Mary Evans first four years at the helm of the program.

Same Alma Maters

– While there are 12 players on the 2022-23 Valpo women’s basketball roster, there are only 10 high schools represented.

– Fifth year Maya Dunson and redshirt freshman Lovie Malone are both alums of Wayne (Ohio) H.S.

– Junior Ava Interrante and sophomore Katie Beyer were teammates at McHenry (Ill.) H.S.

VALPARAISO BASKETBALL PREVIEW

(THE ATHLETIC)

The newly-nicknamed Valparaiso Beacons head into the 2022-23 season following two consecutive sub-.500 performances. Last season saw Valpo go 6-12 in the always-competitive Missouri Valley, but, as is typical for the league, the Beacons were in a smattering of close games. A couple different bounces, and their season could have looked quite different. Valpo participated in five overtime contests in conference play, winning three of them. In regulation, the Beacons lost two games by one possession and another by two possessions. In the nonconference slate, Valpo lost once in overtime and twice by one possession in regulation. Margins were razor-thin. To remain competitive in so many games last season was really quite remarkable given Valpo’s myriad of injury and eligibility issues. Only three players played in every game, and two of Valpo’s most crucial pieces, Kobe King and Thomas Kithier, missed over ten contests each. Point guard Trevor Anderson missed the final 11 games (and 13 of the final 17). All-MVC big man Ben Krikke missed the first three games of the year. Some of that is bad luck, but head coach Matt Lottich said strength and conditioning was a major focus this offseason. His guys have been working on their strength and flexibility to better prepare for the grind of a full season. With a considerable amount of inexperience on the roster and what might already be a thin rotation, Valpo will need all hands on deck to be successful in Valley play.

ROAD TO SUCCESS

Lottich has put last year in the rearview. Despite the loss of five key pieces, he believes the Beacons can field a competitive team and be scrappy in conference play. “I like our balance, our recipe,” he said. “We have two guys who can score plus complementary guys who can play a role well.” Valpo played through the block last season, ranking 31st nationally in rate of plays finished via post-ups (Synergy), and that should largely continue in 2022-23. “We want paint touches, which can be on the pass, the post, the dribble,” Lottich explained. “We want to get near the basket in a lot of ways to make the defense look and protect their rim.” Krikke will be the Beacons’ offensive fulcrum. A 6-9, 235-pound forward, Krikke is a blue-collar, tough and physical lefty who fits the stereotypical Valley style. He garnered third-team All-MVC accolades last season and led the Beacons in usage. Krikke is excellent at getting deep position down low and tough to stop with his back to the basket. With Krikke and Kithier, Lottich often played two traditional bigs last season. That was a relative rarity compared to the rest of the Valley, where many teams deployed more wing-types as their nominal 4-men. If Lottich chooses that route again, freshman Maximus Nelson could hear his number called early in his career. Nelson, a 6-8 forward out of Appleton, Wisconsin, isn’t quite a “traditional” big, as he can step out and play on the perimeter, but he gives the Beacons the true size that Lottich craves. Returners Emil Freese-Vilien (6-10) and Joe Hedstrom (7-0), as well as JUCO transfer Jerome Palm (6-10) and freshman Ibra Bayu (6-8), provide plenty of additional size up front. Bayu and Palm are close friends and both products from the Netherlands. Each will compete for starts and be key pieces to the rotation. On the perimeter, Valpo will have a go-to scorer in fifth-year guard Kobe King, a former Wisconsin transfer and top 200 recruit. King made the Valley’s all-newcomer team last season and had a strong case for all-conference by tallying 14.0 points per game. Those who watched King play could see he was a clear difference-maker at this level. At times, it looked as though King was simply too good for the Valley. He could get anywhere he wanted with his superior strength and ability to stop on a dime and rise above defenders. He gives Valpo a “get out of jail free card” late in the shot clock and can be a go-to bucket getter throughout games. Per Lottich, King has trimmed down this offseason and appears to be in fantastic shape. He should push for a first-team all-conference spot and could be one of the more dominant players in the league this season. Lottich also enlisted help from the Division II ranks, bringing in transfers Nick Edwards and Quin[1]ton Green. Edwards was a stat sheet stuffer at Glenville State, averaging 17.1 points, 6.2 rebounds and 7.9 assists per game in 11 contests. Before injuries cut his season short, Edwards was leading the country in assists. He’ll slide into a point guard role on day one and give Valpo a quick, athletic playmaker with excellent body control at the point of attack. Green, meanwhile, is a pure shooter. He was a near-40 percent 3-point marksman during his four[1]year career at Cedarville. Last season, he tallied 1.123 points per possession on spot-ups, good for the 85th percentile nationally per Synergy. Preston Ruedinger, a 6-2 sophomore, will be a key cog in the backcourt rotation after unexpectedly seeing the floor as a rookie. He earned MVC all-freshman honors and rarely makes mistakes with the ball in his hands. Outside of Ruedinger, Valpo’s backcourt options consist of Darius DeAveiro, Connor Barrett and Cam Palesse. DeAveiro saw significant run during his rookie season, even starting three games late in the year. He’ll need to improve his shooting and ball security to see increased play[1]ing time. Barrett, a 6-6 wing, was used sparingly after starting 13 games as a freshman in 2020- 21. Palesse took a redshirt year last season.

POTENTIAL POTHOLES

Lottich was disappointed in his team’s defensive effort last season, usually a strength of the program. “We didn’t play enough consistent defense,” he said. “You can offer excuses: banged up, lost starting 5-man and PG for majority of the year, but we need to make a better effort to guard. We want to stay healthier and that starts in the weight room.” Valpo ranked 229th nationally and ninth in the Valley in adjusted defensive efficiency (KenPom). That Valley mark was the school’s worst since joining the conference in 2017-18. Scrappiness, physicality and tough defense are pillars of the Valpo on-court brand. For the Beacons to have success, this end must see marked improvement. Depth could be an issue as well. Valpo lost four very good players in Anderson, Kithier, Kevion Taylor, and Sheldon Edwards from a season ago, and only brought in two D2 transfers plus one freshman to replace them. The Beacons’ lack of depth isn’t concentrated to just one position, either — both the backcourt and the frontcourt have concerns. If the injury bug rears its ugly head again, the Beacons will be in trouble. Guys like King and Krikke can only carry them so far.

KEY DEPARTURES

KEVION TAYLOR (12.8 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 1.6 apg)

SHELDON EDWARDS (11.4 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 1.1 spg)

THOMAS KITHIER (10.1 ppg, 6.6 rpg, 2.2 apg)

TREVOR ANDERSON (9.2 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 2.4 apg)

ERON GORDON (3.2 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 1.1 apg)

KEY NEWCOMERS

NICK EDWARDS (transfer, Glenville State)

QUINTON GREEN (transfer, Cedarville)

MAXIMUS NELSON (freshman, Appleton North)

THE X-FACTOR

What Ruedinger did last season likely went unnoticed by 99 percent of the country. But those close followers of Valpo basketball know just how important he was to the team. “I thought Ruedinger became our leader by the end of year – and you’re talking about a walk-on freshman,” raved Lottich. “He does so many things to help you win. His toughness, team first attitude, and selflessness will play a huge role. He’ll do a lot of things that go unnoticed.” Ruedinger isn’t a world-beater by any stretch. He’ll never be the most talented guy on the floor – or maybe even the ninth-most talented. But he is steady, works hard and will do the little things that contribute to winning.

THE OUTLOOK

On paper, Valpo’s roster sets them on a path towards another bottom-tier Valley finish. But Lottich’s teams have always been more about the sum of the parts, rather than the individual pieces themselves. The Beacons have their stud scorer in King, they have a reliable post presence in Krikke. If Edwards proves to be an All-MVC-caliber point guard and the wings can open up the floor with spot shooting, Valpo could surprise some folks in conference play this season.

ANDERSON, NORFOLK REPRESENT VALPO ON MVC ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM

Valpo soccer seniors Allie Anderson (Wheaton, Ill./Wheaton Warrenville South [Xavier]) and Nicole Norfolk (Menomonee Falls, Wis./Divine Savior Holy Angels) represented the Beacons on the MVC All-Tournament Team, as announced at the tournament’s conclusion on Sunday afternoon.

Anderson returned from injury, coming off the bench to play the final 63 minutes of the semifinal match with Murray State in the midfield. Her impact on the game was immediate, as after being out-shot by the Racers 6-2 in the first 27 minutes of the match, Valpo out-shot MSU 20-11 with Anderson on the field.

After missing the final three-plus matches of the regular season due to injury, Norfolk returned to the starting lineup in her familiar center back spot against the Racers in the semifinals. The senior was her usual strong presence in the back, helping hold MSU to just one goal.

ANDERSON ATHLETICS: https://athletics.anderson.edu/landing/index

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/

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/

ST. FRANCIS ATHLETICS: https://www.saintfranciscougars.com/landing/index

IU KOKOMO ATHLETICS: https://iukcougars.com/

IU SOUTH BEND ATHLETICS: https://iusbtitans.com/

INDIANA TECH ATHLETICS: https://indianatechwarriors.com/index.aspx

GRACE ATHLETICS: https://gclancers.com/

GOSHEN ATHLETICS: https://goleafs.net/

HOLY CROSS ATHLETICS: https://www.hcsaints.com/index.php

TAYLOR ATHLETICS: https://www.taylortrojans.com/

ST. MARY OF THE WOODS ATHLETICS: https://smwcathletics.com/

VINCENNES ATHLETICS: https://govutrailblazers.com/landing/index

NFL STANDINGS

American Football Conference
East Division
 WLTPctGBPFPAHomeRoadvs. Confvs. DivStreak
Buffalo Bills620.7500.02201183-0-03-2-04-2-00-2-01 L
New York Jets630.6670.51961762-3-04-0-05-3-02-1-01 W
Miami Dolphins630.6670.52132243-1-03-2-04-2-02-1-03 W
New England Patriots540.5561.52031662-2-03-2-04-2-01-1-02 W
 
West Division
 WLTPctGBPFPAHomeRoadvs. Confvs. DivStreak
Kansas City Chiefs620.7500.02431893-1-03-1-03-2-02-0-02 W
Los Angeles Chargers530.6251.01842062-2-03-1-04-2-02-1-01 W
Denver Broncos350.3753.01211322-2-01-3-02-4-00-2-01 W
Las Vegas Raiders260.2504.01832012-1-00-5-02-4-01-2-02 L
 
North Division
 WLTPctGBPFPAHomeRoadvs. Confvs. DivStreak
Baltimore Ravens530.6250.02081832-2-03-1-04-2-02-0-02 W
Cincinnati Bengals540.5560.52281853-1-02-3-02-3-00-3-01 W
Cleveland Browns350.3752.02001992-3-01-2-02-4-02-1-01 W
Pittsburgh Steelers260.2503.01201971-2-01-4-01-5-01-1-02 L
 
South Division
 WLTPctGBPFPAHomeRoadvs. Confvs. DivStreak
Tennessee Titans530.6250.01491582-1-03-2-04-2-03-0-01 L
Indianapolis Colts351.3892.01321832-2-01-3-13-4-11-3-13 L
Jacksonville Jaguars360.3332.51991782-3-01-3-03-3-01-2-01 W
Houston Texans161.1883.51331830-3-11-3-01-4-11-1-13 L
 
National Football Conference
East Division
 WLTPctGBPFPAHomeRoadvs. Confvs. DivStreak
Philadelphia Eagles8001.0000.02251354-0-04-0-05-0-02-0-08 W
Dallas Cowboys620.7502.01831334-1-02-1-05-2-02-1-02 W
New York Giants620.7502.01631573-1-03-1-03-2-00-1-01 L
Washington Commanders450.4444.51591922-3-02-2-02-4-00-2-01 L
 
West Division
 WLTPctGBPFPAHomeRoadvs. Confvs. DivStreak
Seattle Seahawks630.6670.02412203-1-03-2-04-3-02-1-04 W
San Francisco 49ers440.5001.51761472-1-02-3-04-2-03-0-01 W
Los Angeles Rams350.3752.51311732-3-01-2-03-4-01-2-02 L
Arizona Cardinals360.3333.02032411-4-02-2-02-5-00-3-02 L
 
North Division
 WLTPctGBPFPAHomeRoadvs. Confvs. DivStreak
Minnesota Vikings710.8750.01931614-0-03-1-06-1-03-0-06 W
Green Bay Packers360.3334.51541882-2-01-4-02-4-01-2-05 L
Chicago Bears360.3334.51872162-2-01-4-01-5-00-2-02 L
Detroit Lions260.2505.01882342-3-00-3-02-4-01-1-01 W
 
South Division
 WLTPctGBPFPAHomeRoadvs. Confvs. DivStreak
Tampa Bay Buccaneers450.4440.01621642-3-02-2-04-2-02-1-01 W
Atlanta Falcons450.4440.02172253-2-01-3-03-3-01-2-01 L
New Orleans Saints350.3750.51992002-3-01-2-02-4-01-2-01 W
Carolina Panthers270.2222.01792282-3-00-4-02-5-02-1-02 L

NBA STANDINGS

Eastern Conference
Atlantic Division
 WLPctGBHomeRoadDivConfLast 10Streak
Boston63.6673-13-22-06-36-32 W
Toronto64.6000.54-12-31-25-36-41 W
New York45.4442.03-21-31-14-44-51 L
Brooklyn46.4002.52-42-21-04-34-62 W
Philadelphia46.4002.51-43-21-34-54-62 L
 
Central Divison
 WLPctGBHomeRoadDivConfLast 10Streak
Milwaukee901.0007-02-02-06-09-09 W
Cleveland81.8891.04-04-12-07-18-18 W
Chicago56.4555.03-22-41-15-54-62 L
Indiana45.4445.02-22-31-14-44-51 W
Detroit28.2007.52-30-50-41-82-83 L
 
Southeast Division
 WLPctGBHomeRoadDivConfLast 10Streak
Atlanta63.6673-13-21-14-36-32 W
Miami46.4002.53-31-31-44-61 L
Washington46.4002.52-32-34-54-62 L
Charlotte37.3003.51-32-41-11-43-74 L
Orlando28.2004.52-20-61-11-52-81 L
 
Western Conference
Northwest Division
 WLPctGBHomeRoadDivConfLast 10Streak
Utah83.7274-04-32-18-37-32 W
Portland63.6671.03-23-11-06-26-31 L
Denver63.6671.04-02-33-26-36-32 W
Minnesota55.5002.54-31-22-15-45-51 W
Oklahoma City45.4443.03-21-30-43-44-52 L
 
Pacific Division
 WLPctGBHomeRoadDivConfLast 10Streak
Phoenix72.7786-11-12-07-27-21 W
LA Clippers55.5002.51-34-22-15-55-51 L
Sacramento35.3753.51-32-20-20-43-51 W
Golden State37.3004.53-10-62-12-33-75 L
LA Lakers27.2225.02-40-30-22-62-72 L
 
Southwest Division
 WLPctGBHomeRoadDivConfLast 10Streak
Memphis73.7004-03-31-13-37-33 W
Dallas53.6251.04-11-21-12-35-33 W
New Orleans54.5561.52-13-31-03-35-41 L
San Antonio55.5002.02-33-22-35-53 L
Houston19.1006.01-20-70-11-71-96 L

NHL STANDINGS

Eastern Conference
 GPWLOTLPtsROWGFGAHomeRoadL10
Boston Bruins12102020951306-0-04-2-08-2-0
New Jersey Devils1293018944314-2-05-1-09-1-0
Carolina Hurricanes1283117639343-2-05-1-16-3-1
Detroit Red Wings1273216737355-1-12-2-15-3-2
Toronto Maple Leafs1374216737345-1-02-3-25-3-2
New York Rangers1364315636393-2-33-2-04-3-3
Tampa Bay Lightning1274115740383-1-14-3-06-3-1
Florida Panthers1375115643423-0-14-5-05-4-1
Philadelphia Flyers1163214628283-1-13-2-15-3-2
10 New York Islanders1275014741304-2-03-3-06-4-0
11 Buffalo Sabres1275014749384-2-03-3-06-4-0
12 Washington Capitals1356212535383-2-12-4-14-4-2
13 Montreal Canadiens1256111534403-3-02-3-14-5-1
14 Pittsburgh Penguins1246210442443-1-11-5-12-6-2
15 Ottawa Senators114708438384-3-00-4-04-6-0
16 Columbus Blue Jackets123906330552-5-01-4-03-7-0
 
Western Conference
 GPWLOTLPtsROWGFGAHomeRoadL10
Vegas Golden Knights131120221146275-1-06-1-08-2-0
Dallas Stars1283117846274-1-04-2-16-3-1
Seattle Kraken1374216745402-3-15-1-16-3-1
Winnipeg Jets1173115733274-1-03-2-16-3-1
Los Angeles Kings1476115649533-3-04-3-15-4-1
Colorado Avalanche1164113540312-1-14-3-05-4-1
Edmonton Oilers1275014746424-5-03-0-06-4-0
Chicago Blackhawks1255212534394-2-11-3-15-3-2
Calgary Flames1054111532334-4-11-0-05-4-1
10 Minnesota Wild1155111435402-4-03-1-15-4-1
11 Nashville Predators1256111434402-3-13-3-03-6-1
12 Arizona Coyotes114619431451-2-13-4-04-5-1
13 Vancouver Canucks123639341492-3-11-3-23-4-3
14 Anaheim Ducks134819239612-2-02-6-13-6-1
15 San Jose Sharks143839336491-5-32-3-03-4-3
16 St. Louis Blues93606321351-4-02-2-03-6-0

FOOTBALL HISTORY/BIRTHDAY’S

Voters Bring Pro Gridiron Back to the Keystone State

November 7, 1933 – Pennsylvania voters overturn a blue law, by permitting sports to be played on Sundays. This was big news for both the new franchises of the Philadelphia Eagles and the Pittsburgh Pirates, who would later be called the Steelers. The NFL awarded franchises to both cities earlier in 1933 based on the speculation that the voters would choose repealing the Pennsylvania Sunday Blue Laws in that year’s general election. Why were Sundays so important to the NFL? An article on the website ellwoodcityledger.com from January 2015 has the answer. Being able to play on Sundays was imperative for professional football at the time because college football, which monopolized autumn Saturdays, was more popular than the pro game, and by a relatively wide margin. It wouldn’t be until decades later that the pro game would be even close to that of the college game. The article brings up an interesting point that even though the very first paid pro player was in the Pittsburgh area, Pudge Heffelfinger, had been paid $500 in 1892 for a game. But alas there were no NFL teams in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania until these cities in 1933 were awarded franchises.

Football History Headlines

We want scores!

November 7, 1943 – Briggs Stadium, Detroit Michigan – The last scoreless tie in the NFL occurred when the Detroit Lions hosted the New York Football Giants in front of a crowd of 16,992 fans. The website f64sports.com tells us that the weather and field conditions were every bit as responsible as the defenses and inept offenses as it was a rainy day with muddy sloppy track on the turf.

Browns have a Record Day

November 7, 1954 – Cleveland Browns’ win by their largest margin of victory in the crushing defeat of the Washington Redskins by the score of 62-3. That same game, the Browns, Chet Hanulak set a club record with 7 punt returns according to onthisday.com. https://www.onthisday.com/sport/day/november/7

A Pair of Holy War Games

November 7, 1987 – South Bend, Indiana – The third edition of the College Football Holy War took place as Notre Dame defeated Boston College by the score of 32-25 per onthisday.com.

November 7, 1992 – South Bend, Indiana – The College Football Holy War arises once again as the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame overpowered the Boston College Eagles 54-7. On this Day.com

HOF Birthdays

QB – Jake Gibbs

November 7, 1938 – Grenada, Mississippi – Marked the birth of Jake Gibbs, a quarterback that played for Ole Miss. Jake played for the Rebels from 1958 through 1960 and Ole Miss held a record of a 29-3-1 record during his time there. The website footballfoundation.org informs the reader that in his senior season of 1960, the team was 10-0-1 and was voted national champions by the Football Writers Association. Gibbs was a unanimous choice for All-American quarterback. The National Football Foundation selected Jake Gibbs to enter into their College Football Hall of Fame in 1995. After school Jake became a professional athlete but i wasn’t on the gridiron despite his collegiate success. He played 10 years as a catcher with the New York Yankees, 1962-71.

SPORTS IN NUMBERS:

44 – 39 – 1 – 32 – 14 – 30

November 7, 1933 – Pennsylvania voters overturn blue law, by permitting Sunday sports. In anticipation of this the NFL had already awarded franchises to both Pittsburgh and Philadelphia to start the season. The Eagles started the season with (4) Bye weeks and then two away games and a Wednesday evening home contest before having their first Sunday home game on November 12. The Steelers likewise played (4) Wednesday home games and two away games before hosting the Brooklyn Dodgers on Sunday November 12 at Forbes Field.

November 7, 1954 – Cleveland Browns’ Number 44, Chet Hanulak set a franchise record with 7 punt returns. Cleveland won by their largest margin of victory (59 points) beating the Washington Redskins 62-3

November 7, 1957 – Phillies pitcher Number 39, Jack Sanford won the National League Rookie of Year

November 7, 1962 – Glenn Hall, Number 1 for the Chicago Black Hawks set the NHL record of 503 consecutive games as goalie

November 7, 1963 – New York Yankee catcher Elston Howard, Number 32 became the first African-American to be voted American League Most Valuable Player

November 7, 1978 – Boston Red Sox Jim Rice, Number 14 won the American League MVPNovember 7, 1989 – Baltimore Orioles Gregg Olson, Number 30 became the first relief pitcher to win the American League Rookie of Year Award.