New Mexico, move over. You have company. As bad as our brackets were screwed by Harvard on Thursday (and two people in the Dime clan had the Lobos going to at least the Final Four), the Hoyas might’ve done even more damage … Florida Gulf Coast pinned for a higher seed. Then they went out and proved it last night with a convincing 78-68 win over No. 2-seeded Georgetown. Getting 24 points from Atlantic Sun player of the year Sherwood Brown and 23 from fellow guard Bernard Thompson, as well as a couple of NASTY lobs, this one wasn’t even really close. FGC went up by as many as 19. We can’t remember the last night a team this highly-rated got clubbed so hard during their first game of the tournament … Otto Porter Jr., G-town’s future first-round pick, went 5-for-17, finishing with 13 points and 11 boards … Seth Curry rained in 26 points against Albany in No. 2-seeded Duke’s 12-point win. Mason Plumlee followed that up with 23 points and eight boards, but we’re still not sure what to think about Plumlee’s NBA potential. We did name him as one of the 15 must-watch prospects in March Madness, and sometimes he looks like a David Lee clone. Yesterday afternoon he caught a 30-foot lob from Quinn Cook along the baseline that would’ve given Vitale a heart attack if he had been calling the game. Plumlee also had a nasty no-look, over-the-shoulder dish to Josh Hairston for a layup. But then at other times, he’d get one-on-one coverage in the post, make a nice move, and then blow a layup because he went up too soft … Marshall Henderson (6-for-21, 19 points) hit more parts of the rim yesterday without ever making anything than anyone we’ve ever seen. But when Sid from Toy Story did finally hit a shot in the second half, the energy in the entire building changed and a few moments later, Ole Miss cracked open their first lead against Wisconsin since the beginning of the game. That was part of a 20-8 run that turned the game around, eventually ending in the Rebels advancing, 57-46 … Who saw Carrot Top balling for the Badgers? … No. 4 Kansas State was upset by two against No. 13 La Salle after K-State’s Angel Rodriguez nearly dribbled out of bounds and then put up a Kobe special from behind the backboard that wasn’t close. Imagine having your season end that way, losing it for your squad because you completely botched the last possession … Andre Hollins (28 points, nine boards, five dimes) went crazy as No. 11 Minnesota blew out No. 6 UCLA. Shabazz Muhammad had 20 in the loss, despite having an added excuse: there are a lot of things that stand out about this article — the psycho-protective stereotypical dad, and the “colt breeding” aspect of the Muhammad family — but the most important aspect is the fact that Shabazz Muhammad is actually allegedly 20 years old instead of 19. Some don’t look at that as a big deal, but for younger players maturing at different rates, it makes a HUGE difference. Perfect example is O.J. Mayo. He was older for his age group, and matured faster. At 16, he looked like a potential franchise player. At 19, he still looked like a NBA All-Star. But by 22, he looked like just a solid pro. That extra year gave him a major headstart. Could it be the same with Muhammad, who physically dominated in high school and even at times this year? … We should’ve known not to trust N.C. State. They’re like the cats at middle school dances who think they’re too cool to dance, and then it’s the goofy dudes who end up with all the chicks because they were willing to step away from the wall. The Wolfpack have four legitimate NBA prospects, and yet for basically the entire game against Temple, they looked awful, eventually losing by four after Khalif Wyatt lit them up for 31 points … In other scores from yesterday’s March Madness, Doug McDermott was handing out elbows and ass-kickings (27 points, 11 boards) in No. 10 Creighton’s 67-63 win over Cincy; Ohio State advanced by 25 against Iona; P.J. Hairston led UNC with 23 in their seven-point victory over ‘Nova; No. 1 Kansas barely survived against Western Kentucky, setting up a game with rival North Carolina; Iowa State upset No. 7 Notre Dame by 18; Jamaal Franklin (21 points and eight boards) and San Diego State had no problems with Oklahoma, 70-55; No. 3 Florida destroyed Northwestern State by 32; Miami and Indiana both won big; and No. 7 Illinois won a crazy game against No. 10 Colorado by eight, a matchup that saw Illinois go up 16 at halftime, only to lose the lead and then regain it with a game-ending 21-5 run … Hit page 2 to see which big star returned to the NBA hardwood last night …
Tony Parker picked a perfect game to return to. Arriving super early – at least compared to the original diagnosis – Parker was huge in the Spurs’ 104-97 overtime win over the free-falling Jazz. He had 22 points, and was on the bench during a 17-2 run by Utah that opened up a lead during regulation. After San Antonio came back to retake the lead, Marvin Williams canned a triple to send it to overtime, where the Spurs dominated … Carmelo Anthony exploded for 37, but he wasn’t the star of New York’s five-point W over Toronto. Kenyon Martin made his first nine shots, didn’t miss a bucket until late in the fourth quarter, and finished with 19 points and 11 rebounds … The Miami Heat have hit 25 wins in a row, doing it for the third straight game by coming from behind. It wasn’t 27 this time, but Detroit took an 11-point lead in the first half before wilting in the second half, 103-89. LeBron James had his customary 29 points, eight rebounds and eight assists, and upped his ridiculous shooting to an even higher level (12-for-15) … Are the Mavs suddenly the Lakers top threat to steal the No. 8 seed in the West? We think they’ll just BARELY miss out on the postseason, but right now, they’re playing like a playoff squad, beating down Boston by 10 and getting an out-of-nowhere night from Brandan Wright (23 points, eight rebounds) … In other scores: Tyler Hansbrough (22 points, 12 boards) started, and then led the Pacers to a 102-78 destruction of Milwaukee; New Orleans delivered a costly blow to the Grizzlies’ seeding opportunities, beating them by seven as their young frontcourt dominated, getting 23 points and 10 boards from Robin Lopez and 18 points and 15 rebounds from Anthony Davis; James Harden scored 20 as Houston beat Cleveland 116-78; OKC beat Orlando by eight, pulling away behind Kevin Durant (25 points, eight rebounds); Wesley Matthews (28 points) and Portland took care of business against Atlanta, 104-93; Andrei Kirilenko had 20 points as the Timberwolves destroyed Phoenix, 117-86; and the Lakers blew a huge game against Washington, 103-100, as John Wall (24 points, 16 assists) continued his incredible hot streak … We’re out like the Hoyas.
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