Five Things: Rupp Streak Snapped And Cincy Wins At The Buzzer
By Andrew Kahn
No top-25 teams played on Sunday, but there was plenty of action on Saturday, with a few ranked teams needing late baskets to avoid upsets and a pair of blue-blood programs losing their third game. The biggest news of the weekend, however, was off the court, as legendary coach Rick Majerus passed away.
Rupp streak snapped
Since John Calipari took over in 2009, fans have always left Rupp Arena happy. That is, until Saturday, when Kentucky’s 55-game home win streak (54 of which came under Calipari) was snapped by Baylor. The No. 8 Wildcats made just 21 of their 71 shots (29%) and lost to unranked Baylor 64-55. The Bears got some revenge on Kentucky, who beat them in the Elite 8 last year. Kentucky (4-3) already has more losses than it had all of last season.
Cincy wins at buzzer
No. 17 Cincinnati (7-0) remained undefeated thanks to Cashmere Wright’s buzzer-beater. In what was a tight game throughout, the Bearcats beat Alabama 58-56 on Wright’s step-back fade-away over a 7-footer. Wright was just 3 for 8 from the field and had turned it over four times before he hit the game winner. It’s safe to say Alabama sports fans still had a great Saturday.
Aztecs hand Bruins third loss
UCLA was ranked 13th in the preseason poll, but dropped its third game on Saturday, losing to No. 23 San Diego State 78-69. It was the first meeting between the teams since 1991. The Aztecs hit 11 three-pointers and Jamaal Franklin scored 28 points on 9 of 18 shooting. UCLA got 29 combined points from Shabazz Muhammad and Jordan Adams, two freshmen who are leading the Bruins in scoring.
Louisville rallies to avoid upset
Should it have been a foul? You decide. Illinois State’s Tyler Brown used a shot fake to get Louisville’s Chane Behanan in the air, then drew contact while attempting a three at the buzzer. There was no whistle, Brown’s shot was way off, and No. 5 Louisville escaped with a 69-66 victory. Brown, who finished with a game-high 25 points, appeared to lean into Behanan, so the no-call was debatable. Louisville trailed by eight at half.
Rick Majerus dead at 64
Rick Majerus died on Saturday from heart failure at the age of 64. One of the more colorful coaches in college basketball, Majerus took a leave of absence as head coach of St. Louis this summer for medical reasons. He had a career record of 517-216, most of those coming at Utah, where he coached from 1989 to 2004. He led St. Louis to the NCAA Tournament last year, where his team beat Memphis before losing to No. 1 seed Michigan State by four. He participated in what turned out to be his final press conference after that game.
Andrew Kahn is a contributor to CBS Local who has written for ESPN the Magazine and The Wall Street Journal. He writes about college basketball and other sports at AndrewJKahn.com. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter at @AndrewKahn.