The first week of the college post season showed us that there are some players who can step up to the spotlight. We've given you a rundown of the better NC-Double-Eh performances that happened, and didn't happen, over the last few days of tournament action right here ...
OK kids, it was a wild and woolly start to the NCAA post season, particularly in the NCAA Tournament. Lots of great action went on all week and as we step into another fun filled weak of games, here's my take on the great performances and not so great ones from the last few days...
Andrew Nicholson, St. Bonaventure vs. Florida State
The talk of the NCAAs leading up to the start, Andrew Nicholson did not disappoint. In St. Bonaventure's narrow 66-63 loss to Florida State, he showed that he can play with the best of them going for 20 points on 8-of-17 shooting, including 4-of-5 from the three, 7 rebounds, 2 blocks and an assist in 30 minutes. I think the best part of the entire game is that Nicholson got his second foul about midway through the first half and he managed to avoid getting his third for an extended period of time keeping him in the game longer. It was a great way to end his senior season and to get the NBA types penciling him in for a workout.
Laurent Rivard, Harvard vs. Vanderbilt
Harvard had a great run this season and despite dropping their only game in the NCAA Tournament to Vanderbilt, we can reflect on Laurent Rivard having dropped 20 points on 6-of-7 from behind the arc in his 25 minutes of action. Not bad at all.
Brady Heslip, Baylor vs. Colorado
Brady Heslip, the Downtown Canadian as he's been dubbed by his Baylor team, had a great game against Colorado. If you don't already know, he dropped 9-of-12 threes on the Buffaloes on his way to 27 points. He made almost double the amount that the opposition made in the game (5)! That total would make it 14 total threes in two games, by the way.
Devoe Joseph, Oregon vs. LSU
Who said that the only post season tournament was the NCAAs? Devoe Joseph had a great 25 points, 6 assist, 2 rebound and 2 steal game in the Ducks' 96-76 whopping of LSU in the NIT. He was 11-of-17 from the floor, including 3-of-6 from the three, in his 37 minutes of action.
Olu Ashaolu, Oregon vs. Iowa
Not to be outdone by his teammate Joseph, Olu Ashaolu had his best game in a while against Iowa. In that Ducks victory, he went for 22 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists and 2 blocks in 25 minutes off the bench.
Dylan Ennis, Rice vs. Drake
In the College Insiders Tournament, freshman Dylan Ennis had a great game in Rice's 74-68 win over Drake. He went for 17 points, 6 rebounds, 6 assists and 2 blocks in his 29 minutes of action.
Not So Great Ones
Myck Kabongo, Texas vs. Cincinnati
Myck Kabongo has had a rollercoaster of a freshman season seeing some high highs and low lows and the game he played could be taken for a low. In the Longhorns' 65-59 loss to Cincinnati he was 0-of-6 from the field in his 36 minutes managing only 2 assists in that span. The good thing about the game is that he only had 2 turnovers, which is great, along with 4 steals and 2 rebounds. This is definitely not the way he wanted to end the season I'm sure but he will now have a reason to want to get back into the Tournament next year.
Robert Sacre, Gonzaga vs. Ohio State
Rob Sacre didn't necessarily have a bad game but he didn't have a great game either. He went for 8 points and 6 rebounds in his 24 minutes but his foul trouble was the big thing here. Taking himself out of the game that way may have hurt the team on the defensive end in spurts. Maybe I'm expecting a little too much from the big guy but playing against a team like Ohio State I thought he would be able to raise his game a bit more. By the way, he only shot 3 foul shots and for a post player that shots the ball pretty well from the line that definitely isn't enough.
Kevin Pangos, Gonzaga vs. Ohio State
Speaking of Gonzaga, Kevin Pangos had a pretty tough night against the Buckeyes. Being hounded by the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year in Aaron Craft probably contributed to his 3-of-13 shooting on the game. Yikes! He did manage 10 points but he also only managed 1 assist in his 34 minutes of floor time. At least the senior Craft won't be around next season to lock up Pangos again.
Kris Joseph, Syracuse vs. UNC-Asheville, Kansas State
Here is a situation where I may have been expecting more from the senior star of a team. You can take your pick of game but Kris Joseph was not the player that we thought would show up this past weekend for Syracuse. Yes he did score 12 and 11 points respectively in both the games he played but he was 3-of-10 against UNC-Asheville and 3-of-7 against Kansas State. What had padded his point totals were his free throws which were a combined 13-of-14. He's not an overly aggressive player by any means and he rarely forces action but in his last Tournament run, I would think he needs to assert himself as the team's alpha dog especially since this last set of games is like an audition for June.