Wednesday Night Hoopla: Top 10 Upsets

Jameson FlemingSenior Writer IFebruary 5, 2009

ACC Upsets

(10) Clemson 74, (3) Duke 47

Yes, you are reading it right. The Tigers made a palindrome out of the final score; a palindrome that resulted in a 27-point beatdown of Coach Krzyzewski's Blue Devils.

After opponents exploited Clemson's full court press the last two games, the Tigers went back to the press once again and completely threw Duke out of its rhythm. The Dukies had an uncharacteristic 16 turnovers and repeatedly took bad, hurried shot after bad, hurried shot.

Oliver Purnell's club took control half way through the first half and blitzed Duke into oblivion throughout the second half.

Terrence Olgesby and his quick release, knocked down shots from all over the court. When Olgesby missed, it seemed like big man Trevor Booker was always there to deflect the miss to a teammate or just gobble it up himself and slam it down on Duke's inferior frontcourt.

So what does this mean for the big picture in the ACC? After three teams looked like legitimate contenders from top seeds, the ACC may only get one team on the one seed in the tournament. North Carolina looks like the clear-cut favorite in the ACC once again while Duke, Clemson, and Wake Forest are fighting it out for second.

Miami 79, (6) Wake Forest 52

Losing three of four games against the middle- and lower-tier teams counts as a slump for the Demon Deacons. Dino Gaudio has done a tremendous job getting his team ready to play every night until this past week. Wake Forest has gone from a national title contender to a team that looks like it can't matchup against senior laden teams.

The Deacs simply didn't show up in the second half. After trailing by just three at half, Wake allowed 50 points to Miami and let a three-point deficit enlarge to a 27-point bubble by the end of the game.

Jeff Teague had one of the worst games of the season for Wake. The super sophomore had been shooting over 50 percent from three this year, but on Wednesday night didn't connect on any of his five attempts from distance.

Miami has been a hard team to figure out. The Hurricanes now have a marquee win, but still have seven losses, five of which have come in conference play. Miami still sits eighth in the 12-team ACC.

Big XII Frauds

Missouri 69, (17) Texas 65

The Longhorns have dropped two in a row and will be on the verge of dropping out of the top 25. UT's biggest problem has been AJ Abrams who has been way off track since conference play began.

The senior guard has hit just 17 of 56 three pointers against Big XII foes. Wednesday night, Abrams hit three of seven, but couldn't get anything else going.

Texas has lacked multiple scoring options at times this year and Wednesday was no different. Dexter Pittman had an impressive 25 points, but the only other player to reach double-digits for the Longhorns was Abrams who scored just 11 points.

Missouri is really starting to roll through the Big XII. The Tigers have won six of seven and sit third in the conference, a game and a half ahead of fourth place Texas.

(2) Oklahoma 77, Texas A&M 71

The Sooners are looking terribly unimpressive against conference foes that shouldn't be anywhere close to being on the level of Oklahoma.

Despite being undefeated in conference play, OU has struggled to win six of its eight games in the league. The Sooners keep relying on late runs to knock off teams like TAMU, Iowa State, and Nebraska.

Jeff Capel needs to find consistent contributors after Blake Griffin. The likely Player of the Year has been spectacular lately, but nobody else has stepped up to be the second scorer. Willie Warren can be tremendous at times, but many nights the freshman makes numerous bad decisions and is a non-factor.

The Sooners are still ranked second in the country, but there are several teams ranked below OU that are clearly playing better ball than the Sooners.

Big East Battles

(20) Syracuse 74, West Virginia 61

The Salt City's well known 2-3 zone defense was back in full force against the Mountaineers in front of over 21,000 fans in the Carrier Dome.

The Orange aggressively went after protecting the three-point line, but also crashed the boards to keep one of the best offensive rebounding teams in the country from cashing in on second opportunities.

The 'Cuse led throughout the entire game and at one point the backcourt duo of Jonny Flynn and Eric Devendorf was close to outscoring Bob Huggins' entire club. With 11 minutes left to play, the scoreboard could have read WVU 42, Flynn and Devendorf 40.

Each Syracuse guard ended up with 22 points in a win that ended the Orange's three game skid.

(16) Villanova 94, Providence 91

The Friars really love these high scoring games. After taking part in 100-94 last Wednesday against Syracuse, Providence pushed the score into the 90s once again, this time against a slightly better Wildcat squad.

Jay Wright can't be happy his team let a 20-point second-half lead be trimmed to a three-point advantage in the waning moments, but he should get satisfaction in the fact 'Nova went on the road to pick up a win against a quality conference opponent.

Plus Wright should be happy his star guard, Scottie Reynolds might be on track after scoring only 10 points per game since his 40-point outburst against Seton Hall. The junior guard scored 31 Wednesday night in the Dunkin' Donuts Center.

Cincinnati 93, Notre Dame 83

You can pretty much declare Notre Dame dead at this point: nine losses and sole possession of 12th place in the Big East for the Irish. Luke Harangody has tried carrying this team on his back, scoring another 28 points, grabbing 14 boards, and not turning it over once against the Bearcats.

There's no second option on this team anymore as teams have realized sharpshooter Kyle McAlarney can't create his own shot. Defenders stay glued to him all game and force the guard into a parade of bad shots.

Cincinnati still has a little hope of gaining an at-large bid. Mick Cronin's team stands at 15-8 and 5-5 in the conference, but has a nice win over Georgetown.

Quick Hitters

Michigan State 76, Minnesota 47

Ouch would appropriately describe Wednesday's beatdown from the Golden Gopher perspective. At one point, the Spartans led 54-19. This deserves a repetition: Ouch.

Memphis 79, SMU 66

The Tigers won their 50th straight Conference USA game, but for a while it looked like the Mustangs might come up with an upset trailing by just one about halfway through the second half.

UCLA 76 USC 60

The Bruins win a matchup of Los Angeles' best teams despite getting a mere four points from star guard Darren Collison.

Boston College 80, Virginia 70

A 20-point lead at halftime leads to a solid win for the Eagles on the road moves BC to 6-3 in the ACC.

LSU 80, Georgia 62

With National Signing Day being Wednesday, the Bulldogs can always count on football for filling their day with the current state of the basketball program. LSU moves to an SEC West leading 6-1.

Tennessee 74, Arkansas 72

The Volunteers are starting to get back on track with wins against the Razorbacks and Gators of Florida.

Binghamton 85, Vermont 83

Tony Kornheiser's alma mater looks like it might be the team to beat after taking down league favorite Vermont on the Catamounts' home floor.