College basketball's 2012-13 season is less than two months old, and we've already had a ton of remarkable moments and intense action.
Lighthearted fun. Exciting beginnings. Record-setting outings. Touching tributes. Amazing upsets. Remarkable accomplishments.
Here are the 10 most memorable images from the early part of the 2012-13 NCAA men's basketball season:
If you are a collegiate hoops fanatic like I am, you can't wait for the middle of October to roll around so college basketball can officially start for another season.
Midnight Madness events are held on campuses across the country to give us a chance to welcome returning players and greet newly arriving recruits.
Don't you love coaches who are willing to step out of their role as team leader and jump into the fun?
Patrick Cassidy of Dime Magazine gave props to Michigan State's Tom Izzo for donning an Iron Man costume this last October so that he could “save Sparty from the Big Ten Legion of Doom.”
Izzo definitely scores points on my list for not taking himself too seriously!
Anything that honors those who serve our country and put themselves in harm's way is a good idea.
To bring college basketball preseason practices and games on base or on post (or even on aircraft carriers) gives soldiers, sailors and airmen a chance to see some great competition first hand
Syracuse and San Diego State opened its 2012-13 season aboard the USS Midway.
Playing on a flight deck has to be a unique experience.
UCLA's Pauley Pavilion reopened this season following a $136 million renovation.
Pauley was originally opened in 1965 during the legendary coaching career of John Wooden.
For years following his days on the UCLA sidelines and up until his eventual passing, Wooden attended the team's home games.
Section 104, Row B, Seat Six is Wooden’s golden chair, now permanently reserved for his family members.
The Kentucky Wildcats, the defending NCAA champs, have reloaded and are figuring out how to get it done with another new set of gifted players.
Virtually no other program could lose six players to the NBA draft and still be a Top 25 team the following season.
The Cats have lost a couple of early season matchups to teams (Duke, Notre Dame and Baylor) that figure to be in the March Madness mix.
Give Cats head coach John Calipari another two months, and Kentucky should be right in the middle of the 2013 tournament action.
In the fourth game at the newly renovated Pauley Pavilion, no one expected anything notable to happen.
Everyone thought that UCLA would take care of business against a middle-of-the-pack Big West Conference opponent like Cal Poly.
But someone forgot to tell the Mustangs that they weren't supposed to come in and rock the Bruins' world.
Cal Poly upset UCLA (70-68) by erasing an 18-point, second-half deficit.
In college hoops, dreams come true!
Grinnell College's (IA) Jack Taylor had a once-in-a-century game against Faith Baptist Bible.
The sophomore guard scored an NCAA-record 138 points on 52-of-108 shooting (27-for-71 from the three-point line).
Grinnell came out on top in this mindblower, 179-104.
I don't care what level of competition is playing, taking over 100 shots in a game is insane!
Everything takes a back seat when tragedy strikes.
As Providence College's head coach Ed Cooley followed the coverage of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, he knew that he wanted to do something to honor the victims and show support to the families who were impacted.
Bernie Augustine of the New York Daily News reported that Cooley:
...called Nike, the program's uniform supplier, and the company was able to deliver green uniforms with white trim (the elementary school's colors) along with green and white sneakers to the school (college) by Tuesday morning. In place of player names, SANDY HOOK was printed on the backs of the jerseys. In addition to the uniforms, a banner was hung in section 201 at the Dunkin' Donuts center that read "Newtown, Connecticut: We Have You In Our Thoughts And Prayers" with ribbons on each side of the banner. Twenty-six seats were left empty at the arena with a green bow affixed to the back of each seat.
The jersey's were worn in the Friar's game over Colgate.
While this gesture didn't wipe away the disaster or heal the heartache of the families, every little act of concern and empathy makes a difference.
Until two weeks ago, Alex Barlow was simply a 5'11" walk-on who played for Brad Stevens at Butler.
But when he drove into the lane against No. 1-ranked Indiana and hit a six-foot floater, Barlow became an instant legend.
His shot with 2.4 seconds helped the Bulldogs pull off one of the biggest upsets in school history by beating their cross-state rivals 68-66 in overtime.
Watching the final minutes unfold was like watching a movie!
Having a good season as a college basketball coach is commendable.
Having a string of successful seasons is praiseworthy.
But to win 900 college basketball games in one place is unbelievable.
And that's what Jim Boeheim celebrated after Syracuse beat Detroit two weeks ago.
Boeheim is in his 34th season of coaching the Orange, and is within two wins of tying Bob Knight (902 career victories) for second place in all-time wins behind Duke's Mike Krzyzewski (currently at 938 W's).
It doesn't matter how you slice it, that's a ton of basketball games.