Live Blog: NCAA Tournament -- Day 2
Throughout the day SI.com will be checking in with our hoops experts at every game site to get the flavor of the tournament; we'll also follow the madness on Twitter for a taste of what the foremost college basketball experts are saying about the action. And, of course, you'll be able to keep track of all the games on our NCAA tournament scoreboard.
5:30 pm ET: Well, it's been a tournament for the upset-minded. Seven double-digit seeds have wins in the NCAA tournament, including No. 12 Cornell and No. 10 Missouri, both of whom thrilled fans earlier today. As we close up the blog for the afternoon, we leave you with a just-published piece by SI's Andy Staples, who advises not be afraid to fall in love with Cornell. Enjoy the weekend.
5:12 pm ET: Seth Davis is looking forward Missouri-West Virginia. Tweets Davis: "Just went Sharpie on Pitt. Earliest Sharpie of '10 tourney. Mizz-West Va is delicious matchup. Will be interesting to see WV vs that press."
5:06 pm ET: WISCONSIN 53, WOFFORD 49: Hard way to lose for gritty Wofford in its first appearance in the NCAA Tournament. Wisconsin took a 51-49 lead on a Jon Leuer jumper with 17 seconds left. On the ensuing possession, Wofford guard Cameron Rundles turned the ball over while attempting a crossover dribble. Leuer then knocked down two free throws with four seconds left for the 53-49 final.
5:03 pm ET: It's an all-day job for SI.com George Dorhmann, who sets the scene for Texas A&M-Utah State in Spokane: "The people of Washington have responded nicely and Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena looks to be about 90 percent full for Texas A&M/Utah State. The winning school can claim to be the true Aggies for the next 12 months. Seeing the Texas A&M fans sway along with the fight song just gave me goose bumps."
5 pm ET: Wofford and Wisconsin tied at 49 with 1:17. Time out on the court. We're looking at another thrilling finish.
4:44 pm ET: Give Wofford credit: They now lead Wisconsin 46-45 with 5:55 remaining. The Terriers have won 19 of 20 games after starting the season 4-6. During the season they defeated Georgia and South Carolina and hung tough with Pittsburgh (63-60) and Michigan State (72-60).
4:37 pm ET: SI.com's George Dorhmann offers a quick postcript following Purdue's win over Siena: "Great moment at the end of the game: Purdue guard Lewis Jackson was at the line with Purdue up three and moments after he missed the front end of a one-and-one that kept Siena's hopes alive. Jackson's free throw attempt hit the back of the iron but rather than bounce out, it just stuck there for a moment and then fell through the rim. It was as if his shot has no spin on it. Purdue's Chris Kramer, well aware how ugly a make that was, turned to press row and mouthed: "Wow!" Jackson then swished the second and Purdue held on to win 72-64."
4:27 pm ET: SI.com's Stewart Mandel has some observations on CBS' Gus Johnson, who is calling the Clemson-Missouri game in Buffalo: It's been a treat to watch Gus Johnson in action. On TV, you HEAR his excitement. What you don't see are the hand gestures that go with them. Since this game has been close throughout, my guess is it's going to get REALLY good here in the last 11:47.
4:23 pm ET: We clearly spoke too soon on Wofford-Wisconsin: The Terriers started the second half hitting their first six shots to tie the game at 31. Wofford forward Jamar Diggs is having himself a second half. He's scored 11 points in the first five minutes.
4:17 pm ET: SI.com's Pablo S. (Follow me on Twitter) Torre checks in from halftime of Pitt-Oakland: "This has become an academic exercise here in Milwaukee, as the Panthers now lead 39-26. Oakland is technically hanging around, but momentum pretty much switched sides -- probably for good -- at about the time that bloodied forward Derick Nelson left the game after being elbowed in the face. And so now Nelson's quote from yesterday seems especially sad: "All my friends and family, of course, they picked us.
But I'm not sure. I didn't see their brackets, actually. So I have to check that."4:07 pm ET: Tweets Seth Davis: "Clemson starting to assert itself inside a little bit with Booker and Grant. That's how you get Capone."
4:04 pm ET: Purdue is running away from Siena, and SI's George Dorhmann lets us in on the why: "Purdue leads 59-46 with just under nine minutes to go thanks to great defense and JaJuan Johnson's absolute dominance inside. He has 20 points, including two ferocious dunks as the Boilermakers have extended their lead. Most important: Matt Painter was able to rest Chris Kramer, E'Twaun Moore and a few others for a few minutes and yet Purdue didn't give ground."
4:03 pm ET: For those of you who want a quick break from basketball: Tiger Woods once again landed on the front of a New York newspaper today.
3:59 pm ET: Stewart Mandel just tweeted some first half stats from Missouri-Clemson: "Points off turnovers: Mizzou 16, Clemson 1. Rebounds: Clemson 20-12. Clemson 8-of-13 from 3, Mizzou 2-of-10."
3:56 pm ET: It's halftime in Jacksonville and, man, has it been ugly to watch: Wisconsin 27-19. Badgers senior guard Trevon Hughes leads all scorers with 14, and it's a little remarkable that Wofford is only down eight. The Terriers shot 7-of-25 from the field in the opening 20.
3:41 pm ET: SI's George Dorhmann is watching a tight one between Siena and Purdue: "Purdue scored eight straight to start the second half and surged ahead 37-32. It was pretty obvious the Boilermakers lacked emotion in the first half but seem to have found some desire. JaJuan Johnson converted on a three-point play to start the run. I remember seeing Johnson play as a freshman and thinking that he was a future NBA lottery pick. At that time, he was 6-foot-10 but skinny and didn't have much of an offensive repertoire. Johnson made only 3-of-8 shots in the first half despite almost all his looks coming around the basket. He is still skinny and still in search of an offensive game, but he remains the most gifted player on the floor."
3:39 pm ET: Missouri and Clemson are tied at 39 at the half, with the game tied seven times already in the first half: "It's occurred to me that covering a Missouri basketball game is not all that different than covering their football games,' says SI.com's Stewart Mandel. "They both move so quickly it's impossible to keep an updated play-by-play log. The hoopsters don't necessarily have a Chase Daniel or Chase Coffman as the trigger man, but I'd be willing to wager that Marcus Demon could hang with Jeremy Maclin in the 40."
3:35 pm ET: SI.com's Pablo S. Torre is keeping an eye on Oakland-Pittsburgh. He's also shamelessly begging for this blog to link to his Twitter feed, and we can't but admire the over-the-top narcissism (Says Torre: "Oakland is, at the very least, a team of realists. "We're not going to cut the nets down in Indianapolis," coach Greg Kampe said yesterday. "We know that." So it is that virtually no one has picked the Grizzlies over Pitt. But with 10:00 left, they're at least leading 14-11 in, yes, a close one. Led by junior center Keith Benson, they've been swarming the paint and benefiting from general Pitt inaccuracy. No zombies yet, either."
3:30 pm ET: It's halftime at the Siena-Purdue game, and SI's George Dorhmann gives us an update:"Easy to spot the reason Siena holds a 32-29 lead at the half over Purdue. The two teams shot nearly identical from the field 40.6% to 38.7%, but Siena made one more three-pointer. Purdue was an awful 1-of-9 from beyond the arc, despite getting several open looks."
3:26 pm ET: If you're looking for points, we'd advise you not to watch Wisconsin-Wofford. The Badgers are one of the country's top defensive teams: They hold opponents to 41.8 percent shooting and an average of 56.2 points per game. Wofford stated the game 2-of-15 and after the first 10 minutes, the Badgers held a 13-7 lead.
3:17 pm ET: Stewart Mandel checks in from Buffalo with Clemson leading 28-19 with 8:55 left in the opening half: "Clemson point guard Andre Young came off the bench and gave the Tigers a nice spark. They aren't having much trouble with Missouri's press, and Young and Demontez Stitt have hit some big threes. Both teams' problem is they can't catch their own teammates' passes."
3:14 pm ET: SI's George Dohrmann says he is seated next to the Siena play-by-play radio guy: "Whenever [senior guard] Edwin Ubiles moves with the ball, the radio guy describes his movement as a "gallop." For example: "Ubiles gallops into the lane!" I am waiting for: "Ubiles canters across court." Ubiles leads all scorers with 11 points. Sienna is up 29-27 with two minutes left in the half.
3:09 pm ET: Love these stats from press-happy Clemson and Missouri: Missouri averages nearly 10.9 steals a game, tops in the country, and forces 19.7 turnovers each game. Clemson forces 17.5 turnovers a game and averages 9.6 steals, which ranks eighth nationally.
3:03 pm ET: From Bryan Graham's Dept. of Stats: Cornell is the first Ivy League school besides longtime Ancient Eight diarchs Penn and Princeton to bag an NCAA tournament victory since Columbia beat St. Bonaventure in 1968.
3 pm ET: How big an impact has Robbie Hummel's loss been to Purdue? The Boilermakers were 24-3 and averaged 73 points per game and shot 46 percent from the field with Hummel in the lineup. Without the 6-foot-8 junior forward, Purdue is 3-2 while averaging 59 points per game and shooting 38 percent. Siena leads 27-24 with 4:18 to go in the first half.
2:54 pm ET: Here's hoping Stewart Mandel gets a good game. He seems excited about this one, and checks in from Buffalo: "If nothing else, this Missouri-Clemson game should be ... fast. Both teams like to press and run. Missouri leads the nation in steals (350) and turnovers forced (19.7 per game), and Clemson isn't far behind (299 steals, second nationally in turnover margin.)"
2:48 pm ET: Tweets SI's George Dohrmann: "Sitting courtside at Siena/Purdue. First question for Fran McCaffery if Siena wins: "Fran, nice win, so about that St. John's opening." So far, Purdue is up 13-8 with 11:48 left.
2:44 pm ET: On the cusp of the Pitt-Oakland tipoff in Milwaukee, Pablo S. Torre surveys the scene in the stands: "The Xavier fans had started chanting "Let's go Oakland" before Minn-X was done, and with Pitt the distinct minority in this crowd -- there's a strong cadre of fans from Oak-town right behind me -- let's go to the Internet for a defense of the chalk pick. This afternoon Jermaine Dixon (@mainedixon) Tweeted, "everybody tune in to watch the PITT vs OAKLAND game at 2:45 eastern time, we bout to go triller mike jackson on them dudes." I'm pretty sure that means they're going to transform into zombies and eat them, so this one should be interesting."
2:38 pm ET: It's hilarious to see NCAA teams and players playing the Obama card. Says Purdue's Chris Kramer: "Our president picked against us. EVERYONE is picking against us." Obama correctly called Cornell win over Temple earlier today. He has Siena beating Purdue before losing to Texas A&M in the second round.
2:32 pm ET: Consider March 19, 2010 one of the best days in Ivy League basketball history: With its win over Temple, Cornell becomes the first Ivy League team to win an NCAA tournament game since Princeton in 1998. It's also the program's first-ever tourney victory after winless appearances in 1954, '88, 2008 and '09.
2:22 pm ET: As a potential bracketbuster, plenty of people will keeping an eye on Siena and Purdue in Spokane. Dohrmann checks in from courtside again: "It is amazing to see how a player changes physically over four years of college. I was in New Orleans when Purdue guard Chris Kramer, then a freshman, played Florida four years ago. It was a memorable game for Kramer; he made a circus shot after he fell to the ground near the free throw line. Kramer looked like a walk-on back then but now he is a rock at 215 pounds. It would be an understatement to say that seats are still available for Purdue-Siena here in Spokane. The gym is (conservatively) 1/15th filled. A lot was working against the ticket office on this one. An early game between two schools located far away and held on the same day Gonzaga plays."
2:17 pm ET: SI's George Dohrmann sets the scene from the upcoming Siena-Purdue matchup: Vansh Langer, a junior Biology major at Siena and the drummer in the band woke at eight this morning with his bandmates to play a sendoff for the team as it left its hotel. Then Langer and a few others painted their faces in the hotel lobby. He went with the Braveheart look. "We don't have many fans because our school is so far away," Langer says. "So I try and do whatever I can to support the team."
2:11 pm ET: The versatile Seth Davis gives us a European basketball update: "I'm shocked -- shocked! -- that Jeremy Tyler quit team in Israel before season over. Disaster from the start. Creates roster spot for Jon Scheyer."
2:10 pm ET: Prof. Bryan Graham checks in from the Dept. of Statistics: "Only four teams hung more than 70 points on Temple this season: Kansas, Xavier, Charlotte and Richmond. Those teams accounted for three of the Owls' five losses. At the 12-minute TV timeout, Cornell leads 63-48."
2:03 pm ET: We now have today's Jimmer Fredette: Cornell senior forward Ryan Wittman is 7-of-9 from the field and 4-of-5 from three to lead Cornell with 20 points. The Big Red are shooting a remarkable 60.5 percent (23-of-35) as a team. Even more stunning is ths: Temple is shooting 58.8 percent (20-of-34) from the field and trail 63-48 with under 11 to play.
2 pm ET: Poor Stewart Mandel. His game in Buffalo is about as entertaining as Bills' games have been in recent years. "Unfortunately this game ceased to be competitive shortly before halftime, and the second half has been all Mountaineers," he says. "It's been a great day for forwards Devin Ebanks and Kevin Jones. Morgan State can't buy a bucket (shooting roughly 30 percent as of this writing), and West Virginia has cleaned up on the glass. Country Roads ...
1:57 pm ET: Stat of the day from SI.com's Bryan Graham: West Virginia is on a 57-19 run over the past 21 minutes spanning halftime.
1:50 pm ET: You knew it was coming alert: CBS just showed Xavier guard Jordan Crawford's dunk on LeBron James from last summer. Crawford has 22 points to lead Xavier. X is up 47-42 with under 12 minutes to go. The Musketeers are shooting 58 percent in the second half.
1:47 pm ET: Our man Andy Staples checks in from Jacksonville: "If it seems Cornell knows Temple a lot better than Temple knows Cornell, that's because the Big Red do know the Owls. In fact, Cornell players began studying Temple long before players from either team had any idea they'd face one another in the NCAA Tournament. Cornell coach Steve Donahue, who was a 10-year assistant for Temple coach Fran Dunphy at Penn, requested video of Temple forward Lavoy Allen from Owls assistant Matt Langel earlier this season. Donahue wanted his players to learn from Allen's tough defense.
"I wanted to show our guys," Donahue said Thursday. "Not knowing that we'd play each other in the NCAA tournament, but I think I know their team well. I don't know if that's advantage or not. I think our guys have got to take it in." They did. Early in the first half, Cornell controlled the tempo. Temple, which prefers to bleed to shot clock, was scoring in transition and getting shut down by Cornell's zone -- with 7-footer Jeff Foote providing the obstacle in the middle -- in its halfcourt offense. Offensively, the Big Red were patient. Guard Louis Dale (11 first-half points) ventured into the paint often to loosen up the defense, and Foote (nine points, four rebounds) was aggressive on the boards."
1:45 pm ET: Tweets SI's Ben Reiter: "They need to ... shoot 60% from the floor," Rangers GM Jon Daniels (Cornell '99) told me of Cornell's chance to win. Big Red shooting 68.4%."
1:42 pm ET: Block party: Minnesota has 11 blocks so far (Including five by sophomore center Colton Iverson) as we're early in the second half The record is 14 by Kentucky in 1998, and it's in danger. Xavier leads 33-30 with 17 minutes left.
1:38 pm ET: We're entering garbage time in Buffalo. Tweets Stewart Mandel: "The most compelling part of this game by far is the Morgan State band. They bring it strong."
1:35 pm ET: Self promotion alert: Worth noting is that you can follow me on Twitter. here. My ego can use the boost after losing every game yesterday.
1:27 pm ET: Our man in Milwaukee checks in: "It's all knotted up at 26-26, and while this is not exactly a barn-burner -- OK, no more oblique Midwest allusions, I promise -- the tempo is beginning to match the ferocity down low," says Pablo S. Torre. "But let's make a couple thing clear: things are sloppy here (21.4 percent shooting in the first half) and the bodies keep falling. Minnesota should be happy, though: so ignored all season, it's more than hanging with the X."
1:16 pm ET: Minnesota and Xavier are tied at 26 at the half in what's been a brutal shooting exhibition. The Musketeers are 9-of-42 (21.4 percent) from the field while Minnesota is a shade better at 35.7 percent (10-of-28). The one player immune from the massive brickdom is Golden Gophers guard Lawrence Westbrook, who leads all scorers with 15 points on 6-of-9 shooting from the field and three 3-pointers.
1:13 pm ET: Cornell is dictating its will on Temple. Sort of. Says SI.com's Bryan Graham: "Cornell is the tournament's best three-point shooting team (.434), while Temple is the best at defending the three (.278 allowed). So far, the Big Red are just 2-for-7 from three -- but 10-for-11 from two."
1:07 pm ET: Tweets Seth Davis: "Temple is 4th in FG defense. Do you realize how good you have to be to shoot 9 for 12 against them?"
1:04 pm ET: West Virginia finished the half on a 19-8 run to lead 38-27 at the half. Kevin Jones has not missed a shot. He's 6-of-6 from the field (and 1-of-1 from three) for 13 points.
1 pm ET: SI.com's Pablo S. Torre has an update from Milwaukee: "Is it too stereotypical to describe this game as 'workmanlike'? Lot of big bodies banging -- seeing 7-foot Kenny Frease launch himself toward my general vicinity in an attempt to close out on a Gophers three was a horrifying spectacle of human locomotion -- but the tempo is picking up as Minnesota's made a nice run." All tied at 17 with 6:55 remaining."
12:54 pm ET: Big news away from the tournament. John Canzano of the Portland Oregonian reports that a news conference has been called for at 11:30 am local time in Eugene. "Looks like [Oregon's] Mike Bellotti is going to step down as AD. Stay tuned."
12:51 pm ET: Seth Davis has been looking forward to the Temple-Cornell game all week. Says Davis: "If I had to pay to watch one game in the first round, it would be Temple-Cornell. The Big Red are the No. 1 three-point shooting team in the nation, while the Owls are ranked in the top 10 nationally in both field goal defense and three-point defense. Both teams also both have big, mobile centers in Cornell's Jeff Foote and Temple's Lavoy Allen. In the end, I think Temple's defense wins out in this one, and the Owls' guards (Juan Fernandez and Ryan Brooks) are more than capable of knocking down shots of their own." No. 12 Cornell, which is 8-of-10 from the field leads 19-11 with 11:31 left in the half.
12:46 pm ET: West Virginia sophomore forward Kevin Jones has brought the Mountaineers back over the past seven minutes. He has nine points and four rebounds and is 4-of-4 from the field and 1-of-1 from three. West Virginia is tied with Morgan State at 19-19 with just over seven minutes left in the first half.
12:41 pm ET: Andy Staples is channeling his inner Roger Ebert from Jacksonville: "When I saw that Temple had a starting guard named Luis Guzman, I thought to myself, now that's a character actor. First Boogie Nights, then Oz, then John from Cincinnati, and now he's playing guard at Temple. Talk about versatile. Then the Owls' Guzman hit the first shot of the game. Not the same guy."
12:40 pm ET: Tweets SI's Andy Staples: "Temple fans break out Ole chant when Argentinian guard Juan Fernandez hits a reverse layup." Cornell leads 10-9 after the first five minutes of play.
12:37 pm ET: College basketball stats guru Bryan Graham (Howie Schwab who?) offers some quick Temple-Cornell facts: "Temple coach Fran Dunphy is 22-1 against his former assistants," says Graham. "Cornell's Steve Donohue worked under Dunphy at Penn from 1990 to 2000. Dunphy and Donohue are two of seven coaches in this year's tournament who grew up within 20 miles of the Palestra. Siena's Fran McCaffery, Richmond's Chris Mooney, Wisconsin's Bo Ryan, Maryland's Gary Williams and Villanova's Jay Wright are the others."
12:31 pm ET: SI.com's Andy Staples is in Jacksonville and paints the pregame scene: "They're about to introduce the Cornell and Temple players, and this place is mostly empty except for a well-stocked Big Red cheering section. Hard to blame the fans, though. The high in Jacksonville today is 74, with a light breeze. Frankly, we should just move this game to the beach."
12:29 pm ET: Tweets ESPN's Dana O'Neil: "Courtside for West Virginia-Morgan State where I already have declared my love for the Morgan State Marching Machine band."
12:28 pm ET: SI.com's Pablo S. Torre checks in from Milwaukee: "Yesterday's first-round sites already have their upsets, yes. But -- as the student workers here who handed me my wireless access information just asked -- are they as nice as Milwaukee? If the Midwest's rep is true, then that's pretty much impossible: Xavier (Cincinnati, Ohio) and Minnesota (Minneapolis) have just left the court after their shootaround, and the stadium -- while maybe one-third full -- is stocked with fans who look pretty darn happy to have made the trip. Give the edge for now to X, though: they're definitely the loudest, the most organized, and their terrifying mascot's flag just sent various papers along press flow aflutter."
12:26 pm ET: Tweets SI's Stewart Mandel: "I've discovered the secret to Gus Johnson's pipes. He is sitting 6 feet in front of me, and he has a giant bottle of Listerine at his side."
12:20 pm ET: West Virginia starts the game 0-for-7 from the field. Sure, they are a slow starting team but this is ridiculous. It's 10-0 Morgan State with 15:03 left.
12:18 pm ET: For those who need a quick primer on Morgan State: The Bears best player is Reggie Holmes, a 6-4 senior guard whose 784 points this season (he's averaging 21.8 points) rank second in the nation. Morgan State has won seven straight games and 19 of its last 21. Most notably, Morgan State is coached by Todd Bozeman, the former Cal coach who is 85-50 at the school. Washington Post sports columnist Michael Wilbon provides some nice background here.
12:15 pm ET: SI.com's Stewart Mandel checks in from the great city of Buffalo, where he'll be watching Morgan State and West Virginia: "Greetings from the HSBC Arena in Buffalo, where the locals will be introduced today to an exotic sport that involves baskets and orange balls, not pucks and nets. Syracuse fans are expected to take over the place, but the Orange's game isn't until 9:30 tonight, so I expect quite a few empty seats for the afternoon session. In the meantime, I just moved into a new home in need of window treatments, so I'm going to ask the NCAA if I can use some of their ubiquitous blue curtains once they're done with them."
Pregame: That famous slipper-wearing Disney character (you know the one) arrived early at the NCAA Tournament, with No. 14 Ohio knocking off No. 3 Georgetown and No. 13 Murray State shocking No. 4 Vanderbilt. Lower seeds won an incredible 7 of the 16 games on Thursday and five double-digit seeds pulled off upsets.
"The word that comes to mind is "unprecedented," said SI's Seth Davis." I don't know if I'm an official historian of the tournament, but it sure seemed like no opening day I've seen before. There was that one day in the early '80s where there were a few buzzer-beaters right in a row, and that was considered a seminal moment, but yesterday was just unbelievable. There's no way today can live up to what happened yesterday."
Unless, of course, it does. The first game tips at 12:15 pm ET in Buffalo with No. 15 Morgan State against second-seeded West Virginia.