1. TEXAS WESTERN (16-0)
2. HOUSTON (14-4)
3. OKLAHOMA CITY (17-3)
Texas Western remained unbeaten, but just by a gasp. After waltzing by New Mexico State 104-78, the Miners visited Colorado State at Fort Collins and were on the ropes, tied 66-66, with 12 seconds left. But TW's Bobby Joe Hill threw in a 25-foot running jumper and the Miners had their 16th victory 68-66. Still, HOUSTON was making an awfully good case for itself as top gun in Texas. The Cougars had 10 straight after shooting down Lamar Tech 112-82 and Tulsa 97-77. OKLAHOMA CITY avenged an earlier defeat by beating Memphis State 104-89. The Chiefs also topped Centenary 118-95 and West Texas 87-69.
Texas Coach Harold Bradley is over his mad at Texas Tech fans. A few days before the big game in Lubbock, he had called the Raider crowds "the worst in the nation." So some Tech students went down to the airport and welcomed Bradley with an honest-to-goodness red carpet. His Longhorns were so pleased that they went out and upset Tech 87-74. That gave TEXAS A&M a two-game lead in the SWC. The Aggies beat TCU 81-72 as John Beasley scored 35 points. Woeful Rice could use some red-carpet treatment. The Owls were beaten by SOUTHERN METHODIST 112-89—their 27th consecutive loss.
1. SAN FRANCISCO (15-2)
2. BRIGHAM YOUNG (12-3)
3. UTAH (14-4)
As far as UCLA's rivals in the AAWU are concerned, the Bruins can forget about a third straight national championship. They may even keep UCLA out of the NCAA tournament altogether. WASHINGTON STATE, until now a conference nonentity, caught the Bruins aching—Edgar Lacey had bursitis of the knee, Kenny Washington a pulled muscle—and shocked them 84-83 at Pullman on Dennis Kloke's two foul shots with five seconds left. It was State's first win over UCLA in seven years and the Bruins' second league loss. OREGON STATE, which beat California 77-62 and second-place Stanford 56-54 on Rick Whelan's lay up at the buzzer, is the new leader.
No team was safe in the Western AC either. With 9� minutes to play, first-place Utah had a 10-point lead over BRIGHAM YOUNG in Salt Lake City, and it looked as if Coach Jack Gardner could swig his milk in peace on the Redskins' bench. Then the Cougar press began to work. They also set up a high post with feeds to Dick Nemelka, a slick jump shooter, and suddenly the game was turned around. With 11 seconds to go, Nemelka twisted in a jumper—for his 34th point—and Brigham Young won 94-93. It was enough to drive Coach Gardner to drink—more milk, that is.
New Mexico had big Mel Daniels back, but even he could not save the Lobos when they ventured out of town. ARIZONA, playing a harassing full-court press, upset New Mexico 83-77 in double overtime at Tucson, and then ARIZONA STATE stunned the Lobos 74-68 at Tempe. The best visiting WYOMING could get was an even break. The Cowboys beat Arizona State 78-77 but lost to Arizona 76-70.
San Francisco had no problems (page 53). The Dons simply belted Santa Barbara 83-43 and San Jose State 81-65.