Penn ran off a 15-1 lead and left Manhattan for dead, 91-68, but St. Joseph's was a livelier problem for the Quakers. The Hawks cut a 12-point Penn lead to one before Guard Steve Bilsky, basketless for the first 36 minutes, scored twice and St. Joe's sophomores made four mistakes to lose 62-58.
" Fordham who?" the Temple Owls asked, and caught the Bronx gunners napping 67-66. Temple's 3-2 zone closed the driving lanes and forced Fordham outside, where the Rams' shooting percentage is mediocre. Center Lee Tress swept the boards and scored 19 points for Temple.
La Salle buried Western Kentucky, which had built its 12-1 record primarily against small colleges. Ahead 73-44 at one point, the Explorers finished off the outlanders 91-76. Ken Durrett set a Palestra record for a Big Five player by scoring 45 points. "The only thing Durrett did wrong all game," said Western Coach John Oldham, "was not get the opening tap."
"I don't believe in holding the ball in a visiting gym," De Paul Coach Ray Meyer said. So visiting De Paul ran with Villanova and made the home fans happy by losing 99-59. Niagara, however, forced Villanova into two overtime periods before the Wildcats finally staggered in with an 82-79 win. The Purple Eagles' 2-3 zone pushed Villanova's Howard Porter out of his favorite shooting angles and Wayne Jones dogged Porter in the corner. "It was a great basketball game," said Niagara's Frank Layden. "I really feel sorry for the people who stayed home."
1. PENN (13-0)
2. LA SALLE (10-1)
Marquette blasted Notre Dame 71-66 and New Mexico State 65-53 without playing its best game (page 32), and so did Notre Dame—against Detroit. Austin Carr, for one, hit only three of his first 15 shots, and the Irish shot 26% in the first half before winning 93-79. Their best move may have been begging off a scheduled game with Kansas, and Oklahoma City's worst move may have been taking the game instead. The Chiefs had spent 10 days in Florida "lying on the beach watching the girls in bikinis and drinking orange juice" because a Virgin Islands playing tour had fallen through. "After that," said Coach Abe Lemons, "my players will be surly when they've found I'm taking them to Kansas." Surly or not, they were so unstrung by the Jayhawkers' full-court press that they got only one basket in the first 9� minutes and committed 14 turnovers in the first half. Ahead 25 points late in the game, Kansas began fouling to get the ball and break 100. It did: 101-77.
Four o'clock in the afternoon before the Wisconsin game, Illinois Coach Harv Schmidt showed his team the film of last season's memorable encounter. For Rick Howat and the Illini it was like a replay of Doomsday. They were leading the Big Ten with a 5-0 record, had won 18 in a row at the Assembly Hall and were ahead of Wisconsin by 10. But suddenly the lead was down to one point with seconds left and Howat was at the line for a one-and-one. He missed, and Wisconsin made a layup just ahead of the buzzer. Illinois then lost its next four games. Tuesday night's contest was almost a rerun. An 11-point Illinois lead dwindled to two points in the waning minutes, and—yessiree—here came Howat with a one-and-one. He sank both shots, and the Badgers couldn't believe it. They fouled Howat three more times, so Howat dropped in six more free throws for an Illinois win 84-82. Later, in another tight one, the Illini beat Michigan State 69-67.
Indiana, led by George McGinnis' 31 points and 19 rebounds, downed Minnesota 99-73 but lost to Michigan 92-81. Jovon Price of Purdue, who has a wingspread of 84 inches, used every inch to beat Minnesota. With the score tied 92-92 in overtime, Price blocked a shot, controlled the ball in midair and dribbled in for a layup. Purdue won 97-92.