UC at Santa Barbara of the little Pacific Coast Athletic Association gave UCLA a hard time a week after Notre Dame and a week before USC. "Curtis Rowe played a fine game," said John Wooden after UCLA's 74-61 win. "About the only such game." Sidney Wicks slumped again, shooting 9 for 20 from the floor, 1 for 5 from the line and gathering only eight rebounds. "It's hard to assess a team that hasn't played a lot of road games," said Ralph Barkey, the Gaucho coach, "but I think the backcourt play is really hurting them. And UCLA seems too accustomed to winning; not as inspirational." Barkey, like others, is beginning to think that the departed, unpublicized John Vallely was more important to the Bruins than anybody realized.
Long Island University, loser to Washington 98-75, went next to Logan, Utah where its man-to-man defense (allowing an average of 61.3 points a game) almost lulled to sleep a Utah State team playing its third game in five days. When the Aggies finally woke up, they outscored the Blackbirds 16-1 in 3� minutes and won 82-74. But the doldrums were worse Saturday, and State bombed at Air Force 76-72.
It was a rare day in Oregon's Willamette Valley, spring in January as the sun dispelled the winter rains. It was a rare night, too—Denver upset Oregon 93-83. But the home crowd got to stand in tribute to Stan Love, who became the highest Duck scorer ever with 1,336 points. Sadly, the crowd stood in silent tribute earlier in the night paying unprecedented respect to a cross-state rival, Mike Keck of Oregon State, who had died earlier in the day in an automobile crash. A teammate, Larry Webber, received a knee injury that will end his season.
1. USC (16-0)
2. UCLA (15-1)
South Alabama and Florida State were no match for Jacksonville, so big Artis Gilmore continued his recent pattern of easing off shooting in favor of rebounding, leaving the center stage to 7' Pembrook Burrows III. Burrows, surely one of the world's tallest high school clarinet players before a basketball coach changed his mind about his future, scored 14 points as Jacksonville beat South Alabama 91-76 and 16 in the Dolphins' 83-65 win over Florida State. Gilmore grabbed 28 rebounds against South Alabama.
Tennessee, with Captain Jimmy England scoring 29 points, vented its wrath on Auburn 90-68 after losing to LSU at Baton Rouge, 80-70. Auburn's fine guard, John Mengelt, who had 26 himself, said, " England belongs in a class with Kentucky's Mike Casey and Mississippi's Johnny Neumann. He has tremendous moves."
Kentucky, back in form but without Casey, who sprained his ankle in Monday's 86-73 win over Alabama, blasted Vanderbilt 102-92 in an important SEC showdown. Against the Commodores, the Wildcats played most of the second half with only two starters as Tom Payne and Larry Steele sat down with four fouls apiece. But sophomores Jim Andrews and Larry Stamper filled in well and two old Kentuckians came back strong. Jim Dinwiddie, a regular last year but a nonstarter this season, replaced Casey admirably. Tom Parker, a disappointment after being named SEC sophomore of the year, went wild with 30 points.
Fifteenth-ranked Virginia, a stranger in paradise, suffered cavalier treatment from Clemson (45-44) and South Carolina (92-70). The unprecedented tension of national standing, aggravated by Clemson's slowdown win, so upset Forward Mike Wilkes that he was sent home by ambulance, but South Carolina's pressing defense overwhelmed all the Virginians. The Gamecocks, who had had 19 days to seethe and practice after two slow-down losses of their own, forced 11 early turnovers, led by 15 points at halftime and shot 65% in the second half.
"You learn what kind of team you have in this league when you go on the road," Maryland Coach Lefty Driesell said before venturing to Chapel Hill. What he said afterward is not recorded. North Carolina busted the Terrapins' zone with 15-footers, stopped their attack with a man-to-man press and tore off to a 25-5 lead while making 64.6% of its shots. The Tar Heels' 105-79 win put them back in the ACC lead.