After a January loss to Wake Forest, Clemson Coach Bill Foster tried but failed to relax his players for the next game with a series of one-liners. "So I bought a wild-looking sweater and wore it on game day to give them something to kid about," Foster said. "We won. So I've bought a sweater for every game since." Foster's sweater psychology, plus 32 points from his bench, earned the Tigers a 70-66 win in a rematch at Wake Forest that tightened up the Atlantic Coast race. At Maryland, though, Foster could not pull the wools over the Terps' eyes and he lost 84-78. Wake Forest took a 1�-game lead over Clemson and North Carolina, getting 30 points from Skip Brown and coming from 17 points back in the last 17� minutes to trim North Carolina State 84-77. The Tar Heels dumped Maryland 97-70.
Penn celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Palestra by nipping Columbia 86-85 as Keven McDonald had 26 points, then stopped Cornell 59-41 as Tony Price had 23 rebounds. Princeton toppled the Big Red 62-49 and, with Bob Roma picking up 22 points and 16 rebounds, bopped the Lions 85-64 to tie the Quakers for the Ivy lead.
Providence topped DePaul 84-73 and overcame 25 turnovers to defeat LIU 99-85. That gave the Friars 20 wins for the 16th time in 19 years, a feat unmatched in the nation.
A 37-point spree by Essie Hollis carried St. Bonaventure to a 91-84 upset of Syracuse. Em (the Gem) Sammons had 19 points as Philadelphia Textile shocked Villanova 61-57. VMI avoided being dumped, holding off Marshall 97-90 and Richmond 92-87.
1. WAKE FOREST (19-3)
2. PROV. (20-3)
3. N. CAROLINA (17-4)
"We really messed up the race, didn't we?" said Nebraska's Bob Siegel, who helped snarl the Big Eight picture with 18 points in a 60-58 upset of Missouri. On hand to see the Huskers win with aggressive man-to-man defense and ball-control offense was the largest crowd ever to see a basketball game in Nebraska, 14,273. The Huskers' win left them tied with Oklahoma and one game behind Missouri and Kansas State. Kim Anderson's 38 points carried the Tigers past Kansas 87-79. The Wildcats earned a share of first place with two wins, first stopping Nebraska 67-62 and then committing only four turnovers and getting 34 points from freshman Curtis Redding to beat Kansas 86-83. Oklahoma toppled Oklahoma State 63-51, but lost at Colorado 79-65.
Although Tulane sank 16 of 20 second-half shots and led 62-48 with 9:31 left, Arkansas rallied for a 76-73 victory. Marvin Delph and Ron Brewer made the Razorbacks winners by bombing the Green Wave zone for 41 points. Arkansas then drubbed Baylor 77-57 and Rice 78-51.
A tenacious full-court press enabled Cincinnati to win three times. First came a 63-62 verdict over Marquette, in which the press forced 15 turnovers. The Bearcats next beat Eastern Kentucky 78-60 and Georgia Tech 84-73, provoking 46 errors.