Three nights later, against Drake, the Red-birds, who had been successful on only one of 14 three-point attempts this season, hit four in a row—three of them by Guard Brad Duncan—in a 65-59 comeback victory. "I'm afraid these close games are going to catch up with us," said Lamb, and he was right. New Mexico State handed the Redbirds their worst loss at home in four years, 66-50.
Wichita State Coach Gene Smithson was so upset with the play of his leading scorer, Antoine Carr, at Indiana State that he benched him for eight minutes in the first half and ripped into him at halftime when the Shockers were leading 42-41. Whereupon Carr kicked into overdrive in the second half, scoring 22 of his game-high 28 points as the Shockers won 89-81. "Even the best of cars stall sometimes," said Antoine, pun obviously intended. Wichita State then defeated New Mexico State 101-80, as reserve Forward Karl Papke had career highs in both scoring (26) and rebounding (14). The Shockers then got 26 points from Aubrey Sherrod in an 85-63 rout of West Texas State. Wichita State Forward Xavier McDaniel, the nation's top rebounder, had 64 points and 51 rebounds in the three games.
After Missouri struggled past Colorado 68-65 in double overtime. Tiger Coach Norm Stewart groused, "We wallowed around like a hog in the mud. I thought the best thing we did was persevere and win the ballgame." The Tigers did that by hitting 24 of 37 free throws, compared to Colorado's 13 of 15. Steve Stipanovich and Jon Sundvold combined for 40 points, Sundvold icing the victory by hitting a pair of foul shots with one second left. Stipanovich added 21 points and 12 rebounds in Mizzou's 82-50 rout of Kansas State, the most one-sided outcome in the 171-game history of the series. "This was the most enjoyable game we've had here," Stewart told a broadcaster later. "When you've got that big a lead, even you or I can play."
Freshman sensation Wayman Tisdale scored 23 points in Oklahoma's 60-59 loss at Nebraska, and then exploded for 46 points, hitting 17 of 23 from the field and 12 of 15 from the foul line in a 102-74 rout of Iowa State.
After Houston ripped visiting Baylor 86-69, Cougar Forward Clyde Drexler said, "I got tired of being down. It was my turn to take some shots." Drexler, who had scored just 14 points in Cougar victories over Arkansas and Rice, had told Coach Guy Lewis that he was due for a big night. He delivered, scoring 29 points and getting 12 rebounds. Seven-. foot Akeem Olajuwon had only eight points but grabbed eight rebounds and blocked nine shots. "I just wish some Baptist missionary in Nigeria had told me about him first," moaned Baylor Coach Jim Haller afterward. The Cougars stretched their Southwest Conference record to 9-0 with an 86-66 thrashing of Texas A&M in College Station. Second-place Arkansas, led by Darrell Walker's 14 points and seven rebounds, burned Rice in Fayetteville for the 18th straight time, 70-43.
Pittsburgh Guard Billy Culbertson knew that if the Panthers were to have a chance in their game against Big East leader St. John's, they would need a virtuoso performance from Center Andre Williams. Williams had been in a six-game scoring slump so woeful that many observers, even Pitt Coach Roy Chipman, questioned whether Williams was ready for the Big East's big-time competition. So on the day of the game, Culbertson began his psych job. "I kept telling him he was no good," said Culbertson. "I told him he had to drive and shoot." Culbertson's reverse psychology worked: Williams hit seven of 10 from the field and a perfect 10 of 10 from the line to lead Pitt to a 72-71 upset of St. John's.
The loss temporarily knocked the Redmen out of first place in the Big East, but they regained the lead with an 82-57 rout of Seton Hall at home. "I looked at the films of the loss to Pitt, and it just seemed that every move we made, we were one step behind them," said St. John's Coach Lou Carnesecca. "I don't know if that's mental or physical, but tonight we weren't a step behind anybody."
Villanova Forward Eddie Pinckney is called E-Z Ed by his teammates, but he was anything but easy on Georgetown. Pinckney scored 27 points, got 22 rebounds and blocked three shots in leading the Wildcats to a 68-67 comeback win. "This is my finest hour as a player," said Pinckney, "and I'm going to enjoy it." He triggered the win by hitting a pair of foul shots with eight seconds left and blocking a baseline jumper by the Hoyas' Michael Jackson at the other end with three seconds left. Villanova found the going rougher at Boston College; Pinckney hit just two of three shots and scored eight points in the 'Cat's 76-70 upset loss. On Sunday Georgetown beat DePaul in Landover, Md. 71-65 behind Patrick Ewing's 20 points.
North Carolina disposed of three more opponents, increasing its winning streak to 17 and giving Dean Smith a record 13 consecutive years of 20 or more wins as a coach. The Tar Heels beat Clemson 84-81, dusting off the Four Corners offense in the final 1:32 to protect its lead. North Carolina then steam-rolled two Southern Conference foes in the 25th annual north-south doubleheaders in Charlotte. On the first night Carolina blitzed the Citadel 81-36, limiting the Bulldogs to just 27.8% shooting from the floor. The next evening the Tar Heels mauled Furman 78-43, forcing the Paladins into 17 first-half turnovers and 32 overall.