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The first seven minutes of Steve Stipanovich's Missouri career were miserable. During that span the much-heralded 6'11" freshman drew three fouls and failed to score against Southwest Texas State, which led by seven points. In the next 48 seconds, though, Stipanovich dumped in two field goals to get the Tigers—and himself—untracked. He wound up with 23 points as the Tigers won 86-70 and then added 19 as they beat South Dakota State 80-60. Another strong Big Eight team, Kansas, beat Nevada-Reno 93-75.
Metro Conference favorites Louisville and Virginia Tech were victorious, the Cardinals barely so. Louisville blew a 14-point lead over South Alabama, trailed 71-69 and needed a long jumper by Darrell Griffith and three foul shots by Scooter McCray to prevail 75-73. Tech dumped Campbell 87-62 as Wayne Robinson had 20 points.
"He's like a bumblebee in a jar," said Louisiana State Coach Dale Brown of multitalented De-Wayne Scales. In a 112-81 rout of SEC rival Florida, Scales buzzed and bombed his way to 30 points, sinking 14 of 16 field-goal attempts. Also in on the Gator raid was Durand Macklin, who had 25 points and 11 rebounds.
Although Indiana and Ohio State won by wide margins, neither was impressive in the first half. It was not until Mike Woodson got hot that the Hoosiers pulled away from Miami of Ohio. Ahead only 42-41, Indiana reeled off the next 16 points—eight of them by Woodson—and went on to an 80-52 victory. Ohio State fattened its 31-29 halftime lead by outscoring Ohio 22-8 during the first 10 minutes of the second half and won 78-51.
Guard Mickey Dillard, who broke his leg after two games last season, and 6'10" Elvis Rolle, a transfer from Oral Roberts, got Florida State off to a blazing start. With Dillard scoring 26 points and Rolle contributing 32—and sinking 12 of 15 shots—the Seminoles walloped Florida A&M 101-63.
Year after year Valparaiso takes on Notre Dame. And year after year the Crusaders get whipped. Not even 28 points by Jeff Simmons could keep the Irish from romping 92-66 this time. Kelly Tripucka had 22 points for Notre Dame, but it was a couple of freshmen who wowed the South Bend crowd. Tim Andree scored 13 points and John Paxson had 12 in limited action.