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Your Late Week Basketball Open Thread

Give Us More of Your Patsies (oh and Gonzaga)

Milwaukee v Purdue
Most Big Ten teams against their opponents this week
Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images

Thursday, November 10

Charleston Southern Buccaneers at Ohio State Buckeyes, 5:30, BTN

MaximumSam: Ohio State welcomes in Charleston Southern, ranked 311 on Torvik. They are led by sophomore Claudell Harris, Jr., who went for 26 in their first game, a win over Toccoa Falls. Toccoa Falls? Everyone tries to schedule patsy teams.

BoilerUp89: I’d expect Ohio St to do at least as well as Toccoa Falls but I guess that’s why you play the game. A good strategy might be to let Tahlik Chavez take 12 three pointers like he did against Toccoa Falls. He made just one in that game.

Sacred Heart Pioneers at Rutgers Scarlet Knights, 6 pm

MaximumSam: Sacred Heart, I read, is a Catholic University in Connecticut. How did they get to be Pioneers? Why not Missionaries? Or Bishops? Anyway, they hit 275 on Torvik and are fresh off a hard fought win over Hartford. Rutgers should guard Joey Riley, who made five threes in that game.

BoilerUp89: Not sure where you are getting your information MaximumSam, but Sacred Heart is a teaching hospital. Their basketball team includes walk-on John Dorian and starter Turk Turkelton. Hartford’s coach resigned right before that game so I wouldn’t read too much into it.

MaximumSam: All my info comes from hobos and Alex Jones.

Loyola Maryland Greyhounds at Penn State Nittany Lions, 6 pm

MaximumSam: Loyola of Maryland is the worst of the Loyolas, but they are at 233 on Torvik and did give Depaul all they wanted in their first game, losing 72-66. They are led by seniors Ken Jones and Jaylin Andrews. Jones went for 20 against Depaul.

BoilerUp89: Loyola does have two 6’10” players that play so this will be a good early test of Penn State’s ability to defend people who are taller than them. I guess it’s even height if you believe Njie is actually 6’10”, but I’m pretty sure Penn State gave him a free inch on his official measurements.

Western Carolina Catamounts at Maryland Terrapins, 6 pm

MaximumSam: Catamount is an underrated word. We should work on bringing it back and referring to any big cat as a catamount instead of a cougar or panther or whatever. The Catamounts are led by Iowa State transfer guard Tre Jackson, and they did give Georgia a reasonable challenge in their first game despite clocking in at 287 on Torvik. Of course, Georgia sucks.

BoilerUp89: I’ve always preferred the Vermont version of the Catamounts ever since they upset Syracuse back in 2005. Purdue fans may remember Mardrez McBride who transferred into Western Carolina from North Texas. He’s a pretty good shooter but didn’t attempt a shot for the Catamounts in their opener.

Omaha Mavericks at Nebraska Cornhuskers, 7 pm

MaximumSam: Nebraska takes on their in-state rivals and will try to go 2-0. Omaha is ranked 336 on Torvik and is fresh off a beating from Kansas.

BoilerUp89: Omaha has a player named Tony Osburn. I’m pretty sure if he is announced as a starter for this game as “T. Osborn” that the Cornhuskers will lose. Grant Frickenstein is another great name but since he only got 1 minute against Kansas he probably won’t be playing a large role against Nebrasketball.

Bethune-Cookman Wildcats at Indiana Hoosiers, 7:30, BTN

MaximumSam: See? Isn’t Catamounts a much cooler name than Wildcats? We should petition Northwestern to become the Catamounts. Anyway, Bethune-Cookman is taking a tour of the “I” teams in the Big Ten, as they got whipped by Iowa and play Illinois later this year. Sadly, Joe French was just terrible against Iowa, but he has two more chances to showcase his skills and bring the French to the Big Ten.

BoilerUp89: If French couldn’t effectively score against Fran’s defense, how is he going to against any other B1G teams? BC is shooting 100% from the free throw line which if they keep that up will be a new NCAA record. I know, you guys are shocked.

Buffkomodo: This game serves as the tune up for the Xavier game next Friday night. Trayce Jackson-Davis comes in with serious questions about that thumb sprain. My thought is that he barely plays in this. Given how good Malik Reneau has been, it’s completely logical he shoulders some of TJD’s time in this one just so Trayce can rest that thumb a bit more. Either way, Indiana cruises in this one.

Friday, November 11

Michigan State Spartans v. Gonzaga Bulldogs On an Aircraft Carrier in San Diego, 5:30, ESPN

MaximumSam: The Zags come into this matchup ranked #2 in the nation and on KenPom, but are #1 on Torvik. They are a certified Good Team. Old man Drew Timme is back for his senior year and is one of the best centers in the country. He’s surrounded by a literal ton of returning experience. This is not a team that will be dependent on freshmen. They do have a couple transfers of note, most notably Malachi Smith, who comes over from Chattanooga. He went for 15 in their opening game and actually led the team in minutes.

There’s no doubt that this is an uphill battle for Sparty. Their question marks at center make for tough going against Timme, and because he’s surrounded by a lot of experience it’s hard to double him. Still, the Zags are often a bit light defensively, and MSU has good guards. It’s not advisable to get in a running game with the Zags, but getting them to move around on defense is probably the key to pulling an upset.

BoilerUp89: This is where I rant about playing a game on an aircraft carrier. Which is only my second least favorite “neutral” site game this weekend. I don’t like Michigan State’s chances because I don’t think they match up with Timme well.

Austin Peay Governors at Purdue Boilermakers, 6 pm, BTN

MaximumSam: Austin Peay got drilled by almost 50 against NC State, and were pretty putrid at nearly everything. They are 257th on Torvik, which is an improvement from last season. They do have a bit of size in Shon Robinson and Elijah Hutchins-Everett, so maybe they can get in the way of a few stray elbows.

BoilerUp89: A game against Austin Peay. Which gives me the opportunity to tell my dad’s favorite Austin Peay basketball story. Back in the 1970s, Austin Peay had a player named James “Fly” Williams. Williams was recruited to Austin Peay by ... I don’t believe this - assistant coach Leonard Hamilton! this story just got better.

Anyway, Fly Williams played just two seasons at Austin Peay and scored 1541 points in those two years. He led the Governors to consecutive NCAA tournaments. During his college career, the big cheer from the student section was: “The Fly is open, let’s go Peay!”

St. Francis Brooklyn Terriers at Minnesota Golden Gophers, 6 pm

MaximumSam: St. Francis of Brooklyn is the worst of the St. Francis teams, ranking 341st on Torvik. They did just post a forty point win against Mount Saint Mary’s. Hofstra transfer Zion Bethea went for 24, so the Gophers better be on Zion alert.

BoilerUp89: Never made the tournament member St. Francis Brooklyn broke college basketball hearts when they lost in their conference tournament final back in 2015. Since then they had just one winning season and that magical moment looks further away than ever.

Stanford Cardinal at Wisconsin Badgers, 6:30 pm, FS1

MaximumSam: Hello Non-Patsy! Stanford clocks in at 41st on Torvik, actually ahead of Wisconsin’s 54. They did get pushed in their first game against Pacific, and only won by 10. Davidson transfer Michael Jones led the team in minutes in that game, and went for 31 points. He’s the Certified Danger Man for the tree.

BoilerUp89: The Badgers play what KenPom is calling a “semi-home” game at the baseball field formerly known as Miller Park. I don’t know what it’s called now and don’t care. It’s part of a men’s and women’s doubleheader event for the Badgers. Why are the Badgers playing at a baseball field if they wanted to play in Milwaukee? Surely there is a pro sports arena in that city that would have been a better option. Was Marquette able to veto that idea? Michael Jones is good, but Harrison Ingram is pretty dangerous himself - even if it didn’t show in the Pacific opener.

Northern Illinois Huskies at Northwestern Wildcats (but wouldn’t Catamounts be cooler?), 7 pm

MaximumSam: Northern Illinois is the worst of the Illinois teams, checking in at 276 on Torvik. This is proven by the fact that they lost to Division II stalwart Illinois Springfield in their opener. The player to watch is David Coit, who went a truly insane 6-20 from three point land in their opening game. Pull, young man, pull.

BoilerUp89: Chicago State is higher? Really? A second consecutive in-state rivalry for the Northwestern Ninjas Napkins Nobles. Got it!

MaximumSam: Chicago State is not higher, but they are a Chicago team, or a State team, not an Illinois team. Those are the rules, as invented by OTE founder Woody Hayes.

MNWildcat: NIU is horrific, a statement I get to make as somebody who has actually watched a game, in person, at the NIU Convocation Center in DeKalb.

I hope we get to see the continued development of an inside game for Northwestern as well as the return of Julian Roper, hopefully giving the 'Cats an 8-man rotation.

North Carolina A&T Aggies at Iowa Hawkeyes, 7 pm

MaximumSam: A&T is pretty good for a Carolina team, hitting 215 on Torvik but fourth of the nine Carolina teams. They come off a blowout win over “Edward Waters,” which may be a school or just some hobo they found outside of Charlotte. The CDM is guard Demetric Horton, who went 5-7 from three and led the team in assists against Edward Waters.

Eastern Michigan Eagles at Michigan Wolverines, 8 pm, ESPNU

MaximumSam: Well, this is interesting. Uber-recruit Emoni Bates was born in Ann Arbor but eventually enrolled at Memphis. He struggled his first season with play on the court and with a back injury. He decided to transfer, but found few suitors, and decided to come back to the state of Michigan. And that’s how a five star recruit ended up at Eastern Michigan, the 279th ranked team on Torvik. Bates didn’t play their first game, a win over Wayne State, though it appears he will play against Michigan. Go get ‘em, young man.

BoilerUp89: Since MaximumSam has been telling you all how Northwestern should be renamed the Catamounts - and I do agree its better than Wildcats - we should take this moment to bring attention to Eastern Michigan’s criminal behavior with their nickname. They should be the Emus. When I’m elected dictator president of Earth, this will be my first executive order.

Kansas City Roos at Illinois Fighting Illini, 8 pm, BTN

MaximumSam: Illinois is really finding the bottom of Div. 1 college basketball. The Roos are ranked 333rd on Torvik, who are coming off a close loss to Div. II Lincoln Missouri. Not sure there is any Danger in this lineup, but we will go with Shemarri Allen, who led the team in points and minutes in their first game.

BoilerUp89: The Roos were good enough for the Hawkeyes to play a secret scrimmage against - so I don’t see why they aren’t good enough for Illinois to play in the regular season. Between Kansas City and Bethune Cookman, we will have enough data points to compare the I teams and speculate wildly about which one is actually the best.