Sunday, November 27th
Duke Blue Devils (6-1) v. Purdue Boilermakers, 2:30, ABC
MaximumSam: Purdue supposedly whipped Gonzaga Friday night. It’s 50/50 whether that occurred or is just a 4chan rumor gone wild. In any event, they play Duke this afternoon for the Phil Knight Legacy crown, which is disappointingly not just a big basket of Nike cash.
The Jon Scheyer led Dukies have been pretty mortal against teams with a pulse, including a loss to Kansas and close wins over Xavier (good) and Oregon State (not so good). They are led by five star freshman Kyle Filipowski, a 6’11’ center who is averaging a double double. Zach Edey would absolutely love to stuff this guy into a locker. Guard Jeremy Roach is their lead playmaker, though has been just average shooting the ball, and he’s joined by old friends Jacob Grandison and Ryan Young. Torvik calls this for Duke, 66-65.
BoilerUp89: Duke starts two 7 footers and a 6’8” guy at the SF position as well. And brings another 6’10” guy off the bench. This isn’t a good matchup for Mason Gillis who is just 6’6”. I’d expect a heavier dose of Furst and Kaufman-Renn than usual as a result. Filipowski has played really well this season, scoring both inside and on the perimeter. He is their starting PF despite being 7’0”. Dereck Lively is the starting center (since displacing Ryan Young from the starting lineup), but the freshman hasn’t been super effective this season. Mark Mitchell, Jeremy Roach, and Jaylen Blakes have all shown that they are capable of knocking down perimeter shots so Purdue is going to have to run those guys off the three point line.
The biggest thing for Purdue to win this game is to keep Duke off the offensive glass. They have been getting 44.4% of the rebounds on that end of the court. It’s the only thing that kept them in the game against Kansas and its arguably why they beat Oregon State. Brandon Newman’s defensive rebounding prowess will be needed in this one, but everyone is going to have to crash the defensive boards and box their guys out.
Portland Pilots (5-3) v. Michigan State Spartans (4-2), 4:30, ESPN
MaximumSam: Sparty goes for fifth place in the Phil Knight Invitational, which would get them a complimentary curly fry at Arby’s. They get the Pilots, who have been pretty punchy in this tourney by playing with North Carolina and beating Villanova. They have a trio of junior wing types who lead them in most everything, as well as freshman Juan Sebastian Gorosito, who’s shooting 48% from three. I hope the announcers call his whole name every time he touches the ball. Torvik says Sparty rolls, 79-67, though Torvik doesn’t know that they are still shorthanded without Malik Hall and Jaden Akins.
BoilerUp89: While Sparty almost certainly didn’t want to be playing the Pilots today, at least its for 5th place and not 7th. The Pilots beat Nova by shooting really well. If Michigan State can play their typical defense and force the Pilots to take contested shots they should be fine. Had this been a 3rd game in three days scenario, I’d think the Pilots legs would be gone.
Florida State Seminoles (1-6) v. Nebraska Cornhuskers (3-3), 6:30, ESPNN
MaximumSam: The last place game in the ESPN Invitational features the Huskers against FSU, who have been absolutely terrible. At 1-6 with losses to Troy, Stetson, and Siena, the Seminoles have struggled in pretty much every game on both sides of the ball. They have a couple guys who can shoot threes in Cam’Ron Fletcher (39%) and Darin Green (44%), but both of those guys have struggled scoring from other areas. They do have a 7’4’’ guy in Naheem McLeod who is Not Good but is Very Tall - might be the most interesting thing about this game. Torvik gives this one to the Huskers, 71-68.
BoilerUp89: I know FSU has a couple of big injuries and a suspension but I still don’t understand what is happening here. Leonard Hamilton is one of my favorite coaches and he hasn’t had a season go sideways this quickly in a long time.
TCU 79, Iowa 66
MaximumSam: The Hawkeyes got roughed up by TCU, who got to the glass and held Iowa to 3-17 from three. The McCaffery’s combined for zero points, so Fran probably got out the whooping switch after the game. Ahron Ulis was the lone bright spot, scoring 15 on 7-8 shooting.
BoilerUp89: Getting outrebounded by 13 didn’t help. Considering how poorly Iowa shot in this one, you wouldn’t think TCU would get more offensive rebounds in this one but they did. Kris Murray looked mortal, scoring just 11 points on 4 of 14 shooting (2 of 6 from three).