Five Predictions For The Pac-12 Conference In 2016
The 2016 College Football season is less than two weeks away as Hawaii and California kick off on August 26th (if you are watching in the US) in Sydney, Australia. Below are five predictions for Pac-12 Conference for the 2016 season. Some predictions will be right, some predictions will be wrong, and some will be spectacularly awful (or correct) by the end of the season.
There are no changes for the Pac-12 Conference as the twelve teams remain the same and are split into North and South Divisions. The six teams in the North Division are California, Oregon, Oregon State, Stanford, Washington, and Washington State. The six teams in the South Division are Arizona, Arizona State, Colorado, UCLA, USC, and Utah.
Here are five predictions for the Pac-12 Conference in 2016:
1. California and Oregon State will both miss a bowl game – California went 8-5 last year with Jared Goff throwing for 4,719 yards with 43 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. There was a lot of talent coming back in 2015 outside of Goff with eight starters on offense (put up 37.9 points and 529 yards per game) and nine on defense (gave up 30.7 points and 454 yards per game). That will change for 2016 as the offense has only four starters back while the defense has five. 2015 showed the best output on offense under Sonny Dykes and the best defense as well in his three years. It is hard to find six wins for Cal when they have to face both San Diego State (away) and Texas (home) in the non-conference schedule to go along with the nine conference games they will play.
For Oregon State, they had a miserable season going 2-10 overall and 0-9 in Pac-12 play in GaryAndersen’s first season. The offense put up only 19 points and 337 yards per game while the defense gave up 37 points and 482 yards per game, the highest total in nearly three decades (1987). Even with seven starters back on offense and six back on defense (had just two in 2015) they have to face Minnesota on the road and Boise State at home out of conference. Oregon State will be better, but it will not be enough to get to a bowl game.
2. Colorado will make a bowl game – This one is going to be close. Colorado will be in the fourth year of Mike MacIntyre and he has struggled to rebuild this team going 10-27 overall with a 2-25 conference record. 2016 will be his most experienced squad with nine starters back on both offense and defense. The offense has stagnated with the highest total coming in 2014 at 28.5 points and 439 yards a game. SefoLiufau is back for his fourth year at quarterback though he will be missing his top target in Nelson Spruce, who went to the NFL. The rest of the receivers are back including some new enrollees as is running back Phillip Lindsay (653 yards and 6 touchdowns in 2015).
The defense is where the biggest improvements have been made. They went from allowing 39 points and 461 yards per game in 2014 to 27.5 points and 417 yards per game in 2015. There is even more room for improvement as the Buffaloes return those nine starters and will be in their second year under defensive coordinator Jim Leavitt. The defense allowed 199 yards rushing per contest, but can improve on that with the return of five starters as well as 2012 through 2014 mainstay Josh Tupou. The entire secondary returns after improving their passing yards allowed per game by 38 yards and could improve again in 2016.
The schedule opens with Colorado State in Denver before a home game against Idaho State. They close their non-conference with a trip to Michigan before going on the road the next week to open Pac-12 play against Oregon. In total, they have four road games in-conference, which will help their chances. It will take wins against teams like Oregon State (home), Arizona State (home), Arizona (away), Washington State (home), and Utah (home) to get to six wins. They will need a few upsets to get to a bowl game, but Colorado can do it.
3. The duo of Christian McCaffrey and Royce Freeman will rush for a combined 4,000 yards – These two players had wonderful 2015 seasons. Christian McCaffrey ran for 2,019 yards and 8 touchdowns while also catching 45 passes for 645 yards and 5 touchdowns. We cannot forget his return abilities when he added in a combined 1,200 yards and two touchdowns. He was electrifying in 2015. RoyceFreeman did not get the same hype as McCaffrey, but he too was exciting to watch. He ran for 1,836 yards and 17 touchdowns while adding in another 26 receptions for 348 yards and 2 touchdowns.
What leads to this prediction is both Stanford and Oregon will have new quarterbacks. These two players were already likely to get a majority of the touches, but having new quarterbacks only makes it more likely for them to be relied upon. Even Oregon’s Mark Helfrich has made it known what his offensive game plan is for his quarterbacks. Sure the defenses will key in on these two, but these are guys are not easy to contain.
4. Washington will not win the Pac-12 – There is a lot of hype surrounding the Washington Huskies in 2016. Even ESPN wrote an article on the amount of hype the Huskies have around them this year. There is no doubt the Huskies have potential with 15 starters back (8 on offense and 7 on defense) including super sophomores Jake Browning at quarterback (2,955 yards with 16 touchdowns an 10 interceptions) and running back Myles Gaskin (1,302 yards and 14 touchdowns). The defense will be tough again in 2016 after allowing just 18.8 points and 452 yards per game last year.
The Huskies have five Pac-12 games in 2016 against Arizona, Oregon, Utah, California, and Washington State, which are all teams that made bowl games in 2015. Arizona and Utah will not be easy, but are games that should be won by Washington. Their toughest two will be against Oregon (a team they have not beaten since 2003) and Washington State in the Apple Cup (the Huskies have won three in a row and six of the last seven games). They also face Stanford and USC at home this year, which will not be easy even at Husky Stadium.
It feels like Washington is going to peak in 2017 rather than 2016. Even if the Huskies do win the Pac-12 North, they will have to defeat the South winner, which is likely to be UCLA or USC.
5. The Pac-12 will not make the College Football Playoffs – The Pac-12 conference schedule looks like it might cannibalize the conference and keep it out of the College Football Playoffs for the second straight year. Some teams even play a strong non-conference schedule that could provide more losses (or conversely impressive wins to factor in). Let’s take a look at all the contenders and their toughest games.
Stanford – They face Kansas State at home and Notre Dame on the road in their non-conference schedule. In conference, they play USC and Washington State at home while taking on UCLA, Arizona, and Oregon on the road.
Oregon – They face Nebraska on the road in non-conference while in Pac-12 they play Washington State, USC and Utah on the road. At home, they will play Washington and Stanford.
Washington – Their toughest non-conference game is Rutgers at home the opening week in what should be a comfortable win. They face Stanford and USC at home while playing Arizona, Oregon, Utah, and Washington State on the road.
UCLA – They face Texas A&M and BYU on the road as part of their non-conference schedule. In conference, they face Stanford, Arizona, Utah, and USC at home while taking on Washington State on the road.
USC – They open with Alabama in Arlington, Texas and also face Notre Dame at home to end the season. In conference, they have to face Utah, Arizona, Washington and UCLA on the road and play Oregon at home.
Utah – They face BYU at home as well as USC, Arizona, Washington, and Oregon at home in Pac-12 play. On the road, UCLA is their toughest opponent.
Some teams definitely have a manageable schedule, but the Pac-12 will need a team with one loss (preferably none) and that loss better not come in the Pac-12 Championship Game. If it does, it could mean the Pac-12 is left out of the College Football Playoffs for the second straight year.
The Prediction Schedule
With the Pac-12 predictions above, there are now predictions for nine conferences in the books. Below are the predictions completed and which conference is next.
We have reached part seventeen of Sports Enthusiasts’ 2015 College Football Preview. The Pac-12 South is on tap to be previewed as well as the Pac-12 Championship Game. The Previews will close out next week with the SEC. The entire schedule is below.
Todd Graham came in for the 2012 season and immediately made the offense better and also improved the defense. They went from 6-7 in 2011 to 8-5 in 2012. 2013 was even better when the Sun Devils went 10-4, but lost the Pac-12 Title Game, as well as Holiday Bowl. 2014 was another double digit win season with ASU going 10-3 thanks to a 36-31 win over Duke in the Sun Bowl. 2015 represents Graham’s most starters returning with 16 (previous high was 15 in 2013).
The offense will have seven starters back from a unit hat produced 36.9 points and 442 yards per game. Taylor Kelly is gone after an injury filled season, which saw Mike Bercovici play at quarterback. Bercovici threw for 1,445 yards with 12 touchdowns and 4 interceptions while returning this year to lead the offense. DJ Foster ran for 1,081 yards and 9 touchdowns, but has been moved to wide receiver while Demario Richard had 478 yards rushing and 4 touchdowns. Jaelen Strong was the top receiver last year with 1,165 yards and 10 touchdowns, but has moved on to the NFL. Foster was the second leading receiver with 62 catches for 688 yards and 3 touchdowns and should be one of the top receivers again in 2015 with the full-time move to the position. Also in the fold are Cameron Smith (41 catches for 596 yards and 6 touchdowns), Gary Chambers (10 catches for 204 yards and 2 touchdowns), Kody Kohl (16 catches for 167 yards and 4 touchdowns), and Ellis Jefferson (11 catches for 144 yards and 2 touchdowns). Three starters are back on the offensive line as well. While the loss of Strong hurts, there is plenty of talent and experience on the team to see the offense have a chance to be even more productive.
The defense has nine starters back, which is a vast improvement over last year. In 2014, the defense had only two starters returning and still gave up 27.9 points and 417 yards per game. Three starters are back on the defensive line led by Edmond Boateng (22 tackles and 2.5 sacks) and Tashon Smallwood (23 tackles and 2 sacks). The linebackers have two starters returning led by Salamo Fiso (83 tackles, 3.5 sacks, and 7.5 tackles for loss) and Antonio Longino (94 tackles, 2 sacks, and 3.5 tackles for loss). The secondary has three starters back led by Jordan Simone, who had 100 tackles (#2 on team), 1 sack, 3.5 tackles for loss, and 2 interceptions. The defense will probably be the key for ASU in 2015 if they are to contend for the Pac-12 title and they have an excellent chance at being even better than they were in 2014.
Arizona State opens the year in Houston, Texas to face Texas A&M. The final two non-conference games are at home against Cal Poly and New Mexico. In division, they face USC, Colorado, and Arizona at home while playing UCLA and Utah on the road. From the North, ASU has Oregon (home), Washington State (road), Washington (home), and California (road). The offense will be good enough for ASU to probably win most of their conference games and could set up a rematch of the Oregon game in the Pac-12 Championship Game.
2. UCLA Bruins
UCLA will be entering 2015 with Jim Mora in his fourth season. UCLA went 9-5 in year one during 2012 including a three point loss to Stanford in the Pac-12 Title Game. 2013 and 2014 produced identical 10-3 records with bowl victories each year. 2015 sees Mora have his most experienced team with 18 starters, which makes them a very dangerous team this year.
The offense for UCLA has 10 starters returning, but quarterback Brett Hundley (3,155 yards passing with 22 touchdowns and 5 interceptions; 644 yards rushing and 10 touchdowns) departs. The trio of JoshRosen, Jerry Neuheisel, and Asiantii Woulard will be battling to replace Hundley. The good news is the rest of the offense returns led by Paul Perkins at running back. Perkins ran for 1,575 yards and 9 touchdowns while also grabbing 26 catches for 201 yards and 2 touchdowns. The top five receivers all return led by Jordan Payton (67 catches for 954 yards and 7 touchdowns), Thomas Duarte (28 catches for 540 yards and 4 touchdowns), and Devin Fuller (59 catches for 447 yards and a touchdown). The entire offensive line returns as well. After putting up 33.4 points and 468 yards per game in 2014, the offense could reach those numbers again, but will need the quarterback to play very well right out of the gate.
The defense has eight starters back in 2015, just like they did last year. The 2014 version allowed 28.1 points and 399 yards per game. Two starters are back on the defensive line in Kenny Clark (58 tackles and 5.5 tackles for loss) and Eddie Vanderdoes (50 tackles, 2 sacks, 3.5 tackles for loss). At linebacker, two starters return including the versatile Myles Jack. Jack was second on the team with 88 tackles, but also had 8 tackles for loss, 7 pass breakups, and an interception (also had 113 yards rushing and 3 touchdowns). Also returning is Deon Hollins, who had 31 tackles, 9 sacks, and 2 pass breakups. The secondary has all four starters back after allowing 251 yards passing and 61.6% completions. Priest Willis (22 tackles), Fabian Moreau (53 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, and 8 pass breakups), Jaleel Wadood (59 tackles), and Randall Goforth (2013 starter with 78 tackles and 3 interceptions) will be in the secondary. After performing worse than expected in 2014, the defense should bounce back and could produce the best defense yet under Mora (2013 with 23.2 points and 386 yards per game allowed).
UCLA welcomes Virginia to LA before a road trip to UNLV in week two. Their final non-conference game is at home against BYU. Within the South division, UCLA faces Arizona, Utah, and USC on the road. At home, they will take on Arizona State and Colorado. From the North, UCLA draws Stanford (road), California (home), Oregon State (road), and Washington State (home). The games against Arizona State (10/3) and USC (11/28) are sure to decide if they make the Pac-12 Championship Game, which they definitely can.
3. USC Trojans
USC was crushed by NCAA sanctions in Lane Kiffin’s first two years, but they still managed to go 18-7 those two seasons including a 10-2 record in 2011. In 2012, they slumped to 7-6 after being considered as one of the top teams that year and Kiffin’s time ended in 2013 after the Arizona State game when they were 3-2. They finished the year 10-4 before hiring Steve Sarkisian prior to the 2014 season. Sarkisian went 9-4 in year one and the expectations are high for his second season in charge.
On offense, USC will have seven starters returning from a group that put up 35.8 points and 458 yards per game. Cody Kessler looked comfortable in the system throwing for 3,826 yards with 39 touchdowns and 5 interceptions. He loses three of his top five receivers including Nelson Agholor, who had 104 catches for 1,313 yards and 12 touchdowns. Juju Smith-Schuster is back to take one of the starting spots again after grabbing 54 passes for 724 yards and 5 touchdowns. Darreus Rogers had 21 catches for 245 yards and 4 touchdowns while Jalen Cope-Fitzpatrick, Steven Mitchell, and Adoree’ Jackson could make an impact in the passing game. The rushing game took a hit with Javorius “Buck” Allen leaving after rushing for 1,489 yards and 11 touchdowns in 2014. Justin Davis (595 yards and 4 touchdowns), JamesToland (102 yards), and Tre Madden (703 yards in 2013) are all expected to see action. The offensive line returns intact as well to help make holes for the rushing game and protect Kessler. The offense loses some big players at running back and wide receiver, but they could match last year’s numbers in year two of Sarkisian’s schemes.
The defense has seven starters back in 2015 after allowing 25.2 points and 408 yards per game. The two linemen returning are Antwaun Woods (37 tackles and 1 sack) and Delvon Simmons (4 tackles and 1 sack). Two linebackers also return in Anthony Sarao (74 tackles, 1 sack, and 2 interceptions) and Su’aCravens (68 tackles, 5 sacks, 12 tackles for loss, 9 pass breakups, and 3 interceptions). The secondary has three starters back including two-way play Adoree’ Jackson (49 tackles and 10 pass breakups), KevonSeymour (49 tackles and 13 pass breakups), and Leon McQuay (36 tackles, 4 pass breakups, and 2 interceptions). The defense should improve in 2015 with the new schemes under their belt and more depth as well.
USC opens with Arkansas State and Idaho at home the first two weeks before completing their non-conference slate on October 17 against Notre Dame on the road. Within their division, USC will face Arizona State and Colorado on the road while taking on Utah, Arizona, and UCLA at home. From the North, USC has to play Stanford (home), Washington (home), California (road), and Oregon (road). The talent is there for USC to win the division, but facing the top three from the North makes it harder for them to do it. However, do not count them out in year two under Steve Sarkisian.
4. Arizona Wildcats
Rich Rodriguez did not have a good time at Michigan going 15-22 with two losing seasons. After a year off in 2011, Rich Rod came back to coaching by taking over at Arizona, which was coming off a 4-8 record. Rich Rod has done well in his three years going 8-5 in both 2012 and 2013 while upping the record to 10-4 in 2014 with a Pac-12 Title Game appearance (lost 51-13 to Oregon).
Offense has not been an issue for Arizona in Rodriguez’s tenure. Last year, the offense put up 34.5 points and 464 yards per game and seven starters return from that group. Quarterback Anu Solomon threw for 3,793 yards with 28 touchdowns and 9 interceptions while also rushing for 291 yards and 2 touchdowns. He will be back along with last year’s top rusher in Nick Wilson, who had 1,375 yards and 16 touchdowns. The top receivers are back for Arizona with Cayleb Jones catching 73 passes for 1,019 yards and 9 touchdowns last year. The other is Samajie Grant, who had 45 catches for 718 yards and 6 touchdowns. The offensive line has only two starters back, but does have some transfers coming in. The offense has a great chance to produce higher numbers than the last two years.
The defense has not been bad under Rodriguez the last two years. In 2013, the defense allowed 24.2 points and 401 yards per game, but that was due to all 11 starters returning. Last year, the defense gave up 28.2 points and 451 yards per game with six starters back. That same number returns this year including the electric Scooby Wright at linebacker. He was named 1st Team All-American last year after recording 163 tackles, 14 sacks, and 15 tackles for loss! He will be joined by Derrick Turituri at linebacker after he had 44 tackles, 3 sacks, and 2 tackles for loss. On the line, three starters return led by Reggie Gilbert, who had 49 tackles, 3 sacks, and 2.5 tackles for loss. The other two starters will be joined by junior college transfers to give them solid depth on the line. The secondary has two starters back in William Parks (81 tackles, 1 sack, 12 tackles for loss, 8 pass breakups, and 2 interceptions) and Jarvis McCall (49 tackles and 7 pass breakups). The defense will probably have similar numbers to last year.
Arizona’s non-conference schedule consists of Texas-San Antonio (home), Nevada (road), and Northern Arizona (home). From the South, Arizona will have to play UCLA and Utah at home while going on the road to face Colorado, USC, and Arizona State. From the North, Arizona has to play Stanford (road), Oregon State (home), Washington State (home), and Washington (road). Arizona should be back in a bowl game in 2015 and could make some noise with an upset or two in the Pac-12.
5. Utah Utes
Kyle Wittingham has been the head coach at Utah since 2005. In that time, Utah has 85-43 with only two losing seasons and also transitioned from the Mountain West to Pac-12. The Utes went 8-5 in year one of their Pac-12 career in 2011, but dropped to 5-7 the next two seasons. 2014 was a much improved effort with Utah going 5-4 in conference and 9-4 overall. Despite that 5-4 record in conference, Utah still finished fifth in the South Division, but they were very good last season.
There will be seven starters back on offense from a group that put up 31.3 points and 388 yards per game. Travis Wilson threw for 2,170 yards with 18 touchdowns and 5 interceptions, but may find himself in a battle with Kendal Thompson (324 yards with 2 touchdowns and 2 interceptions). Devontae Booker is returning at running back as well after he ran for 1,512 yards and 10 touchdowns last year. Booker is also the second leading receiver that is coming back after grabbing 43 passes for 306 yards and 2 touchdowns. The top receiver this year will be Kenneth Scott, who had 48 catches for 506 yards and 4 touchdowns. The Utes did lose three of their top four receivers from 2014. The offensive line has four starters back and the offense will probably do well no matter who is at quarterback.
The defense will have seven starters returning after allowing 24.9 points and 393 yards per game in 2014. The line will have three starters back in Hunter Dimick (52 tackles, 10 sacks, and 4.5 tackles for loss), Lowell Lotulelei (33 tackles and 4 sacks), and Jason Fanaika (55 tackles, 5 sacks, and 4.5 tackles for loss). Also in the mix on the line will be UCLA transfer Kyle Fitts. Two are returning at linebacker led by Jared Norris, who had 116 tackles, 4 sacks, and 9 tackles for loss. The secondary has DominiqueHatfield (38 tackles, 9 pass breakups, and an interception), Marcus Williams (59 tackles), and GionniPaul (51 tackles and 4 interceptions) back. The defense will be solid again in 2015.
Utah will have an interesting non-conference schedule to set them up for Pac-12 play. They will face both Michigan and Utah State at home before a road game at Fresno State. From their division, Utah will face Arizona State, UCLA, and Colorado at home while playing USC and Arizona on the road. From the North, Utah has to play Oregon (road), California (home), Oregon State (home), and Washington (road). While it is hard to pick Utah fifth with a solid team, someone has to be put here. However, Utah is capable of pulling upsets (see UCLA and USC in 2014 and Stanford in 2013). Utah should not have trouble making a bowl game in 2015 and could make some noise in this tough Pac-12 South.
6. Colorado Buffaloes
It has been a rough decade for Colorado. They have not had a winning season since 2005 and only one bowl appearance in that time (2007 loss to Alabama 30-24). The Buffaloes entered the Pac-12 in 2011 with Jon Embree at the helm, but he struggled mightily with his final record being 4-21 in those two years. Mike MacIntyre was hired for the 2013 season and the Buffaloes won four games in 2013 to go 4-8 before falling to 2-10 last year. There are some positives for Colorado going forward in MacIntyre’s third year.
The offense for Colorado put up only 17.8 points and 303 yards per game in 2012. With the coaching change, those numbers increased to 25.4 points and 370 yards per game in 2013 before going even higher in 2014. There will be seven starters back from last year’s group that put up 28.5 points and 439 yards per game. Quarterback Sefo Liufau threw for 3,200 yards with 28 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. Three of the top four running backs return, but their output was poor last year. Christian Powell (448 yards and 4 touchdowns), Michael Adkins (398 yards and 3 touchdowns), and Phillip Lindsay (391 yards) will all be back as they look to increase production. The top two receivers return in Nelson Spruce (106 catches for 1,198 yards and 12 touchdowns) and Shay Fields (50 catches for 486 yards and 4 touchdowns). The offensive line has four starters back while the offense as a whole should be able to improve on last year’s numbers.
The defense has been the issue the last four seasons. In 2012, they gave up 46 points and 489 yards per game while those numbers went down to 38.3 points and 468 yards per game in 2013. 2014 was about the same with the defense surrendering 39 points and 461 yards per game. There will be nine starters back from that defense, which may or may not be a good thing. The defensive line has three starters back in Derek McCartney (24 tackles, 4.5 sacks, and 2 tackles for loss), Josh Tupou (28 tackles, 2 sacks, and 2 tackles for loss), and Jimmie Gilbert (27 tackles, 2.5 sacks, and 2.5 tackles for loss). The linebackers all return led by Kenneth Olugbode (70 tackles), Addison Gillam (64 tackles, 3.5 sacks, and 3.5 tackles for loss), and Chidobe Awuzie (62 tackles). The secondary has three starters back led by TedricThompson, who had 56 tackles and 3 interceptions last year. The defense should improve in 2015 with depth and experience both going upward.
Colorado begins the year on the road at Hawaii, which will allow them to have four non-conference games. They finish up the non-conference slate within the state of Colorado against Massachusetts (home), Colorado State (in Denver), and Nicholls State (home). In their division, Colorado has to face Arizona State, UCLA, and Utah on the road while playing Arizona and USC at home. From the North, Colorado has the quartet of Oregon (home), Oregon State (road), Stanford (home), and Washington State (road). It will be another rough year for Colorado in terms of their record, but they will be making strides this year to set them up for the next few seasons.
The Pac-12 South is very deep in terms of talent and experience, which made it hard to predict. Arizona State, UCLA, and USC seem to be the trio that stands out, but counting out Arizona and Utah would be a mistake. Colorado is clearly the worst team in the division and they will more than likely be back in the cellar this year. Below is the predicted order of finish for the Pac-12 South.
1. Arizona State
We predicted that Oregon would win the Pac-12 North and that will set up a Championship Game between them and Arizona State. That would be a wonderful game to see with plenty of offense on the field. We will call Oregon to win by a field goal if they were to meet and have a chance at making the College Football Playoff again.
Next week will wrap up our 2015 College Football Preview with the Southeastern Conference. Be sure to check that out on Tuesday (East) and Friday (West), respectively.
The Sun Devils were already behind the 8-ball in having to replace Jaelen Strong at receiver after he declared for the NFL Draft. Strong had 82 catches for 1,165 yards and 10 touchdowns in 2014. Running back D.J. Foster was second on the team in receiving with 62 catches for 688 yards and 3 touchdowns, but will get reps at wide receiver this spring.
Smith was third in 2014 with 41 catches for 596 yards and 6 touchdowns. Tight end Kody Kohl is now the second leading returning receiver with 16 catches for 167 yards and 4 touchdowns. Wide receiver FrederickGammage had 16 catches for 127 yards and a touchdown in 204.
Also competing for the starting wide receiver spots will be Gary Chambers (10 catches for 204 yards and 2 touchdowns), Ellis Jefferson (11 catches for 144 yards and 2 touchdowns), and junior college transfer Eric Lauderdale.
Arizona State’s spring practice will end on Friday, April 10 with the Spring Football game.
“Tempe police say Durant was arrested March 7 when officers were called to the scene after witnesses reported a man had struck a woman while they sat in a black SUV.
Durant told an officer he was arguing with his girlfriend in the car. According to the report, Durant’s girlfriend told police that the linebacker hit her in the face once and grabbed her around her neck.
The responding officer reported that Durant’s girlfriend had visible injuries, including a bruise below her left eye and bruising around her neck that was consistent with finger marks.”
Arizona State head coach Todd Graham said, “If a guy gets arrested, they understand they’re going to be suspended. Our standards are the highest. They’re a lot higher than just about anybody around and there’s accountability for those standards. If you’re going to come forward and make the stance that we do when it comes to character and respect, obviously, that’s something that’s very, very important to us. But also we owe it to our guys to let the (legal) process play itself out.”
Durant enrolled early at Arizona State, but is not listed on the roster. Durant was expected to start at the Devilbacker position, which according to Durant would allow to play all over the field. Durant was a transfer from Butler Community College in El Dorado, Kansas. His absence has allowed Ismael Murphy-Richardson to get the first team reps. Murphy-Richardson redshirted in 2014.
Below is the Ivy League Basketball Roundup for Sunday, December 28, 2014. After a short Christmas break the Ivy League is back in action with Columbia, Brown, Harvard, and Cornell playing.
Columbia Rallies In Second Half To Top Colgate
Columbia was able to overcome 26 points from Colgate’sEthanJacobs to secure the victory by a score of 69-64.
The first half was an even performance from both teams. Neither Colgate nor Columbia was able to assert themselves establish a commanding lead. Colgate led 14-9 with over 13 minutes to play, but an 8-2 run by Columbia gave them the lead at 17-16. Columbia led by as much as 4 points following back-to-back three pointers from Maodo Lo. The first half ended with Colgate leading 33-31.
Ethan Jacobs scored half of his 26 points in the first half on 5 of 8 shooting. The Raiders shot 60.9% from the field and hit 4 of 7 three pointers (57.1%). They committed only 5 turnovers in the first 20 minutes. The Lions were led by Lo’s 11 points on 4 of 7 shooting and 3 of 7 from behind the arc. Columbia shot 52% in the first half and made 5 of 12 three pointers (41.7%). They won on the glass 12-9 and committed 6 turnovers.
The second half began with Colgate taking a 36-31 lead before a 7-0 run by Columbia gave them the lead at 38-36. That run was fueled by 5 points from Kyle Castlin. Jacobs answered back with a three pointer for Colgate and a 39-38 lead. However, that would be the last time the Raiders led. The game continued to be close until the Lions pushed their lead to 12 points at 65-53 with 90 seconds left in the game. An 11-2 run by Colgate over the next 1:13 cut the deficit to 67-64. The were still nervy moments when Luke Roh stole the ball from Jeff Coby and pushed it to Ethan Jacobs for a game-tying three point attempt. The shot was no good and Lo drained two free throws to ice the game.
In the second half Jacobs once again led Colgate with 13 points. The Raiders shot 43.5% from the field and hit 4 of 8 three pointers (50%). They also committed only 4 turnovers. Kyle Castlin’s 10 points led Columbia in the second half while Cory Osetkowski finished with 8 points. The Lions shot 44.4% and hit 4 of 9 three pointers (44.4%). They made all 10 of their free throws, crushed Colgate on the glass 17-5, and committed 7 turnovers.
For the game, Jacobs finished with 26 points on 9 of 18 shooting and 5 of 10 from the perimeter. MattMcCullen finished with 12 points and 7 rebounds while both Austin Tillotson and Luke Roh had 10 points. The Raiders went 24 of 46 from the field (52.2%) and hit 8 of 15 three pointers (53.3%). They made 8 of 12 free throws (66.7%), had 11 assists, and committed only 9 turnovers.
Maodo Lo led Columbia with 15 points on 4 of 9 shooting (3 of 5 from behind the arc) and grabbed 6 rebounds. Cory Osetkowski scored 14 points, Steve Frankoski finished with 13 points, and Kyle Castlin had 12 points. Isaach Cohen finished with 5 points, but grabbed 8 rebounds and had 10 assists. The Lions went 25 of 52 from the field (48.1%) and hit 9 of 21 three pointers (42.9%). They went 10 of 12 from the charity stripe (83.3%), out-rebounded Colgate 33-16, had 16 assists, and committed 13 turnovers.
Colgate (3-10) has now lost three games in a row. They face Lehigh (6-5) on the road Wednesday night. Columbia (7-4) is now 6-1 at home this season and faces St. Francis (NY) (5-7) Tuesday night on the road.
Brown Beats Sacred Heart For Fourth Straight Victory
Leland King led Brown with 19 points and more importantly to a 79-76 win over Sacred Heart.
Prior to the under 12 timeout of the first half, Brown led 17-8. They continued to lead for the rest of the first half, but it oscillated between single and double digits. The Bears led 32-21 with over 5 minutes remaining before a 9-0 run by Sacred Heart brought the deficit down to 2 points. 8 of the 9 points came from EvanKelly and Cane Broome. The two teams continued to battle until the first half ended 40-37 in favor of Brown.
Cane Broome led the Pioneers with 14 points in the first half on 5 of 9 shooting. The Pioneers hit 43.8% of their shots and made 3 of 9 three pointers (33.3%). They made all 6 of their free throws, had 8 steals, and committed 12 turnovers. Leland King led Brown with 11 points in the first half on 5 of 8 shooting. The Bears shot 48.4% from the field and hit only 3 of 12 three pointers (25%). They made 7 of 10 free throws, had 9 steals, and committed 11 turnovers.
The second half began with Sacred Heart going on a 7-1 run to lead 44-41. The Bears responded with a 9-2 run of their own to reclaim the advantage at 50-46. The game continued to be a battle with the Pioneers retaking the lead 60-55 and nearly holding it for the rest of the game. The final few minutes produced a back and forth affair with Brown taking the lead 68-67 on Rafael Maia’s. Cane Broome’s three pointer tied the game at 72 before back-to-back buckets from Tavon Blackmon and Leland King gave Brown the 76-72 lead. Blackmon hit two late free throws to seal the win for the Bears.
In the second half Sacred Heart was led with 9 points from a trio of players. Tevin Falzon, Cane Broome, and Evan Kelley all finished on 9 points. The Pioneers hit 48.4% of their shots and made 4 of 9 three pointers (44.4%). They had 6 steals and committed 6 turnovers. Steven Spieth had 9 points to lead Brown in the final 20 minutes. King finished with 8 points while Maia and Blackmon both had 7 points. The Bears shot 48.1% in the second half and hit 2 of 6 three pointers (33.3%). They won the rebound battle 18-14 and had 7 turnovers.
For the game, Cane Broome led Sacred Heart with 23 points on 9 of 15 shooting. Evan Kelley finished with 17 points while Tevin Falzon scored 13 points. The Pioneers went 29 of 63 from the field (46%) and hit 7 of 18 three pointers (38.9%). They went 11 of 13 from the free throw line (84.6%). They had 18 assists, made 14 steals, and committed 18 turnovers.
Brown had 4 players finish in double figures with Leland King’s 19 points and 9 rebounds leading the way. He made those 19 points on 9 of 14 shooting. Rafael Maia had 13 points and 9 rebounds, Steven Spieth had 13 points, and Tavon Blackmon had 13 points and 8 assists. Cedric Kuakumensah finished with 9 points and 7 rebounds. The Bears went 28 of 58 from the field (48.3%) and hit 5 of 18 three pointers (27.8%). They made 18 of 27 free throws (66.7%), out-rebounded the Pioneers slightly 35-34, had 15 assists, made 13 steals, and committed 18 turnovers.
Sacred Heart (6-6) faces another Ivy League team on Tuesday night in Yale (9-4). Brown (7-6) has won 4 straight games and 6 of their last 7 games after starting 1-5. They face Rhode Island (7-3) Wednesday night on the road.
Harvard Drops Another Big Game On The Road
After last week’s horrendous game at Virginia, Harvard looked to bounce back. Once again, a poor shooting half led them to defeat, but this time it was the second half. Arizona State won 56-46 after Harvard shot 26.1% in the final 20 minutes.
Harvard got off to a solid start taking a 5-0 lead while it took the Sun Devils 3:31 to get their first points. Still, it was an even battle for much of the first half until Arizona State jumped out to a 30-23 lead after going 10-2 run. Harvard made a small rally of 6-2 to end the half, but still trailed 32-28 at the break.
Wesley Saunders led the Crimson with 13 points while Siyani Chambers scored 10. Harvard shot 47.6% from the field and made 3 of 4 three pointers (75%). They blocked 6 shots, but also committed 6 turnovers. Roosevelt Scott and Shaquielle McKissic led ASU with 8 points apiece. The Sun Devils shot 41.9% from the field and hit 3 of 7 three pointers (42.9%). They out-rebounded Harvard 18-12 and committed 5 turnovers.
The second half was a grind for both teams. Harvard closed it to a 38-37 game following Corbin Miller’s three pointer with 14:42 remaining. Several minutes later, two buckets from Gerry Blakes gave ASU a 47-39 lead. The Crimson cut it back to 47-43, but they struggled down the stretch scoring only 3 points in the final 7 minutes and lost 56-46.
In the second half, Corbin Miller scored 7 points to lead Harvard. The Crimson made only 6 buckets out of 23 attempts (26.1%) and made 2 of 7 three pointers (28.6%). They committed 8 turnovers in the second half. Gerry Blakes led ASU in the second half with 9 points while Savon Goodman contributed 8 points and 6 rebounds. The Sun Devils shot 39.1% from the field and hit 1 of 5 three pointers (20%). They out-rebounded Harvard 22-11 and committed 11 turnovers.
Wesley Saunders led Harvard with 15 points for the game, but 13 of those came in the first half. Siyani Chambers scored 10 points with all of those coming in the first 20 minutes. The Crimson went 16 of 44 from the field (36.4%) and hit 5 of 11 three pointers (45.5%). They made 9 of 15 free throws (60%), blocked 10 shots (4 by Steve Moundou-Missi), and committed 14 turnovers.
The Sun Devils had 4 players score in double digits. Shaquielle McKissic and Gerry Blakes finished with 13 points while Savon Goodman and Roosevelt Scott scored 10 points. ASU went 22 of 54 from the field (40.7%) and made 4 of 12 three pointers (33.3%). They went 8 of 11 from the free throw line, crushed Harvard on the glass 40-23, and committed 16 turnovers.
Harvard (7-3) has dropped back-to-back games after starting 7-1. They face Grand Canyon (8-7) Tuesday night on the road. Arizona State (8-5) opens Pac-12 play next Sunday against Arizona (12-1) in Tuscon.
Cornell Drops Low Scoring Affair To Saint Peter’s In Overtime
24 points from Shonn Miller was not enough for Cornell to dispatch St. Peter’s. The Peacocks won in overtime 59-52.
The first half was a poor shooting performance from both teams. The first points came after 2:09 elapsed on the clock when Robert Hatter made a layup. At the under 12 timeout it was 4-3 in favor of Cornell while the under 8 TV timeout provided a score of 7-5 in favor of Cornell. The remainder of the half was better from both teams with neither team getting a solid advantage. Cornell lead 17-15 at the break.
Tyler Gaskins scored 7 points in the first half to lead St. Peter’s. They shot 26.1% from the field on 6 of 23 shooting and hit only 2 of 8 three pointers (25%). They committed 9 turnovers as well. The Big Red were led by Shonn Miller’s 8 points while they shot 7 of 19 from the field (36.8%). They hit 3 of 6 three pointers (50%), out-rebounded St. Peter’s 13-12, and committed 12 turnovers.
The second half was far better for both teams from the field, but once again neither team was able to take control of the game. Cornell led 32-28 before two three pointers from Gaskins on either side of a Shonn Miller jumper tied the game at 34. With less than a minute remaining Desi Washington sank two free throws to give St. Peter’s a 45-42 lead. Miller came to the rescue for the Big Red by draining a three pointer with 29 seconds left. Regulation ended tied at 45 points.
In the overtime session, St. Peter’s scored 5 points in the first 1:13 to seize control of the game at 50-45. The next two and a half minutes consisted of more bricks by both teams before the final 1:03 gave St. Peter’s enough free throw attempts to salt the game away. The Peacocks hit 9 of 10 free throws in overtime to secure the victory.
Marvin Dominique led St. Peter’s with 17 points and 9 rebounds. Tyler Gaskins scored 16 points while grabbing 7 rebounds. Desi Washington finished with 13 points. The Peacocks went 15 of 52 from the field (28.8%) and hit 8 of 19 three pointers (42.1%). They made 21 of 28 free throws (75%), had 12 steals, and committed 13 turnover.
Shonn Miller scored 24 points for Cornell on 8 of 16 shooting. He also corralled 11 rebounds for his double-double of the season. Devin Cherry scored 14 points and grabbed 6 rebounds. The Big Red went 16 of 48 from the field (33.3%), made 5 of 20 three pointers (25%), and hit 15 of 22 free throws (68.2%). Both teams grabbed 38 rebounds while Cornell turned the ball over 20 times.
Saint Peter’s (6-7) faces Quinnipiac (5-5) Friday on the road. Cornell (6-6) has lost two of their last three games and it will more than likely be 3 of the last 4 with their next game at Syracuse (8-4) on Wednesday.