Miami's bid for No. 1, Notre Dame's marathon win over Louisville highlight week
The most important number of the week may as well be five: As in five overtimes to settle Notre Dame’s win over Louisville in the longest game since UConn and Syracuse played six OTs in the Big East quarterfinals in 2009.
The first 40 minutes crawled along with only 120 points in regulation before Notre Dame walked away with a 104-101 win in the final 25 minutes.
But the key number of the week could just as well be six if there is a change atop the Associated Press top 25. Five consecutive polls have featured a new No. 1 from Duke to Louisville back to Duke to Michigan and Indiana. If the Hoosiers remain No. 1, they will be the first team to stay at that spot since Duke did it from Dec. 17-Jan. 7.
The Hoosiers defeated Ohio State on the road Sunday but lost in the final seconds to Illinois, putting Indiana’s ranking at stake. If not Indiana, Miami could claim the No. 1 spot. Led by guard Shane Larkin, the Hurricanes are one of nine teams with an unblemished conference record and the only one from a power conference.
Here’s a look at the other key numbers from the past week in college basketball:
22. Minutes Notre Dame’s Garrick Sherman played in overtime after sitting all of regulation
A senior center from Kenton, Ohio, who had played 275 total minutes in the last two seasons, ended up being one of the difference makers in Notre Dame’s five-overtime win over Louisville on Saturday night. Garrick Sherman entered the game with 1:57 left in overtime and scored 17 points and adding six rebounds in 22 minutes. Four players for Notre Dame, including starting forwards Jack Cooley and Tom Knight fouled out, giving Sherman his break. After sitting all of 2011-12 after his transfer from Michigan State, Sherman averaged 15.3 minutes per game and hadn’t even played in four of the last six games entering overtime against Louisville.
12. Points Notre Dame’s Jerian Grant scored in the final 45 seconds of regulation
If Sherman’s out-of-nowhere 17 points against Louisville isn’t the most telling stat of the wild five-overtime Irish win, may be this one is. Grant started the game 0 of 6 from the field before scoring 12 points in the final 45 seconds. Grant went 3 for 3 from three-point range and added a layup and a free throw in the three-point play to tie the game at 60 to force OT.
1.1. An upsetting number and a crazy coincidence
Two of the most important developments of the week were Indiana’s collapse against Illinois for a 74-72 loss on Thursday and Kansas' loss to RPI No. 213 TCU on Wednesday. According to tempo-free stat guru Ken Pomeroy, Illinois had a 1.1 percent chance of defeating Indiana when the Hoosiers held a 70-62 lead with three minutes left. Of course, Illinois won. Elsewhere, Kansas entered the week with a 1.1 percent chance, according to Pomeroy’s numbers, to lose to both TCU and Oklahoma this week. The 98.9 percent odds went against KU the same way they went against IU. Creepy.
According to the excellent statistics of @kenpomeroy, Illinois had only a 1.1% chance of beating IU with 3min left. Amazing comeback!— Daniel Borup (@daniel_borup) February 9, 2013
1. Team since the start of ACC in 1953-54 play to defeat Duke and North Carolina by 25 points in the same season.
Before this year, Miami spent eight mostly undistinguished seasons in the ACC. Now, the Hurricanes have set a historic mark. Miami is the first team to defeat Duke and North Carolina by at least 25 points in the same season since ACC play began in 1953-54. Keep in mind: Miami didn’t even have a basketball team from 1971-85, a time when Dean Smith won the national title and Duke hired Mike Krzyzewski. Miami defeated Duke 90-63 on Jan. 23 and North Carolina 87-61 on Saturday.
82.7. Cody Zeller and Victor Oladipo’s combined true shooting percentage against Ohio State
Indiana center Cody Zeller and guard Victor Oladipo were perhaps the most efficient pair of the weekend. Zeller was 8 of 11 from the field and 8 of 11 from the free throw line for 24 points in the 81-68 win over Ohio State in Columbus. Oladpio was even better, going 8 of 10 from the field and 9 of 10 from the free throw line for 26 points. Combined, the Indiana pair had a true shooting percentage of 82.7 percent. True shooting percentage is a statistic used to measure a player’s efficiency from the field combined with the free throw line. For reference, Belmont’s Ian Clark leads the nation in true shooting percentage at 73.2 percent. Only six players nationally -- including Oladipo -- have a true shooting percentage of greater than 70 percent.
0.894. Michigan’s points per possession against Wisconsin
Michigan is among the most efficient offensive teams in the country, but Wisconsin befuddled Trey Burke and Co. on Saturday. Michigan averages 1.167 points per possession this season -- second only to Indiana -- but the Wolverines managed only 0.894 points per possession in the 65-62 loss in overtime to the Badgers. Michigan’s 62 points tied for its second-lowest total of the season.
3. Losses in a row for Kansas, its longest streak since 2005
Kansas lost 72-66 to Oklahoma on Saturday, giving the Jayhawks a three-game losing streak with a home loss to Oklahoma State and a shocking upset to TCU. Kansas hasn’t lost three in a row since Feb. 14-21, 2005 when Bill Self’s second team in Lawrence lost to Texas Tech in double overtime, Iowa State in overtime and Oklahoma in regulation. Not that a losing streak is a bad omen: Kansas’ last four-game losing streak was in 1987-88 when the Jayhawks and Danny Manning went on to win the national title. Kansas faces Kansas State on Monday.
4,493. Career points for Stephen and Seth Curry, a record for brothers.
With 18 points from Duke’s Seth Curry against Boston College, the Currys became the highest scoring set of brothers in Division I history. Seth (Liberty/Duke) has 1,858 career points and Stephen Curry (Davidson) had 2,635. Tyler Hansbrough (North Carolina) and Ben Hansbrough (Mississippi State/Notre Dame) held the previous record with 4,485 career points.
10-3, 1-12. Arkansas coach Mike Anderson’s home/road splits in the SEC
Nothing illustrated Arkansas home/road split identity than the Razorbacks’ last week. On Tuesday, Arkansas defeated Florida 80-69 in Fayetteville. The Gators had defeated every other SEC opponent by at least 14 points. The Hogs followed the upset by losing 67-49 on the road to Vanderbilt, one of the worst teams in the SEC. In a season and a half, Anderson is 10-3 at home in SEC play and 1-12 on the road. This is not an isolated record: Anderson was 29-11 at home in Big 12 play at Missouri and 14-26 on the road.
158. Points scored by Virginia last week
Tony Bennett’s teams aren’t the most fun to watch play on offense, but for at least a week, Virginia looked like an offensive juggernaut. The Cavaliers, who entered the week averaging 63.2 points per game, defeated Clemson 78-41 on Thursday and defeated Maryland 80-69 on Sunday. The 158 points in a two game span is the most for a Bennett-coached team since Washington State scored a combined 160 points against Boise State and Idaho on Nov. 13-16, 2007.