Sunday, May 24, 2015

NCAA Early Thursday Matchups

A statistical look at the NCAA's Thursday afternoon matchups.

NCAA Early Thursday Matchups

Facts, stats and fun stuff culled from, among other sources, the thumbnails on all 68 NCAA teams put together by the Daily News sports staff — East, South, Midwest, West. Thursday evening matchups will post at 4 p.m.

12:15 (CBS) Murray State vs. Colorado State
   BoopNotes: MSU
first-year head coach Steve Prohm must have the highest career winning percentage (.968) of any coach, any sport, any continent, any planet ... CSU was where the 1977 Robby Benson film “One on One” was filmed. The soundtrack (by Seals and Crofts) is playing via YouTube as I type this ... The Rams have the best free-throw shooting in the tourney (76.9%).

12:40 (TRU) Kansas State vs. Southern Mississippi
   BoopNotes: K-State was founded in 1863. It’s current enrollment is 23,863. Since Jan. 1, Kansas Pick 3 winning numbers have included: 883, 860, 861, 893 and 843 ... SMU was the only Division I school in the country to finish 2011-12 unbeaten at home in both men’s basketball (15-0) and football (6-0).

1:40 (TBS) Louisville vs. Davidson
   BoopNotes: Davidson head coach Bob McKillop was among the last players cut in preseason by the 1972-73 Sixers. His team this year has nearly three times as many wins (25-7) as that Sixers team (9-73) ... Louisville shot an school-record low 31.07% from the three-point line.

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2:10 (TNT) Wisconsin vs. Montana
   BoopNotes: UW has the lowest winning score in an NCAA men’s Division I title game, having beaten Washington State, 39-34, in 1941 ... We have found our coach for the all-time all-name team: Montana’s Wayne Tinkle ... John Stockton’s nephew Shawn is Montana’s sixth man; his son David plays for Gonzaga. They are destined to meet in the East Regional final.

2:45 (CBS) Marquette vs. Brigham Young
   BoopNotes: Marquette had 98 more assists and 116 fewer turnovers than their opponents ... BYU’s 6-8 forward Noah Hartsock has 176 career blocks, one behind former Sixer bust Shawn Bradley for the school’s all-time record.

3:10 (TRU) Syracuse vs. UNC Asheville
   BoopNotes: Orangemen (17-1) tied a Big East record for fewest conference losses (UConn 1996, 17-1; St. John’s 1985, 15-1; three in 1979-80, 5-1) ... UNCA has no height whatsoever (no one over 6-5 gets any significant minutes), yet they managed to outrebound their opponents by 46 ... Four UNCA players have 75 or more assists this season.

4:10 (TBS) New Mexico vs. Long Beach State
   BoopNotes: NMU head coach Steve Alford is 205 games over .500 (433-228) ... Lobo is Spanish for “wolf;” good to know ... LBSU coach Dan Monson has also taken Gonzaga (1999) and Minnesota (2005) into the Big Dance.

4:40 (TNT) Vanderbilt vs. Harvard
   BoopNotes: Vandy has five seniors and a junior at the top of their rotation ... John Jenkins (19.9) and Jeffery Taylor (16.4) finished 1-2 in the SEC in scoring ... Harvard is making its first NCAA appearance since 1946, 57 years before Facebook was created.

About this blog

Boop – who goes by Bob Vetrone Jr. when he is undercover or paying bills – has been at the Daily News since 1982, after working for five years at the Philadelphia Bulletin up to its closing. Along with helping to build the sports scoreboards most nights, he has had great input into the papers’ special sports pullouts – March Madness, Broad Street Run, Record Breakers, Greatest Moments – as well as its day-to-day, award-winning event coverage.

A 1980 graduate of North Catholic, he took some evening college courses. Those lasted right up until the first conflict with a Big 5 doubleheader.

His favorite books growing up were the NBA Guide and the Baseball Encyclopedia, which was, for all intents and purposes, the Internet before there was an Internet.

He has been immersed in sports statistics since the early 70s, when his father (long-time sports writer, broadcaster and the Daily News’ Buck The Bartender), would take him into the Bulletin newsroom overnight in the summer and let him update the Phillies statistics in a little, black spiral notebook. But things have changed tremendously in the decades since … He now uses a big, black spiral notebook.

To listen to Boop on 94WIP, click here.

Reach Bob at vetronb@phillynews.com.

Bob Vetrone Jr.
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