DAILY DISH: Murray State beats up on Saint Mary’s, Michigan knocks off Ohio State

By: Kels Dayton

  • Murray State raced past St. Mary's on Saturday. (Steven Lance Denee/AP)

    Murray State lived up to the hype on Saturday, dominating No. 16 Saint Mary’s, 65-51 in a Bracket Busters showdown that had it all. An appearance from Dickie V; a net-cutting ceremony; even a video tribute to the seniors following the game. The Racers celebrated the Ohio Valley regular-season title they had already clinched, and showed Mr. Vitale the time of his life, or at least, his week. During the game, it was all about junior Isaiah Canaan, who scored a game-high 23 points and dished out 4 assists. The Racers (26-1, 13-1 OVC) earned another resume-building quality win and all but ensured themselves of an NCAA Tournament bid no matter what happens the rest of the way. “If we can finish the season strong, it gives us a chance to get a good seed,” said head coach Steve Prohm. The game was billed as something of a mid-major national championship, but Saint Mary’s (23-5) couldn’t match Murray State’s athleticism. The Gaels trailed by as many as 19, have now lost three of four and now face a cross-country trip back to Marauga, California. “This is definitely a confidence-builder, for sure,” said Murray State senior Jeuwon Long. “It’s a ranked team, so it lets you know that you are as good as the rankings say you are.”

  • Baylor missed another chance for a key win at home against K-State on Saturday. (AP Photo/LM Ortero)

    Baylor’s NCAA resume has taken a hit, and it will be interesting to see what the committee does with the Bears following their home loss to Kansas State on Saturday. Baylor (22-5, 9-5 Big 12) was ranked as high as No. 3 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches’ Poll in early January, but has dropped three of four and has been outclassed by fellow Big 12 contenders Kansas and Missouri. The Bears lost all four of their games with the Tigers and Jayhawks, three of those by double-digits. Somehow Baylor remains a Top 10 team, but with no signature wins and now five conference losses, their NCAA seeding likely won’t reflect that ranking unless they make a big push in the Big 12 tournament.

  • Trey Burke had 17 points in the Wolverines' 56-51 win over the Bucks.

    Ohio State keeps losing games that a national title contender should win. The Buckeyes were blitzed at Michigan Saturday, losing 56-51 and falling to 22-5, 10-4 in the Big Ten. OSU began the season as a Final Four favorite, but losses to Illinois, Michigan State and now Michigan may force people to re-think that when filling out their brackets in March. The Bucks just aren’t consistent enough offensively, and they miss the likes of Jon Diebler, who was a floor-stretching three-point specialist who made big man Jared Sullinger a nightmare cover inside. Michigan, on the other hand, remains undefeated in Ann Arbor, and at 10-4 also has a shot to capture the school’s first Big Ten championship since 1993.

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