Bengals open as favorites over Browns

Published: Tuesday, September 26, 2017 @ 9:17 AM

Cincinnati Bengals' Andy Dalton throws past Green Bay Packers' Ricky Jean Francois during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017, in Green Bay, Wis.
AP Photo/Matt Ludtke
Cincinnati Bengals' Andy Dalton throws past Green Bay Packers' Ricky Jean Francois during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017, in Green Bay, Wis.(AP Photo/Matt Ludtke)

In the duel between too hapless in-state foes, the Bengals are the favorites over the Browns.

The Bengals are favored by four points, per BookMaker.Eu, in a battle of winless teams. The game’s over/under is 40 - considering both team’s offenses, that’s a tricky number.

Whichever 0-3 team loses this Sunday can begin looking toward the draft. The other has an extremely slight chance of salvaging its season. The pressure is on in just Week 4.


Huskies earn third Pac-12 road win over Colorado; 3 things we learned

Published: Saturday, January 20, 2018 @ 4:18 PM

The Washington Huskies beat the Colorado Buffaloes 72-62 on Saturday, improving their record to 14-6 overall and 4-3 in Pac-12 play while also snapping a 2-game losing streak.

Here’s what we learned about Washington in its win:

1) Washington is showing poise on the road

Coming into this year, the Huskies had lost 14-straight road games within the Pac-12.

That narrative has reversed this year, as Washington is 3-1 away from its home court in conference action so far. The Huskies’ lone loss on the road in the Pac-12 was a 70-62 loss at Utah earlier this week, while Washington won at UCLA and Washington State.

2) Jaylen Nowell is remaining efficient

For the 13th consecutive game, Jaylen Nowell reached double figures as he led Washington with 19 points while adding 7 rebounds.

Nowell is averaging 16.7 points per game this year and has been one of the most reliable players in the Pac-12 this season. He’s currently 11th in the conference in scoring, so expect the Huskies to continue to lean on him.

3) The Huskies’ rebounding can save them

Washington dominated the glass against Colorado, winning the rebounding battle 50-34. That included 16 offensive rebounds.

Noah Dickerson led Washington with a game-high 14 rebounds while Matisse Thybulle added 10 boards.

The Huskies started the game just 4-of-20 from the field before finishing at 42 percent for the game. If Washington can keep pulling down the boards at a high clip, that can hedge off nights from the field.

Former Penn State S Troy Apke wins NFLPA Collegiate Bowl MVP

Published: Saturday, January 20, 2018 @ 3:44 PM

After each college football season, numerous postseason all-star games take place leading up to the NFL draft each April. One such game is the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl, and former Penn State safety Troy Apke showed scouts why he belongs at the next level.

The National squad faced the American team, and Apke’s National side won the game convincingly, 23-0. Apke was the only Nittany Lions player on the field in the game, and he represented Penn State well, winning the game’s MVP.

Apke intercepted a pass and returned it 56 yards en route to his MVP-winning performance. The 6-foot-1 playmaking safety was a senior at Penn State this past year and recorded 55 tackles, fourth most on the team.

He also had an interception, blocked kick and 6 pass deflections in 2017 and appeared in 46 games in his Nittany Lions career.

Kentucky-Florida basketball: Live updates, score, stats

Published: Saturday, January 20, 2018 @ 2:21 PM

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No. 18 Kentucky basketball plays Florida at 8:15 p.m. ET on Saturday, January 20, 2018. Follow along below for the score, live updates and stats from the game.

Kentucky-Florida score, live updates, stats

Florida 45, Kentucky 43, 11:46 2H: Sacha Killeya-Jones has given the Wildcats a spark with some strong defense in the paint and a pair of putbacks to spark a 6-0 UK burst. Kentucky needed that. After its eight-point lead with 5:05 to go in the first half, UF launched a 29-5 run during which the Cats dropped from 50 percent shooting to 3 of 15 while the Gators made their move. SKJ has 7 points and 3 rebounds (2 offensive) in 11 minutes off the bench, and fellow sophomore Wenyen Gabriel has 7 points, 6 boards in 12 minutes off the bench. The “vets” coming up big tonight. Here’s your updated box score:

Florida 45, Kentucky 37, 15:24 2H: Richards is still beasting — monster put-back dunk on a missed 3-pointer (UK 0 for 8 tonight) and another nasty one off a Gilgeous-Alexander lob — but Florida is hitting everything (and getting every loose ball) and the Cats aren’t making much at all. On the bright side, Richards has 6 points, 6 rebounds and 2 blocks in his best overall game in a while.

HALFTIME: Florida 33, Kentucky 31

The (almost) full-strength Wildcats were looking pretty darn good with a 28-20 lead and 5:05 to go in the first half. Then they uncorked four quick turnovers, bookended by missed 3-pointers, during a 9-0 Florida run to take the lead in the span of 2 minutes, 45 seconds. Kentucky missed its last six shots of the first half and the Gators ended on a 13-3 burst. In the Cats’ last 60 minutes of basketball, they’ve made just 1 of 17 3-pointers, which is problematic. Here’s the full halftime box score (and shot chart):

 

Kentucky 28, Florida 24, 4:23 1H: Y’all won’t believe this, but getting two 5-star guys back from injury makes Kentucky a different team. Quade Green and Jarred Vanderbilt are really giving the Cats a lift. Vanderbilt has 4 points and 4 rebounds in 4 minutes (which makes it 10 points, 9 rebounds, 3 assists in 18 career minutes), including a drive and crazy banked-in shot off the very top of the backboard that seemed impossible. Green’s lob to SKJ for a bucket and foul capped a 7-0 UK run for a brief 28-10 lead.

Kentucky 21, Florida 20, 7:22 1H: Nick Richards, the slumping 7-footer who bounced back a bit with 12 points at South Carolina, is playing hard early. He has 2 rebounds (1 offensive), 2 blocks and an assist. He told us yesterday that he’s trying to take the weight of the world off his shoulders, stop thinking so much, and just play loose. It seems to be working.

Kentucky 17, Florida 14, 11:54 1H: Wenyen Gabriel and Jarred Vanderbilt giving the Cats a huge lift off the bench — and getting the crowd roaring — as Gabriel scored three straight buckets in the paint and Vanderbilt threw down a putback dunk with a scream. Gabriel has 7 points in 3 minutes.

Florida 10, Kentucky 8, 14:45 1H: The Cats are off to a solid start offensively, including 4 points (and 2 rebounds) from Kevin Knox, but they might want to check 6-8 forward Keith Stone, who has 8 of 10 Gators points and a pair of 3-pointers. Oh, and 5-star Zion Williamson has committed to … Duke in a stunner. The Blue Devils have landed the top three and 4 of the top 8 players in the Class of 2018. Nuts.

Starting Five: Same five for the fourth straight game: SGA, Diallo, Knox, Washington and Richards — but another indication Green will play for the Cats tonight.

#QuadeWatch: He led the Cats out of the locker room for the layup line about 25 minutes before tip-off and looks loose, energetic and bouncy. He’s moving fine, swishing some threes, goofing around with teammates. Would be sort of surprising if he doesn’t play tonight, which is huge against a loaded Florida backcourt.

For once, #VandoWatch is not necessary. Jarred Vanderbilt made his debut on Tuesday night and will likely play even more minutes against the Gators. So now it’s #QuadeGreenWatch. The starting point guard has missed the last three games with a back injury, but he’s been out working with his teammates here at Rupp Arena before the game.

Kentucky-Florida game time, details

  • Time: 8:15 p.m. ET
  • Date: Saturday, Jan. 20, 2018
  • Location: Rupp Arena (23,000), Lexington, Ky.
  • Records: Kentucky 14-4, 4-2 SEC; Florida 13-5, 5-1 SEC
  • Favorite: Cats by 3

What TV channel is Kentucky-Florida on? 

You can watch Kentucky vs. Florida on ESPN. Dan Shulman, Jay Bilas and Maria Taylor will be on the call.

How can I watch Kentucky-Florida online?

Stream Kentucky vs. Florida on ESPN3.com and the WatchESPN app.

How can I listen to Kentucky-Florida on the radio? 

Kentucky and Florida will be broadcast on the UK Sports Network. That’s 630-AM on Lexington radio and can be streamed at iHeart Radio. You can also listen on XM channel 190 and Sirius channel 137.

Kentucky-Florida preview

  • Calipari said starting point guard Quade Green, who has missed the last three games with a back injury, will be a “game-time” decision Saturday. The Wildcats have missed his poise (and shooting from 3-point range and the free-throw line) at the ends of games. They could really use him against Florida’s loaded backcourt, featuring Chris Chiozza (12.3 ppg, 5.9 apg, 4.2 rpg, 2.1 spg), Jalen Hudson (16.5 ppg), Egor Koulechov (15.1 ppg, 7.1 rpg) and KeVaughn Allen (11.3 ppg) — three of them shooting better than 40 percent from three. All four guards have scored at least 26 points in a game this season.
  • Will Kentucky be motivated by some harsh criticism from ESPN analyst Seth Greenberg this week? He called the 5-star freshmen “spoiled” among other things. And then on Friday, Calipari all but agreed with him — saying Greenberg’s points need to be addressed and sharing that the Cats had an unpleasant film session in which he demanded personal responsibility in the form of, “That’s on me, Coach.”
  • ESPN analyst Jay Bilas, in town for College GameDay, had a lot to say about the young Wildcats (and college basketball in general) on Friday. We have the full Q&A here, and it is well worth your time.
  • Oh, and about the same time Kentucky and Florida tip off, 5-star sensation Zion Williamson will announce his college decision. All the buzz is for home-state Clemson, but there’s still a sliver of hope the Cats can pull a Kevin Knox-type surprise.

The post Kentucky-Florida basketball: Live updates, score, stats appeared first on SEC Country.

South Carolina basketball: What Frank Martin said after the Tennessee game

Published: Saturday, January 20, 2018 @ 4:04 PM

COLUMBIA, S.C. – South Carolina basketball coach Frank Martin met with reporters after the 70-63 loss to No. 21 Tennessee.

Here’s what the Gamecocks coach had to say, after the Gamecocks dropped to 12-7 (3-4 SEC).

Opening

“Unfortunately, we let a great opportunity slipped right through our hands. We were playing with fire with our low shooting percentage, but what got us over the hump was the free-throws and today we missed the free-throws.”

Tennessee clogging the paint

“Tennessee doesn’t let you pass the ball, so that’s why we were trying to spread them out and drive them. We didn’t get much off our guards. Wes [Myers] made some 3s and some layups, but outside of him – Hassani [Gravett] has a clean look at a layup, to put us up two and he shoots an air ball. He just finer-rolled an air ball. … The game came down to, they guarded better than we did. We couldn’t keep Lamonte Turner in front of us. The ball-screen coverage was atrocious.”

On Hassani Gravett

“He’s trying to figure out – I need him to be more consistent with his decision-making. He’s trying to figure out how to trust himself again. That’s hard to do when you’re playing at Georgia, Kentucky and Tennessee. It’s hard to regain confidence against those three opponents in a row. We need him to play well. We need him to figure out a way to have a peace of mind, so he can make better decisions.”

On Chris Silva

“Chris, we got freshman year Chris at practice yesterday. We got freshman year Chris in the game today – completely disconnected in everything we were doing. It’s a shame, because he’s worked real hard. He’s been doing good for us this year and he was not very good defensively and he was worse offensively, and it’s a shame, because he’s a great kid and he’s worked real hard. He battled. He had a hard matchup with Grant Williams.”