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Morning Coffee: Near Miss for Cleveland State, The Chicken Dance and the Game You Didn't See

We almost heard the groans of another lost season coming out of Rupp Arena. Not that we think that the "40-0" chants were way premature or anything, or that they needed to already correct that. But it would have been nice to have Cleveland State be a reason for it. That and more with your morning coffee.

Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

What everyone will be talking about over their morning coffee:

Cleveland State Just Misses Against Kentucky

For a while, this looked like everything was going to work out great for Cleveland State. And then Anton Grady had what might have been his worst single minute of actual basketball (save when he had debilitating injuries).

Foul, Technical Foul, 5th Foul and out.

Yeah, that was just the spark the Kentucky Wildcats needed to get back into the game, and then just drown out the Vikings.

When Aaron Harrison hit the 3-pointer in the corner with 1:22 left on the clock, the dream had died. There was no coming back from that, no matter how hard Cleveland State tried. Especially not so with the Vikings shooting just 33 percent from behind the arc.

Bryn Forbes went for 22 points in this one, including -- as you would expect -- 11-for-11 from the free throw line.

This was not the Cleveland State team that I expected this season, even with Grady back. They should not be challenging Kentucky. But it is really fun when they do.

Side of bacon:

Christophe Varidel!

We all remember this:



The Chicken Dance man was back in Maui. We so couldn't wait for this.

And then he went off, unlike the Varidel that was a role player for Florida Gulf Coast last season. He could shoot... against Baylor!

Who does that?

Varidel and Chaminade couldn't take out the Bears, losing 93-77. But it was Varidel who was the star against this Baylor team.

He finished with 42 points, just one shy of the Maui record, and the bulk of those came before the half, getting all of the fans on the edge of their seats. They couldn't have expected the home town team to hold the scoring record.

It wasn't to be, but Christophe, we appreciate the effort.

And your enthusiastic dancing.

Other bites:

  • UMKC isn't going to get a lot of play here, but when they lose 110-51 to Iowa State, you have to pay notice. This effort prompted the following tweets:


  • Morgan State bested Marist in a battle of winless 0-6 teams at the Paradise Jam. This ended as you would expect. Neither team made a basket for the final two minutes of regulation, and it took a pair of free throws to send this to overtime. Yes, it took overtime to settle this one. Ultimately Morgan State prevailed 74-67, and Ian Chiles led the way with 25 points, nine rebounds, seven blocks and three assists. That is a pretty good day.
  • Hey, look what Northern Iowa did. If you were ready to write the Panthers off after their slow start, you would be mistaken. They came together to take out La Salle 65-50. Now, that is not a line you see every day. Nate Buss had 23 points and 12 rebounds off the bench, while Seth Tuttle added 15 points and five assists in the loss.
  • Did I mention that Ian Chiles had seven blocks? Seven!
  • And then there is Metro State, who should just give up the charade and turn to D1. We know it isn't easy, but surely this success means something to this squad. The Roadrunners took out another D1 team, this time being Elon who was edged 75-74. This was a Phoenix team that was supposed to win the Southern Conference. And yet they are losing to D2 teams. That is not acceptable.
  • We leave you with the story that you wouldn't have seen because all sane people were asleep when this game started. Not that our man Will is insane, but ...
    Get ready to spit out your coffee: Dayton beat Gonzaga 84-79, after the Zags at one point held a 16-point lead on the Flyers. Yep, so much for that top spot in the MMM Power 15. Personally I have been ranking Dayton all the way through, but I am not even sure how to deal with this one. Gonzaga was good until they weren't. They had foul trouble, they stopped being tough on defense.
    And need I remind you again that no one saw this!
    Except for Will. And the guys at The Slipper Still Fits. So it might be just two people.