1. So, I expected to start today talking about the new website design, but turns out, that’s not the biggest thing happening on the site today. In fact, it’s not an OVC story at all. Barry Hinson’s rant is among the funniest things I’ve ever heard from a basketball head coach in public, with microphones in front of him. The rant overshadows the fact that Murray State played a very good game, got a solid win, and T.J. Sapp had a pretty good start to his career in a Racers uniform. If nothing else, he went 7-7 from the free-throw line. That’s reason enough to be excited given Murray State’s struggles this year at the charity stripe. I still feel Murray gets away from the inside game too quickly at times. In the first half, SIU switched to a 2-3 zone, and Murray’s response was to try to shoot over it. They’re still a young team, but with the west being mired in mediocrity, Murray State is very much a threat to win the division.
2. What has happened to Belmont? They’ve now lost three of four, and their defense has been non-existent in their previous two road games. Sure, they’re still missing PG Reece Chamberlain, but that’s not the cause of the Bruins problems. Turnovers reared their ugly head again, and the Bruins allowed Denver to shoot 55.6% from the field in the loss. Heading into this week, the Bruins were the OVC’s best bet to rise above a 15-seed in the NCAA Tournament. Now? I’m not sure there is one. The OVC’s conference RPI, according to BB State, has fallen to 26th overall.
3. One game on today’s slate: North Carolina A&T at Eastern Kentucky. The Aggies have not been good on the road, struggle to hold on to the basketball, but have some solid three-point shooters on offense. The Colonels were pushed around in their loss at Wisconsin, and have struggled rebounding and defending the paint all season long.