Here are the most extreme things to happen in college basketball between Friday, January 1st and Thursday, January 7th…
2) #246 Youngstown State 100, #73 Oakland 98 [87 possessions] (9%), Monday. As long as Greg Kampe is coaching Oakland, the Grizzlies’ games will be fun. Kampe’s resume is the perfect combo of orange, green, and red year after year. The blend of fast pace, great offense, and lackluster defense that produces this kind of game. The last team in the land alphabetically pulled off the stunner thanks to a 16-for-32 performance from long range. Oakland’s Kay Felder had 23 points, 14 assists, and six turnovers. He played 40 minutes of an 87-possession game so mentally discount those counting numbers a little and give the Penguins some credit for keeping him in check.
1) #344 Liberty 62, #167 Coastal Carolina 61  (6%), Wednesday. Liberty had lost all 13 of its games against a D-I team to this point. The Flames are possibly a bit better than that due to the recent addition of Marquette transfer John Dawson. But still, it was a huge upset to go on the road and beat one of the better teams in the Big South. Liberty didn’t score for the first five minutes, and didn’t lead until there were three minutes left. Dawson hit the game-winning three with 13 seconds left.
Least likely comebacks
Honorable Mention) #350 Grambling State 84, #273 Alabama State 81 (OT)  (1.9%), Monday. Lost in the euphoria of the Kansas/Oklahoma triple-overtime doozy was that Grambling went to 2-0 in the SWAC. Maybe that would have got lost no matter the circumstances, but I feel like that’s an indication that there’s something wrong with the system. Grambling last started 2-0 in conference in 1994. The last time the Tigers went 3-0 was 1987 and they’re not going to do that this season because they play at Southern tomorrow and Southern is a lot better than Grambling. But on Monday night, the Tigers overcame a 17-point deficit with 19 minutes left to force overtime where they picked up their second-straight improbable win, and both have come in overtime. Can you say clutch?
3) #14 Iowa 70, #6 Purdue 63  (1.6%), Saturday. Saturday featured a few wild comebacks but none better than the Hawkeyes playing on the road and turning a 37-18 deficit late in the first half into a seven-point victory. Jarrod Uthoff had 25 points, five blocks, and two steals, and is now third in the kPOY race. We’ll never know how things would have worked out at Wisconsin, but the next time someone questions the character of a player the transfers, maybe we’ll remember that it worked out well for Uthoff.
2) #244 Cal St. Fullerton 79, #233 UC Riverside 73  (0.9%), Thursday. Fullerton trailed by as many as 20 and were still by 19 with 11:28 left. But then Lionheart Leslie made a bucket and eventually an avalanche of points ensued. The Titans scored 29 in the final seven minutes and ended up winning easily.
1) #112 Washington 87, #26 USC 85  (0.7%), Sunday. I think if you work for the Pac-12 Networks you are contractually obligated to claim that this season is the best over the conference. Maybe if you take “Pac-12” literally then that is true, but there’s no doubt that the conference has been better in years past. However, this year’s version is a bit stronger than last season but more notably, the bottom of the league is stronger while the top is a somewhat weaker. Thus, you have a more difficult task forecasting the conference race than just about any league in the land. It didn’t help that one of the weaker teams, Washington, erased a 22-point deficit over the final 12 minutes to knock off USC and move to 2-0. Each of the league’s teams has a projection for between six and 12 conference wins.
My five-man #ShootersClub of Micah Mason, Isaiah Williams, Jared Brownridge, John Simons, and J.C. Hampton is barnstorming the country this season, spreading goodwill and providing inspiration that you, too, can make three-point shots with enough practice.
The Club made 46% of its attempts over the previous three weeks and that kind of run had to end sometime. This past week saw the group go 14 of 50 (28.0%) which was hurt by Micah Mason of all people, who went 0-for-6 against Davidson after returning from an ankle injury that caused him to miss Duquesne’s previous game. It ended a 32-game streak where he made at least one 3. The group fell below the Mendoza line for the season, and currently sits at 38.9% (185-for-476)
Fastest game: #13 North Carolina 106, #40 Florida State 90 [88 possessions], Monday. This was the game where Brice Johnson went for 39 and 23 in a regulation game. It was a special performance that was pace-aided a bit. There were 88 possessions and a gross of shots, or a dozen dozen if you prefer.
Slowest game: #281 Colgate 56, #315 American 37 , Sunday. There was a time, just two years ago, when Mike Brennan took over American from Jeff Jones and led the Eagles to their highest ranking in the history of the ratings. But now, things are different. AU is 2-12 and they play an excruciatingly slow brand of ball. In fact, this game supplanted Cal/Virginia as the slowest of the season. This is not what Leon Tolksdorf signed up for when he transferred from UConn.
Highest-scoring game: #1 Kansas 109, #4 Oklahoma 106  (3OT), Monday. Not sure what can be said about this one that hasn’t already been said. How about some triple-overtime trivia? There have been 106 triple-overtime games in the past 15 seasons, eight of which have been decided by one point. Other famous 3OT games include Oklahoma State beating a Kevin Durant-led Texas team in 2007 by a score of 105-103, an Adam Morrison-led Gonzaga team beating Michigan State 109-106 in Maui in 2005, and a Chris Paul-led Wake Forest team winning at the Dean Dome in December of 2003 by a score of 119-114.
Lowest-scoring game: Mount St. Mary’s 44, St. Francis Brooklyn 40 (OT) , Monday. Monday was a wacky night of college basketball. This is surely the worst game played all season, and I mean that in the best way possible. Neither team could crack 0.7 points per possession in a game that went to overtime tied at 36. St. Francis even grabbed 37% of its missed shots. But that just led to more missed shots. According to ESPN Stats & Info, it was the lowest-scoring overtime game since December 1996.
Coaches Pet Award: The CPA goes to the player that averages the fewest minutes per game while appearing in all of his team’s games. I’m tracking the leader for this exciting new award all season.
We always conclude things here with a CPA update, and for the second consecutive week we are trumpeting the accomplishments of George Washington’s Anthony Swan. The Swan-man played a minute against Fordham and four in a shocking loss at Saint Louis, which means he has appeared in all 15 of GW’s games while averaging just 3.9 minutes per game. That keeps him barely in benchwarmer status on the player table but the irony is that at some point during the game, somebody has to warm the bench for him.