Oregon 58, UCLA 51 (7:09 remaining)

Less than 48 hours after losing on their home floor to USC, Oregon is putting a serious scare into the nationally top-ranked Bruins. Senior G Aaron Brooks has been running the floor with the right mix of poise and invention (which, to be sure, is preferable than running the floor like Aaron Brooks of the Oakland Raiders).

No. 5 Duke were knocked off at home today by Virgina Tech, 69-67 in overtime, the Hoakies being led by 20 points from G Zabian Dowdell. To add insult to injury, a particularly delusional legend-in-his-own mind described the Cameron Crazies as a “ballyhooed group of college students who can’t get laid and as a result jump up and down during an entire game.” Harsh stuff, but who’d know more about not getting laid than someone who invented an imaginary girlfriend?

I’ve been trying my best to concentrate on Ohio State pushing around Illinois, but can’t help marvel at Gren Oden’s dominance on the boards. If this guy’s a college freshman, I’m Bill Russell.

That’s Bill Russell, not Mark.

Georgia Tech will proceed into conference play without the services of G Lewis Clinch, suspended yesterday for the ever-vague “violation of school policy.” Who knew so many people would be offended by a Hitler mustache scrawled on a painting of Bobby Cremins?

While Bobby Knight put further distance between himself and Dean Smith with Texas Tech’s 68-54 win over Oklahoma, let’s consider the words of The General’s One-Man Appreciation Society, ESPN’s Fran Fraschilla, who last month insisted Knight broke the all-time wins record “without a hint of any NCAA violation in his 41-year career.”

There are coaches in the Hall of Fame that I have always suspected did not run clean basketball programs, yet they are celebrated for their great success. That has bothered me because I have always felt that cheating in college basketball is not a victimless crime. More often than not in this business at the highest level, the guy not cheating was likely to have his brains beaten in on the court.

Given that Fraschilla is now toiling as a member of the Fourth Estate, it would be very helpful if he’d reveal precisely which Hall Of Fame cheats he’s talking about. Of course, if the ESPN commentary gig is just a lucrative stop-gap before he eventually rejoins the coaching fraternity, I can understand why he’d want to have it both ways.