College Hoops Player of the Day for Wednesday, January 2, 2013
Conference play got started in a big way on Wednesday, with eight ranked teams hitting the hardwood.
#1 Duke was still in tune-up mode, playing its final non-conference game, at Davidson, and the Blue Devils came through with a 67-50 victory.
#11 Illinois suffered its second loss of the season (13-2), starting off Big Ten action with a 68-61 loss at Purdue, as the Illini shot just 38% and Purdue's Terone Johnson torched then for a game-high 25 points.
The inevitable occurred in the Carrier Dome at Syracuse, as Jim Boeheim's #7 Orange carried him to win #903, passing Bobby Knight and moving into second place all-time in wins behind Duke's Mike Krzyzewski, with a 78-53 win over Rutgers. The Orange blew open a tight game with a 21-0 run to close out the first half and never looked back.
In game of the night was in Philadelphia, where visiting St. John's batted Villanova to a 83-83 tie in regulation before submitting in the extra period, the Wildcats prevailing by a 98-86 final score.
The Red Storm's sophomore guard, D'Angelo Harrison, pumped in a career-high 36 points on 11-for-21 shooting with six three=pointers. Harrison's heroics fell short, however, as Villanova's Ryan Arcidiacono and JayVaughn Pinkston threw down 32 and 26 points, respectively.
St. John's dropped to 8-5 while the Wildcats improved to a 10-4 mark.