College Hoops Player of the Day for Saturday, February 23, 2013
With just five days left in the month of February, college hoops is being taken to a new level. Upcoming conference closeout games and tournaments await, with the victors getting the all-important post-season tourney invitations.
The most anticipated game of the day was at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse, as the Orange hosted Georgetown, a game that produced a college record crowd for an on-campus meeting of 35,012.
For the locals, the outcome was disappointing, as Georgetown's Otto Porter Jr. proved nearly unstoppable, scoring a career-high 33 points on the Orange in a 57-46 Hoya win, a victory which will forever stand as a testament to one of college hoops' greatest rivalries, one which is ended as Syracuse departs the Big East for the ACC next season.
In a game in which the winners shot just 35% (SU was held to 34%), Porter was like a blazing supernova, making 12 of 19 shots from the floor, including five of 10 three-pointers and canning all four of his free throws.
When he wasn't killing the home team with relentless scoring, the 6'8" sophomore from Missouri was hitting the boards hard, collecting eight of Georgetown's 34 rebounds. He played all forty minutes, the second time he's done so this season.
The win was Georgetown's ninth straight, and resulted in giving them sole possession of first place in the Big East with a 11-3 mark, as Marquette fell to Villanova, 60-56 and Louisville defeated Seton Hall, 79-61, producing a three-way tie for second place, with the Orange, cardinals and Golden Eagles all at 10-4.
There are still four regular season games left for each of the Big East contenders, so the regular season race is far from concluded.
Elsewhere, the ACC got a little more interesting, as Wake Forest upset Miami, 80-65, the first Hurricane loss in conference play. The 13-1 Hurricanes have four more conference games remaining, three of them at home, against Virginia Tech, Georgia Tech and Clemson, though next Saturday's meeting at 10-3 Duke looms large.