Happy Wednesday Nova Nation! This past Sunday I sat up in the 200 somethings watching the Villanova vs Seton Hall game. While my daughter sat on my lap and tried to consume a box of popcorn larger than her, I watched Jermaine Samuels catch the ball 15 feet from the basket with no one around him... and pass the ball. A large number of the Nova faithful let out a groan because this was the third time in this game Samuels had passed up an open shot. Why wasn’t he taking these open looks? Wasn’t this the guy that came in cold and nailed three 3-Pointers to beat Temple?
At least, that’s what I assume the rest of the fans there were thinking. I was too busy cheering because Jahvon Quinerly had just made his first basket of the game. It was assisted by Jermaine Samuels. In fact I couldn’t understand the groans at all because those three open looks Samuels passed on were his three assists for the game. And as Joe Juliano points out in his article below, assists were just a piece of the all-around stat line Samuels put together on Sunday.
The sophomore hasn’t fully transitioned to his new position at the five yet. There have still been some defensive lapses, foot work still needs fine tuning, and his scoring has gone down. But his overall game has improved significantly, enough so to earn a starting spot in the rotation over the past four games. Part of that may have to do with Dhamir Cosby-Roundtree playing through an injury, but Samuels has certainly made the most of the opportunity.
While undersized for the position, Jermaine’s athleticism and ability to space the floor gives the Wildcats an advantage on offense and allows them to switch at every position on defense. As I said before he’s still learning the position, but he’s picking it up quickly. Like the rest of this team, I like the improvement he’s shown so far and think that he’ll be even better by Selection Sunday.
Changing subjects briefly before we get to the links, it’s a game day and therefore it’s a poll day:
Which player not named Booth or Paschall will have the most points for the Wildcats?
This poll is closed
In other “news”, updates on Nova alums Malik Allen and Matt Sczcur, Phil Booth joins Andy Katz’s podcast, and it’s very very very very very very cold in Chicago. Enjoy!
Jermaine Samuels may not be scoring, but he’s doing everything else for Villanova | Philly.com
The 6-foot-7 sophomore forward has taken just one shot in each of his last two games but his contributions to the team in the areas of defense, rebounding and setting up his teammates are making his coach happy.
Phil Booth keeps on doing Phil Booth things for Villanova | The Inquirer
The Wildcats have ridden the guard’s hot play to the top of the Big East Conference.
Villanova is OK, but the Big East’s balance could hurt come NCAA Tournament time | The Inquirer
The balance of the conference has not helped the NCAA Tournament resumes of eight teams, all of which have three wins as compared to seven for the Wildcats and Marquette.
AUDIO: Washington's Mike Hopkins, And Villanova Senior Guard Phil Booth | March Madness 365 With Andy Katz podcast
Listen to Washington's Mike Hopkins, And Villanova Senior Guard Phil Booth and 58 other episodes by March Madness 365 With Andy Katz. No signup or install required. Thanks to WildKat for posting this in the comments yesterday!
Villanova at DePaul
No. 14 Villanova must weather the storm -- and DePaul | abc7chicago.com
With the wind-chill factor projected to go as low as minus-60 degrees, local newscasts have declared Wednesday might be the coldest day in many Chicagoans' lives.
DePaul offers free covered parking, Loyola gives away beanies as both play scheduled games in Chicago’s record cold | Chicago Tribune
Northern Illinois moved up its men’s basketball game Tuesday against Ohio by two hours to 5 p.m. and postponed its women’s basketball game against Western Michigan from Wednesday to 6 p.m. Thursday. Loyola and DePaul have home men’s basketball games scheduled for Wednesday.
How Hofstra coach Joe Mihalich led his team to the season's longest winning streak in college basketball | NCAA.com
Hofstra holds the longest winning streak in college basketball this season. Here's what you need to know about this team, its chemistry and Joe Mihalich's unique connection to legendary success.
Villanova alum Malik Allen carving his niche as an assistant coach in the NBA | The Morning Call
Villanova alum Malik Allen had a reputation as a hard worker as a player, and he is carrying the approach as an assistant coach in the NBA.
Get to know the D-backs' 20 non-roster spring training invitees | Arizona Sports
The Arizona Diamondbacks have released a list of non-roster invites to spring training 2019, including some names D-backs fans might recognize. Matt Szczur is one of them.
Class of 2019
Ranney and Roselle Catholic Set to Clash at Brookdale in Shore Challenge | Shore Sports Network
Three McDonald's Americans will be on the floor for Wednesday night's main event at the Shore Challenge, pitting nationally-ranked Ranney vs. Roselle Catholic.
Predicting the field for GEICO High School Nationals | MaxPreps
Six teams appear to be locks as seven battling for remaining two slots.
Rivals Rankings Week: Updated 2019 position rankings | GoAZCats.com
The 2019 positional rankings have all been updated. National analysts Eric Bossi, Corey Evans and Dan McDonald give their impressions of each group and point to various reasons that top players stand out.
March Madness terms: The NCAA tournament dictionary | NCAA.com
Here is our NCAA tournament dictionary, which clearly explains 29 of the most common terms you are likely to hear during the tournament every March.
College basketball teams with the most Quadrant 1 wins | 247 Sports
Quadrant 1 wins have become one of the most-important discussion points for college basketball teams when it comes to Selection Sunday. How tough is your schedule? How do you perform when the heat is on?
2019 NCAA Tournament Bracket: Latest Projection of the Field of 68 | Bleacher Report
Virginia, Tennessee, Duke and Michigan are once again the projected No. 1 seeds for the 2019 NCAA men's basketball tournament, but the bigger news in this week's update is that the ...
College Basketball Bracketology Seed List For Tuesday, January 29, 2019 | Blogging the Bracket
Guess who’s back at the top after Friday’s brief drop into the No. 2 spot...
College Basketball Bracketology 2019: Bubble trouble from coast-to-coast | SBNation.com
While it’s easy to put the top of the bracket together in late January, many teams near the cut line don’t seem interested in making cases for themselves.
Bracketology: NCAA tournament projection as of January 29, 2019 | Inside the Hall
Each year there is a team or two that gets off to a strong start only to take on a number of losses once conference play begins, subsequently forcing everyone to question whether they will still make the NCAA tournament.
Bracketology with Joe Lunardi | ESPN
Joey Brackets has Nova up to a 4 seed.