Saturday, January 18, 2003

Enquirer Tipoff page



WHO'S HOT

Florida

The Gators haven't lost since Dec. 3 and won in a clutch situation last Saturday with a buzzer-beating shot against Georgia. After a 4-2 start, Florida has emerged as the SEC's best team.

Butler

Thad Matta's former school is 13-1 and 3-0 in the Horizon League. The Bulldogs visit Duke on Jan. 30.

UC Irvine

The Anteaters defeated rival Utah State 75-73 Wednesday and got a head start on the Big West regular-season title. No one scores more than 11.7 points for UCI, a true mark of team basketball.

WHO'S NOT

Grace Bible College

Ever hear of a tutor? GBC was forced to cancel its 13 remaining games because it has only three academically eligible players. And with 150 students at the college, it's kind of hard to find walk-ons. The women's team will continue with five players.

Steve Lavin

UCLA's embattled coach has been in the hot seat before, but never like this. He has a knack for turning around the Bruins by tournament time, but their 4-7 start is the worst in Westwood in 15 years.

Mississippi State

After reaching as high as No. 7 in the polls, the Bulldogs, once thought to be the SEC's best team, have started the conference season 0-3. Coach Rick Stansbury says he's not ready to panic. Maybe he should be.

Player of the week

Brian Cook

Illinois' senior has gotten the Illini off to a 2-1 start in Big Ten play and averaged 25.5 points last week in games against Wisconsin and Iowa. Cook has always been a workhorse down low, but this season he's stepping up as Illinois' best offensive weapon.

TOP 5

This week's topic - Rules that need to be better enforced:

Verticality. Offensive players shouldn't be rewarded with a free throw for initiating contact with a defender who's merely standing still with his arms straight up.

Three seconds. Call this more consistently and you won't have to widen the lane.

Palming. Carrying the ball by would-be dribblers is rarely called.

Traveling. The jump stop has been taken advantage of to the point players virtually can hop their way to the basket for a layup.

Coach's box. When was it extended to midcourt?

THE SWEET 16

1. Duke J.J. Redick goes for 34 vs. Virginia.
2. Arizona Kansas awaits a week from today.
3. Pittsburgh Faces test from Syracuse today.
4. Texas Overcomes slow start to beat Baylor.
5. Connecticut Travels to Dean Dome today.
6. Florida Only Duke is hotter than the Gators.
7. Notre Dame Streaking UK up for Irish today.
8. Kansas Jayhawks figuring out how to play without Wayne Simeon.
9. Oklahoma Tough loss in the bedlam series for Sooners.
10. Creighton Kyle Korver might be the best all-around player in the nation.
11. Alabama Big OT win against Mississippi State.
12. Louisville Heading for showdown with UC, Marquette.
13. Illinois Third Iowa upset victim, Illini still getting by on hard work.
14. Missouri JC transfer Ricky Clemons has Tigers back on track.
15. Wake Forest Ends Maryland's 14-game ACC winning streak.
16. Oklahoma State Surprise contender in Big 12 after Oklahoma win.

MUST-SEE TV

Syracuse at Pittsburgh, noon today (ESPN): The Panthers have

established themselves as the team to beat in the Big East.

Notre Dame at Kentucky, 2 p.m.

today (Ch. 12): If the Cats start off slow against Notre Dame, they can forget about a comeback.

Xavier women at George Washington, noon Sunday (FSN): Amy Waugh is scary good from outside. She dropped in 31 points against Duquesne.

Houston at UC women, 3 p.m.

Sunday (ESPN2): The Bearcats try to break attendance record.

Ohio State at Indiana, 7 p.m.

Tuesday (ESPN): Watch the rematch to see if IU can return the favor.

Maryland at North Carolina, 7 p.m. Wednesday (ESPN): Two teams

loaded with talent.




BENGALS
Bar set at lofty heights
Daugherty: Times, they're a-changing
Strength coach Wood retires

NFL PLAYOFFS
Name-calling stirs up AFC opponents
Titans' kicker Nedney a study in perseverance
Williams aching to play Titans
Special teams give Eagles key edge
Keyshawn's stats drop, but Bucs' fortunes rise
Holmgren unlikely to jump to 49ers

COLLEGE FOOTBALL
OSU to celebrate like never before

REDS / BASEBALL
Graves a Red through 2005
Canada Hall nomination pleases Rose
As arbitration looms, Hunter hits jackpot
Latest All-Star gimmick a horrible idea

UC BEARCATS
Barker knows Bearcats need Moore on the floor
Huggins defends UC's grad rates

XAVIER
UMass men's program falls on hard times
Xavier Q&A

COLLEGE BASKETBALL
Enquirer Tipoff page
Five questions with Carmelo Anthony
Catching up with Wally Szczerbiak
Knight milestone tempered by ugly IU divorce
UK's defensive focus on stopping Thomas
Johnson brothers set for Round 3
IU knows this: Win at home or lose the Big Ten
UC women extend home winning streak to 19

NBA
Yao Ming, do yo thing
NBA Today

TENNIS
Agassi holds up against Escude

GOLF
Baddeley shares lead with Goosen

HOCKEY
Habs fire Therrien, tap Julien as coach
Ducks, Cyclones, RedHawks lose on road

PREP SPORTS
Roger Bacon 53, Elder 48
Wyoming 46, No. 2 Madeira 40
NewCath 67, Highlands 42
Ohio boys: Bulldogs hang on against Taft
Ky. Boys: No. 1 Pioneers hold off Cougars
Ky. Girls: Fletcher finishes strong for Rebels
Prep sports schedules

REGIONAL SPOTLIGHT
Louisville officials opposed to arena next to park
Trophy Stakes today at Turfway
Fort Mitchell's Brauninger pleased with U.S. junior men's silver medal

PLAN YOUR DAY
This weekend's sports on TV, radio