Missouri State catches, outlasts Bradley 80-77 in triple overtime.

Grumble…crummy weather; still not well…minor exertion makes me cough and my lower abs are killing me from coughing. I do feel better though…a lot better. Tomorrow: I’ll clear the walk for my workout; it is cold, fluffy stuff and shouldn’t be too taxing though it will make me cough, and my wife is worthless when it comes to helping out.

I’m still glad she is home though. Still, it has gotten to the point whenever I am injured or sick, we have two weak people, not just one. And, she is coughing worse than I am due to the lung irritation she got while on her trip.

Screen shot 2015-02-25 at 9.51.48 PM

I wish that stupid jet stream would do its job. Gads, this is ANOTHER “winter that will never end”. Most of the planet is roasting, and we have that arctic air mass parked right over us.

Now about the basketball game:

Before the game, I posted this on the fan board:

Betting line: Missouri State favored by 3.

Sagarin ratings suggest a 5 point Mo. State win.

Jones expected to start in place of Grier.

MSU got hammered 78-43 by Drake; it was 35-14 at the half. Drake blew open an 11-11 game with 61.9 percent 3 point shooting.

Mo. State beat ISU blue in their last home game.

Prediction: Mo. State 50, BU 48

Yeah, it went 3 overtimes and I watched all of it on the TV.
Mo. State shot 50 percent from the field to take a 32-23 lead at the half; BU’s shooting percentage was abysmal (34.5 percent)

Screen shot 2015-02-25 at 7.54.16 PM

Still; Missouri State, mostly on strong put backs under the basket, did get out to a 20-6 lead and so at 32-23, BU had some momentum going into the half.

In the second half, BU challenged MSU’s guards away from the basket and forced the Bears to take some really awful shots. They weren’t going inside as they did before.

So Bradley crawled back into it and even built a 4 point lead with 5 minutes to go. MSU came back to regain the lead but never lead by more than 2, and a jump shot with 20 seconds tied the game.

So, it ended 50-50; BU had fought all the way back.

First overtime: back and forth; BU’s rebounding kept them in it (star freshman forward had 21 rebounds to go with his 15 points); neither team could lead by more than 3 and it ended tied at 58.

THEN came the second overtime. Bradley OWNED the first 2:26 of the second overtime and took a 65-58 lead; I even said “I think BU is going to win this one.”

I spoke too soon; a 3 point shot (by someone who was struggling to hit them) pull them to within 4. A stop, they get it and score 2 and now it is 65-63. Foul, one of BU’s stronger shooters split the pair to make it 66-63.

They FINALLY nail another 3 (late in the game, MSU shot better) and it is 66-66. But BU draws a foul and goes to the line: 1 of 2 again and now BU leads 67-66 with 57 seconds to go.

Then comes the final sequence of events. MSU with the ball. BRADLEY steal and a foul! BU hits both and now it is 69-66 with 18 seconds to go. Missed 3, rebound BU and a foul! Two shots!!! And….

Two misses.

Still, 14 seconds are left in the game and…they….NAIL a 3. 6 seconds are left and that is how that ends.

Third overtime:

The go out to a 3 point lead on a 3; BU gets fouled on a 3 and makes 2 of 3. So it is 72-71 Bears. Still BU claws back to take their last lead of the night with 2:28 to go on two free throws at 73-72.

it goes back and forth …and at 73-73

Then starts the turn of events; BU guard gets his pocket picked; lay up plus a foul. Now it is 76-73 with 1:53, and BU starts missing shots.

Rebounding (that Bradley freshman forward again) gets a put back and it is 76-75 with 23 seconds.

BU tries to trap; fouls their best free throw shooter who puts it to 78-75…and ANOTHER down the stretch turn over. It is now 80-75 with 15 seconds to go…a miss, rebound and now there is only 1 second left. Mo. State fouls a desperation 3 point attempt and the BU shooter hits 2 and tries to miss the third as there is no time to do anything else…but the miss doesn’t draw iron.

So it ends 80-77, the 3 point spread that the gamblers predicted.

Well, on one hand, I am proud that the team didn’t quit. On the other hand…second overtime…it was BU’s for the taking.

Oh well…that kind of winter around here…

and the white BS continues to come down from the sky.

February 26, 2015 Posted by | basketball, illness, Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

Made it…

I won’t lie: I wondered how teaching would go.

It turns out that I was able to climb the 4 flights of stairs with no difficulty. So I am feeling better (cold log is here) but I do have a cough which is (TMI) very productive at the moment. I’ll have to take something for it prior to going to bed, else I won’t be able to sleep.

There were two positives to come from this cold:

1. This past weekend, I saw 4 of the 5 Missouri Valley basketball games. Of course, 3 of the 4 games I watched were blowouts; the Illinois State vs. Loyola was reasonably competitive (67-60 ISU). But Bradley lost to Northern Iowa by 17, Drake crushed Missouri State 78-43 behind 62 percent 3-point shooting (it was 35-14 at the half!) and WSU cruised past Evansville 62-43; Ironically the Bradley loss was by a lesser margin than the other games. And at least BU was still in the game at the half (down 27-23); WSU lead Evansville 30-14 at the half.

So, had I planned things better, I could have caught the SIU vs. ISU blue and had my own “Arch madness” on the TV. Still, 4 out 5 games isn’t too bad.

I wonder if TV game viewership goes up during cold/flu season.

2. I learned something about teaching from today: today I taught:

Lagrange Multipliers (brief calculus II)
Limits and evaluation of limits along different paths for functions of 2 variables (calculus III)
The separation axioms (T_1, T_2 ), closure and interior in topology.

I didn’t really use notes as I was dead to the world this weekend. But it looks as if I did a competent job even though I was part of the walking dead during the classes.

Reason: I know this stuff. THAT is the take away to teachers: if you want to be able to teach something effectively, you need to know it well beyond the level you are teaching it.

I’ll put it another way: if you need a “teacher’s edition” with the answers in it, you suck and you shouldn’t be teaching the stuff. I’m not opposed to having a solution key to give to the grader or, on occasion, to see what unwarranted assumption the book made (and yes, they sometimes make them…much to my disgust).

February 24, 2015 Posted by | basketball, education, illness | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Live blogging Northern Iowa vs. Bradley in men’s basketball

Northern Iowa: ranked no. 11 in the nation, overall record is 25-2, 14-1 in the Missouri Valley, and ranked no. 23 in the Sagarin ratings with a power rating of 85.65.

Bradley: not doing as well. :-) 3-12 in the conference, 8-20 overall, ranked 260 in the Sagarin ratings with a power rating of 67.2.

The Sagarin model gives 4 points to the home team so this suggests a 22 point UNI win; the point spread opened at 18 and has dropped to 16.

The teams met previously this season: UNI went out to a 22 point lead though Bradley rallied to cut it to 6 prior to losing by 11.

The Bradley fan boards have all but ignored this game.

Opening possession; one missed 3 by UNI, then 1 made 3. 3-0 Panthers. At least BU is being more aggressive; freshman guard/forward Thomas drew contact and hit two free throws.

Barns gets a rebound and gets fouled. More energy from the Braves today.

Oh oh, turnover, layup attempt, but a block by Thomas. Great defense by BU early; lots of hustle. Wells (7 foot center) hits a hook; BU leads 4-3! Tuttle responds for UNI as the shot clock wound down; 5-4 UNI.

Sutherland drives inside; 6-5 BU; right now UNI is 1-5 from 3. First time out.

BU is making UNI take shots from the perimeter. They are open shots but they aren’t falling.

Close up of the UNI fans; they look annoyed.

Barns nails a 3. 9-5 Bradley. BU looking more confident.

Exchange of possessions; jumper by UNI from just past the free throw line. 9-7.

Bad shot by BU but a rebound and put back by Cunningham; 11-7 BU.

BU runs a triangle; no score but some rebounds. But UNI nails a 3; 11-10.

Wells misses a 3 (he can hit that shot); UNI runs and draws contact.

This is a quick game. Almost half of the first half is gone, as is BU’s lead; 12-11 UNI.

Missed 3 by BU, but BU got the tie up on the rebound. Bradley is rebounding very well right now.


But I can say this right now: the Braves are competing.

Buss another 2; 14-11 UNI.

Barns answers with a nice jumper. 14-13. Sutherland with a steal but misses a contested lay-up; bodies all over the floor after the ball.

Good energy from the Braves.

Bell gives BU the lead back. Bradley shooting better too.

UNI a 3 and now it is 17-15.

Penetration and a put back; all tied at 17.

BU with another rebound.

17-17 with 7 minutes to go in the half. This is looking a bit like the Wichita State road game where BU actually lead with 13 minutes to go in the game, only to go on to lose by 20.

6:40; UNI hits a 3 after a rebound; Braves threw it away. 20-17.

Bradley now in a straight zone; Wells forces a travel by Tuttle.

Taylor a strong move; shot in the paint. 20-19. UNI putback. 22-19 UNI.

Steal and lay-up now 24-19. BU can’t rush and panic right now. But UNI misses a 3 and BU rebound again. Bad possession; BU is not a good 3-point shooting team.

Right now, BU is using guards to front Tuttle to deny they ball. Jones with 2; 24-21. Ugh..turnover.

Turnover UNI. BU playing well and flustering UNI.

3 for UNI, 27-21 with 40 seconds to go.

Lob pass to Cunningham; 27-23. UNI comes up empty.

That is how the half ends! Bradley fans have to be happy.

Right now: BU out shooting UNI 43-42 percent and have one more rebound.

Second half
Braves with a zone, fronting Tuttle. Missed 3; another BU rebound. Another UNI turn-over.

Wells with the jumper; nice assist. 27-25 UNI. Another BU rebound on a missed shot. 3 from UNI. 30-25. Wells misses three; UNI running; lay up and a foul. BU can’t afford to rush. 33-25 UNI.

Wow; steal, missed uncontested lay-up and Thomas buries a 3. 33-28. Oh now; lay up 35-28.

This is a critical juncture in the game. In the past, BU has panicked during runs by the other team.

BU misses a 3; UNI makes one 38-28. BU is NOT a 3-point shooting team.


14:08 to go. BU has to stay composed and survive this run.

Wells for 2; 38-30; nice assist. Wells misses a 3 point shot, but Barns draws a foul by getting good position for the rebound.

Still not looking too bad.

Dang it; stolen inbounds pass leads to a foul on a lay up attempt; now it is 40-30 UNI.

Another turn over; BU has to keep their composure. 41-30. Another 3 UNI 44-30.

Another turn over; 46-30 with 8:40 to go. It is getting away.

Oh my another UNI 3; it is 49-30 now it is going the way I feared. UNI has the shooters that Bradley lacks.

Sutherland finally hits a tough 3; 49-33.

Wells forces Tuttle to travel. Still with just over 6 minutes to go and down by 16…too little, too late?

Wells with the steal. But BU has only made 4 field goals in the second half; not enough offense. Another brick.

Now UNI is draining the clock. Steal and a dunk. 51-33. Another turn over. This one is over.

Barns fouled Tuttle hard; frustration is setting in. Lay up. 53-33.

Right now: the only suspense is for those who bet on the game as the final spread was 16. Bell with 2 free throws after an aggressive move to the basket; 53-35.

55-35; UNI substituting. Nice lay up by Cunningham via an assist. UNI clearing the bench as 1:24 is left in the game.

56-39; BU has 16 second half; that won’t get it done. That is how it ends. 29-16 UNI in the second half.

Reality: BU shot 6-23 in the second half (26.1 percent); that just isn’t going to get it done. No Brave was in double digits; 3 players had 6, 3 had 5.

February 21, 2015 Posted by | basketball | | 1 Comment

Women’s BBall: Bradley 66, Loyola 57; Braves complete season sweep.

It was smiles all around AFTER the game.

There were anxious moments early when the Braves started with 6 turnovers in the first 6 minutes; they trailed 14-5. But the offense settled down and the two woman wrecking crew took over and had their way inside: (6′ 1″ sophomore forward; 14 points, 10 rebounds, 6′ 2″ freshman forward, 16 points, 9 rebounds). Bradley lead 31-29 at the break.

The lead extended to 13 before Loyola, coached by 3 time Olympic gold medalist and multiple time WNBA MVP Sheryl Swoopes, rallied to cut the lead to 4 points 51-47. But Bradley’s senior guard provided leadership down the stretch (and 13 points) and Bradley got enough stops to salt the game away. They held Loyola to 35 percent shooting.

It was fun. :-)

Bradley improves to 4-10 in conference action. No, that isn’t a great record…ok, it is a bad one, but BU is now 4-4 over the last 8 games. The team is growing.

February 21, 2015 Posted by | basketball | | Leave a comment

dry air..scratchy throat but???

I have an oh-so-slight tickle in the throat, but this COULD be due to very dry air. I hope.

Workout notes: I was up way too late last night due to the basketball game…more on “too late” later.
But I went in with the idea of getting a reduced workout and I almost got all of it.

Weights: 4 sets of 10 pull-ups, with 2 sets of 5 in between other exercises. Rotator cuff recoveries.
3 sets of 10: machine rows, machine lat pull downs (110 rows, 130 pull downs, wide grip)

rotator cuff (dumbbells) and two rapid sets of 10 x 40 dumbbell military presses, 2 sets of 10 x 135 incline bench presses
shoulders got fatigued due to little rest between sets.
10 x 90 machine military (90 each arm), 10 x 65 dumbbell bench presses.

Then running: 21:05 2 mile treadmill warm up.
5K on the track (25 laps, middle lane) 8:54, 8:52, 8:37 (26:25) 1:05 for 27:30.

Yes, not much sleep, and yes, after lifting. But this was work….though not race effort. Am I coming down with something? Damn throat tickle…but it is cold and dry.

Speaking of last night Yes, I talked about it here.

Let’s just say that we are getting a mixture of sympathy and scorn from Illinois State fans:


The rivalry has really taken a hit with the poor play of Bradley. I kind of feel bad for them in a way. It wasn’t long ago that I would make the trek over to Peoria for an ISU-Bradley game and you could just feel the buzz in downtown Peoria hours before the game started. That was the event of the week. The show.

Last night’s abysmal attendance for ISU-Bradley matchup in Peoria shows just how bad it is in River City.

It wasn’t long ago when these games were extremely intense hard-fought, in the spotlight, and mattered. Here’s hoping for a return of the intensity and anxiety that always was present when we played our rivals from up the road.


My general thoughts as a spectator at the game:
• 8PM games on a weeknight does not bring out the geriatric crowd – finishes past bedtime
• Carver was dead. I am wondering if a few of the Bradley alums/fans “passed away” last game at the arena and Bradley just left them in the seats to look better for the TV game
• This was the worst game atmosphere of the 10 years I have been going.
• I sat by the Bradley student sports casters, I could hear court sneaker squeaks way up there. I have not heard that since the world vision tourney at RA
• Bradley MBB is in dire shape.
• Bradley did not play with any competitive emotion or any competitive fire. This team is downtrodden and beaten. I would say the coach is definitely gone.
• Kaboom was not worth the money spent. He has boats tied to his ankles so that limits his movement. His head looks like a card board box with some carpeting on it…..just terrible.
• I liked QuickChange.


What I did not like from the game:

• The entire Bradley environment did not show up for this, the fans/team/students/AD
• In the end, this game was a huge let down. This was not a rivalry game, it was just a clubbing. BU is a shitbag team, the environment was shitbag, the weather was shitbag, it was a shitbag game, the smell otw to Carver from Bartonville was shitbag, and now I need to change my shitbag because it is full of BU.


February 20, 2015 Posted by | basketball, illness, running, weight training | , , | Leave a comment

Bradley shooting as cold as the weather: Illinois State 60 Bradley 47

It is 4 F right now (temperature) as the jet stream is south of us:


So, perhaps Bradley’s shooting would be better? This was THE rivalry game. The fans weren’t fooled: paid attendance was 7349 (thanks to some Illinois State fans who showed up and made minor amounts of noise.




(lower two photos: upper is via the Bradley twitter feed, lower via Kirk Wessler’s). Arrow points to me.

The local steak house usually has a “2 for 1″ deal if Bradley scores 64. For this game, they lowered it to 54 as, well, Bradley hasn’t scored many points as of late.

No dice.

The numbers: after a ugly first half which saw multiple turn overs and missed shots on both sides, Illinois State lead 28-22. Bradley was lead by their 7 foot center (who didn’t play much in the early part of the season) who had 6 points. He did ok, so long as BU stayed in zone defense. Man to man: ISU has a mobile 6′ 10″ center who was too much.

But it was only a 6 point game at the half.

Then it took Bradley over SIX MINUTES to score in the second half; by then it was 35-23 (one free throw). BU cut it to 40-34 with 6:30 to go in the game and 42-36 with 5:49 to go, but could get no closer the rest of the way. BU managed 23 points in the second half operating mostly against a 2-3 zone defense.

Whereas Illinois State turned it over 10 times and shot 23-52 (5-15 from 3), Bradley was only 16-54 (29.6 percent!) and 4-17 from 3 point range and turned it over 13 times. Bradley got 3 blocked shots (two were spectacular) but Illinois State got 8; their big center had 5 of these (to go with 12 points and 6 rebounds.

This drops BU to 3-12 in conference and 8-20 overall; ISU red is 8-7 in conference, 16-11 overall. I think that ISU has to win out the regular season and win a MVC tournament game to get an NIT bid.

February 19, 2015 Posted by | basketball | , | 1 Comment

Cold day for Pillow Fight on 74 …er…”War on 74″: Bradley vs. Illinois State

Screen shot 2015-02-18 at 5.43.05 AM

There is a dusting of snow outside with more flurries on the way.

That, plus television coverage, plus the 8 pm start (as opposed to 7 pm) plus lukewarm teams might keep the usual large crowds for the Bradley vs. Illinois State basketball game down.

It has gotten to the point where even some ISU fans are feeling sorry for us.

I don’t have a prediction; the Sagarin ratings suggest a 7 point ISU win; the spread is 5 points (ISU) and the Peoria paper is predicting a 10 point ISU win. The BU coach is calling the game a “nice distraction” from all of the turmoil (suspensions, athletic director being forced out resigning, college president being forced out retiring, dwindling crowds, etc.

But the game itself is being called a “nice distraction” by the head coach? Wow.

I’ll scrape off the car windshield and go…why not? It is a basketball game.

February 18, 2015 Posted by | basketball | , | Leave a comment


Workout notes: weights went fine, the run was a mental struggle.

pull ups: 5 sets of 10 (ok), rotator cuff
bench: 10 x 135, 6 x 170, 5 x 170 (rotator cuff)
incline: 10 x 135
military: 3 sets of 10 x 40 dumbbell, standing.
machine stuff: 3 sets of 10 x 110 row
machine stuff: 3 sets of 10 x 130 pull down (wide grip)
machine: 10 x 90 (each arm) military

But I was surprisingly tired and thought my run would be iffy.

Still: it all went well for the first 12 of “start at 5.5, incline 0.5, up by 0.1 mph every 4 minutes” then at 49:33, I was at mile 5 and dialed it back..walked for 30-40 seconds at 5.3 and then got back up to 59:44 (mile 6) and walked .25 cool down miles.

But I was tired when I finished; was it the dinner last night?

During the day: grading marathon, and wondering about an a math problem that is bedeviling me.

Now: watching Wichita play Southern Illinois; lots of empty seats but an entertaining game.

February 18, 2015 Posted by | basketball, mathematics, running, weight training | , | Leave a comment

Grim day for Bradley Basketball: Men: Loyola 58, BU 53, Women: Wichita 66 BU 36

I caught the women’s game (what was left of it anyway) on the drive home from the Carver Center. The women were down 33-15 at the half and were never in it. It ended 66-36. Wichita’s withering defense was too much; they are fighting it out with Drake for the conference lead and BU is trying to stay out of the cellar. The stats were as one sided as the score; BU shot 1-9 from 3 point range, 34 percent overall and turned it over 27 times which lead to 36 points for Wichita. Basically, they are too good for us this year, period. But there are at least two upcoming home games for the women that they should be able to win, and I have my tickets.

But I was at the men’s game. Yes, the “official” (as in “tickets sold’) attendance was reported at 5825 (in an 11,000 seat arena) but I’d eyeball it at…perhaps 3000 in attendance on a cold, but no-snow day?


(via Bradley Basketball’s Twitter feed)

So what would the Braves do at home against a Loyola team that had lost 5 of their previous 7 games (when their star went down with an ankle injury)? Well…I should have remembered that BU’s only two home MVC wins came against the same two teams that Loyola beat.

Initially Bradley’s starting line up (Sutherland, Grier, Wells, Barns and Cunningham) looked sharp as BU got out to a crisp 7-2 lead. But 4 of those 5 starters were to account for all but 10 of Bradley’s 53 points, evenly spread (8, 10, 12, 13 points); when the subs came in the level of play diminished.

It was 32-22 Loyola at the half. The second half: it went back and forth and was 48-41 with 6 minutes left in the game. But BU got some stops and rallied; and was tied at 53 with 44 seconds to go in the game!

I honestly thought that BU was going to get a stop and win. But instead Loyola ran off time and took the lead with 13 seconds to go on a lay-up; it was actually easy.

Then BU tried one of those “run the floor and hope for a lay up” deals which missed; Loyola got the rebound and BU had to fact, twice as BU had a foul to give. They made 1 of 2 free shots to lead with 0.9 seconds to go; BU’s desperation full court pass went out of bounds, and a final lay up by Loyola pushed it to 58-53.

I admit that I was a bit puzzled; visually, our line up LOOKED like our team should be better than theirs but they, while not as large, are a bit deeper. Their bench outscored ours 13-6 and that, IMHO, was the difference in the game.

We have road games against Missouri State (similar team), Northern Iowa (nationally ranked) and the two ISU teams: ISU Red…Illinois State and ISU Blue..Indiana State. I’d say that we are comparable to ONE of the remaining 4 teams on the schedule. Missouri State lost at home 68-57, but were down 42-20 at the half to Northern Iowa.

Oh well, one has to have a sense of humor. Some of the banter on one of the fan boards is funny; some is anguished.

Molinary’s NIT teams (1994-2001) and that Les Sweet 16 (2006) seems like a century ago. Even the CIT team (2013) seems like a distant memory…I can’t even imagine beating Green Bay and Tulane back to back the way that team did. But I was there for those games.

Positives: our freshman star continues to shine (13 points, 7 rebounds, big defensive plays), and someone who rarely got off of the bench for several years in a row started and scored 10 points, got 6 rebounds, 2 blocked shots and had the shot that tied the game at 53. I am happy for these hard working individuals.

February 15, 2015 Posted by | basketball | | Leave a comment

Bradley sweeps Evansville this weekend: Men win 56-53; Women win 56-50


(Note: the above photo isn’t from the Evansville game.)

Ok, this Friday, things didn’t start so hot. Bradley faced Indiana State in women’s basketball and though it was close for a while, ISU blue pulled way to win 65-55. Bradley turned it over 27 times and shot 1-17 from 3 point land; also ISU’s center dominated with 20 points, 8 rebounds and a ton of disrupted plays.

Then this Saturday, the men went to Evansville and started off by trailing 27-10 early in the first half; it was 30-16 at the half. Then during half time, BU’s best player got an asthma attack and couldn’t play in the second half.

So..BU goes to a slow it down offense and a “diamond and 1″ defense (a zone specifically set up to stop EU’s star player) and crawled back in the game..and even took a 46-42 lead. One unusual feature was a 7 foot center who normally plays sparingly; he played 15 minutes and scored 8 points, which included 2 three point shots! Though EU rallied to lead again, BU came back to lead 52-50 with 1 minute to go and then held on for a hard fought 56-53 win; a 40 foot buzzer beater gave Evansville its final points.

Then on Sunday, the women played at home against Evansville. Evansville had the same MVC record as Indiana State going in (5-5) and beat Bradley 86-46 the first time.

This time, Bradley switched to a deliberate, clock draining offense and nursed a 22-16 lead at the half. In the second half, BU used good decision making and solid defense to lead 39-31 and did NOT panic when EU used a 9-0 run to take the lead at 40-39.

During Bradley’s rally, BU got a rare 5 point play off of a made 3 point shot and a 1-1 foul away from the ball.

Lead by their Freshman center, BU outrebounded Evansville 41-32 (she got 12 of those).

It was 52-50 with a minute to go, and good defense and good free throw shooting iced the game. BU was 4-11 for 3 point shots and made 16-18 free shots; that was a huge difference (EU made 12-19; so Evansville had one more free throw but Bradley MADE 4 more than they did.

This one was fun; you could almost watch this team mature before your eyes.

February 8, 2015 Posted by | basketball | | Leave a comment


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