It's that time of year again ladies and gentlemen! What? You don't know? It's time for family get-togethers and early season college basketball tournaments.
So with these very exciting events about tip-off, VAVEL US's own Tyler Bennett and Peyton Wesner have decided to do a special "Sizzling in the Spotlight" for all twenty November tourneys, including the Charleston Classic.
12:00 PM EST
2-0 Ole Miss - 0-2 George Mason (ESPN3)
Ole Miss: 82-72 Win - Georgia Southern
George Mason: 69-60 Loss @ Mercer
Players to Watch:
Stefan Moody (SR)
---25.5 PPG, 6.5 RPG, 3.5 APG, & 1.0 SPG.
Otis Livingston II (FR)
---12.5 PPG & 3.0 APG.
2:00 PM EST
2-0 Oklahoma State - 1-1 Towson (ESPN3)
Oklahoma State: 86-72 Win - Arkansas-Pine Bluff
Towson: 69-61 Win - Morgan State
Players to Watch:
Phil Forte (SR)
William Adala Moto (JR)
---17.5 PPG & 8.5 RPG.
7:00 PM EST
2-0 Long Beach State (FL) - 2-0 Seton Hall (ESPNU)
Long Beach State: 66-65 Win - BYU
Seton Hall: 69-59 Win - Wagner
Players to Watch:
Long Beach State:
Roschon Prince (SO)
---12.5 PPG, 4.5 RPG, & 1.0 SPG.
Isaiah Whitehead (SO)
---18.0 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 5.5 APG, 1.0 SPG, & 1.0 BPG.
9:30 PM EST
1-1 6. Virginia vs 1-1 Bradley (ESPN2)
Virginia: 73-68 Loss @ George Washington
Bradley: 90-60 Loss - 12. Arizona
Players to Watch:
Malcolm Brogdon (SR)
---16.5 PPG, 6.0 RPG, 2.5 APG, & 1.0 SPG.
Dwayne Lautier-Ogunleye (FR)
---12.0 PPG, 5.5 RPG, & 4.0 APG.
This contest is a slight mismatch in terms of the calibre of teams, and Ole Miss very well could run away with this one. Led by Stefan Moody and Sebastian Saiz, the Rebels have talent across the floor that will simply overwhelm the Patriots. George Mason is lacking a star-calibre player this season, and could go winless through the entire Charleston Classic. The Rebels win with relative ease.
---Ole Miss 82, George Mason 67
Phil Forte leads the Cowboys into the Charleston Classic, who are riding a two-game winning streak to open the 2015-16 campaign. The emergence of Jeff Newberry on the boards (10.0 rebounds per game) has been a big boost for the team to this point. Towson will turn to John Davis and William Adala Moto to lead them into action, but Oklahoma State is too powerful for the Tigers to overcome.
---Oklahoma State 85, Towson 73
The most exciting first-round game will be between Seton Hall and Long Beach State. The Pirates, equipped with Isaiah Whitehead and emerging star Angel Delgado, will look to make a statement similar to the one they made last year in the Paradise Jam when they won the event. The 49ers are coming off a big win over BYU, and will look to get a second marquee win in their always tough non-conference slate. In the end, the Pirates’ experience from last season will lead them to a slim victory here.
---Seton Hall 77, Long Beach State 73
For the Virginia Cavaliers, this game could go one of two ways. Coming off their loss to George Washington, they could be out for revenge and roll right over the Bradley Braves. Or, they could dwell on the loss and the basketball world would see another massive upset this season. The prior is likely the case, as the Cavaliers have too much firepower for the Braves to keep up with.
---Virginia 76, Bradley 60
---Ole Miss 80, Oklahoma State 73
---Virginia 70, Seton Hall 62
While there is the potential for an upset or two in the early portion of the tournament, the Rebels and the Cavaliers are the top two teams in this field, and are destined to meet in the finals. Malcolm Brogdon is the go-to guy for Virginia on offense, but they will need someone to step up and become a secondary option. They cannot rely on their defense to keep them in games. Either London Perrantes or Anthony Gill will step up and assume that role in Charleston. The Rebels, who have the easier path to the finals, won’t be able to muster anything consistently on offense against Virginia, leading to a championship for the Cavaliers in the 2015 Charleston Classic.
---Virginia 70, Ole Miss 61
Although Ole Miss has not be overly impressive in their first two games, the Rebels should have no trouble defeating an inferior George Mason squad. The Patriots come in having dropped contests to Colgate and Mercer, two teams Ole Miss would handle with ease. Additionally, two of their top four scorers are freshmen! While the following is a very good thing for a depleted program such as George Mason, it is a disadvantage in a moment as such because of their inexperience. Expect the dynamic duo of Stefan Moody and Sebastian Saiz to have very good games in a double figures win.
---Ole Miss 80, George Mason 65
Is it really possible Oklahoma State will continue to have solid seasons without Marcus Smart and Le'Bryan Nash? Tough question! Unfortunately it will not be answered tonight. As good as William Adala Moto has been to start the season, going up against a better forward in Chris Olivier will cause him to not be able to reach his normal averages. Unfortunately for the Tigers, without Adala Moto's 17 points and 8 rebounds, sharpshooter Phil Forte's Cowboys are going to ride into the sunset with another victory.
---Oklahoma State 72, Towson 60
Seton Hall has "stud sophomores." Long Beach State has "stud sophomores." Everyone has "stud sophomores!" In what has the making of a very exciting quarterfinal, the Pirates and 49ers will take center stage on John Kresse Court. Early Tuesday morning at "The Beach," the 49ers hung on for a very impressive victory over Kyle Collinsworth's BYU Cougars. This evening's contest will not be in California though. Considering the neutral site and the Pirates' high quantity of young talent (Isaiah Whitehead, Desi Rodriguez, Khadeen Carrington, and Angel Delgado), Seton Hall will have too much for Long Beach State.
---Seton Hall 66, Long Beach State 61
This is about to get ugly, really ugly. Surprisingly, the Braves were able to open up the season with a win at home against Ball State prior to being ripped apart in Tuscon by Arizona. Five freshmen currently lead Bradley in scoring, which, like George Mason, will not turn out plesantly against an experienced Cavaliers team. Moreover, no one should expect a team such as Virginia to lose two games in a row to two mid-major programs. Look for guard London Perrantes to score more points tonight than he has all season (11) while Malcolm Brogdon enjoys a grand performance against the new to college Bradley guards.
---Virginia 72, Bradley 50
---Ole Miss 73, Oklahoma State 72
---Virginia 65, Seton Hall 61
ACC versus SEC? Really can't beat it for an early season tournament showdown, right? While both teams will have very challenging semi-finals in order to get to the 2015 Charleston Classic championship, Virginia and Ole Miss will be ready to take home the hardware. When the two face off on Sunday, the matchup will truly be a battle between offense and defense. Explicitely, the Cavaliers will attempt to shutdown scorer Stefan Moody and Sebastian Saiz, who come into this tournament averaging 45.5 points per game! The point mark to watch is 70, because if over Ole Miss will be starting the season 5-0 while if under Virginia has made bounced back perfectly from their loss to GW.
---Virginia 67, Ole Miss 62
Point System for Charleston Classic:
1 pt for each quarterfinal win
2 pts for each semi-final win
4 pts for correctly choosing the champion
1. Bennett 39 pts (37-13)
2. Wesner 38 pts (37-13)