Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
I’m headed to Madison Square Garden this afternoon for the final of the NIT Season Tip-Off between No. 10 Purdue and No. 11 Oklahoma.
Purdue beat Boston College Wednesday and Oklahoma downed UAB behind 32 points and 15 boards from sophomore big man Blake Griffin.
“There’s no other Blake Griffin,” Purdue guard Keaton Grant said. “There’s only one of them in the United States, get 20 rebounds [per game]. So it’ll definitely be a great challenge playing against them and we look forward to it.”
Griffin has now recorded double-doubles in all five games for the Sooners (5-0). He had career highs of 35 points and 21 rebounds Sunday, when Oklahoma looked sluggish before pulling out an 80-76 victory over Gardner-Webb. He entered the UAB game averaging 26 points, 19.8 rebounds and 2.8 assists.
Against UAB, he had 19 points and 7 rebounds in the second half, when the Sooners stormed back from a 34-29 deficit.
**Over in Newark, No. 4 Pitt meets Texas Tech and Mississippi State takes on Washington State in the Legends Classic. Pitt, as I wrote in this feature, has a slew of guys with Jersey connections, including freshmen guards Travon Woodall and Ashton Gibbs.
Pitt assistant Brandin Knight played at Seton Hall Prep, and the Panthers are also in the mix for Woodall’s former St. Anthony teammate Dominic Cheek, who took his official visit to campus Tuesday-Thursday.
**Finally, here’s a piece I wrote for RivalsHigh about the oldest continuous Thanksgiving Day high school game in America. Boston Latin and Boston English have been playing since 1887.
Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.