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VMI? Howard? Go Crazy

(Photos via AP, courtesy of Howard University Athletics.)

Let's change the subject for one second from local disappointment to local bliss. This was without a doubt the craziest weekend in the three-year history of the Atlantic 11, featuring the 27 Division I men's basketball teams in the DMV.

Look at it this way: five BCS-conference teams lost to non-BCS teams in the first weekend of the season. Two of those upsets came at the hands of Atlantic 11 teams, and not just any Atlantic 11 teams. We're talking two of the absolute dregs of the Week 1 poll.

Howard topples Oregon State at home, and a scattering of fans storm the court. VMI stuns Kentucky in Rupp. VMI! With one lonely Atlantic 11 vote!

And then, both teams turn around and lose to A11 peers, with Howard falling to Navy and VMI coming up short at Virginia. If Towson is better than Navy and Navy is better than Howard, then at least three of our unranked teams could be competitive in the Pac-10, is how I'm interpreting this.

And that wasn't all. Three ranked mid-majors--No. 5 George Mason, No. 7 Old Dominion and No. 10 George Washington--defeated fellow mid-majors, all by one point, all on the road, two in overtime. The Terps blew out a perpetual mid-major favorite in Bucknell. The Hokies survived an upset bid from last year's upset darling of Gardner-Webb. This was, all in all, a remarkable, remarkable weekend.

Let me quote Bison Coach Gil Jackson. "They stormed the court?" he said. "I have never seen that. They stormed the court at Howard."

Well, sort of, anyhow.

Courtesy of Howard University Athletics.

By Dan Steinberg  |  November 17, 2008; 11:29 AM ET
Categories:  Atlantic 11 , College Basketball  
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Highlight of the SportsyNet broadcast of the VMI/UVA game yesterday was Al Koken pointing out Travis & Chavis Holmes' attempt to break the all time NCAA scoring record by twins.

Posted by: TheBaldSpot | November 17, 2008 12:08 PM | Report abuse

Awesome for Howard, moving up in the ol' rankings.

Posted by: ol-brob | November 17, 2008 12:27 PM | Report abuse

In all fairness to Howard, Oregon State is a really, really bad team. The Beavers went winless in the Pac-10 last year. That's why they hired Barack Obama's brother-in-law as coach, so that they could hope for change.

Posted by: MaxWass | November 17, 2008 1:21 PM | Report abuse

How about VCU's victory over The Citadel? Their Russian and TJ Gwynn look much improved. They won easily without Eric Maynor shooting well. A current Major League pitcher was there as well to root on his alma mater:

Posted by: reglsg | November 17, 2008 4:03 PM | Report abuse

C'mon Dan, stop with the "midmajor" crap. GW is not a midmajor and the term is an insult - just because a school doesn't have football and isn't BCS, it shouldn't be called a midmajor. Don't forget your loyal Colonials in Foggy Bottom!

Posted by: mjlaplace | November 17, 2008 6:02 PM | Report abuse

1. Howard pulled an upset win against a Pac-10 team. For the love of black college basketball, don't take that away from us.

2. If that's storming the court, then WPGC regularly makes good on their promise of 18 jams in a row.

Posted by: StetSportsBlog | November 17, 2008 7:40 PM | Report abuse

GW is a midmajor. They have midmajor talent play in a midmajor gym and have a midmajor level of support. You had 2-3 good years. Now you're fading back into obscurity. Get over it.

Posted by: HoyaSinceBirth | November 18, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

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