FIU crushed Lynn 68-30 at The Bank Wednesday night. Finda Mansare poured in 20 points, Fanni Hutlassa threw in 17 points, her sixth straight double figure game, and Jerica Coley, a double-figure scorer in every game this season, put in 14. Coley distributed a career-high eight assists.
Three numbers that sum up the game: t22.9, Lynn's shooting percentage from the field; 88.9, FIU's free throw shooting percentage; 7, Lynn's free throws taken. FIU's 4-3 this season.
As the Pac. 12's biggest underachieving program, UCLA, fired its coach with a conference championship game left in another disappointing season, it then turned around to ask the College Sports Cardinals in Indianapolis for special dispensation to they could remain bowl eligible. Hearing the nasal voice of a Beverly Hills housewife pleading with with the soccer coach of her clumsy son: "Let us play in a bowl even if the Oregon Nikes go swooshinng by us for about 600 yards of offense and 50 points. We know we'd be 6-7, but aren't we only playing in Oregon because certain other LA schools in a much worse neighborhood on NCAA sanctions? So our loss to that school that gets talent we can't seem to shouldn't count."
The logic goes something like that. Never known to ignore a hard luck plea on which one of its partners can make a buck, the NCAA granted UCLA's waiver. So the 31-point underdogs can lose by 31 Saturday and still take its Los Angeles media and money to the Kraft Fights Hunger Bowl. This would mean next to nothing if it didn't bump a school with a winning record out of a trip somewhere. Say, a school that doesn't have a long tradition of winning football, doesn't have a big name and doesn't travel well if it involves schlepping north of the Panhandle.
The WAC's sending Louisiana Tech to the Poinsetta Bowl in San Diego. Utah State's taking the WAC spot in Boise at the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. If Beef O'Brady's expects to get a Conference USA team, perhaps C-USA's Armed Forces Bowl slot opposite BYU could be open. Dallas on Dec. 30...could be worse.
Speaking of the preferred landing spot for FIU fans, No. 23 West Virginia (8-3, 4-2 in the Big East) is at South Florida (5-6, 1-5) tonight, 8 p.m., on ESPN. You probably know the situation, but if you're new around here, drawn by the Beef O'Brady's Bowl giving this blog some pub yesterday for using a Charlie the Dog cartoon -- not for the first or last time in my life, thank you, Chuck Jones -- here's the deal: West Virginia wins, South Florida's not bowl eligible, one less Big East team to fill the Big East's slots. If South Florida wins, the Bulls are bowl eligible and you better believe the Beef O'Brady's folks would love them some Bulls.
Here's the drama for FIU fans: West Virginia tends to have trouble with South Florida and have lost the last two times in Tampa. The bookies put the Mountaineers as a 1-point favorite.
Reportedly, Dunwoody High defensive end Chris Hale is now verbally committed to FIU.