Category Archives: Big Sky

4th Annual College Court Report 351-Team Ultimate Bracket

Zach Collins, Nigel Williams-Goss (5), and the Gonzaga Bulldogs are the top seed in our 351 team ultimate bracket.
Zach Collins, Nigel Williams-Goss (5), and the Gonzaga Bulldogs are the top seed in our 351 team ultimate bracket.

Every year, teams see their dreams of making the NCAA Tournament come true, while others accept bids into other post-season tournaments.

Last season, 68 teams made the NCAA Tournament, 32 made the NIT, 16 made the College Basketball Invitational, 32 made the CollegeInsider.Com Tournament, and 8 teams took part in the inaugural Vegas 16 tournament. If the math is correct, that leaves 195 teams without a spot in post-season play.

Some teams aren’t even eligible for post-season play due to off-court issues, whether it’s due to low APR scorers or self-imposed bans.

That’s where we come in. We don’t discriminate, and even teams who aren’t eligible in the real world are welcome in our eyes. Living up to the Canadian stereotype of always being nice, we have included all 351 teams into one hypothetical post-season tournament.

For the fourth year in a row, the College Court Report 351-Team Ultimate Bracket is back to give a look at what it would be like if every single team in the country took part in the same post-season tournament. Continue reading 4th Annual College Court Report 351-Team Ultimate Bracket

RECAP: North Dakota pulls away in second half for 77-61 win at Idaho State

North Dakota forward Drick Bernstine scored a season-high 16 points on Thursday, and was one of four starters to score in double figures for the Fighting Hawks in their 77-61 win over Idaho State.
North Dakota forward Drick Bernstine scored a season-high 16 points on Thursday, and was one of four starters to score in double figures for the Fighting Hawks in their 77-61 win over Idaho State.

POCATELLO, ID. — The 2016-17 season hasn’t been too kind to the Idaho State Bengals, especially after how they fared a season ago.

The arrival of guard Ethan Telfair last year changed the fortunes for the Bengals, and they vaulted up into fourth spot in the Big Sky standings. Entering this year, the Bengals were a trendy pick in the race for the Big Sky crown, but they have been unable to build off the momentum they created last season.

On Thursday night, Idaho State welcomed the North Dakota Fighting Hawks to town. A win over North Dakota would give the Bengals a big boost of momentum heading into the conference in just a couple of weeks.

While the Bengals would hold a slim lead early on, the Fighting Hawks would pull away as the opening half ticked away. After taking a seven-point lead into the break, North Dakota wouldn’t trail in the second half.

Four starters scored in double figures on the night, and North Dakota pulled away in the second half for the 77-61 victory over Idaho State on Thursday night. Continue reading RECAP: North Dakota pulls away in second half for 77-61 win at Idaho State

RECAP: North Dakota routs Idaho for 12th straight conference win at home, 88-65

Carson Shanks came off the bench to record 11 points, 10 rebounds, and 5 blocks as North Dakota rolled to the 88-65 win over Idaho on Saturday. (Source: Russell Hons - North Dakota Men's Basketball)
Carson Shanks came off the bench to record 11 points, 10 rebounds, and 5 blocks as North Dakota rolled to the 88-65 win over Idaho on Saturday. (Source: Russell Hons – North Dakota Men’s Basketball)

GRAND FORKS, N.D. — The Betty Engelstad Sioux Center is one tough place to play. Just ask the rest of the Big Sky Conference.

Coming into Saturday’s tilt with the Idaho Vandals, the North Dakota Fighting Hawks had won 11 straight conference games on their home floor. While they were looking to keep their streak going, they were also looking to remain in second place by themselves in the conference standings.

Fresh off a win over the Eastern Washington Eagles in their last outing, the Fighting Hawks held a one-game lead over the Eagles for second spot in the Big Sky.

Saturday was the only meeting of the year between the Vandals and the Fighting Hawks, and both were looking for another quality win to give themselves some extra momentum as March quickly approaches.

The game was tight for the first five minutes, but the North Dakota started to take over. A 22-5 run opened things up for the Fighting Hawks, who held a 13-point lead after the first half. They quickly extended their lead to 20 points early in the second half, and the Vandals were unable to mount any sort of comeback the rest of the way.

Geno Crandall scored a game-high 22 points in just 22 minutes of action, and North Dakota rolled past Idaho, 88-65. Continue reading RECAP: North Dakota routs Idaho for 12th straight conference win at home, 88-65

RECAP: North Dakota defeats Eastern Washington to move into second place in the Big Sky

Cortez Seales scored 21 points off the bench in North Dakota's 95-86 win over Eastern Washington that moved them into second place in the Big Sky Conference. (Source: Russell Hons - North Dakota Men's Basketball)
Cortez Seales scored 21 points off the bench in North Dakota’s 95-86 win over Eastern Washington that moved them into second place in the Big Sky Conference. (Source: Russell Hons – North Dakota Men’s Basketball)

GRAND FORKS, N.D. — The Big Sky Conference is shaping up to be an exciting race to the finish, and fans got a taste of what can be expected come March on Thursday night in Grand Forks.

Inside ‘The Betty’, the North Dakota Fighting Hawks and Eastern Washington Eagles squared off with the second spot in the conference standings on the line. The winner would move into sole possession of second place, and remain within striking distance of the Weber State Wildcats.

At least on paper, the stars of the show were undoubtedly Jacob Wiley and Quinton Hooker. Wiley, who was the College Court Report Co-Player of the Week for January 16 – 22, and Hooker, who was the CCR Player of the Year last season, were the two most well-known players in the contest.

However, it was a lesser-known guard who would step up in a huge way off the bench to help lead the Fighting Hawks to the win.

Cortez Seales scored a season-high 21 points in 33 minutes off the bench, and North Dakota used a 53-point opening half to roll to the 95-86 win over the Eagles. Continue reading RECAP: North Dakota defeats Eastern Washington to move into second place in the Big Sky

College Court Report Fan-Voted Player of the Week: Victor Sanders, Idaho Vandals

After a 40-point performance this past week, Idaho junior Victor Sanders was selected by the fans as the College Court Report Fan-Voted Player of the Week for Jan. 30 - Feb. 5, 2017. (Source: Mark J. Terrill - Associated Press)
After a 40-point performance this past week, Idaho junior Victor Sanders was selected by the fans as the College Court Report Fan-Voted Player of the Week for Jan. 30 – Feb. 5, 2017. (Source: Mark J. Terrill – Associated Press)

CALGARY, Alb. — Even without the services of Perrion Callandret, who has only played in a pair of games this season, the Idaho Vandals have quietly become one of the top contenders in the Big Sky Conference.

Following this past week’s performances, which saw them win a pair of games on their home floor, the Vandals are in fourth spot in the conference standings at 7-4, and sit 2.5 games behind the conference leading Weber State Wildcats.

The Vandals are arguably the hottest team in the conference right now, having won three straight games, and six of their last seven overall. Five of their six wins have been by double-figures, and Idaho is a perfect 4-0 on their home floor over those seven games.

A big reason for their hot play as of late? The play of Victor Sanders.

The junior out of Portland, OR has been one of the conference’s best players all season long, and he’s having himself quite the career at Idaho. On Saturday, Sanders eclipsed the 1,000-point mark for his career, and he sits at 1,016 points for his career.

After a big week that saw him record at least 31 points in two games this past week, Victor Sanders was selected by the fans as the College Court Report Fan-Voted Player of the Week for the week of January 30 – February 5, 2017!

Continue reading College Court Report Fan-Voted Player of the Week: Victor Sanders, Idaho Vandals

North Dakota Fighting Hawks accept invitation to join The Summit League in 2018-19

North Dakota President Mark Kennedy (left) and Athletics Director Brian Faison (right) celebrate the historic day for the Fighting Hawks with The Summit League Commissioner Tom Douple (middle). (Source: North Dakota Athletics)
North Dakota President Mark Kennedy (left) and Athletics Director Brian Faison (right) celebrate the historic day for the Fighting Hawks with The Summit League Commissioner Tom Douple (middle). (Source: North Dakota Athletics)

GRAND FORKS, N.D. — The slogan read, “New Opportunity. Same North Dakota.” 

On Thursday morning, the North Dakota Fighting Hawks made a big announcement that affected the future of athletics for the better. After being members of the Big Sky Conference, the Fighting Hawks are on the move.

North Dakota will become members of the Summit League at the start of the 2018-19 academic year, and the Missouri Valley Football Conference at the start of the 2020-21 academic year.

University of North Dakota President Mark Kennedy and Athletics Director Brian Faison announced the decision at a press conference on Thursday.

“This is an important move for UND Athletics, and for our fans,” said Kennedy, in a release posted on North Dakota’s website. “We have appreciated our time in the Big Sky Conference and we thank our friends in that conference for their hospitality and the opportunity to have competed against some excellent teams.” Continue reading North Dakota Fighting Hawks accept invitation to join The Summit League in 2018-19