Feast your eyes -- or avert them, depending on your taste in unconventional basketball court designs. With college hoops season right around the corner, we take a look at some of the most unusual basketball floors around the country.
Bright red all over? Check. Super creepy logo? Check. The Governors’ home court is harder on the eyes than the team that plays on it, and that’s saying something: Austin Peay finished 9-23 last season.
It’s bad enough that the Bears seem to be engaged with Oregon in a battle to see whose uniforms are the most fluorescent. But Baylor’s home court, with its two-toned theme and darker wood inside the 3-point lines, is just as outlandish as its uniforms.
Not content to stop with its football field, Boise State rolled out an equally garish design for its basketball court to herald the school’s move to the Mountain West Conference.
Cal State Bakersfield
Where to begin? The mutant roadrunner logo would be distracting enough if the floor at the Icardo Center wasn’t almost entirely deep blue. We’ve found college basketball’s answer to Boise State’s “Smurf Turf.”
A pair of ram’s horns, in a darker shade than the rest of the court, make it look like the center court circle at Moby Arena is wearing the horns. All in all, it’s a design that takes the phrase “Grab life by the horns” a little too seriously.
The school hasn’t made an NCAA Tournament appearance since 1987, so apparently it’s trying to garner attention in another way — with a court design heavy on emphasizing its “Bengals” nickname. Perhaps the most outlandish element is the free throw lanes, which are painted to look like the uniforms of the NFL team with the same name.
Last year the Dukes made their first trip to the NCAA Tournament in nearly two decades. So how did they celebrate? By updating the court to feature two massive “Duke Dog” mascot logos, each with a crown on its head.
Alternating between a deep purple and a lighter violet, the floor at Welsh-Ryan Arena is crazy in an eye-catching good way. It’s almost enough to make Wildcat fans forget that their men’s basketball team remains the only program from a so-called “power conference” that has never made the NCAA Tournament.
Would you expect anything less from an athletics program featuring football uniforms that look like a highlighter factory just exploded? The court at Matthew Knight Arena is framed on all sides by a forest of brown-and-tan fir trees, an homage to the school's 1939 national title team nicknamed "The Tall Firs." But the rest of the floor looks like one of those stuffed bear area rugs.
Memo to the Aggies: The checkerboard parquet doesn’t work. The oversized outline of the state of Texas is a pale imitation of the rival Longhorns’ floor at the Erwin Center. And the ridiculously oversized logo does nothing to help improve the appearance of the floor at Reed Arena.
Pitt slips past Clemson in OT
Lamar Patterson had a career-high 30 points, including a 3-pointer with 3 seconds left, as Pittsburgh overcome a five-point deficit in the final seconds of regulation and beat Clemson 83-78 in overtime Saturday.
Patterson’s 3 with 3 seconds left cut the Tigers’ lead to 67-65.
Robert Morris holds off St. Francis in NEC
Karvel Anderson and Lucky Jones came up big again for top-seeded Robert Morris, with 21 and 18 points, respectively, but clutch free throws by David Appolon preserved a 60-57 victory over sixth-seeded St. Francis in a Northeast Conference semifinal on Saturday.
The Colonials (21-12) advance to Tuesday’s championship for the fifth time in six years, facing fourth-seeded Mount St. Mary’s (15-16).
Danel helping Falcons to Division III tournament
When Chelsea Danel was a senior at North Star, the Cougars were able to win a District 5-AA basketball title.
Now Danel, a senior at Messiah College in Mechanicsburg, is a key contributor on a Falcons’ hoops squad which upset top-seeded Lebanon Valley 53-47 in the Commonwealth Conference championship on Saturday. It was the ninth title for the Falcons in 13 appearances.
Ferndale grad aiding Duquesne women’s hoops
Matt Schmidt was hired as an assistant coach for the Duquesne women’s basketball team in June.
Now the former Ferndale High School standout will have his first opportunity to experience March madness with the Dukes, who are the sixth-seed in the Atlantic 10 Tournament which opened Thursday in Richmond Coliseum in Richmond, Va.
Icecats on way to national tournament
The Pitt-Johnstown hockey team needed to overcome some long odds to advance to the ACHA Men’s Division III national championship tournament in Coral Springs, Fla. next week.
- Local Sports Briefs 3-7-14
St. Francis wins NEC quarterfinal
Ronnie Drinnon hit a go-ahead basket and a pair of free throws in the final 48 seconds, scoring a career high 20 points as sixth-seeded St. Francis battled past third-seeded Bryant 55-54 in the Northeast Conference tournament Wednesday night.
St. Francis hasn’t been in the playoffs since the 2010-11 season and scrapped past Bryant (18-14) in a closely fought contest that saw five ties and five lead changes – three in the final 3:37.
Wake Forest beats Pitt in ACC opener
Dearica Hamby finished with 25 points, 16 rebounds, eight assists and two steals as No. 11 seed Wake Forest women beat 14th-seeded Pittsburgh 72-58 in the first round of the ACC tournament on Wednesday night.
Hamby had a tremendous night in notching her school-record 22nd double-double of the season.
UPJ makes day special for young sports fan
The Pitt-Johnstown baseball team made one of the most important signings in the program’s history on Wednesday at the Sports Center.
Johnstown resident Jill Miller signed a letter of intent on behalf of her 4-year-old son Brandon, who is battling Chiari Malformation, a brain ailment that leads to pain throughout the young boy’s body on a daily basis.
Warren leads N.C. State past Pittsburgh
T.J. Warren scored a career-high 41 points and N.C. State surged past Pittsburgh 74-67 on Monday night.
Warren’s eighth 30-point game of the year gave the Wolfpack’s flagging NCAA tournament hopes a needed boost. N.C. State (18-12, 8-9 ACC) won for just the second time in its last six games, riding Warren for much of the second half.
The ACC’s leading scorer made seven straight shots at one point and finished 16 of 22 from the field. His emphatic dunk in the final seconds sealed it.
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- Pitt slips past Clemson in OT