non-DI games
Butler transfer Zoe Jackson and ACU won in dominating fashion Wednesday, handing head coach Julie Goodenough her 200th win at ACU. Courtesy ACU Athletics.

Non-DI Games, Kobe Knox, Rings, 200 Wins, and More WAC Hoops News

Games against non-DI opponents have some advantages and disadvantages. The first is that, unless something crazy happens, more Division I teams will win those games. On Wednesday night, there were seven WAC teams in action. All of those schools were hosting non-DI opponents. And all won by 20-plus points. A couple of those games were 50-point blowouts.

Unfortunately, this is the way of college basketball. Even with the new WAC seeding system, teams still have non-DI games on the schedule. Some of that is due to the fact teams can’t get anyone to play them. And some may be due to the fact that a team wants a home win. It could also be simply that a team wants to increase their winning percentage. Each school has their own reasoning for it.

Here is what doesn’t make sense about it. On Wednesday before games tipped off around the country, Jeff Goodman put out a tweet. And I will admit I absolutely agree with it.

14 teams, including the three WAC teams, played non-Division I opponents on Wednesday night. 14! Like Goodman says, and I have wondered this same thing…why can’t those 14 schools schedule a home-and-home with another Division I opponent? The opportunity is obviously there. Non-DI games do not count one way or the other in terms of NET or KenPom. So they don’t help you and they technically won’t hurt you outside of major embarrassment if you lose.

Scheduling a home-and-home with another Division I opponent is a different story. Those count in terms of NET and KenPom. But, and here is the kicker, you get two Division I games against a quality opponent. There is most likely less money involved because they aren’t buy games. And you give your fans an opportunity to see what you can do against a comparable opponent. It all makes sense. At least logically. Unfortunately, for whatever the reason is, scheduling in college basketball is much more complicated.

And for those that say they couldn’t get a game, Goodman’s tweet is evidence that argument is null and void. There were 14 teams. 14! That played a non-DI opponent on Wednesday. And on Thursday, it’s even worse.

Maybe one day teams will be able to come together to cut down on these games. I know some college basketball people say it’s good to have these games. So we can agree to disagree.

Taking Advantage of Extended Minutes

As stated above, non-DI games have advantages and disadvantages. One advantage is coaches get an opportunity to get some players more minutes. On Wednesday night, Bryce Drew gave redshirt freshman Kobe Knox extended minutes. And Knox took advantage of those minutes.

The brother of Detroit Pistons forward Kevin Knox II had a very efficient 16-plus minutes. Knox was 5-5 from the field, pulled down three rebounds and had two steals in the contest. One of those steals led to a dunk. Knox also had a block on what looked to be an easy layup attempt.

Redhawks Have Rings

Wednesday night was a pretty special night at the Redhawk Center in the Pacific Northwest. Coming off its first-ever WAC regular season title, Seattle U got to have its ring ceremony.

Seattle U finished 23-9 in 2021-22 and 14-4 in WAC play to earn a share of the WAC regular season title. It is the first WAC title in program history. The Redhawks were the two-seed at WAC Vegas but lost, 78-76, to ACU in the semifinals. It had been 64 years since Seattle U had won 23-plus games. But, the Redhawks achieved it under interim head coach Chris Victor who was given the official title near the end of the regular season. And the rings look pretty sweet!

Signing Period is Live

The early signing period of college basketball is live this week. It began on Nov. 9 and will go through Nov. 16. There are a lot of new signees to some of the schools around the WAC. And you can check them out on our NLI Updates page. It is updated anytime a school make the official announcement that the NLI has been received. We have included Sam Houston and New Mexico State on the page. Yes, both are leaving the WAC at the end of the fiscal year. But, at the current time, they are still members of the WAC.

ACU Coach Reaches Milestone

ACU women’s basketball head coach Julie Goodenough has been good enough to reach a major milestone. ACU’s 89-37 win over Howard Payne was Goodenough’s 200th victor as head coach of the Wildcats.

Goodenough is 12 wins away from reaching 500 wins for her career as a head coach. Along with the 200 wins at ACU, Goodenough has 288 wins via stops at Hardin-Simmons, Oklahoma State, and Charleston Southern.

About the author

Kyle McDonald

Love everything about WAC Hoops so decided I wanted to write more about it and cover this amazing conference that just keeps getting better. Follow us on Twitter @wachoopsdigest for information, game analysis and much more.

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