Redskins

Murray State runs past Bethel (Tenn.) 76-54

Murray State runs past Bethel (Tenn.) 76-54

MURRAY, Ky. (AP) According to Ed Daniel, he's just doing his thing.

Daniel had a career-high 23 points and 14 rebounds to lift Murray State to a 76-54 win over Bethel (Tenn.) on Tuesday night.

``I just came out like I do every game,'' Daniel said. ``I'm just trying to go for rebounds and that's really my main focus. I'm feeling good, just keep going hard every day.''

Stacy Wilson contributed 16 points and Isaiah Canaan 15 to Murray State's (6-1) victory in which Daniel recorded his fifth-straight double-double and scored the game's first eight points.

``We just wanted to be more focused on the defensive end,'' Wilson said. ``Once our defense got going, I think that led to transition and everybody was scoring easy. Ed was doing what he was doing in the post and that opened up little things that we worked on in practice.''

Darnell Moore led the scoring for Bethel (11-2) with 14 points.

After getting the ball at the opening tip, Daniel scored the first eight points for the Racers. He started with a jumper 15 seconds into the game, followed by two layups - both on assists by Wilson - before completing the spurt with a dunk.

``We prepared for this team like we do for every game,'' Daniel said. ``No team is different and anybody can be beat any day. We knew they was better than they were last year so we had to come out harder than we did last year.''

Canaan drained a 3-pointer, raising the score to 11-2 before Dexter Fields stole the ball and, with a blind pass behind his back, hit Canaan for a layup. That gave the Racers a 10-point lead five minutes into the game.

Bethel struggled offensively against their first Division I opponent of the season, shooting only 22.2 percent from the floor and 33 percent from the 3-point line in the first half.

Stephen Gillette ended a five-minute scoreless streak for the Wildcats with a jumper at 10:16, answered by a Canaan dunk on an assist by Daniel. Daniels then converted a layup and free throw to push the Racers to a 20-point advantage with 7:02 on the clock.

Murray State head coach, and Basketball Time's Coach of the Year, Steve Prohm stood with arms crossed at the sidelines as Daniel's dunk lifted the Racers to a 31-11 advantage.

``Ed did a terrific job, 9-for-13 from the field,'' Prohm said. ``We didn't make threes 3-for-19, I knew it was bad but didn't realize we were that bad. Half to two-thirds of those were good looks. We went inside early and they did a good job.''

A 3-pointer by Bethel's Josh Swing ended the half with the Wildcats trailing Murray State 39-18.

Coming out of the break, Murray State continued to maintain a comfortable 20-plus-point lead against its NAIA opponent who shot 33.3 percent from the field in the second half.

``There was some sloppy play, some poor decision making today,'' Prohm said. ``We were hoping to be under 10 (turnovers), we've got to do a good job with that. The 13 steals were very good and they weren't gambling steals, they were being good with your hands and making good plays.''

Brandon Garrett, who had six points and three rebounds, garnered his first points of the night for the Racers on a jumper 25 seconds into the second half.

Daniel, whose 11.3 rebound average ranks him first in the Ohio Valley Conference and seventh in the nation, dunked again before Moore's jumper brought the score to 47-22. Daniel followed that up with two free throws. He continued to shine as he sandwiched two layups around a Canaan layup to give the Racers a 29-point lead five minutes into the second half.

Wilson connected on a three to propel the Racers to a 58-28 lead before Garrett dunked on a pass by Canaan before blocking a dunk attempt by Bethel, gaining applause from Prohm.

``Credit our guys,'' Prohm said. ``We're three guys short right now-two short on the perimeter-they're doing a terrific job competing as hard as they can and we've got to just take it a day at a time. Being down a couple guys, every game is a big game.''

The game ended with back-to-back 3-pointers from Bethel's Hunter Culp.

Quick Links

In talking 2018 NFL draft, Doug Williams actually explained Redskins' free agency

usatsi_8167438.jpg
USA TODAY Sports

In talking 2018 NFL draft, Doug Williams actually explained Redskins' free agency

The Redskins spent modestly in 2018 free agency, and plenty of fans thought the team should have shelled out much bigger bucks. Talking with sources around the Ashburn facility, a prevaling notion became clear that the Washington brass believed they had a strong team in 2017, but they lost their chance to compete because of injuries. 

Well, the secret is out. Doug Williams said as much on Tuesday. 

"Coming out of Richmond last year, I liked this football team. I think we’ve got a tough football team, a smart football team. Some things you can’t control," Williams said Tuesday in a pre-draft media session. "We were very competitive up to a certain point, and when you have the injuries that we have, at a certain point, that competitive edge, you lose it because your best players are not playing."

Williams' words were true, and telling. 

First the true part:

  • In Washington's first five games of 2017, the team went 3-2. The Redskins only lost to eventual the Super Bowl champs Philadelphia and AFC West champs Kansas City. Washington only gave up more than 100 yards rushing once in those first five games, before rookie Jonathan Allen got hurt and the defense began to look much different. After Week 5, the Redskins only held one team under 100 yards rushing and finished the year dead last in rush defense.

Now the telling part:

  • The Redskins signed free agent WR Paul Richardson, and kept free agent LB Zach Brown. Beyond that, the team added inexpensive veterans in OLB Pernell McPhee and CB Orlando Scandrick. No splash moves, and recurring speculation that Washington was not offering top dollar to free agents. Bruce Allen acknowledged as much during NFL League Meetings when he explained that his team identified exactly how much they would offer free agents, their own and otherwise, and wouldn't go beyond that dollar figure. 

That means the focus of the offseason, at this point, is about this weekend's NFL Draft.

That also means the focus of the offseason, at this point, is not about Johnathan Hankins or any other free agent. 

"We’re going to deal with the draft now, and the second wave of free agents, if it’s somebody out there we feel like can help the Redskins,that’s what we’re going to do," Williams said. 

Throughout the offseason, Redskins fans wanted more action from their front office. It didn't happen, and Williams' basically explained why on Tuesday. The brass likes their team, and by default, expects better health and luck in 2018. 

When Williams talks about drafting the best player available, it's not just the typical NFL front office tripe. Right or wrong, the Redskins believe they have a team ready to compete in 2018, and any rookies that come in will only supplement that position.

"At the end of the day, I like this football team we’ve got. Like, last year when I walked out of camp, I thought we had a pretty good football team and I still feel the same way today," Williams said.

"At the end of the day, you get the best football player, and if that best football player is the guy that you want to plug and play, that’s all right. But if that’s the best football player that’s going to help your team overall, I think that’s the route you have to go."

<<<CLICK HERE FOR REDSKINS BEST DRAFT PICKS SINCE 2000>>>

Want more Redskins? Click here to follow JP on Facebook and check out @JPFinlayNBCS for live updates via Twitter! Click here for the #RedskinsTalk on Apple Podcastshere for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!

Quick Links

How the Caps won their first round series against the Columbus Blue Jackets

How the Caps won their first round series against the Columbus Blue Jackets

Things did not look good for the Capitals after two games.

Facing a 0-2 series hole after losing both games in Washington, it looked like it could be an early summer. The Caps were going to be the first team to ever lose a series in the playoffs to the Columbus Blue Jackets.

HOW DID THE CAPS WIN THEIR SERIES AGAINST COLUMBUS? FIND OUT HERE

But the Caps rallied.

Washington won the next four games and turned what looked like it would be another postseason disaster into a postseason triumph.

Only once in franchise history had the Caps rallied from a 0-2 deficit and only once had the Caps won four straight games to win a series. They managed both against the Blue Jackets.

Here's how the Caps were able to rally to a first-round victory over Columbus.