The music is blaring in Reed Arena as we're about 45 minutes from tipoff.
Aggie players just went through their free-wheeling dunkfest. Lots of athleticism will face the Sioux tonight.
Texas A&M staff has been extremely helpful since the UND bus arrived around 5:25. A few wondered just how cold it's been in Grand Forks the past few days. The top story on the 5 p.m. newscast out of Houston was the impending Arctic blast expected to arrive Thursday. Temperatures could be 20 degrees or colder. Brrrrr.
Mike Caruso of the Texas A&M staff came to press row to ask how former Sioux coach Dave Gunther is doing. Caruso coached Creighton back in the 1970s and had a few games against the Sioux and Gunther. UND beat Creighton 69-64 at Hyslop back in 1974.
Tonight's game is on Fox Sports Southwest.
Hard to tell how big the crowd will be.
Reed Arena reminds me of a big theater. Interested to see what kind of atmosphere exits here during Big 12 games.
17:15 remaining first half, A&M 10, UND 0
Sioux struggling to get shots in opening minutes. A&M has two steals and crowd-pleasing dunk from Donald Sloan, Aggies top player
15:40 remaining first half, A&M 12, UND 0
Poor start for Sioux. A big problem is perimeter passing. A&M stealing Sioux passes on the perimeter. That's compounded by UND missing the open looks it does get. Sioux are 0-4, A&M 4-7. Sioux already have four turnovers. Travis Mertens had a good scoring chance underneath but missed the layup.
14:11 remaining first half, A&M 14, UND 5
Chris Clausen ends the shutout with a three-pointer from the corner. Dustin Monsebroten follows with a layup off a A&M turnover
13:05 remaining first half, A&M 19, UND 5
Aggies continually making life difficult for Sioux, who are having trouble running their offense due to A&M's quickness on the perimeter
11:54 remaining first half, A&M 20, UND 5
Sioux 2-for-7 from the field with six turnovers. Not a good combination. A&M's advantage in quickness is really evident. Sioux have played 10 players already, looking for any kind of spark. A&M is 7-11 from the field. A&M lead 7-3 on the boards
9:00 remaining first half, A&M 27, UND 13
Clausen picked up his second foul trying to make his way to the basket. Bryan Davis collided with Clausen but Clausen gets the foul. Brian Jones protests but Big 12 officals won't listen to much. After a quick protest, the one officials tells Jones, "That's enough. It wasn't a back door play." A&M already in the double bonus. A scout from the Minnesota Timberwolves is watching tonight.
7:42 remaining first half, A&M 27, UND 13
Sioux still struggling to advance the ball past the perimeter.A&M guard Dash Harris is extremely quick and a defensive menace for the Sioux guards. Sioux now 5-11 from the field, A&M 9-16. Davis just woke up the crowd with a high-flying offensive board. NBA scout certainly had to notice that play. Sioux taking better care of the ball, they're just have difficulty getting shots.
5:14 remaining first half, A&M 31, UND 18
Sioux have a decent two-minute stretch, one that forces A&M coach Mark Turgeon to call time. Spencer Goodman's driving basket and Derek Benter's 3-pointer give UND a little life
3:21 remaining first half, A&M 39, UND 19
After UND's little spurt, B.J. Holmes throws water on the rally with back-to-back 3-pointers. Then, Davis delivers another monster jam on an offensive board. The 6-9, 250-pound senior is fun to watch. He's keeping the crowd interested. Sioux are 7-15, Aggies 13-23. A&M bench is outscoring Sioux 23-5
Halftime: A&M 43, UND 22
Sioux couldn't get a shot off in the last 30 seconds after Davis scored. Perimeter defense is strong by A&M. Sioux really struggling on the perimeter. UND 8-18 from the field, A&M 15-29. A&M outrebounding Sioux 15-11. UND's 13 turnovers has led to 18 A&M points. The story in the first half is A&M's defense and quickness. Derek Benter leads the Sioux with 11 points. No one else has more than 3 points. B.J. Holmes, a backup guard, leads A&M with 12 points. A&M also has 13 second-chance points. Sioux have 13 fouls, A&M 5.
18:00 remaining, A&M 49, UND 22
Another slow start for Sioux. Davis comes up with a steal on the perimeter and slams it on the other end.
17:20 remaining, A&M 53, UND 24
Benter picks up a foul, then a technical foul as it's falling apart for the Sioux. Officials are in no mood to hear anything from the Sioux bench. Heard a lot more chirping from benches during the NCC days. But it doesn't matter. A&M's athleticism is really taking its toll now. Sioux just can't generate much offense.
3:00 remaining, A&M 78, UND 39
Finally, the last media timeout. Hibbert gives the fans still here another reason to make some noise with an athletic dunk off the break. Sioux younger players are getting minutes but are overwhelmed by A&M's athleticism and quickness. The big stat: UND's 25 turnovers, leading to 34 points.
15:12 remaining, A&M 56, UND 24
Sioux have managed only two points in the first four-plus minutes. Those came on free throws. They've managed only two shots since halftime. Four turnovers and two shots for the offense in nearly five minutes.
10:38 remaining, A&M 68, UND 31
We're in blowout territory. It's not like A&M is running it up, either. A lot of Aggies are playing. They're just deep and talented.Pat Mitchell picked up UND's second technical after he was called for a foul on the perimeter. Mitchell was held but pushed the defender and was charged with the foul. Not a pretty sight right now. Tonight's crowd: 7,903. It's half-price ticket night. School is not in session, but the Aggie band is playing.
7:41 remaining, A&M 70, UND 35
The big news the last three minutes: A few fans sitting courtside wound up on the floor after A&M and UND players hustled after a loose ball. Five or six chairs were flipped as Spencer Goodman and Naji Hibbert were two of the players who crashed into the fans. No one was hurt. Sioux shooting OK, just can't get shots as they have 23 turnovers. UND shooting 43 percent and actually own a 25-22 rebounding advantage
Final: A&M 82, UND 41
This is Division I transition basketball. Can only get better.