STORRS, Conn. » Kemba Walker got some help from Connecticut’s freshmen in a fairly easy 78-54 win over Fairleigh Dickinson last night.
Walker scored 21 points to lead the sixth-ranked Huskies (8-0), winners of the Maui Invitational last month, while Jeremy Lamb added 12 and fellow freshmen Roscoe Smith and Shabazz Napier had 10 each. Smith had 10 rebounds and Napier added five assists.
"It’s just good to see that those guys’ confidence is getting higher, and that’s what we need," said Walker, who came in leading the nation in scoring at just over 29 points a game. "When those tough games come around, if I’m not on, I think some of those guys, especially the young guys, will come along."
Lamb said the Husky freshmen live together, hang out together and are developing a real chemistry.
"As time is going on, we’re getting closer and closer and getting better and better and starting to feel more comfortable on the court playing with each other," he said.
Kamil Svrdlik led Fairleigh Dickinson (3-4) with 21 points and Mike Scott added 14.
The Huskies, who beat top-10 teams Michigan State and Kentucky on Maui, have struggled at times against lesser opponents such as Vermont and New Hampshire, but had no trouble with the Knights.
A tomahawk dunk from Lamb just inside the lane turned a 14-point halftime lead into a 48-27 advantage 4 1/2 minutes into the second half.
Smith’s alley-oop dunk from Napier with just under 3 minutes left made it 73-46.
The Huskies outrebounded the Knights 48-38, and held FDU to 33 percent shooting from the field.
The Huskies also took 32 3-point shots, a team record for a regulation game, and made just 10.
"Maybe two of the 32 3s weren’t good 3s," coach Jim Calhoun said. "But, generally speaking, we need to shoot those shots, and all we have to do is make them."
No. 1 Duke 83, Bradley 48
Andre Dawkins scored a career-high 28 points in his first start to help the Blue Devils (9-0) beat the visiting Braves (4-5), moving coach Mike Krzyzewski into sole possession of third place on the all-time wins list.
Dawkins hit eight 3-pointers for Duke in place of star freshman point guard Kyrie Irving, who is out indefinitely with a toe injury on his right foot.
It was Krzyzewski’s 877th victory, moving him out of a tie with Kentucky’s Adolph Rupp and putting him just two behind North Carolina’s Dean Smith for second place.
No. 3 Pittsburgh 70, Delaware State 42
Pittsburgh reserve Dante Taylor scored a career-high 14 points and grabbed 10 rebounds for his first career double-double.
The host Panthers (10-0) have won 10 consecutive games to start the season for the seventh time in the past eight seasons. Pitt has won 45 of its past 46 home games and are 82-1 against nonconference opponents at Petersen Events Center.
Marques Oliver had 11 points for Delaware State (4-4), which had won its last two games.
No. 12 Villanova 65, Penn 53
Senior guard Corey Stokes scored a career-high 34 points, including seven in a key second-half stretch, for the host Wildcats (8-1).
Villanova was held to a season-low point total, but recorded its eighth straight victory over the Quakers (4-4). The outcome was in doubt until Villanova went on a 9-2 run midway through the second half to extend a 40-34 lead to 49-36.
No. 14 San Diego State 77, California 55
Kawhi Leonard scored 22 points and D.J. Gay scored all 14 of his points in the second half to give the visiting Aztecs (9-0) the best start in their 90-year history with a win over the Golden Bears (5-3).
No. 16 Illinois 74, Oakland 63
Demetri McCamey scored 29 points to lead the Illini (9-1) to a sloppy comeback over the Grizzlies (5-4).
Reggie Hamilton led Oakland with 18 points.
No. 17 Kentucky 72, No. 23 Notre Dame 58
Terrence Jones scored 27 points and the Wildcats (6-2) avoided their first losing streak under coach John Calipari with a victory over the Irish (8-1).
Jones made nine of 18 shots — including a huge 3-pointer with just over 2 minutes left — grabbed 17 rebounds and added some late free throws for Kentucky.
No. 18 BYU 86, Vermont 58
Hometown hero Jimmer Fredette scored 26 points to lift the Cougars (9-0) over the Catamounts (6-2) in Glens Falls, N.Y.
Brendan Bald scored 14 points for the Catamounts (6-2), the home team in name only who scored the opening basket but never held another lead.
No. 20 UNLV 75, Boise St. 72
Chace Stanback had 16 points and six rebounds to lead the host Rebels (9-0) over the Broncos (6-2).
UNLV, which opened the game on a 15-0 run, led by 16 points with just over 3 minutes left and hung on for the win.
No. 22 Minnesota 83, Saint Joseph’s 73
Devoe Joseph scored 19 points, including a 3-pointer to start a key second-half stretch, to lead the Gophers (8-1) over the Hawks (3-6).
Blake Hoffarber added 14 points for the Gophers, who were playing their first road game in the United States. Minnesota’s only other games off campus were in the Puerto Rico Tip-Off.
No. 24 Louisville 61, San Francisco 35
Peyton Siva and Terrence Jennings both scored 14 points to lead the host Cardinals (7-0) in a win over the Dons (3-5).