No. 1 Kentucky 89, UNC-Asheville 57
Julius Randle scored 15 of his 23 points in the second half to lead five Kentucky players in double figures and help the host Wildcats’ highly touted freshman class debut successfully. Randle, a 6-foot-9 forward considered the best of Kentucky’s six high school All-American recruits in an eight-man group some are calling the best ever, also grabbed 15 rebounds.
Reserve sophomore forward Alex Poythress added 10 points and 13 rebounds. Reserve Marcus Lee added 17 points, James Young had 11 and Aaron Harrison 10 as Kentucky’s freshmen helped the Wildcats overcome a ragged start.
Kentucky shot 17-of-30 in the second half to finish 28-of-59 (47.5 percent).
Will Weeks’ 19 points led UNC-Asheville, which debuted Nick McDevitt as the Bulldogs’ coach.
No. 2 Michigan State 98, McNeese State 56
Gary Harris scored 15 of his 20 points in the first half and finished with a career-high 10 rebounds, helping host Michigan State build a big lead at halftime and go on to rout McNeese State in a tuneup for the Spartans’ next game against top-ranked Kentucky. Michigan State (1-0) scored 10 consecutive points after trailing 13-12 early in the game and opened the second half with an 11-0 run to take a 63-25 lead.
Ledrick Eackles and Jamaya Burr led the Cowboys (0-1) with 11 points each.
The Spartans kept multiple starters in the game until there were 5 minutes left, when Branden Dawson made a second straight dunk. They will face much tougher competition on Tuesday in Chicago against Kentucky.
No. 4 Duke 111, Davidson 77
Jabari Parker scored 22 points in his debut for host Duke and the Blue Devils routed Davidson. Mississippi State transfer Rodney Hood added 22 points in his first game with the Blue Devils.
The Atlantic Coast Conference favorites shot 70.4 percent — just the sixth time in school history that Duke was better than 70 percent for a game.
No. 5 Kansas 80, Louisiana-Monroe 63
Andrew Wiggins scored 16 points in his highly anticipated debut, leading host Kansas to a sluggish victory in its season opener. Andrew White III and Perry Ellis added 12 points each for the Jayhawks.
No. 6 Arizona 73, Cal Poly 62
Aaron Gordon scored 13 points, grabbed 10 rebounds and blocked four shots in his collegiate debut for host Arizona and the Wildcats opened their season with a win over pesky Cal Poly.
No. 7 Michigan 69, UMass-Lowell 42
Glenn Robinson III scored 15 points and host Michigan pulled away in the second half to beat Division I newcomer UMass-Lowell.
Michigan (1-0) raised its Final Four banner from last season before the game, but the River Hawks (0-1) led by two early in the second half. The Wolverines took control by scoring the game’s next 21 points. Michigan was without star big man Mitch McGary, who missed the game because of a lingering back problem.
No. 8 Syracuse 82, Cornell 60
Trevor Cooney had seven 3-pointers and 27 points, both career highs, and host Syracuse beat pesky Cornell. Syracuse leads the all-time series against Cornell 88-31 and has won 34 in a row. It was the first game between the teams in three years, but the Big Red built a lead that ballooned to as many as 14 in the first half behind sharpshooting Nolan Cressler. Syracuse turned the tables with an 18-5 run early in the second to take control.
No. 8 Oklahoma State 117, MVSU 62
Le’Bryan Nash had 21 points and 10 rebounds to lead five scorers in double figures for host Oklahoma State against Mississippi Valley State. Phil Forte had 22 points, shooting 4-of-7 from 3-point range, and OSU went 12-of-21 from beyond the arc. Markel Brown and Brian Williams scored 14 apiece.
No. 10 Florida 77, North Florida 69
Casey Prather scored a career-high 28 points and Michael Frazier II added 19 to lead host Florida to victory — a much-needed tuneup before playing at 20th-ranked Wisconsin on Tuesday night.
The Osprey, who hit nine of their final 15 3-pointers, made it a seven-point game with 19.2 seconds remaining. But the Gators closed it out from the free-throw line. Florida finished 27-of-32 at the line.
No. 14 VCU 96, Illinois State 58
Juvonte Reddic had 13 points and eight rebounds and host Virginia Commonwealth used a 33-7 first-half run to take command. The Rams, ranked to start the season for the first time in program history, led 9-4 when Reddic started the suspense-ending blitz with a dunk off a feed from Rob Brandenburg.
No. 17 Marquette 63, Southern 56
Davante Gardner scored 25 points to help host Marquette beat Southern. The senior forward, Marquette’s leading returning scorer and the top sixth man in the Big East last season, was 5-of-7 from the field and made 15-of-20 free throws.
No. 18 Connecticut 78, Maryland 77
Shabazz Napier scored 18 points, Niels Giffey had 13 and Connecticut survived Maryland’s second-half surge in New York City. The Huskies nearly blew all of a 17-point lead over the final minutes.
No. 19 Oregon 82, Georgetown 75
Joseph Young had 24 points and five rebounds as Oregon beat Georgetown in a season opener played at a U.S. army base in South Korea.
No. 20 Wisconsin 86, St. John’s 75
Josh Gasser, who missed last season with a knee injury, scored 19 points and Wisconsin opened the season with a victory over St. John’s in Sioux Falls, S.D. The Badgers never trailed and took control with an early 11-2 run and then went 11-of-23 from 3-point range.
No. 21 Notre Dame 74, Miami (Ohio) 62
Jerian Grant scored a career-high 26 points to lead host Notre Dame. The Fighting Irish jumped out to a big lead early, going up 21-6 midway through the first half on a baseline jumper by sophomore forward Zach Auguste. Grant was 5-of-8 from 3-point range.
No. 24 Virginia 61, James Madison 41
Anthony Gill scored 13 points in his Virginia debut and the host Cavaliers held James Madison scoreless for nearly 7 minutes in the first half and coasted to a win.
No. 25 Baylor 72, Colorado 60
Kenny Chery scored 14 points, Cory Jefferson had 13 points and 11 rebounds and Baylor beat cold-shooting Colorado in Dallas.