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October 1, 2014

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Color blog: Rebels take the hatchet to the Lumberjacks

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Sam Morris / Las Vegas Sun

The UNLV student section holds up cardboard heads during the Rebels season opener against Northern Arizona Monday, Nov. 12, 2012 at the Thomas & Mack. UNLV won 92-54.

UNLV vs. Northern Arizona 2012

UNLV forward Anthony Bennett is defended by Northern Arizona forward Ephraim Ekanem during the Rebels season opener Monday, Nov. 12, 2012 at the Thomas & Mack. UNLV won 92-54. Launch slideshow »

Updated at 8:57: Game over, 92-54, and I swear the giant Don King head is smiling more broadly than he was at tip-off.

Updated at 8:53: Palo Verde High grad Jordyn Martin just hit a layup for NAU. He has 6 points, 4 rebounds.

Updated at 8:49: It's 82-45 with 3:34 to play. Tark is long gone. Off-topic, Cirque du Soleil should check out this UNLV cheerleading squad. Toss 'em onto the Korean Plank and see what happens. They are really good.

Updated at 8:47: Hey Reb now seems to be nipping from a sifter of what looks to be victory cognac.

Updated at 8:46: The lead is now 80-42 with 5:22 left, so secure that Ali Kaba might even see some minutes.

Updated at 8:41: It's 79-42 with 6:30 to play, and Dave Rice still hasn't loosened his tie. Thus, he will never loosen his tie.

Updated at 8:37: Impress your friends with this morsel of obscurata: The Rebel Girls are sponsored by DeCastroverde Law Group. What do they have in common? Briefs! (hashtag-SheckyKats)

Updated at 8:35: The conclusion of this game is so foregone that Hey Reb just ordered up the limo for the post-game party at Haze.

Updated at 8:33: The Rebels entered as a 28-point favorite in most Las Vegas sports books and lead 71-36 now, 35 points, with 9:42 left. This one might be interesting to ride out for the point spread.

Updated at 8:27: Score is 65-36 with 11:53 to go. Here's something you probably didn't know: NAU's athletic program graduates 83 percent of its student-athletes. That's fitting because the men's hoop team is getting schooled tonight. (hashtag-SheckyKats)

Updated at 8:25:Also during the break, I ran into Sandy Peltyn, one of the city's great philanthropists and best-dressed individuals of any type. She has had the same four court-side seats just behind Gucci Row since the Thomas & Mack opened in 1983.

Updated at 8:20: At halftime, I chatted up Tark for a bit. He is not planning on making any games this year. "It's just too tiring for me," he said. He also described his son Danny's loss to Steven Horsford in the District 4 Congressional race as "really tough." Tark isn't going to have to sweat this one out, as UNLV is up 60-30 with 15:19 to go.

Updated at 7:54: UNLV outclassing the Lumberjacks, up 45-23. Outclassing, in terms of athletic superiority, not in terms of style, diction or disposition. Speaking of which, Flavor Flav is here — in big-head form (two) and in actual physical form (one).

Updated at 7:45: A friend once said the best way to gain a music scholarship was to learn to play the tuba at an early age because it is such a unique instrument. There are eight tubas in the UNLV pep band, enough to form a pretty credible tuba showcase in some Strip lounge.

Updated at 7:40: I ran into Jerry Tarkanian earlier, just before he was interviewed by KLAS sport-o Chris Maathius. Tark seemed happy, energetic and was scooting along with the aid of a wheeled walker. The crowd's shark-attack chant to the theme from "Jaws" must have warmed him up.

Updated at 7:35: Justin Hawkins just canned a trey, and that is not a term used in a soup kitchen. Then he committed a pretty short-sighted, open-court foul. Rebels up 29-20 with 5 minutes left in the first half.

Updated at 7:33: Big heads I have recognized from the Rebellion include UFC head (hah) Dana White, the late impressionist Danny Gans.

Updated at 7:24: Whither the naked Prince Harry visage, I ask? I was led to believe the Rebellion, also known as the UNLV student section, would produce a Prince Harry visage. But I have seen no such visage. Someone either puckered, or the school administration, which was not behind the naked visage, told the kids to cool it. Still looking.

Updated at 7:17 p.m.: Las Vegas foodies will chuckle at the name of NAU forward Max Jacobson, who can really take it to the (spice) rack (hashtag-SheckyKats).

•••

The thin layer of smoke from the pregame fireworks show still hangs in the air as UNLV's basketball team has leaped to a 10-2 lead over Northern Arizona in the first 5 minutes. This haze reminds of tales about games played at the old Las Vegas Convention Center, when smoking was allowed in the arena and a cloud slowly dropped to the court during the course of the game. They say there were nights when Reggie Theus' high-rising 'fro nearly met the low-hanging plume.

The vocal group Mo5aic sang the national anthem, and someone along press row asked, "Is that the Village People?" Not quite. But they are billed as being in "V — The Ultimate Variety Show" at Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood, and also on cruise ships.

Timeout at the 14:18 mark, UNLV up 13-5 over the Lumberjacks, whose bark is worse than their bite (hashtag-SheckyKats).

Follow John Katsilometes on Twitter at Twitter.com/JohnnyKats. Also, follow “Kats With the Dish” at Twitter.com/KatsWiththeDish.

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