Campus Chatter: Bubble Teams Edition Part 2

Was that one wild college basketball-filled Thursday or what? Not one higher seed advanced in the ACC Tournament and UCLA went down in a big way. The loss for the Bruins may have cost them a #1 seed in the tournament but it also proved what we already knew, the Bruins are in trouble if they draw a team with an inside presence.

Related Chatter:
-I didn’t want to address it but I guess that I have to. The situation going on right now with the LSU Women’s Basketball team is like nothing I have ever seen before. For those of you who are unaware, head coach Pokey Chatman resigned following a report that she had inappropriate sexual contact with a former player. Whether the two had an on-going relationship or not remains to be seen. Homosexuality is really a non-issue here as it is inappropriate for a coach to be sexually active with a player, just as it is with a teacher and a student.

Automatic Bids (Continued):
-Big Sky: Weber State; There is no doubt that Weber State is happy to advance to the Field of 65, but what they may not be happy about is their potential placement in the dreaded “Opening-Round” game, also known as the play-in game. State had a nice year when many did not think they would be capable of making such a run so they more than anyone might just be “happy to be here.”

-NEC: Central Connecticut State University; In front of a raucous home crowd, those other Blue Devils were able to knock off Sacred Heart and win the NEC Tournament. CCSU is looking like a #16 seed so I suggest that they enjoy the ride and savor the moment.

The Field of 65 (Continued):

Big 12
Teams That Are In: Kansas, Texas, Texas A&M
Bubble Teams-
Kansas State: Even though K-State is the higher seed in their game against Texas Tech, they need the win a lot more than Tech does. The Wildcats are very much alive for an at-large bid even with a loss but a win would all but lock things up.

Oklahoma State: Considering Oklahoma State was one of the consensus sleeper picks to make a Final Four run earlier in the season, it is mind-boggling to see them on this list. The Pokes have been unable to win on the road and it could lead to their demise. A deep run in the Big 12 tournament might be their only chance at this point.

Texas Tech: Win today versus Kansas State and the Red Raiders are officially in the big dance. A loss would make things a little interesting but Tech appears to be in nonetheless.

Teams That Are In: Arizona, Oregon, UCLA, USC, Washington State
Bubble Team-
Stanford: Losing to USC certainly was not a good thing for Stanford but it’s also not the end of the world. The Cardinal appear to have done enough to be in at this point but are not quite a lock.

Teams That Are In: Florida, Kentucky, Vanderbilt, Tennessee
Bubble Teams-
Arkansas: The Razorbacks’ dreams are still alive, but barely. A strong showing against South Carolina was certainly a good start but they need to make it to the conference finals if they want to enter the at-large discussion.

Georgia: Win today versus Florida and we can talk, otherwise the Bulldogs look NIT-bound.

Mississippi and Mississippi State: No I did not make a mistake in listing these two teams together. The Rebels and Bulldogs’ profiles are so similar that I would just be repeating myself by writing about them separately. Both teams, like Arkansas, need a trip to the conference title game and even then nothing would be assured.

Other Teams
Teams That Are In: Butler, BYU, Memphis, Nevada, UNLV, Xavier
Bubble Teams-
Air Force: As of yesterday, Air Force was a team that was a lock. An atrocious finish to the regular season coupled with an early tournament loss to Wyoming and suddenly Air Force is on the bubble. Air Force should still get in, but if they do not they would only have themselves to blame.

Akron: Recently a friend of mine asked me if I thought Akron could get in as an at-large. At the time I said “no chance,” but my stance might be changing on the Zips. Akron lacks a quality win to hang their hats on but you can’t deny how well they have played this season. Should Akron stumble in the MAC Finals, their case would be a very interesting one.

Appalachian State: The Mountaineers ran into a red-hot College of Charleston team in their conference tournament and saw their tournament dreams go up in smoke, or did they? Appalachian State has quite an impressive resume and has been even better since getting transfer Donte Minter back. I would not be surprised to see them get in as an at-large, and if they do would be very capable of doing some damage.

Drexel and Old Dominion: I put these two teams together because, one of the two will probably get in, but most likely one will eliminate the other. Drexel has wins at Creighton, at Syracuse and at Villanova and has solid computer numbers. Old Dominion beat up on Drexel in the regular season and also has a win over Georgetown. It’s a shame that both can’t get in but if only one does, look for it to be Old Dominion.

That’s all for today as we embark on one of the greatest sports weekends of the year; find a TV and stay glued to it because the action is only going to heat up!

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