College Basketball Insider

Horizon League tournament: Preview, prediction, TV info

Latest in hoops: Top 25 (and one) | Bracketology | Bubble Watch

What: Horizon League championship.

When: March 4-11.

Where: The first-round games will be played at campus sites. The quarterfinals and semifinals will be at the Resch Center in Green Bay, Wisc. The title game will be on the homecourt of the highest-seeded team remaining.

Bracket: View tournament field here.

TV: Semifinals on March 8 on ESPNU. Title game on March 11 on ESPN.

Last year's champ: Valparaiso (26-7, No. 14 seed)

What matters: Green Bay is neither the best offensive team nor the best defensive team in the Horizon, but the Phoenix are the best team, period. They're 24-5 overall, 14-2 in the league and slotted 25 spots higher in the KenPom ratings than any other Horizon school. Combine that with the fact that they only need to win two games on their homecourt to win this event, and it's pretty clear things have setup nicely for Brian Wardle.

Who matters: Keifer Sykes is Green Bay's best player and the top guard in the Horizon. He's averaging 20.4 points, 5.0 assists and 4.4 rebounds. His only competition for Horizon Player of the Year is teammate Alec Brown, who is averaging 15.8 points and 5.8 rebounds.

Fun fact: Though Green Bay's top player is a 5-foot-11 guard, the Phoenix are actually great shot-blockers as a team. They block 18.2 percent of their opponents' shots. That ranks second nationally, behind only St. John's.

Prediction: Green Bay on a neutral court would be a tough out in this event. But Green Bay on its homecourt? Good luck, everybody. The Phoenix are 10-2 at the Resch Center this season. Their only losses were to Wisconsin and Milwaukee.

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