When you're the top seed, these days, the urgency just isn't there.
Xavier, which looked so good throughout the regular season, going 15-1 in the Atlantic 10, was done in by an underachieving Dayton squad Friday afternoon in Atlantic City. The Muskies will be docked a seeding, but overall, you can't be too worried about them.
If any upset didn't feel like it, it was certainly this one. The Flyers blew a 17-point lead in the second half, and had this gone to overtime, it feels as though Xavier would've pulled an Ohio State. Instead, Tu Holloway can't get off a good shot at the end, and the Flyers fly on 68-67.
We're familiar with Dayton. In fact, this group, led by college basketball's other predominant Chris Wright, was supposed to be the best team in the conference this season. Yeah, not so much. But now, with this win, we can open up our minds to the possibility that the Flyers can and will chase down an A-10 title.
Again: conference tournaments are fantastic. A second life and second chance for teams with ability that often far exceeds desire and ambition.
What's interesting about this, from the Xavier perspective: It puts the Musketeers right where they want to be, in a way. Yep, just cruising along under everyone's radar, probably going to get a five seed and be underrated, yet again. But the Sweet 16 is what Xavier calls home.
A thin team that's definitely overshot its ceiling (Chris Mack was incredibly underrated in what he did this year without a handful of scholarship players) now gets a few extra days to rest and strap it on.
The A-10 could benefit here, because if anyone else aside from the Temple/Richmond tandem takes it, that's a bid snatched away from an undeserving bubble team elsewhere.
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