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Tag:USC
Posted on: March 11, 2011 5:26 pm
Edited on: March 11, 2011 7:38 pm
 

Conference tourney reset: Pac-10 semifinals

Alex StephesonThree games left before the Pac-10 crowns a champion. Three of the top four seeds are left, along with a surprise semifinal participant.

The first semifinal looks a little different right now, as we've learned that USC coach Kevin O'Neill has been suspended for the remainder of the Pac-10 tournament.


No. 4 USC vs. No. 1 Arizona, 9:10 p.m. ET

USC got here by virtue of a 14-point win over Cal. For Arizona, it was a 78-69 win over Oregon State that looks closer than it really was. The Trojans and Wildcats split their season series, so it's no foregone conclusion as to how this one will play out. Playing in L.A. could give USC a bit of a home-crowd advantage, unless UCLA fans show up to boo them mercilessly. The Trojans got a great game from North Carolina transfer Alex Stepheson, who went for 14 points and 16 rebounds in the win over Cal, on a night when Nikola Vucevic had trouble finding his shot. Guards Jio Fontan, Donte Smith and Maurice Jones each contributed double-figure scoring as well, which is a good sign for the Trojans this late in the season. Arizona, of course, is the Derrick Williams show. If he's on like he was against the Beavers (22 points, 5-6 from three), he'll be pretty much unstoppable once again.

No. 7 Oregon vs. No. 3 Washington, 11:40 p.m. ET

This side of the Pac-10 bracket was almost the all-Cinderella side. Oregon actually closed out its surprising win over 2-seed UCLA, while Washington State ran out of gas in spite of 43 from Klay Thompson in the nightcap. Oregon's top player throughout the season has been Joevan Catron, but it was sophomore E.J. Singler who came alive in the upset, scoring 24 points as the Duck defense shut down UCLA's inside production. Thompson's eight made three-pointers would seem to indicate that Venoy Overton's absence is hurting the Washington perimeter defense, but it's unlikely that the Ducks will have the right combination of players to exploit that weakness. Then again, it didn't seem particularly likely that they'd be able to slow UCLA on the inside, either. But here we are.

Photo: US Presswire

Posted by Eric Angevine

More College Basketball coverage
Posted on: March 11, 2011 10:15 am
 

Poppin' Bubbles: Calm before the storm

Posted by Jeff Borzello

Another day of conference tournaments, another day of flux for teams on the bubble. Despite all the bubble action, it was almost like the calm before the storm. Friday is going to be jam-packed with bubble battles, pseudo play-in games, and de facto elimination games. We will have a far better idea of who’s in and who’s out come Saturday morning.

Moving up:

Tennessee: The Volunteers were likely a lock either way, but their win over Arkansas eliminated all doubts. The Vols simply have too many good victories.

Washington: The door is wide open for the Huskies to reach the Pac-10 title game, after beating Washington State and locking up a bid. A semifinal win over Oregon will just improve their confidence.

Colorado: The Buffaloes don’t have a flawless profile, but three wins over Kansas State and six top-50 victories leave them in good shape. A win over Kansas would obviously officially punch their ticket.

Helping themselves:

Boston College: The Eagles dominated Wake Forest for the second time in a week, setting up a quarterfinal game against fellow bubbler Clemson. That's likely a must-win.

Virginia Tech: The Hokies snapped their two-game losing streak by handling Georgia Tech fairly easily, but now they need to beat a Florida State team that could have Chris Singleton back.

Georgia: The Bulldogs did what they had to do, destroying Auburn and advancing to the quarterfinals to face Alabama. They might get in with a loss, but a victory would give them some breathing room.

Michigan State: The Spartans were thisclose to being relegated to the NIT, escaping Iowa with a late run. That would have been the Spartans’ second loss to the Hawkeyes.

USC: The Trojans have a collection of good wins, and they will have a chance to play themselves into the tournament with a semifinal match-up against Arizona. USC defeated California in the quarterfinals.

Penn State: The Nittany Lions still have a long way to go, but beating Indiana was a start. They will face Wisconsin in the quarterfinals – that is a must-win for Penn State, which needs to reach the title game.

Memphis: The Tigers became a little bit more interesting on Thursday, holding off Southern Miss late and advancing to the semifinals. Moreover, top seed UAB was knocked out by East Carolina, opening the door for Memphis to reach the title game.

NIT-bound:

UAB: The Blazers didn’t have a great profile, but their Conference-USA regular-season title was a trump card. Getting knocked out in the quarterfinals of the conference tournament by East Carolina makes them far less attractive. A gaudy RPI only goes so far when there’s no meat to the profile.

Colorado State: The Rams needed to make a run to the title game to give themselves any chance at an at-large bid. They didn’t get out of the quarterfinals, though, losing a hard-fought battle with New Mexico

Washington State: Klay Thompson had 43 points, but that wasn’t enough for the Cougars against Washington. Thompson will have to continue his stellar play in the NIT.

Friday’s bubble games to watch:

Boston College vs. Clemson: A de facto play-in game. Right now, I have Boston College as one of the “last four in” and Clemson one of the “last four out.” Only one will get an NCAA bid.

Florida State vs. Virginia Tech: A must-win for the Hokies, who don’t have the profile depth to withstand another loss. Florida State will get a chance to impress with the return of Chris Singleton.

Illinois vs. Michigan: Big-time bubble game. Illinois is probably in the dance, but Michigan needs to win in order to get a bid. The Fighting Illini are in better position to overcome a loss, but neither team wants to toy with that.

Georgia vs. Alabama: A rematch of last weekend’s Crimson Tide victory. Georgia is in better shape than Alabama right now, but another loss to the Tide would flip the, um, tide. It’s doubtful that both teams get bids.

Michigan State vs. Purdue: Michigan State avoided a bad loss against Iowa to stay in the picture, but a win over the Boilermakers would lock up a bid. The Spartans might get in either way.

Penn State vs. Wisconsin: An absolute must-win for the Nittany Lions, who need to make a run to the conference title game. Most of Penn State’s best wins are at home; a neutral-site one would be a nice addition.

Richmond vs. Rhode Island: The Spiders have done a great job avoiding bad losses, meaning that a berth in the semifinals could be enough for a bid. A loss to URI and Richmond will be sweating.

USC vs. Arizona: The Trojans are playing their best basketball of the season right now, and a win over top-seeded Arizona could be their ticket. A loss will probably send them to the NIT.

Utah State vs. San Jose State: Given the soft bubble, the Aggies might be able to survive a loss in the semifinals. But a win over upstart No. 8 seed SJSU would likely clinch a bid.

Memphis vs. East Carolina: The door opened up for Memphis to make a run to the conference title game, although the Tigers don’t get a third opportunity to knock off UAB. Will one more win get a bid?

Colorado vs. Kansas: Although Colorado is in pretty good shape after beating Kansas State, the Buffaloes can end all doubt and questions with a win over the Jayhawks.

New Mexico vs. BYU: The Lobos are making a late run for a bid, and a title game appearance might not even be enough. With that said, a third win over BYU would be a tremendous trump card over most at-large possibilities.

Washington vs. Oregon: A win here would give Washington an appearance in the Pac-10 title game. Even with a loss, though, I think the Huskies are safe. 

Photo: US Presswire

More College Basketball coverage
Posted on: March 5, 2011 2:28 pm
Edited on: March 6, 2011 12:58 am
 

Bubbles boiling over on Saturday


Posted by Jeff Borzello

FINAL UPDATE: 12:50 A.M.

With so many teams still teetering on the edge of the bubble, this weekend is the last opportunity for dozens of teams to send a message to the committee before the conference tournaments. Fortunately, there are a ton of bubble battles and must-win situations throughout the day. The games might be overshadowed by conference tournaments and top-25 match-ups, but keep it locked here for all your bubble action.

Note: This page will be updated all day, with bubble discussion and analysis.

USC 62, Washington 60: This game threw as much of a wrench into the bubble picture as any game all day. If Washington won, the Huskies would have likely locked up a bid and USC would have been out of the at-large discussion. Now, who knows? The Huskies lost three of their final five games to end the season, going 11-7 in the Pac-10. They have two wins over UCLA and a victory over Arizona, but the non-conference resume is porous. Three sub-100 losses also don't look good. They need to beat Washington State in the quarterfinals on Thursday. USC is squarely in the mix right now. The Trojans still have to make up ground on the teams in front of them, but at least they are in the picture. They won five of six to end the season, own wins over Washington, UCLA and Arizona and have a couple of nice non-conference victories over Texas and Tennessee. This could be an interesting case on Selection Sunday if USC wins two in the Pac-10 tourney.

Texas 60, Baylor 54: Baylor had a shot to play itself in the field at home against a team that seemingly every bubble team has beaten the past few weeks – and the Bears couldn’t get the job done. 7-9 in the Big 12, an RPI in the 70s, three sub-100 losses – should I keep going? A win Saturday night would have given Baylor a legitimate shot, adding to its two wins over Texas A&M. Without the victory, the Bears have an awfully barren profile. Depending on how things play out, Baylor might be auto-bid or bust.

Colorado 67, Nebraska 57: A head-to-head battle between two Big 12 bubble teams just clarified the at-large pecking order within the conference. The Buffaloes were my last team in the field heading into the weekend, and this win should keep them up there. They have five top-50 wins, including two over Kansas State and one over Texas. The three bad losses are an eyesore, but at least they’re .500 in the Big 12 after winning three of four. As for Nebraska, losses in three of its final four games and an awful non-conference profile will do them in.

Utah State 72, Louisiana Tech 30: Well, that wasn’t very nice. The Aggies absolutely destroyed Louisiana Tech, sending a message with the margin of victory. They finished the conference campaign with a 15-1 record, and the RPI has now moved into the top 20. Given the soft bubble, it is going to be very tough turning down a team with those numbers. On the flip side, though, Utah State has just two top-100 wins, with a borderline top-50 victory over Saint Mary’s. I think the Aggies are in good shape, although any loss in the WAC tourney is a bad loss.

San Diego State 66, Colorado State 48: About two weeks ago, Colorado State was 8-4 in the Mountain West and looking good for a bid heading into a difficult stretch. Well, the Rams went 1-4 down the stretch and are now going into the conference tournament needing to win it. They have two top-50 wins, although one is over Southern Miss. Colorado State has a very weak non-conference resume and three sub-100 losses. The Rams went only 1-5 against the top three of the MWC.

UAB 66, East Carolina 48: The Blazers won the outright Conference-USA title with the victory. While the Blazers are not really in great position for a bid (in my opinion), a regular-season title combined with their excellent computer numbers, and they are in the mix. UAB came into the day with an RPI of 28, and has now won seven of eight to the end the season. Now, for the negatives. The best non-conference wins are over Kent State and VCU, and the three top-50 wins – Southern Miss and a sweep of UCF – turn into zero top-50 wins by the morning. The Blazers should play it safe and win the auto bid. 

Butler 76, Cleveland State 68: The Bulldogs knocked off Cleveland State for the third time this season, earning a spot in the Horizon League title game on Monday. They have now won seven in a row, moving to 21-9 overall. Outside of those three wins over the Vikings, though, Butler has just one other top-50 win – on a neutral court against Florida State. When you throw in all the bad losses the Bulldogs have, it might be best for them to just win the automatic bid.

Seton Hall 85, Marquette 72: Big East getting 11 bids? Hold off on that for just a few minutes. The Golden Eagles seemed like a lock after winning at Connecticut last week, but back-to-back losses to Cincinnati and Seton Hall put them squarely on the bubble. Marquette drops to 9-9 in the Big East and 18-13 overall, meaning another loss would be the 14th of the season. The Golden Eagles don’t have any bad losses and own four top-25 wins. They need to win at least on in the Big East tourney.

Oklahoma 64, Oklahoma State 61: Oklahoma State had very slim at-large hopes heading into the weekend, but now the Cowboys are heading into the Big 12 tournament with only the automatic bid as an option. The Cowboys have some good wins, including over Kansas State and Missouri, but 6-10 in the Big 12 simply won’t get it done.

Memphis 66, Tulane 61: The Tigers are still hanging in there, despite a long list of bad losses and negatives on the resume. They technically have six top-50 wins, although that number can quickly drop to two if UCF and Southern Miss fall out of the top 50 at some point. A run to the Conference-USA final is necessary for Memphis to think about getting a bid.

UCLA 58, Washington State 54: Washington State had an outside shot at a bid if it could pull off the upset over UCLA and then make a run in the Pac-10 tourney. With Klay Thompson suspended and Reggie Moore injured, though, the Cougars couldn’t get it done, falling in overtime. They have wins over bubble teams Baylor and Gonzaga, as well as two over Washington, but 9-9 in the Pac-10 and three sub-100 losses don’t look good.

Indiana State 61, Wichita State 54: Without a single top-50 win on the resume, the Shockers had little-to-no shot at hearing their name called on Selection Sunday without the automatic bid. Getting to the title game and being competitive was a necessity; they did neither.

Michigan 70, Michigan State 63: The intrastate battle had big-time bubble implications. With the win, Michigan now owns a season sweep of Michigan State – a significant trump card if the two teams are on the fence come Selection Sunday. Unfortunately for the Wolverines, their only other top-50 win was over Harvard. They still have work to do in the conference tournament. Michigan State dropped to 9-9 in the Big Ten, joining a logjam of potentially four teams. The Spartans have better wins than Michigan, with victories over Wisconsin, Washington and Illinois. A loss in the league tournament would be their 14th of the season, tough.

Alabama 65, Georgia 57: Alabama kept its at-large hopes alive with an impressive home win, bringing its SEC record to 12-4. If Florida loses at Vanderbilt this weekend, the Crimson Tide will earn a split of the SEC title. The Tide already had solid wins over Kentucky and Tennessee, but their non-conference resume is horrendous and they have a slew of bad losses. They might need to win their first SEC tourney game. Georgia would have clinched a bid with the road win, but the Bulldogs are still in decent shape. They have a solid computer profile and zero bad losses. They need to avoid bad losses in the SEC Tournament.

Missouri State 60, Creighton 50: The Bears needed to come back again in the Missouri Valley tournament, overcoming a halftime deficit. It remains to be seen whether they even have an at-large shot, but the best way to end the questions would be to win the title game on Sunday.

VCU 62, Drexel 60: It might be time to dust off the VCU profile after Jamie Skeen’s buzzer shot sent the Rams to the semifinals. Quality wins over UCLA and Old Dominion are more than some bubble teams can claim. A litany of bad losses and a 12-6 CAA record brings the profile down.

Clemson 69, Virginia Tech 60: A huge bubble match-up in the ACC could result in neither team making the NCAA Tournament. Virginia Tech went down 24-9 in the first half and was never able to recover. With this and the blowout home loss to Boston College during the week, all the good will the Hokies picked up with their win over Duke has disappeared. As for Clemson, the Tigers join Tech at 9-7 in the ACC. However, Clemson’s two best wins are over Boston College and Florida State – not exactly marquee victories. Both teams might need two wins in the league tournament. 

Richmond 68, Duquesne 56: Richmond continues to do what it has to do in order to get a bid on Selection Sunday. The Spiders ended the first half on a run and then coasted for most of the second half. They finished 13-3 in the Atlantic-10, winning their last four games, and 11 of their last 13. Richmond doesn’t have many marquee wins, but it does own a neutral-court victory over Purdue. Avoiding a bad loss in the conference tournament is a necessity.

Illinois 72, Indiana 48: The Fighting Illini certainly took care of business on Saturday, jumping out to a big lead early to avenge an earlier loss to the Hoosiers. Of course, the victory doesn’t do much to enhance the profile, other than the fact it gets them to 9-9 in the Big Ten. With wins over North Carolina and Wisconsin, as well as victories over fellow bubble teams Gonzaga, Michigan State and Michigan, Illinois should be in good shape.

Others: Maryland ended its season on a sour note, losing at home to Virginia by 14; Dayton finished 7-9 in the Atlantic-10, completing a disappointing regular season. 

Photo: US Presswire

More College Basketball coverage
Posted on: February 28, 2011 3:37 pm
 

BracketBusters? How about Bubble Bursters?

Posted by Jeff Borzello

The last week of the regular season means bubble teams are running out of changes to impress the committee. Some teams took advantage of that desperation this past weekend, with Virginia Tech defeating Duke and Colorado beating Texas. Others, like Washington, Colorado State or Alabama, decided it would be the perfect time to add a bad loss to the resume. This season, there are still plenty of bids up for grabs – and no one seems to be dead in the at-large hunt. Coincidentally, several of the top bubble contenders play each other this week - it's like a bubble version of BracketBusters weekend. Which are the biggest bubble battles this week?

Boston College at Virginia Tech (Tuesday): After Virginia Tech’s win over Duke on Saturday, the Hokies took the lead in the race for a fourth bid from the ACC. Boston College overcame a first-half deficit to pick up a must-win game at Virginia. The Eagles have better computer numbers than the Hokies, as well as a head-to-head victory over Tech. But Tech has a two-game lead in the ACC standings, and is playing far better lately. A win here could lock things up for the Hokies.

Cincinnati at Marquette (Wednesday): Both of these teams are still in good shape heading into the week, after each picked up a monster road win last week. Cincinnati went on the road and defeated Georgetown, although it lost to Connecticut at home on Sunday. Marquette knocked off UConn, and then blew out Providence to keep the momentum rolling. Both teams have four top-50 wins, although the Golden Eagles have better computer numbers.

Michigan State at Michigan (Saturday): Back in November, would anyone have thought this intrastate battle could decide the Selection Sunday fates of both teams? After getting big wins over Illinois and at Minnesota, Michigan State lost by 20 at home to Purdue. The Spartans have a home contest with Iowa on Wednesday before heading to Ann Arbor. The Wolverines, on the other hand, have a week to prepare. They bounced back from a heart-breaking loss to Wisconsin by winning at Minnesota over the weekend. If Michigan wins, it would have a sweep of Michigan State.

Georgia at Alabama (Saturday): Alabama would have been in good shape had it defeated Ole Miss over the weekend – would the committee really turn down a 13-3 SEC co-champion? With the loss, though, the Crimson Tide are in trouble. They now have to head to Florida before hosting Georgia in a bubblicious match-up. The poor computer numbers and lack of good wins mean a split might not even be enough. Georgia, on the other hand, is buoyed by its solid computer profile. The Bulldogs need to beat LSU at home and then at least one in the SEC Tournament if they can’t beat Alabama.

USC at Washington (Saturday): Before last week, this game would not have been included. Since then, USC has entered the discussion with four straight wins. The Trojans have four top-40 wins and are 9-7 in the Pac-10. Washington dropped back into the pack with a blowout home loss to Washington State, killing any shot it had at a Pac-10 title. Moreover, with a fairly barren overall profile, the Huskies should start sweating.

Virginia Tech at Clemson (Saturday): This is only a must-see if Clemson wins at Duke during the week. If the Tigers fall short, they simply won’t have the profile to garner consideration for a bid. Wins over Florida State and Boston College merely balance out two sub-100 losses. They need a sweep of the Blue Devils and the Hokies.

Penn State at Minnesota (Sunday): Both teams are on the outside looking in at this point, with Penn State trending upwards and Minnesota going in the wrong direction. The Nittany Lions have won three of four, including one over Minnesota, to put themselves in the mix. They face Ohio State on Tuesday, which is likely a must-win if it wants serious consideration. Minnesota, losers of six of seven, need to beat Northwestern and Penn State and then do serious work in the conference tournament.  

Photo: US Presswire

Posted on: February 25, 2011 7:02 am
 

The Morning Drive: Centenary breaks through

Posted by Jeff Borzello

There were no 52-point performances or buzzer-beaters in bubble games, but Thursday had some highlights. Three teams clinched regular-season titles, while another one clinched at least a share of the league championship. Bubble teams won, bubble teams lost. There were upsets and close finishes. What more can you ask for? Reach me on Twitter: @jeffborzello

Standing Ovation: Centenary went into last night with an 0-28 record, losers of 33 straight games. The Gentlemen would have been the first 0-30 team in college basketball. Somehow, though, they shot 62.5 percent from the field and defeated Western Illinois, 73-60. Maxx Nakwaasah scored 24 points to lead Centenary, who will be dropping to Division-III next season.

Top Performer: Arizona had a chance to give itself some breathing room atop the Pac-10 heading into the weekend, but Nikola Vucevic had other ideas. The USC big man had 25 points and 12 rebounds to lead the Trojans to a 65-57 win at home. He was 9-for-17 from the field, as well as 7-for-7 from the free-throw line. Defensively, he helped hold All-American Derrick Williams to just eight points.

Round of Applause: Four teams clinched NIT automatic bids last night, although I’m sure they will be more excited if they win the conference tournament. It started with Florida Atlantic defeating Troy to clinch the Sun Belt; then George Mason had a closer-than-expected win over Northeastern to win the Colonial; and Long Beach State followed that up with a win over Cal Poly to win the Big West. In the Big South, Coastal Carolina clinched the title with Liberty losing at Winthrop.

Stepping Up: Gonzaga was left for dead a few weeks ago, but it is now one game from getting a share of the WCC title after going on the road and beating Saint Mary’s in overtime. Expect the loser of the WCC Tournament to be right on the cut line come Selection Sunday. Last night, Sam Dower came through for the Bulldogs, hitting his first seven field-goal attempts and finishing with 21 points.

Stat-Sheet Stuffer: Charleston was another team that didn’t capitalize on its opportunity to clinch a regular-season title on Thursday. Appalachian State’s Donald Sims had a say in that. Sims put up 32 points on six 3-pointers, also grabbing five rebounds and dishing out six assists. The Mountaineers knocked off Charleston, 85-70.

Yawn: Just like Jimmer Fredette putting up another 30-point performance, it’s become expected that Oakland’s Keith Benson will put up gaudy scoring and rebounding stats. He did just that against UMKC last night, finishing with 26 points and 14 rebounds, also adding three blocks on the defensive end.

Dishing it out: Montana took one step closer to a Big Sky title last night, going on the road and beating Portland State by one, 85-84. Will Cherry led the way for the Grizzlies, scoring 24 points and racking up 10 assists (with only one turnover). He knocked down two 3-pointers and also grabbed three rebounds. More importantly, Cherry iced the game from the free-throw line in the final seconds.

In a Losing Effort: It wasn’t a losing effort, but I have no clue what Washington Adventist is, so I’m counting Longwood’s win as a de facto loss. With that said, center Antwan Carter put up some huge digits. The Longwood big man went 14-for-20 from the field en route to a 33-point, 20-rebound night. Five of his boards were on the offensive glass, and he was 5-for-7 from the free-throw line.

Filling it up: Normally when a player who has scored in double-figures just 10 times all season explodes for 34 points, it’s because he got hot from 3-point land. Fairleigh Dickinson’s Terence Grier dropped 34 in a win at Sacred Heart, snapping the Knights’ 11-game losing streak. Grier hit four 3-pointers and two free-throws – the other 10 field-goals came from inside the arc. Not bad for a 6-foot guard.

Dub-Dubbing: In a battle for second-place in the Summit, Oral Roberts completely dominated IUPUI, getting a 92-74 win. It was the Golden Eagles’ seventh straight win heading into the finale. The leader for ORU was Steven Roundtree, who was 10-for-12 from the field and 7-for-8 from the free-throw line, finishing with 27 points and 12 rebounds, six coming on the offensive end.

Backyard Brawl: An injury to back-up big man Talib Zanna didn’t slow down Pittsburgh, as the Panthers emerged victorious in the Backyard Brawl, downing West West Virginia by 13. Brad Wanamaker had 11 points, seven rebounds and eight assists to lead the Panthers. As for West Virginia, the Mountaineers dropped to 8-7 in the Big East – they could end up finishing 10th in the league.

Bonus Basketball: Marquette faced a must-win situation heading into Connecticut last night, and the Golden Eagles finally came out of a close game with a win. Darius Johnson-Odom scored nine of his 17 points in overtime to lead Marquette to a 74-67 win over the Huskies, who were playing without Jim Calhoun on the sidelines. Kemba Walker had 27 points, but struggled mightily late in the game.

Set the DVR: Don’t set your DVR tonight. Do non-basketball things. But if you must, make sure Harvard and Princeton keep winning.

Numbers Don’t Lie:

  • Pittsburgh has now won 25 games in six straight seasons.
  • Derrick Williams’ eight-point performance was the first time he was held in single-digits this season.
  • Florida’s six-game SEC winning streak is its longest since 2007.
  • Kemba Walker is the first player since Ben Gordon and Emeka Okafor to score 600 points in a season. He has 622 points. 

Notes and Notables:

  • Florida picked up its ninth top-50 win of the year, holding off Georgia at home, 71-62. Chandler Parsons had 16 points, while Kenny Boynton dropped 18. Georgia sits squarely on the bubble.
  • Old Dominion just needs to avoid bad losses in order to get an at-large bid, and the Monarchs handled their business on Thursday, beating James Madison on the road, 75-59. 
  • Penn State has very slim hopes for an at-large bid, but the Nittany Lions got back to .500 in the Big Ten with a 14-point road win at Northwestern.
  • Morehead State vs. Murray State was supposed to be one of the better mid-major games of the year, but Murray had a 17-2 run to begin the second half and never looked back. The Racers clinch the top-seed in the OVC Tournament.
  • With Milwaukee beating Cleveland State and Valparaiso losing, there is now a three-team tie for first-place in the Horizon, with Valpo one game back. If Milwaukee wins this weekend, it will get the No. 1 seed and a double-bye.

Photo: US Presswire (Adam Woods)

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com