Bracketology Bubble Watch: Arizona State vs. UCLA highlights Thursday's games with teams on the bubble
Here's the latest from Jerry Palm for teams on the NCAA Tournament bubble
It was so close and yet so far for one team on the bubble Wednesday. And two teams going in opposite directions kept their respective momentum going.
Thursday gives a double bubble game featuring a team leading a major conference. That's not something I write every year.
Here are Wednesday's results of bubble teams in action:
Florida defeated LSU in a double-bubble game 81-66: Florida picked up an easy win over the Tigers to give the Gators six wins in their last eight games. Florida still has two road games left and a home tilt with Kentucky. I have them one win away from getting off the bubble.
LSU could be a win away from getting back off the bubble as well, but those wins have been tough to come by lately. The Tigers have lost five out of seven to slide down the bracket and the SEC standings.They do have two winnable home games coming up, sandwiched around a game at Arkansas.
Rutgers lost at Penn State 65-64: What a gut punch for Rutgers. The Scarlet Knights stormed back from a 21-point deficit to take a two-point lead in the final minute, only to see a Myles Dread three-pointer take the lead away and the much need road win with it. Rutgers still gets a shot at Purdue in Mackey Arena before the conference tournament.
Stanford beat Utah 70-62: The Cardinal made made it three straight wins against teams that could hurt them with an eight point win over the Utes. Next up is a chance at a quality win when Colorado visits. The Cardinal still has a game left at Oregon as well.
Arkansas beat Tennessee 86-69: Arkansas made it two in a row since the return of Isaiah Joe as the Razorbacks cruised past Tennessee. They are a long way from out of the woods though. They have a home game with LSU between two road games that could make that one irrelevant.
Here are the bubble teams in action Thursday, starting with a double-bubble game between Arizona State UCLA.
Thursday's bubble teams in action
All times Eastern
|Team||Game||Time (TV)||Bubble breakdown|
|ARIZONA ST. at UCLA||11 p.m. P12N||The Sun Devils are in first place in the Pac-12 at the moment and off the bubble with a win vs. the Bruins. It is only the fact that UCLA is on such a hot streak that I was hesitant to take ASU off.|
|UCLA is on fire. The Bruins have won nine of 11 to get within shouting distance of the bracket. One of those two losses was at ASU. UCLA did not play a great nonconference schedule and took a couple of bad losses at home. Their margin for error is still very small.|
|WICHITA ST. vs. Temple||8 p.m. ESPN||The Shockers have a couple of tough road games coming up but they need to take care of business at home. They have already lost twice on their home court this season, which is usually a pretty rare occurrence. The games that can really help them will not appear until the conference tournament.|
|SAINT MARY'S at Santa Clara||10 p.m. CBSSN||The Gaels' resume has taken a turn for the better lately as non-conference victims Wisconsin and Arizona State have played very well of late. However, they lost to this opponent once already, and that was at home. I would not recommend losing to the Broncos again.|
|USC vs. Arizona||10 p.m. ESPN||Unlike its crosstown rival, USC is playing its way down the bracket. The Trojans have lost five out of seven, with four of those losses coming on the road. It is nothing but home cooking the rest of the way, however none of those game figure to be easy.|
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