It was a good night for the bubble teams in action on Thursday. So good for one team in fact that I no longer consider it to be on the bubble.
We also welcome Indiana back to the bubble after a 92-74 win at Illinois. Let's not get too excited though. At 16-14, the Hoosiers still have a lot of work to do. They have six Quadrant 1 wins, which is good, but they are only 2-5 against Quadrant 2. Against the top three quadrants IU is 10-14. That would be the worst record against that group for an at-large team by two games.
Here's how the bubble teams in action Thursday fared:
UCF -- Defeated Cincinnati 58-55: UCF is safely in the field now after its second consecutive win over a top contender in the AAC. The preseason-favorite Knights look capable of winning the automatic bid are a No. 8 seed in the updated Bracketology bracket projection.
Lipscomb -- Defeated NJIT 78-55: Lipscomb, a No. 12 seed in the latest Bracketology projected bracket, will host Liberty on Sunday in the finals of the Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament in an effort to get off the bubble in the best way possible – by winning the automatic bid. But that's not a sure thing as the Flames, the No. 2 seed, toasted the Bisons in the first matchup in Nashville earlier this season.
Temple -- Defeated UConn 78-71: The Owls came away with another tough road win, this time over UConn. Temple, a No. 11 seed in the updated Bracketology bracket projection, has eight true road wins and is 10-6 overall away from home. They host red-hot UCF in the regular season finale.
|Purdue on Tuesday has taken a lot of pressure off of this game. Minnesota is a No. 10 seed in the updated bracket projection and a win would put Minnesota in the field for good.|
vs. Austin Peay in Ohio Valley Conference Tournament semifinals, 8 p.m. ET -- ESPNU
The Bruins make their Ohio Valley Conference Tournament debut against the Governors. The only team Belmont can afford to lose to and still hope to be an at-large team is Murray State. The Racers, the No. 2 seed in the OVC tourney, face Jacksonville State in the other semifinal at 9 p.m. Friday.