NEWS, AND NOTES
-For Chad Sherwood’s UTR Game of the Day between Hampton and Norfolk State – CLICK HERE
-There were a lot of exciting games last night, but for the most part it was a pretty chalky night. Villanova needed overtime at Seton Hall, but pulled out 1 point win. Xavier clinched at least a share of first place in the Big East with their win over Providence, and will lock it up out right if they can beat DePaul this weekend. Clemson picked up a nice home win against Florida State and is continuing to look like a protected seed. And, Nevada blasted UNLV on the road.
-The only (sort of) surprise was Butler’s overtime loss at Saint John’s. It doesn’t sink Butler, but it does pull them down some. I still think they’ll make the field, but if they lose their next one and lose their first Big East Tournament game it’s going to be a nervous Selection Sunday for them.
-WICHITA STATE AT UCF (American). Wichita State is good enough to win out and will likely end up as a protected seed if they do. This won’t be the easiest road game, but it’s certainly winnable.
-VIRGINIA AT LOUISVILLE (ACC). Virginia is looking like they’ll end up as a #1 seed, and Louisville is squarely on the bubble. This is the kind of win that could push the Cardinals into the field, but it’s easier said than done. Virginia’s defense has been suffocating all year, and they’re ranked #1 for a reason.
-WESTERN KENTUCKY AT MIDDLE TENNESSEE (Conference USA). We know Middle Tennessee is in the rankings. We know they’re good. The question is whether or not the selection committee will take them if they fail to win the conference tournament. Western Kentucky is a good team, and this won’t be an easy game for Middle to win, but it’s one they need to win if they want to end up inside the bubble. It should be a fun one. It’s hard to remember the last time Middle Tennessee had a home game as charged up as this one is likely to be.
-NC STATE AT GEORGIA TECH (ACC). NC State is safe so long as they hold serve, and that means being able to beat sub-NIT teams even if it is a road game.
-CINCINNATI AT TULANE (American). Cincinnati is ranked in the top ten, but in order to end up as a protected seed they, at the very least, need to hold serve in games against sub-NIT teams and probably need to get at least one win against Wichita State or Houston before the end of the American Tournament.
-CALIFORNIA AT ARIZONA STATE (Pac Twelve). Arizona State simply cannot afford to lose this game. They are way down in the Pac Twelve standings and while they’re still in the field their resume continues to slip. Losing at home to one of the worst P5 teams in the nation this year would be more than just a slip.
-WEBER STATE AT MONTANA (Big Sky). Montana can clinch first place outright with a win tonight. Weber State is dangerous, so it’s not necessarily a given.
-STANFORD AT ARIZONA (Pac Twelve). I’ll just say that this is a winnable game for an Arizona program that needs something to feel good about. It’s hard to say what the status of their coach will be at this time tomorrow.
-OREGON STATE AT WASHINGTON (Pac Twelve). If Washington has any chance of landing inside the bubble they need to win their final two games and then come up with a very strong showing in the conference tournament.