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Bubble Watch: 2/16/23

Projecting the NCAA Basketball Tournament field of 68

Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images

Next Update Sunday 2/19 (and after each Texas A&M game for the remainder of the season)

This has been a fun column to write the last couple of updates as the Aggies just keep winning and for now have played their way off the bubble. What do I mean by that? If today was Selection Sunday, there is zero doubt that A&M is in the field and probably a 9 seed (give or take 1 seed line). Unfortunately (or fortunately), today is not Selection Sunday. We need to keep winning to avoid sliding back into danger territory, and if we are able to win a few more, that means a couple more quad 1 opportunities and the chance to play for an even higher seed.

For the complete national picture of who is already locked in, what teams are in danger and who are the teams that we can possibly leap the next 3 weeks, that is the true purpose of this column. We start tracking by considering the automatic bids that are taken out of the equation, starting with the “Likely one-bid leagues”. These are the leagues that as of right now appear to be headed for only 1 bid going to the conference tournament winner, regardless of who that winner is. After accounting for these we have a better picture of how many bids are truly up for grabs.

Likely One-bid leagues

Conference (Projected Champ, Current Net)

  1. A10 (Dayton, 78) - maybe a .1% chance at an at large that you can read about after the bubble burst line.
  2. Atlantic Sun – (Liberty, 46) despite the NET – 0 Q1 wins, 1Q2 (Bradley) – no chance
  3. Big Sky (Montana State, 107)
  4. Big South (UNC Asheville, 156)
  5. Big West – (UC Irvine, 84)
  6. Colonial (Charleston, 54) - Charleston possibly has a chance to work their way back into at large contention but unlikely given any tournament loss is a resume killer.
  7. America East (Vermont, 118)
  8. Horizon (Youngstown State, 111)
  9. Ivy – (Yale, 70)
  10. MAC - (Kent State, 56) – despite the NET no Q1 or Q2 wins and a Q4 loss – very small chance realistically
  11. MAAC – (Iona, 71)
  12. MEAC (Norfolk State, 153)
  13. MVC (Bradley, 62) Won 7 straight to keep themselves a very fringe candidate but realistically there is not a path to an at large.
  14. Northeast (Wagner, 296)
  15. Ohio Valley (SIUE, 207)
  16. Patriot (Colgate, 103)
  17. Southland (Northwestern State, 166)
  18. Southern (Furman, 85)
  19. Sun Belt – (Southern Miss, 58) maybe a .1% chance at an at large, not a serious threat.
  20. SWAC (Grambling State, 204)
  21. WAC - Sam Houston State (60)

And just like that we are down to 11 conferences battling for 47 spots.

Multi-bid conference/at-large seeds

For the other 11 conferences, they each have a team that as of right now would make the field and get an at large if necessary. Their conference leader (in NET) will be counted as their auto bid and will be bolded. Eight leagues are almost certainly multi-bid no matter what (ACC, Big 12, Big Ten, SEC, Big East, MWC, Pac 12, and WCC)

The last 3 conferences (AC – Houston, CUSA – FAU, Summit – Oral Roberts) as of right now have one team solidly IN – if they win their conference tournament, they could be one bid leagues. But things need to shake out right over the last month of the season and in the conference tournament for that to come to fruition.

So, what about the 47 bids remaining? Let the counting begin…

Teams without any detail after their team name are considered locks, and will still be moved up/down as results come in but will no longer have a write up, which will allow us to focus more energy on analyzing those that are truly bubble teams. Not very many yet, but we will see a handful earn lock status with each update the rest of the way.

Net ranking listed by each bubble team name. Bold teams count as the auto bid placeholder for their respective conference

1 seeds

22. Houston AAC auto bid
23. Alabama SEC auto bid
24. Purdue Big Ten auto bid
25. Kansas Big 12 auto bid

2 seeds

26. Arizona Pac 12 auto bid
27. Baylor
28. Texas
29. Tennessee

3 seeds

30. UCLA
31. Marquette Big East auto bid
32. Virginia ACC auto bid
33. Gonzaga WCC Auto bid (12, 20-5, 10-2) Going to hold off from locking in the Zags just based on the schedule, if they were to collapse and lose out that means taking several Q4 losses. No reasonable path to not see them in the field though. (2/16 @ Loyola Marymount).

4 seeds

34. Iowa State (LOCK)
35. UConn (8, 19-7, 8-7)- Missed a chance on Saturday to reach lock status. The conference record is a concern for now, but their schedule is about as soft as it gets down the stretch. Beat Alabama and Iowa State OOC so as long as they don’t completely collapse, they are fine. (2/18 Seton Hall)
36. Miami (LOCK)
37. Kansas State (20, 19-7, 7-6) Lost 4 of 5. I don’t think they want to end the year losing 10 of 11, so I think 1 more win to get to 20 would be wise but they may not get it until March comes around. (2/18 Iowa State)

5 seeds

38. Indiana (LOCK)
39. Xavier (25, 19-7, 11-4) – Lost their last 2, both on the road. Still have 5 quad 1 wins, 6-1 vs. quad 2 but with the recent skid will stay out of lock territory for at least another game with a quad 4 opponent next up. (2/18 @DePaul)
40. Illinois (27, 17-8, 8-6) – Just got swept by Penn State. Erase that season series and this might be a 3 seed with great wins over UCLA and Texas OOC. As it stands that’s now 8 losses, just an 8-6 mark in conference and an interesting stretch coming up with some tough road games. 1 more win should be enough to be a lock but they may have to wait a few games to get it. (2/18 @Indiana)
41. St. Mary’s (6, 21-5, 11-1) Still just 2 quad 1 wins (Gonzaga, San Diego State) to counter 2 quad 3 losses. Great computer profile. It’s hard for me to put them too much higher than this. Still their risk of missing the tournament is practically zero. They have a couple of quad 4 games left, assuming they win at least one of them they will move to a lock. (2/16 @ San Diego, 2/18 BYU)

6 seeds

42. Northwestern (43, 19-7, 10-5) – Wow – 4 games ago and coming off 2 straight losses, I thought NW might be on the verge of a long losing streak. Well 4 massive wins later including knocking off Purdue and Indiana back-to-back for now 7 quad 1 wins, Northwestern feels like a lock. Going to hold off for 1 more win just to be certain since their only win of note OOC was Liberty but they may have done enough already (2/19 Iowa)
43. Creighton (13, 17-9, 11-4) The 8-game winning streak is over after the OT loss at Providence. That is just a temporary setback however and they are still on track to officially reach lock status with 2 more wins in the last 5 with a several can’t lose type quad 3/quad 4 opportunities remaining. (2/18 @Saint John’s)
44. San Diego State MWC auto bid (19, 20-5, 12-2) Winners of 14 of 16. Now dominating the MWC which is exactly what they need to do given their only good win OOC is over Ohio State which has lost a lot of luster. #10 SOS and no bad losses. Assuming they win their next can’t lose game vs. Colorado State they will be a lock. (2/21 Colorado State)
45. TCU (24, 17-9, 6-7) – Dropped their 4th straight to fall to 6-7 in conference. They have great top tier wins at Kansas, at Baylor, and over Providence and Iowa, but a middling conference record and a November loss to Northwestern State at home. Probably need just 1 more to feel secure given the difficult SOS. The next one coming up at home to OSU is probably the best opportunity to get it given the other 2 home games are Kansas and Texas. (2/18 Oklahoma State)

7 seeds

46. Duke (34, 18-8, 9-6) – Survived the upset bid against Notre Dame to avoid a 3-game losing streak. Their loss at Clemson is their worst loss which isn’t terrible by any means. An interesting road test coming up at Syracuse, if they can take care of business there and then beat a terrible Louisville team next week then they will reach lock status. If they stumble against Syracuse (who seems to be maybe figuring some things out) it could set up for a somewhat interesting stretch run. (2/18 @Syracuse)
47. Providence (41, 19-7, 11-4) Beat Creighton on Tuesday to inch closer to lock status. Can’t lose game coming up on their home floor to protect their status and avoid spilling what might be a crucial week for them. (2/18 Villanova)
48. Michigan State (35, 16-9, 8-6) Some things are bigger than basketball. My thoughts are with the MSU family as they made the correct decision to cancel their game this week vs, Minnesota. In terms of what that means for basketball, this Q4 game was their last game on the schedule outside of quad 2. If they can just finish 1-4 that should be good enough given the OOC wins over Kentucky and Oregon and 6 quad 1 wins already. (2/18 @ Michigan)
49. Maryland (28, 17-8, 8-6) No losses outside of Quad 1. Best wins are Indiana, Illinois, and Miami. Like the other Big 10 bubblers, if they can just finish 10-10 in conference that feels like it will be good enough. (Next: 2/16 Purdue)

8 seeds

50. Iowa (39, 16-9, 8-6) The worst loss of a potential tournament team goes to the Hawkeyes losing to #345 Eastern Illinois on their home court, but it’s the only bad loss. The loss to Wisconsin did just drop to a Q3 loss, however. 7-6 in Quad 1, 3-1 in Quad 2. In similar position to Michigan State, if they can just go 2-4 down the stretch to get to .500 in conference, they are in. (2/16 Ohio State)
51. Rutgers (29, 16-10, 8-7) – Rutgers is reeling. Just took their 3rd straight L, this one at home to Nebraska by 10, a quad 3 loss. That’s now 10 losses and a conference record of just 8-7. Their best OOC win is against a Wake Forest team that likely won’t make the tournament. The win @Purdue is everything for this resume. They don’t have as much OOC as some of the other Big 10 bubble teams so they may need a 10-8 conference mark to feel safe. The schedule down the stretch is easy enough that accomplishing shouldn’t be a problem but man that was a big chance missed vs. Nebraska. (2/18 @Wisconsin)
52. Missouri (50, 19-7, 7-6) – When Mizzou loses it seems like they are really noncompetitive and that is killing their NET. Blown out vs. Auburn has the NET and conference record teetering on danger territory. The wins over Tennessee and Illinois are carrying them. May still need a 3-2 vs. a very manageable schedule to get it done. (2/18 Texas A&M)
53. Pitt (48, 19-7, 12-3) – Winners of 6 in a row to get to 12-3 in conference and for now play their way off the bubble. Didn’t do much OOC outside of a win at Northwestern but in ACC play they have wins over Virginia, UNC (twice) and Miami. If they can just keep beating the ACC cellar dwellers Pitt should be fine. (Next: 2/18 @Virginia Tech)

9 seeds

54. Oklahoma St (33, 16-10, 7-6) 5 game winning streak is over after losing to Kansas, but it was a heck of a run going from out of the field on Feb 1 to almost a lock by mid-February. Given their non-conference I think they need 1 more win to feel safe but looking at the schedule, none are gimmes. (2/18 @TCU)
55. NC State (38, 20-7, 10-6) Took what might be their worst loss of the season on Tuesday night at Syracuse. That’s the end of a tough 3 game road stretch for them and now they return home for 3 quad 2 opportunities. NC State is the definition of a typical 8/9 seed just kinda treading water, no real bad losses, no wins that are going to jump out at you, winning the games they are supposed to, best win OOC is over Dayton. A 2-2 finish and they are fine, anything worse than that potentially gets a bit dicey. (2/19 North Carolina @Syracuse)

56. Texas A&M (31, 19-7, 11-2) – Boom! That was the bigtime quad 1 win that I was waiting on to really make the big move up the bubble watch. As of now Texas A&M has clearly played their way out of Dayton with four straight gritty wins. That’s now 4-4 vs. quad 1 competition and 2-1 vs. Quad 2 which is suddenly very respectful. Ya, ya, the 2 quad 4 losses are still a black mark on the resume and prevent us from being in the conversation for a top five seed line (for now) but as of right now we are not a bubble team. Alas, today is not selection Sunday. We still have five regular season games to go, and while none of the games would really hurt the resume by dropping them (except maybe at Ole Miss) we certainly can’t lose all of them. Just going 1-4 for the last five would possibly be enough (but would lead to an extremely nervous conference tournament week). 2-3 is an absolute lock…but hey lets dream a bit here….5-0 and the Aggies are SEC champs, 24-7, 8-4 vs. Quad 1 and are at that point probably hanging around the 5 seed line. As fun as talking bubble is, my wish for this March is that we are talking about a conference championship race. The road to stay in that race won’t be easy, Mizzou’s only home losses this year are against Kansas and Alabama. It sure would be something to join that elite list and see us shoot up another seed line. (2/18 @Mizzou)

57. West Virginia (22, 15-11, 4-9) WVU has been great at protecting home court which has led to some great wins 5-10 vs. Quad 1. Worst loss is at Oklahoma. The only concern with this profile is the conference record. There is a precedent that 7-11 is good enough, you have to think with how good the Big 12 this year that they can still get in if they can just get to 6-12 in conference. Home games left against Texas Tech and Oklahoma State will probably be enough, but if they lose both of those, they are going to have to score an upset somewhere else. (2/18 Texas Tech)

10 seeds

58. Florida Atlantic CUSA auto bid (17, 22-2, 14-1) – Won 22 of 23. Only losses are @UAB and @Ole Miss. Best win is at Florida, if they can win out in the regular season, they will be a lock going into the conference tournament. No teams in the top 100 left on the schedule. If they stub their toe and take an unexpected loss, they will have a nervous wait on Selection Sunday if they need an at large. (2/16 @Middle Tennessee State)
59. Auburn (26, 18-8, 8-5) – Auburn stops the 3-game losing skid and 6 losses in the last 7 by blasting Mizzou by 33. That was impressive. No bad losses may still be the best thing going for this resume. Only 2 quad 1 wins over Arkansas and Northwestern. Really need to win the next 2 also to clinch a .500 record in the SEC, the final 3 to end the season is a brutal stretch @UK, @Alabama and vs. Tennessee. (2/18 @Vanderbilt)
60. Nevada (32, 19-6, 10-3) Winners of 4 straight, including 2 quad 1 wins the wolfpack have played their way in for now. No bad losses if they can keep it that way then they are in. @Utah State is by no means a must win anymore so long as they win the others. (2/18 @Utah State)
61. Arkansas (21, 17-9, 6-7) – The win over San Diego State and avoiding any bad losses gave Arkansas a bit of breathing room going into SEC play. They have used up just about all that room by going 6-7 in SEC play. If they can just finish .500, they should still get in but that may be easier said than done given they have road games left at Alabama and Tennessee. Assuming they lose both of those that means they have zero margin for error and need to win all 3 vs. Florida, Georgia, and Kentucky. (2/18 Florida)

11 seeds

62. Boise State (23, 19-6, 10-3) – Just 1-3 vs. Quad 1 (vs. Texas A&M) with a quad 3 and a quad 4 loss mixed in to South Dakota State and Charlotte. Coming home now against UNLV and a reeling New Mexico for some good chances for resume building wins to get into safer territory before ending the year with 2 really tough ones against SDSU and at Utah State. (2/19 UNLV)
63. Memphis (42, 19-6, 9-3) – The 4-1 record OOC vs. the SEC will certainly be a talking point if it comes down to Memphis vs. A&M, Florida, or Kentucky. Memphis still looks like the most likely 2nd team out of the AAC but assuming they have 3 losses left to Houston (2 in reg season + one in the AAC tournament) do they have any margin for another loss? Probably not given the weakness of the competition and lack of any topflight wins. If they do beat everyone left except UH I do think they are in (UCF, @Wichita State, Cincinnati, @SMU). (Next 2/16 UCF)
64. Oral Roberts – Summit League auto bid (37, 19-4, 14-0) – It’s time to take the Summit seriously as a potential bid stolen. ORU has won 10 straight games (20 out of 21) and they don’t have a loss outside of Quad 1. All 4 losses are respectable (St. Mary’s, Houston, Utah State, New Mexico). League play will leave no margin for error as any loss is a bad loss. That said they haven’t slipped up yet and just have 4 more tests left. If they take their first and only bad loss in the conference tournament – I can see them sneaking in as a last 4 in. (2/16 North Dakota, 2/18 North Dakota State)
*65. North Carolina (45, 16-10, 8-7) – Tar Heels fall to 0-9 against Quad 1. They have 3 more quad 1 games left @NC State, and home against Virginia and Duke. They are going to have to win at least 1 of them to show they can beat a good team (in addition to winning their can’t lose games @Notre Dame and @ Florida State.) Even with their worst loss being a 1-point loss on their home court to Pitt, at a certain point the losses pile up and if you play in a major conference you have to prove you can do it at least once. The question is…is once good enough? Probably but it will have them as a last 4 in. They need to win 4 out of the last 5 to feel comfortable. (2/19 @NC State)
*66. Clemson (64, 19-7, 10-4) – Clemson stopped their freefall/3 game losing streak with a get right game vs. Florida State. Their NET is still terrible, they still have 3 bad losses to South Carolina (A&M beat them), Loyola Chicago (A&M beat them) and BC. Another must win game vs. Louisville up next. Assuming they win that one and at home to Syracuse and Notre Dame for 14 conference wins they should get in, but the destination may be Dayton unless get a win at NC State or Virginia (2/18 @Louisville)

12 Seeds

*67. Kentucky (40, 17-9, 8-5) – Massive win at Mississippi State to pick up their 2nd quad 1 win. Still trying to erase the ugly loss on their home floor against South Carolina. Still need to win 3 of the last 5 to have a realistic chance at an at large but it won’t be easy given the schedule. (2/18 Tennessee)
*68. Mississippi State (44, 17-9, 5-8) The 5-game winning streak is over after Kentucky came to town to drop MSU to 5-8 in the SEC. The resume looks decent on paper with 3 quad 1 wins (Marquette, @Arkansas, TCU) and no losses to Q3/Q4 but the 5-8 record in the SEC at least raises a few eyebrows. The schedule is much more forgiving down the stretch, but they need to start correcting that SEC record right now and probably need to win 4 of the last 5 to get there. (2/18 @Ole Miss)

*Play-in game participants

------------------THE BUBBLE BURSTS HERE------------------

69. Charleston CAA auto bid? (54, 24-3, 13-2) They have taken advantage of lots of losses from other bubble teams to work their way back to the cut line but there is still zero margin for error here. Any tournament loss would be a bad one they need to win out in the regular season to even be in the conversation. Best wins are against Virginia Tech and Kent State. (2/16 @Elon)
70. USC (63, 17-8, 9-5) I have moved USC much further down than many based on their 0-2 week. Playing on the road is tough sure but you just can’t lose at Oregon State when playing for your bubble life. A couple absolute must wins coming up as they return home. Their only good win OOC over Auburn is looking less stellar. (2/16 Cal, 2/18 Stanford)
71. Wisconsin (77, 15-10, 7-8) – Beat Michigan to stay alive in the at large race. Really good quad 1 record 5-6 with solid wins vs. Penn State, Iowa, Maryland, Marquette, USC and Dayton but the NET ranking is a big issue right now, largely because they have not been able to blow anyone out and their offensive efficiency numbers are abysmal. (2/18 Rutgers)
72. New Mexico (55, 18-7, 6-7) – I said in the last update that New Mexico was in a tailspin…well if you can’t pull out of a tailspin eventually you crash and burn, and it appears that may be exactly what is happening. That’s now 4 straight losses, including to Air Force, and the latest to #197 Wyoming. 4 Quad 3/quad 4 losses on the season. I know the win at St. Mary’s is a good one and they did win @San Diego State but its hard to overlook just how terribly they are playing right now to go 6-7 in the Mountain West…yeesh. To put that in perspective that puts them behind San Jose State in conference and 3 games back of Utah State. Unless they can pull off a win at either @Boise State or to finish the sweep of San Diego State (and the way they are playing that’s hard to see), then I just don’t see the Lobos racking up enough wins to get there. The NET is also going to become a big concern. Absolute, stone cold must win coming up this weekend. (2/17 @ San Jose State)
73. Southern Miss Sun Belt auto bid? (58, 20-4, 12-2) Almost certainly will need the auto bid, but they have won 9 straight and if they win out their resume will be getting close to at large consideration. (2/16 @South Alabama, 2/18 Georgia Southern)
74. Arizona State (69, 18-8, 9-6) Got the 2-0 week they needed. Backs are still against the wall coming home for a couple more must win games. (2/16 Colorado, 2/18 Utah)
75. Seton Hall (65, 15-11, 9-7) 3 good quad 1 wins over UConn, Rutgers, and Memphis but the loss to Siena is a black mark on the resume and the record just flat out isn’t good enough when playing in the 2023 version of the Big East. 3 of the last 4 games are quad 1 opportunities. If that might be enough considering that probably means beating Xavier and at Providence. (2/18 @UConn)
76. Oregon (49, 15-12, 9-7) Washington drives a big nail into the duck coffin. I am not as high as others to begin with on this Oregon resume, OOC losses to UC Irvine, and Utah Valley. Just 3-7 vs. quad 1 and the win on their home court vs. Arizona is really the only especially noteworthy win. The biggest issue for Oregon is that there really isn’t an opportunity to move up the rest of the way. The final 4 games come against 11-15 Washington State, 9-16 Oregon State, 3-22 Cal and 11-14 Stanford. Best case scenario is just treading water and hope the rest of the bubble comes back to them a bit. (2/19 @Washington State)
77. Oklahoma (66, 13-13, 3-10) Beating Kansas State will keep the Sooners on the list just hanging around a little bit longer. That stops a streak of 7 straight big 12 losses. They also have the win over Alabama to hang their hat on. Probably still must win 3 of the next 5 to be in consideration. (2/18 @Texas)
78. Penn State (61, 15-11, 6-9) – Penn State was on life support after the 4-game losing streak, but the upset of Illinois to give them the season streak has given them new life. There still isn’t too much to this resume other than the wins over Illinois, Indiana, and Iowa, they did nothing OOC, so they really need to get to .500 in conference to have a chance. That means winning 4 of their last 5. (2/18 @Minnesota)
79. Florida (51, 14-12, 7-6) Stayed alive by beating Ole Miss but lost Castleton to injury. They are in desperation mode with a difficult trip to Fayetteville coming up. Need to win 4 of 5 down the stretch. (2/18 @Arkansas)
80. Wake Forest (76, 17-9, 9-6) – Won 3 in a row to keep hope alive. Need to win 4/5 to be in the conversation, maybe even need to win out. (2/18 @Miami)
81. Utah (52, 17-9, 10-5). 2-0 last week to stay alive. Just 1-5 against quad 1 so they really need to take advantage of the trip to Arizona coming up. (2/16 @Arizona, 2/18 @Arizona State)
82. Utah State (36, 19-7, 9-5) Stay alive by winning a can’t lose game against Air Force. Despite a great NET, they still have zero quad 1 wins and probably need to win out to erase the memories of a loss on their home court to Weber State and get in. Big chance and must win coming up vs. borderline quad 1 Nevada. (2/18 Nevada)
83. Texas Tech (59, 14-12, 3-10) – Well – this is why Texas Tech stayed on the Bubble Watch list even as their conference record blossomed to 0-8. That’s now 3 straight home wins against quad 1 opponents (Iowa State, Kansas State, Texas) and their worst loss is to Oklahoma. Their backs are still firmly against the wall but there is a viable path to get into the conversation especially if they can beat West Virginia on Saturday. Need to win 4 of the last 5 to have a shot. If they fail on Saturday that’s probably curtains, given there is still a trip to Kansas on the schedule the rest of the schedule…. actually, somewhat manageable by Big 12 standards. (2/18 West Virginia)
84. Virginia Tech (67, 15-11, 5-10) The last couple games have not been kind to Virginia Tech picking up a quad 3 and a quad 4 loss. That’s now 4 total losses vs. quad 3/4 and still only 2 quad 1 wins. Not a great trend for a team that lost 7 straight games in January. Absolutely must win out each of their last 5 to be considered now. (2/18 Pitt)
85. North Texas (47, 19-5, 12-3) – Winners of 6 straight, if they can win out all the way until a loss in the championship to FAU, we are talking about a 26-win team…. maybe (2/16 @La Tech, 2/18 @UTEP)
86. Bradley (62, 19-8, 13-4) – The problem here is that they are 0-4 in Quad 1 and have no more chances. Very unlikely even if they win out. They have won 7 in a row to stay in very fringe contention. (2/19 @Southern Illinois)
87. Kent State MAC auto bid? (56, 19-5, 11-2) Needs to win out to be in the conversation and even then, it’s a conversation that probably starts and ends with zero quad 1 wins. Won their last 3 to stay somewhat relevant. (Next 2/18 Eastern Michigan)
88. Michigan (72, 14-12, 8-7)- Lost at Wisconsin on Tuesday to miss yet another chance at a quality win. Still 5 chances left, with 4 of those being quad 1. If they can go just 4-1, to get to 6 Quad 1 wins, 12-8 in the Big 10 it feels like that may be enough. Now they haven’t actually shown anything to show they are capable of that kind of run, but the opportunity is there. (2/18 Michigan State)
89. Dayton A10 Auto bid? (78, 17-9, 9-4) Won @VCU and vs. Saint Louis this week to eliminate both teams. I honestly don’t see a realistic path here given 0 quad 1 wins (and no more Q1 opportunities) but as the clear-cut best A10 profile we will keep them here until they lose again. (2/17 @Loyola-Chicago)
90. Drake (73, 21-6, 13-4) – if you are going to have Bradley and Dayton here you might as well have Drake, the 2nd team from the MVC. They at least have a Q1 win beating Mississippi State on a neutral court and may have a chance to add a 2nd one by winning on the road at Bradley at the end of the yar. Won 8 straight. (2/19 Belmont)
91. Tulane (90, 16-7, 9-3) - Winners of 4 straight including at Memphis. 5-3 in Q1 and Q2. The 3 Q3 losses are a killer. If they win out that means winning at Houston which would get them at least some consideration. (2/18 @USF)
92. Colorado (74, 14-12, 6-9) - maybe if they win out? (2/16 @Arizona State, 2/18 @Arizona)
93. UCF (57, 15-9, 6-6) – maybe if they win out? (2/16 @Memphis)
94. Saint John’s (99, 16-11, 6-10) – Stayed alive with a 2OT win over a bad DePaul team. In the unlikely event they win out they would finish at .500 in conference and have 2 wins over UConn to go along with wins over Providence, Marquette, and Creighton. So, they arguably control their own destiny but it’s hard to imagine they can take advantage of that. (2/18 Creighton)
95. Ohio State (53, 11-14, 3-11) I wish I could drop the Buckeyes completely out of consideration. The problem is that even at 14 losses already and losing 11 of the last 12…. if they found a way to win out to get to win out to get to 9-11 in conference, they would have 7 Q1 wins and likely in. Backs now firmly against the wall however, the next loss eliminates all hope (finally). (2/16 @Iowa)

Eliminated since last edition:

  • UNLV (Lost 2/14 to SJSU)


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