-WINTHROP AT TEXAS A&M. Winthrop has a very good team that gave Wisconsin a scare in a game they ended up losing in overtime, and also had a double-digit lead against North Carolina. They could very easily run the table or come close to it in league play, but other than the Bracket Buster this is their last shot at a quality win, so it is hugely important for them. A win in a game like this would help their profile and make the difference of whether or not they make the dance if they fail to win the conference tournament. TAMU is 11-2, but they lost both their games against the only two quality teams theyve played. This would probably end up being their best out of conference win. They are a very good team who nearly nearly beat UCLA and has yet to lose at home. Although they dont have any big wins, theyll get several chances at that in conference play. Winthrop wont, so this probably means a little bit more to them than it does to TAMU.
-TULSA AT ARKANSAS. Tulsa is off to a 7-2 start, but doesnt have any big wins to go along with that. Winning this would do wonders to boost their resume, but seeing how badly they struggled against Oklahoma on a neutral floor, beating Arkansas in a true road game wont be easy. Arkansas is 10-3 and this game should help their RPI, at least for right now, considering Tulsas 7-2 record.
-MISSOURI STATE AT BRADLEY (Missouri Valley). Missouri State fell to Creighton in their conference opener. They were very impressive out of conference, but are in danger of getting off to an 0-2 start in league play. Bradley as beaten handily by Northern Iowa and has a modest 9-4 record, but the standings are going to go a long way in determining who gets in, so both teams have a lot to play for. Bradley is young, but appears to be better than most people thought. Still, winning this game against a very good Missouri State team wont be easy for them.
-SOUTH FLORIDA AT CONNECTICUT (Big East). For the second straight year, U Conn was beaten handily in their conference opener. South Florida just got a nice win against Wake Forest, but winning on the road in conference is going to be very difficult. They just dont seem to have the horses to match up against U Conn. The Huskies have played a very weak schedule though, and that was reflected in their loss against West Virginia. If they do win this game, it would be one of their best wins up to this point.
-MARIST AT LOYOLA, MD (MAAC). Marist is off to a 10-3 start, and although they dont have any high caliber wins, they should be favored in nearly all their conference games and could get into the NCAAs as an at-large if they can run the table or come close to it. Marist is in the Bracket Buster, and theyll be playing as a road team, so they should get a shot at a big statement win. They still need to take care of business the rest of the way though.
-MIAMI, FL AT MASSACHUSETTS. U Masss record is 10-3, but they are lacking in the quality wins department. Because of that, their margin for error is very small. They do have an excellent front court and they are catching a Miami team that isnt playing with much momentum, so they should be able to take care of business at home.
-MISSISSIPPI STATE AT MISSOURI. Mississippi State has a good record, but has failed nearly all of their test against decent competition. Missouri has been excellent at home, but this is one of the better teams theyve faced so far. Its the final game for both teams before conference play, and since both need to establish their profiles its a big game.
-INDIANA AT OHIO STATE (Big Ten). Indiana has been playing better lately and has built up some momentum, but taking down Ohio State on the road is nearly impossible. If they were to pull it off, it would most likely end up being their best win of the year, but OSU just appears to be too athletic. Ohio State could very easily end up winning this league and getting a #1 seed, but as of now theyve struggled in their big out of conference tests, so this is a big game for them. Still, it looks as though theyre good enough to rack up quality wins in Big Ten play.
-LIBERTY AT FLORIDA. The Gators got a scare from UAB the other day, but they shouldnt have too much trouble against Liberty. This is sort of a tune up before conference play.
-SOUTHWESTERN OKLAHOMA STATE (nondiv1) AT OKLAHOMA STATE. This is a tune up for Okie State before they begin conference play.
-LONGWOOD AT PROVIDENCE. Providence is off to a fairly decent start and should improve to 10-3 with a win today.
-TEXAS ARLINGTON AT TEXAS. One last cupcake for Texas before they begin conference play.
Highlighted Games for Sat 2/17: Bracket Buster Edt
Feb 16, 2007, 09:16 pm
Drew Barnette runs down one of the biggest Saturdays of the college basketball regular season. With the Bracket Buster teams being played today, read about who is on the bubble and could really improve their NCAA Tournament resumes with quality wins today. Also read about teams who are favored to win their conference tournaments, and who are facing each other in games that will have an impact on their seeding, and possibly put them in a better position to pull a big upset.
Other big games include Louisville looking for their second big road win in a row as they travel to Marquette, Vanderbilt plays one of their biggest home games of the year as they host Floirda, Georgetown and Villanova Square off in an important Big East showdown,
All that, and much more in a huge Saturday for college hoops...
Mid Major Ramblings on the Eve of the Buster
Feb 16, 2007, 01:20 am
Drew Barnette gives his thoughts and opinions about the upcoming Bracket Buster, talks about how he feels mid-majors are viewed by the media today, looks at tonight's big game between Winthrop and Missouri State, and more...