Selection Sunday is just around the corner, which means that teams’ tournament destinies are on the line. We usually fire these up at the start of March, which means I should have done one yesterday, but I didn’t. Let’s get caught up on what we missed.
Richmond was clinging to the bubble before last night, when they lost a Q4 home game to Saint Joe’s. Former Muskie Dahmir Bishop poured home 1/1/1 with a steal in 16 minutes of play to lead the Hawks past the home team. Sticking with the A10 theme, St. Bonaventure lost a Q3 game at home to Dayton. The Bonnies are still in a lot of brackets as the A10 auto-bid, but this game whittled away a good deal of their margin for error. The A10 beneficiary of all this might be Saint Louis who beat a bad UMass team. They aren’t in the field at this point, but they’d be NIT bound if they lost that one.
In other conferences, bubble team (and loser to Marquette) North Carolina lost to fellow bubble team (and undefeated against Marquette this year) Syracuse. UNC is still probably in and ‘Cuse is still probably out, but they each got closer to the line with this result. Oregon picked up a good Q2 against Arizona, which probably punches the Ducks’ ticket.
Finally, in Mountain West action, Colorado State beat the brakes off of Air Force. This does nothing for Colorado State other than keep them from detonating their resume.
On to today’s action.
Toledo at Central Michigan, 5pm, ESPN+
Is Toledo on the bubble? Likely not, as they’re 4-3 in Q1/2 and have 3 Q3 losses, but it’s currently a moot point as they hold the MAC auto bid in every reputable bracket. Still, there’s a chance they could get an at-large look without that if things break right for them. Lose this one and that’s pretty much out of the question.
Xavier at Georgetown, 7pm, FS1
Big Q2 chance for Xavier against a Georgetown team that has run hot and cold this year.
Duke at Georgia Tech, 8pm, ACC Network
This is a good chance for Georgia Tech to all but punch their ticket with what would be a solid Q2 game at home. Duke - after a horrendous start to the season - is playing better than their numbers right now and needs this one to continue their charge towards the right side of the bubble.
Indiana at Michigan State, 8pm, BIG TEN Network
Both of these teams are on the edge of the bubble, though Indiana is probably farther adrift than Michigan State. One of them is going to take a huge step toward safety tonight. A win would move Indiana to 10-10 in Q1/2, which might be enough to negate their mediocre record and pair of bad losses. Michigan State doesn’t have any bad losses, but they’re not as strong at the top as Indiana. This would be a big Q2 win for them.