The latest night of bubble watching has cleared up the picture a little bit more.
At this point Georgetown needs a miracle run after another loss in Big East play, leaving them at 6-11 overall. Maryland blew a great opportunity to knock off Wake Forest. And Cincinnati.....what happened? The Bearcats lose their first really bad game of the year to South Florida. I don't get how a team can play un-motivated in the closing stretch when they know every game counts as much as it does. I just don't get it, at all.
And last but not least, Oklahoma State is in right now. The Cowboys are playing their best basketball of the year and they have a chance to seemingly sew up a bid against Oklahoma in their next game. How about that?
I'm sure the one question everyone wants to know the answer to is which bubble team listed below is in best shape to grab an at large bid. Right now it would be California, followed by Boston College, Wisconsin, and Tennessee. All four of those teams are pretty close being locks, followed by everyone else in one jumbled up mess (although Okie State has snuck into the top five quickly).
At Large Spots: 34
Locks (minus teams projected to win conference tournament): 28-7=21
At Large Spots Remaining: 34-21=13
My math shows that I am projecting that 13 at large spots remain .
I have 38 teams listed on the bubble below to fight for those spots. If your team isn't on the list below they probably need to win their conference tournament to get into the NCAA Tournament, but it is possible that a few teams can still win their way onto the bubble.
Here's today's bubble watch:
Boston College (20-9, 8-6): The Eagles have wins over Duke, Wake Forest, and North Carolina this season so it's going to be hard for the selection committee to leave Boston College out of the Big Dance. The last two are very winnable so a 10- 6 finish in conference play is very likely.
Remaning Schedule: N. C. State, Georgia Tech
Nice Wins: UAB, Duke, Florida State, North Carolina, Maryland, Virginia Tech
Bad Losses: St. Louis, Harvard
Virginia Tech (17-11, 7-7): The Hokies have wins over Clemson & Wake Forest, but they haven't helped themselves lately outside of their road win over the Tigers. On Saturday the loss to Duke at home was costly because the Hokies had a chance to really solidify their resume.
Remaning Schedule: North Carolina, Florida State
Nice Wins: Boston College, Wake Forest, Clemson
Bad Losses: Georgia, Seton Hall
Maryland (18-11, 7-8): The Terps win over North Carolina was shocking, mainly because they had been blown out by good competition in most meetings this year. Now it's time to get serious though. Losing to Wake Forest wasn't terrible but it was disappointing after the Terps led for a good deal of the second half. The Virginia game is a must have.
Remaning Schedule: Virginia
Nice Wins: Michigan State, Michigan, North Carolina, Miami (FL)
Bad Losses: Morgan State
Miami FL (17-10, 6-8): The Hurricanes have played a lot of good teams this season, including Connecticut and Kentucky out of conference. The key is that their computer numbers are fantastic and they have two very winnable games remaining on their schedule against Georgia Tech & NC State.
Remaning Schedule: Georgia Tech, N. C. State
Nice Wins: Kentucky, Boston College, Maryland, Wake Forest, Boston College
Bad Losses: N. C. State
Providence (18-11, 10-7): The Friars were really a forgotten bubble team before their huge win over #1 Pittsburgh on Wednesday night. Now the entire college basketball world is in shock and Providence is the talk of the bubble world. Now sitting at ten Big East wins a victory over Villanova would be huge for their at large chances.
Remaining Schedule: Villanova
Nice Wins: Pittsburgh, Syracuse, Cincinnati (2),
Bad Losses: Northeastern, Baylor
Cincinnati (18-12, 8-9): What a terrible time to finally get your first "bad loss". The Bearcats fell to South Florida on Tuesday, meaning they probably need at least three wins the rest of the way to have a major argument for an at large berth on Selection Sunday. First they must take care of Seton Hall instead of letting another game slip away.
Remaning Schedule: Seton Hall
Nice Wins: UAB, UNLV, West Virginia, Georgetown
Bad Losses: South Florida
Notre Dame (16-13, 7-10): Things are starting to look bleak again for the Fighting Irish. Before losses to Connecticut & Villanova the Fighting Irish had revived their season with wins over Providence and Louisville. Now they are back in need of a deep Big East Tournament run to make the Big Dance.
Remaning Schedule: St. Johns
Nice Wins: Providence, Louisville, Georgetown, Texas
Bad Losses: St. Johns
Georgetown (15-13, 6-11): Georgetown is one of the weirdest teams in recent memory. They have wins over Memphis, Villanova, Syracuse, and Connecticut (all consensus Sweet 16 contenders at the very least) but they have losses to Seton Hall & St. Johns. Go figure. They need to beat DePaul and make a run towards the Big East Championship.
Remaining Schedule: DePaul
Nice Wins: Syracuse, Providence, Maryland, Memphis, Villanova, Connecticut
Bad Losses: Seton Hall, St. Johns
Ohio State (19-9, 9-8): The Buckeyes win over Iowa ended their recent streak of losses (4 of 5) although it was not even close to an impressive victory. They close with pesky Northwestern, which has already knocked off Ohio State once. Winning that one would probably get them in good enough shape to get in.
Remaning Schedule: Northwestern
Nice Wins: Penn State, Michigan, Purdue, Miami (FL), Notre Dame, Butler
Bad Losses: Northwestern
Penn State (20-9, 9-7); Whew! That's the sound of Penn State fans after their comeback to knock off Big Ten bottom dwellar Indiana. Another win over Illinois (hopefully not as ugly as last time) and a win over Iowa would give the Nittany Lions a total of 11 Big Ten wins. That certainly may do it.
Remaining Schedule: Illinois, Iowa
Nice Wins: Illinois, Minnesota, Michigan
Bad Losses: None (did lose to Rhode Island)
Wisconsin (18-10, 9-7): Wisconsin's resume reminds me a lot of Notre Dame's resume (except they lost six straight games compared to seven), but the Badgers have much better computer numbers. They have now won six of seven games following a six game losing streak. The win over Michigan more or less locks them up barring a huge collapse.
Remaning Schedule: Minnesota, Indiana
Nice Wins: Ohio State, Penn State, Michigan (2), Virginia Tech
Bad Losses: Iowa
Minnesota (20-8, 8-8): The Golden Gophers appeared destined for an at large bid early in the season after a 18-3 start to the season that included a win over Louisville. Since then the Gophers are 2-5 with losses to Penn State & Michigan included. The last two aren't easy but winning at least one is very necessary.
Remaining Schedule: Wisconsin, Michigan
Nice Wins: Louisville, Wisconsin, Penn State, Ohio State
Bad Losses: Northwestern
Michigan (18-12, 8-9): The Wolverines are up and down as evident by their wins over Duke & UCLA and losses to Maryland & Iowa. Still, how many teams have ever been left out of the NCAA Tournament when having wins over Duke and UCLA in the same season? I'm guessing it's a short list. The loss to Wisconsin makes the game with Minnesota crucial.
Remaining Schedule: Minnesota
Nice Wins: Purdue, Minnesota, Duke, UCLA, Illinois
Bad Losses: Iowa
Kansas State (20-10, 8-7): The Wildcats loss to Oklahoma State all but eliminates them from bubble contention without a gigantic run through the Big 12 Touranment. If they win against lowly Colorado then the door is still open (barely) for an at large bid.
Remaining Schedule: Colorado
Nice Wins: Texas
Bad Losses: Baylor, Nebraska, Oregon, Iowa
Oklahoma State (20-9, 9-6): How about Oklahoma State? The Cowboys have wins over both Texas & Oklahoma State in back to back games, and guess who they get next? Oklahoma. A win over the Sooners would pretty much wrap up an at large bid for the Cowboys, because I don't see any way the committee could leave them out. They are sitting pretty right now.
Remaning Schedule : Kansas State, Oklahoma
Nice Wins: Siena, Nebraska, Texas A&M, Texas
Bad Losses: Texas A&M, Baylor
Texas A&M (21-8, 7-7): The Aggies seem like the forgotten team that just won't fade away. Texas A&M can't afford a slipup against Colorado before playing Big 12 monster Missouri. Winning out would make the committee think twice about leaving the Aggies out, especially with a split against Oklahoma State and a win over SEC champion LSU.
Remaining Schedule : Colorado, Missouri
Nice Wins: Nebraska, Oklahoma State, LSU
Bad Losses: Baylor, Kansas State
California (21-8, 10-6): The Golden Bears missed a huge chance to lock up a bid on Saturday night against UCLA. The Bears have Arizona and Arizona State left on the schedule. A win in either game would probably be enough to lock up an at large bid. Even if Cal loses out it's going to be tough to deny them a bid with 10 conference wins.
Remaining Schedule : Arizona, Arizona State
Nice Wins: Washington (twice), Arizona, Utah, UNLV
Bad Losses: Oregon State (2)
Arizona (18-11, 8-8): Arizona has lost three straight games to Arizona State, Washington State, and Washington. A win over the Huskies on Saturday would've immensely improved their profile. Instead Arizona has to look at the plus side, which is two games remaining against mediocre conference foes. Wins over Gonzaga, Kansas, UCLA, and Washington are all nice.
Remaining Schedule : California, Stanford
Nice Wins: UCLA, Washington, Gonzaga, San Diego State, Kansas
Bad Losses: Washington State (did lose to USC though)
USC (16-12, 7-9): USC's inconsistency has left the Trojans needing a deep run in the Pac Ten Tournament. Even winning their last two games will not be enough after losing to Stanford, which is inexcusable at this point in the season. Two wins and at least two more in the Pac Ten Tournament (maybe even reaching the Pac Ten finals) is needed.
Remaining Schedule : Oregon, Oregon State
Nice Wins: California, Arizona, Arizona State
Bad Losses: Oregon State, Seton Hall
Tennessee (18-10, 9-5): A lot of people are calling the Volunteers locks, but things are not that simple in Knoxville. Games against Florida and South Carolina won't be easy with at large bids on the line. It's very possible that 9 SEC wins could be enough as long as they don't lose early in the SEC Tournament.
Remaining Schedule : Florida, South Carolina, Alabama
Nice Wins: Siena, Georgetown, South Carolina, Florida (2)
Bad Losses: Auburn, Mississippi (also lost to Kentucky twice)
South Carolina (20-7, 9-5): I spent last night explaining how games against Vanderbilt and Georgia left South Carolina staring at 11 SEC wins at the minimum. Nobody expected Vanderbilt to whoop them, especially after South Carolina's murdered Kentucky on Wednesday. The profile is iffy now, even with wins over Florida and a sweep of Kentucky.
Remaining Schedule : Tennessee, Georgia
Nice Wins: Florida, Kentucky (2)
Bad Losses: Mississippi State, College of Charleston, Vanderbilt
Florida (21-8, 8-6): The Gators have feasted on a soft out of conference schedule and aside from beating Washington & South Carolina they have struggled to beat good teams. Florida missed chances to knock off Syracuse, Kentucky, and LSU. The Gators loss to Tennessee makes their chances of an at large look bleaker than ever.
Remaining Schedule : Mississippi State, Kentucky
Nice Wins: Washington, South Carolina
Bad Losses: Georgia (also lost to South Carolina, Kentucky, and Tennessee twice)
Kentucky (19-10, 8-6): Well, well, well what do we have here? I really can't figure out if this is a team that wants to go to the Big Dance or a team that is okay being the first UK team since 1991 to miss the NCAA Tournament altogether. Back to back losses to South Carolina & LSU have left the Wildcats in big need of two wins to close their season.
Remaining Schedule: LSU, Georgia, Florida
Nice Wins: Tennessee (2), Florida
Bad Losses: Mississippi State, Mississippi (lost both games to South Carolina)
BYU (22-6, 10-4): Another bubble team apparently wants to go dancing, and that team is BYU. The Cougars knocked off the only Mountain West team that was locked into the field, Utah on Saturday. Wyoming isn't an easy win but a win there paired with a win over Air Force would give BYU a 12-4 MWC record going into the MWC Tournament.
Remain ing Schedule: Wyoming, Air Force
Nice Wins: San Diego State, Utah
Bad Losses: None
New Mexico (20-10, 11-4): Wow. Go figure. I really don't know what to make of the Lobos anymore. They have wins over the MWC's other four beat teams (San Diego State, Utah, BYU, and UNLV) but they also have losses to UCF, Texas Tech, and UTEP. A win over Wyoming and a couple of wins in the MWC Tournament should get them in. Incredible.
Remaining Schedule: Wyoming
Nice Wins: BYU, UNLV, Utah, San Diego State
Bad Losses: UCF, Texas Tech, UTEP
San Diego State (19-8, 9-5): Knocking off TCU in overtime was really important for the Aztecs at large hopes. A win over Colorado State would set up a huge potential bubble elimination game between San Diego State & UNLV just a few nights before the start of the Mountain West Tournament.
Remaining Schedule : Colorado State, UNLV
Nice Wins: UNLV, Utah
Bad Losses: Wyoming
UNLV (20-8, 8-6): The Rebels have been one of the most disappointing teams in the country thsi year, but all is not lost. With four teams in the Mountain West with a chance to get to 10 conference wins (the maximum for UNLV) the Rebels probably need to win their remaning two and then at least one in the MWC Tournament to feel safe.
Remaining Schedule : Air Force, San Diego State
Nice Wins: Louisville, Utah, BYU, New Mexico
Bad Losses: Colorado State, Wyoming, TCU
Dayton (24-5, 10-4): The Flyers were in great shape before dropping back to back games to Saint Louis and Rhode Island. On Saturday their win over Temple got them back on track. If the Flyers can beat Xavier again this week then I don't see any way they get left out of the big dance.
Remaining Schedule : Xavier, Duquense
Nice Wins: Xavier, Marquette, Temple
Bad Losses: St. Louis, Charlotte, Massachusetts
Rhode Island (21-8, 10-4): The Rams just keep staying alive. Since starting the season 12-7 Rhode Island has won 9 of 10 games. The next two are very winnable (Duquense, Massachsetts) before the Atlantic Ten tournament. If they win their next two games they will avoid Xavier until the finals.
Remaining Schedule : Duquense, Massachusetts
Nice Wins: Dayton, Temple, Penn State
Bad Losses: Saint Josephs
Temple (17-11, 9-5): The Owls are probably going to need to win the Atlantic Ten Tournament to get into the Big Dance. The wins over Tennessee & Penn State look good on the resume but back to back losses to La Salle & Dayton have really affected their chances of getting an at large.
Remaining Schedule : Saint Josephs, George Washington
Nice Wins: Tennessee, Penn State
Bad Losses: Buffalo, Miami (OH), La Salle
UAB (20-9, 10-4): The Blazers really need to knock off Memphis to have any chance to get into the field, but that fell apart. They do have one more chance to knock off the Tigers, but it will likely be in the Conference USA Tournament final unless they fall to the #4 seed in the standings. In that scenario they'd meet the Tigers in the semifinals.
Remaining Schedule : East Carolina, UTEP, Marshall
Nice Wins: Arizona
Bad Losses: Tulsa, Houston
Siena (23-7, 16-2): For all intensive purposes losing to Niagara on Friday night pretty much ruined the Saints at large hopes, along with losing to Rider earlier this week. Siena should plan on winning the MAAC Tournament to claim a NCAA Tournament bid, unless a lot of other bubble teams start to fall apart.
Remaining Schedule : MAAC Tournament
Nice Wins: Northern Iowa
Bad Losses: Rider, Niagara
Creighton (25-6, 14-4): The Blue Jays are making a huge run towards the Big Dance. After a 5-4 start in conference play Creighton has now taken the lead in the Missouri Valley by winning ten straight games. Beating George Mason in the bracketbuster game was pretty much the capping of a nice profile. If Creighton loses in the MVC final they have a compelling case for an at large.
Remaining Schedule : Illinois State
Nice Wins: George Mason, Northern Iowa, Dayton
Bad Losses: Illinois State, Drake
Davidson (25-6, 18-2): The Wildcats knew their game with Butler was probably for their at large hope lives, and they lost. Grabbing an at large bid would mean the Wildcats had lost three Socon games this year, which is not really an achievement after the way they've run through the conference in past years. Davidson better win the Socon.
Remaining Schedule : Socon Tournament
Nice Wins: West Virginia
Bad Losses: The Citadel, College of Charleston
St. Marys (23-5, 9-4): The Gaels case is going to be one of the more interesting on Selection Sunday. Will the committee cut them some slack because they lost Patty Mills in a game against Gonzaga where they were in control at halftime? Or will three losses (including one in the WCC Tourney) to the Zags be the doom of them?
Remaining Schedule : Loyola-Marymount
Nice Wins: Utah State, Portland
Bad Losses: Santa Clara, UTEP
Utah State (26-4, 13-2): The Aggies loss to St. Marys in the bracketbusters really killed their at large mojo, and following it up with a loss to Nevada didn't really help the situation any. I will leave Utah State on the list due to their decent RPI and guady record, but unless they lose an incredibly competitive WAC final I think anything short of an auto won't be enough.
Remaining Schedule: Nevada, San Jose State
Nice Wins: Utah
Bad Losses: Boise State