Posted on: November 26, 2009 2:51 am
Edited on: November 26, 2009 3:23 am

Podcast Preview: Duke vs. Connecticut

It's not the best preview in the world, but we put together a Duke-Connecticut podcast preview. If you like the podcast let us know so that we can do more. My bracketology should be up tomorrow night (it's a holiday so I took a day offTongue out ) in updating the bracket.


Have a great Thanksgiving everyone!

Category: NCAAB
Tags: Connecticut, Duke
Posted on: March 29, 2009 8:44 pm
Edited on: March 29, 2009 8:46 pm

Your FIRST look at the Final Four

What is going to happen at the Final Four? I will give you my best thoughts as the best week progresses, but here's the first few things you may want to know about the four team teams at the Final Four:

Best Player at the Final Four: Ty Lawson
I actually think Lawson is the best player in the country (non Blake Griffin category). He sets up everything in North Carolina's offense and when he is playing well the Tar Heels are almost impossible to beat. Lawson is the key to a UNC championship. Don't be fooled by the hype for Tyler Hansbrough.

Notable Possible Rematch: North Carolina-Michigan State

The last time these two teams played was December 3rd and it was ironically at Ford Field. The Tar Heels won 98-63 behind Tyler Hansbrough's 23 points. After the game someone said "See you in April" to UNC head coach Roy Williams. He replied with "I will be back and I hope my team is with me." Well guess what Roy? They are.

Points Per Game in the Tournament:
North Carolina 88.75
Connecticut 87.25
Villanova 81
Michigan State 70.5

Points Allowed Per Game in the Tournament:
Michigsn State 61.25
Connecticut 62
North Carolina 66.25
Villanova 66.5

Threes Point %:
Michigan State 23-57 (40%)
North Carolina 27-70 (39%)
Connecticut 16-54 (30%)
Villanova 24-81 (30%)

Rebounds Per Game:
Connecticut 47.5
North Carolina 38.25
Villanova 36.5
Michigan State 34.5

Free Throw %:
Michigan State 65-82 (79%)
Villanova 86-112 (77%)
Connecticut 89-129 (69%)
North Carolina 64-95 (67%)

Turnovers Forced:
North Carolina 60
Villanova 54
Michigan State 48
Connecticut 41

North Carolina 43
Connecticut 48
Michigan State 49
Villanova 52

Wins by 5 or Less:
Michigan State 2
Villanova 1
Connecticut 0
North Carolina 0

Closest Winning Margin (in the tourney):
Villanova 2
Michigan State 5 (twice)
Connecticut 7
North Carolina 12

If you give a point for each stat (not counting the wins by five or less or winning margin) in a 4-3-2-1 format you end up with this:

Point System Totals:
North Carolina 21
Connecticut 18
Michigan State 18
Villanova 13

It's really interesting that the team that causes the most turnovers (North Carolina) also turns it over the least. Michigan State is the most efficient team offensively based off leading all four teams in 3PT% and FT% but they also score the least amount of PPG due to their slow it down type tempo. Also UNC hasn't even played a close game yet outside of the LSU game, where they pulled away late. I had the Tar Heels last April winning the national title this year and they are the team to beat this April. I won't reveal my picks just yet though.


Posted on: March 27, 2009 12:41 am

Mike Anderson FINALLY getting respect

Full article : http://onlinesportsfanatic.com/2009

It's about time Mike Anderson is getting some respect. He has completely turned around Missouri's basketball program by taking the Tigers from a forgotten Big 12 team to the Elite Eight.

His phyiscal style of play helped the Tigers dominate Memphis on Thursday night. Missouri scored 102 points, the most points ever given up by a John Calipari coached team.

I am exhausted so I'm not going into a long blog tonight but I do want to congratulate Villanova, Connecticut, Pittsburgh, and Missouri on advancing. Tomorrow night should be fun as well.

Posted on: February 28, 2009 11:59 pm
Edited on: March 1, 2009 12:15 am

Bubble Watch: After Saturday's Games

There were a few big bubble winners on Saturday night and a few big bubble survivors. Survivors include Penn State, who trailed late to Big Ten bottom dweller Indiana before coming back to capture its ninth conference win.

A couple of bubble teams missed out on big chances to solidify at large berths. Virginia Tech missed a big chances to knock off Duke on its home floor, Arizona failed to knock off Washington the road, and Kentucky lost to LSU in Lexington to drop yet another SEC game. California also missed a very big opportunity to defeat UCLA at home with the world watching and College Gameday in apperance.

Florida State was the only team that moved into lock status after today's games. The Seminoles win over Clemson was enough to wrap up a NCAA Tournament profile. BYU landed a large win over Mountain West leading Utah, while New Mexico was able to survive a double overtime marathon against Colorado State. One other big winner on Saturday was Oklahoma State, who took advantage of an opportunity to knock off Texas in Stillwater. Georgetown stayed alive by knocking off Villanova in Philadelphia.

Bubble losers included Notre Dame, Arizona (as already mentioned), and Kentucky (also already mentioned). The Fighting Irish had a chance to knock off the soon to be #1 Connecticut Huskies but fell late in the game.

All of these games have helped make the bubble picture clearer in some places and murkier in others. Let's break it down mathematically.

At Large Spots: 34
Locks: 26
Locks (minus teams projected to win conference tournament): 26-7=19
At Large Spots Remaining: 34-19=15

My math shows that I am projecting that 15 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:


Locks (5):

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, Wake Forest, 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 (17-10, 6-7): The Terps win over North Carolina was shocking, mainly because they had been blown out by good competition in most meetings this year. The victory tremendously helped Maryland because it brought wins they had early in the year over both Michigan and Michigan State back into the fray.

Remaning Schedule: N. C. State, Wake Forest, 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

Big East

Locks (5):

Providence (17-11, 9-7): 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. If Providence beats Rutgers (very likely) then they will have 10 Big East wins. That's important.

Remaining Schedule: Rutgers, Villanova
Nice Wins: Pittsburgh, Syracuse, Cincinnati (2),
Bad Losses: Northeastern, Baylor

Syracuse (20-8, 8-7): Orange fans are starting to feel uneasy after missing the NCAA Tiurnament the last two seasons, but let me do some re-assuring for just a second. I don't see how Syracuse can miss the Big Dance at this point unless they lose out. This is mainly for precausionary reasons.

Remaning Schedule: Cincinnati, Rutgers, Marquette
Nice Wins: Memphis, West Virginia, Kansas, Florida, Notre Dame
Bad Losses: Cleveland State,

West Virginia (19-9, 8-7): The Mountaineers great computer numbers have them within range to capture an at large bid (just like Syracuse). West Virginia's loss to Cincinnati on Thursday night wasn't exactly what they needed, but it didn't hurt them too bad just yet. Two of the last three are very winnable.

Remaning Schedule: South Florida, DePaul, Louisville
Nice Wins: Providence, Notre Dame, Ohio State
Bad Losses: None (did lose to Davidson & Kentucky though)

Cincinnati (18-10, 8-7): The Bearcats are looking for that gigantic win that pushes a resume over the top (like Providence over Pittsburgh). Beating West Virginia was nice but it wasn't the kind of win that gets you into the NCAA Tournament. Beating Syracuse on Sunday would probably do the trick.

Remaning Schedule: Syracuse, South Florida, Seton Hall
Nice Wins: UAB, UNLV, West Virginia, Georgetown
Bad Losses: None

Notre Dame (16-12, 7-9): Things are starting to look bleak again for the Fighting Irish. Coming into Saturday they had renewed hope after wins over Providence and Louisville had helped counter a seven game losing streak. Connecticut outlasted Notre Dame for the win on Saturday though, leaving ND's main hope relying on a 9-9 Big East record.

Remaning Schedule: Villanova, St. Johns
Nice Wins: Providence, Louisville, Georgetown, Texas
Bad Losses: St. Johns

Georgetown (15-12, 6-10): How many lives the do the Hoyas have? Every time they seem gone for dead they find a way to stay alive. On Saturday they knocked off Villanova to keep their chances of a miracle finish alive. Still wins over St. Johns and DePaul are absolutely necessary before a decent run in the Big East Tournament. The Hoyas have the #1 SOS.

Remaining Schedule: Villanova, St. Johns, DePaul
Nice Wins: Syracuse, Providence, Maryland, Memphis
Bad Losses: Seton Hall

Big Ten:

Locks (3):


Ohio State (18-9, 8-8): Ohio State has now lost four of five games to fall squarely back on the NCAA Tournament bubble. Winning out would give Ohio State a 10-8 Big Ten finish, which will probably be enough with the list of good wins they have. The problem is one of those games comes against pesky Northwestern, a team OSU has already lost to once.

Remaning Schedule: Iowa, 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 Indiana (hopefully not as ugly as last time) and a win over Indiana 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 (17-10, 8-7): 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. Before losing to Michigan State the Badgers have won five straight games to get back into relatively safe territory.

Remaning Schedule: Michigan, Minnesota, Indiana
Nice Wins: Ohio State, Penn State, Michigan, 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 (18-11, 8-8): 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. Nine Big Ten wins might be enough.

Remaining Schedule: Wisconsin, Minnesota
Nice Wins: Purdue, Minnesota, Duke, UCLA, Illinois
Bad Losses: Iowa


Big 12

Locks (4):


Kansas State (20-9, 8-6): The Wildcats are quietly very alive in the bubble picture. Kansas State knocked off Nebraska on Saturday and moved farther towards an at large bid. The next two games against Oklahoma State and Colorado are going to be must wins for Kansas State to get an at large. The downside is they defeated nobody of importance outside of conference.

Remaining Schedule: Oklahoma State, Colorado
Nice Wins: Texas
Bad Losses: Baylor, Nebraska, Oregon, Iowa

Oklahoma State (19-9, 8-6): Finally the Cowboys won an eye opening game to back up their fantastic computer numbers. I'm not sure if Texas knows what hit them. The Cowboys have a huge bubble game against Kansas State next week before finishing with a chance to add a huge win to their resume versus rival Oklahoma.

Remaning Schedule : Kansas State, Oklahoma
Nice Wins: Siena, Nebraska, Texas A&M
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


Pac 10

Locks (3):


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: None (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



Locks (1):


Tennessee (17-10, 8-5): 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
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 (21-7, 8-5): 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 both Syracuse, Kentucky, and LSU. Their remaining games against Tennesee and Kentucky are huge.

Remaining Schedule : Tennessee, Mississippi State, Kentucky
Nice Wins: Washington, South Carolina
Bad Losses: Georgia

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


Mountain West

Locks (1):

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 (19-10, 10-4):  Somehow the Lobos keep getting forgotten in all of this bubble talk although they are in a tie for second place in the conference. New Mexico came from behind to knock off Colorado State in double overtime, setting up a huge game with Utah.

Remaining Schedule: Colorado State, Utah, Wyoming
Nice Wins: BYU, UNLV
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



Locks (4):


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 (22-7, 15-2):  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 : Canisius
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 (24-6, 17-2): 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 : Georgia Southern, Elon
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




Posted on: February 9, 2009 11:26 pm
Edited on: February 10, 2009 12:12 am

Dantheman's Power 16: Uconn is #1

I've actually held off from posting this lately due to CBS' picture editor being messed up. I'm just tired of waiting so here's the new power 16:

1. Connecticut Huskies (22-1) : The Huskies lone loss was to Georgetown, but I think the Huskies got the upper hand in the loss. How? Since that loss Connecticut is 11-0 with wins over Louisville, Michigan, and West Virginia. Georgetown is 3-8 with losses to Seton Hall, Cincinnati, and Notre Dame.  Thanks Georgetown?

2. North Carolina Tar Heels (21-2): This is ridiculous isn't it? How is a two loss North Carolina ranked above a one loss Oklahoma? The Tar Heels have won seven straight games and has wins at Florida State & Michigan State. OU has not proven to me that they can win on the road just yet.

3. Oklahoma Sooners (23-1): Speaking of the Sooners, does anyone realize they haven't even PLAYED a top 25 team on the road just yet? Outside of Missouri, which may or may not be ranked by March 4th (my birthday) the Sooners don't have a single road game against a ranked team ahead of them either. I'm not taking anything away from OU, but winning on the road is just part of college basketball. In the NCAA Tournament you have to win games outside of the friendly confines of Norman, Oklahoma.

4. Pittsburgh Panthers (22-2): The Panthers just keep winning and honestly they appear to be one of the most well rounded teams in the entire country. Is it possible that a team ranked in the top five isn't getting enough national attention?

5. Duke Blue Devils (20-3): Number five!? How dare he? Why is Duke #5? Mainly because Duke has wins over Purdue, Michigan, Virginia Tech, Florida State, and Miami FL which are all tournament teams in my latest projection. The game against North Carolina will show whether or not Duke is ready for the big stage.

6. Michigan State Spartans (19-4): The Big Ten is loaded with NCAA Tournament teams, but there's only one most agree can actually win the national championship. Michigan State is that team. The Spartans have wins over Minnesota, Ohio State (won twice), Kansas, Penn State, and Illinois since January.

7. Louisville Cardinals (18-4): The Cardinals have rebounded very well since their rocky start. At 9-1 their lone loss in Big East play is to #1 Connecticut, which is pretty impressive. Regardless of seeding (1, 2, 3, or 4) nobody wants to play this team in the NCAA Tournament.

8. Wake Forest Demon Deacons (18-3): The recent losses are discouraging but this stat still holds true. The Demon Deacons have wins over Clemson, Duke, and North Carolina this season, which is a very nice profile.

9. Memphis Tigers (20-3): I was more critical of Memphis than any other team I've seen this season earlier in the year. Now I am slowly coming around on this multi talented team. Still not a believer in Memphis? They have 14 straight wins and 50 straight Conference USA wins in a row.

10. UCLA Bruins (19-4): The Bruins are 8-2 in Pac 10 play, which is good enough for first place.  Since their loss to Washington UCLA has won four straight games including their blowout win over Notre Dame on Saturday.

11. Marquette Golden Eagles (20-3): A lot people think the loss to South Florida showed the true identity of this Marquette team. I disagree. What will show their true identity is how they bounce back. Going to Villanova won't be easy coming off of their first Big East loss.

12. Clemson Tigers (19-3): The Tigers are a team I go back and forth on. How good are they? Well they beat Duke by 27 before allowing Florida State to come back from 19 points down for a win on Saturday.

13. Xavier Musketeers (20-3): Why is everyone so shocked by Xavier's loss to Duquense? The Musketeers make it easy to run through the A-10 like it's easy, but it's a lot harder than people think.

14. Villanova Wildcats (19-4): The Wildcats have won five straight games, a stretch where they have won games over Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, and Providence. Their NCAA Tournament seed keeps rising higher and higher.

15. Missouri Tigers (21-4): What a comeback for Missouri to knock off Kansas in the Border War. The Tigers are for real and I called it in the preseason. I'm proud of that. Mike Anderson is one of the most under-appreciated coaches in the entire country.

16. Butler Bulldogs (21-2): The Horizon League isn't take it easy on Butler, but the Bulldogs keep taking the poundings and aside from the loss to UW-GB they keep winning. I can't figure out if the selection commitee is going to give a top 20 ranked Butler team a low seed like it did last season, or whether they will get more credit this time around.

Posted on: February 2, 2009 11:51 pm
Edited on: February 3, 2009 12:30 am

CBB Nightly: Uconn wins, Butler & Baylor lose

For everyone that thought Connecticut's time atop the rankings would be short lived, well think again. The Huskies dispatched of #7 Louisville, red hot Louisville at that, easily on Monday night in Freedom Hall.

Elsewhere Baylor lost to Kansas at home and fell to 3-5 in Big 12 play. #11 Butler lost to Wisconsin Green Bay, ending their huge Horizon league winning streak.

Here's a nightly breakdown:

What Connecticut's Win Means: it means that Connecticut will stay atop the polls and that the Huskies are now the favorites in the crowded Big East. Connecticut will also remain a #1 seed in any bracketology you see before their next game.

What Louisville's Loss Means: The Cardinals now have a tougher road for a potential #1 seed, which now isn't likely to happen without another long winning streak and a Big East Tournament title. Right now Lousville looks like a 2 or 3 seed.

What Butler's Loss Means: The Bulldogs now fall from their #11 ranking and stay about where they were in my bracketology. I had them listed as a 7 seed because I remember how the committee under-seeded them last season. The loss isn't as bad as it looks because Wisconsin-Green Bay is a lot better than they get credit for.

What Baylor's Loss Means: Goodbye at large bid (for now). Baylor would fall out of my bracketology if I did it tonight with a 3-5 Big 12 record. Baylor will have plenty of chances to play their way back into the field though.

What Kansas Win Means: The Jayhawks continue to keep their unbeaten Big 12 mark going and they continue to look like a top four seed in the NCAA Tournament.



Other college basketball news from Monday

I've already had my say on Bob Knight going to Georgia, check it out here .

The bracketbuster matchups are also finished, and after an extensive search this is the only list of them on the net .

Apparently the people have spoken and Penn State SHOULD be in the NCAA Tournament.

Also apprently Maryland head coach, Gary Williams, job is safe. More on that tomorrow.


Remember this blog is for YOU guys. I want YOUR input so to make sure I get it I've created a few things so that I can encourage your help. My mailbag is a weekly (maybe twice a week at times) segment I am doing where I will answer any college basketball questions. The "thoughts" section is to get a feel of what games you think are important and who you think will win.


MAILBAG: Send your questions for next week's mailbag either by PM or to my email .

YOUR THOUGHTS: Tonight I want your thoughts on tomorrow's games. Which game are you most looking forward to watching?

-Daniel Evans

Category: NCAAB
Posted on: January 30, 2009 11:38 pm
Edited on: January 30, 2009 11:54 pm

Complete Preview of Saturday's College B-ball

It's the time of the year that most of wait for. Bubbles are about to start popping everywhere, and on Saturday we see the first real glimpse of what we can truly call bubble games. Sure, we have seen some bubble games since the season started in November, but none of those games were "official" bubble contests. Now we can officially break games down into a couple of different categories. Gary Parrish does a fantastic job with his "Friday Look Ahead" article to preview each weekend, but I have a different style.

Like I said there are going to be three categories. "Bubble Games", "Seeding Games", and "Best of Both Worlds Games". I think these are self explanatory but for those that aren't the brightest crayon in the box I will give a quick rundown.

Bubble Games: Games where at least one of the two teams playing is on the bubble and in need of a big victory
Seeding Games: Games where both teams are considered NCAA Tournament locks
Best of Both Worlds Games: Games where a team is locked in and playing for a higher seed against a potential bubble team

There aren't any "Seeding games" this week because I only have a few locks right now. Unfortunately none of those locks are palying each other on Saturday. Here's my complete breakdown of the entire weekend:

Bubble Games:

Washington State at Arizona: Who wants to stay alive? Apparently both of these teams are working hard towards getting into the Big Dance after both pulled large upsets off on Thursday night. Arizona followed up a 10 point comeback against Houston with a win against Washington. I devoted most of last night's blog to the Wildcats. A win here would put them back within the last eight teams in/out of the dance right now. Pick: Arizona

Michigan at Purdue: No disrespect to Purdue, but I'm not ready to call them a lock just yet. Michigan is not playing well. A 10-3 start has turned into a 14-7 record overall and a 4-5 conference record. A loss here would make their climb back into my bracketology even tougher. A win would get them back in, thanks to wins over UCLA & Duke out of conference. Pick: Purdue

Oklahoma State at Texas A&M: One of these teams is probably going to the NCAA Tournament, and this game will probably be mentioned a few times on Selection Sunday. Oklahoma State (RPI: 27, SOS: 7) has the edge in the computers over the Aggies (RPI: 43, SOS; 75). Expect Texas A&M to pick up a big win at home. Pick: Texas A&M

South Carolina at Kentucky: Big time SEC East battle (along with UF-UT) that will help decide who gets into the NCAA Tournament. Barring a huge collapse the Wildcats are going to be in the field of 65 in March. The question is whether or not South Carolina will be. The Gamecocks have a huge win over Florida at the buzzer to hang their hats on already (as well as one over Baylor), but a win in Lexington would be their most impressive so far. Pick: Kentucky

 Arkansas at LSU: After pulling off back to back wins over Texas & Oklahoma the Razorbacks lost four straight SEC games, but rebounded with a win over Alabama. Meanwhile LSU is 4-1 in the SEC West and on the bubble. Arkansas is just hoping a few wins will get them back to playing meaningful games in February. Pick: LSU

Washington at Arizona State: The Huskies loss to Arizona sent shockwaves around the Pac 10. Washington had been the most consistent team in the conference up until the loss. Arizona State also fell on Thursday, but is still in pretty good shape to get into the NCAA Tournament as well. If you need a goofy reason to watch then I have one. These two teams are #29 & #30 in the RPI. Pick: Arizona State

Baylor at Missouri: Mike Anderson won't talk about the job opening at Alabama because he knows his Missouri Tigers are quietly playing some good basketball. Both of these teams would be in the NCAA Tournament if it started today, but neither are locks at this point.  Baylor is in better shape with a SOS of 15, although Missouri does have a better conference record. Pick: Missouri

Florida at Tennessee: The Gators-Volunteers matchup is one of the best rivalries in the SEC. I actually read on a Tennessee forum earlier today where Volunteer fans were calling Dan Werner a "dirty" player. Whether that's true or not a lot will be on the line in Knoxville on Saturday night. Both teams need a big win to add to the resume. Pick: Florida

Miami at Maryland: How about these two ACC teams? Both have had up and down seasons, but a loss here would be very costly. Both teams have four losses in conference play already and both are very much on the bubble. Gary Williams is on the hot seat, and he's not making things easier for himself after running his mouth a little this week. Plus his team lost by a gagillion to Duke last week. Well almost that much. Pick: Miami

Wisconsin at Northwestern: Jerry Palm has even went as far as to say the Wildcats are headed towards the NCAA Tournament this season for the first time ever. The loser of this one is going to need a miarcle to climb back onto the bubble. I will take Northwestern at home, a place they've proven is very tough for road teams to win at. Pick: Northwestern

Virginia Tech at Boston College: The Hokies blew a game they probably should have won against Clemson on Wednesday. Meanwhile Boston College has struggled since their win over North Carolina. Tyrese Rice might be the best player on the court but the Hokies need a big win to keep pace in the ACC. They also have the better team on paper. Pick: Virginia Tech

California at USC: This is a big time Pac 10 bubble game. USC is coming off a win over Stanford but California has been one of the biggest surprises this season. I have to go with the Golden Bears, although playing at USC is not easy. A California win should keep their seed on the top six seed lines (which is a safe place to be right now) while a loss would push them directly towards the cutline. Pick: California


Seeding Games:

This week, due to it only being early January, there are not any "seeding" games between top teams.


Best of Both World Games:

West Virginia at Louisville: This is a great example of a "best of both worlds game" where the Mountaineers need to keep winning to stay ahead of other Big East bubble teams, and the Cardinals need to win to keep pushing towards a potential #1 seed in the NCAA Tournament. Nobody in the country is playing better basketball than Louisville right now. PicK: Louisville

Notre Dame at Pittsburgh (upset special): Notre Dame has lost four in a row and their reward is playing a Pittsburgh team that is angry after losing against Villanova on Wednesday. If the Irish lose and fall to 3-6 in Big East play their NCAA Tournament hopes will take a large blow. This may just be a hunch, but I think Notre Dame finally finds a way to win a Big East game on the road. Pick: Notre Dame

Georgetown at Marquette: Does anybody notice the Big East theme here yet? Who would've thought a little over a month ago that Marquette would be the team practically locked into the Big Dance (at this point) while Georgetown was struggling at 11th in the Big East standings. Just like Notre Dame's road game at Pittsburgh is a must have, this one is also a must win for the Hoyas. Pick: Georgetown

Stanford at UCLA: UCLA has proven to me that they are the Pac 10's best team by staying steady while the teams around them have faltered. Stanford is one of those teams. Since a 10-0 start the Cardinal have now lost five of eight to fall to 13-5. A win here puts them right back into the mix but a loss brings them closer to being out of at large consideration. Pick: UCLA

Providence at Connecticut: Everyone is sleeping on Providence, and believe me, you will not hear any complaining from the Friars. Let them sneak into the NCAA Tournament unnoticed, they won't complain one bit. A win here would ruin that plan though, but start a push towards the NCAA Tournament. How many wins is it going to take in the Big East? A win here would give them a 7-2 conference record. Connecticut is eyeing their first #1 ranking this year, so it will be tough sledding for the Friars. Pick: Connecticut


NOTES: If you see any mistakes its because I'm dead tired. I honestly don't feel very good.

I tried to add logos but it didn't work for some reason. The logos showed up but tonight they didn't want to left align or change size.


LIVE BLOG: Tomorrow I am planning on doing a LIVE COLLEGE BASKETBALL SATURDAY BLOG. In order to do this I need questions, comments, and ideas from you guys. Email me here tonight and throughout tomorrow and give me a good question. Please list your first name (and last if you want), your hometown, and your question/comment.

-Daniel Evans

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com