We have almost made it, AAC fans. Just a few more days until the crazy end-of-season sprint when the league’s top teams will for the most part stop beating up on the bottom half of the standings and turn their sights directly on each other. We got a reminder of how much fun that could be on Saturday, when Connecticut got its third top 50 RPI win of the season by finishing off a season sweep of Memphis in overtime. With any luck, we’ll see a bunch of games of similar quality in the final 15 days of the AAC regular season beginning Saturday, when Cincinnati hosts Louisville.
Until then, we get five more top-half on bottom-half match-ups. We have been watching the growing disparity between the AAC haves and have nots since December, and Gary Parrish of CBS weighed in last week on how this vast quality chasm has boosted the top teams. For the most part it has, but over the weekend SMU dropped its second game of the year to a second-tier team, a loss at Temple to end a road trip hampered by northeast snow storms. The top half of the AAC – Cincinnati, Louisville, UConn, Memphis, and SMU – has lost just three games total to the rest of league, and SMU now has two of those losses. So are the Mustangs back on the bubble? Let’s analyze their chances, along with the rest of the AAC’s best.