The RTC Podblast: Selection Sunday Reactions Edition

Posted by rtmsf on March 16th, 2014

There wasn’t a whole lot of controversy this year, but several decisions by the NCAA Selection Committee certainly raised some eyebrows. In an effort to briefly hit on a few of those points in the hours immediately following the bracket’s release this evening, the RTC Podblast crew, hosted by Shane Connolly (@sconnolly114) walked through a few quick n’ dirty reactions. The guys will return with detailed analyses of each of the four regions on Tuesday, followed by a number of quick-hit podblasts throughout the rest of the week. Make sure to add the RTC Podcast to your iTunes lineup so that you’ll automatically upload it on your listening device after we record. The full rundown is below.

  • 0:00-4:55 – Initial Bracket Reactions/The Questionable Louisville Seeding
  • 4:55- 6:02 – Other Bracket Surprises
  • 6:02-6:53 – Teams With the Easiest Roads
  • 6:53-8:33 – Regions Stacked With Talent
  • 8:33-11:34 – Takeaways From Conference Tournaments Heading Into the Big Dance
  • 11:34-12:25 – Virginia Gets Final #1 Seed
  • 12:25-13:41 – Lower Seeds That Can Make a Run
  • 13:41-15:30 – Upset Possibilities
  • 15:30- Previewing The Week in RTC’s Coverage of March Madness (Bracket Nonsense, etc.)
Share this story

RTC Bracketology: Selection Sunday Final Edition

Posted by Daniel Evans (@bracketexpert) on March 16th, 2014

Daniel Evans (@bracketexpert) is Rush the Court’s resident bracketologist. He will update his brackets at least twice a week through the rest of the regular season here at RTC, but his updated brackets can be viewed daily at Bracketology Expert. As we approach March Madness, he’ll also provide occasional blind resumes. Evans has been ranked by the Bracket Matrix as the nation’s 11th-best bracketologist out of hundreds of entries.

I promised myself last year that I would learn from picking Tennessee over Middle Tennessee for the final spot in the bracket. The committee always throws in a surprise mid-major at the end. It’s been UAB, Iona, and Middle Tennessee since the field expanded to 68 teams. This year it’s going to be Green Bay. I’d rather go down learning from history than to be wrong again. SMU, a team many people have as a “lock” is the team I’ve removed from the field.

First Four Out: Florida State, SMU, Southern Miss, N. C. State

SS_bracketFINAl2

Share this story

RTC Bracketology: Selection Sunday AM Edition

Posted by Daniel Evans (@bracketexpert) on March 16th, 2014

Daniel Evans (@bracketexpert) is Rush the Court’s resident bracketologist. He will update his brackets at least twice a week through the rest of the regular season here at RTC, but his updated brackets can be viewed daily at Bracketology Expert. As we approach March Madness, he’ll also provide occasional blind resumes. Evans has been ranked by the Bracket Matrix as the nation’s 11th-best bracketologist out of hundreds of entries.

It’s Selection Sunday! My final bracket will be posted at some point this afternoon, so stay tuned. It should look a lot like the one below, but I expect to make a few tweaks to the bottom of the bracket as I debate the final few bubble teams.

The NCAA Tournament Picture (full bracket after the jump)

  • NCAA Tournament Locks (38): Arizona, Florida, Syracuse, Wisconsin, Kansas, Duke, Villanova, Virginia, Creighton, Michigan, San Diego State, Iowa State, Michigan State, Louisville, North Carolina, Saint Louis, Cincinnati, UCLA, Texas, Oklahoma, Connecticut, Kansas State, VCU, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Iowa, Ohio State, George Washington, Memphis, Arizona State, New Mexico, Oregon, Baylor, Oklahoma State, Colorado, Stanford, Pittsburgh, Saint Joseph’s
  • Clinched NCAA Tournament Auto-Bids (27): Harvard (Ivy), Eastern Kentucky (OVC), Wichita State (MVC), Mercer (ASun), Coastal Carolina (Big South), Manhattan (MAAC), Wofford (SOCON), Milwaukee (Horizon), Mount St. Mary’s (NEC), North Dakota State (Summit), Gonzaga (WCC), Delaware (CAA), American (Patriot), Albany (America East), Tulsa (Conference USA), Louisville (American), Weber State (Big Sky), Providence (Big East), Cal Poly (Big West), Western Michigan (MAC), NC Central (MEAC), New Mexico (Mountain West), UCLA (Pac-12), Stephen F. Austin (Southland), Texas Southern (SWAC), New Mexico State (WAC)

Since 68 teams make the NCAA Tournament, that leaves us with 7 spots remaining for bubble teams. Now, let’s take a look at the bubble:

Projected Bubble Spots Left: 6

  • Probably In (3): Nebraska, Dayton, Xavier
  • Bubble In (3):  SMU, Tennessee, BYU
  • Bubble Out: Green Bay, Florida State, Southern Miss, N. C. State, Minnesota, Arkansas, California, Belmont, Missouri, Toledo, Louisiana Tech, Georgia, St. John’s

The Projected NCAA Tournament Field (Selection Sunday at 2:59 A.M. CT)

Read the rest of this entry »

Share this story

RTC Bracketology: March 10 Edition

Posted by Daniel Evans on March 10th, 2014

Daniel Evans (@bracketexpert) is Rush the Court’s resident bracketologist. He will update his brackets at least twice a week through the rest of the regular season here at RTC, but his updated brackets can be viewed daily at Bracketology Expert. As we approach March Madness, he’ll also provide occasional blind resumes. Evans has been ranked by the Bracket Matrix as the nation’s 11th-best bracketologist out of hundreds of entries.

It’s the best week of the year as we all count down the hours to Selection Sunday. It may take every minute to figure out this field, which continues to produce loops with some of the stunning losses we’ve seen over the last few weeks. On Sunday alone, two potential No. 1 seeds lost  following a Saturday when Kansas and Arizona lost. One quick note for this bracket: Wisconsin’s loss to Nebraska on Sunday night moved the Badgers off of the No. 1 seed line. Villanova is now the final No. 1 seed and I believe firmly that if the bracket was released today, the Wildcats would join FloridaWichita State and Arizona on the top line. For the first time in over a month of bracketing, I feel like those four teams are relatively clear-cut choices on the top line, but over the next six days that is certain to change. The Gators and Shockers are locked in as No. 1s but Arizona and Villanova could still make things interesting in conference tournament play. Meanwhile, the Badgers loss was Nebraska’s gain. The Cornhuskers jumped up to a No. 10 seed in this bracket and will likely end up in the No. 10-12 range on Selection Sunday.

The NCAA Tournament Picture (full bracket below)

  • NCAA Tournament Locks (36): Arizona, Florida, Wichita State, Syracuse, Wisconsin, Kansas, Duke, Villanova, Virginia, Creighton, Michigan, San Diego State, Iowa State, Michigan State, Louisville, North Carolina, Saint Louis, Cincinnati, UCLA, Texas, Oklahoma, Connecticut, Kansas State, VCU, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Iowa, Ohio State, George Washington, Memphis, Arizona State, New Mexico, Oregon, Baylor, SMU, Oklahoma State
  • NCAA Tournament Auto-Bids (5): Harvard (Ivy), Eastern Kentucky (OVC), Wichita State (MVC), Mercer (A-Sun), Coastal Carolina (Big South)

The Bubble Picture

  • Projected Bubble Spots Left: 10
  • Bubble In (10): Colorado, Stanford, Nebraska, Saint Joseph’s, Dayton, Xavier, California, Pittsburgh, Minnesota, Tennessee
  • Bubble Out: BYU, Arkansas, Georgetown, Providence, Green Bay, Florida State, St. John’s, Belmont, Missouri, Indiana, West Virginia

Potential Bid Thieves Left (70)

  • American (5): Houston, Rutgers, UCF, Temple, South Florida
  • ACC (10): Clemson, N. C. State, Florida State, Maryland, Miami (FL), Wake Forest, Georgia Tech, Notre Dame, Boston College, Virginia Tech
  • A-10 (9): Dayton, St. Joseph’s, Richmond, La Salle, St. Bonaventure, Rhode Island, Duquesne, George Mason, Fordham
  • Big East (8): St. John’s, Xavier, Marquette, Georgetown, Seton Hall, Butler, DePaul, Providence
  • Big 12 (3): West Virginia, Texas Tech, TCU
  • Big Ten (6): Minnesota, Illinois, Indiana, Penn State, Northwestern, Purdue
  • Mountain West (9): UNLV, Nevada, Boise State, Wyoming, Fresno State, Utah State, Colorado State, Air Force, San Jose State
  • Pac-12 (5): Utah, Washington, Oregon State, Washington State, USC
  • SEC (12): Georgia, Tennessee, Arkansas, Missouri, LSU, Ole Miss, Texas A&M, Vanderbilt, Alabama, Auburn, South Carolina, Mississippi State
  • WCC (3): BYU, San Francisco, St. Mary’s

The NIT Picture

  • There will be more to come on the NIT bracketology front as this week progresses, so stay tuned. I’ll likely also try to throw together CBI and CIT fields.
  • Clinched NIT Bids (5): Belmont (OVC), Florida Gulf Coast (A-Sun), Davidson (SoCon), Vermont (America East), Green Bay (Horizon)

The Projected NCAA Tournament Field (March 10, 2014 at 10:13 AM CT)

Read the rest of this entry »

Share this story

RTC Bracketology: March 9 Edition

Posted by Daniel Evans on March 9th, 2014

Daniel Evans (@bracketexpert) is Rush the Court’s resident bracketologist. He will update his brackets at least twice a week through the rest of the regular season here at RTC, but his updated brackets can be viewed daily at Bracketology Expert. As we approach March Madness, he’ll also provide occasional blind resumes. Evans has been ranked by the Bracket Matrix as the nation’s 11th-best bracketologist out of hundreds of entries. 

Here are quick thoughts and notes following Saturday’s games:

Lock them up: Florida is now guaranteed a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament, regardless of what happens in the SEC Tournament. The Gators pummeled Kentucky and then watched two other No. 1 seed contenders, Kansas and Arizona, lose. If the field was selected today, Florida would be the No. 1 overall seed and the only way that will change is if the Gators lose in the SEC Tournament. But, one thing is not going to change: The Gators will be on the top line. Wichita State is also locked into a No. 1 seed after reaching the Missouri Valley championship game.

florida 18-0 sec

The Gators Will Be a #1 Seed Next Sunday

Teams in the running for a No. 1 seed: Kansas lost to West Virginia by six and Arizona lost at Oregon, creating chaos on the top line. I already had Wisconsin on the No. 1 line before Kansas’ loss and I expect other bracketology experts to move the Badgers up now, barring a loss at needy Nebraska Sunday night. Villanova and Syracuse are also in play for a top seed after Virginia’s defeat at Maryland today.

Green Bay very much alive: I always feel awful for at least one mid-major team that dominates its conference all season and then gets swept away in the conference tournament, losing to a team its already proven it’s better than. Well, this year’s team has already identified itself: Green Bay. The Phoenix lost to Milwaukee Saturday night and now will sweat out Selection Sunday. For those who think Green Bay’s chances of getting a bid are slim to none, think again. Remember the first year of the 68-team field when UAB was picked out of Conference USA despite losing in the first round of the CUSA Tournament to East Carolina? Or last season, when a Middle Tennessee team without a single top 100 win, made the field? The Pheonix have a top 100 win, and actually, they have four. They also have a TOP 10 RPI win over Virginia, a team the rest of the ACC has only defeated twice. I’m not saying Green Bay is getting a bid – not at this point, with so much still to be determined — but they will be one of the last teams in or out next Sunday. The committee has shown over and over again since the field expanded that it will use an average of two of last few spots for mid-majors. This is a weaker year for mid-majors than any other year since the field went to 68 teams, but that doesn’t mean the committee will act differently.

Read the rest of this entry »

Share this story

RTC Bracketology: March 8 Edition

Posted by Daniel Evans on March 8th, 2014

Daniel Evans (@bracketexpert) is Rush the Court’s resident bracketologist. He will update his brackets at least twice a week through the rest of the regular season here at RTC, but his updated brackets can be viewed daily at Bracketology Expert. As we approach March Madness, he’ll also provide occasional blind resumes. Evans has been ranked by the Bracket Matrix as the nation’s 11th-best bracketologist out of hundreds of entries. 

This is a quick update to the March 3 field. Remember, this weekend we are awarding automatic bids. The race for the final No. 1 seed is heating  up and will come down to conference tournament play over the last few days of the season. For now, my final No. 1 seed is Wisconsin and I believe that if the Badgers win the Big Ten Tournament, they are likely be on the No. 1 line.

Kansas, Virginia and Villanova also have strong cases. Like I wrote in my last update, I think Florida, Arizona and Wichita State are pretty much locks to be No. 1 seeds. The only way I can see that changing is if Florida loses to Kentucky and again in the SEC Tournament, Arizona follows suit, and Wichita State loses in the MVC Tournament. Plus at least two teams from the Wisconsin, Kansas,Virginia and Villanova group would need to win their conference tournaments. That would really make things interesting. I’ve never missed a No. 1 seed and don’t plan to start this year, so I’m honestly hoping that last scenario does not happen.

First Four Out: Tennessee, Missouri, BYU, Providence

bracketmarch8

Share this story

RTC Bracketology: March 3 Edition

Posted by Daniel Evans on March 3rd, 2014

Selection Sunday is almost here and the field is starting to take shape. Everything will obviously clear up a lot more when conference tournaments get underway this week and next as teams play themselves into and out of the 68-team field. This time of the year is like a whirlwind, though. It’s hard to keep up with all of it because there are still so many things we do not know. But if we focus on what we do know, things get a lot easier. Let’s do that with today’s RTC Bracketology.

  • Unless  something unbelievable happens down the stretch, Wichita State is going to get a No. 1 seed. The Shockers are basically a lock for the top line and Florida and Arizona are very close to it as well. I think if the Gators and Wildcats win both of their games this week, they will be No. 1 seeds regardless of what happens in their conference tournaments. This is the clearest the top line of the bracket has ever been at this point. Of course, losses by the Shockers, Gators and Wildcats in the next  two weeks would muddy that picture, but let’s count those three teams as No. 1 seed locks at this point.
  • The fight for the fourth No. 1 seed is insane. I wrote a couple of weeks ago about the possibility of Wisconsin earning the final No. 1 seed, and as of today, I think the Badgers have the nation’s fourth-best profile. For now, I’m leaving Syracuse on the top line, because that’s what I think the Selection Committee would do, but in my opinion, both Kansas and Wisconsin have better resumes. We know that the fight for the last No. 1 seed is really unclear right now, because there are so many teams still alive for it: Syracuse, Wisconsin, Kansas, Villanova, Duke, Virginia, Michigan, Creighton, and and San Diego State. Obviously some of those teams are long shots.
  • The bottom of the bracket is a complete mess. Arkansas moves in with a sweep over Kentucky, and Tennessee hangs on to the last spot in, which gives the SEC a surprising four teams. It’s still very possible that both the Hawgs and Vols could miss the field, leaving the conference with only two teams playing in the NCAAs. I will say this, though: Tennessee was the only team I got incorrect last year. I picked the Vols over Middle Tennessee last season, and although that won’t factor into the decision on my final field of 68, I won’t be too happy if Cuonzo Martin’s team costs me  a perfect field again. Luckily, there is still a lot of basketball to be played before a final field is seeded.
  • I’ve got 32 locks at  this point. I realize some other websites are more patient on their locks, but there are only 13 days left until Selection Sunday. It’s time to lock teams up. Here are the teams I have locked in the field right now: Arizona, Florida, Wichita State, Syracuse, Wisconsin, Kansas, Duke, Villanova, Virginia, Creighton, Michigan, San Diego State, Iowa State, Michigan State, Louisville, North Carolina, Saint Louis, Cincinnati, UCLA, Texas, Oklahoma, Connecticut, Kansas State, VCU, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Iowa, Ohio State, George Washington, Memphis, Arizona State  and New Mexico.
  • Teams moving down the seed list in a hurry this week include Michigan State, which lost at home Saturday to Illinois, and Kentucky, which lost at South Carolina. Ohio State is also on the decline after a loss to Indiana on Sunday.

Bids by Conference: Big 12 (7), Big Ten (6), Pac-12 (6), Atlantic 10 (6), ACC (5), AAC (5) SEC (4), Big East (4), Mountain West (2).
First Four Out: Providence, Missouri, BYU, Oregon

Complete bracket after the jump:

Read the rest of this entry »

Share this story

Devil’s Advocate: Duke May Still Deserve a #1 Seed

Posted by EMann on March 17th, 2013

Ethan Mann is a writer for the ACC microsite. He can be reached at emann970@gmail.com.

Even taking into consideration that Miami won both the ACC regular season and conference tournaments and the fact that Duke lost on Quarterfinal Friday to a Maryland team that almost certainly will not make the NCAA Tournament, Duke still has a very strong case for a #1 seed despite what many analysts are saying. Yes, Miami, if they do not receive a #1 seed, will become the first team in the history of the ACC not to get a top-line seed after winning both the regular season and the tournament. It might be another story if Miami had knocked off Duke on the way to the ACC title, but defeating a #7-#8 seed North Carolina team in the finals for the third time does little (sans the “conference champion” label) to improve their profile. It seems a bit insane that Duke could be dropped from the overall #1 seed, as many analysts projected after their win against North Carolina last Saturday, all the way to the #2 line based on just this weekend’s results. Duke is ranked #1 in the RPI, has lost only once with Ryan Kelly in the lineup, and has no truly bad losses. At this point, through an objective analysis, the only team to consider as a lock for the top line is Louisville. Since the committee does not consider “regular season championships” or “conference tournament championships” nearly as much (or at all) in comparison to overall body of work, taking a look at all of the contenders for the #1 seeds yields these profiles:

Miami won the ACC Tournament, but did beating North Carolina, rather than Duke, really earn the 'Canes a #1 seed?  (USA Today)

Miami won the ACC Tournament, but did beating North Carolina, rather than Duke, really earn the ‘Canes a #1 seed? (USA Today)

Duke (RPI #1)

  • 27-5 (14-4, 14-5 including tournament)
  • Record against the RPI Top 25:  6-1 (Wins-Louisville [BE Champion], Miami [ACC Champion], Ohio State [potential B1G Champion], North Carolina x2, VCU, Losses-at Miami)
  • Record against the RPI 26-50:  3-1 (Wins-NC State, Minnesota, Temple, Losses-at NC State)
  • Record against the RPI 51-100:  5-3 (Wins-Kentucky, Davidson, Maryland, Florida State, FGCU, Losses-Maryland x2, at Virginia)
  • Record against the RPI 101+:  13-0

Read the rest of this entry »

Share this story

RTC Bracketology: March 1 Edition

Posted by Daniel Evans on March 1st, 2013

bracketology

Daniel Evans (@bracketexpert) is RTC’s new resident bracketologist. According to Bracket Matrix, he ranks as one of the top bracketologists among those who have produced brackets for more than three years, including two seasons with perfect bracket projections. He updates the field daily on his site, Bracketology Expert, and will be producing a weekly bracket update here at RTC on Fridays. RTC Bubble Watch will publish on Sunday nights and Thursday afternoons for the rest of the season.

New in This Update:

  • After a big win over Duke on Thursday night, I have Virginia in my field for the first time all season  It is now time to forgive a team that lost three games early to CAA opponents. The Cavaliers have wins over Wisconsin, North Carolina, and North Carolina State to go along with their win over the Blue Devils. Virginia is now a #10 seed in my field.
  • The other team that rocketed into my field over the past week was Tennessee. The Volunteers’ victory over shorthanded Florida on Tuesday night moved them into the final spot in my field.
  • Saint Mary’s stays in my bracket despite not having the overall profile of a NCAA at-large team. How will the committee see the Gaels? Does it matter that they look like a NCAA Tournament team? Unless Gonzaga slips up in the WCC Tournament, this debate will go down to the wire on Selection Sunday (and maybe after it).
  • I’ve argued many times this year that a crazy chain of events would have to take place for Gonzaga to get a No. 1 seed. Well, that crazy chain of events has happened. The Bulldogs are now No. 3 on my seed list. New Mexico, with 16 wins against the RPI top 100, is another unusual suspect to keep an eye on. Eleven teams can still get No. 1 seeds as of today.
  • The Duke-Miami (FL) game on Saturday will be for a No. 1 seed. The Hurricanes are there for now, but that slot might as well say “Duke/Miami”. The winner will be there after Saturday.

LAST FOUR IN: Villanova, Temple, Saint Mary’s, Tennessee
FIRST FOUR OUT: Boise State, Mississippi, Alabama, Baylor

NOTE: Projected conference champions (or auto bid winners) are in capital letters.

(full bracket after the jump)

Read the rest of this entry »

Share this story

The RTC Podcast: Episode Thirteen

Posted by rtmsf on February 12th, 2013

Another week, another RTC Podcast. This week’s version (hosted by Shane Connolly (@sconnolly114), as always) digs deeply into the core group of supposedly ‘elite’ teams that comprise the top of the rankings, discusses whether parity if necessarily bad for the game, and of course takes a look at a full slate of action heading into the rest of the week.

Check back on Friday of this week for our shorter RTC Podblast, which will run down some of the action from this week and look ahead to the weekend’s biggest games. And don’t forget to add the RTC Podcast to your iTunes lineup so that you’ll automatically upload it on your listening device after each recording. Thanks!

  • 0:00-9:43 – So Why Is Parity a Bad Thing?
  • 9:43-14:26 – Kansas and Florida Losses Most Concerning
  • 14:26-17:40 – Re-evaluating the #1 Seeds After a Wacky Week
  • 17:40-23:01 – 5 OTs Later – Louisville Still a Mystery
  • 23:01-27:32 – Player You Want Taking the Last Shot
  • 27:32-29:14 – Hey, Our Preseason Rankings are Pretty Good
  • 29:14-32:56 – How to Handle Kansas’ Awful Week in the Rankings
  • 32:56-35:29 – Should Marquette’s Gaudy Big East Record Earn a Top 25 Ranking?
  • 35:29-36:46 – Saint Louis Deserves Some Recognition
  • 36:46-38:30 – Great Battle in the Great Lakes State – Michigan/Michigan State Preview
  • 38:30-40:35 – Kentucky-Florida Preview
  • 40:35-45:45 – Miami and Duke on Upset Alert vs. In-State Rivals
  • 45:45-50:32 – Big Mid-Week Games on the West Coast
  • 50:32-53:18 – Wisconsin-Minnesota Preview/Wrap

We welcome any and all feedback on these podcasts including topics for future discussion or if you want to send us any questions for our “May Not Be From Actual Listeners” segment. Hit us up at rushthecourt@yahoo.com or @rushthecourt on Twitter.

Share this story

The RTC Podcast: Episode Eleven

Posted by rtmsf on January 29th, 2013

And we’re back for another shiny edition of the RTC Podcast. This week our host, Shane Connolly (@sconnolly114), artfully leads us on a discussion of all the crazy goings-on in college basketball over the last week-plus. With so many topics to choose from, we tried to keep it relevant, discussing Louisville’s surprising fall from grace, the possible #1 seeds at this point in the season, what to think about Miami’s ascendant behavior, and a bunch of other junk throw in between. Feel free to use the outline below to jump around to the areas of interest, of course.

Check back on Friday of this week for our shorter RTC Podblast, which will run down some of the action from this week and look ahead to the weekend’s biggest games. And don’t forget to add the RTC Podcast to your iTunes lineup so that you’ll automatically upload it on your listening device after each recording. Thanks!

0:00-3:07 - Villanova’s Great Week
3:07-10:25 – Louisville’s Fall From #1 to Barely Top 10
10:25-12:40 – Syracuse Loses a Game, But Two Key Players
12:40-19:21 – Duke and Arizona Both Drop Games in Surprising Ways
19:21-25:50 – Which Teams are Positioned to be #1 Seeds Come Selection Sunday?
25:50-29:45 – Marshall Henderson, Rock Star
29:45-32:30 – Latest Terrible Uniform Trends
32:30-37:51 – Where Does Miami Deserve to Rank After an Amazing Week?
37:51-42:41 – Minnesota’s 4-Game Losing Streak
42:41-46:18 – Where Does New Mexico Deserve to be Ranked
46:18-51:21 – Week Preview – Ohio State/Wisconsin and Top 10 Teams on Upset Alert

We welcome any and all feedback on these podcasts including topics for future discussion or if you want to send us any questions for our “May Not Be From Actual Listeners” segment. Hit us up at rushthecourt@yahoo.com or @rushthecourt on Twitter.

Share this story

Tracking The Four: Let’s Play 21 Questions

Posted by EJacoby on January 20th, 2012

Evan Jacoby is an RTC contributor & correspondent. You can find him @evanjacoby on Twitter. TT4 will cover four selected teams of interest – Syracuse, Indiana, Murray State, and UNLV – by tracking their ups, downs, and exciting developments throughout the course of the season.

For this week’s wildcard edition of TT4, we’re going to tackle some burning questions regarding each team. All four teams have pressing issues as they try to hit their strides in conference play, and there’s one team on our list that specifically needs to find some answers, quickly, if they want to stay relevant as a contender. Find out the answers to each question, or at least our quick takes, below each question. If you want to play along, comment with any of your answers!!!

Is Mike Moser the Best Player of our Four Teams? (Getty Images/E. Miller)

1. Which game on Syracuse and Murray State’s schedules should be circled as their toughest challenge to an undefeated regular season?

Monday night’s game in Cincinnati is Syracuse’s first shot at going down, while Murray State’s game on February 15 at Southeast Missouri State will be their toughest test.

2. Can Indiana recover from this losing streak to regain their status as a top three team in the Big Ten?

They’ll be able to recover, but Indiana is not a top three Big Ten team (OSU, UM, & Michigan State are better).

3. Will UNLV be able to win big games outside of Las Vegas, like SDSU did in The Pit this week?

They’ve already played seven true road games, so yes this will help UNLV win conference road games.

4. The Hoosiers have lost three straight games while the Racers have won 19 straight, but who would win on a neutral court if they played today?

We’d love to see this in the NCAA Tournament and today we’re going with Indiana, but if Ivan Aska comes back strong for MSU, ask again in two weeks.

5. When they inevitably need a bucket in crunch time, whom will Syracuse and Jim Boeheim draw the play for?

He doesn’t specialize in taking over games, but Kris Joseph is still the most talented offensive player and toughest mismatch on the team, so he should get his number called.

6. Will UNLV’s 69.1% free throw percentage come back to haunt them at some point this season?

Although it’s the worst of these four teams, no a 69% rate should not be a huge concern for the Rebels.

Read the rest of this entry »

Share this story