Ryan Dunn in the RTC correspondent for the Atlantic Sun Conference.
News and Notes
The wild and wacky year in the A-Sun will continue as we head into the tournament which will take place March 3-6 at the University Center in Macon, Georgia (Mercer’s home arena). The tournament takes the top eight teams in the league. There was never a clear-cut leader in the league through most of the regular season and we were thinking that perhaps a team or two would separate from the rest of the league; however, that never happened and instead got even more jumbled after the last weekend of the regular season.
Campbell led the league through the first half of the regular season but then fell back a few spots after a tough road swing in January. The Camels got back in the thick of things after winning six straight that catapulted them to the top of the league once again. But a loss at Jacksonville on Thursday night looked to end Campbell’s hopes of winning a league title until the Dolphins turned around and lost to ETSU in the season finale on Saturday. With Lipscomb and Belmont winning their final two games of the regular season, both found themselves tied for the league’s number one spot when play concluded on Saturday night. With that, four teams tied for the regular season championship (Lipscomb, Jacksonville, Belmont, and Campbell). After all of the tiebreakers took place, Lipscomb earned the #1 seed, Jacksonville #2, Belmont #3, and Campbell #4 for the upcoming A-Sun tournament. ETSU earned the #5 seed, Mercer #6, UNF #7 and Kennesaw State #8.
With the parity of the A-Sun this season, I have a feeling that there will be some extremely exciting games in the upcoming tournament. There are no clear favorites; however, I will say that playing on Wednesday can be an advantage because the winners on Wednesday will get to have a much valuable day off before playing in the semifinals on Friday. So I would give a very slight advantage to Lipscomb and Jacksonville just for that reason.