We’ve finally reached the final weekend of the regular season in college basketball and we got a soft roll-in with a robust Thursday night slate.
The biggest outcome was No. 6 Kansas narrowly avoiding a three-game losing streak by edging TCU for a 72-68 win at Allen Fieldhouse. A loss there would’ve put the Jayhawks’ current claim as a No. 1 seed in jeopardy but instead, they have another Quad 2 victory to bolster their already strong resume.
Following that same trend of teams stopping the bleeding was No. 23 Ohio State, who ended a two-game losing streak by coming up big with an 80-69 victory over Michigan State. The Buckeyes did it without the services of both Zed Key and Kyle Young and a fifth Quad 2 win will bolster its claim to a top five seed in the NCAA Tournament.
Last night’s bubble watch
- Cincinnati at SMU: The Mustangs continued to build their Tournament resume with a 76-71 home win, its 21st victory of the season. SMU should be solidly in the field of 68 as they were ranked 49th in NET ratings on Thursday.
- Memphis at USF: Staying in the American, Memphis avoided a could’ve been a fatal trap by handling its business against a ghastly USF team on Thursday. The Tigers have turned things around by winning nine of their last 10 and could really propel themselves with another upset of Houston Sunday.
- Little Rock vs. South Alabama: Any hope South Alabama had to potentially sneak into the NCAA Tournament was crushed on Thursday as it was upset by Little Rock 75-71 in the first-round of the Sun Belt Tournament.
Games to watch today
- Murray State vs. Southeast Missouri State: The only ranked team in action tonight is No. 22 Murray State as they’ll face off against Southeast Missouri State in the semifinals of the Ohio Valley Conference Tournament. The Racers have been hovering around the No. 8 and 9 seed in most bracketology projections, and while a loss wouldn’t be the end of the world, they’d certainly help their cause with a win.
- Belmont vs. Morehead State: The other OVC semifinal will feature a bubble team in Belmont battling Morehead State, so this is one the Bruins absolutely need.
- BYU vs. Loyola Marymount: BYU will step onto the floor of the West Coast Conference Tournament when facing Loyola Marymount. Some bracket experts have the Cougars as one of the final teams in the field so this is an everything to lose situation for them here.
Bubble teams from BracketWag.com
Current conference breakdown according to ESPN’s Joe Lunardi
Big Ten 9
Big East 7
Big 12 6
Mountain West 4