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What Thursday’s results mean for Northwestern, Oregon, USC, Saint Mary’s, others in 2023 bracketology

Thursday night’s action made plenty of impact on Bracketology with Selection Sunday about two months away.

Syndication: The Register Guard Ben Lonergan/The Register-Guard / USA TODAY NETWORK

Thursday night’s college basketball action featured plenty of significant matchups between teams looking to improve resumes looking toward Selection Sunday, which will take place on March 12th. Below is a look at some of the most important results from Thursday’s slate.

Key games for bracketology

Loyola Marymount 78, Saint Mary’s 74, OT

The Saint Mary’s Gaels are beloved by the NET rankings, but any loss they have in the West Coast Conference will likely be damaging to the resume outside of the Gonzaga Bulldogs. Saint Mary’s followed an overtime win over the Zags with Thursday night’s loss to Loyola Marymount, which also went into overtime. The Gaels rank seventh in the NET and after Thursday’s results, ESPN’s Joe Lunardi has them slotted as a No. 5 seed in his latest Bracketology.

Northwestern 69, Ohio State 63

The Ohio State Buckeyes needed to make an incredible run to work their way back into NCAA Tournament contention, but their collapse continued with their 10th loss in their last 11 games. Metrics like NET (46) and KenPom (39) suggest Ohio State isn’t that bad, but an 11-13 record says otherwise. The Northwestern Wildcats actually rank worse than the Buckeyes in NET (49), but they improved to 17-7 overall and are a No. 9 seed according to Lunardi.

Bubble Watch

Oregon 78, USC 60

This was the biggest bubble battle of the night as the Oregon Ducks and USC Trojans are both on the fringe of the NCAA Tournament, according to ESPN’s Bracketology. Despite the loss, the Trojans are listed in the “last four byes” category, while the Ducks are among the “first four out” following Thursday night’s contest. Both programs are heading into an important final month of the season as they live the exciting and dangerous life on the bubble.