Friday, January 30, 2015

Grip's Bracket - Friday, January 30

We're weekly from here on out.  It's officially Bubble Season (tm) and the Bubble Watch is beneath this post.

Automatic Bids

America East - Albany
The Great Danes failed to get to 50 at Vermont on Wednesday but they got closer than the Catamounts did to open up a two game lead on both them and Stony Brook.
Atlantic Sun - North Florida
Dunk City remains hot on their heels but the Ospreys are still unbeaten in the league.
Big Sky - Sacramento State
The Hornets are finally starting to live up to preseason expectations.  They waxed league leader Eastern Washington a couple Saturdays ago but they remain tied atop the conference with the Eagles and Montana, whom they visit tomorrow night.
Big South - High Point
Coastal Carolina has dropped 3 of 4 to cede control of the conference to the Panthers, who are a game ahead of them, Radford, Charleston Southern, UNC Asheville and Winthrop.  And yet, this ISN'T the most wide open one bid league.  We'll get to *that* league.
Big West - UC Davis
The Aggies handled The Alan Williams Project last night to remain in a three way tie with UC Irvine, who held serve at home against Cal Poly and Long Beach State, who survived in OT at Cal State Fullerton.  They own wins over both but the rematch in Irvine is Thursday.
CAA - William & Mary
If UNC Wilmington had held on to that 22 point lead they had in Williamsburg a few weeks ago, they'd be alone on top of this conference.  Instead, they're tied for first with the Tribe, who have blown away the other two contenders in this league Northeastern and Hofstra in their last two games.
Horizon - Green Bay
Survived the ugly top of the table clash with Valparaiso last Friday to keep this bid.  Cleveland State and Oakland are also a game back in the loss column and the Phoenix have to go play the former tomorrow.
Ivy - Yale
Harvard finally paid the piper for subpar play for most of this season by shockingly losing by 9 at home to Dartmouth last Saturday and it's the Bulldogs who benefit.  Yale finally plays a non-Brown conference opponent tonight when they go to Columbia.
MAC - Kent State
The Golden Flashes have emerged from this mess a game ahead of Bowling Green and Akron and two games in front of Central and Western Michigan, Buffalo and Toledo.  Needless to say, that is subject to change - especially with road games at Buffalo and Western coming up this week.
MAAC - Iona
They lost at Monmouth by a triple back on December 7.  They've lost once in conference since but surprise packages Rider and Monmouth remain in the rear view.  Still, this appears to be clearly the league's best team.
MEAC - North Carolina Central
January 11 is the last time anyone in the conference beat them....January 11 of last year.  Ironically, that was Florida A&M.  Florida A&M is winless this year.
NEC - Robert Morris
It's now just a two way tie atop this conference with Bryant losing at previous co-leader St. Francis (PA) last night.  The Kentucky NIT Conquerors won at fellow co-leader St. Francis (NY) on Saturday and are now a cool 9 spots ahead of them in RPI.
OVC - Murray State
It took overtime but the Racers remained unbeaten in league play by beating Eastern Kentucky.  Previous leader Eastern Illinois was busy losing by 30 at Tennessee-Martin, its third straight loss.
Patriot - Bucknell
THIS is the most wide open league.  The Bison are 12-10 (including a win over Case Western Reserve, who are a Division 3 school based in Cleveland) and 7-2 in league play.  9-13 Colgate - the previous leaders the last time we did this - are a game back at 6-3.  14 win Army, the most wins of anyone in the league, is 5-4.  Lafayette, American, Lehigh, Boston University, Loyola (MD) AND Navy are all 4-5.  And one of the preseason favorites and arguably the most prestigious basketball program in the conference, Holy Cross, brings up the rear at 3-6.  Pretty much anyone can #GoGetThatPatriot
SoCon - Wofford
Still 50th in RPI, the Terriers are in play for a coveted 12 seed.  3rd placed Mercer beat 2nd placed Chattanooga by 3 in overtime so now both are a game back.
Southland - Stephen F. Austin
It wasn't even close from the beginning.  The Jacks got out 22-3 at Sam Houston State on Saturday to emphatically remain unbeaten atop the conference.  The Bearkats are now tied with.....Texas A&M Corpus Christi?!?  In the loss column, anyway - SHSU has one more league win.
Summit - South Dakota State
They remain a half game better than North Dakota State in the conference and two games better overall.  They won on Wednesday by 22 over Nebraska Omaha, who scored 97 and won at Marquette back in November, but is now dead last in this league.
Sun Belt - Georgia Southern
One of the most surprising good teams in a one bid league, the typically football powerhouse Eagles are 14-4 and alone atop the league at 7-2.  They're up from 263 to 122 in KenPom but still 22 spots behind preseason favorite Georgia State, who is a half game back along with UL Monroe.
SWAC - Texas Southern
Alabama State is the last unbeaten.  Alabama State is also the last APR ineligible tourney team.  Mike Davis' team is the lone one loss school ahead of lone two loss Southern.
WAC - New Mexico State
They're 4-1.  Grand Canyon, Seattle, Utah Valley and UMKC are all 3-2 with Texas Pan American and Cal State Bakersfield at 2-3 (and poor Chicago State is 0-5 and 4-18 overall.)  What a wild, wide open race between an eclectic group of teams.  This really IS the Great West's spirit animal.

S Curve

Kentucky Virginia Arizona Wisconsin
Kansas Villanova Gonzaga Duke
North Carolina VCU Notre Dame Wichita State
Louisville Utah Iowa State West Virginia
Maryland Butler Georgetown Ohio State
San Diego State Arkansas SMU Providence
Stanford Baylor Georgia Oklahoma
Northern Iowa Oklahoma State Texas Indiana
Dayton Texas A&M LSU Cincinnati
Iowa Xavier Miami FL Colorado State
Tulsa Old Dominion Michigan State Seton Hall/Ole Miss
George Washington/NC State Wofford Green Bay Yale
Iona Murray State Stephen F. Austin Kent State
North Carolina Central Louisiana Tech High Point William & Mary
Georgia Southern Texas Southern South Dakota State UC Davis
Sacramento State Albany New Mexico State/North Florida Robert Morris/Bucknell

Last 4 In - Seton Hall, Ole Miss, George Washington, NC State
First 4 Out - Alabama, Tennessee, St. John's Illinois
Next 4 Out - Syracuse, Temple, Boise State, Kansas State

MIDWEST (Cleveland)

(1) Kentucky (SEC)
(16) Robert Morris (NEC)/Bucknell (Patriot)

(8) Northern Iowa
(9) Dayton

(5) Maryland
(12) Yale (Ivy)

(4) West Virginia
(13) Iona (MAAC)

(6) Providence
(11) Tulsa (AAC)

(3) North Carolina
(14) High Point (Big South)

(7) Oklahoma
(10) Colorado State

(2) Gonzaga (WCC)
(15) Georgia Southern (Sun Belt)

SOUTH (Houston)

(1) Wisconsin (Big Ten)
(16) Sacramento State (Big Sky)

(8) Oklahoma State
(9) Cincinnati

(5) Georgetown
(12) George Washington/NC State

(4) Louisville
(13) Kent State (MAC)

(6) Providence
(11) Old Dominion

(3) Wichita State (MVC)
(14) North Carolina Central (MEAC)

(7) Georgia
(10) Iowa

(2) Kansas (Big 12)
(15) UC Davis (Big West)

EAST (Syracuse)

(1) Virginia (ACC)
(16) New Mexico State (WAC)/North Florida (A-Sun)

(8) Texas
(9) Texas A&M

(5) Ohio State
(12) Green Bay (Horizon)

(4) Utah
(13) Murray State (OVC)

(6) SMU
(11) Michigan State

(3) VCU (A-10)
(14) William & Mary (CAA)

(7) Baylor
(10) Miami (FL)

(2) Villanova (Big East)
(15) Texas Southern (SWAC)

WEST (Los Angeles)

(1) Arizona (Pac-12)
(16) Albany (AE)

(8) Indiana
(9) LSU

(5) Butler
(12) Wofford (SoCon)

(4) Notre Dame
(13) Stephen F. Austin (Southland)

(6) San Diego State (MWC)
(11) Seton Hall/Ole Miss

(3) Iowa State
(14) Louisiana Tech (C-USA)

(7) Stanford
(10) Xavier

(2) Duke
(15) South Dakota State (Summit)

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