Thursday, February 25, 2010

Thursday's Pregame Beat

7:00 pm: Tulsa @ Duke: Tulsa has lost three in a row and four of their last five, essentially eliminating them from bubble contention. But unlike any of the other mid-majors, the Golden Hurricane have a bailout as they get a shot at knocking off Duke. A win over a top five team (No. 2 in the RPI), especially on the road and out of conference, would go a long way towards putting Tulsa back onto the bubble map. Its probably not enough to get them into the tournament alone, but its a good start.

Its also going to be a good tune-up for Duke. This time of year, when you are playing late season conference games, teams know each other so well that it is sometimes difficult to run your sets. With Tulsa coming to town, it will afford the Blue Devils the opportunity to see what works and what doesn't works against a team that doesn't know them and their tendencies as well. For NBA fans, this is a chance to see Tulsa's big man Jerome Jordan go against some kids with NBA size.

9:00 pm: South Carolina @ Kentucky: Kentucky is 26-1 on the season. Their one loss? To the Gamecocks about a month ago as Devan Downey went crazy down the stretch. This one will be played in Rupp, however, so expect Kentucky to come out ready to play.

8:00 pm: Murray State @ Morehead State: I doubt that this game will get much coverage outside of Murray State's and Morehead State's respective areas, but this is a game that will no doubt be quite entertaining. Murray State is undefeated in the OVC and handed Morehead State a 30 point loss back in December. Morehead State has a potential NBA draft pick in Kenneth Faried and gave Louisville all it could handle in the first round of the tournament last season. Should be a fun one.

Bubble Watch: Apparently, all the teams on the bubble played last night.

  • 9:00 pm: Arizona @ Cal: Even if the Bears win out, they are a long shot to earn an at-large bid. But if Cal does win, they will be playing Arizona State on Saturday for the league lead.
  • 10:05 pm: Pepperdine @ St. Mary's: The Gaels still have a shot at a bid if they lose in the WCC Tournament. I like this team, and will likely put a scare into anyone they play in the first round.
  • 12:05 am: Utah State @ Hawaii: The Aggies have asserted themselves as the best of the WAC. If they can win out, they might be able to sneak into the tournament with a trip to the WAC finals.
Other notable games
  • 7:00 pm: Georgia @ Vanderbilt
  • 9:00 pm: Wisconsin @ Indiana
  • 10:00 pm: Arizona State @ Stanford
  • 11:00 pm: Santa Clara @ Gonzaga

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