News Notes and Highlighted NCAA Games for Thurs, Feb 22

News Notes and Highlighted NCAA Games for Thurs, Feb 22
Feb 22, 2007, 12:46 am

-Illinois Chicago defeated Wisconsin Milwaukee last night 72-59. That puts them one game ahead in the conference standings, and if that result holds until the end Wright State will have the tiebreaker against Butler and get home court advantage throughout the Horizon League Tournament.

-Several of teams that needed road wins didn’t get them. Alabama fell at Tennessee in overtime, Purdue fell at Iowa and Florida State fell at Maryland, which is FSU’s fifth straight loss. Michigan State stepped up with a big win against Wisconsin the other night, but as for the rest of the bubble no one has really managed to improve their situation all that much. If anything, they’ve made it worse.


-LOYOLA, IL AT BUTLER (Horizon League). Loyola is one of the more talented teams in the Horizon League, but beating Butler at home will be a major challenge. Butler still has a good shot at a #4 seed if they can win out and win the conference tournament, so even though they are undermatched for the rest of the regular season the games still mean quite a bit.

-DUKE AT CLEMSON (ACC). Duke has rebounded from their four game losing streak by winning their last two games and looking very impressive in both outings. They do not have an easy chore tonight, though. Clemson is a team that could really use a big win, so that combined with the fact that they’re hosting Duke will make for a very intense atmosphere. Not that Duke isn’t used to that, but this is an important game between two teams who are looking for a big win to boost the value of their resumes.

-NEVADA AT IDAHO (WAC). Nevada is the best team in the conference, and is one of the better teams in the country, and tonight they are facing one of the worst teams in both the conference and the country. They just need to take care of business and avoid putting what would be a very bad loss on their resume.

-RICE AT MEMPHIS (Conference USA). Memphis just one a very intense game against Gonzaga over the weekend. That will be helpful because it was a decent road win, but the quality of their resume has basically plateaued. They will be undermatched the rest of the way and just need to win out in order to sustain a good resume and earn what should be a good seed.

-UTAH STATE AT NEW MEXICO STATE (WAC). These are the second and third place teams in the WAC. Neither has much in the way of quality wins, but they both have a chance of getting themselves somewhat into the discussion for an at-large bid if they win out. Both will be facing Nevada between now and the end, so it’s a chance to add a quality win to their resume as well.

-WASHINGTON STATE AT OREGON (Pac Ten). Oregon has really gone into the tank lately having lost six of their last eight, and could really use a big quality win to turn themselves around. At one point it looked like Oregon was headed toward the pod system. They are still a solid tournament team, but need to win some games between now and the end to stay that way. Wazzu is a solid tourney team who is contending for the pod system, and this win would be yet another nice resume win and help strengthen their case even more. It’s been an exciting season in the Pac Ten so far. The last time these two met Oregon won a thriller in overtime, so we could be in for another treat tonight.

-CALIFORNIA AT UCLA (Pac Ten). Cal is really struggling and is in for what could be another very long night. UCLA is still contending for a #1 seed and doesn’t want to slip up in what is a very winnable game at home. If all goes according to plan, UCLA should dominate.

-STANFORD AT USC (Pac Ten). USC suffered a shocking lost in their last game against Arizona State, but they won a big road game before that against Arizona. They still look to have a very solid resume despite having what is somewhat of a low RPI, and a win here will only continue to build on that. Both of these teams appear to have their tournament tickets punched, but this is still a big game because it would mean a quality win for both teams, as well as have an impact on the conference standings, which are all things the committee looks at.

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