Sunday, February 17th Highlighted Match-ups

Sunday, February 17th Highlighted Match-ups
Feb 17, 2008, 07:21 am

-The Western Michigan at Northern Illinois game was cancelled due to the shooting tragedy that took place on NIU’s campus earlier this week. Our thoughts and prayers are with all those who were effected.

-The latest bracket projections should be posted late tonight/early tomorrow.


-OHIO STATE AT MICHIGAN (Big Ten). This is a big rivalry game, but Ohio State has dominated the series lately and we aren’t likely to see any changes today. If anything a loss in this game would be damaging to Ohio State because of Michigan’s poor RPI. The Wolverines do look like they’ve improved as the season has gone on and could give the Buckeyes a game, though. OSU is a solid tournament team and should remain that way regardless of what happens in this one, but their seed could take a hit if they fall to Michigan.

-NOTRE DAME AT RUTGERS (Big East). Rutgers can be a very tough place to play, but the Irish have shown that they’re able to play on the road, so one has to really like their chances. Notre Dame is coming off a close loss to Connecticut from earlier in the week, but losing at Connecticut isn’t going to hurt anyone. They still played a good game against the Huskies and should come out with a win today if they play as well as they have been.

-UCLA AT USC (Pac Ten). USC won the first match-up between these two in a thrilling upset. Now that they’re back home you can expect them to be playing with plenty of confidence in front of an enthusiastic fan base. The Trojans had been on a roll, but were blown out by Washington State last week and are looking to rebound from that. Adding another high quality win against a bitter rival will certainly help out their cause. UCLA, on the other hand, is back in sole control of first place with Stanford’s loss earlier in the week. They’re also still in strong contention to get the #1 seed in the Phoenix Region, which will give them a huge advantage come NCAA Tourney time.

-DUKE AT WAKE FOREST (ACC). Wake Forest has been inconsistent on the season, but they also have only one home loss, so Duke can expect another very intense atmosphere today. Wake isn’t a tournament team, and Duke looks like a #1 seed right now, but seeing as how this is a conference rivalry and that Wake is playing at home we could end up seeing a more evenly matched game than people are expecting. Even with a loss Duke is still in strong contention for a #1 seed. A win just furthers their cause.


-MIAMI, FL AT GEORGIA TECH (ACC). Miami is coming off a much needed win in their last game against Virginia Tech, but they’re still outside the bubble despite getting off to a great start and need to finish strong in conference. This is a winnable conference road game for the Canes, which is exactly the kind of game they need to be able to win in order to verify that they’re at least worthy of being in the discussion for the NCAA Tournament.

-SAINT LOUIS AT MASSACHUSETTS (Atlantic Ten). Massachusetts has gone into the tank and needs to snap out of it fast or else they’ll be watching the NCAA Tournament on TV rather than be playing in it. This is a winnable conference home game against a Saint Louis team that has been tough at times, but mostly inconsistent and mediocre. The Minutemen need to step it up and get it done in this one. Their last six games, including this one today, are winnable games against non-tournament teams and UMass probably needs to win them all.

-SETON HALL AT WEST VIRGINIA (Big East). Seton Hall has lost four straight, and what looked like an NCAA Tourney year for them is beginning to look more like an NIT year. They need to turn it around in a big way between now and the end if they want to be dancing this March. West Virginia has had more than their share of close losses, but they still appear to be in good shape. This is a winnable game for them, especially at home, so it’s the type of game they need to win if they want to remain solidly in the picture.

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