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Life on the Bubble

Before I get started I wanted to direct you to a new SBN blog - Blogging the Bracket.  Be sure to check them out this week for all of your bracket coverage needs. 

The loss yesterday clearly puts us on the bubble.  I believe that our resume puts us in a better position than most of the bubble teams.  Looking at what happened yesterday here is what helped and what hurt...

What hurt?

  • Losing at home to Michigan.  Up double-digits at home in the second half is a tough loss to take.  That first possession when Michigan went to the zone and our offense stalled it was pretty clear that we were going to be in trouble offensively the rest of the half.  A win would have put us IN but we lost and that was the biggest hurt of the day yesterday.
  • Arizona won at Stanford.  AZ was a bubble team that was one bad loss from falling out of the tournament. 
  • Miami beat NC State. Another bubble team that got a much needed win. 

What helped?

  • Penn State lost to Iowa.  BAD loss.  The Nittany Lions are likely in with 10 B10 wins, 21 overall wins including wins over MSU, Pur and Ill.  But losing to Iowa is pretty bad and mixed with their bad RPI of 61 things may get interesting if they lose their first B10 tourney game.
  • Maryland lost to Virginia.  This one will really help us.  Common opponents, we beat Virginia!  That won't really factor in but we have a better RPI (41 vs. 65) and this is one of the few teams we have been fighting with for one of the last spots over the last couple weeks.  That is a bad loss.
  • Creighton was crushed by Illinois State.  Their at-large resume was hurt by a 24 point upset in the Missouri Valley Tournament.
  • Cincinnati lost at home to Seton Hall.  The Bearcats were a bubble team that will need a BigEast Tourney run to get in.  Scratch them off the bubble.
  • Kentucky lost to Florida.  If the Wildcats make the tournament at this point I think the committee loses all credibility.  Only 19 wins, .500 in conference and 79  RPI.  You could argue that Northwestern has a stronger resume than Kentucky, especially if they can beat Ohio State today.
  • UNLV lost to San Diego State.  21 wins, 9-7 in conference but that's not going to be enough for the fifth best team coming out of the Moutain West.

Games that matter today.

Ohio State vs. Northwestern.  I can't decide who I want to win this one.  Ohio State winning knocks NU out of bubble talk, but an OSU loss brings them into the mediocre middle at 9-9.

Things are going to be interesting.  Getting swept by Michigan stinks but remember Wisconsin swept Michigan and we swept Wisconsin.  I still believe one B10 tourney win gets it done for us and losing the first game will knock us out, but it will take two wins to breath easy on Selection Sunday.  We are all more nervous than we should be right now and that is frustrating.