It's a day to hand out bids. At 10pm PT, the team of the Buffet, Campbell goes for 4 wins in a week and turn a 13-16 season into a 18-16 with their 2nd tournament appearance all time. Keon Johnson & Xavier Cooks have gotten a bit lost in the Chris Clemons shuffle, Keon has put up 31 points on back to back nights, and Xavier has gone double double-doubles - leading Winthrop passed Charleston Southern and threw an OT scare versus Gardner-Webb.
Then at 11, it's the MVC's version of Ali/Frasier
Illinois State. Wichita State. One teams gets an automatic invite. The other team spends a long week begging for chalk in all of the major conference tournaments. Both schools have mopped up - Wichita State did evil things to Bradley in an 82-56 win and then cruised through Missouri State 78-63. Meanwhile, Illinois State let Evansville linger long than the game seemed to dictate in a 80-69 win, and then put the lights out on Southern Illinois 63-50, in a game that was 63-50 at halftime. Come tomorrow morning, or perhaps we'll go Winthrop Xavier Cooks and put up a double-double of our own, and give you a Sunday evening Buffet, we'll deep dive into the loser of this game at-large chances.
And, finally down at the home of Florida Gulf Coast, Brandon Goodwin and Marc-Eddy Norelia and the rest of Dunk City take on the team that made the Buffet prophetic, A-Sun player of the year Dallas Moore and the rest of the #birdsoftrey, North Florida Ospreys look for their 2 tournament appearance in 3 years...
But, for a second let's celebrate Jacksonville State
Successful at Division II Kentucky-Wesleyan, embattled at Western Kentucky, having resigned under a shroud of mystery, player suspensions and the cloak of federal privacy laws, Ray Harper was hired at Jacksonville State. Maybe his magic is Division II school, because he brought a former DII school that joined the OVC in 2003 to its first final and first tournament all in the same season. Erik Durham led the Gamecocks with 17, Greg Hunter scored all 14 of his points in the first half, as the Gamecocks took down the flu-riddled Skyhawks 66-55.
- Iowa is currently hosting Penn State in a game they must get if they want to keep their recently boosted Waiting Line chances at lofty levels.
- Houston hosts East Carolina in what should be a cruise of a win, although UConn learned recently that might not be the case
- Northwestern, who cemented their invite with their buzzer beating win over Michigan, could climb the seed line ladder beating B10 champ Purdue at home today
- Minnesota is as hot as it gets, Wisconsin is the opposite, can the Badgers restore some order to their season as the regular season closes?
- Michigan travels to Nebraska trying to climb into a white uniform seeding situation come next Sunday
WHAT ABOUT YESTERDAY?
- It got started with an amazing buzzer beater from St Francis to reach the NEC final versus Mount Saint Mary's on Tuesday.
- Indiana stayed in the conversation winning at Ohio State
- Kentucky doused the smoldering embers that were any Texas A&M hopes (which were computer aided at best and not actual performance based)
- Providence avoided let down and handled their business at St. John's.
- Rutgers sent Illinois to the NIT (assuming no Big10 tournament championship)
- Tennessee did to Alabama what they've done to themselves since beating Kentucky - eliminated them from at-large conversation.
- California continued their run to the NIT, getting swept in the Mountains by Colorado after getting humbled by Utah on Thursday
- Maryland did exactly what the Buffet asked them to, getting this winner from Melo Trimble to take out Michigan State at home
- Villanova, Kansas, Arizona, Oregon, and Virginia all did the work top 1-4 seeds should.
- Louisville enhanced their protected seed chances with a spirited win over Notre Dame
- VCU stayed in control of their at large positioning with a home win over George Mason
- VANDY VANDY VANDY -- a new Buffetology will be posted later, but it WILL include Vanderbilt who got themselves a huge win, and season sweep over Florida.
- Kansas State put the whole Texas Tech thing to bed, and pushed themselves ever closer to the front of the Waiting Line...
- Florida State's 9 point win over Miami probably locked them into a 3 seed floor next week
- Xavier ended their slide with a big second half to get a double-digit win at DePaul
- Marquette punched their own ticket before the BE tournament with a win over Creighton
- Ditto Seton Hall, they went into Hinkle and came away with a huge road win over a team that might have been the hottest in the country in Butler
- Um TCU, thanks for coming out. Also, Oklahoma isn't going to win the B12 tournament, but I wouldn't want to have to face them, Lon Kruger has this talented young team playing well right now, even if the W/Ls don't show it.
- Utah. Utah? Really? On some level yes, wining 5 of 7, including the 30 point win over California, you must at least mention them. So we did. Hopefully that's the last time, nice finish to the season, empty resume.
- Clemson blew out Boston College to stay in consideration.
- SMU made Memphis look silly.
- Syracuse blew out Georgia Tech at home, which may have put the finishing touches on the Yellow Jackets at large chances, barring something special next week in the ACCT
- Wake Forest, however, did the opposite, a big road win for them, and @TiedyeNation will likely find themselves safely in the next Buffetology projection
- Rhode Island survived at large hopes disaster, outlasting Davidson in OT at home.
- Middle Tennessee announced that they're more than the likely conference tournament champ with a 34 point home win over Florida Atlantic
- USC bounced back from last week's Arizona sweep and poor first half to take out Washington playing without Markelle Fultz
- Smart people basketball:
- Princeton had zero issues dispatching Dartmouth and finishing perfect in the Ivy
- Penn notched a 3 point win over Harvard while Columbia fell at Yale, pushing the Quakers into the 4th slot in the first ever Ivy tournament.
- South Dakota needed OT to avoid the fate of fellow top seed North Dakota St, who lost by 19 to IUPUI
- The Horizon League was turned upside down as this happened to Oakland:
- And Milwaukee won a rock fight with Valpo that was 16-12 at halftime and finished 43-41, sending the Panthers and Youngstown to a top 2 seed-less semifinal against the winners of a pair of quarterfinal matchups going on today
- Nevada clinched the Mountain West season title and the top seed next week using a 20-3 second half run to cruise to a 85-72 win over Colorado State
- Dayton, fresh off their A10 clinching win over VCU took the day off, falling at George Washington, and probably knocking them down a seed line or two...
- North Carolina took suspense out of the perennially most overhyped game of every season, taking control of a see saw matchup with over 6 minutes to play, not a blow out but the outcome was clear over the course of those final six minutes
- Texas-Arlington made sure we knew they need to win their conference tournament if they're going to be playing anywhere near the NCAA tournament, falling at UL-Lafayette.
- Ole Miss kept themselves relevant next week, beating likely tournament team South Carolina at home
- Is BYU a thing? Well, keeping things going in the WCC tournament means they're not not a thing, if they were a thing to begin with.
- Gonzaga started slow (27-25 lead at halftime), but finished on a blitz (55-25 second half) to dispatch Pacific...
- The TJ Leaf-less UCLA Bruins kept things needlessly interesting, but finally used a 14-0 run to close the game, Lonzo Ball setting the Pac-12 assist record, and this Ike Anigbogu block ( http://www.espn.com/video/clip?id=18827279) to put away Washington State in Westwood
- And Saint Mary's capped the night with relatively drama free (it was 5 at halftime but...) win over Portland
AND WE'LL SEE YOU ALL LATER TONIGHT... enjoy your Sunday Basketball Buffets, where ever you are watching...