Bubble News: Bad News......Everywhere (Updated with late night picks)

Submitted by jamiemac on March 13th, 2009 at 8:46 PM

That was a so-so, at best, final impression for UM before selection day.

And, there is bad news everywhere right now for teams clinging to the bubble aiming for an at large bid.

Maryland curb stomping Wake.....this might write their dance card.

Temple beats Xavier. They can steal a bid tomorrow without the A10 losing any. And, should Duquense win in the night cap, it will be a done deal anyway. One at large swiped.

Baylor upsets Texas in the Big 12 semis. They've broke a 24-game losing streak to Texas. They were the #9 seed. They're in their first ever league championship game. And, I bet against them two days ago in the tourney opener. Good call. It's hard not to pull for them, but fans of bubble teams need them to lose tomorrow or they will take a bid from somebody who thought they were in the field.

Penn State, USC, San Diego State, Wyoming and Florida all play later still tonight. Gotta get some losses out of that group if your team is on the bubble.

A lot of teams not in the field can lock bids perhaps tonight, or get a game away with a win....and there are a few bud thieves out there lurking in these league sectionals.

Who gets pushed out, if all these chips fall? The rest of the night will determine if I remain nervous about Michigan's bid or not.

Predictions to keep the buzz going late into the night

With the Louisville cover in the books, that's a 2-2 mark in the early evening session. Record on the day, 5-4-1. Record for March, 31-22-3. Let's be careful out there people.

**** Penn State +8 over Purdue. The Boilers have not been good frontrunners this seasons. The Lions have been profitable underdogs and have had enough success away from home. Playing in Purdue's home state wont scare them. They'll go blow for blow with Purdue and be there the whole way through.

**** BYU -2 over SDSU. Is Steve Fisher a win away from swiping a bid, possible from his former emplyer. No. Cougars outshot the Aztecs tonight and kill that storyline.

***** UW pick 'em over Arizona State. Huskies are the best team in the PAC 10 and can beat in different ways with different styles. They'll showcase that game and pull away in the final minutes over the Sun Devils.

**** Auburn +3.5 Florida. They're sneaking around the chicken coop trying to steal a bid. War Eagle gets closer to that reality tonight with a big win over the Gators. They've evolved into a better team than Florida and peaking at the right time. The Tigers have been a money train the closing weeks of the season. After winning with them against the Tide and LSU to close the regular season, I'll stay with them tonight.

**** BGSU +3 over Akron. Local pick for me. BG has been the best team in the league all season. I think they squeeze out another one tonight. But, like Auburn above, I'll take the three-ball head start.

A five-pack for the night. For now. No Sugarcoat.



March 13th, 2009 at 9:11 PM ^

I thought we were in if we won 3 of our last 4...we did.

I thought we were in if we beat Minnesota in the last game of the regular season...we did.

I thought we were in if we won at least one game in the Big Ten tournament...we did.

What else do we have to do?!?


March 13th, 2009 at 9:14 PM ^

At this point, Maryland probably sewed up a bid, and damn Baylor for not losing and possibly stealing a bid. Same with Temple. While I still think UM is in, tonight's games are extremely important to that bubble not bursting.


March 13th, 2009 at 9:26 PM ^

They lost to Morgan St., at home. They were also spanked by Georgetown, which is not good aside from the pedigree. The middle and bottom of the ACC is extremely questionable and 7-9 teams rarely make the tourney. Almost everything will have to go right for them if they are to secure a bid with just these two wins. They need another win. Right now, they're probably out.


March 13th, 2009 at 9:35 PM ^

While I agree that their resume is certainly below UMs, the fact remains that they get to play another game, and now have an emphatic win over a top-10 team toward the end. Sure, 7-9 in the ACC should keep them out (I believe that a sub-.500 record in conference should bar any team unless some extremely relevant extenuating circumstance is at play), but they also have wins over MSU, UM, UNC, and now Wake. That is a decent resume, and I just worry about what might happen if they stay hot. Right now I think Maryland is out and UM is in, but that uncertainty is why I was worried when everyone was crowing UM in the tournament with that win over Iowa.


March 13th, 2009 at 9:40 PM ^

Should they win tomorrow, it would be extremely hard to leave them out. They do have some impressive top line victories, but some hard falls as well (Morgan St., Virginia). I also agree that sub .500 should be excluded barring some rare extenuating circumstance (such as impressive top line victories, no bad losses). I just can't place Maryland in that group unless they win tomorrow. The only example I can think of from this year would be Georgetown. Had they gone 8-10 and won two in the Big East tourney, they probably deserved a bid (of course that did not happen). But with the Terps, I still think they must win tomorrow.


March 13th, 2009 at 9:53 PM ^

I honestly thought that UVa win was the nail in the coffin for their bid, but if they win tomorrow then they probably deserve consideration. I still think the win over UM is not as impressive because it was at home and only by a small margin, so I don't think the committee will read much into that if the two teams are matched up against each other for one bid. Right now, I'm rooting for Duke and UCLA to run their respective tables, as that would help the SOS argument. Same with Purdue.


March 13th, 2009 at 9:23 PM ^

First, not all is bad. Kentucky lost today. They now have a 100% of chance of missing the dance. With Tennessee's victory over Alabama, that means the most the SEC will get is three.

Second, Minnesota also lost today and Penn State is getting spanked right now. Furthermore, Wisconsin lost. Their resume is far from impressive and I would not be surprised if they were excluded from the tourney (no top line wins in conference or out of conference to speak of).

Third, it's hard for me to believe that Baylor can win four straight games.

Fourth, in a doomsday A10 scenario where Temple beats Xavier and Duquense wins tonight and beats Temple in the final, the worse that can happen is the Duquense steals a bid. Temple probably isn't in unless the win the A10, but more importantly, they are certainly below us. Now, they may surpass Penn State by virtue of their victory against them in the nonconference, but we should still be okay.

Most prognosticators have Michigan, Minnesota and Penn State in the same group, but I am aware of none who place Michigan third on the list. We are either first or second, with most seeming to place us first. Therefore, should Penn State lose tonight (they are well on their way), we should be fine no matter what.


March 13th, 2009 at 9:41 PM ^

I think Minny will be the odd team out. PSU is probably going to lose to Purdue, and if you count Wiscy as well, all four bubble teams in the Big 10 lost today. UM is probably second in that group, meaning I don't want to be Minny or PSU right now.

And while I agree that Wiscy has an extremely weak resume, consistent tournament teams tend to receive the benefit of the doubt during a down year. I saw the same happen to MSU while I was there in 2001-2002, people forget that they were 16-11 going into the tournament, yet still were awarded a 10 seed. Wisconsin has been a staple in the tournament for the decade, and I suspect that the committee would view this history favorably in any tie-breaker.


March 14th, 2009 at 12:42 AM ^

Penn State's doomsday scenario has just come to fruition. First, they get stomped by Purdue. To add insult to injury, Temple wins and Dayton loses, which means their inexcusable non-conference loss to Temple will not only hurt them, but further expose their absolutely despicable non-conference schedule (which also includes a loss to Rhode Island).

In other developments, Steve Fischer's San Diego St. just beat BYU to solidify their spot. Also, Utah St. narrowly won today, avoiding the possibility of Utah St. stealing an at large bid.

Also, the SEC is in serious danger of receiving only two bids. Kentucky and South Carolina lost today, which all but assures they will not be invited to the dance. Also, Florida lost to Auburn, which seriously jeopardizes their at large hopes. Barring Mississippi St. winning the conference tourney or Auburn winning at least tomorrow's game (both unlikely), the SEC will only get two bids.


March 14th, 2009 at 12:42 AM ^

Very interesting game going on right now: UCLA-USC. We obviously want UCLA to look good, and a USC loss takes them out of the bubble picture. But SC has a five-point halftime lead. Let's go Bruins!


March 14th, 2009 at 2:11 AM ^

Assuming the worst, ie. Duquesne winning the A-10/Temple getting an at-large, Baylor winning the Big XII, Miss. St. or Auburn winning the SEC,Nevada winning the WAC/Utah State getting an at-large and Maryland winning the ACC, I still see us being above the last four in, or barely in the last four in.

I just don't see a way for Michigan to fall out of the tourney at this point. Although I'm certainly hoping the nightmare scenario I just gave doesn't pan out.

On the other hand, it looks highly unlikely that the Big Ten gets 8 bids and Penn State is the odd man out.