The conference tournaments are usually where we see the true colors of teams. It has something to do with the bright lights and pressure surrounding every one of these teams and how they handle it, knowing that everything is on the line.
This past week, we saw some teams rise to the occasion, like Louisville, Cincinnati and Mew Mexico, and other teams we saw crumble under the pressure of serious talent in their opponents.
Here are teams that should be looking over their shoulder in the first or second rounds of the NCAA Tournament.
It was extremely disheartening to see Duke lose to Florida State on Saturday. It was all set to be a rematch with North Carolina in the ACC Tournament Final and revenge for the Blue Devils getting hammered back at Cameron Indoor in their last meeting.
However, the Blue Devils never brought their A game, and things are getting lackadaisical in Durham these days.
Both Florida State and North Carolina really revealed what a lot were thinking, that Duke is simply not as deep and talented as we thought they were.
Austin Rivers and the Plumlee brothers are the only players this team can rely on these days.
The team is still coached by Mike Krzyzewski, but that may only take them so far this year in the NCAA Tournament.
The Irish have suddenly become a flaky under the intense pressure of Big East conference play. They were at the top of their game when they took down Syracuse, but this team may be most inconsistent in the nation.
They lost five of eight games early in the season, then won nine in a row in the thick of Big East play, only to lose three of their last five games to end the year.
This is a rough team to pick in the NCAA Tournament because you do not know which team will show up on any given night.
If we get the early-season Irish, then start booking tickets for the Sweet 16 and Elite 8. If not, we may see a first- or second-round upset coming their way.
If we are picking Michigan to be upset early in the NCAA Tournament, the best facts to back up that statement would be to check out their Big 10 Tournament, in which they were unable to get in the rhythm we had seen close to the entire season from them.
Teams need to play best when their opponents increase their productivity and the pressure is on. It prepares them for the actual tournament.
Ohio State increased their productivity on Saturday, and the Wolverines had no answer. The Buckeyes are a big-league team in the NCAA and Michigan did not belong in their arena, losing by 22 points.
Even more, Michigan barely sneaked past a desperate Minnesota team in overtime.
For the Wolverines to succeed, they need big-time contributions from Trey Burke and Tim Hardaway Jr.
Neither of them showed up on Saturday in arguably the biggest game of the season. What makes you think they can show up consistently in the NCAA Tournament?