It’s crunch time for bubble teams as the last weekend of the regular season is upon us. The bubble picture remains full of middle-of-the-road teams from the power conferences. This weekend should help shape the bubble picture with several key games.
The two most intriguing bubble match-ups include Michigan at Minnesota and Kentucky at Florida. The two winners will gain a big advantage towards an at-large bid, while the losers will have to look for a run in their respective conference tournaments.
Here are this weeks winner and losers. As always, comments are welcome.
(Note: Next edition will be published on Monday morning. All RPI and SOS numbers are taken from realtimerpi.com.)
The Nittany Lions may have secured themselves an NCAA tournament bid when they knocked off Illinois on Thursday. Not many bubble teams can match the six wins Penn St. has over RPI Top-50 teams.
The Lobos have come out of nowhere to jump into the bubble discussion after beating Utah Tuesday and force a three-way tie in the Mountain West Conference. They have won seven of eight including wins over San Diego St. and UNLV. New Mexico finishes the regular season against Wyoming.
The Gophers picked up a huge win this week by knocking off Wisconsin at home. The win means Minnesota will finish with at least a .500 record in the Big Ten. They finish the regular season by hosting Michigan in a critical bubble match-up.
Other winners: Creighton, Tennessee, BYU, San Diego St., UNLV, Texas A&M, Oklahoma St.
After losing to Georgia on Wednesday, the Wildcats mostly likely need a win against Florida to keep their chances alive. Their RPI numbers are creeping towards the 80’s and they are 3-7 in their last ten games.
As much as Kentucky needs to beat Florida, the Gators need the win just as bad after losing to Mississippi St. on Wednesday. Although they have 21 wins, only two of them are against the RPI Top-50-something the selection committee is sure to frown on.
The Bearcats were right in the thick of the bubble discussion only two weeks ago. Now, they have lost four of five after getting burnt at South Florida and have dropped to 8-9 in the Big East. Cincy has a must win game against Seton Hall and then needs a couple of wins in the Big East tournament to have any chance.
Other losers: Providence, Arizona, Virginia Tech, Wisconsin, Boston College, Miami (FL), Maryland, Kansas St.