The Big Ten finally took home bragging honors in the Big Ten/ACC challenge after falling short the past ten years. No wonder Magic is smiling.
The Big Ten did not thrash the ACC, as the winner of the challenge remained very much in doubt until the closing seconds of Wisconsin’s thrilling upset win over No. 6 Duke.
On the heels of winning the challenge, many Big Ten fans began to wonder how many teams will make it to the big dance. How sweet would the bragging rights be for Big Ten fans if the Big Ten qualified more teams for the tournament than any other conference?
Last year, the NCAA selection committee awarded only two at-large bids to teams with less than 20 wins. The two teams were Wisconsin (19-12) and Arizona (19-13).
Eight teams from the Big Ten finished .500 or better in conference play. Penn State, 10-8 in conference, was the only team to finish better than .500 and not make the tournament.
In assessing the likelihood of each team making the tournament, there are three questions fans should therefore be asking when examining the resumes of their favorite team...
Which remaining non-conference games do they need to win?
Assuming the team takes care of its non-conference schedule, do they need to finish .500 or better in conference play to secure an NCAA bid?
Can they finish .500 or better?