I’ve written it a few times before, but last night gave us all the proof we need to know that Warren Buffet’s Billion Dollar Bracket Challenge is a fool’s errand; no one, and I repeat NO ONE, can have any clue who is going to the Final Four right now because there are about 40 teams that seem pretty close to even on any given night.
Last night a whopping five ranked teams lost to unranked opponents, and when I say “unranked” we are talking about teams getting a few votes, we are talking about teams that are UNRANKED. Ohio State loses to Penn State, Memphis loses to Houston, and the biggest stunner was St. Louis’s 19 game winning streak snapped with a home loss to Duquesne. By the numbers, you can make the case that is the single WORST loss in the country this season. Considering Syracuse was the only top 20 team in the country to lose to a team outside of the Top 150 prior to last night, and Duquesne is now 182 in the RPI AFTER winning at St. Louis, and you have a good candidate for loss of the year.
So does this finally get Wichita State the appreciation they so richly deserve? Winning is hard. Winning every single game is nearly impossible, no matter what conference one plays in. Let’s not be shocked if the Shockers once again make their way to the Final Four.
It’s Friday, so not a ton of the board to choose from, so let’s hone in one the only game with Tourney implications, a bubble-busting Big East clash.
Today’s Free Picks:
Providence Friars at Seton Hall Pirates -2.5
It’s do-or-die time for the Friars. They enter the game at 18-10 but just 8-7 in conference. The Big East is good and very jumbled in the middle, but it is hard to see a team with a .500 or worse league record getting a bid to the tourney. That makes tonight’s road trip to Jersey a vital one.
Seton Hall is reduced to the role of spoiler at this point. Three weeks ago they were a bubble candidate but seven losses in nine games have wiped those dreams away. They are just 14-14 and a miserable 5-10 in conference.
I’m going to take Bryce Cotton to continue hos dominant scoring efforts and to carry the Friars to a win they absolutely have to have. The road team is 12-5 ATS in the last 17 meetings in this series, so it certainly isn’t out of the realm of possibility for the better team to win away from home tonight.
Providence hasn’t been great away from home this season, but if you look at their road losses they are all against the top teams in the league; Villanova, St. John’s, Xavier, etc. I think Seton Hall is a clear rung below those three and will fall tonight.