Welcome to A10Talk’s series of Atlantic 10 Bracketology. Throughout the year we’ll be providing updates on where teams stand in regards to making the NCAA Tournament. Lets take a look at this week’s edition.
Saint Louis (7-3)
Falling to undefeated and nationally ranked Houston by a final score of 68-64 on Sunday, Saint Louis did nothing to change its NCAA tournament positioning last week. With no bad losses (as of now) and quality wins over Seton Hall, Butler, and Oregon State, the Billikens are on track to make the tournament. As long as Saint Louis takes care of business against NCCU on Wednesday, the Billikens will be playing with house money versus No. 11 Florida State come Saturday. While a loss to the Seminoles certainly would not put Saint Louis out of at-large position, a win could help increase the Billikens’ potential seeding tremendously.
On The Bubble
Davidson (8-3), Duquesne (8-2)
After dropping back to back close games against Temple and Wake Forest, Davidson has fallen onto the at-large bubble. Without star guard Kellan Grady in both tough losses, the Wildcats missed out on two opportunities to pick up solid wins. Nevertheless, Davidson is yet to suffer a bad loss and the Wildcats have a huge game on the horizon against North Carolina. Take care of business this week and the focus will shift to Davidson’s major road test against the Tar Heels.
Taking care of business last week, Duquesne continues to hover around the tournament bubble. Despite holding an 8-2 record with no bad losses, the Dukes are still in search of a signature win. That makes Wednesday night’s game against Penn State a must win. While beating a 5-5 Nittany Lions squad probably won’t turn out to be a high quality win, it would give Duquesne’s resume some much needed credibility. In order to stay in the NCAA tournament at-large conversation, the Dukes need to win their final three games of non-conference play.
VCU (7-4), Rhode Island (5-3)
After beating Texas on the road last week, VCU dropped a close game at home on Saturday night. Falling to Charleston by a final score of 83-79, the loss put quite a damper on the Rams at-large hopes. If VCU wants to keep its NCAA tournament hopes alive, the Rams must bounce back and beat Wichita State this week. The Rhode Island Rams, on the other hand, played their best game of the season on Sunday. Upsetting West Virginia 83-70, Rhode Island picked up a signature non-conference win. If URI handles business against Bucknell this week, the Rams could begin creeping towards the bubble.
Better Luck Next Year
Fordham (8-3), UMass (6-5), Dayton (5-5), Saint Joseph’s (5-5), George Mason (5-6), Richmond (4-6), Saint Bonaventure (4-6), George Washington (3-8), La Salle (0-10)
While Fordham playing better than expected, the Rams three losses are bad enough to kill any tournament hopes. Dayton, on the other hand, is yet to suffer a bad loss despite falling short in five contests. The Flyers also picked up a quality win over Butler earlier in the season. That said, Dayton missed out on too many non-conference opportunities to give itself a shot at an at-large bid. If the Flyers had been able to hold on against Oklahoma, Mississippi State, or Tulsa, their resume would look a whole lot different right now. Barring a magical 15-3 run in A-10 play, Dayton will have to win the conference tournament in order to make the Big Dance this year.
As for teams like UMass, Saint Joseph’s, and George Mason, I don’t think anyone should could out their chances of making a run in the A-10 tournament. All three of these teams have the talent to get hot and make a run in Brooklyn. However, with five losses apiece already, their chances of receiving an at-large big are shot.
Richmond, Saint Bonaventure, George Washington, and La Salle, better luck next year guys. Oh and La Salle, please win your final non-conference game. Alabama A&M is winless too so it really should not be that much to ask.
Featured Image Via David Carson