Tuesday, February 14, 2017

News On The Horizon 2/14/2017

Valparaiso beats Youngstown State 82-72--CBS Sports
My big weekend wrapup: Gonzaga will finish the regular season undefeated--Mid-Major Madness
Stock Falling:

Green Bay: It’s become clear that nobody has much interest in challenging Valparaiso in the Horizon League. After we decided that Green Bay was a possibility, the Phoenix decided to drop two straight and three out of five. Do we dare turn our attention to...Oakland? Nah, jk.
1976-77 Men’s Basketball Team Receives John Conti Award--detroittitans.com

Marinkovic Earns Third Freshman of the Week Honor--detroittitans.com
Chill in the air--Whoosh! Net
Dominique Matthews Wins Horizon League Honor--uicflames.com
Mid-Major Stock Watch: This is ONLY February--Mid-Major Madness

Green Bay: After their win against Valparaiso, the Phoenix had a chance to make their move in the Horizon League. They didn’t, losing their following two games, and they now trail the Crusaders by 2.5 games in the standings. With two road games coming, they’ll need to get back in the win column to maintain their positioning for the Horizon League tournament.
Lindner Earns Horizon League Honors--mkepanthers.com
Bracketology: Committee delivers ACC message--College Basketball Talk
W-4 BP68--Basketball Predictions
Hoop Thoughts: The Wonderer ponders college basketball's burning questions--Sports Illustrated
. . . whether any of the top mid-majors will get an at-large bid

During our midseason bracket preview show on CBS over the weekend, I asked RPI guru Jerry Palm if he thought Middle Tennessee would be able to get an at-large if it doesn’t win the Conference USA tournament. I assumed they would because he assigned the Blue Raiders a No. 11 seed, but he was pretty emphatic that the answer was no. His logic was also sound. Middle Tennessee may be 21–4, but its only top-50 win came on a neutral court against UNC-Wilmington, and it has three losses to teams ranked below 100 in the RPI—including a loss at No. 301 UTEP on Feb. 4. Any loss the Blue Raiders suffer in the conference tournament would be another bad loss. That will not stack up well against other at-large candidates.

The same is true for Wichita State, which is ranked 48th in the RPI and 16th on kenpom.com but also owns just one top-50 win, at home over Illinois State. And Illinois State’s only top-50 win was at home over Wichita State. All of this does not bode well for teams like Vermont, UNC-Wilmington, Valparaiso, Monmouth, Akron, Nevada, Belmont and New Mexico State. It’s too bad, because all of those teams are capable of winning a first-round game. But they can’t do that if they’re not in the tournament.
. . . whether Alec Peters is going to get to play in the NCAA tournament

I’ve really enjoyed watching the 6' 9" senior forward develop into an outstanding player during his four years at Valparaiso. Peters is now the school’s alltime leading scorer, and his 23.1 scoring average ranks fifth in the country. Peters had a chance to turn pro last year but came back for his senior season, even though his coach, Bryce Drew, whose school scoring record he broke, had left for Vanderbilt. Yes, Peters made a business decision to come back and improve his draft stock, but I’m hoping that his commitment to his school is rewarded with a chance to show what he can do on the game’s biggest stage.
Mid-Major Madness Power Rankings: Things are getting WAC-ky--Mid-Major Madness
9 Valparaiso 21-5 15 119
Cameron Morse Named Horizon League Player of the Week--ysusports.com
Horizon League Men's Basketball Players of the Week (Feb. 13)--The Horizon League

Horizon League Women's Basketball Players of the Week (Feb. 13)--The Horizon League

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