Dayton went into Thursday night's game at Richmond knowing that they needed a tough win, especially on the road, to improve their resume in regards to a possible at-large bid. Having dropped six games by four points or less (five of which came on the road) they needed to find some way in which to reverse that luck. All they were able to do is add another line to the list, losing 60-56 at Robins Center despite out-rebounding the Spiders 44-25 on the night. The issues for Dayton have been two-fold and Thursday night was simply the most recent example.
It's tough enough for most teams to manage the emotions that come with Senior Night; what happens when you add in a conference title and a team that's beaten you six straight times? If you're Greivis Vasquez and company all that meant on Wednesday night was the opportunity to show the nation that you can play with a highly-touted Duke team that blew you out in the first meeting this season.
In regards to bubble teams Wednesday saw a lot of teams leave the door open for someone to sneak in and grab an at-large bid, and it's made quite the case why we're just fine with sixty-five teams. But with this arguably being the weakest bubble pool in the 64/65 era there are ample opportunities for teams seemingly off the radar to sneak in and grab a bid. One of those teams is Dayton, who visits a Richmond team that looks to be a safe bet for the Big Dance.
Bad news hit West Lafayette and Columbia on Thursday afternoon, with Purdue's Robbie Hummel and Missouri's Justin Safford both going down for the remainder of the season with torn ACLs. The more important ligament on a national level: clearly that would be Hummel's, and his injury could be the difference in seed lines for the Boilermakers. Many have used Kenyon Martin's broken leg back in 2000 as the comparison to Purdue losing Hummel, but that's a bit off when you further examine the cases.
What goes into a 40-point performance? A hot hand, superstitions and a good matchup are just three of the things that have been cited in the past. That accomplishment actually occured twice this past weekend, with Washington State's Klay Thompson and Mercer's James Florence doing the honors. While many already know about Thompson the Mercer senior guard from Marietta, GA hasn't received that kind of attention. Florence returned to school as the nation's leading senior returning scorer and is currently averaging 22.8 points and 4.2 assists per game.
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