INDIANAPOLIS – This group of Butler seniors have been ranked since the third week of this season, were ranked most of last year, won last year’s Pre-season NIT, won this year’s Great Alaskan Shootout, knocked off Ohio State, Maryland, Purdue, Tennessee, Michigan, Texas Tech, Gonzaga, Notre Dame, Virginia Tech and Florida State over the last two years, but they never have cut down the nets in the Horizon League Championship.
They can now cross that off of their to-do list since they beat Cleveland State tonight in the Horizon League Championship on their home court 70-55.
by Joel Welser
Big Wins: 11/24 vs Texas Tech (81-71), 12/1 Ohio State (65-46), 12/15 vs Florida State (79-68),
Bubble time is not only a fun time, but its a testy time.. after all, everybody wants their favorite team to make the Big Dance. Thus the amount of emails I gets grew substantially since this year's Daily Bracketology started. In honor of some of the better, and more repeated emails, here are some reader questions and responses (edited slightly to fit into an article)..
INDIANAPOLIS -- The script worked out just like it was planned. The 14th ranked team in the country and #1 seed hosting the semifinal game pounds their opponent into submission to play in the championship game on their court Tuesday night.
Butler became the sixth straight number one seed to advance to the Horizon League Championship game by beating University of Illinois-Chicago 66-50.
This started out pretty well for UIC (18-15) as they jumped out to a 4-0 lead on a layup by Robert Bush and a lob from Stewart Spencer resulting in a thunderous dunk by Jermaine Dailey.
INDIANAPOLIS – When Valparaiso beat Wright State yesterday for the third time this year, three was the magic number. Tonight three was the magic number for Cleveland State as they beat Valpo for the third time this season 78-73 to advance to the Horizon League Championship game.
Cleveland State started the game on fire going up 10-2 at the 17:09 mark. At that point Valpo (21-13) looked like a team was playing for the second time in 24 hours. Their shots were falling a little short and they seemed to be a step behind the Cleveland State players.
When a team doesn’t shoot well, doesn’t rebound well and doesn’t shoot free throws very well there is a pretty good chance they are not going to win that night and that describes Loyola in their loss to UIC in the quarterfinals 60-49.
Loyola (12-19) shot a poor 38.3 percent (18-47), only made 56.3 percent (9-16) and then got killed on the boards 36-20.
INDIANAPOLIS –There is a stick that Valparaiso has used three times this year to beat Wright State with and the Raiders are on the short end of it as they lost their third game in a row to the Crusaders 72-67 in the quarterfinals of the Horizon League Championship.
Earlier this year at Wright State, Valpo pulled out a 71-67 win and then last Saturday on ESPN2 Valpo beat the Raiders in overtime 75-73.
The “Curse” has returned…Kent State, Indiana and Stephen F. Austin all lost last week in games that they should have won…okay, maybe not the Hoosiers. But still, all the good vibes that last week’s “Stretch” gave these teams is now gone. So, who will be given the “kiss of death” this week?
Seven Day Savior (Team): New Mexico Lobos
A - Luke Harangody
Here’s a quick preview of the ESPNU O’Reilly Bracket Busters games this weekend that will not be shown on television involving northeast teams. In most cases, the organizers of this event have done a better job of limiting the travel for non-television games, with the exception of UC Davis visiting Loyola (MD) among games involving northeast leagues. Bracket Busters, originally put together to provide schools in non-BCS leagues one last opportunity to add to their resume, now involves some 100 schools from sixteen conferences.
Niagara @ Appalachian State (Saturday, 1 PM)