In yesterday's Dribble.. I ranked all 73 BCS teams.. from UCLA to Colorado. I got a nice response about that list.. so I decided to do a ranking of the top "mid-major" leagues, ie, the 2nd tier leagues. The 2nd tier compromises the 62 teams of the A10, CAA, CUSA, MVC, MWC, and WAC. This leaves out the Horizon and the WCC which are the next in line. The Horizon actually has a higher overall RPI than the CAA right now, but this is based almost solely on Butler's hot start. No other HL team is in the top 110, but the CAA has 4 teams in the top 90.
1. Air Force 6-1 19-2
2. Memphis 6-0 16-3
Last year, when I had more time on my hands, I tried to predict just about every game during the week. I just went with my guy, and quickly picked all the winners regardless of the spread, and I'd usually come out with a 75-80% success rate. Saturday was the type of day that made predicting games so fun. 21 of the Top 25 teams are in action.. not to mention dozens of other great games.
Even though its only noon here in the Central Time Zone, there's already one major upset in the works. CAA leading Hofstra is losing to 4-12 Northeastern by 10 with 10 minutes to go. The Pride are coming off a huge overtime win at Drexel, their biggest win of the year. Hofstra's struggled away from home all year, but apparently they thrive in Philly, as they've beaten both Drexel and St. Joseph's. With VCU hosting a very beatable Towson team, the Pride could fall a game back in the standings.
Now that conference play has begun in earnest, it is worth taking a look back at the first half of the season and determining who has benefited the most, and the least, from the 2006-07 non-conference schedule.
This is dedication.. 11:30 on a Saturday night, and I'm not out on the town, but in on the computer writing the Dribble.. or is it just being lame? I'll leave it up to you to decide..
I already wrote an earlier entry this afternoon, which includes thoughts on Virginia Tech's big upset of Duke. The rest of my afternoon and evening was spent watching the NFL Playoffs.. so unfortunately I didn't get to watch some of the day's later upsets.
The only game I did get a peak at was Air Force's 56-50 win over UNLV. At 15-1, the Academy is off to its bes start ever.. while UNLV drops to 14-3. This game was surprising because you think of both of these teams as being dangerous from three, but no one could hit from outside. UNLV was 1-18 from three, and AFA was 3-12. Kevin Kruger, averaging 14 ppg and coming off an 8-three game against Utah, was ice cold and finished with 4 points on 1-9 shooting. Who know.. maybe if he was hot, this game would have had a different ending. Regardless, it was close because UNLV dominated on the interior.. getting 38 rebounds to just 19 for Air Force. Essengue and White really had their way on the inside. Overall, it was a well-fought though not necessarily very well played game. The only player that stood out was AFA's Dan Nwaelele. This isn't a name that you hear often nationally, but it should be. Nwaelele leads the team at 15 ppg as a 6-5 small forward, and amazingly does it by shooting 62% from the floor and 56% from three. As good as those numbers are, you can't help but think the senior could be even better. With a solid 6-5 frame, and that nice shooting touch, this is a guy who should be getting an outside look by NBA scouts. Unfortunately, the color commentator was quick to point Nwaelele should shoot more, and a dozen other things he knew was right. I kept trying to figure out who this know-it-all was.. than they finally said it was Rick Barry.. and suddenly the condescending tone made perfect sense.
Dan Nwaelele and Jason Smith win the weekly MWC honor.
Ohio State's 98-89 loss to UNC is one of the few times I can remember a #1 team losing.. but actually gaining respect. The Buckeyes came out smoking, hitting three's left and right and finished with 13 bombs on the night. Ron Lewis finished with a career high 30 points and Dickie Dolittle was suddenly touting him as a future NBA star. The play of freshmen Wayne Ellington and Tywon Lawson keyed UNC's big 2nd half. Lawson continues to show why he is UNC's best option at point guard.
Marist continues to impress, picking up a 13 point win over Old Dominion. Star point guard Jared Jordan, the nation's leader in assists, was 2 rebounds shy of a rare college triple double. He ended up with 26 points, 10 assists, and 8 boars.
- Bracketology: Selection Sunday Projection
- Bracketology: Saturday Night NCAA Tournament Projection
- Non-BCS Top 25: Creighton, Colorado St Rise
- College Basketball Top 50: Indiana Ends Regular Season #1
- Non-BCS Top 25: Valpo Replaces BYU
- College Basketball Top 50: Maryland and Iowa St Drop Out
- Non-BCS Top 25: Davidson In, Wyoming Out
- College Basketball Top 50: #2 Gonzaga Hits All-Time High
- Non-BCS Top 25: Air Force, Davidson Making Moves
- College Basketball Top 50: Another Week, Another #1