How many bids will come out of the Pac-10 this year? There's a distinct possibility of the conference receiving just one bid to the NCAA Tournament given the unimpressive resumes of its primary contenders. And that essentially means the entire league with ten teams separated by just two games in the standings. However, the winner of Thursday's matchup between California and Washington in Berkeley will go a long way towards deciding who's got the inside track for the automatic bid.
For SEC fans, the 2009 NBA Draft was about as exciting as watching paint dry.
Quality wins: North Carolina, Connecticut, Indiana
Postseason prediction: NCAA Final Four
When John Calipari left Memphis for Kentucky, Big Blue Nation went crazy. They had a coach who would bring top recruits with him, freshmen who would make an impact on a team immediately. This hadn’t been seen since the Fab Four at Michigan, 20 years before. The entire landscape of the SEC changed, as Kentucky appeared to be the overwhelming favorite for the first time in what has seemed like forever. Two teams overlooked in the whole Calipari situation face off Wednesday night. UTEP, under Cal apprentice Tony Barbee, boast a 5-1 record.
After two days of lean schedules and fodder for major-conference teams we've finally got some games on the schedule that can hold one's interest for more than a half. A game that will likely have long-lasting effects is UTEP taking on Ole Miss at the DeSoto Civic Center in Southaven, Miss. The Miners will have Louisville transfer Derrick Caracter for his second game and you've got to wonder how this will pay off for head coach Tony Barbee when it comes to team chemistry.
Betting odds are a great guide to college basketball entertainment. Unlike fans, who often ride the wave of media predictions, betting lines tend to be a bit more focused and can give you an objective picture of how teams matchup (though lines too can get caught up in the wave of human emotion).
A new era of Kentucky basketball begins, but will the likes of Mississppi St, Tennesse, or Vanderbilt spoil John Calipari's entrance. Perhaps no league is loaded with NBA talent like the SEC.
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