Just thought I'd run through this weekend's slate of Big XII games to see how things may play out leading into the Big XII Tournament.
Baylor at Texas Tech - Bigger game for Baylor as they could use another win to improve their Big Dance resume, plus a chance at that coveted 4th seed and first round buy in the Big XII tournament if OU and A&M lose.
Tech's basically playing for a potential 7th seed if OSU loses to Texas or as low as a 9th seed if they end up tied with Nebraska at 7-9 as they lost the only head-to-head match-up with the Cornhuskers. But being 8th or 9th really doesn't matter in the Big XII tournament.
Prediction: Give me Tech at home even though Scott Drew said the Bears would take care of business in Lubbock. That'll only fire Tech up more and make Baylor play tighter.
Update [2008-3-8 15:53:14 by 54b]: Wow, Scott Drew proves prophetic with Baylor's 86-73 win in Lubbock. Tech's sharp shooter Voskuil was no where to found and oh, neither were the Red Raider fans. Spring Break is an underrated equalizer when it comes to giving away your home court advantage. With the win, Baylor still has a chance at the 4-seed and more importantly, helped make a bigger claim for a spot in the Dance. 9-7 in conference just looks a lot better than 8-8 anyday.
Missouri at Oklahoma - OU's pretty much in the same boat as Baylor. A win helps the Dance resume and pretty much assures them of the 4th seed as they beat Baylor both times this year and they have a better South Division record than A&M even though they split games with the Aggies.
As for Mizzou, no real motivation here as they can only improve from a 10th seed to a 9th seed with a Nebraska loss. Even if Tech and OSU lose, the Tigers lost to both of those teams in the head-to-heads. If they end up tied with Nebraska conf. record-wise, I believe they'll get the nod because they have a better North Division record.
Prediction: - Closer than people think, but I'll go with OU. They've got the momentum after the win in Stillwater and may have Blake Griffin back.
Update [2008-3-8 18:10:37 by 54b]:: OU takes care of business at home and wraps up the coveted 4-seed in the Big XII tourney. Even though Baylor won, OU took both games from the Bears and get to take Thursday off.
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Kansas at A&M - The biggin' of the day for sure. I'll say it's a bigger game for A&M if they plan on Dancin' in March. But I think the best they can do is a 5th seed in the Big XII tourney. They lost to K-State head-to-head and they don't have a better South Division record than OU. But if they end up with the same conf. record as Baylor, I believe they get the nod with a better South Division record than the Bears.
As for KU, a win assures them of at least a tie for the regular season conf. title. A win and a loss by Texas gives it to them outright and the #1 seed in the conf. tourney. Plus, they may also still be in the hunt for a #1 seed in the Dance.
Prediction: Tough call, but give me KU. Just some bad mojo surrounding the Aggies after the ugliness in Waco and I'm predicting that poetic justice will be served when KU's front court puts on a dunk contest at the end of the game with a double digit lead.
Update [2008-3-8 18:13:31 by 54b]:: Poetic justice served, KU in a walk 72-55. Now Texas must win to share the regular season crown and keep the #1 seed.
Kansas State at Iowa State - Bigger game for K-State. A win sews up the 3-seed in the conf. tourney for the Cats. A loss and a Baylor win could drop them to a 4th seed. But with head-to-head wins over OU and A&M, I don't believe they can drop any lower than a 4-seed win or lose today.
As for ISU, if they lose and CU wins, they could drop to the 12th seed as CU would have a better North Division record.
Prediction: ISU...I think K-State takes this game off.
Update [2008-3-8 18:10:37 by 54b]:: Nope, K-State pulls it out on the road 73-69 and locks up the 3-seed.
Colorado at Nebraska - Nothing really at stake. Nebraska can't get any higher than an 8th seed which plays the 9th seed anyway. They could drop to 10th if Mizzou beats OU. As for CU, they could improve to an 11th seed, but only with an ISU loss.
Prediction: Nebraska...I liked how they looked in Austin Tuesday night and they've got the home court over a struggling CU team.
Oklahoma State at Texas - Much bigger for UT...with the win, the Horns are assured of at least a tie for the regular season title and the #1 seed in the Big XII Tourney. A KU loss to A&M means UT can win the conf. outright.
Even if A&M, Baylor, and OU all lost and OSU won giving them identical 8-8 conf. records, they could only jump Baylor as their South Division record is worse than A&M and they lost both games with OU.
Prediction: Give me Texas at home...I think OSU will play hard, but they'll be playing with a fork in'em after having their bubble burst by OU a few days ago.
Predicted Big XII Finish and Conference Tourney seeding:
- A&M Update [2008-3-8 18:20:7 by 54b]:: Baylor moves up to take the 5th seed.
- Baylor Update [2008-3-8 18:20:7 by 54b]:: A&M slips to the 6 seed and will stay there even if OSU wins tomorrow as the Ags have a better South Division record.