Bubble Games to Watch: March 6
It was a very busy day and night in College Basketball. The big news of the day is sentencing took place yesterday in the FBI pay-for-play case. Adidas exec James Gatto received a 9 month sentence while Merl Code and Christian Dawkins received 6 months each. We also had the Patriot League, the Big South, and the Horizon League getting their tournaments underway as well. Not to mention the games that actually happened last night. Duke barely survived at home against Wake on a shot that I thought was in and somehow rattled out. Kamar Baldwin was great in Butler’s win over Xavier, Minnesota picked up a massive win over Purdue, Oklahoma dominated Kansas from the start to end the Jayhawks’ reign in the Big 12, and Auburn outlasted the Tide in Tuscaloosa. Outside of the bubble teams in action tonight we also have two more conference tourneys getting under way with the NEC and Ohio Valley.
16 Marquette at Seton Hall 5:30pm CT FS1
Marquette was in the driver’s seat heading into this past weekend despite the loss to Villanova. They needed a win over Creighton to stay ahead of the Wildcats in the standings, well, they lost and now are half a game back with two to play. Their first is at a desperate Seton Hall team that has really been struggling lately. Myles Powell was phenomenal against Georgetown, but he was pretty much the only one that came to play. He had 35 of his team’s 71 points and hit 4 of the team’s 5 threes. This is a big game for both teams, a win should put the Pirates in the NCAA Tournament, while a loss would end Marquette’s shot at an outright Big East title.
10 LSU at Florida 6pm CT ESPN 2
How good has LSU been? Tremont Waters hasn’t been healthy and played limited minutes this past weekend and they’re still winning games. It is impressive to see. The Tigers are half a games behind Tennessee in the SEC Title race and can keep pace with a win against the Gators. Florida is coming off a bad loss at home to Georgia that has them looking for another quality win to stamp on top of their resume. This would be the game they can use. All hope is not lost if Florida can’t win this one, they travel to Rupp this weekend, but LSU at home sounds a lot easier than Kentucky on the road.
Providence at Creighton 7pm CT CBSSN
Creighton is a caught pass, land, and miracle heave all in 0.9 seconds away from having a season sweep over Marquette. The Bluejays were strong this weekend winning in Milwaukee and turning the Golden Eagles over 22 times. When the ball doesn’t stick, this team is very good offensively.
Georgetown at DePaul 7:30pm CT FS1
Despite Jessie Govan struggling mightily in regulation and going nearly 7 minutes in the first half without scoring, Georgetown was able to outlast Seton Hall on Saturday night in DC. The win keeps the Hoyas alive in a quest to get back to the NCAA Tournament. They have the task of heading to Chicago to play DePaul, who just put up 92 points against St. John’s this past weekend. Max Strus had a career game against the Johnnies with 43 points. This team has the bigs to matchup with Georgetown and the guard play to cause the young backcourt problems.
Ohio State at Northwestern 8pm CT BTN
It’s pretty simple for Ohio State, forget what happened against Purdue and just win the game in whatever fashion is necessary. The Buckeyes currently sit at 8-10 in Big Ten play and getting to 10-10 would be huge. It starts in Evanston against a shaky Northwestern team. Kaleb Wesson is out for this game so someone will have to handle Pardon down low for the Buckeyes.
Clemson at Notre Dame 8pm CT ESPNU
A golden opportunity slipped away from the Tigers this weekend as they lost to North Carolina by 2. The win would have propelled this team safely into the NCAA Tournament field, but instead it has left them searching for more wins. A win over Notre Dame won’t move the needle but a loss would be a devastating blow to Clemson’s resume. A loss would turn their game against Syracuse into a must win.
Georgia Tech at NC State 8pm CT ACC Network
Even though they have 20 wins, NC State is firmly on the bubble because they have one quality win and that team has fallen far since that game. They beat Auburn a ways back in the non-conference and the Tigers’ season hasn’t exactly lived up to the preseason hype they had. All this talk about quality wins and the Pack are playing Georgia Tech…yeah not going to help the resume there, but it will certainly hurt. Their schedule is soft to finish the season so a pair of wins to close and NC State still probably needs another win in the ACC tourney to feel comfortable.