Saturday, February 25, 2006

Do or Die Time

Teams only have 2-3 more chances to improve their seeding in the conference tournament. The top 4 teams in the ACC and the top 2 in each division of the SEC will get an all important bye in the first round.

Other teams are fighting to stay on the bubble and give themselves a chance to make the NCAA Tournament. In the ACC, a couple of bubble teams travel to teams fighting for NIT berths. Virginia plays a very important at Clemson, while FSU travels to Virginia Tech in hopes of improving their postseason hopes. In the SEC, two bubble teams face tough challenges by going on the road to face division leaders. Arkansas travel to Knoxville to face the Vols, who are fresh off the defeat of Florida on Wednesday. Meanwhile, Tubby's Cats travel to LSU and are hoping to bring with them the momentum off two straight resounding victories.

Season: 68-24

Boston College @ NC State 3:45 CBS-split
The Eagles travel to NC State in hopes of gaining a season split after the Wolfpack won in Boston early in the season. Evtimov should be playing for the Wolfpack (he missed the last two games). Both teams were beat badly this week so no advantage there. I like NC State at home to win in a "tournament-like game".
Prediction: NC State

Kentucky @ LSU 3:45 CBS-split
LSU bounced back with a win at Vandy after some lackluster games previously. Kentucky is playing some of its best basketball of the season the last two games. LSU knows they are in, while Kentucky still needs to win a few. I like LSU at home as they are the better team, but I expect Kentucky to give them a very good game.
Prediction: LSU

Arkansas @ Tennessee 1:00 JP-split
The Vols are favorites here, but not by as much as I would have expected (-5). After sweeping the Gators, the Vols are a legit Top 10 team. Their pressing defense and outside shooting is too much for the Stan Heath's Razorbacks.
Prediction: Tennessee

Vanderbilt @ South Carolina 1:00 JP-split
The loser of this game will have to win the conference tournament to get in. South Carolina lost in an ugly game at Georgia on Thursday night and may be a little bit tired, but I like them at home.
Prediction: South Carolina

Duke @ Temple 2:30 ESPN
Duke survived a horrible shooting night by JJ Redick and lackluster defensive effort this week. Temple will be pumped for this game, but Duke has too much talent.
Prediction: Duke

Georgia @ Miss St 5:00
Probably one of the best games of the day, but it features two teams in the lower half of the SEC. Georgia has more to play for than Mississippi St right now. I like the Dawgs in a mild upset.
Prediction: Georgia

Wake Forest @ Georgia Tech 1:00 ABC
A battle of two teams having very down years after much recent success. Wake finally got their second conference in overtime this past week. Tech has been playing much better and their 11 conference losses is not indicative of how good this team could be.
Prediction: Georgia Tech

Auburn @ Ole Miss 8:30 Fox Sports
Ole Miss is again without their best player for this game. Still, they should be able to pull this one out at home versus Auburn.
Prediction: Ole Miss

Virginia @ Clemson 2:00
Virginia should be sky high after destroying BC at home on Tuesday. Clemson has been in a downward spiral that started with a 1 point home loss to VT. Still, the Cavs have made their living at home this season and have struggled on the road.
Prediction: Clemson

Florida State @ Virginia Tech 7:00
This could be the best game of the day. VT is much better than their conference record shows. FSU is another team which has run up victories at home, but struggled on the road. I like VT in a very close game.
Prediction: Virginia Tech

Ranking my Picks:
1. Duke
2. Tennessee
3. LSU
4. South Carolina
5. Georgia Tech
6. NC State
7. Clemson
8. Ole Miss
9. Virginia Tech

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