This is a cross-post of the newsletter. Eventually, based on circumstances, either this or that will become the primary mode of journalism and commentary.
The basketball hype coming into this weekend centered around the UAB-North Texas game. It was shaping up to be a battle between a couple of programs destined to challenge for the league’s crown in Frisco, and could have determined some at-large fates. Bracketology is a cottage industry and we will not begin speculation about what this means in terms of selections long term.
- Middle 10-3
- Western 9-6
- FAU 8-6
- Charlotte 7-7
- FIU 5-9
- ODU 5-9
- Marshall 3-11
- NT 13-1
- UAB 10-4
- Tech 10-4
- UTEP 9-5
- Rice 6-8
- UTSA 2-13
- USM 1-12
NT 58 UAB 57
Tylor Perry hit that three in Trey Jemison’s face to take the lead in Bartow Arena and put NT in the conversation for an at-large bid. The regular season title for North Texas is all but sealed up, and more importantly the bye week is secured. UAB has a chance for revenge in Frisco, setting up some drama in the bracket.
Tech 95 UTSA 71
Keason Willis left a potential game-tying three short vs UTEP on Thursday, but put up 30 points vs a terrible UTSA squad. The is firmly third, but has a chance to sneak into second and get that bye. Do not sleep on whoever finishes third in this division.
UTEP 84 USM 70
Good week for UTEP, as they went to TAC and beat Tech, and then beat up on USM. Miners are within striking distance of second, if things swing their way.
Middle 87 FAU 79
A less-heralded game of the top two in the east saw Middle assert dominance and FAU dropping the second of two opportunity games. They went 0-2 this week, and blowing chances to make a statement. Now they are third in the division. Mike Forrest had rough game in a rough week.
Rice 78 FIU 80
Oh man how about the bottom-dwelling FIU jumping up and beating Rice. The Owls are not nearly as good as they were last year, and are falling apart a bit.
ODU 64 WKU 73
The Monarchs looked dangerous as they upset UAB, but then lost to Marshall. Now they get beat by Western. It seemed a fluke, and is proving to be one.
Charlotte 99 Marshall 84
The 49ers took care of business as Jahmir Young had 21 on the way to a relatively easy win.
The Game Of The Week
Over on MGN there is a tick-tock of the happenings.. You’ve no-doubt saw the shot but I want to point out a couple of things:
- North Texas stayed in the game mentally. They got dealt a knock-out-type blow in that 11-0 run that had the house rocking. Instead, NT found McBride for three, Perry for another three, and finally the game-winner.
- Jelly Walker missed a free throw, got blocked on an ill-advised shot, and lost Perry on one of the threes.
- Perry was fouled by Jemison on that game-winner and that probably was going to not be called. It was not the best performance by the refs. Felt a little like the Super Bowl where they didn’t call pass-interference all game and suddenly it was the most important call ever on the final drive.
- Stadium had a good broadcast.
If the conference tournament started today:
W6 vs W7 — UTSA vs USM
E6 vs E7 — ODU vs Marshall
W4 vs E5 — UTEP vs FIU
E3 vs W6/7 — Marshall vs UTSA/USM
E4 vs W5 — CLT vs Rice
W3 vs E6/7 — La Tech vs ODU/Marshall
E1 vs W4/E5 — Middle vs UTEP/FIU
W2 vs E3/W6/7 — UAB vs Mashall/UTSA/USM
W1 vs E4/W5 — NT vs UTEP/FIU
E2 vs W3/E6/7 — Western vs Tech/ODU/Marshall
Middle/UTEP/FIU vs UAB/Marshall/UTSA/USM
NT/UTEP/FIU vs Western/Tech/ODU/Marshall
If that is confusing, well do not worry as the brackets will be revealed in a couple of weeks.