Weekend Bubble Teams At Work
IT’S MARCH, AND SO WHY NOT SOME MADNESS
THIS WEEKEND AS WE CHECK OUT
TEAMS THAT TRULY FACE “MUST-WIN” SITUATIONS …
NFL COMBINE/NFL FREE AGENT NEWS & NOTES TOO
Whose “bubbles” are gonna burst this weekend?
No doubt there are a slew of prospective NCAA Tournament teams that are just itching to get into this year’s “Big Dance” but the quartet of squads we list below in today’s edition of Jim Sez are in “must-win” modes this weekend and maybe even have to win a game or two in their respective conference tournaments next week.
The rundown of “bubble teams” that absolutely/positively must win this weekend are as follows – there’s four of ‘em in all right here:
WAKE FOREST (17-12, 8-9) – Okay, so two weeks ago we probably wouldn’t even have had the WF Demon Deacons on our “bubble team” list but then recent back-to-back wins against Pittsburgh and Louisville breathed life back into this ACC squad and now a win at Virginia Tech on Saturday likely gets Danny Manning’s team into the NCAA Tourney party. Note the solid RPI ranking (#40) but keep in mind the Deacs didn’t win any big road games and the non-conference sked is weak. Still a “W” here in Blacksburg probably allows the ACC to get 10 teams into the tourney field.
KANSAS STATE (18-12, 7-10) – Gotta admit that we’ve been going back-and-forth on whether or not these K-State Wildcats deserve an NCAA at-large bid considering the losing record inside the Big 12 and the wobbly non-league schedule that did include a one-point loss to Maryland. Still. Bruce Weber’s crew did best host TCU the other night – a Jim Hurley winner on Wednesday night! – and did win at Baylor and Texas too this year. Get this one on Saturday against visiting Texas Tech and the ‘Cats are probably in … get this one against T-Tech and then a first-round win in the Big 12 Tournament and it’s a lead-pipe cinch!
Now hear this …
Jim Hurley and his Network of Handicappers and Bloggers just keep rollin’ through this College Basketball and NBA season with loads of big-time winners right here online at www.jimhurley.com or at our exclusive toll-free telephone # of 1-800-323-4453.
Get in on the fun/profits with all the hardwood action and remember the conference tournaments or so-called mini-tournies have already begun to heat up with lots of day-time action all throughout the month of March and we shall keep you posted. Don’t miss out on all the fun-n-profits as next week the power conferences all get into action – don’t miss out on the winners from the ACC, Big East, Big 10, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC!
OLE MISS (18-12, 9-8) – It’s a major source of discussion as to just how many Southeastern Conference teams will be landing up in this month’s NCAA Tournament. Some folks believe the SEC will “max out” at six and that might squeeze out the Ole Miss Rebels who host South Carolina on Saturday night. Note the Rebs are an ugly 1-8 SU (straight-up) versus SEC teams above ‘em in the current standings and so that hurts the cause … but a win here and then an opening-round SEC Tourney triumph should do the trick for a team with a shaky 77 RPI. Ole Miss is counting on the fact it’s beaten the teams it “should beat” and now must extinguish the SC Gamecocks or else, basically, all hope is lost.
ILLINOIS (18-12, 8-9) – Ahh, the Big 10 has 14 member teams these days and hoop insiders believe as many as nine teams (and maybe even 10) could go dancing and that would include this Illini bunch that has a so-so 56 RPI and should cruise in this regular-season finale at woe-be-gone Rutgers at noon on Saturday. If Illinois has something to hang its proverbial hat on, then it’s this late-year four-game winning streak that includes snazzy victories against Michigan State, Northwestern and Iowa. Remember the tourney always has liked teams with a bounce in their step late in the year and Illinois qualifies on that count!
In continuing our daily look at all of college basketball’s conference tournaments, it’s the …
SUMMITT LEAGUE – Saturday-thru-Tuesday
Sanford Premier Center – Sioux Falls, SD
THE FAVORITE: South Dakota
DARK HORSE: South Dakota State
PLAYER TO WATCH: Sophomore F Mike Daum of South Dakota State just captured the Summitt League Player of the Year honor after averaging 24.9 ppg and 8.1 rpg. The 6-foot-9 scored 51 points in a win against IPFW back on Feb. 18th.
NFL NEWS & NOTES
The annual NFL Combine is in full-speed mode these days in Indianapolis and so that means lots of young dudes chugging along with “40 times” and some folks not quite as tall as originally stated (see Michigan’s Jabrill Peppers) but much of the buzz coming from NFL-land revolves around next week’s free agency period … here’s how we see some of it shaking out:
ADRIAN PETERSON, RB – The former Minnesota Vikings superstar is hinting (and rather strongly) that he’d like to come to the New York Giants but don’t believe the NFC East team will wreck its salary cap for ‘em. More likely Peterson winds up in either Houston or San Francisco and if you’re really looking for a “dark horse” destination to this one-time single-season NFL rushing leader than don’t totally count out the rival Green Bay Packers.
DARRELLE REVIS, CB – First things first: The former “Revis Island” star has really dropped off in terms of production/speed/line-of-scrimmage impact but there will be teams looking for nickel help and backup safety insurance and – while many folks believe he’s headed back to New England for a “reunion” with head coach Bill Belichick -- we think it more likely he winds up in Los Angeles with either the Rams or the Chargers.
MARTELLUS BENNETT, TE – The truth is the Patriots would love to have ‘em back even if they knew TE Rob Gronkowski was going to be healthy for a full season but N’England never gets sentimental about its players and so Bennett’s going to be house-hunting again with his one-time team the NY Giants not out of the question. Still, more likely Bennett’s playing ball next season with the LA Rams.
NOTE: Lots of March Madness straight ahead as all the Power Conferences get into the swing of things with Mini-Tourneys all next week … make Jim Sez your home for all the College Basketball goodies.
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