Will this be the year? Will this be the year a team other than one from Virginia wins the Colonial Athletic Association. If the Drexel Dragons have anything to say about it, it will.
It’s been six years since UNC-Wilmington won the regular season title in the CAA. That’s six long years for the rest of the league as George Mason, Virginia Commonwealth and Old Dominion have dominated the league. In that span, Mason and VCU have gone to Final Fours and Old Dominion has gone to the NIT semifinals in addition to winning a first-round tournament game.
This year may be different though. Drexel is currently in a three-way tie for first with Mason and VCU, but it has beaten both teams and has lost only one time in is last 18 games.
The Dragons are hot and only have one game remaining against a team with more than three conference wins remaining. They’re in prime position to win the CAA title.
Stock Up: Travon Woodall. He’s made such a difference for the Panthers since returning from injury. This team looked completely lost without him and now look like one of the best teams in the Big East. If the tournament began today I don’t think Pitt would be in it, but I’m willing to bet money we’ll see Pitt in the Big Dance and that’s all due to Woodall.
Stock Down: Connecticut. I’ve never seen this before out of a UCONN team. The Huskies have had some down years, but what’s going on right now is downright embarrassing. As I write this, Louisville is currently beating them as if the Cardinals are the Dream Team and the Huskies are Angola. I’m pretty shocked.
Stock Up: Southern Miss Golden Eagles. The school that Brett Favre built is having quite a season. The Eagles are sitting at 20-3 and are atop the Conference-USA standings. They’ve achieved a season split with Memphis have beaten title contenders Marshall and UCF. They have a favorable schedule down the stretch and can solidify an at-large bid.
Stock Down: Duke’s Homecourt Advantage. First reports surface that student demand for tickets at Cameron Indoor Stadium isn’t as high as it’s been in the past. Then the Blue Devils go out and lose to Florida St and Miami. Not the Heat, the “U.” Obviously this says more about Duke than it does about Cameron, but it’s definitely surprising to see.
This Week’s Bracket Projections:
Last Four In: California, Minnesota, Wyoming, UCF
Last Four Out: Colorado St, NC State, Arkansas, Northern Iowa
Good for games through of 2/5
1.Kentucky16.UNC-Asheville/Norfolk St Louisville
8.Southern Miss9.Iowa St
4.Marquette13.Long Beach St
6.Gonzaga11.New Mexico Nashville
1.Missouri16.Stony Brook/Mississippi Valley St Omaha
5.Louisville12.Saint Louis Albuquerque
4.UNLV13.Middle Tennessee St
1.Syracuse16.Long Island Pittsburgh
5.Mississippi St12.Purdue Portland
4.St. Mary’s13.Cleveland St
7.West Virginia10.Memphis Albuquerque
1.Ohio St16.UT-Arlington Pittsburgh
8.Notre Dame9.Kansas St
5.San Diego St12.California/UCF Portland
6.Murray St11.Xavier Nashville