Before I jump into today's TV schedule, here are a few significant results you may have missed from Saturday that could end up having impact on Selection Sunday.
It was opening day for CAA play, and while I spent the evening watching George Mason pull apart UNC Wilmington, 80-52, Delaware (2-2 going into the night) opened up a five-point halftime lead on league favorite Old Dominion, extending it to double digits, finally holding on for a 75-67 victory. The final few minutes turned into a foul fest, with Delaware's inability to hit free throws giving the Monarchs hope late. Because of these charity stripe foibles, the last two clock minutes of the Newark contest seemed to take as long as the last 10 in Fairfax.
I don't want to write off the Monarchs' at-large chances quite yet, not with three extra at-large spots up for grabs. ODU has a couple of chances this month, with a home game against a dicey Dayton squad and trip to Missouri on the slate, but I'm not sure how much mileage they'll get out of wins over Clemson and Xavier this season. (A home win over Richmond should still be a boost.) The CAA's other great hope, VCU, missed a great chance on Wednesday to grab a Red Line Upset at USF, but that win's profile-enhancing abilities would have been arguable anyway. The Rams need UCLA to keep improving, as that's their best win so far, and they have their own game against Richmond next weekend.
Incidentally, the Rams took care of business in their CAA opener, defeating William & Mary, 59-55, in Richmond.
The penultimate game of the Missouri Valley-Mountain West Challenge saw San Diego State pull away from Wichita State, 83-69. The Aztecs led by just one at halftime, but an early second half run (21-3) created a gap the Shockers couldn't close.
That defeat probably does reduce the Valley to a one-bid league. Wichita State's best win at the moment is Virginia, and their best two non-league games (barring an epic Bracketbuster) are against LSU (in Bossier City) and at home against Tulsa. In short, those aren't helpful. No one else in the league has a noteworthy win on its resume, as athletic directors and coaches seem to have gone away from the scheduling that made this conference an RPI beast in the middle of the last decade (something Kyle Whelliston wrote about in depth in One Beautiful Season).
Utah State will probably need to win the WAC after Georgetown defeated them 68-51, here in D.C. The Aggies showed a lot of fight in the first half, as they went to the locker room at halftime only down four. The Hoyas noticed the refs were calling everything, so they focused on driving the ball inside (especially as Utah State gave them few perimeter opportunities early), drawing fouls, forcing the Aggies' regulars to sit. (For instance, Tai Wesley fouled out with 10 minutes left.)
Last season, the Aggies earned an at-large with a similar non-conference schedule, but they happened to beat BYU. This year, they fell to the Cougars in Provo, albeit controversially, thanks to the newly-emphasized elbow rule. But with their best win so far coming against Utah, Utah State may have to finish the WAC slate with 16 wins this season to get a serious look.
Finally, Murray State's at-large chances were all but through anyway heading into Saturday's game at Morehead State, but Kenneth Faried and the Eagles may have taken the OVC favorites' mantle from the Racers with a 75-65 home win. Faried lead the way with a 21-point, 10-rebound performance.
There were a lot of other intriguing games yesterday, but you're probably looking for TV info at this point. I'll have that after the jump. If you want to see more scores from Saturday, click any of the score links above and check out the sidebar on the right side of the page.
If a team's name appears as a link, click it to visit that school's SB Nation blog for more coverage.
Richmond at Arizona State, FS Arizona/FCS Pacific (2 p.m. ET): The Spiders look to grab another BCS-level win--especially after losing at Old Dominion on Wednesday--against a team that plays a familiar style.
Creighton at Nebraska, FS Midwest/ESPN3 (2 p.m. ET): The fight for Cornhusker State supremacy is on!
Clemson at South Carolina, SEC on FSN/ESPN3 (4 p.m. ET): Same deal in the Palmetto State. The Tigers will look to be a bit better offensively than they were against Michigan on Tuesday, especially as they'll face a hostile crowd in Columbia.
Virginia at Virginia Tech, FSN/Comcast SportsNet (6 p.m. ET): ACC play starts with the Hokies, a potential league contender, taking on a Cavalier team that has some potential, as shown in their win at Minnesota Monday night. However, UVa will play without Will Sherrill, who's out for the foreseeable future with a fractured fibula.
I'll be taking in this tripleheader, featuring the alma mater in game one, today.
Florida vs. American, MASN/Sun Sports (2:30 p.m. ET): The Gators visit to D.C. completes a home-and-home of sorts, as they defeated the Eagles by 16 in Gainesville last season.
George Washington vs. Navy, MASN (approx. 5:15 p.m. ET): This is a rematch from last year's BB&T, when the Colonials defeated the Middies by 12.
Temple vs. Maryland, MASN/FSN/Comcast SportsNet (approx. 8 p.m. ET): The final game of the tripleheader pits an Owl team that is in need of a marquee win after a 1-2 trip to Florida last week against a Terrapin team that seems poised to exceed expectations for this season.
Big 12/Pac-10 Hardwood Series
The Big 12 is just one win away from claiming the final edition of the series. The Pac-10 started Saturday by getting on the board with two straight wins (California over Iowa State, 76-73, and Washington over Texas Tech, 108-79, a win that featured a 61-point Husky first half), but Colorado grabbed win number six for the Big 12, topping Oregon State, 83-57.
Oklahoma at Arizona, FSN/Comcast SportsNet (4 p.m. ET): While the Wildcats lost their first game this season against Big 12 opposition, against Kansas in Las Vegas, they should have little trouble with a Sooner team that went 0-3 in Maui, especially with the game in Tucson.
Texas at USC, FSN/Comcast SportsNet (10:30 p.m. ET): The Trojans and Washington get to play two games in this series in its final year. Expect USC to pick up a second loss, but this assumption depends on which Texas team decides to show up.
The MWC has this series in the bag, as they own a 7-1 lead after San Diego State, Utah (68-60 over Bradley), and Wyoming (81-51 over Indiana State) grabbed victories Saturday. Northern Iowa owns the Valley's only win so far this season, as they won 64-60 at TCU yesterday.
Evansville at Air Force, The Mtn. (3 p.m. ET): Having won at Hinkle Fieldhouse already, I don't think the Purple Aces will fear Clune Arena.
For broadcast information for games that will be telecast regionally, like Portland State at Oregon and Hartford at Florida State, visit Matt Sarz's College Sports on TV site. Another good resource is the schedule page at BB State.
Please share your thoughts about today and tonight's action in the comments, after you sign up for a free SB Nation account, of course.
Which of Saturday's losers has the best shot of earning an at-large bid to the 2011 NCAA Tournament?
Murray State (3 votes)
Old Dominion (5 votes)
Utah State (4 votes)
Wichita State (36 votes)
None of the above (3 votes)
51 total votes