For the remainder of the regular season, Blogging the Bracket's TV previews for the two busiest college basketball days of the week, Wednesday and Saturday, will be presented by Bud Light's "March to the Championship" game. (Details below the jump.)
March made a lion-like entrance last night with plenty of bubble movement, which I highlighted over at SB Nation, and some early conference tournament action. A few teams weren't quite ready for crunch time, which leaves plenty of opportunities for others starting tonight.
Three of the top four seeds won home games in the Big South quarterfinals, as Coastal Carolina, UNC Asheville, and VMI all advanced to Conway, South Carolina for Thursday's semifinals (6 and 8:30 p.m. ET, ESPNU). They'll be joined by seventh seed High Point, who knocked off No. 2 Liberty Flames, 66-60. The Panthers will face three seed UNC Asheville in the semis, while host Coastal gets VMI.
Over in the Horizon League, all four top seeds won. That means Friday's second round in Milwaukee will feature games between No. 3 Cleveland State and No. 6 Wright State and No. 4 Valparaiso and No. 5 Detroit.
Today, postseason play begins in three more conferences, the Atlantic Sun, Ohio Valley, and Patriot League. One game from those three events will be televised, as No. 7 Colgate visits second seed American in a Patriot quarterfinal (CBS College Sports, 7 p.m. ET).
The rest of my viewing picks for tonight, another slate full of games with bubble and seeding significance, are after the jump.
Early Evening (ET)
Iowa Hawkeyes at Michigan St. Spartans, Big Ten Network (6:30 p.m. ET)
The Hawkeyes blasted the Spartans in Iowa City, winning by a 72-52 score. At the time, this result caused a lot of consternation amongst Michigan State fans and national observers. However, considering the loss came after a stretch where Tom Izzo's team dropped four of seven (and the three wins came in OT) and the Spartans have played indifferently since, maybe the level of surprise was unwarranted in hindsight. Regardless, losing at home to Iowa may very well put Michigan State in the NIT.
KenPom.com projection: Spartans 69-61, 66 poss.
North Carolina Tar Heels at Florida St. Seminoles, ESPN (7 p.m. ET)
Saturday's win over Miami all but booked the Seminoles' ticket to the NCAAs, even without Chris Singleton, However, if they can beat Carolina at home, they can improve their seeding, something that seemed inconceivable a couple of weeks ago. The Tar Heels need to be careful to not overlook FSU with their showdown with Duke on the schedule for Saturday; however, they received a blow Tuesday with the news that forward and potential three-point specialist Reggie Bullock was lost for the season with a knee injury, leaving UNC with just eight scholarship players.
KenPom.com projection: Tar Heels 69-67, 75 poss.
Connecticut Huskies at West Virginia Mountaineers, ESPN2 (7 p.m. ET)
The Huskies have slid down the Big East standings and S-curve as Kemba Walker has returned to earth, thanks to the attention of conference defenses, while the Mountaineers are looking to finish strong at home (Louisville is up next on Saturday). The loser of this one is likely to fall out of the top eight in the Big East standings, meaning they'd need to play on Tuesday at Madison Square Garden
KenPom.com projection: Mountaineers 67-63, 63 poss.
Colorado Buffaloes at Iowa St. Cyclones, Iowa State Sports/ESPN3/Full Court (7:30 p.m. ET)
The Buffaloes need to watch the post-Texas letdown as they head to Ames. Keep in mind that the Cyclones burst Nebraska's bubble by topping the Huskers at Hilton Coliseum on Saturday, just their second Big 12 win of the season.
KenPom.com projection: Cyclones 77-76, 71 poss.
LSU Tigers at Georgia Bulldogs, SEC Network Regional/ESPN3/Full Court (8 p.m. ET)
Much like Colorado, the Bulldogs need to avoid a late bad loss. LSU has won just three conference games this season, and 11 overall. Depending on what happens between now on Sunday, it's possible these two could meet again in the first round of the SEC Tournament in Atlanta next Thursday.
KenPom.com projection: Bulldogs 70-55, 64 poss.
Late Evening (ET)
Minnesota Golden Gophers at Northwestern Wildcats, Big Ten Network (8:30 p.m. ET)
The Golden Gophers need to sweep the Wildcats to keep their hopes alive. Tubby Smith's team topped the Wildcats in Minneapolis 81-70 back on January 26th.
KenPom.com projection: Wildcats 71-69, 64 poss.
Clemson Tigers at Duke Blue Devils, ESPN (9 p.m. ET)
A win over the Blue Devils would be a signature one for the Tigers, and it would carry a bit more weight than Virginia Tech's triumph on Saturday because of the location.
KenPom.com projection: Blue Devils 73-60, 67 poss.
Texas A&M Aggies at Kansas Jayhawks, ESPN2 (9 p.m. ET)
After winning three in a row away from College Station, it's likely the Aggies will pick up their second road loss in a row in Lawrence, as the Jayhawks will look to continue their push toward a top seed.
KenPom.com projection: Jayhawks 76-61, 66 poss.
Utah Utes at Colorado St. Rams, CBS College Sports (9 p.m. ET)
The Rams topped the Utes by six in Salt Lake City on January 29th, and they'll need to complete the sweep at Moby Arena to have any chance at an at-large bid.
KenPom.com projection: Rams 75-66, 69 poss.
New Mexico Lobos at BYU Cougars, The Mtn. (10 p.m. ET)
The Cougars welcome the Lobos to the Marriott Center, looking to avenge their only Mountain West loss of the season and bolster their case for a top seed. It will be BYU's first game without starting center Brandon Davies, who was dismissed from the team for the season on Tuesday because of a school Honor Code violation.
KenPom.com projection: Cougars 82-68, 71 poss.
Other Viewing Options
Maryland Terrapins at Miami Hurricanes, ESPNU (7 p.m. ET)
Memphis Tigers at East Carolina Pirates, FS South (7 p.m. ET)
UAB Blazers at Southern Miss. Golden Eagles, CSS (7 p.m. ET)
Providence Friars at Louisville Cardinals, Big East Network/ESPN3/Full Court (7 p.m. ET)
Charlotte 49ers at Xavier Musketeers, FS Ohio/CSN Philly/Time Warner-NC (7 p.m. ET)
Miami (Ohio) RedHawks at Buffalo Bulls, STO (7:30 p.m. ET)
Pittsburgh Panthers at South Florida Bulls, ESPNU (9 p.m. ET)
Utah State Aggies at New Mexico St. Aggies, ESPN2 (11 p.m. ET)
Please share your thoughts about tonight's action in the comments, after you sign up for a free SB Nation account, of course.
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