"I Slept On It" is Blogging the Bracket's nearly daily roundup of the previous night's college basketball action, with a bracketology focus.
The only AAC bid contender in action on Wednesday, Connecticut (22-6, 10-5) wasn't able to repeat its blowout home win over USF (12-16, 3-12) in Tampa, but the Huskies did pick up a 61-56 victory, thanks to 15 second-half points from Shabazz Napier.
Bubble team Richmond's (18-10, 8-5) hopes took a hit with a 69-60 loss at George Mason (10-17, 3-10), who currently sits at 139th in the RPI. That was the Spiders' first loss to a team from outside of the RPI Top 100, however. Many other bubble teams have more. UMass (22-5, 9-4) struggled with Rhode Island (22-5, 9-4) for the second time this season, but Chaz Williams scored 16 to help push the Minutemen past the Rams, earning a season sweep with a 70-67 victory.
While T.J. Warren (36 points) got the edge on Marcus Paige (35) on the scoresheet, North Carolina (21-7, 11-4) got the better of N.C. State (17-11, 7-8) when overtime ended in Raleigh, as the Tar Heels denied the Wolfpack a necessary win for their bubble chances. Paige drove to the basket with 0.9 seconds left, connecting to give UNC an 85-84 victory.
West Virginia's (15-13, 7-8) chances are pretty much up in flames after an 83-66 loss at Iowa State (22-5, 10-5). The Mountaineers have now dropped three in a row and four of their last five. Baylor (18-10, 6-9) also picked up a loss, though the damage won't be as severe to the Bears' selection sheet. Texas (21-7, 10-5) took out Scott Drew's club, 74-69, thanks to 20 and 10 from Cameron Ridley. Baylor's Kenny Chery led all scorers with 27 on the evening.
Michigan (20-7, 12-3) needed overtime, but finally slipped past Purdue (15-13, 5-10) thanks to a Glenn Robinson III layup with one second to go in the extra session. All five Boilermaker starters hit double-figures in scoring, led by Terone Johnson (22) and Ronnie Johnson (21), while four of the five Wolverine starters did the same.
The biggest bubble loser of the night might have been Nebraska (16-11, 8-7), who dropped a winnable at Illinois (16-12, 5-10) by a 60-49 score. The loss ended the Cornhuskers' five-game winning streak.
UNLV (18-10, 9-6) now holds the edge for the No. 3 seed in the Mountain West Tournament over Boise State (18-10, 8-7) after the Broncos fell at Fresno State (15-14, 8-8) while the Runnin' Rebels held off Colorado State (15-14, 6-10).
Arizona (26-2, 13-2) made sure there was no repeat win for California (18-10, 9-6) in Tucson, as the Wildcats routed the Golden Bears, 87-59. The Pac-12 leaders dominated the glass and hit their shots in picking up the win and handing Cal a loss that could push them closer to the cut line. In the second half of the night's Desert/Bay Area doubleheader, Arizona State (20-8, 9-6) picked up a split with Stanford (18-9, 9-6) by winning a 76-64 contest. The victory snapped the Sun Devils' two-game skid while simultaneously ending the Cardinal's three-game run of victories.
In yesterday's viewing guide, I said this when describing the #SECBasketballFever slate for the night.
The Bayou Bengals, Volunteers, and Rebels all need to win tonight to keep their hopes afloat, which means that two out of the three will likely lose.
Well, I was a bit incorrect with that prediction, as all three happened to win. While I watched LSU (17-10, 8-7) take out Texas A&M (16-12, 7-8) by a 68-49 score in person, Tennessee (17-11, 8-7) won at Mississippi State (13-15, 3-12) by seven and Mississippi (17-11, 8-7) avoided a sweep at the hands of Alabama (11-17, 5-10) by picking up a 79-67 win in Oxford.
Boston U. (21-9, 14-3) holds a one-game lead on American (17-11, 13-4) in the Patriot League race with one regular-season game left, as the Terriers slipped by Army and the Eagles took out Navy on Wednesday evening.
In the MAC, Western Michigan (19-8, 12-3) kept its share of the conference lead by defeating Ball State (4-22, 1-14), while Buffalo remains a game back after winning at Ohio (19-9, 9-6). Akron (17-11, 9-6), meanwhile, lost ground by falling at Miami U. (11-15, 7-8), 65-61.