Reminders of the different groupings:
- Group 1 (home games): Visitor is ranked 1-30
- Group 1 (away games): Host is ranked 1-75
- Group 2 (home games): Visitor is ranked 31-75
- Group 2 (away games): Host is ranked 76-135
- Group 3 (home games): Visitor is ranked 76-160
- Group 3 (away games): Host is ranked 136-240
- Group 4 (home games): Visitor is ranked 161-353
- Group 4 (away games): Host is ranked 241-353
All NET numbers are from the NCAA’s website and reflect games played through Sunday, January 20th. Records are accurate as of the same date. All times are Eastern.
Top 30 at Top 75
Group 1 for both the host and visitor
No. 20 Maryland Terrapins (16-3, 7-1) at No. 5 Michigan State Spartans (16-2, 7-0), 6:30 p.m. (FS1)
No. 9 Virginia Tech Hokies (15-2, 4-1) at No. 12 North Carolina Tar Heels (14-4, 4-1), 7 p.m. (ESPN)
No. 18 Iowa State Cyclones at No. 19 Kansas Jayhawks, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
The Terps and Spartans meet just once this season, and with the pair having just lost one league so far combined, this showdown will have implications in both the Big Ten race and seeding picture. Similarly, the Hokies and Tar Heels also convene for their sole regular-season matchup, with the winner gaining a slight, temporary advantage on the remainder of the six-strong pack that’s 4-1 in ACC play. It may be difficult to believe, but the Cyclones can complete a season sweep of the Jayhawks tonight. But don’t expect it to be an easy task, especially with Kansas likely to be angry following a shock Saturday loss at West Virginia.
31-75 at 76-135
Group 2 for both the host and the visitor
The final Big East game of the holiday weekend features a pair of teams whose postseason hopes are in serious danger. The Bluejays have dropped four straight, while the Hoyas have just won one of their last four — needing a pair of overtimes to even get that far. In the night’s other Big 12 matchup, the Bears, who have gotten themselves back into the bid conversation by winning three of their last four, could find themselves in trouble again if they become the Mountaineers’ second straight victim.
Top 30 at 136-240
Group 1 for the host only; Group 3 for the visitor
The Huskers can’t let Michigan State, who won a 70-64 decision in Lincoln on Thursday, beat them twice, as they should be able to handle a Scarlet Knights squad that’s followed a nice win over Ohio State Buckeyes with three consecutive losses.
76-160 at 76-135
Group 2 for the visitor only; Group 3 for the host
Remember when this matchup was projected to feature a pair of C-USA title contenders and at-large threats? Not only are both teams already out of the latter picture, but the Hilltoppers will find themselves four games out of the title chase with a home loss this evening.
1/1 No. 20 Maryland Terrapins at No. 5 Michigan State Spartans, 6:30 p.m. (FS1)
1/1 No. 9 Virginia Tech Hokies at No. 12 North Carolina Tar Heels, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
1/3 No. 13 Nebraska Cornhuskers at No. 142 Rutgers Scarlet Knights, 8 p.m. (BTN)
2/2 No. 63 Creighton Bluejays at No. 95 Georgetown Hoyas, 8:30 p.m. (FS1)
1/1 No. 18 Iowa State Cyclones at No. 19 Kansas Jayhawks, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
2/2 No. 53 Baylor Bears at No. 86 West Virginia Mountaineers, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
3/2 No. 112 Marshall Thundering Herd at No. 126 Western Kentucky Hilltoppers, 9 p.m. (CBSSN)