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2020 Western Athletic Conference Men’s Basketball Tournament Basics
Thursday, March 12th (quarterfinals); Friday, March 13th (semifinals); Saturday, March 14th (championship)
The Orleans Arena in Las Vegas, also home of the WCC Tournament, will host the WAC for the 10th consecutive season.
ESPNU airs the final late on Saturday night Eastern Time, while ESPN+ will stream the other six games.
Of the WAC’s nine members, eight will participate, with the Cal Baptist Lancers (21-10, 10-6) missing out in their second season of their transition into Division I. That’s too bad because the Lancers were clearly the conference’s second-strongest team.
Quarterfinals (Thu., March 12)
ESPN+ ($) will stream all four games.
Game 1: No. 8 Chicago State Cougars (4-25, 0-14) vs. No. 1 New Mexico State Aggies (25-6, 16-0), 3 p.m.
The Aggies swept the season series.
Game 2: No. 5 Kansas City Roos (16-14, 8-7) vs. No. 4 Grand Canyon Antelopes (13-17, 8-8), approx. 5:30 p.m.
The season series was a home split.
Game 3: No. 7 Cal State Bakersfield Roadrunners (12-19, 6-10) vs. No. 2 UTRGV Vaqueros (14-16, 9-7), 9 p.m.
The season series was a road split.
Game 4: No. 6 Utah Valley Wolverines (11-19. 5-10) vs. No. 3 Seattle Redhawks (14-15, 7-7), approx. 11:30 p.m.
The Wolverines swept the season series.
Semifinals (Fri., March 13)
ESPN+ ($) will stream both games.
Game 5: Game 2 Winner vs. Game 1 Winner, 9 p.m.
Game 6: Game 3 Winner vs. Game 4 Winner, approx. 11:30 p.m.
Championship (Sat., March 14)
Game 7: Semifinal winners, 11 p.m. (ESPNU)
10-Year Mayhem Potential
Data from Bob Vetrone Jr. on Twitter.
While New Mexico State has dominated the WAC over the past 10 seasons, that doesn’t mean the No. 1 seed has an overwhelming advantage in that time, as it’s claimed just four titles. The two seed has just as many, with the three rounding out the total.
- 1 seed (4): 2011, 2015, 2018, 2019
- 2 seed (4): 2012, 2014, 2016, 2017
- 3 seed (2): 2010, 2013
10-Year NCAA Seeding Record
Years with an NCAA win are in bold.
- 12 seed (5): 2010 (at-large), 2010 (automatic), 2011, 2018, 2019
- 13 seed (3): 2012, 2013, 2014
- 15 seed (2): 2015, 2016
- 14 seed (1): 2017
The Utah State Aggies are responsible for the WAC’s last at-large bid and they’re now in the Mountain West.
New Mexico State looks likely to earn a 14 seed, maybe a 13, but any other WAC champ will be seeded closer to 16.
Last NCAA Tournament Appearances
New Mexico State: 2019 (12 seed, 1st Round)
Cal State Bakersfield: 2016 (15 seed, 1st Round)
Seattle: 1969 (unseeded, 1st Round)
Next season, just two of the WAC’s members will have NCAA bids to their names, with only New Mexico State having one in the seeded era. That’s because Cal State Bakersfield is moving to the Big West. (Kansas City, meanwhile, returns to its former home, the Summit.) Cal Baptist will be joined by two more transitional teams, the Tarleton State Texans and Dixie State Trailblazers. While the Lancers will be eligible for the NCAAs in 2023, the other two newcomers have to wait until 2025.
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