Every year, teams see their dreams of making the NCAA Tournament come true, while others accept bids into other post-season tournaments.
Last season, 68 teams made the NCAA Tournament, 32 made the NIT, 16 made the College Basketball Invitational, 32 made the CollegeInsider.Com Tournament, and 8 teams took part in the inaugural Vegas 16 tournament. If the math is correct, that leaves 195 teams without a spot in post-season play.
Some teams aren’t even eligible for post-season play due to off-court issues, whether it’s due to low APR scorers or self-imposed bans.
That’s where we come in. We don’t discriminate, and even teams who aren’t eligible in the real world are welcome in our eyes. Living up to the Canadian stereotype of always being nice, we have included all 351 teams into one hypothetical post-season tournament.
CALGARY, Alb. — Before Kevin Hervey went down with a season-ending injury last season, the UT-Arlington Mavericks had the look of an NCAA Tournament team. They looked like the top threat to the Little Rock Trojans in the race for the Sun Belt title.
Following his injury, the Mavericks fell off their hot start to the season, and had to settle for a berth in the 2016 CollegeInsider.Com tournament. While a post-season berth is an impressive feat, fans of the Mavericks were left wondering ‘what if’.
The 2016-17 season is in the midst of conference play, and fans are seeing what a healthy Hervey can do against the rest of the Sun Belt.
Entering the week, the Mavericks were second in the conference, trailing only the Georgia Southern Eagles for top spot. They had two tough games on tap, one each at home and on the road, and needed two wins to keep pace atop the Sun Belt.
Behind the play of Hervey, who averaged a double-double for the week, the Mavericks scored two big wins by an average of 26.5 points.
For his efforts this past week, basketball fans selected Kevin Hervey as the College Court Report Fan-Voted Player of the Week for the week of January 23 – 29, 2017!
So far in 2016-17, the Sun Belt has lived up to its #FunBelt slogan on social media, as it sure has been fun.
In non-conference play, several teams had the look of a top contender in the race for a spot in the NCAA Tournament. After a slow start, the UT-Arlington Mavericks look like the team to beat, while the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers are picking up steam at the right time.
Another team who caught the attention of fans everywhere, including us, is the Arkansas State Red Wolves. A road win over the Georgetown Hoyas highlighted a strong start to their season.
On Monday, the Red Wolves were looking to bounce back after a loss over the weekend in conference action. They went on the road to take on the Appalachian State Mountaineers, a team who was looking for their first Sun Belt win of the year.
The Mountaineers were looking to make a statement, and they came out of the gates on fire. The home side opened the game on a 12-0 run to get the home crowd into the game early.
While Arkansas State would fight back, and the game would be tight right to the final few minutes, the Mountaineers wouldn’t let the game slip away.
In a belated home opener on Wednesday evening, the Florida Gators dispatched the visiting Little Rock Trojans with ease, beating them 94-71 behind five double-digit scoring performances.
The Gators (9-3) were forced to play the majority of their non-conference schedule away from their usual home arena, the O’Connell Center, which was in the process of being renovated and was reopened to the team only within the last few days. Florida head coach Mike White, in his second year at the Gators’ helm after a successful run at Louisiana Tech, led his team to a resounding double-digit win to open up the fresh building. Continue reading RECAP: Florida Gators Sink Little Rock, 94-71→
Little Rock, which was in the midst of an impressive six-game winning streak with only two losses so far in head coach Wes Flanigan‘s debut year, was sent away from Tulsa on Monday afternoon with a tough third defeat, as the Trojans were whipped by the Oral Roberts Golden Eagles 63-48.
The Eagles’ Aaron Anderson made a pair of 3-pointers in the first half and had eight total points, as ORU began pulling away late in the period and went into the halftime break with a 27-21 advantage.
It was only fitting that Coastal Carolina‘s Artur Labinowicz drained a long 3-pointer at the buzzer against the Wofford Terriers on Monday evening.
The game was a two-hour long shooting festival, a patchwork quilt consisting of run after run, much physicality and an ever-slim margin of error. Labinowicz’s shot would have fit into the madness nearly perfectly if it had forced overtime or won the game.
Unfortunately for the Chanticleers, it did fit into the madness perfectly — because before the heave, Wofford led by four.