Well, the Spartans continue to struggle on the road — what a horrible way to finish the regular season — losing to Illinois by only three (3) points, and then losing to Maryland as well by only three (3) points in the closing seconds (a last-second basket by Maryland). Major bummer of a week for the Green team! It was no real surprise that Kansas took over the top position in the rankings and the Big Ten only has two (2) teams currently in the AP top-25 : Purdue (#16) and Wisconsin (#22). What a dismal showing this year by the Big Ten. Most of the major conferences wrapped up their regular season this week which means that championship week starts now! It is officially March, let the Madness begin as we continue in earnest down the road to the Final Four! By this time next week we will know the participants and the seedings of this year’s NCAA Tournament. MSU is currently projected as a #10 seed (thank you Joe Lunardi), but we’ll still have to wait and see; a couple of wins in the Big Ten Championship Tournament would go a long way to solidifying a Spartan presence at the dance. Woohoo!
Next up for the Spartans: a Thursday game in the Big Ten Tournament where they will face the winner of Wednesday’s matchup between Penn State/Nebraska . . . . Go Green!
The upsets this week included:
North Carolina (#5) losing to Virginia (#23).
Louisville (#8) losing to unranked Wake Forest.
West Virginia (#10) losing to Baylor (#11).
Florida (#12) losing to unranked Vanderbilt by two (2) points.
Butler (#13) losing to unranked Seton Hall by six (6) points.
Florida State (#15) losing to Duke (#17) by five (5) points.
Wisconsin (#22) losing to unranked Iowa by two (2) points.
Miami (#25) losing to unranked Virginia Tech by five (5) points.
The close calls this week (won by six points or less [two scores] or in overtime) included:
Kansas (#1) defeating unranked Oklahoma State by five (5) points.
Kentucky (#9) defeating unranked Vanderbilt by six (6) points.
Purdue (#16) defeating unranked Northwestern by four (4) points.
Iowa State (#24) defeating unranked Oklahoma State by three (3) points.
Top-25 match-ups won by the higher-ranked team included:
North Carolina (#5) defeating Duke (#17).
Louisville (#8) defeating Notre Dame (#19).
West Virginia (#10) defeating Iowa State (#24).
Florida State (#15) defeating Miami (#25).