Wed, 04/13/2011 - 06:03 — Raphielle Johnson
While many tend to ignore the "other" postseason tournaments in March due to the overwhelming popularity of the NCAA Tournament, there's an awful lot to be gained from said events especially if a team has a lot due back the following season. So similar to those bowl games outside of the BCS in college football, teams gain valuable practice and game experience. Below are ten teams (in alphabetical order) who fit the mold, including one that didn't play in the postseason at all, and could make some noise in 2011-12.
(1) Alabama (25-12, 12-4 SEC)
Sun, 03/13/2011 - 18:04 — Raphielle Johnson
Few people thought it could be done: winning five games in five days had never happened in the history of conference tournaments, and no team in the history of the expanded Big East Championship had gone from playing on Tuesday to the tile game. That all changed when Preston Knowles' attempt to tie the game at the buzzer hit the back iron, giving Connecticut the 69-66 win and their seventh Big East Championship title (first since 2004). MVP Kemba Walker scored 19 points, making the game-winning play on an assist after scoring a tournament-record 130 points through five games.
Sat, 03/12/2011 - 09:46 — Raphielle Johnson
It's almost become an annual occurrence in college basketball: Seth Greenberg's Virginia Tech Hokies in their customary spot on the bubble. And they looked to be headed in that direction tonight against Florida State in the final quarterfinal of the night in Greensboro, trailing 27-19 at the half and shooting a brutal 17.9% from the field. The Seminoles outscored Virginia Tech 16-6 in the paint and 14-7 in bench points in the first half, and guards Malcolm Delaney and Erick Green combined to shoot 1-for-15.
Fri, 03/11/2011 - 16:50 — Raphielle Johnson
Friday offers up some big matchups but none may be bigger than Georgia and Alabama in the first game of the day at the SEC Tournament. Both can still use wins (to be honest, who can't?) with the winner today keeping alive the ability to state their case on the floor while the loser has to hope their resume is good enough to warrant an NCAA Tournament bid. And the scouting reports should be fresh as the Bulldogs and Crimson Tide met in Saturday's regular season finale, a 65-57 Alabama victory in Tuscaloosa. The difference: turnovers.
Wed, 03/02/2011 - 18:50 — Raphielle Johnson
This point in the season offers many at-large candidates the opportunity to boost their resumes with another big win before going into conference tournament play. But having the chance and taking advantage of it are two entirely different things, and this was on full display Tuesday night. Baylor went on the road to Oklahoma State with a chance to simply show that they were effective at staying out of their own way...didn't happen.
Tue, 03/01/2011 - 22:27 — Raphielle Johnson
Despite an overall record of 19-9 and an SEC record of 11-3 Alabama is still in need of wins to ensure their presence in the field of 68. Why? Further inspection of their schedule provides the reason, with a non-conference schedule that boasts some bad losses and the mixed fortune that comes with playing in the SEC West. On the line tonight is at least a share of the overall SEC title as the Crimson Tide visits Florida (22-6, 11-3) in their lone regular season meeting.
Fri, 02/11/2011 - 18:51 — Raphielle Johnson
Outperformed, outworked and outclassed. That would sum up what happened to the Connecticut Huskies in the second half at Madison Square Garden, where the St. John's Red Storm built upon the momentum gained from a Malik Boothe buzzer-beater before halftime to win 89-72 in one of their best performances of the season. Just days after scoring 32 points in a losing effort at UCLA, Dwight Hardy once again lived up to his nickname ("Buckets") in scoring a new career-high 33 points and D.J.
Wed, 01/19/2011 - 17:23 — Raphielle Johnson
Up by as many as 18 points in the second half, Anthony Grant's Alabama Crimson Tide looked to be in good shape after an Andrew Steele gave them a 59-43 lead with 11:31 remaining at Coleman Coliseum. But from that point the Crimson Tide struggled mightily in the face of mounting Kentucky defensive pressure as John Calipari's team finally answered his halftime challenge to "man up". Kentucky held Alabama without a field goal for more than eight minutes before a JaMychal Green tip-in made the score 64-61 with 3:04 remaining.