Big Lead Sports Bar

3/14/2009

DUQUESNE IS ONE WIN AWAY

ATLANTIC 10 CHAMPIONSHIP
DUQUESNE (21-11) VS. TEMPLE (21-11)
6 PM
TV: ESPN2



Could we have all three Pittsburgh D-1 basketball teams in the NCAA Tournament? The possibility is still on the table after Duquesne qualified for the A-10 Championship after a 77-66 win over Dayton last night in Atlantic City. They'll be taking on defending A-10 tournament champion and No. 4 seed Temple (21-11), and the game will be carried live on ESPN2. Tipoff is at 6 PM.

The Dukes haven't been to the NCAAs since the Norm Nixon days of 1977. They haven't even been to the NIT since 1994. So to say this is a big deal is a huge understatement.

A pair of guards led the way in the victory over Dayton, with senior Aaron Jackson and freshman Melquan Bolding scoring 24 points each. 21 of Bolding's points came via the three-pointer.

Ironically, it's the presence of potential "bid-stealers" like Duquesne and Baylor that might ultimately bump bubble teams like Penn State, which did themselves no favors in losing 79-65 to Purdue in the Big Ten Tourney. It's going to be a tense time gathering around the TV to watch the tournament selection show in Happy Valley tomorrow.

Duquesne advances to Atlantic 10 championship [PG]

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10 comments:

SantoGold said...

Duquesne possibly going to the Big Dance? That's impossible! Next thing you know the Pirates will be flirting with .500 baseball

Could both happen this year????

Adam said...

Tense times indeed.

You know, I've spent the better part of 8 months now having to apologize for our crappy OOC schedules in both basketball and football. Its ridiculous. All we had to do was schedule someone with a pulse AND LOSE, and we'd be in. Instead we played NJIT and Hartford. If this team, for all the magic they've played with all season long, misses the tournament, it may be the biggest crime in Penn State sports history.

Did losing the national championships in undefeated seasons bite? Heck yes, but, someone ELSE took those moments away from us. If we miss the NCAAs with one of the best teams any of us can remember in Happy Valley, it'll suck more than those because we took ourselves out of it. The only people we can blame are ourselves.

HotDog_Zanzabar said...

You are aware they lost 11 games aren't you? I'd say that hurts them more than their SOS

Adam said...

22 wins?

A 22-11 Pitt team with the schedule they played is an 8-9 seed at worse. If we'd played Pitt's OOC and even lost 2-3 more games, we'd have been fine.

See Arizona.

HotDog_Zanzabar said...

True. But PSU lost 11 games with a garbage schedule. Had they played Pitt's schedule, they might not even be a .500 team. I'm not sold on the Big 10 this year, regardless of how many teams they got in because more than half of those teams will be gone by this time next week.

Pitt used to schedule like that in the early days of the Howland era and it ALWAYS came back to bite them when it came to seedings.

Adam said...

Well, they didn't lose the games they were supposed to win. The losses primarily came in the Big 10, which, for whatever flaws you think it might have, is the deepest league in the country. Not as top heavy as the ACC or BE, but still pretty darned good. 10-8 in a BCS league typically gets you in, unless your the dumbasses who schedule Hartford, NJIT, and Lafayette.

I think we're one of the 34 best teams that was in the at-large pool, and its bullshit that we took the opportunity away from ourselves to prove it.

And as far as the Big 10 goes, whatever happens, this basketball season has been a real pick-me-up after the disasters in football, so whatever we get from here on out is gravy. I think everyone but Wisconsin has a fighting chance this weekend, at least to see round 2.

SantoGold said...

The tournament is supposed to be comprised of only the best teams in the country, plus conference champions. If you're not a slam dunk choice as one of the 34 at large bids, then your not one of the best teams in the country. Complaining that your good but not great team deserves to get invited more than someone elses good but not great team counts for nothing. Win more games and your team's fate won't be in someone else's hands.

the nigerian nightmare said...

Totally agree Adam....the OOC schedule was absolute garbage and now they're paying for it. It definitely bothers me though that Michigan and Minnesota got in over PSU, and especially 'Zona. Once again though, it's their own damn fault. The OOC schedule, the regular season finale against Iowa, no excuses.

BurressWithButterflyWings said...

I don't personally agree that the Big Ten was the deepest conference in the country. But that's based on my bias.

Adam, you are right about the importance of SOS and i do remember it coming back to bite Pitt in 2001 after being something like 19-14 and playing in the BE title game but still went to the NIT. I guess that is just a lesson to be learned moving forward? Plus, you never know who is going to be up or down from year to year.

BurressWithButterflyWings said...

the nigerian nightmare said...
Pretty sure PSU's NCAA invite is all but sealed bud.....and the Pitt remark was sarcastic. Or was it?

4:44 PM

Sorry NN, I had to post it.