Good morning Coug fans. We’ve survived the dog days of January and enter February, which sees hope at the end of this 29-day tunnel before March arrives, and that means madness is near. Will our WSU men’s basketball team revel in the madness come March? Who knows! But for the first time since Klay Thompson got busted for pot, there’s definitely a chance.
The Cougs head into tonight’s showdown at Washington sitting at 15-6 overall and 6-4 in conference play. That’s good enough to be tied for third in the Pac-12 with Colorado and Utah. Those three trail first place tandem Arizona and Oregon.
The Cougs need to keep winning, and they especially need to keep winning some specific games. Overall records mean less than in previous iterations of the NCAA Tournament. Now it’s rightfully about who you beat and where. Let’s look at WSU’s situation as it stands this second, knowing that things will change after today.
First, here’s WSU’s resume prior to tonight’s game at Washington.
You’ll see WSU is 2-3 in Quad 1 wins, with three more chances—including tonight—to nab more. Tonight’s game against Washington is currently a Quad 1 potential win, but you’ll notice that UW’s no. 72 NET ranking is close to dropping that to a Quad 2 win, depending on what happens the rest of the season for the Huskies.
Yes, you’ll probably have to root for UW to remain at no. 75 or higher in the NET rankings this season. Hold your noses.
You might also notice that Boise State is now a Quad 1 win. That’s because the Broncos have won enough recently and improved their NET ranking. That the win over Boise State was in Spokane and technically on a neutral court helps WSU immensely. Keep it up, Broncos!
It would also be nice if Colorado kept winning and moving up the NET rankings, making that home win a Quad 1 victory. There’s still plenty of season left, so a lot could happen.
Next, it’s the always fun T-Ranketology, which has WSU squeezing in the tournament as an 11-seed that avoids one of the play-in games. As always, this is an end-of-season prediction, not where things stand now.
Then there’s the well-established Bracketology predictions. Here’s where WSU stands in those:
- ESPN: First Four Out (along with Gonzaga, hmmmm....)
- CBS: 10-seed playing in Memphis against 7-seed San Diego State
- On3: 11-seed playing Ole Miss in the play-in game
- USA Today: First Four Out
- Blogging the Bracket: First Four Out
And so on. Bracket Matrix looks at all online Bracketology predictions and has WSU averaging an 11-seed and is in 52 of the 85 brackets it surveyed.
So, suffice to say, these next batch of games are crucial for WSU. It begins tonight in Seattle against Washington. You can catch the game starting at 6 p.m. PT on the Pac-12 Network.