Wednesday, February 16, 2011

It has not been fun to be #1

Similar to the 2010 football season where it seemed like the #1 ranking was a stigma rather than an asset as schools with the target on their backs was too heavy to bear, this NCAA hoops season is following a similar trend and it’s probably going to become an even more frequent event as move into the conference tournaments.

As always the Big East conducted its weekly dismantling of each other but Pittsburgh still manages to have the least amount of scars with only one conference loss and two overall. At 24-2 they look poised to take over the daunting task of carrying the ‘top dog’ bullseye on their back after this week (since Texas doesn’t seem to want it) with Kansas getting knocked off by KState, and the Panthers handling their biznis’ against South Florida. True, there’s no such thing as an easy game in the Big East but Pitt should have enough left to handle a trip to the Big Apple on Saturday and beat St. Johns. Meanwhile the horns may not want the scarlet letter but it will be theirs to wear at least until the end of the month when they host the same KState that knocked the rival Jayhawks off the same perch. But that game is in the friendly confines of Austin and being at home makes all the difference this year. Wisconsin proved to be the tough out in Madison that we thought they would be and handed OSU their first loss of the season but once on the verge of the top 10 lost their next game on the road at Purdue (10), which further emphasized the point that, much like in football, any power conference school is going to be tough in their own gym (and some outliers like SD State) but on a neutral court the uniforms don’t matter and that is what will make this year’s tournament the most unpredictable and the days of 4 top seeds making the Final Four are history. However what the conference tournaments will expose is who is ready for the pressure of prime time and rest assured if you haven’t put together a six game winning streak so far this season don’t look to do so in March and April.
Who do you think is poised to make a deep run in the Big Dance? Let us know here and in any of the quick links and blogs.

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