Posts Tagged ‘Villanova Wildcats’

QT: Iowa, Michigan and Kentucky slip again

December 30, 2022 Leave a comment

QuickTakesIt hasn’t exactly been a riveting holiday season for Iowa, Michigan or Kentucky.  Fresh off a shocking pre-Christmas home loss to Eastern Illinois, Iowa absorbed a lopsided drubbing at Nebraska on Thursday.  The Hawkeye team that routed Iowa State in early December is currently MIA.

Michigan lost for the fourth time in six games by dropping a home decision to Central Michigan (a Quad 4 loss), leaving the Wolverines in near desperation mode entering January. With a morning NET rating above 100 and only a victory over Pittsburgh as a pre-2023 accomplishment, there’s a lot of work to do in Ann Arbor.

Big Blue Nation is aghast these days.  Kentucky’s best win of the season remains aforementioned Michigan after losing a double-digit outcome at Missouri.  UK returns home to face Louisville on New Year’s Eve.  If the Wildcats somehow manage to lose to this year’s Cardinals, all you-know-what may literally break loose in the Commonwealth. Read more…

QT: Oregon, Villanova, OSU join upset list

November 13, 2022 Leave a comment

Oregon, Villanova and Oklahoma State are the latest early-season victims to take the Upset City off ramp. Florida State previously took the exit and then missed the returning on-ramp by falling at Central Florida (which lost to UNC Asheville) – a rather inauspicious start for the Seminoles, who opened their season at No. 40 on the preseason seed list.  Someone needs to send out an APB for FSU.

QuickTakesOregon dropped a home game to UC-Irvine.
Villanova lost at Temple – which opened its season with a loss to Wagner.  Temple could well have a strong season, but the Wildcats losing here was still a bit surprising.  Insert reminder: true road games are never easy.
Oklahoma State fell at home to Southern Illinois.  The Salukis should challenge Drake in the Missouri Valley, so we could flip this as a resume-building win for SIU.  Either way, a notable result.

Toledo tops UAB
Somewhere down the road we could look back at Toledo’s neutral-court victory over Alabama-Birmingham as a building block toward at-large consideration.  UAB rightfully garnered a lot of preseason expectations out of Conference USA.  Toledo and Kent State are favorites for the Mid-American title.  Just something to keep in mind. Read more…

Quick Takes: Alabama falls, Villanova bounces back

December 22, 2021 Leave a comment

QuickTakesDavidson presented Alabama with an unwelcome gift Tuesday night, knocking off the Crimson Tide in Birmingham.  It was one of several surprising results, and it adds another quirky piece to the Tide’s non-conference resume.  Think about this:  Alabama has victories over Gonzaga and Houston.  They also have losses to Davidson and Iona.

Villanova continued its streak of poor three-point shooting, but outscored Xavier 40-21 in the second 20 minutes to rally from a half-time deficit.  While still early, it was an important bounce-back at home for the Wildcats, who had been routed in their two previous games against Baylor and Creighton. Read more…

Bracket Bits: Kansas building another strong resume

December 24, 2020 Leave a comment


Despite some slim margins, the Kansas Jayhawks are once again building a strong resume. Heading into Christmas, KU already has victories over West Virginia, Creighton and Texas Tech (the Red Raiders on the road). All three of those teams could end up as Top 4 seeds. The Jayhawks also own a win over Kentucky, but the Wildcats have stumbled out of the gate – so we’ll think of that as a wait-and-see type result. KU’s only loss is to Gonzaga.

Villanova is on its way too, after an early loss to Virginia Tech – and the Hokies appear stronger than we thought. The Wildcats have won 6 straight, including road wins at Texas and Marquette.

More Bracket Bits:

  • Team resumes remain scattered; schedules have been interrupted and changed due to the pandemic.  Beyond fewer data points, non-conference evaluation is going to be tough for the committee.  Some teams will have played multiple out-of-league games; others may have only one or two data points (or none).  
  • Then there are teams like Marquette, which stands at 5-5 as of this posting, with wins over Wisconsin and Creighton (on the road).  The Golden Eagles often look the part, but results are obviously mixed.
  • The Top of the Big 12 is incredibly strong – Baylor, Kansas, West Virginia and Texas Tech could all be second weekend teams (depending on how the bracket looks), with Baylor and Kansas shaping up as serious title contenders.
  • The Big Ten remains the deeper league and will likely to get the most at-large bids.  Is there a Final Four team in the group?  That’s tougher to answer.  Iowa is explosive, but questions remain about the Hawkeyes’ defense.  We also have some early questions about Illinois, Wisconsin and Michigan State.  Maybe those will change, but there are a handful of other really good teams that could impact the B10 title chase and eventual seeding.
  • Other than Notre Dame, Duke’s best win is Coppin State.  Kentucky’s best (and only win) is Morehead State.  Anyone predict those scenarios a month into the season?

Best wishes for a healthy and safe Christmas.  More frequent updates will begin as we head into 2021.

Bracket Bits: The value of road wins

January 8, 2020 Leave a comment

Dave2015When the Selection Committee gathers in two months to select and seed teams for the 2020 NCAA tournament, road wins (and overall road performance) often serve as a separating factor when comparing Team Sheets.  Who did you beat?  And where did you beat them?

That’s not to suggest that home wins aren’t important or that the Committee ignores losses (home or road – or in high numbers), rather, it’s a reminder that true road wins are a bit like gold: hard to find but of great value.

With that caveat in place – and conference play now in full swing – we note a few of Tuesday’s victorious road warriors: Baylor (at Texas Tech), Kentucky (at Georgia), Villanova (at Creighton), Houston (at Temple), Providence (at Marquette) and Florida (at South Carolina).  If we ranked those, it might look like this: Villanova, Baylor, Kentucky, Providence, Houston, and Florida. Read more…