Male’s Power Rankings: Who gets the 4th 1-seed after this

  • Jeff Borzello, ESPN

    • Personnel WriterMar 11, 2024, 09:40 AM ET Close Basketball recruiting insider.
    • Joined ESPN in 2014.
    • Graduate of University of Delaware.After a brief

stretch that featured less top-10 upsets than we have actually become used to seeing this season, this past week upended the 1-seed discussion and left plenty at stake entering the week before Selection Sunday.Tennessee had the within track for the final 1-seed at the start of the week, however the Volunteers saw their seven-game winning streak snapped on their home flooring against Kentucky on Saturday. Arizona then assumed lead– however that was before the Wildcats suffered a surprising 13-point loss at USC late Saturday night. Previously in the day, a potential sleeper for the final 1-seed, Iowa State, saw its hopes vaporize with a loss at Kansas State.The one winner from all the mayhem? North Carolina, which entered into Duke and knocked off heaven Devils, clinching the Tar Heels’very first outright ACC regular-season title because 2017. Arizona’s loss likely takes it out of

the mix, leaving a fight in between Tennessee and North Carolina for the last spot. The Tar Heels hold the head-to-head edge, beating the Volunteers in Chapel Hill back in November. Tennessee has the small metrics edge, especially from a predictive viewpoint. The Vols ‘best wins have come against Kentucky, Auburn, Alabama (twice)and Illinois, while Carolina has two wins over Duke and the win over the Vols.Will either team win its conference tournament? That might be the deciding factor.On to today’s awards and rankings … play 1:48 Longwood Lancers vs. UNC Asheville Bulldogs: Game

Emphasizes Longwood Lancers vs. UNC Asheville Bulldogs: Game Emphasizes On Feb. 7, Longwood was 2-8 in the Big South with losses in 10 of its past 12 games.On Sunday, the Lancers punched their ticket to the NCAA competition, knocking off 4-seed Winthrop, 1-seed High Point and 2-seed UNC Asheville on successive days to win the conference tournament.Against Winthrop, Longwood used a 13-2 run early in the second half to take control, getting 20 points from senior guard Walyn Napper to lead the way. For Saturday’s semifinal, the Lancers drew 1-seed High Point, which they had actually stunned the previous weekend in the regular-season finale, and came back from down 15 in the 2nd half to win in overtime. There was no such drama in the title game, as Longwood leapt out to a 22-6 lead in the opening minutes and never let Asheville in the game.Griff Aldrich has Longwood dancing for the second time in three years. play 0:14 From downtown, Jalen


hits the deep 3-pointer From downtown, Jalen Blackmon strikes the deep 3-pointer Provided the stakes, Blackmon’s performance against Austin

Peay in the ASUN national championship was among the very best specific efforts we’ve seen all season, if not the very best. Blackmon, who got in the postseason as the league’s top scorer, conserved his best for what would’ve otherwise been the last 20 minutes of his season. He finished with 43 points Sunday, consisting of 34 after halftime, leading Stetson to its very first NCAA tournament in program history.Blackmon hit three 3s in the very first half as Peay led by as lots of as nine points

late in the duration. However after halftime, Blackmon was just unguardable. He had a number of layups right after halftime and then really started midway through the half and down the stretch. He scored 30 points in the last 12:30, hitting the consent layup with 1:08 left and then icing the game with totally free throws in the final minute.Earlier in the ASUN competition, he scored 21 in a quarterfinal win over Queens and had 12 points and

four cents in the semis versus Jacksonville.< img alt=""src=""width="50

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play 1:47 Drake downs Indiana State to win MVC, earn NCAA tournament quote Tucker DeVries ratings 27 points as Drake beats Indiana State 84-80 to win the Missouri Valley Conference title.This was probably the must-see game of the weekend, between the 2 finest groups in the Missouri Valley and 2 of the best mid-majors in the country. It featured 2 stars in Robbie Avila and Tucker DeVries, and 2 coaches– Josh Schertz and Darian DeVries– who will be mainstays on the training carousel till they take a larger task. The biggest element: Just the winner was guaranteed an NCAA tournament bid.DeVries hit 3

early jumpers to stake Drake to an 11-point lead in the very first 6 minutes, and the Bulldogs led Indiana State– with whom they divided two regular-season conferences– by as lots of as 18 in the 2nd half. However within 5 minutes, the Sycamores had actually come all the way back to take a two-point lead. Over the final 3:30, it was all Drake. The Bulldogs ended up the game on a 10-4 run, with the most significant shot of the game originating from Conor Enright with 2 minutes delegated break the tie and offer Drake a three-point lead.

play 1:46 Morehead State

Eagles vs. Little Rock: Video Game Highlights Morehead State Eagles vs. Little Rock: Video Game Highlights It has actually been an impressive four-year run for Spradlin at Morehead State. After taking control of for Sean Woods in 2016 and having mixed outcomes for his very first 4 seasons, he has been among the most constant mid-major coaches in the nation. Because the start of the 2020-21 season, Morehead State has actually won 94 games, gone 58-16 in the Ohio Valley, won at least a share of two regular-season titles and will play in its 2nd NCAA competition next week.This season might have been Spradlin’s many impressive job yet. He lost OVC Preseason Player of the Year Mark Freeman to a wrist injury just 2 weeks before the season began, but replaced his production with NAIA transfer Riley Minix– who eventually won OVC Gamer of the Year and then balanced 24.0 points and 8.3 rebounds in 3 conference tournament wins. The last time the Eagles were in the dance, they hung with West Virginia for the better part of thirty minutes. Will they be a nuisance as a 14-seed once again?Three groups with concerns Editor’s Picks 2 Associated TCU Horned Frogs: Simply a few weeks ago, the Horned Frogs appeared easily in the field, however they’re truly struggling down the stretch– capped by Saturday’s home loss to UCF. They have actually now lost three of 4 and six of 10. Combined with a really bad nonconference strength of schedule and an underwhelming Quadrant 1 record, they need a win in the Huge 12 tourney. Mississippi State Bulldogs: A comparable story to TCU. The Bulldogs have actually lost four in a row getting in the SEC competition, after their overtime defeat to South Carolina on Saturday. They’re listed below.500 in the SEC and simply 2-8 in true road games, plus a terrible Quad 4 loss to Southern. A loss to LSU in the SEC tournament and things might get dicey. Utah Utes: At the turn of the calendar year, Utah was 11-2 overall and 2-0 in the Pac-12, with wins over

Wake Forest, Saint Mary’s, BYU and Washington State. Since then, the Utes are 7-11, consisting of a 1-9 record away from home. They had an outside possibility at an at-large bid going into recently, however those hopes ended with roadway losses at Oregon State and Oregon.Power Rankings play 0:43 Houston pads its lead on back-to-back pails Ja’Vier Francis slams it home over Hunter Dickinson, then seals the rock which the hands of Jamal Shead for a Cougars and-1

. 1. Purdue Boilermakers(28-3)Previous ranking: 1 Today: Big Ten tournament Purdue’s Final Four hopes flashed before its eyes in the very first half of Sunday’s win over Wisconsin, when Braden Smith had to be assisted off the floor and down the tunnel with what seemed an ankle injury.(Not to point out Zach Edey’s brief injury scare.)Smith ultimately returned, completing with 10 points(on 4-for-16 shooting )and 10 helps. But it did highlight the Boilermakers ‘nightmare situation. Smith routinely plays 36-40 minutes per game, dipping below that simply when in the previous 11 games. Lance Jones can run the show in spurts, but that’s not an ideal circumstance. 2. Houston Cougars (28-3 )Previous ranking: 2 This week: Big 12 tournament While the 30-point margin of Houston’s win over Kansas is eye-opening, it likewise came totally within the Cougars’typical strategy. They like to win on the offensive glass and on the protective end– and they turned 13 offending rebounds into 17 second-chance points and 18 turnovers into 30 points.

According to ESPN Statistics & Information, the 30 points off turnovers were the most by any group versus Kansas given that Long Beach State in 2011. 3. UConn Huskies (28-3) Previous ranking: 3 Today: Big East competition It’s a fantastic sign for the Huskies that Alex Karaban has actually relatively shaken off his small depression from the end of February.

In three games versus Marquette, Creighton and Villanova to end the month, Karaban averaged 5.7 points and shot 20.8% from the field and 18.8 %from 3. In his 2 games last week, however, the redshirt sophomore seemed back to his finest. He had 23 points and shot 5-for-9 from 3 against Marquette and after that went for 16 points on 4-for-6 3-point shooting in the win at Providence. 4. North Carolina Tar Heels(25-6)Previous ranking: 7 This week: ACC competition Champ Week 2024

Get basketball tournament action: 425-plus games throughout 26 conferences streaming on ESPN+, including

the AAC, Big 12, and West Coast Conference. Guy’s|Women’s – Watch: ESPN+deal for hoops fans – Bracketology: Women’s|Men’s – Bubble Watch: Women’s|Guy’s|Tournament Challenge Cormac Ryan’s experience and 3-point shooting are beginning to shine through as the Tar Heels enter the postseason. In the first 24 games of the season, Ryan scored more than 15 points simply twice. In his past seven games, he has actually scored more than 15 four times
— consisting of 2 games in which he made six threes. Ryan chose 31 points and 6

3s versus Duke on Saturday, striking three early threes to set the tone and then making 2 3s and 4 complimentary tosses in the last minutes to seal the game. 5. Tennessee Volunteers(24-7 )Previous ranking: 4 This week: SEC competition There appears to be a narrative forming around the Volunteers that they lean too much on All-American Dalton Knecht and are at their finest when he’s not carrying too much of

the offensive load. Do the numbers back that narrative up? Let’s have a look. Knecht has scored at least 36 points five times. Tennessee is 3-2 in those games, with the losses concerning Kentucky and North Carolina. In 24 wins this season, he’s balancing 19.8 points. In 7 losses, he’s setting up 26.7 points. The Vols did beat Alabama and Kentucky with Knecht being held listed below his season average, but they also had a hard time strongly versus Kansas and Purdue early in the season when he wasn’t at his finest. 6. Creighton Bluejays(23-8) Previous ranking: 8 This week: Big East competition Baylor Scheierman has actually been the Bluejays ‘catalyst over the last month of the season, and Ryan Kalkbrenner is their

protective anchor, but it deserves shining a light on how Trey Alexander has been playing over the

previous numerous weeks. Alexander had actually never distributed more than 9 helps in a game in his career; he had 10 versus Seton Hall in late February and 11 versus Marquette last weekend. He’s balancing 20.1 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.6 rebounds in his previous 13 games. Oh, and he hit the game winner with less than a second left versus Villanova on Saturday. 7. Arizona Wildcats(24-7)Previous ranking: 5 This week: Pac-12 competition play 2:12 USC upsets No. 5 Arizona USC heads into the Pac-12 tournament with some momentum as they
disturb No. 5
Arizona at home.As discussed earlier, the Wildcats ‘shot at a 1-seed might have disappeared with their listless performance versus USC on Saturday night. It’s their most current inexplicable defeat, joining a list that currently consisted of at Oregon State on Jan. 25 and the New Year’s Eve loss at Stanford,

when they gave up 100 points. Unlike those games, which included awful Arizona defense, Saturday was the Wildcats’worst offensive efficiency of the season– and the very first time all season they have actually been held to fewer than one point per possession. 8. Kentucky Wildcats (23-8)Previous ranking: 11 This week: SEC tournament With the method Reed Sheppard and Rob Dillingham have actually performed this season, it’s simple to forget it was Justin Edwards who was ranked No. 1 in the 2023 class coming out of high school. Edwards has actually struggled to show his potential during the majority of his freshman season in Lexington, but the left-handed wing is coming on strong down the stretch and is a vibrant two-way player who can make shots from the perimeter. In his previous five games, Edwards is balancing 13.2 points while shooting 69.7%from the field and 64.7%from 3. In his previous 17 games, he balanced 7.1 points on 46.1% shooting. 9. Iowa State Cyclones(24-7)Previous ranking: 6 This week: Big 12 competition The Cyclones had been playing with fire in some recent games, needing a late 11-0 run to close out UCF last weekend and then needing to remove a 14-point deficit in the 2nd half against BYU. Things finally caught up to them versus Kansas State on Saturday, though. The Wildcats jumped out to a 17-point lead early in the 2nd half, and Iowa State could not get closer than 5 the remainder of the way. Perhaps the more worrying pattern: The Cyclones have actually now scored less than one point per possession in four straight games to end the regular season. 10. Marquette Golden Eagles (23-8)Previous ranking: 9 This week: Big East competition Guys’s Competition Difficulty Total your bracket by choosing the winner for each game of the 2024 males’s NCAA competition. Play Men’s Tournament Challenge Considering that returning

from an ankle injury that limited him to just 5 minutes against Seton Hall and miss out on the list below game against Villanova at the end of January, Kam Jones has

been running at an exceptionally high level offensively. He scored 31 points in his very first game back on Feb. 3 and has actually struck the 30-point mark four times in his previous 10 games, consisting of a 30 and 9 effort in Saturday’s win over Xavier. Over that span, Jones is installing 22.3 points while shooting 60.1% from the field and 52.9%from 3-point range. 11. Duke Blue Devils(24-7 )Previous ranking: 10 This week: ACC tournament Two of Duke’s 3 worst protective performances this season have come versus North Carolina, with the third coming at Wake Forest a couple of

weeks ago. In the Wake Forest and very first Carolina games, Duke’s opponent found it far too easy to end up around the rim, and hardly ever turned the ball over. In all three games, one opposing player fumed from behind the arc: Harrison Ingram for the Tar Heels the very first time, Hunter Sallis for the Deacons and on Cormac Ryan in UNC’s latest win. 12. Auburn Tigers( 24-7 )Previous ranking: 14 This week: SEC competition play 0:48 Jones leads Auburn to victory to end regular season Denver Jones leads the No. 13 Tigers by making 7 3-pointers, and the Tigers record helps

on nearly 90 percent of their baskets in the 92-78 victory over Georgia.Denver Jones reached Auburn last spring with the credibility of a scorer after averaging 20.1 points at FIU in 2022-23. However he hadn’t been asked to produce at that level for the majority of

this season, recording simply 5 double-figure scoring efforts in his very first 20 games. In his past 11 games, however, he has hit double figures eight times, including his past four games.

On Saturday, he scored a season-high 21 points and made 7 3-pointers. 13. Baylor Bears(22-9) Previous ranking: 12 This week: Big 12 tournament Baylor dealt with huge deficits in both games this previous week. The Bears had the ability to overcome a 14-point margin against Texas on Monday, however after removing Texas Tech’s 16-point second-half lead on Saturday

, the Red Raiders retook the
lead and ran away with
a 10-point win. One plus going into

the postseason is Ja’Kobe Walter is averaging 15.9 points over his previous nine games– which followed a nine-game stretch in which he averaged 11.7 points on 29.7%shooting. 14. Illinois Battling Illini(23-8) Previous ranking: 13 This week: Big Ten competition After striking double figures in 10 of 11 games back in December and January, Quincy Guerrier hit that mark in just three of his next 10, as Terrence Shannon Jr. and Marcus Domask became

one of the Big 10’s finest duos and Coleman Hawkins was wonderful as a 3rd alternative. However this past week, Guerrier had

his finest back-to-back efficiencies in six weeks, choosing 12 points and three 3s versus Purdue and after that completing with 14 points and 13 boards against Iowa.Top stories of the week from Get exclusive access to thousands of premium posts a year from top authors. – Barnwell: Russ, Baker and Mac deals “- How NHL trade deadline affects 32 groups “- CFB: 60 years of playoff circumstances”More ESPN+material”

15. Utah State Aggies (26-5)Previous ranking: Unranked This week: Mountain West competition The Aggies clinched their very first straight-out Mountain West regular-season title with Saturday’s last-second win over New Mexico. It caps an incredible very first season under Danny Sprinkle, as the Aggies

didn’t return a single point from last season. But Sprinkle brought a couple of stars with him from Montana State–

Great Osobor, Darius Brown II– and it has been the best mix. Osobor and Brown together tape-recorded 40 points, 18 rebounds and 12 helps in the win over the Lobos. 16. South Carolina Gamecocks(25-6)Previous ranking: In the waiting space This week: SEC competition South Carolina dropped one in your home to Tennessee on Wednesday however recuperated with a roadway triumph at Mississippi State in overtime.

B.J. Mack broke out of his three-game downturn with 25 points versus the Bulldogs, including 2 late totally free tosses in policy

and eight straight points in overtime to carry the Gamecocks to the win. Mack had actually amounted to just 16 points because three-game stretch. Another bright spot is Collin Murray-Boyles, who has this statline from his past 10 games: 16.0 points, 8.2 rebounds, 69.8% from the field.Dropped out: Kansas Jayhawks(No. 15), Alabama Crimson Tide(No. 16) In the waiting space Kansas Jayhawks: The 30-point drubbing at the hands of Houston was the Jayhawks’very first 30-point Huge 12 loss because 2000, and the first time they have ever scored less than 50 points versus a Big 12 opponent. Integrated with the injuries to Kevin McCullar Jr.(who didn’t play in the second half )and Hunter Dickinson(who sustained a dislocated shoulder on Saturday), there are concerns about Kansas. Alabama Crimson Tide: Things might have been much worse for Alabama had it not pulled the overtime win over Arkansas to end the season, as things seemed to be unraveling prior to the late surge. The Tide had lost three

of 4 entering Saturday, allowing more than 100 points in two of those games. They have actually still allowed at least 88 points in seven of their past nine. BYU Cougars: It could have been a banner week for the Cougars, who led Iowa State on the road by 14 points early in the second before the Cyclones returned to win. They did recuperate with a win over Oklahoma State to keep their hopes of a top-four seed alive. A run to the semifinals of the Huge 12 competition– including a win over Texas Tech– might get that done.

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