It’s that time again—we’re almost ready for March Madness, which means it’s time for Bubble Watch. As the NCAA basketball regular season gets to the heart of its conference schedule, we start to take a look at the teams who may or may not make it. Here are five teams who have some work to do before they can feel they’ve got a lock on the tournament.
On the Bubble
Syracuse: Syracuse is, once again, on the bubble. According to ESPN’s Joe Lundardi, Syracuse is a number 10 seed, and they have a very tough schedule coming up. Their upcoming road games include Virginia Tech, NC State, and UNC, and home matchups with Duke and UVA. They beat Duke on the road, so they should make it, but they also have to win these upcoming big games.
Butler: When was the last time you saw Butler on the bubble? While they’ve have made it to the tournament 10 out of the last 12 seasons, this year, they have some work to do. They are at 12-8 and have a tough road ahead. They can’t afford anymore slip-ups and need to beat Marquette or Villanova to make it this year.
Ohio State: While OSU was once ranked number one, they’ve since suffered five consecutive Big Ten losses, which has really hurt them (as did their loss to Rutgers). This is Ohio State’s longest losing streak since the 1997-1998 season, and the road ahead isn’t going to get any easier. With a seven-game losing streak, it will be hard for them to be considered them tournament material, but they could turn it around if they start to win.
Texas: Texas is at 10-6 this year and definitely on the bubble. Since they’ve had some strong wins, and some close defeats, they may be able to enter the tournament despite their ugly losses.
Arizona: Since 1985, Arizona has missed the tournament once. The Pac 12 is relatively weak, which makes Arizona look a little better, but they are just 1-3 against RPI Top 50 schools. They must win the Pac-12 tournament to make it to the Dance.
So close, but yet so far. These five teams have work to do if they want to make it into the Tournament.