Now’s the time for bubble teams to either step it up or go and hide in the shadows. Certain bubble teams will almost assuredly make it to the NCAA Tournament, meaning they probably were never bubble teams to begin with.
However, many other teams are legit bubble squads that might get left out if they don’t step it up in some way. Check out predictions for five teams on the bubble. Will their bubble burst? Or, will it float to the land of 2019 March Madness bids?
Predictions for Five NCAA Tournament Bubble Teams
Film Don’t Lie with Luguentz Dort (@luguentz). 🍿Dort put on a defensive clinic against Washington. The freshman held Jaylen Nowell to 38% shooting along with three steals, and a block. Here’s how he did it.. @sportscronkite pic.twitter.com/dzX8sYJH7Z— Chancellor Johnson (@ChancellorTV) 12 de febrero de 2019
Five March Madness Bubble Team Predictions
Arizona State Sun DevilsCurrently, at 16-7, the ASU Sun Devils beat the best team in their conference on Feb. 9. The victory over Washington was nice, but ASU must do much better than that to secure a spot in the NCAA Tournament.
The problem? The Pac 12 is considered the worst of the Big 5 Conferences this season. Arizona, UCLA, and USC are a mess. Oregon is also a mess. Only Washington should make the tournament
Will ASU make it? No, unless they win the Pac 12 Tournament and garner the automatic bid. The Pac 12 probably isn’t as bad as everyone says it is. That won’t help the Sun Devils because it’s all about impressions and the Pac hasn’t made any this season.
Syracuse OrangeThe Orange did beat the Duke Blue Devils, the likely overall 1 seed in this year’s NCAA Tournament, but outside of beating Duke, Syracuse hasn’t been overly impressive. They’ve got a ridiculous stretch of games where they battle NC State, Louisville, Duke again, and North Carolina.
Will Syracuse make it? Yes. The Orange only must win 2-of-4 to garner the bid. Even if one of the victories is against NC State, the other win will be versus Duke, UNC, or Louisville. Those are three for sure tournament participants. Also, the Selection Committee absolutely loves Syracuse because they always show up in the tournament, often as a major Cinderella squad.
Oklahoma SoonersThe Sooners are a true bubble team. They’re at 15-9, but have a shot to make it because they battle five possible tournament teams in their last six games. If the Sooners beat Iowa State, Kansas, and Kansas State, the three for sure tourney teams left on their schedule, they’re in.
Will Oklahoma make it? No. The Sooners face tough battles against TCU and Texas, two teams they could lose too, before having to face the Cyclones, Jayhawks, and Wildcats. The Sooners are more likely to implode then they are to upset any one of the three NCAA Tournament for sure participants they play.
Ole Miss RebelsOle Miss has a decent resume, but it’s more because of who they’ve lost to than who they’ve beaten. LSU, Iowa State, Mississippi State, and Cincinnati are tournament locks. Their other three losses were to fellow bubble teams Butler, Alabama, and Florida Gators.
Will Ole Miss make it? Yes. The Rebels beat Auburn, Baylor, and Mississippi State this season. Unless they fold in their final regular season games and just don’t show up at all in the SEC Tournament, they should garner an at-large bid.
Ohio State BuckeyesThe Buckeyes were a Top 10 team after running out to a 12-1 straight up record. Losing 6-of-7 is why they’re currently on the bubble. However, they’ve appeared to have turned things around with three straight victories, including beating Indiana 55-52 on the road on Feb. 10. If the Buckeyes can traverse a ridiculous end of season schedule where they must battle Maryland, Purdue, and Michigan State on the road, and take on Wisconsin at home, they’ll make the tournament.
Will Ohio State make it? Yes. The Buckeyes made enough adjustments to end the losing streak. Those adjustments should carry over into victories over Wisconsin and either Purdue, Maryland, or Michigan State. If Ohio State wins 2 of those 4 crazy tough games, they’ll definitely make the NCAA Tournament.