Projection after March 6 games

March 6, 2013 by Doug Smock

I missed on two games Wednesday night — my hunch pick of Tulane over East Carolina and what I thought was a clear pick of Tulsa over SMU at home.

It rattled the standings table some, with East Carolina apparently clinching the 4th seed behind Memphis, Southern Miss and UTEP. Only the 5th bye spot is up in the air, and Tulsa should get that — it plays Rice and co-5th place team UAB plays at Memphis.

Whether or not Marshall beats East Carolina, I still project the Herd in the 8-vs.-9 game, against Tulane in either direction. Tulane plays Houston, which is a tough-to-call game I’ll give to the Cougars.

Here’s the weird thing: With the exception of Tulsa, Marshall has lost to every team within a game in the standings, in either direction. The Herd will own up to six victories over the top six teams including Central Florida. That speaks volumes about the season, doesn’t it.

The projections, first with Marshall losing to ECU on the road, then with MU winning:

1. 16-0 — Memphis (now 15-0) UAB // W (clinched 1)
2. 12-4 — So Miss (11-4) UCF // W (clinched 2)
3. 10-6 — UTEP (9-6) SMU // W (clinched 3)
4. 9-7 — ECU (8-7) Marshall // W (clinched 4)
5. 8-8 — Tulsa (7-8) at Rice // W
6. 7-9 — Houston (6-9) at Tulane // W
7. 7-9 — UAB (7-8) at Memphis // L
8. 6-10 — Tulane (6-9) Houston // L
9. 6-10 — Marshall (6-9) at ECU // L
10. 5-11 — SMU (5-10) UTEP // L
11. 1-15 — Rice (1-14) All losses (clinched 11)

With a Herd win over ECU:

1. 16-0 — Memphis (now 15-0) UAB // W (clinched 1)
2. 12-4 — So Miss (11-4) UCF // W (clinched 2)
3. 10-6 — UTEP (9-6) SMU // W (clinched 3)
4. 8-8 — ECU (8-7) Marshall // L* (clinched 4)
5. 8-8 — Tulsa (7-8) at Rice // W
6. 7-9 — Houston (6-9) at Tulane // W
7. 7-9 — UAB (7-8) at Memphis // L
8. 7-9 — Marshall (6-9) at ECU // W*
9. 6-10 — Tulane (6-9) Houston // L
10. 5-11 — SMU (5-10) UTEP // L
11. 1-15 — Rice (1-14) All losses (clinched 11)

Both scenarios not only keep Marshall in the 8-9 game against Tulane with the winner taking on Memphis, but puts the Herd in the 9:30 p.m. spot both nights. Ugh.

There’s one way the Herd can drop to the 10th seed and play UAB (with winner taking on Southern Miss): MU loses at ECU, SMU wins at home against UTEP. That game time would be 4:30 ET for the first round with a 1 p.m. second round, if I have the procedure down. (Note: On day one, there is one single session with three games this time around. No UCF, you know.)

Enjoy the rest of the week …

Leave a Reply