Monday night saw three more teams crowned champions. Congrats are in order for Delaware, Manhattan and Wofford. Hearts go out to Iona, Western Carolina and especially William & Mary who were so tantalizingly close to a first ever NCAA Tournament bid only to have the Blue Hens steal it away in the final moments. Such is the way of college basketball, one minute you are close to nirvana, the next minute you are already discarded, a sad story forgotten about as another champion is crowned. God speed Pantsless Griffins.
Green Bay seemed to have the Horizon by the tail, playing the conference tournament at home and finishing two full games clear of the rest of the league. Milwaukee had other ideas and won their third game of the tournament with a thrilling overtime victory. On the other side of the bracket Wright State snuck by Cleveland State to earn the right to host the championship game tonight. Both teams scored less than 1 point per possession during the Horizon League season, so expect a slug fest in Dayton.
#5 Milwaukee vs. #3 Wright State - 7:00 ESPN
Mount St. Mary's was here fairly recently, losing to LIU in the NEC title game last season and is making their fourth appearance in the title game in the last seven years. Robert Morris is no stranger either, having made the title game in five of the last six years. These two teams won the three titles previous to Long Island's recent reign on the league with Bob Morris taking the whole thing in 2010 and 2009 and the Mount in 2008. Robert Morris won both meetings this season by eight points, but as March teaches us every year anything can happen in one game.
#4 Mount St. Mary's vs. #1 Robert Morris - 7:00 - ESPN
Sioux Falls has been home to one of the most uneventful tournaments in recent memory. All five games have played out to seed and prior to Fort Wayne beating South Dakota State 64-60 last night the closest game was a 16 point blowout. Each team won at home in the season series this year. IPFW is better all-around according to the points per possession numbers, sporting the second best offense and defense in the Badlands. NDSU on the other hand isn't great defensively, but is disgustingly good on offense (1.156 PPP 6th in the nation). Will hoops nation come down with another case of Bison Fever or will it be the first ever case of Mastodon Malaria?
#2 Fort Wayne vs. #1 North Dakota State - 10:00 ESPN2
#2 BYU vs. #1 Gonzaga - 9:00 ESPN
We didn't talk about Cusie much this season and maybe you don't qualify them as a mid-major, but there are a lot of old friends in here so we'll continue to keep an eye on it. Tournament takes place at El Paso.
#10 North Texas vs. #15 Rice -3:30
#11 Florida Atlantic vs. #14 Marshall - 6:00
#12 East Carolina vs. #13 UTSA - 8:30
Apologizes as we missed a few of the opening round games that started in the MEAC yesterday. Three more games in the opening round today.
#8 Howard vs. #8 North Carolina A&T - 4:00
#7 Coppin State vs. #10 Bethune-Cookman -6:30
#6 Florida A&M vs. #11 Delaware State -9:00
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