Championship Week: Big South, Horizon, and Ohio Valley Ready to Begin

Paul SeaverCorrespondent IMarch 2, 2010

There is still another week until Championship Week officially begins, but tonight (Mar. 2) marks the beginning of three conference tournaments.  

The Big South, Horizon, and Ohio Valley conferences all begin opening round games this evening, and for some it will be their final games of the year.


We will start first with the Big South...

Big South Conference: Quarterfinals , Mar. 2

(Locations at campus sites for top four teams)

No. 1 Coastal Carolina vs. No. 8 VMI, 7:00PM: Coastal Carolina has beaten VMI twice this season and on both occasions has scored over 100 points.

No. 2 Radford vs. No. 7 Charleston Southern, 7:00PM: This could be an interesting game, as the teams split the regular season series. Charleston Southern beat Radford by 15 at home earlier in the year, while Radford needed overtime to dispatch the Buccaneers in the second matchup.

No. 3 Winthrop vs. No. 6 Liberty, 7:00PM: I wonder where Liberty would be if Seth Curry hadn’t transferred to Duke this past offseason.

No. 4 UNC-Asheville vs. No. 5 High Point, 7:00PM: The Bulldogs of UNC-Asheville have only lost three games since Jan. 14. High Point would like to hand them a loss tonight.


On to the Horizon League...

Horizon League: Opening Round, Mar. 2

(Locations at campus sites for top four teams)

* No. 1 Butler and No. 2 Wright State have earned double byes in the Horizon League Tournament.

No. 3 Wisconsin-Green Bay vs. No. 10 Youngstown State, 8:00PM: Green Bay has 20 wins this season, two of which came against Youngstown State.

No. 4 UW-Milwaukee vs. No. 9 Illinois-Chicago, 8:00PM: UIC was 1-14 on the road this season. The opening round of the Horizon League Tournament is at the campus of the higher seed, which would be UW-Milwaukee.

No. 5 Cleveland State vs. No. 8 Loyola (IL), 7:00PM: Cleveland State shocked Wake Forest in the NCAA Tournament last year; they would have to shock the Horizon League Tournament if they want to go dancing again.

No. 6 Valparaiso vs. No. 7 Detroit, 8:00PM: They split the regular season series, and they are the six vs. seven matchup in the opening round. Valparaiso has the home court advantage, however.


Finally, the Ohio Valley Conference...

Ohio Valley Conference: Quarterfinals, Mar. 2

(Locations at campus sites of top four teams)

No. 1 Murray State vs. No. 8 Tennessee State, 7:00PM: The Racers have had the NCAA Tournament on their minds all season. Tonight marks the beginning of achieving that goal.

No. 2 Morehead State vs. No. 7 Jacksonville State, 6:30PM: The second-seeded Eagles just handed Murray State their first conference loss a couple of days ago. They are not intimidated by the Racers’ overall record. They deal with Jacksonville State in the opening round.

No. 3 Austin Peay vs. No. 6 Tennessee Tech, 7:30PM: Both of these teams love to play into the 70s. Expect this game to be somewhere around there.

No. 4 Eastern Illinois vs. No. 5 Eastern Kentucky, 7:30PM: Despite Eastern Kentucky having the same conference record as both EIU and Austin Peay, they drew the short stick in the tiebreaker and don’t even get to host a first round game.


Other conference tournaments beginning soon include the Atlantic Sun and Patriot League, which will begin tomorrow, March 3.  


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