St. Joseph’s on the bubble, Temple finishes season strong
Of the six city basketball programs, just two appear headed to the NCAA tournament next week.
Villanova is ranked No. 6 in the country and has already won the Big East’s regular season crown. But in the Atlantic 10, St. Joseph’s appears to be a clear bubble team.
According to ESPN’s Joe Lunardi, the Hawks are among the “last four in,” along with Xavier, BYU and Oregon.
If the tournament started today, Lunardi has St. Joes as a No. 11 seed. But that is assuming they don’t falter in this weekend’s Atlantic 10 tournament.
The Hawks are seeded in the No. 4 spot and will get a double-bye into the quarterfinals at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
The Explorers have an outside chance of making the tournament, but with a 15-15 record, they will need to win the A-10 tournament outright.
La Salle pulled off a big victory over St. Joes Sunday to end the season and earn the eight-seed. They face St. Bonaventure Thursday at noon.
Temple had an awful regular season, and though they came on with a few big wins down the stretch, they will need to go all the way in the AAC tournament to get a berth in the NCAA’s.
The Owls will need to defeat Central Florida Wednesday, a 9:30 start on ESPN 2, and then No. 1-seeded Cincinnati just to make the semifinals. They will need to win four straight games to make the Big Dance.
Drexel and Penn are both ineligible for the NCAA tournament. The Dragons faltered in the Colonial’s second round to Northeastern.
Penn and the Ivy League have no conference tournament.