A few mid-week musings regarding Iowa State basketball for you on a Tuesday…
I spent my entire Monday in Ames. Between Iowa State’s weekly press conference, five hours at a coffee shop and covering the most ridiculously entertaining women’s hoops game of all-time, I discussed about this bubble situation more than I ever thought was possible.
Everybody wants to know scenarios. What do I think? Hey, I think the same things as the majority of you when it comes to this bubble…
My gut tells me that if Iowa State beats Oklahoma State tomorrow night that the Cyclones will go dancing. My gut also once told me that Travaris Jackson was going to be a good NFL quarterback. You get my point…
Seriously though – let’s just say that Iowa State beats No. 13 Oklahoma State tomorrow night and loses at West Virginia on Saturday in Morgantown. That would put the Cyclones at fifth in the Big 12 with a conference tournament to go (and a date against Oklahoma more than likely in the first round).
Maybe I’m crazy but the Big 12 is a five-bid league folks. No doubt. Let’s go with everybody’s favorite “bracketologist,” Jerry Palm’s latest projections for a moment. He currently has Iowa State and Baylor listed in his “first four out,” making the Big 12 a four-bid league.
No way. No way! NO WAY!
Ain’t gonna happen. It’s a five-bid league.
Again, I’ve been wrong before. Remember, I’m also the guy who picked Iowa State to win out leading up to Saturday’s loss at Oklahoma.
But I just don’t see the Big 12 only getting four teams into the NCAA Tournament and if you don’t trust me, CLICK HERE to read the latest blog from Iowa State’s Steve Malchow. This is a guy who has forgotten more about NCAA Tournament’s than I will ever know.
Don’t count your eggs before they have hatched right?
Yeah well tough. When you’re a good-for-nothing hack blogger like I am, you can do stuff like this.
Let’s talk hypothetical’s shall we?
When it comes to possibly going deep in the NCAA Tournament (yes I fully realize that Iowa State has to make it there first so just relax), being an 11 or 12 seed is Iowa State’s best bet. I’ll stick with Jerry Palm’s projections for this, just because I know how much you all love him.
Palm’s six-seeds (whom Iowa State would play if it is an 11-seed) are: Pittsburg, Oregon Wisconsin and Notre Dame.
Palm’s five-seeds (whom Iowa State would play if it is a 12-seed) are: Butler, UCLA, Oklahoma State and UNLV.
The winner of the 6-11 game gets a three-seed in the third round. Palm’s current three-seeds are: Michigan, Florida, Michigan State and Arizona.
The winner of the 5-12 game gets a four-seed in the third round. Palm’s current four-seeds are: Syracuse, Saint Louis, Kansas State and Marquette.
Good teams…Yes. Unbeatable teams like Kentucky last year? Hardly. Upsets happen all of the time in the Big Dance and as ESPN’s Jay Williams put it on last night’s installment of "College Basketball Live," Iowa State will be a scary team for any opponent should the Cyclones qualify for the NCAA Tournament.
You guys get the point. While Iowa State would much rather be in the position where it doesn’t have to sweat things right now compared to where it currently is, this whole 11 or 12 seed scenario might not be the worst thing in the world should things work out that way.
Remember the atmosphere for the Kansas game eight days ago?
This team is going to need that effort from Iowa State’s fan base tomorrow night.
Kansas scored 108 points against Iowa State last week and I think that a guy can make a serious argument that the Jayhawks are a better match-up for the Cyclones than Oklahoma State is. Oh yeah – the Cowboys have won 10-of-11.
Is it a must-win? No. Iowa State can still make the tournament will a loss tomorrow night. However, it is a critical, critical basketball game.
Hilton should be insane.