Maryland didn't disappoint prognosticators in its inaugural Big Ten campaign.
The preseason pick to win the regular season title did so with an undefeated run, becoming just the third team to post a perfect conference record. The last time a Big Ten team won every conference game was the 1998-99 season, when Purdue parlayed an undefeated conference run to a national championship.
For the first time this year, the Pac-12 had a new regular-season champion in Oregon State, after Stanford’s reign of over a decade. It was a year unlike any before seen, with Arizona State zooming into the second spot, and Stanford and Cal – the top two in recent years – grabbed the third and fourth spots.
All four teams have earned a bye on day one of the Pac-12 Tournament, which begins Thursday.
Tournament season is finally upon us and those who confine their viewing to the so-called "major" conferences will be selling themselves short. There's a lot on the line throughout the rest of Division I, including not only the coveted automatic bid that comes along with the conference tournament title but also, in many cases, the chance for an at-large ticket to the Big Dance for the best of the tournament also-rans.
When Washington guard Kelsey Plum began scoring 20, 30-plus points per game regularly last season as a freshman, people took notice. The San Diego, Calif. native ended up 17th in the nation in scoring at year's end.
Seniors Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis and Kiah Stokes have won consecutive national championships. They have been to the Final Four every year. As they entered their Senior Day Saturday, their Connecticut teams are 135-10 during their four seasons at UConn.
Monday night’s clash of the SEC’s heavyweights lived up to its billing and was a back-and-forth affair to the final seconds. The Lady Vols of Tennessee threw everything they had at South Carolina, but it was the Gamecocks left standing as the only undefeated team in league play after the final buzzer sounded. With the victory, South Carolina will control its own destiny in seeking a second consecutive regular-season SEC championship.
If Reshanda Gray and Brittany Boyd accomplish all of their goals, their senior season will end in about six weeks in Tampa, Florida. It would be a fitting finale for the duo, who have lit up the Cal record books during their tenure.
But even if Gray and Boyd don't make a second trip to the Final Four, they have notched a significant accomplishment: helping forge a new culture at Cal, and propelling the program to an elevated status.
SOUTH BEND – Last week, No.4 Notre Dame held Duke to 50 points and an 0-for-12 showing from three-point range. Monday night against No.8 Louisville, the Fighting Irish turned in another solid defensive effort and put themselves one step closer to a No.1 seed in the Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament, by downing Louisville, 68-52.
The Pac 12 race will go all the way to the last conference game next Saturday, after this weekend's results. And the final standings won't resemble initial predictions.
As of Sunday night, Oregon State has a two-game lead over Arizona State, who needed two overtimes to beat USC that afternoon. Had the Trojans won, the Beavers would have clinched the conference title outright.