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363 to 1 - NCAA Men’s Basketball Counts Down to a National Champion - 7 tournaments in action today

Today we drop below 300

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: NOV 18 Women’s - Jacksonville at Florida State Photo by David Allio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Today college basketball will drop below 300 teams still in the running for the national championship as 7 conference tournaments are in action including our first conference semifinals with the Atlantic Sun. Continue to countdown with us, or simply scroll down to see who is playing today.

Protesters Demand Every Vote Be Counted Photo by Jessica Rinaldi/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Wednesday, March 1

We start our tour of Wednesday’s eliminations in the Southland. The Southland entered their final day of the regular season needing to trim their field by two. Lamar and McNeese State trailed Incarnate Word by 1 game.

Lamar needed a win and some help to advance to the Southland tournament bracket. Things looked good as they led Nicholls on the road by 14 at the half, but Lamar scored just 20 points in the second half, blowing the lead and ending their season. Their first year in the Southland (after returning from the WAC) was an improvement though. Lamar went from winless against D1 competition to 6-22 (5-13). The Cardinals have not made the NCAA tournament since 2012.

With the Lamar loss, McNeese State had the opportunity to advance to the Southland tournament field with a win, an Incarnate Word loss, and a Southeastern Louisiana win. They took care of their business, overcoming a 13 point deficit with a 51 point second half to win 80-73. Northwestern State also obliged them by defeating former Boilermaker Carson Cunningham’s Incarnate Word 81-64 meaning the result of the Southeast Louisiana - Houston Christian game would determine which of McNeese State - Incarnate Word was eliminated. SE Louisiana went on the road and won 80-64, ending Incarnate Word’s season. The Cardinals (yes, Incarnate Word and Lamar are both the Cardinals) finish the season at 9-19 (6-12). They have not made the Division 1 tournament since becoming eligible post transition in 2018.

Only three conference tournaments were in action as we saw the opening rounds of the Ohio Valley, Big South, and NEC. The Ohio Valley didn’t even see any new eliminations as both losses were by tournament ineligible teams.

In the Northeast Conference quarterfinals, long shot Long Island fell behind 21 points at the half to top seeded Merrimack. Even though the Sharks won the second half, the final margin of victory was still 15 points (76-91). It was a rough first year for head coach Rod Strickland, as Long Island’s only Division 1 win came against conference mate Sacred Heart. They also had wins against Mount Saint Vincent and Purchase. The Sharks end their season at 1-26 against Division 1 competition and are the worst team in D1 this year by most metrics. They last made the tournament in 2018.

Staying in the NEC, fan favorite St. Francis New York went on the road to Fairleigh Dickinson and lost 75-83. Although they cut the deficit to four with 51 seconds left, the Terriers would not score again and fall to 12-16 (7-9). They are the first of our original NMTC members to be eliminated this season. We wish them better luck next season.

Central Connecticut had a back and forth first half against St. Francis Pennsylvania, but in the second half fell behind by as many as 20 before losing 69-83. The Blue Devils started the season with 9 straight losses but finish the year with a 10-22 (7-9) record. This marks the 16th consecutive season since they last made the tournament.

Wagner dropped the 4/5 game in the NEC tournament to Sacred Heart 55-67. Senior Brandon Brown had a 15 point, 15 rebound performance for the Seahawks but it was not enough to advance his team. Wagner is 15-13 (8-8) but has a NET ranking in the 300s so they are eliminated. This marks the 20th year in a row they have failed to make the NCAA tournament.

NCAA Basketball: St. Francis-NY at St. John
It will happen one of these years Terriers
Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

In the Big South, Charleston Southern trailed by 13 points in the first half, but overcame that deficit to retake the lead with 2:17 to play. Trailing by two, High Point’s Bryant Randleman made just one of two free throws with 23 seconds remaining. Charleston Southern would counter with a 1 of 2 trip of their own. A missed High Point three pointer with 9 seconds remaining was rebounded by Charleston Southern who dribbled out the clock to end the High Point Panthers’ season. High Point wraps their season at 12-17 (6-12). They have yet to make the NCAA tournament since jumping to Division 1 for the 2000 season.

The Blue Hose of Presbyterian made more of a game of it than I thought they would and even led by 1 point with 5 minutes to go. In the end though they fell to Campbell 63-68 and at 3-27 (1-17) against Division 1 opponents their first NCAA tournament bid will have to wait at least another season.

NCAA Basketball: Presbyterian at South Carolina Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports

Teams eliminated Wednesday, March 1:

  1. Long Island Sharks
  2. St. Francis NY Terriers :(
  3. Central Connecticut Blue Devils
  4. Wagner Seahawks
  5. High Point Panthers
  6. Presbyterian Blue Hose
  7. Lamar Cardinals
  8. Incarnate Word Cardinals

That brings the numbers to...

Number of Teams Eligible for Auto Bids - 317 (87.33%)

Number of Teams Eliminated - 46 (12.67%)

Number of Teams Eliminated since Yesterday - 8 (2.20%)

Teams Under Consideration for At Large Bids Only - 0

The day ahead

Missouri Valley Conference Round 1 - games at 1/330/7/930PM Eastern

Win or be eliminated mode (both teams)

#8 Northern Iowa Panthers (12-17, 9-11) v. #9 Illinois State Redbirds (11-20, 6-14)

#5 Indiana State Sycamores (19-11, 13-7) v. #12 Evansville Purple Aces (5-26, 1-19)

#7 Murray State Racers (15-14, 11-9) v. #10 Valparaiso Beacons (10-20, 5-15)

#6 Missouri State Bears (15-14, 12-8) v. #11 Illinois-Chicago Flames (11-19, 4-16)

West Coast Conference Round 1 - games at 9/1130PM Eastern

Win or be eliminated mode (both teams)

#8 Portland Pilots (11-18, 5-11) v. #9 San Diego Toreros (9-19, 4-12)

#7 Pacific Tigers (13-16, 7-9) v. #10 Pepperdine Waves (8-21, 2-14)

Sun Belt Round 2 - games at 1230/3/6/830PM Eastern

Win or be eliminated mode (both teams)

#8 South Alabama Jaguars (14-15, 9-9) v. #9 Appalachian State Mountaineers (13-15, 9-9)

#5 Troy Trojans (16-12, 11-7) v. #13 Arkansas State Red Wolves (10-19, 4-14)

#6 Old Dominion Monarchs (18-11, 11-7) v. #11 Texas State Bobcats (12-17, 6-12)

#7 Georgia Southern Eagles (13-15, 9-9) v. #10 Louisiana Monroe Warhawks (8-20, 7-11)

Ohio Valley Conference Quarterfinals - games at 730/10PM Eastern

Win or be eliminated mode (both teams)

#3 Tennessee Martin Skyhawks (15-13, 10-8) v. #6 SIU-Edwardsville Cougars (15-13, 9-9)

#4 Tennessee State Tigers (14-13, 10-8) v. #5 Southeast Missouri State Redhawks (13-16, 10-8)

Patriot League Quarterfinals - games at 7/8PM Eastern

Win or be eliminated mode (both teams)

#1 Colgate Raiders (22-8, 17-1) v. #8 Loyola MD Greyhounds (11-19, 7-11)

#2 Navy Midshipmen (17-12, 11-7) v. #7 American Eagles (16-14, 7-11)

#3 Lehigh Mountain Hawks (14-13, 11-7) v. #6 Lafayette Leopards (9-22, 7-11)

#4 Army Black Knights (14-15, 10-8) v. #5 Boston Terriers (14-16, 8-10)

Horizon League Quarterfinals - games at 7/8PM Eastern

Win or be eliminated mode (both teams)

#1 Youngstown State Penguins (21-8, 15-5) v. #8 Detroit Mercy Titans (13-18, 9-11)

#4 Northern Kentucky Norse (17-12, 14-6) v. #5 Oakland Grizzlies (12-18, 11-9)

#2 Milwaukee Panthers (17-10, 14-6) v. #7 Wright State Raiders (16-14, 10-10)

#3 Cleveland State Vikings (18-11, 14-6) v. #6 Robert Morris Colonials (14-16, 10-10)

Atlantic Sun Semifinals - games at 7PM Eastern

Win or be eliminated mode (both teams)

#1 Kennesaw State Owls (21-8, 15-3) v. #5 Lipscomb Bisons (17-12, 11-7)

Win or join at-large bid only v. win or be eliminated mode

#2 Liberty Flames (22-7, 15-3) v. #3 Eastern Kentucky Colonels (17-12, 12-6)


The SWAC is one of just three conferences that will still eliminate additional teams prior to the start of their respective conference tournaments. Arkansas Pine Bluff and Alabama State sit a half game behind Bethune Cookman and Texas Southern but play tonight with the opportunity to pull even in the standings going into Saturday’s season finales. Neither Arkansas Pine Bluff nor Alabama State are eliminated with a loss, but they make things really difficult on themselves with a loss.

Other conference races

MAC play finishes on Friday. Three teams still need to be eliminated.

Ivy League play wraps up on Saturday. One team still needs to be eliminated.


Who is the saddest elimination so far?

This poll is closed

  • 10%
    St. Francis New York
    (3 votes)
  • 17%
    (5 votes)
  • 7%
    (2 votes)
  • 64%
    Wait, is Minnesota really still in the running?
    (18 votes)
28 votes total Vote Now