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Your Championship “Week” Update: Sunday, March 8, 2020

Two monster shots to win tournaments yesterday leads to three more title games today!

NCAA Basketball: Missouri Valley Conference Tournament-Bradley vs Drake
Darrell Brown and Bradley are in the MVC title game.
Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

We’ve got two teams officially in the NCAA tournament, with Utah State beating San Diego State in the Mountain West tournament, and Belmont topping Murray State in the Ohio Valley tournament. Both of them were quite the thrilling end to the game. First, here’s Sam Merrill’s shot that won the MW title for the Aggies:

Here’s the play that won Belmont the OVC championship:

I swear that I have seen Belmont run that exact play to win a conference tournament at some point in the past. It all felt very familiar to me.

The Missouri Valley continued to be a bit bonkers, as #7 Valparaiso advanced out of the semifinals. That’s not that big of a deal, as they beat #6 Missouri State because that entire tournament lost its mind on Friday, but it’s still a #7 seed in the conference title game. They’ll face #4 Bradley in one of three title games that we’ll see today. The other two were set up previous to yesterday. The ASun and the Big South uses campus sites for their event, so there needed to be some time off between games.

The SoCon went sideways in the quarterfinals yesterday, with top seeded East Tennessee State coming out as the the only favored seed to win. The #5, #7, and #6 seeds all join the Buccaneers in the semifinals, which is pretty wild. ETSU is still the heavy favorite to win, I would imagine, but hey, anything’s possible.

What else do we heave? #2 South Dakota State got bounced in the Summit League. #10 Coastal Carolina advanced past #7 UT-Arlington in the Sun Belt first round. #5 San Francisco bumped out #4 Pacific in the West Coast quarterfinals. Upsets, but not whackadoodle stuff like the MVC and the SoCon.

NIT Automatic Bids

Northern Iowa (MVC)
Radford (Big South)

NCAA Tournament Automatic Bids

Belmont (OVC)
Utah State (Mountain West)

Here’s the schedule for the day, with all times Central as always.

ASUN CHAMPIONSHIP (ESPN)

2pm: #3 Lipscomb (16-15) at #1 Liberty (29-4)

BIG SOUTH CHAMPIONSHIP (ESPN)

12pm: #5 Hampton (15-18) at #2 Winthrop (23-10)

CAA QUARTERFINALS (FloHoops)

11am: #1 Hofstra (23-8) vs #8 Drexel (14-18)
1:30pm: #4 College of Charleston (17-13) vs #5 Delaware (21-10)
5pm: #2 William & Mary (21-10) vs #7 Elon (12-20)
7:30pm: #3 Towson (19-12) vs #6 Northeastern (15-15)

MISSOURI VALLEY CHAMPIONSHIP (CBS)

1pm: #4 Bradley (22-11) vs #7 Valparaiso (19-15)

PATRIOT LEAGUE SEMIFINALS (CBS Sports Network)

11am: #7 Bucknell (14-19) at #3 Boston University (19-13)
1pm: #5 Lafayette (19-11) at #1 Colgate (24-8)

SOCON SEMIFINALS (ESPN+)

3pm: #1 East Tennessee State (28-4) vs #5 Western Carolina (19-11)
5:30pm: #6 Chattanooga (20-12) vs #7 Wofford (18-15)

SUMMIT LEAGUE QUARTERFINALS (ESPN+)

6pm: #4 Oral Roberts (16-13) vs #5 Nebraska-Omaha (16-15)
8:30pm: #3 South Dakota (20-11) vs #6 North Dakota (13-17)