Mr. I Maryland Sports Correspondent Andy Peden casts his weekly ballot in the so-called Atlantic 11 college hoops poll.
1. Georgetown (21-6, 11-5) — They are trying to hold onto the four seed in the Big East but have a brutal week with ND and Marquette. Right now, they are probably a three or four seed for the Big Dance. I don’t see much upward movement on their seeding unless they win the Big East, but they could drop a few seed lines with a poor finish.
2. UVA (21-7, 8-6) — They just need to get healthy. Sene is still out and Harris hasn’t been the same since his injury. They are hanging on to fourth in the ACC but have a tough week with FSU and MD. I think they are safely in the tournament, but their seeding in getting ugly.
3. VCU (25-6, 15-3) — The Rams are rolling after beating down Mason over the weekend. While they are the two seed in the CAA tournament, I think they are best team in the conference. The CAA has a chance at two teams getting in. If they win two (assuming they play Mason in the semis) but lose in the finals to Drexel, they would be 27-7 with an RPI likely in the 50s. I have a hard time believing a 27-win team doesn’t get it.
4. George Mason (23-8, 14-4) — It’s been a very good first year for Paul Hewitt. I believe the Patriots have to win the CAA tournament to get it. It’s going to be difficult with a likely semifinals match up with VCU in Richmond.
5. Maryland (16-12, 6-8) — All season the Terps beat who they should and lost to the better teams, until Saturday. The loss to GT stings because the Terps could have gotten into the bubble conversation if they beat UNC or UVA this week. With the loss, they are going to have to have to win at least four more games to get a serious consideration.
6. Old Dominion (19-12, 13-5) — It’s been a good season for the Monarchs. They are the four seed in the CAA tournament. One win and they draw Drexel in the semis. Two wins and they are likely to get either VCU or Mason in the finals. They are going to have to win the tournament to get in.
7. Virginia Tech (15-14, 4-10) — Another close loss this week, which has been the theme of the Hokies’ season. They need to close strong this week just to get a NIT bid.
8. Loyola (21-8, 13-5) — It’s been a great year for Patsos and the Greyhounds. They are the two seed in the MAAC and will have to win three starting Saturday. The good news is this team can beat everyone in the conference. Hopefully we see them playing next Monday night against Iona for the bid.
9. Norfolk State (20-9, 11-3) — Two more games to go before the MEAC tournament. The Spartans are locked into being a top-three seed.
10. American (19-10, 10-4) — Locked into the three seed in the Patriot League. With one more win, American will have won at least 20 games in four of the past five seasons.
11. Richmond (15-15, 6-9) — Maybe they get lucky next week in Atlantic City and repeat.
In two weeks, I’m guessing there will be four teams from the A-11 dancing. Georgetown and UVA are obvious. I think VCU gets in by winning the CAA, and I think someone else wins a one-bid conference tournament.