The Big South Conference Tournament kicks off tonight with a pair of games. The seventh seeded Campbell Fighting Camels take on the tenth seeded Presbyterian Blue Hose. While the eight seeded Charleston Southern Buccaneers lock horns with the ninth seeded Longwood Lancers. The only team in conference play the Blue Hose have defeated was the Longwood Lancers, who unfortunately they are not playing. As for aforementioned Lancers, they’ve only won three conference games, oddly the first three. In other words, both these teams appear to be exiting early from this year’s conference tournament.
The schedule are as follows:
Thursday, Feb. 28 (First Round), Big South Network
Game 1: No. 10 Presbyterian at No. 7 Campbell, 7 p.m.
Game 2: No. 9 Longwood at No. 8 Charleston Southern, 7 p.m.
Thursday, March 2 (Quarterfinals), WatchESPN
Game 3: No. 2 UNC Asheville vs. Game 1 winner, 1 p.m.
Game 4: No. 3 Liberty vs. No. 6 Radford, 3 p.m.
Game 5: No. 1 Winthrop vs. Game 2 winner, 7 p.m.
Game 6: No. 4 Gardner-Webb vs. No. 5 High Point, 9 p.m.
Friday, March 3 (Semifinals), WatchESPN
Game 7: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner, 6 p.m.
Game 8: Game 5 winner vs. Game 6 winner, 8 p.m.
Sunday, March 5 (Championship)
Game 9: Game 7 winner vs. Game 8 winner, 1 p.m., ESPN
Prediction: I’ve got the Winthrop Eagles taking the Big South Conference Tournament this year. They’ve dominated conference play, going 15-3, with all three losses coming by three points or less. To boot, two of the losses were decided in overtime. The only knock I’d have on the Eagles, is that two of the conference losses were to the High Point Panthers and Radford Highlanders on their home court. An out of conference loss to the New Hampshire Wildcats at home stings too.
However, according to Ken Pomeroy, the Winthrop Eagles have the conference’s second best offense and defense. The second seeded UNC-Asheville Bulldogs have the conference’s number one offense and defense. In other words, I think these two teams are very likely to be the last two standing.
Anyways, the Eagles have some decent wins to their name, beating the likes of the Illinois Fighting Illini on the road and the Furman Paladins at home. Also, a fourteen point defeat to the Florida St. Seminoles on the road isn’t that bad.
The Big South Conference Tournament games take place on the highest seeds home court. So, advantage the Winthrop Eagles, who have home court advantage throughout. A home court advantage that has been iffy this year against teams they should beat, but home court advantage is always a positive no matter how you look at. The Eagles take it this year!