Although three teams have dominated the 2011-12 season – Kentucky, Syracuse and Missouri – there is such parity in college basketball today that a slim difference exists between those who make the NCAA tournament and those who don’t.
Josh Pastner has Top 10 talent at Memphis, and the Tigers' overall record is a bit deceiving.
With under a month until selection Sunday and two weeks until conference tournaments there are only a handful of opportunities left for teams to build their resume for the selection committee.
Here are a few teams that are firmly on the bubble, but are currently playing well are starting to gel at the right time.
Amongst the top of the tepid Pac-12, the Huskies are improving and dangerous. Winners of eight out of their last 10 they have Terrance Ross who is an NBA lottery pick and Tony Wroten is the nation’s best unknown freshman. Wroten must improve on his 20 percent from the three-point line and if Abdul Gaddy can regain the edge he possessed prior to knee surgery and the Huskies can find some consistency - watch out! It is a lot of “ifs” as well as “ands” there but the Huskies could be primed to peak at the right time.
The Tigers have top 10 talent and they are young and dangerous, six of their top players being freshmen and sophomores. The two names to watch out for over the upcoming weeks are Will Barton and Adonis Thomas, both of whom are NBA talents. Their record is deceiving with seven losses, five of which were to ranked opponents and two coming as conference road games; quite frankly this should favor well with the selection committee. Defensive rebounding has been a weakness that needs improving. Last year they tasted the tourney in losing a heartbreaker to Arizona, this year they can go places - be afraid.
The Colonial Conference is a good one that doesn’t get enough respect and it deserves to be a multiple bid league. The Patriots have won nine of their last 10, led by an active frontline led by Mike Morrison and conference player of the year candidate in Ryan Pearson. One of the deeper teams in the country, if they can handle the basketball better (21 turnover per game) they have several scoring threats which provide for a good recipe come March. A tough stretch coming up which includes two dates with VCU could determine conference title. If their perimeter threats can start to shoot better, Patriots can be a difficult out.
Next installment, we will focus on the teams that need to turn things around fast.
Leigh Klein is the owner of Five-Star Basketball Camps and formerly on staff at Texas and Rhode Island. Each year at Five-Star, he trains hundreds of future college basketball and NBA stars such as Michael Jordan, Grant Hill, LeBron James and Kevin Durant. He will be blogging for 247Sports on college basketball and recruiting.
Follow Leigh Klein on Twitter @leighalanklein and let him know what you think about the blog.
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