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Duke, Georgetown, Kentucky Fall

A total of 10 conference champions will be decided on Saturday; Duke, Georgetown and Kentucky will not be among them.

Friday’s extensive slate of college basketball saw defeats for all three schools. For Duke and Georgetown, the chance to secure a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament may be lost, while Kentucky could be missing the tournament altogether.

Big East Roundup

Trevor Cooney and Syracuse knocked-off Georgetown at the third (and most important) time of asking.

Trevor Cooney and Syracuse knocked-off Georgetown at the third (and most important) time of asking.

It took three attempts, but No. 19 Syracuse (26-8, 11-7 Big East) finally had the answer for No. 5 Georgetown (25-6, 14-4 Big East). It was fitting to watch these two Big East staples take to the floor one last time and even more fitting that regulation wasn’t enough time to separate the two. The Orange would ultimately squeeze-by the Hoyas 58-55 in overtime, thanks to Brando Triche’s go-ahead basket. The Hoyas will now most likely take a No. 2 seed in the NCAA tournament, thanks in part to what happened in the other semifinal game.

No. 4 Louisville (28-5, 14-4 Big East) went a long way to staking one of those tournament top seeds with a 69-57 defeat of No. 24 Notre Dame (25-9, 11-7 Big East). It is the third straight year the Cardinals have knocked the Irish out of the Big East Tournament at the semifinal stage. The side will now look to win a second straight championship and lockdown a No. 1 seed in the process. The Cardinals opened as 7/5 favorites to win the tournament, and are currently looking good for the money. Notre Dame meanwhile leaves the Big East with nothing to show for it.

Louisville will meet Syracuse in the final of the Big East tournament at Madison Square Garden on Saturday evening (8:30 PM ET). The Cardinals will look to win their third title since joining the conference in 2005-06, while the Orange, a conference original, will look to secure a fifth championship, and first since 2006.

ACC Roundup


Maryland got after Duke, causing one of the biggest upsets on Friday’s schedule.

No. 2 Duke (27-5, 14-4 ACC) came unglued against Maryland (22-11, 8-10 ACC) for the second time this season on Friday, falling to an 83-74 defeat at Greensborough Coliseum. Dez Wells had 30 points for the Terrapins, who restricted the usually sharp-shooting Blue Devils to just 4-25 from beyond the arc, and limited Ryan Kelly to just eight points. Duke had been 10/11 favorites to win the ACC tournament.

Maryland’s upset win put the end to a potential mouth-watering semifinal matchup between the Blue Devils and Tar Heels. North Carolina (23-9, 12-6 ACC) cruised to victory Friday, handing Florida State (18-15, 9-9 ACC) a lopsided 83-62 defeat.

North Carolina will meet Maryland in the tournament’s second semifinal on Saturday (3:00 PM ET).

On the other side of the bracket, No. 9 Miami (25-6, 15-3 ACC) defeated Boston College (16-17, 7-11 ACC) 69-58, advancing to Saturday’s semifinals. The Hurricanes let an early lead slip, allowing the Eagles back into the game. An explosive second half from Shane Larkin sealed the deal though.

North Carolina State (24-9, 11-7 ACC) emerged victorious over the higher-seeded Virginia (21-11, 11-7), winning by a score of 75-56. Like the Hurricanes, the Wolfpack used a strong second half to put the game away, although the Cavaliers never really looked to be in this one.

Miami and Virginia will meet in the first of Saturday’s semifinals (1:00 PM ET).

SEC Roundup

Coach Calipari saw his Kentucky Wildcats fall to Vanderbilt, potentially losing a spot in the NCAA tournament in the process.

Coach Calipari saw his Kentucky Wildcats fall to Vanderbilt, potentially losing a spot in the NCAA tournament in the process.

Kentucky (21-11, 12-6 SEC) will be at the mercy of the selection committee on Sunday, after losing 64-48 to Vanderbilt (16-16, 8-10 SEC) in the SEC tournament quarterfinals. The Wildcats were outclassed in the first half and trailed by 14 going into the break. John Calipari’s side failed to regain ground in the second half. On the very periphery of NCAA tournament talk before this game, the Wildcats’ poor performance might have been the final nail in the coffin.

Ole Miss (24-8, 12-6 SEC) may be headed in the other direction. The Rebels put together a stunning comeback, hurdling a 14-point deficit to defeat Missouri (23-10, 11-7 SEC) on a Derrick Millinghaus bucket with 1.1 seconds left to play. On the outside looking in, a win like this could play big in the eyes of the committee.

Ole Miss can further impress the selectors in Saturday’s semifinal matchup against Vanderbilt (3:00 PM ET).

Was it not for Kentucky’s loss, No. 13 Florida (25-6, 14-4 SEC) might have been the headline in the SEC after Friday’s tournament action. The Gators opened tournament play by demolishing an LSU (19-12, 9-9 SEC) side that had upset Georgia one round earlier. The Gators had a 15-point lead at the half and never looked back. 2/5 favorites to win the SEC tournament before play started, bookmakers might not be wrong on this one.

With a 58-48 win over the Volunteers, Alabama (21-11, 12-6 SEC) kept its NCAA tournament hopes alive, while Tennessee (20-12, 11-7 SEC) may have seen its bubble burst. Levi Randolph and Trevor Releford combined for 29 points for the Tide, while the team shot 50 percent from behind the arc. The Vols’ poor shooting (32% from the field, 22% from three-point range, and 50% at the free throw line) ultimately sealed the team’s fate.

Florida and Alabama will clash in the first of Saturday’s semifinal games (1:00 PM ET).

At time of publication, bookmakers had yet to draw up the lines on Saturday’s games. Keep checking in with the BettingSports.com NCAAB odds page this morning for up-to-date odds and game previews.

Tournament Encyclopedia

Friday’s Results

ACC (Quarterfinals)

Maryland 83, No. 2 Duke 74

No. 9 Miami (FL) 69, Boston College 58

North Carolina State 75, Virginia 56

North Carolina 83, Florida State 62

Big East (Semifinals)

No. 4 Louisville 69, No. 24 Notre Dame 57

No. 19 Syracuse 58, No. 5 Georgetown 55 (OT)

SEC (Quarterfinals)

No. 13 Florida 80, LSU 58

Alabama 58, Tennessee 48

Vanderbilt 64, Kentucky 48

Ole Miss 64, Missouri 62

Saturday’s Schedule

ACC (Semifinals)

No. 9 Miami (FL) vs. North Carolina State (1:00 PM ET)

North Carolina vs. Maryland (3:00 PM ET)

Big East (Final)

No. 4 Louisville vs. No. 19 Syracuse (8:30 PM ET)

SEC (Semifinals)

Florida vs. Alabama (1:00 PM ET)

Vanderbilt vs. Ole Miss (3:00 PM ET)

Saturday’s Finals Schedule (in full)

The conference champion will be decided in the following conferences on Saturday.

SWAC: Southern vs. Prairie View A&M (4:30 PM ET)

MEAC: Morgan vs. North Carolina A&T (5:00 PM ET)

Big 12: No. 7 Kansas vs. No. 11 Kansas State (6:00 PM ET)

MAC: Akron vs. Ohio (6:30 PM ET)

Big East: No. 4 Louisville vs. No. 19 Syracuse (8:30 PM ET)

Great West: Houston Baptist vs. Chicago State (8:30 PM ET)

Southland: SF Austin vs. NW State (8:30 PM ET)

Pac-12: No. 21 UCLA vs. Oregon (11:00 PM ET)

WAC: Texas-Arlington vs. New Mexico State (11:00 PM ET)

C-USA: No. 20 Memphis vs. Southern Miss (11:30 PM ET)

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