Bucknell is looking to prolong its season in the NIT, but with the NCAA buying out the tournament last year and shrinking the field from 40 teams back to 32, bids are tougher to come by than they used to be. The good news for the Bison is that there have been very few upsets of regular season champions in postseason tournaments, which means fewer automatic NIT bids. Here’s a breakdown of Bucknell’s chances of getting one of those 32 invites.
The Crusaders are in the Field of 65, so now it’s time to look at what kind of seeding they can expect. There aren’t many opportunities left for helpful upsets in other conference tournaments, but Holy Cross did get some help from Albany. Tonight’s Atlantic 10 and MAC championship games are big ones for Ralph Willard’s team. A natural 12 seed almost certainly is out of the question, but moving up to be a high 13 seed could reap rewards in terms of easier opponents.
Predictions are a tough business. Instead of trying to give an exact prediction, we are in the business of previews. Here’s a breakdown of the important edges Holy Cross and Bucknell have on each other:
The first time Holy Cross and Bucknell met up this year, the Crusaders won 65-60 on Jan. 12. The second time, in Lewisburg, the Bison pulled out a 48-45 victory. The stars of the combined two games were Keith Simmons, who scored 37 points in the two contests, and Justin Castleberry, who scored 26 points coming off the bench in both games.