March 4, 2013
Vols staying alive for NCAA bid
Tennessee (17-11, 9-7) enters the final week of the season knee-deep in the trappings of March Madness. In a reflection of how unsettled the NCAA Tournament landscape is at the moment, the Vols appeared to have played their into the field after losing on the road at Georgia on Saturday.
That says more about the totally unpredictable nature of college basketball right now--or at least the team's hovering around the infamous bubble--than it does about Georgia being viewed as a 'quality loss.'
The truth of the matter is that thanks to losses by teams with similar tourney resueme´s the Vols dodged a proverbial bullet this weekend. What looked like a potentially killer loss on Saturday afternoon in Athens looked a lot less damaging after bubble brethren like Villanova, Kentucky, Baylor, Ole Miss, Arizona State, Iowa State and Alabama all fell over the weekend as well.
As of Monday morning, respected bracket prognosticators Joe Lunardi of ESPN and Jerry Palm of CBSsportsline both had the Vols projected to be in the field of 68. Barely.
Lunardi had the Vols listed as the 68th team in the field, or his 'last team in.' Palm has Tennessee slated as a No. 12 seed and in a play in-game. Both scenarios suggests that any toehold Tennessee has in projected bracket is tenuous at best.
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