College Basketball: Pitt and Arizona on Upset Alert

Al Dannity | Updated Oct 04, 2017

Pitt could take a big step towards the Big East title this weekend and Arizona can do likewise in the Pac-10. Both must be wary of opponents with their eyes on at-large bids.

Not so fast Steve Lavin St John’s have enjoyed a remarkable turnaround in Steve Lavin’s first year at the helm. The Johnnies have moved from hoping for a NIT bid towards being close to a sure thing for the dance. After upsets over #5 Duke and #13 UConn were followed by quality road wins at Cincinnati and Marquette, the stage looks set for St John’s to make the NCAA Tournament. The Red Storm need just one more big win to be certain of making March Madness. They have a huge opportunity to do so on Saturday at home to #4 Pittsburgh.

The Panthers will be wary of the Johnnies but bring plenty of punch to the table. Having won 5 straight, Pitt knows that the Big East regular season title is almost within reach. A win on Saturday would make the magic number for a share of the championship drop to two. As always Pitt will rely on their two core strengths: dominance on the boards and an ability to share the load. This will be close and slow-paced but I like Pitt to win.

Wildcats wary of Washington The Pac-10’s rehabilitation this season has given hope to College Basketball betting fans out west. Two of the best programs in the conference meet on Saturday when #12 Arizona host Washington. The Huskies need a lot of breaks in order to take the conference title but a road win on Saturday would alleviate any doubts in the eyes of the selection committee. This should prove a high-scoring game with two very accurate shooting teams going head to head. Washington’s road record in conference play has been ugly however and I don’t see much of an improvement coming here. Look for the Wildcats to move closer to the Pac-10 title with a big win on Saturday.

Centenary Gentlemen update In recent weeks we’ve kind of adopted the Centenary Gentlemen due to their run of misery. The Gentlemen dropped to 0-28 on the season when the lost to Oral Roberts on Tuesday night. That extended Centenary’s losing streak to 33 games. It’s still 18 short of the NJIT’s record for Division I but the suffering has surely gone on long enough. To make matters worse their women’s team, known as the Ladies, are 0-22. The best shot for Centenary’s men to snap the streak will come on February 24 when the Westerin Illinois Leathernecks, a team that is 7-18 this year, pay a visit. If the Gentlemen win, then it would surely merit the fans storming the floor. It will also be their penultimate game at this level before dropping to Division III next season.