Originally Published: Mar 9, 2010 11:44 PM CDT
There is very little suspense as we head into this years Big 12 Tournaments in Kansas City. On the mens side, seven teams (Kansas, OSU, Baylor, Texas A&M, Texas, Missouri and Kansas State) are virtually assured of making the NCAA tournament. On the womens side, seven teams (Nebraska, OU, OSU, Iowa State, Baylor, Texas and Texas A&M) are locks for the NCAA tournament. Texas Tech could possibly play its way in.
So what is each team playing for?
OSU Men: Last year the Cowboys were playing to try to secure a trip to the NCAA tournament. They beat the Sooners in the quarterfinals before bowing to Missouri in the semis. This year each win brings the possibility of a higher NCAA seed. The Cowboys would love to avoid an 8 or 9 seed in the NCAA tournament which would bring a second-round game against a top seed.
OU Men: Last year Blake Griffin and the Sooners were being thrown around as a possible number one seed in the NCAA tourney. This year there is seemingly nothing to play for.
OSU Women: The state team that has the most to play for. The Cowgirls need as many wins as possible in order to forge a higher seed in the NCAA tournament. Andrea Rileys NCAA mandated one-game suspension will see her sit OSUs opening-round NCAA tournament game. The higher the seed they get, the lower the quality of opponent they will face in the first round and the larger the likelihood they would win in the first round and then get their star back for round two.
OU Women: If not for Nebraskas runaway regular season, Sherri Coale would be Big 12 Coach of the Year. It seems likely that the Sooners will be in Norman for the first two rounds of the NCAA tournament, but they dont want to put any doubt in the minds of the selection committee.
Prediction on the mens side: Kansas meets red-hot Baylor in the finals with the Jayhawks winning a close game in the 70s. Remember, though, the Bears stunned the Jayhawks in the quarterfinals in OKC last year.
Prediction on the womens side: The recent health issues of Iowa State star Allison Lacey give the Sooners a good chance of coming through that side of the bracket. I say Nebraska and OU in the finals with the Huskers staying unbeaten