Mid-Major Report: Teams Try too Polish Their Résumés as March Looms

March is just around the corner people. Strap on your seat belts as we prepare for the wild ride ahead. Here is your recap of a great week of mid-major hoops and a preview of what is to come this week…

Power Rankings:

Gonzaga (26-0, 14-0 WCC)

The ‘Zags continue to roll. With Nigel Williams-Goss leading the charge at the point guard position, I don’t see how this team could lose before the NCAA Tournament.  

St. Mary’s (22-3, 12-2 WCC)

Even with the loss to Gonzaga, the Gaels are still deserving of the number two spot. Jock Landale is an absolute monster in the paint.  

Wichita State (23-4, 13-1 MVC)

The Shockers have won eight straight games by an average margin of 23 points since losing at Illinois State on January 14th. Gregg Marshall has his team gelling at the right time.  

Illinois State (21-5, 13-1 MVC)

The Redbirds have been able to bounce back after the blowout loss to Wichita State a week ago with two solid wins over Drake and Bradley this week. Travelling to Missouri State on Wednesday will be an interesting matchup for Dan Muller’s group. Paris Lee is one of the most improved players in the nation.  

VCU (21-5, 11-2 A-10)

The Rams have been able to rattle off 7 wins in a row, and they show no signs of stopping. They have an easy week coming up with games against Richmond and St. Louis. JeQuan Lewis continues to have an exceptional year.

Dayton (20-5, 11-2 A-10)

Every year, the Flyers seem to be the team to beat in the Atlantic 10. Nothing has changed this year. UD is tied for first in the A-10 and will get into the tournament, with or without an automatic bid.

Middle Tennessee (22-4, 12-1 C-USA)

The Blue Raiders are the most impressive team that no one is talking about. Their great play leaves them a top Conference USA, with only a few blemishes on the record. MTSU will bust some brackets come March.

Akron (22-4, 12-1 MAC)

Akron has been a very fun team to watch this year. anchored by big man Isaiah Johnson, the Zips have won 12 of 13 conference games. UA takes on Kent State and Bowling Green this week in what should be easy wins.

Just Missed the Cut: New Mexico State, UNC Wilmington, Monmouth, Vermont, Valparaiso 

Players of the Week: 

Justin Robinson, Monmouth

Robinson went OFF in a MAAC win over Siena 102-82 scoring 40 points on 14-20 from the field. Monmouth on the floor is making more noise than their bench mob this year.  

Jequan Lewis, VCU

Mr. Do it all for the Rams. Lewis scored 34 points in the win over St. Joe’s on Tuesday. With Lewis leading the charge, VCU could be a sneaky team in March once again.  

Games to Watch:

Friday, February 17

Kent State @ Akron (7:00 PM ET; ESPNU)

VCU @ Richmond (9:00 PM ET; ESPN2)

Saturday, February 18

St. Bonaventure @ Dayton (2:00 PM ET; NBCSN)

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