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Ranking the Top Conferences in College Basketball 5

Posted on March 04, 2011 by Ray Thompson

Ben Hansbrough and Notre Dame is just one of the teams that makes the Big East the strongest conference in college basketball.

Welcome to Part II of my ranking of the top conferences in Division I college basketball, just in time for the start of the conference tournaments.

Illustrating the volatility of the 2010-11 season, this past weekend, #1 Duke falls to Virginia Tech, who a few days later loses to Boston College, a team on the bubble hoping for an at large bid, pushing Ohio state into the #1 spot in both polls.

BYU suspends one of its marquis players, Brandon Davies, for violating the schools honor code, and they go from Dance Darling to big question mark.  Ranked #3 after beating San Diego state last weekend, BYU, in its first game without Davies in the line-up, is upset by New Mexico losing by a margin of 18 points.  Is this a momentary lapse by a team that has been dominant all season or is Davies that much of an impact player that it changes the dynamics of that team significantly?  Only time will tell.  That is an amazing kick off to the month of March and is why this season is like no other.

With that said, here are my Top 5 Conferences:

Top Conference #5: The Atlantic Coast Conference
No conference represents the volatility of this season quite like the ACC.  This is a conference that at one time looked as though it could send as many as 6 or 7 teams to the tournament and now may be lucky to send 4.  The ACC conference has only two teams in the top 25 in Duke (starting the weekend ranked number 1 and now ranked #4) and North Carolina outside the top ten at #13 with a chance finish tops in the ACC with one more win.  This is a very competitive conference with Florida State and Virginia Tech likely heading to the dance but also includes teams like Boston College, Maryland, Miami, and Clemson who currently find themselves on the outside looking in.  Duke is likely the 2 seed in the East, North Carolina the three seed out of the West, with Florida State the 10 seed and Virginia Tech the 8 seed both coming out of the southeast bracket.  These four teams are a combined 8-9 against ranked opponents with Duke carrying 4 of those wins. So while this conference may only send 4 teams, they will be battle tested teams coming out of a strong conference. Read the rest of this entry →

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      After waiting for 45 years after his retirement, the Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month is finally taking his rightful place as a member of the Baseball Hall of Fame.

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      Discovered on the baseball fields of Cuba by a Minnesota Twin scout, Oliva came to the United States in 1961 and within three years the American League Rookie of the Year. There have been many great MLB players from Cuba, including a new generation of stars today, but it is hard to argue that there has been a better player from the island in MLB than Oliva.

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