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Bubble Banter: Nebraska’s marquee win, St. Joseph’s problematic loss

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There are eight days left until Selection Sunday. Every morning from now until the bracket comes out, we’ll help you get caught up on the happenings with impact on the bubble from the night before.

Our latest bracket projection can be found here.

WINNERS

Nebraska: The Cornhuskers knocked off No. 9 Wisconsin, picking up a marquee victory that could very well get them into the NCAA tournament. Tim Miles’ crew is now 8-8 against the top 100 with wins over Wisconsin (fifth in the RPI) and Ohio State at home as well as the win at Michigan State. That’s strong, but is it strong enough to overcome three sub-100 losses? Nebraska is the fourth-seed in the Big Ten tournament and should get Ohio State in the quarterfinals. Win that, and they’re in.

MOREBrowse through all of our conference tournament previews

Minnesota: The Golden Gophers won today, knocking off Penn State in their Senior Night, but that doesn’t do much to improve their resume. The 19-12 record can be explained away by a top five strength of schedule. Wins over Wisconsin, Ohio State and Iowa are nice, but a pair of sub-100 losses and a 3-9 record away from the Barn isn’t. The Gophers get Penn State in the opening round of the Big Ten tournament. They likely need to win that and beat Wisconsin in the second round to really have a chance.

LOSERS

St. Joseph’s: The Hawks lost at home to La Salle on Sunday, their second straight loss and one that will slide them closer to the wrong side of the bubble’s cutline. The RPI in the mid-30s is nice, and they have four top 50 wins, including top 15 foes UMass and VCU. But they are just 5-8 against the top 100 with a non-conference SOS that checks in at 128th. St. Joe’s is the No. 4 seed in the A-10 tournament, which means that, barring an upset, they’ll lock horns with Dayton in the quarterfinals. That could be a play-in game for a spot in a play-in game.

Florida State: The Seminoles whiffed on a chance to knock off Syracuse on Sunday. They needed the win to get themselves back into the bubble mix. They’re now a longshot to get an at-large bid.

Iowa State’s starting center Jameel McKay remains suspended

Iowa State forward Jameel McKay celebrates on the court at the end of an NCAA college basketball game against Oklahoma, Monday, Jan. 18, 2016, in Ames, Iowa. Iowa State won 82-77. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
(AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
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Steve Prohm announced on Monday that starting center Jameel McKay will not be in the lineup on Wednesday when the Cyclones take on Texas Tech.

“He’ll practice today because I want him in practice,” Prohm said, “but game-wise, he’s suspended.”

McKay did not make the trip to Stillwater with the team on Saturday, where Iowa State beat Oklahoma State, 64-59. Prohm has not gotten into specifics regarding the cause of McKay’s suspension, but it’s reportedly an issue with the way he has been practicing. McKay is dealing with a nagging knee injury, which may play a role in the situation as well.

“My hope is he’ll be with us on Saturday,” Prohm said.

AP POLL: Villanova climbs to No. 1 in the country.

Jay Wright
(AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
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Like the Coaches Poll, Villanova found themselves No. 1 in the AP Poll during the regular season for the first time in the history of the program.

And like the Coaches Poll, there isn’t much in the way of a consensus when it comes to who is the No. 1 team, as there are six teams that received No. 1 votes in the poll this week.

[NEW PODCAST]

[LATEST BRACKETOLOGY]

The biggest shock to me?

The No. 1 team in the NBC Sports Top 25, Iowa, received just 11 first place votes and is ranked fourth in the AP Poll.

They were ranked fifth in the Coaches Poll.

Can we get Fran McCaffery the love they deserve?

Here is the rest of the AP Poll:

1. Villanova (20-3, 32 first-place votes)
2. Maryland (21-3, 13)
3. Oklahoma (19-3, 7)
4. Iowa (19-4, 11)
5. Xavier (21-2)
6. Kansas (19-4, 1)
7. Virginia (19-4, 1)
8. Michigan State (20-4)
9. North Carolina (19-4)
10. West Virginia (19-4)
11. Oregon (18-4)
12. Miami (FL) (18-4)
13. Louisville (19-4)
14. Iowa State (17-6)
15. Texas A&M (18-5)
16. SMU (20-2)
17. Arizona (19-5)
18. Purdue (19-5)
19. Dayton (19-3)
20. Providence (18-6)
21. Baylor (17-6)
22. Kentucky (17-6)
23. USC (18-5)
24. Texas (16-7)
25. Wichita State (17-6)

DROPPED OUT: No. 22 Indiana, No. 25 South Carolina
NEW ADDITIONS: No. 23 USC, No. 24 Texas