Ohio Valley tournament preview


Dates: March 2-5

Site: Nashville, TN

Outlook: Coming into the season, Murray State (23-7, 14-4) and Morehead State (22-9, 13-5) were the hands-down favorites in the OVC. With Kenny Faried coming back for the Golden Eagles and the majority of the Racer’s rotation returning, they were obvious picks.

So it shouldn’t shock you to find out that Murray State and Morehead State earned the two double byes in the OVC tournament, with Murray State winning last week’s battle for first place.

While Murray and Morehead finished No. 1 and No. 2, it didn’t come nearly as easily as we expected. No. 3 seed Austin Peay (19-12, 13-5) won their first six league games, including victories against both Murray State and Morehead State, on the shoulder of TyShawn Edmundson, an 18.0 ppg scorer. And keep an eye on No. 4 Tennessee Tech (18-11, 12-6). The Golden Eagles were swept by both Murray and Morehead, but they have won their last five games heading into the postseason.

Championship game: March 5, 7 p.m. ET on ESPN2

Player to watch: Kenny Faried, Morehead State

He’s a potential first round draft pick. He’s the NCAA’s all-time leading rebounder. He’s plays as hard as anyone in the country. If that isn’t enough, give this a read. Pretty easy to root for him, right?

Champion: Murray State

This is a balanced, experienced team that upset Vanderbilt is last year’s NCAA Tournament and is coming off of a win over Morehead State on Thursday.

Complete tournament bracket

Tournament standings, stats, more

Rob Dauster is the editor of the college basketball website Ballin’ is a Habit. You can find him on twitter @ballinisahabit.