After 14 hectic days, Championship Week is finally over. 31 tickets to the Big Dance were automatically punched in a two-week span which featured some monumental upsets, brilliant individual performances and classic battles. Before you fill out your brackets, take a look back at who did what over the past 14 days.
News and Notes:
– Of the 30 conference tournament champions, eleven were No.1-seeds, ten were No.2-seeds, five were No.3-seeds and two were No.7-seeds. One No.4-seed and one No.6-seed won as well.
– The two No.7-seed champions, Western Kentucky (Sun Belt) and Louisville (Big East), and the only No.6-seed champion Colorado were the only teams to win four games in four days en route to a conference tournament championship.
– Michigan State was the only No.1-seed in a BCS-conference to win the tournament championship.
– Missouri had the highest scoring average of any championship-winning team. They scored 259 points in three games, for an average of 86.3ppg.
– Four No.1-seeds did not win a single game in their conference tournaments. No.1 Temple lost to No.8 UMass, No.1 Middle Tennessee lost to No.9 Arkansas State, No.1 Savannah State lost to No.8 Bethune-Cookman and No.1 Washington lost to No.9 Oregon State.
– Four NCAA Tournament teams did not win a single conference tournament game. As mentioned, Temple lost to UMass, No.3 Iowa State lost to No.6 Texas, No.5 Kansas State lost to No.4 Baylor, and No.8 West Virginia lost to No.9 UConn.
– Three teams lost championship games on their home floor. No.1 Stony Brook lost to No.2 Vermont in the America East finals, No.1 Valaparaiso lost to No.3 Detroit in the Horizon League finals, and No.1 Bucknell lost to No.2 Lehigh in the Patriot League finals.
Player of the Week: C/F – Andrew Nicholson – St. Bonaventure’s
The 6-foot-8 native of Ontario was the primary reason the No.4-seed Bonnies won the Atlantic-10 Tournament. He scored 26 points in the championship game against Xavier, and on the week he averaged 23.3ppg, 10.0rpg, 5.3bpg and 1.3apg. The versatile big-man shot 55 percent from the field (21-of-38) including 50 percent (4-of-8) from beyond the arc. He was also shot a staggering 89 percent (24-of-27) from the foul line. Nicholson is projected as a late-first round selection in the 2012 NBA draft and will be a difficult match-up for Bernard James of Florida State, who the Bonnies play in the second round of the NCAA Tournament
All-Championship Week Team:
– G – C.J. McCollum – Lehigh:
The sharpshooting guard scored 71 points in three games to lead the No.2-seed Mountain Hawks to the Patriot League Tournament Championship. As good as McCollum was during the regular season, he was named Patriot League PoY, he was even better in the postseason. He averaged 23.6ppg, 6.0rpg, 5.0apg, 4.0spg, and 1.0bpg, and recorded a season-high seven steals against Colgate in the quarterfinals
– G – Casper Ware – Long Beach State:
The diminutive point guard scored 66 points in three games, leading the 49ers to their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2007. The senior scored 33 points in the championship game against UC-Santa Barbara, the team that bounced the 49ers out of the past two Big West tournaments. He finished
– G – Mike James – Lamar: His 26 points in the Southland Tournament finals propelled the No.3-seed Cardinals to an unexpected birth in the NCAA Tournament. He finished the week averaging 20.3ppg, 5.3rpg, 2,7apg and 1.3spg.
– F – Doug McDermott – Creighton:
McDermott followed up his All-American caliber season with an equally impressive showing in the MVC Tournament. He scored 33 points in the championship game, which the Bluejays defeated Illinois State 83-79 in overtime. He averaged 24.3ppg during Championship Week, and shot 65 percent (24-of-37) from the field and 78 percent (18-of-23) from the foul line.
– F – Kim English – Missouri:
The senior swing-man was the driving force behind the Tigers’ dominant championship run in the Big-XII Tournament, the school’s final Big-XII tournament before jumping ship to the SEC. Coming off of a 27-point performance against Oklahoma State in the quarterfinals, English scored 23 points against Texas despite suffering a deep thigh contusion. He fought through the injury and led Tigers to a 90-75 victory over Baylor in the championship game, scoring 19 points, 15 of which came from behind the arc. English was also responsible for the photo of the week.
Team of the Week: Western Kentucky Hilltoppers
The No.7-seed Hilltoppers went through a mid-season coaching change amidst a five-game losing streak. Despite this, they won four games in four days en route to the Sun Belt Tournament Championship. All four of their games were won by less than five points, and they defeated the No.2, No.3 and No.5 seeds in their tournament. Forward George Fant was the only freshman in the country to be named as a Tournament MVP. He lead the team in scoring over the four game stretch, averaging 14.9ppg.
Game of the Week: Marshall 105, Tulsa 100 3OT
Marshall’s DeAndre Kane scored a career-high 40 points as the Thundering Herd outlasted the Golden Hurricanes in the first triple-overtime game in Conference-USA tournament history. Neither team led by more than seven points, and the game featured 21 ties and 19 lead changes.
America East Conference: (MVP: Brian Voelkel, Vermont)
#2 Vermont 51, #1 Stony Brook 43
Atlantic Coast Conference: (Michael Snaer, Florida State)
#3 Florida State 85, #1 North Carolina 82
Atlantic Sun Conference: (Kerron Johnson, Belmont)
#1 Belmont 83, #6 Florida Gulf Coast 69
Atlantic-10 Conference: (Andrew Nicholson, St. Bonaventure’s)
#4 St. Bonaventure’s 67, #3 Xavier 56
Big East Conference: (Peyton Siva, Louisville)
#7 Louisville 50, #4 Cincinnati 44
Big Sky Conference: (Kareem Jamar, Montana)
#1 Montana 85, #2 Weber State 66
Big South Conference: (J.P. Primm, UNC-Asheville)
#1 UNC-Asheville 80, #7 VMI 64
Big-Ten Conference: (Draymond Green, Michigan State)
#1 Michigan State 68, #2 Ohio State 64
Big-XII Conference: (Kim English, Missouri)
#2 Missouri 90, #4 Baylor 75
Big West Conference : (Casper Ware, Long Beach State)
#1 Long Beach State 77, #3 Santa Barbara 64
Colonial Athletic Association: (Darius Theus, VCU)
#2 VCU 59, #1 Drexel 56
Conference-USA: (Joe Jackson, Memphis)
#1 Memphis 83, #5 Marshall 57
Horizon League: (Ray McCallum Jr., Detroit)
#3 Detroit 68, #1 Valparaiso 50
Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference: (Erik Etherly, Loyola)
#2 Loyola (Md.) 48, #4 Fairfield 44
Mid-American Conference: (D.J. Cooper, Ohio)
#3 Ohio 64, #1 Akron 63
Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference: (Kyle O’Quinn, Norfolk State)
#2 Norfolk State 73, #4 Bethune-Cookman 70
Missouri Valley Conference : (Doug McDermott, Creighton)
#2 Creighton 83, #4 Illinois State 79 OT
Mountain West Conference: (Drew Gordon, New Mexico)
#2 New Mexico 68, #1 San Diego State 59
Northeast Conference: (Julian Boyd, Long Island)
#1 Long Island 90, #3 Robert Morris 73
Ohio Valley Conference: (Donte Poole, Murrary State)
#1 Murray State 54, #2 Tennessee State 52
Pac-12 Conference: (Carlon Brown, Colorado)
#6 Colorado 53 #4 Arizona 51
Patriot League: (C.J. McCollum, Lehigh)
#2 Lehigh 82 #1 Bucknell 77
Southeastern Conference: (John Jenkins, Vanderbilt)
#3 Vanderbilt 71, #1 Kentucky 64
Southern Conference: (De’Mon Brooks, Davidson)
#1S Davidson 93, #3N Western Carolina 91 2OT
Southland Conference: (Mike James, Lamar)
#3 Lamar 70, #4 McNeese State 49
Southwestern Athletic Conference: (Cor-J Cox, Mississippi Valley State)
#1 Mississippi Valley State 71, #2 Texas Southern 69
Summit League: (Nate Wolters, South Dakota State)
#2 South Dakota State 52, #4 Western Illinois 50
Sun Belt Conference: (George Fant, Western Kentucky)
#7 Western Kentucky 74 #5 North Texas 70
Western Athletic Conference: (Wendell McKines, New Mexico State)
#2 New Mexico State 82, #5 Louisiana Tech 57
West Coast Conference: (Matthew Dellavedova, Saint Mary’s)
#1 Saint Mary’s 78, #2 Gonzaga 74 OT