GAME OF THE NIGHT: Minnesota at No. 21 Wisconsin, 9:00 p.m.
Richard Pitino will take his Gophers into Madison tonight to take on No. 21 Wisconsin in a game that Minnesota really needs to help solidify their at-large profile. The Gophers were in a great position after wins over Ohio State and Wisconsin last month, but losing three straight to Northwestern, Purdue and Nebraska has taken a bit of the luster off of their fast start to league play. Wisconsin is coming off of a win over Michigan State on Sunday.
THE OTHER GAME OF THE NIGHT: Colorado at UCLA, 9:00 p.m.
I think it’s safe to say that there is no second-best team in the Pac-12 right now, just a hodge-podge of also-rans stuck behind Arizona in the standings. Two of those teams are Colorado and UCLA, who will both enter Thursday night’s showdown in good position to earn an at-large bid, but in a questionable enough spot that a losing streak down the stretch of the season could be a disaster. The shame here is that seeing Kyle Anderson go head-to-head with Spencer Dinwiddie would have been must-see TV.
WHO’S GETTING UPSET?: No. 18 Creighton at Butler, 7:00 p.m.
Doug McDermott will be taking his talents to Hinkle Fieldhouse tonight, where the Bulldogs have had much less success in their transition to the Big East that Dougie McBuckets has had. But this is Butler, and this is Hinkle, and whether or not Brad Stevens is roaming the sidelines, magic tends to happen there.
FIVE THINGS TO WATCH FOR:
1) No. 13 Louisville’s visit to Temple has been postponed, as has No. 23 SMU’s trip to Rutgers. Both games will be played tomorrow. This afternoon, games that were postponed last night will be played: Boston College at Georgia Teach and Vanderbilt at South Carolina.
2) Northwestern has played the role of plucky spoiler to perfection this season. Can they pick off a depleted No. 9 Michigan State team tonight?
3) Arkansas will make the trip to Missouri for the biggest bubble game of the night.
4) St. John’s will be paying a visit to Seton Hall tonight assuming that the game is still going to be played.
5) Gonzaga has put themselves in a position where they cannot afford to lose anymore games if they want to dance. Without a marquee win, their profile is awful empty when you look at it.