ATLANTA – As the Under Armour MCLA Division I Weekly Coaches Poll is currently configured, three of the Top 6 teams are guaranteed to take a loss in the next two weeks, meaning the race for the No. 2 ranking – and perhaps the No. 2 seed – is still in play.
How will it shake out?
If we assume that California (12-0) will go the distance as the undefeated No. 1 – certainly no slam dunk – that means that the remaining five teams in the Top 6 are from just two conferences.
As such, there will be blood in the final poll.
The SELC, which has to be considered the deepest conference in the MCLA at this point, boasts three teams in the Sexy Six.
No. 2 Georgia Tech (14-0), No. 3 Liberty (13-0) and No. 6 South Carolina (12-2) are all going to enter the SELC tourney, and two of them will take losses. If the Yellow Jackets or Flames take the crown, conventional wisdom says they will squat at No. 2.
If the Gamecocks run the table, however, then it opens the door for the other conference – the SLC – to grab the coveted second chair.
No. 4 Arizona State (11-1) and No. 5 Chapman (13-2) are on a collision course in the SLC tournament as the top seeds on opposing sides of the bracket. One will almost certainly be ranked no lower than third while the other will be set adrift in the seeding no-man’s land of Nos. 6-8.
If you ever needed a reason to keep a close eye on how the conference tournaments shake out, consider this your invitation.
Georgia (7-5) exited the poll this week to make way for No. 24 Northeastern (6-6)
Under Armour MCLA Division I Coaches Poll – Week 9
Others receiving votes: Texas A&M (22), Georgia (14), Texas (13), Colorado State (12), Oregon (6), Indiana (3), Southern Methodist (1).