Tuesday , Feb , 21 , 2006 C.Y. Ellis

Teams need to step it up before conference tourneys, NCAA brackets

Less than three weeks until the big day.

On March 12, the NCAA bracketology can begin.
As of now, Duke tops the polls (for both the men and women) and come conference tournament time, they’ll most likely claim the ACC title. Connecticut dropped to No. 2 in the AP Poll, but with their recent win against West Virginia and probable win against Notre Dame, they shouldn’t encounter too many problems.
The team that really needed a win this week came up short. West Virginia lost to Syracuse 60-58 last night, and not only extended their losing streak to three games, but probably hurt their seedings for the Big East and NCAA’s.
On Wednesday, N.C. State hosts UNC – a good Tobacco Road rivalry, plus a chance for the No. 11 Tar Heels to defeat the No. 10 Pack, once again. (Go Heels!)
A number of key games will be on Saturday. Illinois hosts Iowa for their last home game and if they can’t pull off a win, they might as well give up their hopes of winning the Big Ten. 
Texas hosts Kansas and Texas could definitely use a victory to bounce back from that ridiculous loss to Indiana. But Kansas … that’s going to be a tough one.
In the ACC, Boston College heads to N.C. State hoping to avenge their January loss to the Wolfpack. If they can do so, they have a chance to claim the No. 2 spot in the conference.