Wednesday, February 14, 2007

The Xavier Corollary

To be fair, this "theory" could just as easily be named after West Virginia from two years ago or Bradley from last year.

But if you remember the seasons that the aforementioned two teams had, you know what I am talking about. So, The Xavier Corollary is a team that was once left for dead as far as tournament hopes go, but catches fire in the last month or so to end up not only making the dance, but makes a Sweet 16 run.

The best example, and the name sake of this self-created term comes from a 2004 Xavier team that was 10-9 going into their annual Crosstown Shootout against Cincinnati on February 3. At that point, the Musketeers were on the outside of the NIT bubble with a 2-5 A10 record. Eighteen games later, they were thisclose to beating Duke in the Elite Eight and going to the Final Four.

Last year's Sweet 16 Bradley club was 13-9 and 7-7 in the MVC after a February 8 loss against Indiana State. Two years ago, West Virginia was 12-7 and 2-6 in the Big East after February 1 and made it to the Elite Eight and lost in overtime to Louisville.

Prime candidates to keep the yearly Xavier Corollary going this season include San Diego State, Ole Miss, Old Dominion and DePaul. Or maybe none of those teams. You just never know in college basketball.

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