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Southern Conference Notebook

March 1, 2004 Conference Notes No Comments

Southern Conference Notebook

by Paul Oren

It’s all about the seed…

Saturday marks the final day of regular season play in the Southern Conference, and it also represents the final chance for teams to get the best seed possible in the upcoming conference tournament. The 12-team tournament will start on March 3rd in Charleston and conclude with the ESPN-televised championship game at 2:00 Eastern on March 6th. The winner of the tournament will get an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.

Heading into the final day, six teams have clinched spots. ETSU (15-0) and Chattanooga (9-6) are 1 and 2 in the North side and both will receive first-round byes. The remaining four seeds in the North are open. In the South, Georgia Southern (11-4) has won all tiebreakers and has clinched first place and a bye. The final three spots are also solidified with Furman (8-7) at 4, Wofford (4-11) and The Citadel (1-14) close out spots 5 and 6.

The biggest seed up for grabs is the Number 2 seed in the South where the College of Charleston (10-5) and Davidson (10-5) will aim for the first-round bye. Charleston has a much tougher task, as they will host Conference Champion ETSU (ESPN2 – 2:00est). The Buccaneers have not lost a conference game all season and are coming off of an impressive victory over Chattanooga. The Cougars will be featured on ESPN2 for the second Saturday in as many weeks having played in the ESPN Bracket Buster last weekend. Not only does Charleston need to win against the best team in the league, they also need Davidson to lose at home against Furman. The Wildcats were 10-point winners against Furman earlier this season. If Davidson wins, they will secure the second seed and first-round bye because they hold the tiebreaker over Charleston (based on split against Georgia Southern).

In the North, the final four spots are open and one game will determine two of the seeds. Elon (6-9) hosts UNC Greensboro (7-8) with the winner getting the three seed and the loser getting the fourth. The Spartans beat Elon 67-53 in their first meeting of the season. The fifth and sixth seeds will be determined by the outcome of the Western Carolina (5-10) and Appalachian State (4-11) contest. The Mountaineers will hold the tiebreaker over Western Carolina if they win and are tied in the standings. If Elon were to lose and Western Carolina was to win, they would both be 6-10, but because the Catamounts lost both games to Chattanooga, Elon would win the tiebreaker.

Here is the final breakdown:

North Division
2) Chattanooga
3) UNC Greensboro/Elon Winner
4) UNC Greensboro/Elon Loser
5) Western Carolina/ASU Winner
6) Western Carolina/Loser

South Division
1) Georgia Southern
2) Charleston/Davidson
3) Charleston/Davidson
4) Furman

5) Wofford
6) The Citadel


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