Who will Georgia State play in its BracketBuster game? — updated

Just spoke with Ron Hunter about last night’s loss and what’s upcoming. I posted those thoughts on twitter @ajcgsu and will have more in a story that will appear Friday on ajc.com

A look at the upcoming BracketBuster game might be the perfect mouthwash for last night’s bitter loss at Drexel.

Georgia State’s hopes of appearing in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2001 will depend upon it winning the Colonial Athletic Association.

It can prepare itself for a possible postseason berth by winning its BracketBuster game, which will be played Feb. 18 at the Sports Arena.

What is a BracketBuster, you ask, and why does it have another capitalized B? No idea on the second, but here you go on the first: The Bracketbuster, contrived by ESPN, is designed to pit at-large hopefuls against each other on a nationally broadcast game. This year, the 142-team field will feature teams from 16 conferences: 12 from Colonial Athletic Association, Mid-American Conference and Southland; 11 from the Ohio Valley Conference and Big South; 10 from Horizon League, Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, Missouri Valley and Summit League; nine from America East, Big Sky and Big West; eight from the Western Athletic Association; four from the Southern Conference; three from the MEAC; and two from the West Coast Conference.

The Panthers’ opponent will be announced on Jan. 30. But that can’t stop us on speculating who it might be.

Well, we know who they won’t play… another team from the CAA.

The possible visiting teams could be luminaries such as College of Charleston or Wichita State.

A matchup with College of Charleston would be interesting because it would bring former Georgia Tech coach Bobby Cremins back to Atlanta.

The Cougars are currently rated No. 102 in the NCAA’s RPI (dated Jan. 23). The Panthers are No. 174, which may make this matchup unlikely because the RPI’s are so far apart.

Tennessee Tech, from the Ohio Valley Conference, is No. 184. They don’t have any wins over a well-known opponent that would add some pizazz to this game.

Stony Brook, from the America East Conference, is No. 172. The Seawolves don’t have any signature wins, either.

Other teams that might generate regional interest include (RPI in parenthesis): Campbell (No. 153), High Point (298), Liberty (323), Presbyterian (270), UNC-Asheville (130), Winthrop (266) or Wofford (176).

The Terriers of Wofford might be the most fun matchup. They  have beaten Wake Forest and Charleston this season, and would likely bring a few fans to Atlanta.

Of course, if the point is to provide a bump in RPI, while also giving some television exposure to the teams, I’m not sure Wofford helps the Panthers. That also brings up one of the issues I have with this setup: how does pitting two teams with similar low RPIs help either one? Conversely, why would a team with a higher RPI want to play a team with a lower RPI? Other than being on TV, how does it help?

Anyway, the floor is open: Who would you like to see Georgia State play, and why, and don’t forget to follow me on twitter @ajcgsu.

– Doug Roberson, AJC

14 comments Add your comment

GSU

January 26th, 2012
10:45 am

Who’s bracket are we busting exactly?

Hopefully we don’t get College of Charleston. They just lost to Georgia Southern and we’d never hear the end of it if we lost to them.

GStateBen

January 26th, 2012
10:47 am

Wofford makes a ton of sense. We’ve already played Libery so it’s very doubtful that we would be placed against them again.

Doug Roberson

January 26th, 2012
10:57 am

Thank you, GSU. That’s another issue I have with the name of this …. thing.

zgoldAtl

January 26th, 2012
12:28 pm

I lived in Charleston for several years. Beautiful place. Large alumni base in ATL, including friends of mine. For that biased reason, I’d like to see us play cofc.

itsmeagain

January 26th, 2012
1:33 pm

I have always wondered what the point in these bracketbuster games was. I mean, it’s cool to have an extra, unknown game thrown in at the end of the schedule, but what difference will it make to us for an at-large bid? None i’d imagine, whether we win or lose. I suppose that would be different if we were in the running for an at large bid, but we aren’t. Just another home game we can (hopefully) tack onto our win column.

GSU

January 26th, 2012
2:53 pm

The idea is to schedule these mid-major teams for bracketbuster games so that halfway during the season, if one of these teams is dominating but hasn’t played against great competition (Murray State, for example) that this could be the test to see if they are worthy of beating good competition. Which works for some teams, but not us.

[...] Who will Georgia State play in its BracketBuster game?Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog)Georgia State’s hopes of appearing in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2001 will depend upon it winning the Colonial Athletic Association. It can prepare itself for a possible postseason berth by winning its BracketBuster game, … [...]

Doug Roberson

January 26th, 2012
3:20 pm

Maybe it should be called BracketBooster, instead.

Sluggo

January 26th, 2012
3:26 pm

Not that it makes a difference with regards to this year, but Georgia State has previously played the College of Charleston in the BracketBuster game. Played them in Charleston during the 2005-06 season which brought the Cougars back to the Sports Arena the following year. Panthers lost both games and if I remember correctly the second meeting was coach Cremins first season at COC.

GSU is in Atlanta

January 27th, 2012
10:47 am

BRAcket BUSTER

Sluggo

January 27th, 2012
12:40 pm

Who is this Sluggo character at 3:26???

Sluggo

January 27th, 2012
1:57 pm

Who is this Sluggo character at 12:40???

Sluggo

January 27th, 2012
2:56 pm

GSU

January 28th, 2012
6:57 pm

Shocking…another loss.