The Washington Times - March 8, 2011, 09:10AM

There will be no questions – not that there really should have been in the first place – about the NCAA-worthiness of Old Dominion and Gonzaga after their respective conference tournament victories Monday night.

And as for the teams those schools defeated? It’s going to be an uneasy week for them.

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Saint Mary’s and Virginia Commonwealth will be watching the ACC, Big Ten and Big 12 tournaments closely. They’ll pull for Butler to knock off Wisconsin-Milwaukee and create an extra at-large berth. They’ll root against anyone in the WAC other than Utah State, which at 27-3 will probably make it into the field (if needed) as an at-large despite playing only four top-100 games.

The quick, immediate take is VCU might just have a better profile than Saint Mary’s, At this point, the Gaels don’t look quite as good as Virginia Tech, but are probably better than the rest of the riff-raff on the wrong side of the cut line.

Both teams still have a chance, but both could easily turn into NIT fodder. It’ll be another five days before either can know for sure.

EAST REGION

Cleveland

(1) BIG TEN/Ohio State vs. (16) SWAC/Texas Southern-SOUTHLAND/McNeese State
(8) Tennessee vs. (9) Washington

Tucson, Ariz.

(4) St. John’s vs. (13) ATLANTIC SUN/Belmont
(5) Kansas State vs. (12) SUMMIT/Oakland

Charlotte, N.C.

(3) ACC/North Carolina vs. (14) NORTHEAST/Long Island
(6) Connecticut vs. (11) Butler

Tucson, Ariz.

(2) San Diego State vs. (15) METRO ATLANTIC/Saint Peter’s
(7) Cincinnati vs. (10) WESTERN ATHLETIC/Utah State

SOUTHWEST REGION

Tulsa, Okla.

(1) BIG 12/Kansas vs. (16) SUN BELT/North Texas-MEAC/Bethune-Cookman
(8) COLONIAL/Old Dominion vs. (9) Illinois

Washington

(4) Louisville vs. (13) IVY/Harvard
(5) Vanderbilt vs. (12) Clemson/Virginia Commonwealth

Washington

(3) Syracuse vs. (14) MID-AMERICAN/Kent State
(6) Temple vs. (11) WEST COAST/Gonzaga

Chicago

(2) Purdue vs. (15) BIG WEST/Long Beach
(7) UCLA vs. (10) Georgia

SOUTHEAST BRACKET

Cleveland

(1) BIG EAST/Pittsburgh vs. (16) BIG SOUTH/UNC Asheville
(8) Missouri vs. (9) Florida State

Denver

(4) Wisconsin vs. (13) OHIO VALLEY/Morehead State
(5) ATLANTIC 10/Xavier vs. (12) UAB

Tampa, Fla.

(3) SEC/Florida vs. (14) HORIZON/Wisconsin-Milwaukee
(6) West Virginia vs. (11) Boston College

Denver

(2) MOUNTAIN WEST/Brigham Young vs. (15) SOUTHERN/Wofford
(7) Texas A&M vs. (10) Marquette

WEST REGION

Chicago

(1) Notre Dame vs. (16) AMERICA EAST/Boston University
(8) UNLV vs. (9) George Mason

Tampa, Fla.

(4) Kentucky vs. (13) PATRIOT/Bucknell
(5) PAC-10/Arizona vs. (12) Michigan State/Virginia Tech

Tulsa, Okla.

(3) Texas vs. (14) MISSOURI VALLEY/Indiana State
(6) Georgetown vs. (11) Michigan

Charlotte, N.C.

(2) Duke vs. (15) BIG SKY/Northern Colorado
(7) Villanova vs. (10) Richmond

Last four in: Virginia Commonwealth, Virginia Tech Michigan State, Clemson
Last four out: Saint Mary’s, Colorado, Colorado State, Cleveland State
Next four out: Missouri State, Memphis, Penn State, Alabama

Moving in: North Texas, Saint Peter’s, Virginia Tech, Wofford
Moving out: 
College of Charleston, Iona, Middle Tennessee, Saint Mary’s

Conference call: Big East (11), Big Ten (6), ACC (6), Big 12 (5), SEC (5), Colonial (3), Atlantic 10 (3), Mountain West (3), Pac-10 (3), Horizon (2)

Patrick Stevens