Bracketology Bubble Tracker: Michigan could use a win at Maryland

Michigan is still playing without star guard Caris LeVert and reports this week are that a decision may be coming soon to shut him down for the season. That is definitely not good news for Michigan, which needs some quality wins and has been struggling to find them without LeVert.

Bracketology

Jerry Palm’s projected bracket

The Wolverines have a bad record against better teams, although their three good wins are all against tournament teams. At the moment, they have six top 100 wins, but three of them are against Penn State (twice) and North Carolina State, who flitter in and out of the top 100.

One of those wins is at home against Maryland, and as if that wasn’t enough to get the Terrapins’ attention for this game, they are coming off one of the biggest upset losses of the season at Minnesota. If Maryland comes out of their funk Sunday, they could be taking out a lot of frustration on the Wolverines.

MICHIGAN : at Maryland (1 p.m. ET, CBS / CBSSports.com)

  • Status: On the fence
  • Record: 19-8, 9-5 Big Ten | RPI: 56 | Strength of schedule: 74

OTHER GAMES INVOLVING BUBBLE TEAMS SUNDAY:

GEORGE WASHINGTON : vs. La Salle (Noon ET, NBC Sports Network)

  • Status: On the fence
  • Record: 19-7, 8-5 Atlantic 10 | RPI: 50 | Strength of schedule: 90

LaSalle has proven dangerous at times this season, with wins over both Dayton and St. Bonaventure. However, those wins, like all of the Explorers’ wins, came at home. George Washington can’t afford to be LaSalle’s first road victim.

SETON HALL : at St. John’s (Noon ET, FS1)

  • Status: On the fence
  • Record: 18-7, 8-5 Big East | RPI: 42 | Strength of schedule: 65

The Pirates have a difficult stretch of their schedule coming up, but it may not matter much if they overlook St. John’s. After this are games with Providence, Xavier and Butler, but they have to take care of business first.

MONMOUTH : at St. Peter’s (2 p.m. ET)

  • Status: On the fence
  • Record: 22-6, 14-3 MAAC | RPI: 48 | Strength of schedule: 156

The Hawks got embarrassed at home by Iona, which was their fourth bad loss of the season. If they are going to be an at-large team, this is not a game they can afford to lose.

TULSA : at UCF (2 p.m. ET, CBS Sports Network)

  • Status: Work to do
  • Record: 17-9, 9-5 AAC | RPI: 40 | Strength of schedule: 33

Tulsa has been playing well of late, winning three out of four, including at SMU at home against Cincinnati. The loss was a two-point defeat at UConn. The Golden Hurricane are right around the cut line. Losing to UCF puts them on the wrong side of it.

WICHITA STATE : at Indiana State (4 p.m. ET, ESPNU

  • Status: Work to do
  • Record: 20-7, 13-2 | RPI: 49 | Strength of schedule: 92

The Shockers are about at the point where they will need to win the MVC tournament to get an at-large bid. Losses in the last couple of weeks to Illinois State and Northern Iowa give them almost no margin for error.

TEMPLE : at Houston (7 p.m. ET, ESPNNews)

  • Status: Work to do
  • Record: 16-9, 10-3 AAC | RPI: 61 | Strength of schedule: 61

This is the kind of team Temple has struggled with in conference play. The Owls have yet to lose to any of theother American conference contenders, but Houston won at Temple earlier. They are just 6-8 vs the RPI top 200. This is pretty much a must win for their at-large chances.

WISCONSIN : vs. Illinois (7:30 p.m. ET, Big Ten Network)

  • Status: On the fence
  • Record: 16-10, 8-5 Big Ten | RPI: 51 | Strength of schedule: 10

Wisconsin’s seven came winning streak came to a crashing halt at Michigan State on Thursday. The Badgers are squarely on the bubble because of too many home losses to teams like Illinois. Or worse. Wisconsin can’t afford to lose Sunday.

Michigan's loss to Ohio State on Tuesday was painful in many ways. (USATSI)
Michigan’s loss to Ohio State on Tuesday was painful in many ways. (USATSI)

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