NCAA Tournament March Madness

#319 E Illinois

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Projection: need to automatically qualify

Eastern Illinois' chances of making noise in the NCAA tournament hinge on them winning their conference tournament for an automatic bid. The hard truth here is that their performance against top-tier competition hasn't been particularly inspiring; with heavy losses against powerhouses like Illinois and Kansas and an inability to consistently best the mid-range teams in their conference, such as Morehead State and Tennessee Martin, itโ€™s clear they struggle to compete against higher-caliber opponents. They've shown tenacity in a close call against Kansas and held their own against a tough Iowa State defense, but these moments are scarce. Simply put, without sustaining that level of competitiveness and showing that they can turn close games into wins against stronger teams, their overall body of work isn't persuasive enough for an at-large bid to the big dance.

Date Opponent Ranking Outcome
11/15@Illinois St179L69-61
11/18(N)Coppin St354W48-46
11/19@Miami OH259L76-64
12/10Cent Arkansas336L73-70
12/21@Iowa St9L80-48
1/4@TN Martin185W79-72
1/6@Ark Little Rock209W90-88
1/11Morehead St103L78-52
1/13W Illinois243L63-60
1/25Tennessee Tech323W68-59
1/27Tennessee St282L64-60
2/1TN Martin185L76-59
2/3Ark Little Rock209L71-47
2/8@Southern Indiana340W81-71
2/10@Morehead St103L69-57
2/15SE Missouri St349W75-57
2/22@Tennessee St282L78-73
2/24@Tennessee Tech323L75-67
2/29@W Illinois243L70-66