Powered by the new Crashing the Dance team sheets (and HBO's new documentary on the Duke-Carolina rivalry), we look this week at the movers and shakers around the bubble. With less than three weeks left until Selection Sunday, the bubble is, as it usually is, fluid. Let's take a look at some of the teams still sitting uncomfortably on one side or the other.
All numbers through games of Sunday, February 22.
Oklahoma State (out last week; #11 seed this week)
The Cowboys sneak in with a couple of decent wins, mostly taking advantage of this year's weak bubble. Despite not having a signature win (their best was in Florida over RPI #26 Siena), they've built a good but not great profile by not losing any bad games and not playing too many bad teams. The have lost nine games, but the average RPI rank of those opponents is 24. Unfortunately, the average opponent rank in their victories is 147, a little high. They could really use a win over Texas or Oklahoma (both would really help) and no more regular season losses, and I'm not convinced they're quite in yet.
Maryland (way out last week; second team out this week)
Another guard torches the Tar Heel defense as Greivis Vasquez put up a triple-double to lead the Terps over Carolina in College Park. Maryland has come a long way in a seemingly short time to put themselves on the threshold of a bid. If they show up again Wednesday against Duke, they may put themselves solidly in. Pomeroy doesn't think they will, pegging the Terps to finish at 7-9 in the ACC, which probably won't be good enough.
Tennessee (#8 seed last week; #10 this week)
LSU is the only team the CTD oracle has in the "Looking good" section of at-large selections this week, and even that may be generous given their questionable non-conference schedule. The Vols fall hard on the road twice this week and drop to the #10 seed line despite their #24 RPI rank. They have several chances to impress the committee over the next two weeks with road games at fellow bubble-dwellers Florida and South Carolina. Wins in both could have Rocky Top looking good.
Southern Cal (#10 seed last week; out this week)
A win over Washington State was not enough to keep the Men of Troy in the field this week. Perhaps Tim Floyd can ask President Obama to help with that too. Only 11 of the Trojans 26 games have come against RPI Top 100 opponents (though Washington State fluctuates in and out depending on the day), and a recent brutal road stretch has Floyd looking for more federal help. Their two toughest remaining opponents (Cal and Stanford) are away from home (where the best team they've beaten is RPI #102 Washington State), so they have some work to do.