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Mid-Major Top 25

It's BracketBusters weekend, which means this list is even more useless today than it has been every other Friday.

And on that note...

25. Portland State (NR) (18-8, 11-2 Big Sky)

Winners of nine straight, the Vikings own a three-game lead over Northern Arizona in the Big Sky.

24. UMBC (NR) (19-7, 11-2 America East)

The retrievers are one win or a Hartford loss away from clinching an outright regular season title

23. Wagner (NR) (20-6, 13-2 Northeast)

Having four of its last five games go into overtime, and winning all four of those games is one of the more impressive accomplishments in college basketball this season.

22. Illinois State (14) (19-8, 11-5 Missouri Valley)

The Redbirds' regular season finale at Southern Illinois will likely decide who nabs the second seed in the MVC tourney.

21. Lamar (NR) (16-8, 10-1 Southland)

The teams in the West division have garnered more attention, but it's the Cardinals who actually own the top record in the Southland.

20. George Mason (12) (19-8, 11-5 Colonial Athletic Association)

Last Saturday's home loss to Wilmington all but guaranteed that the CAA will be getting just one team into the dance.

19. Belmont (NR) (19-8, 11-2 Atlantic Sun)

In addition to an 11-2 league record, the Bruins own road victories over Cincinnati and Alabama.

18. Cal State Fullerton (NR) (17-7, 10-3 Big West)

The Titans have a Bracket Buster date with Big Sky-leading Portland State Saturday night.

17. Robert Morris (22) (22-6, 13-2 Northeast)

The Colonials host Mike Deane and Wagner on Saturday in a game that will likely decide who snags the regular season title in the Northeast.

16. IUPUI (13) (21-6, 12-3 Summit League)

Oooey-pooie became the first team in the Summit League to knock off Oral Roberts with a 69-66 win last Saturday, but they followed up that performance with an 84-69 loss at Oakland.

15. Akron (20) (19-7, 9-4 Mid-American)

The Zips recovered from an embarrassing home loss to Northern Illinois by winning at Bowling Green and at Miami of Ohio. They'll host VCU tomorrow in one of the more intriguing Bracket Buster matchups.

14. Cornell (18) (16-5, 8-0 Ivy League)

A win over Brown on Saturday will all but lock up the Big Red's first NCAA Tournament bid in 20 years.

13. Wright State (16) (20-6, 12-4 Horizon League)

The Raiders' 11-game win streak will be put to the test on Sunday at Illinois State.

12. Oral Roberts (10) (20-6, 15-1 Summit League)

IUPUI dealt the Golden Eagles their first blemish in conference play, but ORU bounced right back with consecutive wins to clinch at least a share of the regular season title.

11. Cal State Northridge (15) (18-6, 10-2 Big West)

Northridge, which has five players averaging double figures, has a crucial tilt at Fullerton on Feb. 28.

10. Virginia Commonwealth (5) (20-6, 13-3 Colonial Athletic Association)

A one-point home loss to Old Dominion last Saturday may have turned the CAA Tournament into a must-win situation as far as the Rams' NCAA Tournament hopes go.

9. Western Kentucky (6) (21-6, 13-2 Sun Belt)

If the Hilltoppers beat South Alabama this season it's going to have to be in Mobile, on national television, and with a conference championship on the line.

8. Stephen F. Austin (11) (22-3, 10-2 Southland)

The Lumberjacks pronounced their dominance in the West Division of the Southland with a 79-57 win over Sam Houston State on Thursday night.

7. Kent State (8) (22-5, 11-2 Mid-American)

A win at Saint Mary's followed by three MAC victories to close the regular season, and the Golden Flashes will turn into a team everyone on the bubble will be rooting for come the second week of March.

6. South Alabama (9) (22-5, 14-2 Sun Belt)

Currently 27th in the RPI, South Alabama looks good for an at-large bid so long as it takes care of business in its three remaining regular season games.  

5. Davidson (7) (20-6, 18-0 Southern)

The Wildcats have continued to roll through the SoCon, but they're still just one loss in March away from being at the center of a highly interesting debate. Does a team that swept its conference's regular season, played an extremely difficult non-con schedule, but went just 2-6 in those games, deserve an at-large bid?

4. Gonzaga (4) (21-6, 10-1 West Coast)

The 'Zags have won their last four games by an average of 25 points.

3. Drake (2) (23-3, 14-2 Missouri Valley)

I'm tellin' ya, 8/9 death game.

2. Saint Mary's (3) (23-3, 10-1 West Coast)

A win over Kent State on Sunday would be nice, but it will do nothing to silence critics who say the Gaels can't beat anyone of merit on the road.

1. Butler (1) (25-2, 14-2 Horizon League)

The Bulldogs' ceiling is likely a four seed.


Fell Out: North Carolina Asheville (17), Rider (19), Sam Houston State (21), Ohio (23), Morgan State (24), Siena (25)