Eagles, Terriers Already Candidates for Big Dance Cinderellas

Published on 15-Dec-2014 by Alan Adamsson

Basketball - NCAA Mens    NCAA Basketball Daily Update

Share this article

Eagles, Terriers Already Candidates for Big Dance Cinderellas

When a college basketball bracket bulges with 68 teams, there's always the possibility of an outsider challenging the big brands.

Whether it's a short-run Mercer or Florida Gulf Coast -- or a George Mason or Butler charging to the Final Four -- challengers often spend the non-con portion of their schedule sizing up the task they expect to lie ahead.

As of now, count the Wofford Terriers and Eastern Washington Eagles as bona fidé threats to end someone's tourney early.

The Eagles have already stuck it to Indiana in Bloomington, snapping the Hoosiers' 43-game non-con home court winning streak.

And last night, they had the No 17 Washington Huskies on the ropes in Seattle until the final minutes. Excuse the Pac-12 emphasis; just read between the lines:

The 7-0 Upshaw is another story for another day, but the Fresno State transfer was the key reason Eastern didn't notch another big-brand into its belt. The Eagles have been to the Dance only once, but if their form holds and they win the usually tough Big Sky Conference, they could make some serious springtime noise.

A continent away, defending Southern Conference champion Wofford showed North Carolina State why it's expected to repeat:

Upon closer scrutiny, this shouldn't be a surprise. The total scope of Wofford's hoops culture is nothing short of impressive:

Wait until they start recruiting those monsters in the New York subway system.

Besides, there's a long tradition tying Cinderella to those critters. Maybe Wofford's really onto something here.