The Patriot League is kind of like the “Ivy League Lite”, they are fairly prestigious universities but, no one is confusing Colgate for Columbia. Bucknell has won the regular season championship seven of the past eight years but, their late season swoon allowed Colgate to snipe their first since 1996. Home court has been less than automatic lately, with only four of the past eight #1 seeds getting it done and punching a ticket.
When and Where: March 5th-13th at the various higher-seeded teams’ campuses. Colgate locked down home-court throughout on the third tiebreaker and would host the title game if they reach it.
Defending Champ: Bucknell Bison
Who’s Good: Bucknell, Colgate
Who’s Sneaky: Lehigh, American
Who Stinks Out Loud: Even though they aren’t at the bottom of the standings, my numbers really think very lowly of Navy.
Coolest Team Nickname: Midshipman/Black Knights. When you’re having trouble picking one, you can always just default to respecting the troops. It’s a safe play.
Seeding and Rules: All ten teams are in, with the top six receiving a first round bye. All games are on the campus of the higher seed.
Multi-Bid League: Lord no. The winner of this is not only going to be a 16 seed but, may be in a play-in game facing another 16.
Breakdown: Colgate is hot like fire and is hosting throughout. It’s hard to fade a team that’s 12-1 at home and won’t leave town. Bucknell has been slipping and has some pretty questionable losses. They are still a very good team, but have a tougher draw in my opinion with a couple of squirrelly teams on deck. It's hard to like a long shot here but, my numbers have such a damn hard-on for one of them that it’s going to be unavoidable for me. Looking at the season as a whole, I’ve only placed two bets all year in the Patriot League (2-0 thank you very much), so I’m flying a little blind on this one but, still think I have a couple of decent looks.
My Pick(s): Colgate has ripped off 8 straight, will host, and absolutely deserves to be the favorite they are, I’ll bite. I have Lehigh rated fairly high and have to take a stab at 4/1. Holy Cross’ decent defensive efficiency coupled with my model’s love of their year-long stats is pretty much forcing my hand. I guess I'll be burning some money on a small dart on them at 60/1.
Colgate +110 (1x)
Lehigh +400 (0.5x)
Holy Cross +6000 (0.1x)