The clock will soon turn to March and much will be made of whether teams belong in the Big Dance the NIT or otherwise. Some of these early week games will have direct ramifications on tournament seeding or entrance while others become must wins to maintain momentum into the Madness.
Washington St @ Arizona St, 7pm, P12N: This is territory the Sun Devils haven't experienced in awhile. They're squarely on the bubble with a touch or work remaining to get into the tournament. In my expert opinion, losing to Washington State - the worst team in the conference - would not behoove the Sun Devils' chances of making it into the big dance. But that's just one man's opinion. Brock Motum.
Washington @ Arizona, 8pm, ESPN2: These two rivals square off again on the Worldwide Leader with a lot less hoopla than per usual. The Dawgs are slowly falling deep into the lower half of the conference and off the NIT bubble. Meanwhile, the Wildcats are looking to get things back on track after losing two of three. Usually I'd suggest returning home would help that but such hasn't always been the case in Tucson for the Wildcats this season.
Cal @ Oregon, 6pm, ESPNU: This game is spicy. Cal is the hottest team in the conference and Oregon is the top team in the conference. What else could you want? I suppose a 7pm start but I suppose worse things have happened. And while the Montgomery shove served as a motivator mid-game, it will be interesting to see if the fallout or attention stemming from the incident becomes a distraction.
Utah @ Colorado, 7pm, P12N: Last week, much was made of Colorado looking to exact revenge on Arizona following the monitor game. Well now the Buffs have a chance to avenge an actual loss as they host the Utes who beat Colorado at the beginning of February. As for post-season ramifications, Colorado remains a good computer team, they simply need to stockpile wins.
Stanford @ Oregon St, ESPNU: I noticed a friend of mine picked this as an upset alert and I can't say I disagree. Stanford was swept at home last week and is beginning to look the part of a crew not quite ready for primetime. The Beavers have the size to hang with the Cardinal and showed such the last time these two faced off on Super Bowl Sunday.