Mercer at Seton Hall, 12:00 (SportSouth)
Chattanooga at Wisconsin, 1:00 (ESPNews) (Battle 4 Atlantis)
Samford at Pittbsurgh, 2:00 (Fox Sport South) (Maui on the Mainland)
So, What's the Story?
This is a rough day to be a SoCon team. That's three power conference teams, all on the road, for those keeping score at home.
The SoCon in recent years has gotten into trouble out of conference because they have been playing a lot of games they should win against non-D1s and a lot of games they should lose against power conference teams. This day falls square into the latter category.
The SoCon has got to win games against mid-major competition and not concern themselves too much with losing games to power conference teams if they want to move up in the RPI. The schedule is more balanced this year than in recent years, and that's a good thing.
This day, though, is not. Any win by a SoCon team here would be huge and a major boost to the conference on the whole. Samford and Mercer are both clearly rebuilding, even if Mercer has the talent to contend for a SoCon title. As for Chattanooga, they are not so much rebuilding, but when you play a reigning Final Four team that is ranked in the Top Five in the preseason, it doesn't matter when you play them- it's a huge challenge.
Game of the Day- Mercer at Seton Hall
McDonald's All American Isaiah Whitehead is coming in for the Pirates and will be playing just his second game for Seton Hall. That kind of talent doesn't come along every day. Whitehead headlines a six player freshman class that
The whole backcourt could be vastly improved. In fact, many analysts consider them the best set of guards in the entire Big East. The frontcourt is not particularly good though. That plays right into Mercer's hands. The Bears need to find a way to neutralize the Pirates backcourt while winning the match-up in the frontcourt to keep the game close down to the wire. With all the new players for Seton Hall, they might not have gelled yet, giving Mercer a shot to come up with a major upset road win.
Ike Nwamu scored 22 points against Piedmont and appears to have embraced his role as the new star of the team for the Bears. Can Mercer win behind Nwamu? Can he have a huge game on a national stage>