2019 CAA Tournament: Bracket Predictions

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Charleston Flag

In case you couldn’t tell from the Charleston-themed graphic that we spent an inordinate amount of time creating in Photoshop above, it’s almost time for the CAA Tournament! With just one week left, the league is still without a regular season champion. And with so many teams jockeying for position behind the top three, it’ll surely be an interesting finish to the year.

But we couldn’t help ourselves — we just couldn’t. With Charleston right around the corner, we got to thinking: just what could the bracket look like come March 9? So, with that question in mind, we set out to project each team’s finish — followed by a potential CAA Tournament bracket scenario. You could call it bracketology. See you in Charleston!

WMSB: CAA Regular Season
Predictions

1.

Hofstra

Games Remaining

  • @  Drexel
    WMSB Prediction: WIN
  • Delaware
    WMSB Prediction: WIN

Predicted finish: (25-6, 15-3 CAA)

Sporting a meager 1-2 record over its last three games, with losses coming against UNCW and JMU respectively, the CAA’s #1 team finally looks beatable. Luckily for the Pride, Hofstra draws two teams that it can almost certainly beat this week — that is, if the Pride comes ready to play. Look for Justin Wright-Foreman and the rest of the Long Island boys to get back on track this week, winning the CAA outright and locking up the #1 seed.

2.

Northeastern 

Games Remaining

  • Delaware
    WMSB Prediction: WIN
  • @  Drexel
    WMSB Prediction: WIN

Predicted finish: (20-10, 14-4 CAA)

Hot on Hofstra’s heels are last year’s runner-ups, and this year’s CAA Preseason #1 pick. Just one game behind Hofstra in the standings going into the final two games — if Hofstra stumbles, expect the Huskies to take home a share of the regular season CAA crown. And regardless of the standings, with the Pride’s recent struggles, it’s more than fair to say that Northeastern should go into this year’s CAA Tournament as the odds-on favorites to win it all.

3.

Charleston

Game Remaining

  • vs.  UNCW
    WMSB Prediction: WIN

Predicted finish: (23-8, 12-6 CAA)

Last year’s CAA Champions experienced a rough start in CAA play before ripping off 6 straight wins midway through the season, solidifying themselves in the top-3 of league standings. In fact, the Cougars have already clinched the #3 seed in this year’s CAA Tournament — with just one regular season contest remaining against lowly UNCW.

4.

William & Mary

Games Remaining

  • @  Towson
    WMSB Prediction: WIN
  • @  JMU
    WMSB Prediction: WIN

Predicted finish: (14-16, 10-8 CAA)

In addition to Northeastern, W&M might just be the hottest team in the CAA right now. The Tribe has rattled off wins in 5 out of its last 7 contests, including wins in 3 straight. To put it plainly, the Green and Gold, led by star Nathan Knight, is catching fire at just the right time. Moreover, the Tribe gets a “lucky” draw to end regular season play — as it does not have to play against any of the top-3 teams.

Even still, both Towson and JMU will be hard to defeat on the road. But even if W&M comes out of the final week just 1-1, the Tribe will have locked up either the #4 or the #5 seed — which happen to play each other on the second day of the CAA Tournament (that’s to say, there is no difference between the #4 or #5 seed). But what the Tribe absolutely cannot do is come out of this final week 0-2 — which, depending on tie breakers, may have W&M finish in the bottom-four of the league. #WeBelieve

5.

Delaware

Games Remaining

  • vs.  Northeastern
    WMSB Prediction: LOSS
  • vs.  Hofstra
    WMSB Prediction: LOSS

Predicted finish: (16-15, 8-10 CAA)

A team that was once the early-season darlings of the CAA has fallen from grace. The Blue Hens pulled off upsets against Northeastern and W&M while riding a 4-game winning streak to start conference play; since then, Delaware has cooled off significantly. Currently, the Hens are limping into the final week of regular season play, having won just 2 of its last 7 games. The road doesn’t get any easier this week, as they’ll take on the top two teams in the CAA.

6.

JMU

Games Remaining

  • vs.  Elon
    WMSB Prediction: WIN
  • vs.  W&M
    WMSB Prediction: LOSS

Predicted finish: (14-17, 7-11 CAA)

After losing 5 games in a row in the middle of conference play, the Dukes have rebounded in a significant way. Since the losing streak, JMU is 4-2 in its last 6 contests — having recently pulled off a big-time upset on the road at #1 Hofstra. The men in purple are fighting hard in what could be a make-or-break season for their head coach.

7.

Towson 

Games Remaining

  • vs.  W&M
    WMSB Prediction: LOSS
  • vs.  Elon
    WMSB Prediction: WIN

Predicted finish: (11-20, 7-11 CAA)

With one signature win on its resume, a 75-72 victory over Northeastern early in conference play, the Tigers are 3-5 heading into the final week of the CAA’s regular season. A team that can play defense and rebound well, Towson is clearly missing offensive pieces required to get the job done — as they’re currently ranked 10 of 10 in offensive scoring. Even still, this team is capable of pulling off an upset in this year’s CAA Tournament. We wouldn’t be surprised if they finished higher in the standings if they can pull off a win against W&M this week.

8.

Drexel

Games Remaining

  • vs.  Hofstra
    WMSB Prediction: LOSS
  • vs.  Northeastern
    WMSB Prediction: LOSS

Predicted finish: (13-18, 7-11 CAA)

Drexel’s shining moment this season came in its lone signature win at Charleston — a contest in which it won 79-78. Since then, the Dragons have been fairly mediocre; but with that being said, the Dragons have also shown that they are capable of pulling off an upset, specifically against the Cougars. In the second meeting of the two teams, Charleston just narrowly pulled out the victory, winning 86-84 in Philadelphia. If we were Charleston, we wouldn’t want to play Drexel in this year’s CAA Tournament.

9.

UNCW

Game Remaining

  • @  Charleston
    WMSB Prediction: LOSS

Predicted finish: (9-22, 5-13 CAA)

Oh how the mighty have fallen. Once a dominant force in the CAA under former Head Coach Kevin Keatts (now leading NC State), the Seahawks have lost their groove. Even with superstar Devontae Cacok, the team boasts just 1 win in its last 9 games (though that win impressively came against Hofstra). We just don’t see this team playing more than two games in this year’s CAA Tournament, with the greater likelihood being that we see them play in just one game before bowing out.

10.

Elon

Games Remaining

  •   JMU
    WMSB Prediction: LOSS
  • @  Towson
    WMSB Prediction: LOSS

Predicted finish: (9-22, 5-13 CAA)

Despite boasting a roster with talented senior Tyler Seibring, the Phoenix have struggled this year — failing to notch a single “notable” win on their belts; we don’t expect Elon to make much noise in this year’s CAA Tournament.

WMSB: CAA Tournament Bracket Prediction

If everything shakes out the way we described above, CAA Tournament seeding could look something like the below bracket. Note that Drexel, UNCW, Towson, and Elon would be playing on the first day — with Hofstra and Northeastern securing the top two seeds (waiting to play the winners of the first two contests). W&M would draw Delaware in a favorable matchup, while the Dukes would match up against the defending champion Charleston Cougars.

CAA Tournament Bracket

From W&M’s perspective, we have to look at this potential bracket and think to ourselves, “so you’re telling me there’s a chance.” On that side of the bracket, Delaware is a team that W&M dominated the last time out, and Hofstra has suddenly turned into a beatable #1-seed. The other side of the bracket is far less attractive, as it boasts both Northeastern and Charleston — as well as a dangerous JMU team and a suddenly-hot Towson team.

We’ll have to wait and see how the regular season plays out this week — but be on the lookout for our CAA Tournament Preview article next week! 

LET’S GO TRIBE 

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2 thoughts on “2019 CAA Tournament: Bracket Predictions

  1. Tonight’s results: all the visiting teams won.
    W&M 67, Towson 65
    Hofstra 80, Drexel 77
    Northeastern 75, Delaware 64
    Elon 73, JMU 58

    So the Tribe is in fourth at 9-8, UD in fifth at 8-9, Drexel in sixth at 7-10, and a three-way tie at 6-11 for seeding at the First Night Pillow Fight. Even better, the Tribe is locked in to the 4-5 game on the quarterfinals! (Which means we don’t have to play a rested Charleston team, itching for revenge, effectively at home in the quarters.)

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