March Madness is here! Today, a few of our writers will be giving their thoughts on the Colonial Conference Tournament.
#8 Drexel vs. #9 UNC-Wilmington
#7 Elon vs. #10 James Madison
#1 Hofstra vs. #8 Drexel/#9 UNC-Wilmington
#4 Charleston vs. #5 Delaware
#2 William & Mary vs. #7 Elon/#10 James Madison
#3 Towson vs. #6 Northeastern
Who will win the Colonial Conference Tournament?
Aram: #2 William & Mary (21-10, 13-5 in the Colonial)
William & Mary is entering into the Colonial Conference Tournament on a 5 game winning streak. Nathan Knight is such a skilled big and with the help of Van Vliet and Loewe, I can see them winning it and moving onto the NCAA Tournament.
Pat: #2 William & Mary (21-10, 13-5 in the Colonial)
The CAA will be one of the most fun conference tournaments to watch as it was a wild conference all season with a lot of upsets and changes at the top throughout. Hofstra grabbed the top seed, but I’m going with the #2 seed William & Mary tribe to win the title. With star center Nathan Knight leading the way, I trust the Tribe more than any other team in one of the hardest conferences to predict.
TJ: #4 Charleston (17-13, 11-7 in the Colonial)
With five teams all within three games of each other the Colonial tournament proves to be an exciting one. There are a handful of teams you could pick, but I am going with the College of Charleston. With wins against all of the top teams in the conference and one of the most underrated lead guards in the country, the Cougars have an exciting opportunity on their hands. Grant Riller has averaged 21 PPG while shooting 50% from the field and hoists one of the quickest first steps of any guard prospect. If the Cougars want to advance, it’s on his shoulders.
Which team is a Dark Horse Candidate to take home the title?
Aram: #4 Charleston (17-13, 11-7 in the Colonial)
I know TJ just mentioned Charleston as his champion, but I still think they are a considerable underdog. But, I just can’t bet against Grant Riller. I believe they’ll make the title off of his performances.
Pat: #6 Northeastern (15-15, 9-9 in the Colonial)
The Huskies have had an up and down year, but have a ton of shooters and are a dangerous team when hot. Guard Jordan Roland has been a stud all year averaging just under 23 points per game on impressive shooting splits of 89/49/40. The Huskies will first face #3 Towson, who they just lost a close game to last Saturday, but if they make proper adjustments and get past the Tigers this time around, the tournament is wide open enough for them to win.
TJ: #5 Delaware (21-10, 11-7 in the Colonial)
Delaware is the sleeper even though they are still in the top five. Nate Darling has averaged over 20 points a game and the Blue Hens have four players who all average in double figures. Look for Dylan Painter to be an X-factor for them in the tourney. The Villanova transfer has only been eligible since the second semester, but his 6-10 size has been an impact for Delaware immediately.
Who is one player that NBA teams should keep an eye on?
Aram: Desure Buie, Senior G – Hofstra
None of us chose Hofstra to win the tournament despite being the first seed. Make no mistake, they are a feared team in this tournament led by Senior guard Desure Buie. Buie is a fantastic scorer and can create his own shot with ease. He’s as quick as anyone in this conference and will get plenty of looks from teams overseas.
Pat: Nathan Knight, Senior F – William & Mary
Knight tested the draft waters last spring but came back for his senior season, and it looks like that decision is going to pay off. He has been dominant all year for the Tribe, and he’s currently second in the nation in double doubles and was just named a Kareem Award finalist for the nation’s top centers. Knight is a special talent that you will likely see on an NBA roster next year.
TJ: Grant Riller, Senior G – College of Charleston
Grant Riller is a second round guy who is a senior, one of the best scorers in the colonial conference, and has upped his 3PT% and FT% from last year. He is one of the best attackers in the country. He’s been getting buckets for years and if you haven’t seen him yet you need to because he may eventually be the lead backup on your NBA team in the future.