Feb. 16—More changes were made to the Wichita State men's basketball schedule on Monday, the American Athletic Conference announced.
Most importantly for a WSU (12-4, NET of 78) team trying to pile up solid wins to build an NCAA Tournament at-large resume, it will get two cracks at SMU (11-4, NET of 56) in the span of four days.
The Shockers will host SMU at Koch Arena on Thursday, Feb. 25 for a 6 p.m. game broadcast on either ESPN or ESPN2, then travel to Dallas to play the Mustangs at Moody Coliseum on Sunday, Feb. 28 for a 7 p.m. game broadcast on ESPNU. In terms of March Madness watch, WSU's road game at SMU will qualify as a Quadrant 1 game with the home game counting as a Quadrant 2.
Other changes made to WSU's schedule: WSU's return trip to ECU (8-8, NET of 148) has been canceled. And then on Tuesday it was announced the Shockers' home game against East Carolina, set for an 11 a.m. tipoff Sunday, was postponed because of a COVID-19 pause at ECU.
After the reshuffling, WSU has four games remaining to be rescheduled — home dates against Memphis, South Florida and ECU, and a road trip to Cincinnati.
The home game against Memphis (12-6, NET of 62) and away game at Cincinnati (7-7, NET of 119) would be most valuable for WSU to play — and win — to build an at-large case because both would likely count as Quadrant 2 wins.
But trying to fit in four more games is essentially impossible with just three weeks left in the regular season and WSU already on basically a once-every-three-days pace. Even fitting in one or two of the games will take some creativity on the American's part.
According to a source who works for the AAC, the conference will do everything it can to make sure WSU has the best opportunity possible — i.e. play the most beneficial games to an at-large berth.
When asked if the conference would consider canceling less important games for WSU — like road trips to Tulane on March 3 and to Temple on March 6 — to make sure more important games — like the Memphis game or Cincinnati road trip — get played, the official said he wasn't sure but noted that it would be an unprecedented move.
Remaining WSU men's basketball schedule
Thursday, Feb. 18: vs. Houston, 6 p.m. (ESPN2)
Thursday, Feb. 25: vs. SMU, 6 p.m. (ESPN or ESPN2)
Sunday, Feb. 28: at SMU, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
Wednesday, March 3: at Tulane, 5 p.m. (ESPN+)
Sunday, March 6: at Temple, TBA (ESPN2)
Thursday, March 11-Sunday March 14: AAC Tournament
Games to be rescheduled: vs. Memphis, vs. South Florida, vs. ECU, at Cincinnati
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