Dec 18, 2013, 3:30 PM EDT
GAME OF THE DAY: Texas vs. No. 14 North Carolina, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
The Tar Heels have been one of the more puzzling teams in college basketball this season, but in the last three games they’ve knocked off top-ranked Michigan State in East Lansing and topped No. 11 Kentucky. North Carolina is once again without the services of P.J. Hairston but Leslie McDonald has been cleared. UNC will look to add another quality win over a 9-1 Texas team.
The Longhorns are much better than most of us (self included) thought they’d be. We’ll see just how good Texas is in the next two games as they take on Michigan State on Saturday following Wednesday’s showdown.
WHO’S GETTING UPSET? No. 22 UMass vs. Ohio, 7 p.m.
The MAC is a good conference, and Ohio figures to be a contender this season. The Bobcats are welcoming the undefeated Minutemen, less than a week before the holidays. Let’s see if Ohio can catch UMass on an off night in front of the home crowd.
MID-MAJOR GAME OF THE DAY: Winthrop vs. North Carolina Central, 7 p.m.
The Eagles and the, uh, Eagles both enter the game with identical 6-2 records. Winthrop is one of the contenders in the Big South and North Carolina Central will look to take the MEAC from favorite Norfolk State.
FIVE THINGS TO KNOW
1) No. 3 Ohio State welcomes a high-scoring Delaware back court into Columbus on Wednesday night. The Buckeyes are looking to remain unbeaten while the Blue Hens are trying to avoid dropping three straight after losing to Notre Dame and North Dakota State.
2) Indiana State and Saint Louis should be another good game on Wednesday night. The Sycamores heads into a hostile environment, but remember, they already took down Notre Dame in South Bend earlier this season.
3) Stanford is looking to end an NCAA tournament drought in Johnny Dawkins’ sixth season. A win on the road against No. 10 UConn will look really good come March.
4) The Rebels have previously been upset at home this season by UC Santa Barbara. UNLV should be on alert again on Wednesday, Radford is a solid team with a talented perimeter attack led by Javonte Green and R.J. Price.
5) Tennessee and LSU, two teams looking be that third team in the SEC, are both in action. The Vols, looking to bounce back after a loss to Wichita State, host N.C. State while the Tigers take on Texas Tech.
REST OF THE TOP 25:
- Northwestern State vs. No. 12 Baylor, 9:30 p.m.
- Southern Utah vs. No. 24 San Diego State, 10 p.m.
- Texas Southern vs. Temple, 7 p.m. (ESPN3)
- Charleston vs. Old Dominion, 7 p.m.
- N.C. State vs. Tennessee, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
- Drexel vs. St. Joseph’s, 7 p.m.
- Detroit vs. Akron, 7 p.m.
- Southern Miss vs. Western Kentucky, 8 p.m. (ESPN3)
- San Francisco vs. St. John’s, 8 p.m. (Fox Sports 1)
- Western Michigan vs. Drake, 8:05 p.m.
- LSU vs. Texas Tech, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
- Towson vs. Oregon State, 10 p.m. (Pac-12 Network)
- Joel Embiid out for Big 12 tournament, ‘longshot’ for NCAA tournament first weekend 0
- 2014 Big 12 Tournament Preview: This is going to be good 1
- 2014 Big East Tournament Preview: Can Villanova finally beat Creighton? 0
- College Basketball Talk’s Latest Top 25 4
- Bracketology: Florida in driver’s seat for overall No. 1 seed 5
- NBCSports.com’s 2014 College Basketball All-Americans 8
- Bubble Banter: Nebraska’s marquee win, St. Joseph’s problematic loss 0
- Wichita State will head into the NCAA tournament 34-0 as a No. 1 seed (12)
- No. 7 Syracuse falls to Georgia Tech in a shocking home loss (9)
- NBCSports.com’s 2014 College Basketball All-Americans (8)
- Assigned Reading: Dean Smith’s health continues to deteriorate (6)
- No. 1 Florida’s undefeated SEC season not just a by-product of their league (6)