There were times on Sunday that it appeared that MAAC Player of the Year Billy Baron was fighting to keep Canisius afloat and his NCAA tournament hopes alive against Iona, and it appeared that the senior would not let them go away. Continue reading “An Ode to Canisius’ Billy Baron”
Regular season MAAC play has come to its inevitable conclusion. The final day offered a few surprises as Rider beat Fairfield at home, Loyola (MD) pulled out a squeaker over Manhattan and Marist went off on Niagara. All of those results have been included in this final edition of the tempo-free MAAC and will also impact the projected tournament results that I will unveil on Tuesday afternoon. It’s been quite the ride. For some more reading on the MAAC, checkout out this Q&A Siena Saints Blog did with MAAC commissioner Rich Ensor.
There’s one team in the MAAC that has been fairly consistent this season. It’s not Iona. It’s not Manhattan. It’s Loyola (MD). The Greyhounds have played at about the same level all season as they’ve compiled a 10-2 record to tie the Gaels atop the conference standings. Jimmy Patsos has his team limiting the ups and down and thus limiting the ways they can lose games. Their variance is half of anyone else in the league. (Just don’t ask how the Niagara game happened.)
There’s a very clear cut No. 1 team in the MAAC this season. Iona has taken all comers and delivered convincing win after convincing win. It’s good enough that the Gaels are currently projected as a 12 seed in ESPN’s latest bracketology (playing Vanderbilt!). The big question now is if any team is going to challenge the Gaels. We’ll find out this week as more of the top teams have games against each other starting on Thursday with Iona vs. Manhattan and Fairfield vs. Loyola (Md.). Let’s look at what the per possessions stats tell us about those four teams.
MAAC play started last night with St. Peter’s defeated Siena and Loyola (Md.) taking down Marist. It continues tonight with three games, including Manhattan at Rider and Iona at Canisius. Here are some things to watch for tonight.