NCAA Basketball

Bubble Watch: 10 Annual Contenders Who Won’t Make the Tournament

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Bubble Watch: 10 Annual Contenders Who Won’t Make the Tourney

bubble teams
Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

This is the time of year when many teams are trying to boost their resume so they can make it into the NCAA tournament. This is the time of year that is known as bubble season. Instead of looking at bubble teams and what they will have to do to make the Big Dance, let’s focus on 10 annual contenders who won’t make the tournament.

Some of these teams still have a chance to make the tourney. That is the case with basically every single team in college hoops. That whole winning your conference tournament and then earning an automatic bid is a beautiful thing.

However, I doubt that will be the case with any of these teams. That doesn’t mean that some of them won’t make it interesting. Some of these teams are actually on the bubble. So what if those bubbles are about to burst. Being on the bubble is being on the bubble.

A few of the teams were actually ranked to start the season, so I am sure you can imagine how disappointed some of the fan bases will be when their team’s name is not called on Selection Sunday. Speaking of Selection Sunday, it is much closer than some people may think.

The announcement of the 68-team field will go down on March 16.

So while teams like Syracuse, Florida, Arizona and others could be looking at No. 1 seeds, the 10 teams on this list won’t even hear their name being called.

Read on to find out the 10 annual contenders who won’t make the 2014 NCAA tournament.

Trevor Lowry is a Senior Writer and Copy Editor at If you’re a tweeter feel free to follow him @TheTrevorLowry or add him to your network on Google.

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Notre Dame Fighting Irish (13-12, 4-8 ACC)

Notre Dame bubble
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Jerian Grant was one of the best players in the nation and he was by far the best player on the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Too bad he is no longer on the team because the Fighting Irish have really been struggling ever since the loss of their star player earlier in the season.

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Marquette Golden Eagles (14-10, 6-5 Big East)

Marquette bubble
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The Big East may not have some of its top dogs anymore, but that has not made the conference any easier on the Marquette Golden Eagles. At least not this season.

Fans should have pushed the panic button when they found out that Vander Blue was taking his talents to the next level.

Marquette did enter the season with some talent, but the players lost were way too much to overcome.

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Georgetown Hoyas (15-9, 6-6 Big East)

Georgetown bubble
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Georgetown could still make the tournament and their four-game win streak definitely helps. That is especially true since the Hoyas have beaten Michigan State and Providence during that time.

Still, this is a team that lost five games in a row at one point and has no shot at winning the Big East.

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Butler Bulldogs (12-13, 2-11 Big East)

Butler Bulldogs
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Butler has been one of the darlings of the NCAA tournament over the last couple of years. The Bulldogs did make it to the national championship game two years in a row a couple of seasons ago. Both teams shocked the college hoops world by doing so.

Well, the Bulldogs’ record speaks for itself. The lose of Brad Stevens was apparently a huge one.

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Illinois Fighting Illini (14-11, 3-9 Big Ten)

Illinois Fighting Illini
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Illinois sits at the bottom of a very competitive Big Ten Conference. Many teams from this conference will end up making the dance. Looks like the Fighting Illini missed the memo.

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UNLV Rebels (16-8, 7-4 MW)

UNLV bubble
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UNLV lost Anthony Bennett and Mike Moser over the offseason, but it is still managing to compete in the Mountain West Conference.

Unfortunately, the Rebels are running out of time and have some head-scratching non-conference losses. At the end of the day, the lack of quality wins is really going to hurt this team’s chances of dancing.

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Indiana Hoosiers (14-10, 4-7 Big Ten)

Indiana bubble
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Yet another Indiana school that will likely not make the dance. This will not be the last Indiana school in this article either.

The Hoosiers entered the season with expectations they could not meet. They lost four of their best players last season and fans should have seen a rebuilding year coming.

Still, Indiana does have big wins against Wisconsin and Michigan. However, it also has 10 losses and is closer to the bottom of the Big Ten standings than the top.

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Maryland Terrapins (14-11, 6-6 ACC)

Maryland bubble
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A win against the Connecticut Huskies could have gotten the season off on a very good note for the Maryland Terrapins. Instead, Maryland lost by one point and then lost against Oregon State two games later.

Just like most of the teams in this slideshow, the overall record and conference record should tell you more than enough.

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Temple Owls (6-17, 1-10 AAC)

Temple Owls
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The Temple Owls are a horrible team this season. Losing leading scorer Khalif Wyatt (among others) over the offseason really hurt and it has shown all season long.

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Purdue Boilermakers (14-10, 4-7 Big Ten)

Purdue bubble
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Purdue didn’t really have any national attention entering the season, but it did have some talent.

Still, the resume just isn’t good enough and like Indiana, the Boilermakers are near the bottom of the Big Ten standings.