Beware! Spoilers ahead

As teams like Rutgers and UCLA heat up, it spells trouble for teams sitting on the bubble. Plus, Purdue wins again, what happens to Ohio State's current roster, a UConn-Marquette preview and leagues that could be multi-bid leagues.

Life’s tough enough on the bubble. The last thing you need are spoilers around, ready to pop that bubble. Thursday night showed two examples in the Big Ten and Pac-12.

Also, props to Caitlin Clark, who became women’s hoops all-time leading scorer with 49 points in a win on Thursday. She’s an icon.

Let’s get to the rest of the news.

1. You don’t want to play Rutgers or UCLA

Just a few weeks ago, Rutgers was with Michigan and Ohio State in the Big Ten’s basement. But the addition/eligibility of Iowa State transfer guard Jeremiah Williams altered its direction.

A 63-60 win over Northwestern on Thursday night has the Scarlet Knights at 4-0 he stepped on the court.

The offense is still classic Rutgers. It hit 39.6% of its shots, but it held Northwestern to 36% from the floor and forced 15 turnovers, a rarity for a team that ranks among the top 20 in turnover%.

Did it help that Northwestern (17-8, 8-6 in Big Ten) was already down a guard in Ty Berry (out for the season) and then lost Ryan Langborg to flagrant two foul? Sure. Boo Buie looked like he might have been enough — he had 17 first-half points and finished with 27 — but Rutgers got a 12-0 run, including a nice block from Williams, who went for 15. He’s led Rutgers (14-10, 6-7 in Big Ten) in scoring in each of the past four games.

Rutgers is just 90th in the NET and 2-8 vs Quad 1 opponents. It needs a serious run to be considered for an at-large bid. Northwestern’s still comfortably in most brackets, but with a NET of 60, it can’t afford any more missteps.

The West Coast has an even scarier bubble burster.

UCLA notched its sixth-straight win, beating Colorado 63-60 on Thursday. The Bruins (14-11, 9-5 in Pac-12) got 19 from Sebastian Mack, while Adem Bona chipped in 14 points and seven rebounds. Dylan Andrews, who has been key to the team’s turnaround, had 13 points on the night and is averaging 16.2 ppg in the last six games.

The Bruins’ resume is even worse than Rutgers, with four Quad 3/4 losses and 0-6 versus Quad 1 teams. However, they’re 3rd in the Pac-12 standings and have a viable path to the autobid. They had a double-digit lead on the road at Arizona in their first meeting and have them at home in a couple of weeks.

Colorado? It’s 16-9 overall and 7-7 in the Pac-12, with a NET of 42. But the Buffs have dropped four of their last five and are trending toward the wrong side of the bubble.

You can listen to more bubble analysis during Fielding the 68 today at 5:30. Watch it on Twitter or on YouTube.


Stop what you’re doing and download the Autograph: Fandom Rewarded app.

Autograph, co-founded by the GOAT himself Tom Brady, recently launched an app that allows diehard fans to earn one-of-a-kind rewards and once-in-a-lifetime experiences simply by flexing their fandom.


With the Autograph App, you have everything a college basketball fan would want in one place: articles from your favorite bloggers, podcasts from your favorite hosts, the best beat writers and influencer takes … a 360-degree view of your favorite team in real time.

But, it gets better. Every time you read, listen or share about what your favorite teams are up to in the Autograph App, you get points, climb a leaderboard, and have the chance to land authentically awesome rewards, curated exclusively for you.

Click this link or use the QR CODE here to download the app, and use the code "F68' when you do.

2. Purdue survives hot-shooting Gophers + more results

Speaking of feisty, Minnesota has proved to be better than expected, both in win projections and via Vegas. Giving No. 2 Purdue a test wasn’t a surprise. What was surprising was its shot-making early on.

Subscribe to The Field of 68 Daily to read the rest.

Become a paying subscriber of The Field of 68 Daily to get access to this post and other subscriber-only content.

Already a paying subscriber? Sign In