This week sees two conferences begin their postseason, with some seasons about to end for some Top 10 teams. Here's a look at how it's looking like each team will match up with its first round foe.
Here's this week's CIS top 10; and the RPI, SRS and other relevant metrics.
No. 1 Carleton Ravens (22-0 OUA, 28-0 CIS, no. 4 RPI, SRS +23.2) - NO CHANGE
Unless York can pull off a massive upset of Ottawa (note: they can't), the Ravens will host the winner of Laurentian vs. Toronto. And as much as I'd like to say the Pasquale brothers or Toronto's veteran presence could threaten Carleton's undefeated season, it's not going to happen.
No. 2 Lakehead Thunderwolves (20-2 OUA, 29-2 CIS, no. 8 RPI, SRS +12.9) - NO CHANGE
The Thunderwolves will host Guelph (if they beat Laurier), Brock (if they beat Windsor and Laurier beats Guelph) or Windsor (if they beat Brock and Laurier beats Guelph). The Lancers managed to play Lakehead tough in their weekend series, with the Thunderwolves escaping with 87-83 and 85-79 victories. The Lancers might be the most athletic and strongest team in the conference, especially at the forward spots, giving Lakehead's smaller frontline some serious matchup problems.
No. 3 Saskatchewan Huskies (16-4 CW, 21-5 CIS, no. 1 RPI, SRS +14.9) - NO CHANGE
Host Trinity Western, a team they handled pretty easily in November, in a best-of-three series starting Friday night. A relatively easy schedule has allowed the Huskies to win 10 straight, but they should be able to handle a weaker Spartan team on their home court.
No. 4 UFV Cascades (13-5 CW, 17-5 CIS, no. 5 RPI, +9.0 SRS) - NO CHANGE
One of the most unexpected contenders of the year, UFV will host Lethbridge, a team that did what no one else did in 2012 by beating the Cascades at home. Lethbridge won that game by dominating the boards and getting to the free throw line 44 times (even though they made just 26 of them.
No. 5 Victoria Vikes (14-4 CW, 15-6 CIS, no. 6 RPI, +10.4 SRS) - UP FROM NO. 6
Thanks to Ryan MacKinnon's huge three-pointer, the Vikes will host Calgary. In their only meeting this season, the Vikes handled the Dinos pretty handily on enemy soil (that's what they call Alberta in BC, right?). That was, however, before CIS all-time leading scorer Boris Bakovic returned from injury, making this one of the more intriguing first-round matchups.
No. 6 St. FX X-Men (15-4 AUS, 25-4 CIS, no. 4 RPI, +7.0 SRS) - UP FROM NO. 8
After some mid-semester struggles, X seems to have righted the ship. They're on a six-game winning streak and have locked up the top seed in the AUS playoffs with one week to go. Their final regular season contest comes this Saturday at home against Saint Mary's. Also, they'll be feeling good about how they share the ball after Memorial's scorekeepers predictably and hilariously gave them an assist on every single field goal in their 75-64 win over the Seahawks.
No. 7 UBC Thunderbirds (13-4 CW, 19-5 CIS, no. 7 RPI, +11.8 SRS) - DOWN FROM NO. 5
and No. 8 Alberta Golden Bears (14-6 CW, 16-7 CIS, no. 3 RPI, +9.7 SRS) - UP FROM NO. 9
Last weekend's loss to Victoria means the Thunderbirds will be in the unfamiliar position of starting their playoff drive on the road against Alberta. This should be the closest of the best-of-three series this weekend, with UBC's veteran presence from Kamar Burke and Nathan Yu facing up against Alberta's dynamic duo of Jordan Baker and Daniel Ferguson. You can catch the game, by the way, at Canadawest.tv.
No. 9 McMaster Marauders (17-5 OUA, 19-7 CIS, no. 11 RPI, +9.7 SRS) UP FROM NO. 10
One has to think that as much as the Marauders have dominated the Laurier Golden Hawks in their two meetings this season - the latest a 93-67 shellacking with a first-round bye on the line - they'd love to see Brock or Guelph come to the Burridge Gym this weekend. Windsor beat them twice, and Laurier is a tough team to beat three times in a row (should the). One big question to answer will be whether Mac gets captain Victor Raso and his sharp perimeter shooting back from a concussion.
No. 10 Laurier Golden Hawks (16-6 OUA, 22-10 CIS, no. 17 RPI, +8.4 SRS) - DOWN FROM NO. 7
Last week I said it was too early to say the wheels have come off of Laurier's season. Now, it's hard to suggest otherwise. Their no-show in a massive game for a first-round bye is a troubling sign for a team that has lacked urgency in February. Now, they'll need to beat a scrappy Guelph tonight for the right to face Mac again. How the sorta-mighty have fallen.
THE "UPPER DECK" TOP-10
9. St. F-X
THE "DAMN, I MISSED ONE." LINE OF THE WEEK: St. FX's Terry Thomas went 11/12 for 29 points and seven rebounds in a blowout win over Memorial.
THE "GOOD TIME TO SHOW UP, MAX" BAD LINE OF THE WEEK: Max Allin's 2/16 performance (against a pretty tough defensive matchup, it should be said) in Laurier's biggest game of the year is pretty bogus.