February is here as the college basketball season is entering the final stretch with teams looking to make the final push to get into the field of 68.
The LSU Tigers of Johnny Jones are coming off a tough loss to No. 1 Oklahoma on Saturday, 77-75. A win over the Sooners could have provided LSU with a much need boost to their RPI and an impressive win on their resume’.
LSU (13-8, 6-2) moved up one spot to No. 82 in the NCAA RPI rankings and are ranked No. 82 in Warren Nolan as well. The Tigers are No. 79 in the ESPN rankings.
The Tigers will travel to Auburn on Tuesday and host Mississippi State on Saturday. LSU may not have a strong enough RPI to make the field of 68 without a strong finish. Opportunities to earn an at-large loom with Texas A&M, Florida and South Carolina still on the horizon.
Eric Konkol’s Louisiana Tech Bulldogs have won three straight following a win over UTEP, 78-70.
The Bulldogs (16-5, 5-3) have an RPI of No. 134 in the NCAA and Warren Nolan rankings while they are No. 135 in ESPN.
Louisiana Tech and other in-state schools will have to win their conference tournaments in order to make the field of 68.
Here are the college basketball RPI rankings that pertain to Louisiana schools by NCAA, Warren Nolan and ESPN:
Team ESPN/NCAA/Warren Nolan
Louisiana Tech 135/134/134
McNesse St. 297/298/297
Nicholls St. 318/318/318
Grambling St. 338/337/337
Northwestern St. 339/340/341
As for conference RPIs, the SEC is No. 5 which bodes well for LSU to make a push for the field of 68. The American is No. 8 while the Sun Belt is No. 17. Conference USA is No. 22 which does not help Louisiana Tech being in a conference that has a low RPI.
Here are the conference RPI rankings that pertain to Louisiana schools by Warren Nolan:
Conference USA- 22