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DMV College Basketball Conference Tournament Preview

Updated: Mar 11, 2023

The DMV (D.C., Maryland, Virginia), has five college basketball teams that I’ve been covering for House Enterprise/Road to the Garden throughout the 2022-23 season. Beginning on February 28 and continuing until at least March 9, those five teams will begin postseason play at their respective conference tournaments.

One team is likely already in the NCAA Tournament, the other four will have to win its respective conference tournament in order to make the Big Dance.

There are tons of storylines as postseason play tips off, highlighted with multiple area head coaches on the hot seat while two first-year head coaches are exceeding expectations.

In this article, I'll break down what each team has done this season and how things might shake out in each conference tournament throughout the DMV.

I’ll update the article as needed, likely daily, but we’ll start with chronological order, dropping teams to the bottom if/when they are eliminated.


1 seed in MEAC Tournament

  • League Standings: HERE

  • MEAC Tournament Bracket: HERE

  • Tournament Dates: March 8-11

  • Location: Norfolk Scope Arena, Norfolk, VA

  • Head Coach: Kenny Blakeney (4th season, 42-58 record at Howard)

  • Record: 21-12 (11-3 in MEAC)

  • Last 10: 8-2

  • NEXT GAME: 3/11 vs. Norfolk State in Final of MEAC Tournament

  • NCAA Tournament Appearances: 2

  • Last NCAA Tournament Appearance: 1992

  • Odds to make 2023 NCAA Tournament: 15%

Howard won its first MEAC regular season championship since 1987 on the final night of the regular season in an emphatic 87-67 win over Norfolk State in Washington, D.C.

On Wednesday, the Bison opened up MEAC Tournament play with a dominant 91-55 victory over South Carolina State to advance to the semifinals.

13 different players scored for Howard, led by DMV Star of the Week Bryce Harris, who scored 20 points in 17 minutes off the bench.

In the semifinals, the Bison outscored Maryland Eastern Shore by 15 in the second half to pull away for a 74-55 victory.

The win sends Howard to the MEAC Tournament Championship game for the first time in 30 years.

Howard has a team that is built for tournament play. Kenny Blakeney tends to do 'platoon swaps' in substitutions, meaning he'll sub in four or five new players at any time.

That could bode well for Howard as they head to Norfolk, VA for the MEAC Tournament, looking to win just one more game to make it to the NCAA Tournament for the first time sine 1992.

HU (you know) already ended one streak that stretched over three decades by winning the MEAC regular season title. Can they end another streak and make it back to the Big Dance?

There's no doubt they have the team. Can they get it done one last time in Norfolk?


TBD Seed in NCAA Tournament

  • League Standings: HERE

  • Big Ten Tournament Bracket: HERE

  • Tournament Dates: March 8-12

  • Location: United Center, Chicago, IL

  • Head Coach: Kevin Willard (1st season at Maryland)

  • Record: 21-12 (11-9 in Big Ten)

  • Last 10: 5-5


  • NCAA Tournament Appearances: 29

  • Last NCAA Tournament Appearance: 2021

  • Odds to make 2023 NCAA Tournament: 99%

As crazy as it would have been to say before the season...there is no way (probably) Maryland is going to miss the NCAA Tournament.

In the first year under Head Coach Kevin Willard, Maryland went undefeated at home in the Big 10.

Maryland finished 10-0 at home in the Big 10, including a win over #3 Purdue on Feb. 16 / Photo: Maryland Athletics

Not bad for a team projected to finish 10th out of 14 teams.

Willard spent 12 seasons at Seton Hall and took the Pirates to the NCAA Tournament six times, including six of his last seven years.

In year one in College Park, he's taken minimal expectations and has instead given the Terps something to be excited about: the future.

Although the core of its best players are seniors, including Jahmir Young, Donta Scott and Hakim Hart, Willard has proven that he can deliver at Maryland.

The Terps are basically a lock for the tournament, likely to be in the 6-10 seed range.

My main reservation about Maryland is how they'll fare away from home when the season is on the line.

Maryland has a stellar 16-1 record at home. The issue is that they have no more home games this season.

The flip side of the great record in College Park is that the Terps are 5-11 away from home while averaging 8 less points per game.

Now that the Big 10 Tournament run for Maryland has come to an end, their focus shifts toward Selection Sunday and the NCAA Tournament.

The Terps will hear their name called on Sunday. Can't take away that accomplishment from Kevin Willard and co. in year one.


Georgetown Hoyas - ELIMINATED

11 seed in Big East Tournament

  • League Standings: HERE

  • Big East Tournament Bracket: HERE

  • Tournament Dates: March 8-11

  • Location: Madison Square Garden, New York City, NY

  • Head Coach: Patrick Ewing (6th season, 75-110 record at Georgetown)

  • Record: 7-25 (2-18 in Big East)

  • Last 10: 1-9


  • NCAA Tournament Appearances: 31

  • Last NCAA Tournament Appearance: 2021

  • Odds to make 2023 NCAA Tournament: <1%

That's it. The Georgetown season is finally over following an embarrassing 80-48 loss to Villanova in the opening round of the Big East Tournament on Wednesday night.

The Hoyas lost the last two games of the season by a combined 72 points. If you want to include the last three games, it's 92 points.

Georgetown seemingly gave up in the face of adversity in the final weeks of the season and who could blame them?

Over the past two seasons, Patrick Ewing's record is 13-50 and 2-39 in the Big East (including conference tournament play).

There isn't a coach at any level in any sport that would have even lasted until this point. But he's Patrick Ewing, the most legendary player the program has ever seen.

Any chance to walk away with dignity and

pride has passed. The program is in the worst state it has likely ever been and will take a herculean effort to pull it back to relevancy.

13-50 over the last two years and 2-39 in conference.

Not competitive. Not even close.

Change is coming.


George Washington Colonials - ELIMINATED 7 seed in Atlantic 10 Tournament

  • League Standings: HERE

  • Atlantic 10 Tournament Bracket: HERE

  • Tournament Dates: March 7-12

  • Location: Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY

  • Head Coach: Chris Caputo (1st season at GW)

  • Record: 16-16 (10-8 in Atlantic 10)

  • Last 10: 5-5


  • NCAA Tournament Appearances: 11

  • Last NCAA Tournament Appearance: 2014

  • Odds to make 2023 NCAA Tournament: 1%

A bitterly disappointing end to an otherwise successful first season for Chris Caputo and George Washington as the Colonials lost their opening Atlantic 10 Tournament game on Wednesday to Saint Joseph's, 87-76 in Brooklyn.

"I thought we had some nice moments, we took a step from being picked 12th to finishing tied for sixth, but if that's all we do it's not good enough," Caputo said after the loss. "You used to have to sell the vision without any evidence, now we have a bit of evidence to show whaat this could look like if we continue to get better."

In what was potentially his last game for GW, James Bishop IV had a tremendous performance, dropping 25 points while dishing out 8 assists and hauling in 5 rebounds. Ricky Lindo had a double-double with 20 points and 10 rebounds.

The Colonials have eight seniors, some with additional eligibility, some without. Not to mention that they will no longer be named the "Colonials" when next season begins.

GW was better in 2022-23 than a .500 record, but could never find the consistency on defense to prove it. Caputo should have fans excited about the direction of the program as we head into the offseason.

Can he build off of this momentum in 2023-24?


7 seed in Patriot League Tournament

  • League Standings: HERE

  • Patriot League Tournament Bracket: HERE

  • Tournament Dates: February 28, March 2, March 5, March 8

  • Location: Campus sites

  • Head Coach: Mike Brennan (10th season, 125-166 record at American)

  • Record: 17-15 overall (7-11 in Patriot)

  • Last 10: 5-5


  • NCAA Tournament Appearances: 3

  • Last NCAA Tournament Appearance: 2014

  • Odds to make 2023 NCAA Tournament: 1%

A wild run in the Patriot League Tournament came to an end for American on Sunday afternoon in a heartbreaking 84-76 double-overtime loss to Lafayette.

AU trailed by as many as 21 points, including 19 with just over 8 minutes to go before mounting a ferocious comeback, even taking the lead with less than a minute to play in regulation, before heading to overtime.

In the first overtime, the Eagles had a 5 point lead with 23 seconds to go but couldn't hold on to win.

In the second overtime, Lafayette poured it on, scoring the first ten points and pulled away for victory.

Matt Rogers, who was Second-Team All Patriot League, finished with a game-high 24 points and added 13 rebounds, including 10 on the offensive glass.

But it wasn't enough to propel the Eagles to the Patriot League title game against Colgate.

A tremendous run from the 7-seeded Eagles, who had lost six straight games entering the conference tournament. Despite trailing in both the quarterfinals and semifinals by double-digits, they never wavered and fought down til the end.

Disappointing at times, but with AU winning the most games in a season since 2014-15, it'd be hard to not call this year a success.


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