Bahamian players on course for possible NCAA tournament berth

By RENALDO DORSETT Sports Reporter rdorsett@tribunemedia.net CHAMPIONSHIP week is underway in NCAA men's Division I Basketball and several Bahamian players are on course for a possible conference tournament win and ultimately a berth in the NCAA tournament. The Sun Belt, Mountain West, Conference USA and SEC tournaments will each feature teams with Bahamians on their rosters. In the Sun Belt, teammates Scottie Farrington, Kentwan Smith and Kadeem Coleby of the Louisiana Lafayette were eliminated in a 65-62 loss to the North Texas Mean Green in the quarterfinals on Sunday night. Coleby scored seven points and grabbed five rebounds in 30 minutes while Farrington came off the bench to finish with three points, three rebounds and two blocks in just nine minutes and Smith was limited to just two minutes on the floor. Neither team led by more than five points and there were 20 lead changes - 12 in the second half. In last night's semifinals, the fifth-seeded Mean Green will face ninth seeded Arkansas State, upset winners over regular-season Sun Belt champion Middle Tennessee State on Sunday. The Rajun Cajuns finished 16-15 on the year, 10-6 in the Sunbelt. Coleby, a 6' 9" junior forward, finished second on the team in scoring at 9.7 points per game and third with five rebounds per game. Farrington, a 6' 7" forward in his senior year, averaged 2.4 points and two rebounds per game while Smith, a 6'8" freshman, averaged 2.3 points and 1.7 rebounds per game. In the SEC, Dwight Miller and the Tennessee Volunteers were awarded with a No.2 seed when their conference tournament begins Thursday. With the seeding, the Volunteers will receive a first round bye and will face the winner of the Ole Miss vs. Auburn game in the opening round. In 21 games this season, the 6'8" Miller has averaged 2.7 points and 1.6 rebounds per game. His best outing came in a 10-point, seven-rebound performance in a 73-60 win over Ole Miss on February 22. The Volunteers have ended the regular season, reeling off wins in eight of their last nine outings following a loss to Kentucky on January 31. In Conference USA, although Mikhail McLean has been sidelined for much of the year with a stress fracture, his Houston Cougars are slated to take on UTEP in the opening round of their conference tournament on Wednesday night. The teams split their meetings on the season with UTEP taking the first matchup, 70-50, while Houston won game two 81-76 in overtime. McLean played in just five contests this year before the injury and averaged 2.2 points and three rebounds per game. Season The Cougars will seek a medical redshirt to exempt McLean from this season, counting towards his eligibility. In the Mountain West, JR Cadot and the TCU Horned Frogs take on the Colorado State Rams in the quarterfinal of the Mountain West Conference at the Thomas and Mack Center in Las Vegas on Thursday. Cadot currently averages 11.3 points and 7.0 rebounds per game as TCU holds a 17-13 record on the season in the Mountain West Conference. He currently leads the team in rebounding and is second in scoring. These teams split their regular season matchups with each team holding serve on its home court. Colorado State remains on the NCAA Tournament bubble in contention for an at-large bid.


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