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NCAA Basketball: AAC and Big Ten highlight this week’s Sunday Mailbag

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 26: head coach Penny Hardaway of the Memphis Tigers reacts during the first half against the Iowa State Cyclones in the NIT Season Tip-Off tournament at Barclays Center on November 26, 2021 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 26: head coach Penny Hardaway of the Memphis Tigers reacts during the first half against the Iowa State Cyclones in the NIT Season Tip-Off tournament at Barclays Center on November 26, 2021 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images) /
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NCAA Basketball Nov 19, 2021 David Yeazell-USA TODAY Sports
NCAA Basketball Nov 19, 2021 David Yeazell-USA TODAY Sports /

Is the Atlantic 10 a single-bid league this year? – Bandit Barbecue (@BBQ4REAL)

The Atlantic 10 has not performed very well to date. Saint Bonaventure was the team that everyone had pegged to run away and hide in the league and secure an at large bid. While I think that still happens, the Bonnies are without their star player in point guard Kyle Lofton. The Bonnies only play five guys so their depth is going to be tested here in the next couple of games as their schedule really ramps up.

Saint Bonaventure needs to be good and needs to get a slew of quality wins under their belt to make sure that the league can get multiple bids into the tournament. The league does still have wins over the ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, and the Big East and the SEC  The other teams who are going to be in contention for an at-large bid at this point are the Dayton Flyers and the VCU Rams.

Dayton has the best wins for the conference as they were able to beat Kansas and Belmont during Feast Week when they won the ESPN Events Invitational. Those wins turned what was potentially going to be a terrible season after three bad losses into a potentially great season. Dayton is a young team as they have mostly freshmen and sophomores who play the bulk of the minutes and they are going to have ups and downs but with the wins they currently have and they can acquire they have a chance to secure an at large bid even being close to .500.

VCU is the team that has not started out well at all. Their offense has been dreadful up to this point in the year but they did get back their star point guard in Ace Baldwin and he is paired with the defensive and shot-blocking stalwart Hasan Ward VCU becomes a much better team. They did beat Syracuse and have a schedule the rest of the way that will allow them to rack up some wins and find themselves securely on the bubble come Selection Sunday.

Davidson is one of the teams I have ranked along with Saint Louis and the Billikens just need to win games at this point. If they finish in the top half three of the league they are likely going to win and will have beaten some teams ahead of them. Davidson should never be counted out, and they have not beaten anyone great this year, but they do win games when it counts. Don’t count out the Wildcats as Coach McKillop is going to have them playing well when it counts.

The league only deserves one bid at this point, and if Saint Bonaventure turns out to struggle without Lofton and loses some games it is going to be much harder for the league to get multiple bids so everyone should hope that doesn’t happen because it would be devastating for the league. VCU and Dayton also need to reel off a bunch of wins and get themselves on the right side of the bubble right now. That is the best-case scenario for a multi-bid league.