Busting Brackets

SWAC basketball: After a chaotic weekend Texas Southern rises and Jackson State falls in our 2nd Power Rankings.

Jackson State Tigers' guard Chase Adams (10) tries to maneuver around Texas Southern Tigers' forward
Jackson State Tigers' guard Chase Adams (10) tries to maneuver around Texas Southern Tigers' forward / Lauren Witte/Clarion Ledger / USA TODAY
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6. Bethune-Cookman (Last Week: 4) (Last Weekend’s Record: 1-1) SWAC: 4-3 (upcoming games 2/03 @ASU 2/05 @AAMU)

A three-point loss to Alcorn is the difference between being number 6 in my rankings and possibly being top 3. The Wildcats continue to prove they will find ways to compete and win games. Zion Harmon returned from injury with 23 points against Jackson State. He also scored 23 points against Alcorn State on Monday. The Wildcats have been fortunate to play 5 of their first 7 SWAC games at home. A difficult Alabama swing awaits BCU. I see this team being a 4 or 5 seed in the SWAC tournament, so they must have success away from home.

5. Alcorn State (Last Week: 8) (Last Weekend’s Record: 2-0) SWAC: 4-3 (upcoming games: 2/03 vs SU 2/05 vs GSU)

A two game sweep on their Florida trip has the Braves moving into the top 5. Right now the Braves are looking like the team that won the SWAC regular season last year. Balanced scoring (4 double-digit scorers against FAMU and 3 against BCU) and being careful with the ball (26 total turnovers) were the name of the game for the Braves. There is a 4-team logjam at 4-3, I think the Braves are the best of that bunch. They are definitely a legitimate title contender.

4. Alabama State (Last Week: 3) (Last Weekend’s Record: 1-1) SWAC: 5-2 (upcoming games: 2/03 vs BCU 2/05 vs FAMU)

Not being able to close the door on Texas Southern is the only reason the Hornets aren't number one in my rankings. In my opinion, getting a split on your road trips is always the goal, and the Hornets did that. Although the Hornets are tied for first place in the SWAC, I'm still not sure if they have staying power. TJ Madlock has to continue to lead the way if this team wants to keep pace. February is the most important month to make a title run. This is an crucial weekend, if the Hornets go 2-0 my doubts will disappear.