8. Richmond - The Spiders come to the Islands really hurting after a 33 point home loss to Jacksonville State. They have had a full week to prepare for this three day event. Unfortunately for the Spiders there are too many flaws to overcome. I see them losing three straight.
7. South Dakota State - The preseason favorites to win The Summit League has much higher hopes than 7th place for this tournament. I see them finishing here after close losses in their first two games. Mike Daum is the real deal, and is a load to defend against, watch out for him in the Caymans.
6. Buffalo - Juniors Nick Perkins, Jeremy Harris, and C.J. Massinburg lead the Bulls and their 2-0 record into the Caymans. With the weather beginning to get cold in Buffalo, I'm sure they are happy to get some sun for a few days. Buffalo is a contender this season in the MAC. They face a tough draw against Cincinnati, but I see them bouncing back with a Tuesday win over Richmond before finishing in 6th.
5. Louisiana-Lafayette - The Rajun Cajuns are one of the stronger Sun Belt teams and should give Iowa a run for their money in the opener. ULL Starts 2 seniors and 3 juniors and have a spark of the bench with Freshman Guard Cedric Russell. Fun team to watch. They had a rough loss in the season opener at Ole Miss, but are now 2-1. I see them bouncing back nicely after the Iowa game and finishing 5th.
4. Wyoming - It's been a week since the tough road win at3. Oregon State and I'm sure the Wyoming players are ready to get back on the court. I imagine Hayden Dalton is, he had a sensational game in the win at OSU. I think the Cowboys get past S. Dakota. St. in round one, before losing two tough ones, and end up in 4th. But watch out, this team is capable of reaching the final.
3. UAB - So far so good for UAB as they come into this tournament 3-0 and an average winning margin of over 30 PPG. Now the competition stiffens. They draw Richmond, which should be a win, but then run into the favorites Cincinnati in the Semi's. I see them losing there, but turning around and getting a hard fought win over Wyoming to finish in 3rd.
2. Iowa - Fran McCaffery's bunch has had a breeze of a schedule so far. Playing against the #341, #342, and #344 ranked teams out of 351. I had Iowa as a tournament team preseason, and now this will be there first of plenty of chances to prove that. I see them beating Louisiana Lafayette and Wyoming before losing in the final. None of the three will be easy.
1. Cincinnati - Cincy is the class of this tournament coming in. I would be pretty surprised to see them not win this. But with three games in three days anything can happen. The Bearcats have been going with a 10 man rotation, so that should bode well to be fresh throughout the event. Enjoy the tournament!