Thursday, January 12, 2017

Money ball: Financial restraints can keep SWAC basketball teams from reaching their full potential

BATON ROUGE, Louisianav -- The Southwestern Athletic Conference won the first NCAA tournament game it ever played in.

In 1980, back when the Big Dance wasn’t quite as big, No. 8 seed Alcorn State defeated No. 9 South Alabama 70-62 before losing to Dale Brown’s LSU Tigers in the next round.

The Braves won three tournament games in five years in what is undoubtably the most successful postseason run for a SWAC program.

A few years later, Southern became the first team to win a game in the round of 62 when the No. 13 Jaguars toppled Georgia Tech in one of the biggest moments in program history.

Since then, the SWAC has won one NCAA tournament game: a play-in contest between Arkansas-Pine Bluff and Winthrop in 2010.

In 23 years, no SWAC team climbed higher than a No. 15 seed, with nine teams competing in play-in games since the NCAA instituted the round in 2001.


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