This weekend, Terminus will be taking place in Atlanta, GA. It’s the last big tournament of the year with multiple nationals contenders looking to get some last minute wins to affect bid allocation for their respective regions. Not only will I be looking at just outcome of pool play, but region implications.
Tufts is in dire need of another team strength bid. With Harvard competing with the best of the best, Tufts is the clear number two in the Northeast. They have the best resume out of any of these teams at Terminus, with some strong scores at Prez day and convincing wins at College Southerns. An undefeated showing here would probably secure another bid for the Northeast.
Contra had a solid showing at Queen City Tune Up, and a great Midwest Throwdown. A solid young team who seems to be coming out of the woodwork. Also watch for those sweet Jerseys. I expect them to give Tufts a tough game, but I don’t think it will be enough.
The Pranksters had a strong showing early in the season, with their only loss coming to Florida at T-Town Throwdown. I would bet on them to finish second in the pool over Washington U. I don’t think you can discount their previous years national experience this late into a spring season. The Middlebury Tufts game would be the one to watch on Saturday, too bad I won’t be there till Sunday.
Alabama has several very talented players in Tim Brady and Zack Moore. They’re biggest disadvantage is their depth, so I wonder how they are going to handle a tough schedule such as this. None the less, expect them to give one of the three top seeds a tough game.
The Cinderella of the 2011 season so far, made it to College Easterns, and didn’t do half bad. They’re one of the last teams with strength bids, and they’re going to need to hold on to it to make it to nationals. Danny Olson and Mitch Cihon lead the surprising Bearcats this season, who will show if they were able to grow from their Easterns experience. I think they’ll face tough challenges from Stanford and UNCW on Saturday. This day may be more about survival than domination, and I’m not sure they can afford that.
The surprising thing is, I’m not sure that UNCW is in need of another bid to nationals for the Atlantic Coast. They dropped the ball early in the season by being inconsistent. They are well coached and take advantage of 1 dimensional teams. With an Atlantic Coast region that isn’t deep, UNCW should end up in semifinals or finals. In a one game situation against UVA, they will have a solid chance of getting to the big show in Boulder.
Stanford hasn’t quite seen the success they had in 2009. It looks like they’re going to have a difficult time getting out of one the toughest regions. I would imagine that facing good competition is only going to help them prepare for the series.
Williams finds themselves in the middle of the pack at this tournament. I don’t think they’ll be able to take down UNCW or Ohio, but could give Stanford a game.
Emory – B5 – South East
Unfortunately I think Emory is relegated to the bottom of the barrel at this tournament. Sweet Jerseys though.
Ohio State-C1-Ohio Valley
Phil Cherosky is the motor that keeps Leadbelly running. His play style reminds me of Stephen Presley from 2009 nationals, with a constant handler cuts. They, like Ohio, are in need of preserving the second bid to nationals. If things hold seed, they’ll be meeting their regional rival in the semis. This isn’t good for either team, as they want wins out of region. Central Florida hasn’t really been tested too much, so I’m curious how this pool is going to work out. Either way, they’re going to be in contention on Sunday.
Central Florida – C2- South East
This team has to come out and dominate if they have hope at reaching Nationals. Florida is going to take the first bid, and without a second bid there’s little hope. I don’t think they’re capable of winning big, but they could upset Ohio State for first in the pool. I hope to get a chance to watch them on Sunday because I haven’t been able to see them all season.
Georgia Tech-C3-South East
Nick Lance is the player that gives Georgia Tech a chance in each game. Andrew Fish, Ben Hogan, and Sean Balla are the Tribe’s supporting cast. They haven’t been at full strength since ACC’s early in the season. Georgia Tech has further to go in the rankings, so it’s going to be even tougher for them to gain that big for the South East. They would definitely be in the hunt for the second bid if it appears.
George Washington – C4-Atlantic Coast
An unknown, but a team that has been at the top of the former Metro East region. Be interesting to see what they have in them for this weekend.
MIT – C5 – North East
I played this team once and I asked the dude who was guarding me if he was an astro physicist. He said yes.
Pool D or Pool of Death:
Illinois – D1 – Great Lakes
Illinois has been hyped as a good team all season, but hasn’t gone out to play the top tiered teams. Without a second bid, they may miss out with Michigan playing like a top 5 team. A team I’ll have my eye on during bracket play.
Dartmouth-D2- North East
With the amount of North East teams here, if they were all to do well, you could feasibly see them stealing a team strength bid. While I don’t think that’s going to happen, it’s going to be difficult for Dartmouth to grab a team strength bid. The Georgia-Dartmouth game should be another interesting Saturday game. They could easily finish fourth in this pool if they aren’t ready for the tough schedule.
Georgia still has talent to compete, but I haven’t seen them put it together this season. They’re in the same boat as the other south eastern teams, and most likely will be fighting for the game to go.
North Carolina -D4-Atlantic Coast
This is a team that has young talent. If Noah Saul is back, this team should have a chance to do some damage this tournament. Christian Johnson could be the FOTY in the AC region, and Tristan Green looks like a young Alex Hill. Thomas SayreMccord is the big deep threat. The thing that is holding them back is valuing the disc. Drops have killed them in previous tournaments, and will be the reason for any losses this time around.
Oberlin – D5 – Ohio Valley
Atlanta has nice weather, check out Jim and Nix BBQ.
Pool Winners: Tufts, Ohio, UCF, Illinois
See you on Sunday.