By Adam Keehn
Regular season play has come to a close for Sun Belt men’s basketball and now the conference tournament has arrived. With the 54-58 loss to South Alabama on Tuesday, Mar. 3, the Texas State Bobcats hold the #3 seed. Here is a look at the tournament bracket:
On Wednesday, Mar. 11, Texas State will play either Appalachian State, UTA, or Coastal Carolina, depending on the results of games two and four. This Wednesday’s match feels favorable to the Bobcats in a couple ways. First, the game will be played in San Marcos at Strahan Arena, where Texas State is most comfortable.
The maroon and gold were a strong 14-3 this season when staying local including winning the last six games they played at home. Second, the Bobcats are led by the 2019-2020 Sun Belt Conference Player of the Year, senior guard Nijal Pearson. Pearson and Eric Terry will be playing their last ever game at Strahan Arena, on Wednesday, and it’s a big one.
How fitting would it be to see UTA get through Coastal Carolina and Appalachian State to face off against Texas State in San Marcos to complete the trilogy?
The last game between the two was an absolute battle, with the Bobcats sneaking out of Arlington with a 87-85 triple overtime victory. It won’t be an easy road for Texas State, but if they show up and play their game, they can beat anyone in the conference.
If Texas State wins on Wednesday, they will travel to New Orleans to play in the Smoothie King Center, the new home of former NCAA player of the year and Pelicans rookie, Zion Williamson. It would be a sweet opportunity for redemption for the maroon and gold as they would go up against South Alabama, the team they just lost to in the last game of the regular season.
Following a would-be-redemption victory against South Alabama on Saturday, Mar. 14, the Bobcats would appear in the tournament championship on Sunday, Mar. 15. Who they would play is up in the air but whoever it is, the rest of the Sun Belt should be prepared to face a hungry pack of Bobcats. This tournament is a perfect chance for Pearson to cap off his historic career as a Bobcat on top, as a winner.
If Texas State wants to continue their season into March Madness, their only shot is to be the last team standing in the Sun Belt. If there was any time for Bobcat fans to show out, it would be this Wednesday, Mar. 11. The game will be played here in San Marcos at Strahan Arena at 7 p.m.
Continuous and live coverage of Texas State’s 2020 Sun Belt conference tournament run can also be found on our official Twitter page, @KTSWSports. All games will be broadcasted over the airwaves on KTSW 89.9.
Featured image by Nathan Rarangol.