They've got the look

Updated: March 3, 2006, 6:22 PM ET
By Andy Glockner
Having manned Bubble Watch for the past two seasons, I have been conditioned away from looking at teams in a vacuum and/or looking at them too qualitatively. As such, it was far less important for me to believe a team "looked like an NCAA Tournament team" than to understand whether, at that point of evaluation, they fell within the best 34 candidates for at-large berths.

Tonight's Memphis-UAB game is forcing me, for a night, to break with that type of hard-line objectivity. Forget that the Blazers surged in the final 10 minutes and beat the No. 3 Tigers, 80-74, for their first signature win of the season. More important, there were still five minutes left in the game when I e-mailed Andy Katz and said, "Man, UAB is tough. That is a tournament team."

That to me is the difference in UAB's win and the two huge wins by Florida State and Texas A&M on Wednesday night. I didn't walk from those wins thinking that either the 'Noles or the Aggies had iced a bid, nor that they definitely deserved one because of one marquee W. Tonight, I didn't care whether UAB actually won the game -- I was sure the Blazers should get a bid.