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January 28, 1:30 PM ET
Chat with Andy Katz

Andy Katz
  (1:28 PM)

Here to chat for a bit.

Matt (Oakland)

Andy, Do you think the Saint Mary's win over Gonzaga is considered a legitimate signature win for the Gaels or another example of league parity for the WCC?

Andy Katz
  (1:35 PM)

Legitimate win for Saint Mary's. There is league parity but at a higher level. USF is much improved as is Santa Clara. The disapointment is actually LMU. Saint Mary's has a real shot to win a game or two again in the NCAAs. Not having a real post presence will hurt its chances to get to the Sweet 16, but the Gaels are no slouch.

Gus (SLC)

Stew Morrill / USU......Your thoughts?

Andy Katz
  (1:36 PM)

I've known Stew for literally 20 years. Great coach. Solid individual. Real hidden gem in the sport. Has never received his due praise. Utah State will get into the NCAAs and be a pest with the possibility to win a game or two.

Ralph (Big Sur, CA)

Are Belmont and Coastal Carolina legit threats to take out a 3 or 4 seed in the tournament?

Andy Katz
  (1:36 PM)

Belmont yes. Coastal Carolina no.

AJ (Chicago)

Thanks for the chat Andy, love the expanded coverage and video you've been doing on ESPN.com lately too.What can we expect to see from Marquette the rest of the year? What BE Tourney seed are they looking at? Is this an NCAA Tourney team, or does the fact that they can't close out wins (Louisville, Notre Dame, UConn) mean they're left out?

Andy Katz
  (1:37 PM)

Thanks.I've lost faith in Marquette's ability to finish off a game. I said this morning on First Take that nine teams will make the NCAA tournament. I'm going to stick with that prediction and that means Marquette and St. John's don't make the cut.

Rob (Cincinnati)

Xavier at Richmond tomorrow. Who ya got?

Andy Katz
  (1:39 PM)

Richmond. Spiders have been erratic at times but this is a must game for Richmond to establish itself as the favorite down the stretch to win the A-10. I do like the Kevin Anderson-Tu Holloway matchup at lead guard.

David (Denver)

AndyTwo preseason top 10 teams have fallen off in Kansas St. and Michigan St and both certainly in danger of missing the tournament going into the final 10-12 game stretch.Which team will make it into the dance, and how much of a boost does each team's name give them in the committee's eyes?

Andy Katz
  (1:40 PM)

The overall pool is weak and ultimately I think both will find a way to be in the Dance. But neither will last long unless there are some drastic changes.

Brad (Gadsden,Alabama)

Andy, Do you think Alabama can win the sec?

Andy Katz
  (1:41 PM)

No. SEC West -- maybe.SEC overall -- no. SEC tournament -- no.

Joe (Minnesota)

Hey Andy, I am a little taken back about the lack of national press for the Gophers this year. Even thoughthey lost Nolan, they are 16-4, 5-3 in the Big Ten. Yet this team is never mentioned withthe other top teams in the conference. Why?

Andy Katz
  (1:44 PM)

I think we've written quite a bit about Minnesota this season. I've done an all-access. We've broken down the Nolen and Mbakwe situations. Minnesota has a shot to do something but it won't be to reach its full potential.

Eric Leisure (Holland, pa)

As of right now, if only two of Penn State, Illinois, and Michigan St get in to the big dance, which two would it be?

Andy Katz
  (1:48 PM)

Michigan State and Illinois.

Steve (Abilene)

Andy, Realistically looking at UK (Kentucky) in comparison to the teams in the current Top 10, and I see the same thing I see with each team. It all depends upon the matchup. When the NCAA tourney seedings are finished, would you agree, that the matchups carry far more weight than all the hype over SOS, RPI, and on and on? Example, Duke is a great team but for UK, I would choose a matchup (assuming I could) with Duke versus a matchup against a burly Pitt? I look up and down the top 10 and there could be a case, based upon matchup where UK could run the table ala Duke in 2010. Your thoughts? The committee has far more say in many of the outcomes by matchup alone is my take (e.g. - UK vs. WV in 2010).

Andy Katz
  (1:53 PM)

I agree with you. That's why it's always a reach when we make predictions without seeing the bracket.

Ken (CA)

Your thoughts on Florida? Are they finally getting it, or are we just waiting for the next heartbreak? How good can they really be by March?

Andy Katz
  (1:54 PM)

The Gators seem to have broken through with the road win at Tennessee and then at Georgia. This Florida team finally gets it has to play at a high level every night. They are sharing the ball better and appear to be more locked in on a particular game.

James (Newport Beach, CA)

Who in the Pac-10 goes to the Big Dance?

Andy Katz
  (2:00 PM)

Arizona and Washington. Unless a third team wins the tournament.

Ronnie (Toledo)

Will Kyrie Irving play again this year?

Andy Katz
  (2:00 PM)

Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski said it is unlikely. But I hesitate to say unequivocally no.

Kayce (Denver)

Historically, the Pit has been a tough place to play especially for the Cougars. If, heaven forbid, BYU loses there this weekend, what does that do to BYU's ranking, their tournament chances, and Jimmer's POY campaign?

Andy Katz
  (2:02 PM)

It knocks BYU back a peg but in a minor way since this is a road game at the Pit. Jimmer can only affect Jimmer's chances to win the POY at this stage.

Andy (Seattle)

Andy, this is weird. Why no mention of Jimmer in the first 15 minutes of your chat? It's a Jimmer nation...

Andy Katz
  (2:02 PM)

I just did.

Josh (Provo)

Why do people continue to say that BYU and Jimmer have not played the same level of competition when their SOS (12) is the best out of anyone in the top 10 including Sullingers OSU (43) and Kembas UCONN (18) ?

Andy Katz
  (2:02 PM)

And for the record, BYU desperately wanted to play in the Jimmy V classic against Syracuse or Kansas but there wasn't a spot for the Cougars.

Chris (Zanesville)

Any love for Thad Matta for COY? I know he has a loaded team, but someone has to keep them working together cohesively.

Andy Katz
  (2:03 PM)

He's in the conversation. I would lean toward Connecticut's Jim Calhoun or Texas' Rick Barnes at this juncture.

Jack (So Cal)

Thoughts on Carolina, they certainly aren't Top-10 material as they were ranked in pre-season. However, they are stringing together some hard earned wins...not pretty, but still...2 ACC road wins already. Are they turning the corner?

Andy Katz
  (2:05 PM)

The win at Miami was huge for Carolina's confidence. The competition for second best is down to Fla State and UNC. I'd lean toward FSU right now.

mark fox (daytona beach, fl.)

will coach k' ever go to coach in nba ever?

Andy Katz
  (2:09 PM)

I would say no. Coach K gets his NBA fix with the Olympics. He will retire at Duke. Thanks for the chat. We will chat again next week.