Weekend Slate: Regionals Finale, MLU Week 3, AUDL Week 5

What a weekend queue’d up. After this weekend, we should know our College Championships field and a lot more about who is likely to be in the mix at the end of the Pro seasons.

MLU

  • DC Current (0-2) @ PHI Spinners (2-0)
  • BOS Whitecaps (2-0) @ NY Rumble (0-2)
  • SEA Rainmakers (2-0) @ SF Dogfish (2-0)
  • POR Stags (0-3) @ VAN Nighthawks (1-2)

The Current and Rumble will both look to keep the East from being a two man race. Neither has looked out of their depth this year and a few adjustments or breaks their way could be all they need. In the West, Seattle and SF, both missing key roster players, square off in a game that will decide the West’s lead all the same. The Stags are in dire straits and need to get one in the win column.

AUDL

  • MAD Radicals (2-1) @ MIN Wind Chill (1-2) (Friday)
  • DET Mechanix (2-1) @ MIN Wind Chill (1-2)
  • NY Empire (1-1) @ DC Breeze (1-1)
  • TOR Rush (4-0) @ NJ Hammerheads (1-1)
  • WC Wildfire (3-1) @ IND Alleycats (1-2)
  • PHI Phoenix (1-1) @ DC Breeze (1-1) (Sunday)
  • DET Mechanix (2-1) @ CIN Revolution (1-3) (Sunday)
  • ROC Dragons (0-4) @ NJ Hammerheads (1-1) (Sunday)

The East division of the AUDL could see some separation after this weekend. Currently, only the Rush and Dragons have differentiated themselves (by record). The Phoenix and Empire can compare themselves against the Breeze. In the West, Detroit has a big weekend on tap, and coming away with a win in their two games would be pretty big. The Wind Chill are in a similar situation.

USAU College Series

Women’s

Check out FFH’s full Regional previews for all the good stuff!

  • New England Regionals is Tufts’s to lose, but they have a second bid… and therein lies the rub. Northeastern and Dartmouth look like the top candidates to make their way to Madison. Rebecca Ginsburg and Shelby Parton will need to be playmakers for Northeastern and Dartmouth will be hoping a travel-heavy schedule to see strong competition will pay off when it counts. I’m curious if Tufts can match Ohio State’s dominance. Apologies for not getting a full preview up in time!
  • A crazy five bids will be won in Cedar Falls, IA at North Central Regionals, but they have five very strong teams at the top. What order they fall in will be curious. Should Iowa, Carleton, or Iowa State win, they could be in line for a #1 seed at the College Championships. Expect a slugfest.
  • Northwest Regionals will field a strong group of teams aiming at four bids. Oregon and British Columbia are the top two, but returning National Champ Washington and upstart Victoria don’t want to be left out. Another “how will they finish?” case for the weekend.
  • A brutal 7 team round robin format is in play at Southeast Regionals after their postponement cost them three teams. With two bids up in the air and a hungry trio of teams, plus some darkhorse candidates, added to roster and possible weather variability, there is bound to be some drama in Tupelo, MS.
  • The mighty Southwest Region is a bit bid-strapped this year, with Southwest Regionals only sending two teams to the big show. Santa Barbara is a favorite, but after that, it could get messy. A wide range of teams will be scratching and clawing to make their impact in a Region that typically has high expectations across the board.

Open

  • New England Regionals features three top contenders battling for a pair of spots, and interesting storylines throughout. Dartmouth is undefeated against regional opponents, which could prove their trump card, but Tufts and Harvard have been stronger against out of region competition. A few dark horse teams have what it takes to upset someone. I may be biased, but I’m calling Harvard to take one of the bids.
  • After being relocated for snow, North Central Regionals plans to settle who will take the three bids to the Championships. It looks pretty clear cut that Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Carleton will be at the top, but we don’t know in what order. Can Luther or Northern Iowa play spoiler? It’ll be an uphill battle and word is that conditions are pretty…well, North Central-y.
  • Southeast Regionals is suffering from their postponement, ending up with an odd 13-team tournament and three bids up for grabs. Who knows what impact it’ll have on teams’ rosters. Mainly, it looks like six teams are in the mix, with UCF, FSU, and UF being the teams to beat.
  • There was a lot of drama about the two-bid Southwest Regionals‘ seeding, but once they are on the field, it doesn’t matter anymore. Arizona is the trendy pick, despite being the 5th seed, but can SDSU validate their twitter whining? Can LPC validate their #2 seed? Is Stanford back? Questions abound, answers incoming.

Weekend Slate: Bloody Sunday (Regionals Pt.1)

Here’s a special update to tell you what we’ve got on tap for tomorrow – who’s in, who’s out – at the Regionals tournaments taking place.

Women’s

  • Metro East Regionals is through PreQuarters. Tomorrow morning, we have Quarters, with: Ottawa vs. SUNY-Buffalo, Cornell vs. Connecticut, Rochester vs. Princeton, NYU vs. Yale. A potential Ottawa/Cornell Semifinal should be exciting, but watch out for Princeton against Rochester.
  • Atlantic Coast Regionals is through PreQuarters. Of the #1 seeds, only North Carolina saw any challenges today. Also, I was right about Duke, wrong about Maryland. Quarters matchups: Virginia vs. Towson, Maryland vs. James Madison, North Carolina vs. Virginia Tech, and UNC-Wilmington vs. Duke.
  • Great Lakes Regionals hasn’t updated scorereporter, but I know both Michigan and Northwestern went undefeated, asserting their dominance. When I looked, scorereporter had Northwester and Michigan both in Pool B, so this is a new development.
  • Ohio Valley Regionals had some upsets, with Penn State beating Carnegie-Mellon and Pool B winding up with three 2-1 teams (Pitt, Case, and Penn). Ohio State was dominant. Quarters are: Ohio State vs. Ohio, Case Western vs. Carnegie-Mellon, Penn State vs. Penn, and Pitt vs. West Virginia.
  • South Central Regionals was an exciting (also cold and rainy) one. In Pool A, Texas smoked Colorado 11-4. Pool B was crazy. Mysterious Missouri State wound up winning the pool, 4-1, with a lot of very close games. Their one loss was to Colorado State, who finished 4th. Wash U and TAMU go 3-2, and make the bracket. Quarters are: Texas vs. Colorado State, Texas A&M vs. Kansas, Colorado. vs Wash U, Missouri State vs. Colorado College. Can Missouri State continue their run all the way to the Final? They’d have to beat Colorado. I had Colorado College as my surprise performer. Lots of opportunity still here. Only one bid available.

Open

  • Atlantic Coast Regionals was a double elim bracket, so there isn’t much left for Sunday. Virginia Tech upset UNC-Wilmington 15-14 in the Semifinal, meaning we will see North Carolina vs. Virginia Tech in the morning. Winner goes to Nationals and will likely be the first team to punch their ticket. Also notable: George Mason, in their first Regionals, knocks out Maryland, 16-15. Maryland is out, losing again on double game to John Hopkins, 17-16. Backdoor Quaters are Virginia vs. James Madison and Appalachian State against UNC-Wilmington.
  • Great Lakes Regionals saw all the top seeds go undefeated, but only one pool go to seed. Quarters tomorrow are: Michigan vs. Indiana/Notre Dame, Eastern Michigan vs. Michigan-B (!), Michigan State vs. Chicago, Northwestern vs. Illinois.
  • Metro East Regionals isn’t fully reported, but all the top seeds go undefeated. Dark horse SUNY-Buffalo loses their first three games and is eliminated. Quarters are: Cornell vs. Syracuse/Queens-Kingston (I think), Princeton vs. SUNY-Albany, NYU vs. Stony Brook/Yale, and Connecticut vs. Rutgers.
  • At Northwest Regionals, Pool A went to seed, while Pool B saw the surprises. Top seed Whitman drops two games, while the fifth team, Boise State, is 3-1. Washington is 4-0. Each team has a pool play game in the morning, except Oregon and Washington, who are in the frontdoor Final. If Whitman struggles against Boise State, they may be eliminated before the backdoor bracket begins.
  • Ohio Valley Regionals saw what we expected: Pittsburgh and Ohio take care of business to get to the Final. Carnegie-Mellon and Kenyon play in a backdoor PreQuarter, with the winner playing Penn State. Ohio State plays St. Joseph’s/Penn, with the winner playing Cincinnati.
  • South Central Regionals had the always exciting double elim bracket, with two bids. The Final is set as Texas and Colorado. Kansas rallies from a first round loss to make backdoor Quarters. They’ll play Texas A&M and Missouri plays North Texas.

There’s plenty to watch tomorrow to see who will be taking their act on the road to Madison.

Weekend Slate: Regionals Begin, MLU and AUDL Week 2

The thrill of Regionals Weekend(s) is (are) here! Not only that, but we’ve got proultimate going on. Let’s look around:

MLU

  • PHI Spinners (1-0) @ NY Rumble (0-1)
  • BOS Whitecaps (1-0) @ DC Current (0-1)
  • POR Stags (0-1) @ SEA Rainmakers (1-0)
  • SF Dogfish (1-0) @ VAN Nighthawks (0-1)
  • VAN Nighthawks (0-1) @ POR Stags (0-1) (Sunday)

All of these teams are still finding their chemistry and their way around the pro fields, save the Spinners. However, Week 1 gave us lots of close games. The DC Current seem like a team with a lot of offensive firepower, but failed to display it against the Spinners. They’ll to correct that. Can someone cover (read: back) Jeff Graham? And Prial too? Vancouver & Portland take on the league’s first back to back, which proved pretty impactful in the AUDL.

AUDL

  • ROC Dragons (0-2) @ PHI Phoenix (0-1)
  • TOR Rush (2-0) @ NY Empire (1-0)
  • DET Mechanix (1-1) @ CIN Revolution (1-1)
  • WC Wildifre (1-1) @ IND Alleycats (1-1)
  • MAD Radicals (1-1) @ MIN Wind Chill (1-1)
  • ROC Dragons (0-2) @ DC Breeze (0-1) (Sunday)
  • CIN Revolution (1-1) @ WC Wildfire (1-1) (Sunday)
  • TOR Rush (2-0) @ NJ Hammerheads (1-0) (Sunday)

The back to back proved to be the Achilles’s heel of the AUDL, claiming three victims and nearly taking down a fourth in Toron’o. The Hammerheards hope to capitalize where the Phoenix faltered. The Madison/Minnesota rivalry continues into the Pros, which should be very exciting. We’ll also get a better look at the Phoenix and Mechanix. The Breeze will look to rebound from a pretty abysmal start, catching a winless Rochester on the backend. That’s one they need to show up for.

USAU College Series

Women’s

For more extensive coverage, check out FFH’s Regional Previews from the home page or by clicking the Region (AC and ME coming soon).

  • Atlantic Coast Regionals is widely regarded as having been “screwed’, with three high quality teams vying for a single bid. #1 seed Virginia has asserted themselves all year, but North Carolina and a peaking UNC-Wilmington team (and Skyd 5 Callahan nominee Claire Chastain) will have other ideas.
  • Metro East Regionals is another one bid region in a region that has historically been dominated by #1 seed Ottawa. However, #2 seed NYU has been building all year for this opportunity, and #3 seed Rochester and #4 seed Cornell see that bid as theirs. This one calls for drama.
  • Great Lakes Regionals continues the one bid trend, but who the favorite is isn’t as clear. Can #1 seed Notre Dame defend their spot, or will traditional powerhouses #2 seed Michigan or #3 seed Northwestern restore order?
  • Ohio Valley Regionals is…no, I’ll let you guess how many bids. Did you say one? You got it! You could probably say the same to #1 seed Ohio State, as dominant a favorite as you’ll find this year. They’ll aim to destroy #2 seed Penn, #3 seed Pitt, and all other comers.
  • Southeast Regionals…was rained (well, lightning’d, actually) out and postponed until next weekend. This could severely impact the strength of the teams and throws things into a bit of chaos. We’ll have more next week. For the record, they have two bids, not just one.
  • South Central Regionals features #1 seed Colorado taking on a bevy of challengers, from up and coming #2 seed Texas A&M, mercurial #3 seed Texas, and underseeded Colorado College. With just the one bid, there’s no room for mistakes in Kansas City.

Open

  • Atlantic Coast Regionals is a two bid tournament with two definite favorites in North Carolina and UNC-Wilmington. They have plenty of teams capable of putting their backs to the wall, like Maryland and Georgetown. Plus, its a double elim bracket!
  • Great Lakes Regionals has plenty of intrigue, with a single bid and cases to be made for a few teams. Most of these teams have something to prove, with nobody having a dominant season. Old blood Michigan looks like the slim favorite here, but is Eastern Michigan for real? Is Michigan State peaking? Has Illinois been hiding? Put up or shut up in Rockford.
  • Metro East Regionals has been the Cornell show, and this is another year where everyone is saying “We’ll get you this time!” Cornell hasn’t exactly blown anyone away, so maybe UConn, NYU, Princeton, SUNY-Buffalo, or Queens-Kingston can finally do it?
  • Northwest Regionals is lead by heavy favorite Oregon Ego, but they have a second bid for everyone to fight over. Whitman and Washington have emerged as the teams to beat for that second bid.
  • Ohio Valley Regionals is pretty much like AC Regionals – two bids, heavy favorite, second favorite, and a few challengers. Pittsburgh is expected to win one and Ohio has been very effective in region. Carnegie-Mellon, Ohio State, Penn State and Cincinnati all see Ohio and see a team they think they can beat.
  • Southeast Regionals has been postponed. Stay tuned.
  • South Central Regionals is a two bid show with three teams everyone has their eye on. Colorado may have separated themselves, but Texas and Texas A&M also have potential to take the bids. Double elim bracket. Side note: For some reason, I like Oklahoma. Wouldn’t be surprised to see them do well.
  • Northwoods Conference Championships are finally happening! Will Minnesota and Carleton even try against each other?

Early Regionals Picture

Regionals is coming. Teams everywhere are preparing for war. They have already earned their place among the contenders, this past weekend and the weekend prior. Forsaking those who will decline bids and consequently the others who will accept them, here’s who earned bids to Regionals:

Atlantic Coast

Open: North Carolina, UNC-Wilmington, Appalachian State, Clemson, South Carolina, NC State, Maryland, Georgetown, George Washington, John Hopkins, Delaware, Virginia, James Madison, Virginia Tech, William & Mary, George Mason

Women’s: UNC-Wilmington, North Carolina, South Carolina, Clemson, Appalachian State, Maryland, Towson, American, Delaware, Georgetown, George Washington, Virginia, Virginia Tech, James Madison, VCU

Great Lakes

Open: Notre Dame, Indiana, Purdue, Kentucky, Illinois, Illinois State, Eastern Illinois, Illinois-Chicago, Chicago, Northwestern, Southern Illinois, Michigan, Michigan State, Eastern Michigan, North Park, Winner of EGL-Dev

Women’s: Notre Dame, Michigan, Michigan State, Purdue, Indiana, Michigan-B, Northwestern, Illinois State, Illinois, Chicago, Loyola-Chicago, Northwestern-B

Metro East

Open: NYU, Princeton, Columbia, Rutgers, SUNY-Stonybrook, Hofstra, Cornell, SUNY-Buffalo, Queens-Kingston, Syracuse, RIT, Cornell-B, Rutgers-B, Connecticut, Yale, Central Connecticut State

Women’s: NYU, Yale, Columbia, Hofstra, Princeton, Central Connecticut St., Rutgers, Ottawa, Rochester, Cornell, SUNY-Buffalo, Syracuse, Cornell-B, TCNJ, Hamilton

New England

Open: Tufts, Harvard, Boston College, Boston University, Northeastern, Massachusetts-Dartmouth, Vermont, New Hampshire, Salem St., Brown, UMass, Williams, Rhode Island, Dartmouth, Tufts-B, Harvard-B

Women’s: Tufts, Northeastern, MIT, Boston College, Harvard, Boston University, Dartmouth, Vermont, Middlebury, New Hampshire, Brown, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Maine

North Central

Open: Wisconsin, UW-Milwaukee, UW-Stevens Point, UW-Eau Claire, Marquette, Luther, Northern Iowa, Iowa St., Nebraska, Iowa, Nebrasksa-Omaha, Wisconsin-B

Northwoods Conference has been postponed once more

Women’s: Wisconsin, UW-Eau Claire, UW-Milwaukee, UW-Stevens Point, Marquette, Iowa St., Iowa, Carleton, Minnesota, Northern Iowa, Nebraska, Luther

Northwest

Open: Whitman, Montana, Washington State, Boise State, Montana State, Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, Victoria, Western Washington, Oregon-B, Washington-B

Women’s: Montana, Oregon, British Columbia, Washington, Victoria, Western Washington, Whitman, Pacific Lutheran

Ohio Valley

Open: Ohio, Cincinnati, Ohio State, Case Western, Dayton, Wright State, Kent St., Pittsburgh, Penn State, Carnegie-Melon, Shippensburg, Penn, St. Joseph’s, Millersville, West Chester, Kenyon

Women’s: Ohio State, Case Western, Ohio, Toledo, Miami (OH), Penn, Carnegie-Melon, Pittsburgh, Penn State, Edinboro, West Virginia, West Chester, Shippensburg

South Central

Open: North Texas, Baylor, Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, Wash U, Kansas St., St. Louis, Central Arkansas, Texas, Texas A&M, Texas St., Texas-B, Colorado, Colorado College, Colorado State

Women’s: Missouri St., Kansas, Wash U, St. Louis, Texas A&M, Texas, TCU, Rice, North Texas, Colorado, Colorado State, Colorado College

Southeast

Open: Alabama, LSU, Tulane, Auburn, Southern Miss, Mississippi St., Central Florida, Florida State, Florida, South Florida, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Tennessee, Kennesaw St., Georgia Southern, Florida-B

Heard Tennessee might be dropping. If this is the case, next in line would be Vanderbilt from Gulf Coast.

Women’s: Vanderbilt, Central Florida, Florida State, Florida, South Florida, Florida State-B, Georgia, Emory, Georgia Tech, Georgia State

Hearing of a couple of teams dropping. South Florida and Georgia Tech may both not be going, and that could also happen to Florida State-B. I expect Tulane and Auburn will join the field (assuming Tennessee declines a bid).

Southwest

Open: Arizona State, Arizona, Stanford, Las Posits, UC-Davis, California, UC-Santa Cruz, Chico State, San Diego State, UC-San Diego, UCLA, UC-Santa Barbara, Azusa Pacific, Pomona, UC-Irvine, Long Beach

Women’s: Arizona State, Stanford, Sonoma State, California, Humboldt, UC-Davis, UC-Santa Barbara, UC-San Diego, UCLA, San Diego State, Claremont, Southern California

This coming weekend will have the Atlantic Coast, Great Lakes, Metro East, Southeast, North Central Women’s, South Central, and Ohio Valley Regionals. Northeast, Southwest, Northeast, and North Central Open are all May 4th & 5th.

Weekend Slate: Conference Championships, Part II

Another week of Conference Championships! Here’s what’s what:

Atlantic Coast

Carolina

Women’s: After weather postponed them, these teams are chomping at the bit. Six spots are up for grabs among the eight teams. UNC-W Seaweed and North Carolina Pleaides will battle for the top spot, but the excitement will come from behind them. Clemson, South Carolina, Appalachian State, and Duke could fall into most any combination.

Metro East

Western New York

Open: #1 seed Cornell, the team that just won’t go away, will once again have to defend their honor against opponents targeting them. #2 seed SUNY-Buffalo is their top challenger, but Cornell won their NEO matchup 13-7. With five bids for these eight teams, there might not be any pressure here, though.

Women’s: #1 seed Ottawa is a heavy favorite, and probably the favorite in the Region, to take one of the six bids available. Cornell and Rochester have solid results, but how about mysterious Syracuse? They’ve played one tournament, where a total of two points were scored against them, although they forfeited a game. Could they make noise?

New England

Greater New England

Women’s: The potential excitement of this one is diminished by the eight team/eight bids love-fest. Seeing how Dartmouth and Vermont stack up is interesting: Dartmouth has played higher level competition but Vermont has seen more Ws; their only common opponent is Texas, who beat Princess Layout 12-11 and Vermont 13-5. Don’t sleep on Brown.

Hudson Valley

Open: Connecticut has made themselves the favorite in this three bid Conference of five teams. Don’t be surprised to see #3 seed Yale perform well. They have some solid wins this season so far.

Northwest

Big Sky

Women’s: There are only three teams here, but a single bid up for grabs. BYU has a 13-7 win over Irvine while Utah lost to that some Irvine squad. Utah lost to PLU by less than Montana did. Otherwise, we don’t know much. One day tournament. Let the drama begin.

Cascadia

Open: Nine teams will vie for five bids in what could be interesting. #1 seed Oregon shouldn’t have trouble, though #2 seed Oregon State took them to double game earlier this year. Oregon State isn’t in the clear, as they lost to #3 seed Victoria earlier this season. It has been a long time since Victoria had seen competitive play, so that may affect their game. #4 seed Washington has had a tough year where they have yet to meet expectations, and #5 seed Western Washington and #6 seed British Columbia are capable squads.

Pacific Coast

Women’s: Last year’s two Championship Finalists, plus two of USAU’s top 10 ranked teams, begin their journey to the Championships. There are five bids for the eight teams here, so only #4 seed Victoria – who some are a bit skeptical of, after great early season results and a quiet second half bolstered their rankings – is really at risk here. Victoria had no trouble with #6 seed Oregon State last time they played (11-2 W), but I expect #5 seed Western Washington to be much improved. Not sure how hard the top three (#1 seed Oregon, #2 seed UBC, and #3 seed Washington) will even go at one another.

Ohio Valley

East Penn

Open: With four bids, #1 seed Penn is a clear favorite, having won their past two tournaments. #2 seed Millersville fell to Penn 11-15 in their last matchup at Millersville’s home tournament Final. They’ll be out for some revenge.

South Central

Rocky Mountain

Women’s: An interesting setup in Boulder, where four teams go straight into a bracket with a backdoor to compete for three bids. It seems really unlikely that anybody besides Colorado-B will be left at home.

Southwest

Desert

Women’s: Out in the Desert (that sounds so epic), just a single bid is at stake for four teams. #1 seed Arizona State is the favorite, with a better record than #2 seed Arizona, and some extra wins vs. common opponents (UCLA, UC-Santa Cruz). #3 seed Northern Arizona holds a head to head win over #4 seed New Mexico.

SoCal

Open: Eight bids, 11 teams. Not a ton of drama.

Weekend Slate: Conference Championship Previews

This weekend differs from most, as Conference Championships kick off the Series all over the country. Some teams bid situations have them looking comfy while some favorites can more or less walk through this tournament. Some Conferences will be dog fights. For some teams, this is their biggest tournament all season, with Regionals being an accomplishment their whole season has been building to. With so much action and so many different setups, here’s a special Weekend Slate talking D-I Conference Championships everywhere.

Note: So I didn’t get to finish this but it soon won’t be relevant so, here’s what I’ve gotten to. For the Southeast Women’s, I’ve down each Conference in detail, so check that from the blog homepage.

Atlantic Coast Region

Carolina

Open: Six out of nine will move on to Regionals, but it is strong group. Anchored by hyper competitive rivals, North Carolina Darkside and UNC-Wilmington Seamen, it stays competitive with Clemson, Appalachian State, NC State, South Carolina, and Duke all battling for the last four spots.

Women’s: Six spots are up for grabs among the seven teams. UNC-W Seaweed and North Carolina Pleaides will battle for the top spot, but the excitement will come from behind them. Clemson, South Carolina, Appalachian State, and Duke could fall into most any combination.

Colonial

Open: Eight teams battle for five bids in what is one of the most competitive Conference Championships year in and year out. Maryland and Georgetown are the favorites, but Delaware and George Washington are creeping on a come up. Will Towson and Hopkins take the fifth spot…or my alma mater, American University come through when it counts?

Women’s: With six bids available, only two of eight will be left out. Maryland is the definite favorite, lead by FFH-fave Sasha Bugler, and George Washington and Towson will both be aiming for the upset. How will Delaware finish a season that started disastrously? How will American hold up?

Virginia

Open: Only a few years ago, Virginia was the favorite of their titular Conference, but now they rest behind Virginia Tech and strong favorite, JMU Hellfish. This could turn out to be one of the least exciting Conference Champies, with five bids and five teams that look above the rest (the aforementioned trio plus William & Mary and George Mason).

Women’s: Virginia Hydra is the heavy favorite, but the battle for second should be interesting. JMU has lost just one game this year – a blowout at the hands of Virginia – but Virginia Tech’s resume is strong as well. The fourth place spot is the final regionals bid, so keep an eye out.

Great Lakes Region

Eastern Great Lakes

Women’s: Six bids are for grabs to Great Lakes Regionals. After an inauspicious start, Michigan ended up with results that make them to the clear favorite. #2 seed Notre Dame, #3 seed Michigan State, and #4 seed Purdue all have notable wins against good teams this season, like Kansas, Wash U, and Florida. They may have the potential to make a move on Michigan.

East Plains

Open: Perhaps due to the crazy weather this year, these teams have seen very little of each other. #1 seed Indiana has a significant head to head win vs. #3 seed Notre Dame, but otherwise, nothing of significance. The top four seeds are definite favorites to take the four bids.

Illinois

Open: Seven of nine will take bids to Regionals, sucking some of the drama out, but nobody wants to be the two left home. Illinois looks to be the heavy favorite, but after that, the next four or five teams could get all sorts of mixed up.

Women’s: Eight teams fighting for six bids, but the top two teams are a cut above the rest. They’ll likely be saving the fireworks for Regionals, but Illinois has put together a strong season – including winning Mardi Gras – that got them the #1 seed over Northwestern. Watch out, as one of these two is a very possible candidate to steal that Great Lakes Nationals bid.

Michigan

Open: With only three bids for the five teams here, this is a Conference tournament with plenty at stake. Michigan finished the season strong and is the favorite as the #1 seed, but Michigan State and Eastern Michigan are both going to bring it. WMU and CMU will be looking for the kind of upset that will impact Regionals greatly.

Metro East

Hudson Valley

Open: With only three bids for five teams – four of which seem strongly in contention – this could end up exciting. #1 seed Connecticut has put up mixed results against solid competition this season, but #4 seed SUNY-Albany has the most momentum coming in. #3 seed Yale took some tough late game losses at NEO, so we will see if they rebound.

Metro New York

Open: Seven teams with only six spots! Drama abound! Top four could all be Regionals relevant and looking to making a splash there, so their fight for seeding will be important. Princeton, Columbia, NYU, and Rutgers are seeded as listed, and Rutgers could be one of the country’s strongest #4 seeds this weekend.

Eastern Metro East

Women’s: There are seven bids in the mix for these ten teams. The top three (Princeton, Columbia, and NYU) have a combined seven losses all season (four of those are NYU’s), so the action among them should be exciting as each eyes a rare chance to go to Nationals. They’ll want to up their odds at Regionals any way they can.

Western New York

Women’s: #1 seed Ottawa is a heavy favorite, and probably the favorite in the Region, to take one of the six bids available. Cornell and Rochester have solid results, but how about mysterious Syracuse? They’ve played one tournament, where a total of two points were scored against them, although they forfeited a game. Could they make noise?

Open: Next weekend!

New England

Metro Boston

Open: Of the seven teams in attendance, only one won’t qualify for Regionals. Every team in this Conference has spent their season racking up wins, but are they prepared for one another? Harvard and Tufts are the 1-2 combo here, but they won’t want to show their hands too heavily before Regionals, where they’ll battle Dartmouth for those Nationals spots.

Women’s: There are…uh…. eight bids for the six teams? #1 seed Tufts is big time top dog, but #2 seed Northeastern and #4 seed Harvard had strong Centex showings, particularly Northeastern. Still, dunno what these teams will bring with Regionals already in their travel plans.

North New England

Open: Three bids, four teams. Means a bracket with a backdoor, so anything could happen! Vermont is the favorite here. Should be fun.

South New England

Open: Four teams, four bids. #1 seed Brown and #3 seed Williams have both been notables this year. Can #2 seed UMass make any waves? Or will everybody take it easy?

Greater New England

Women’s: Next weekend!

North Central

Lake Superior

Open: Eight teams line up to take a shot at five bids, but isn’t it really seven teams for four bids? You gotta like Wisconsin as a lock. UW-Milwaukee seems to be a clear #2, but maybe they can at least push Wisconsin? I can’t see anybody else taking these spots.

Women’s: This Women’s have five bids, like the guys, but nine teams, so maybe it’ll be tougher. Similar to their Open side, they have a clear cut #1 in Wisconsin and a clear cut #2 in Eau Claire. Can Sol upset an inconsistent Bella Donna squad?

Northwoods

Open: Next weekend!

West Plains

Open: I believe all six of these teams are ready to go to Regionals, bids in hand. Northern Iowa may have something to prove, though. They play with a chip on their shoulder. I’ve seen some Iowa State talk on the web. Can they back it up?

West North Central

Women’s: The six bids that some combination of these ten teams won’t be the thing to watch here. Four Nationals-level teams will get a chance to jockey for Regionals seedings. Iowa State, Carleton, Iowa, and Minnesota make this the strong Conference in the country. I’m expecting fireworks.

Northwest

Big Sky

Open: With an 11 team field, it could get ugly in the fight for the five bids. #1 seed Whitman will be tough to beat. #2 seed Washington State’s win over Gonzaga is one of the few in conference matchups we’ve seen so far. There are precious few games at all in most of these teams recorded histories, so it is hard to predict which way any of it will go.

Women’s: Next weekend!

Cascadia

Open: Next weekend!

Pacific

Women’s: Next weekend!

Ohio Valley

Ohio

Open: After the field site flooded, this tournament has been moved, so don’t be surprised to see some drops. Right now, seven bids for 11 teams. With a second bid to Nationals on the line at Regionals, a lot of teams are sensing opportunity. Ohio is a very (perhaps too much so) confident squad, but Ohio State, Dayton, and Cinci are right there. Case Western is coming over a great showing at Chicago Invite, with wins over Michigan State, Oregon State, Iowa, and Missouri. Don’t be surprised if they crash the party.

Women’s: Every team will be given the chance to go to Regionals before even competing here. Ohio State also probably doesn’t fear any of these teams are Regionals, so it is likely they’ll tune up. Case has a win over JMU, but not much else.

Penn

Women’s: There are 10 bids for the eight teams here, so someone gets two bids! Why don’t these Regions have 10 team Regionals like they make the Southeast? Or maybe they do and it just isn’t listed that way? All evidence suggest Pittsburgh Danger to roll through this on their way to Regionals, but Penn State and Carnegie-Melon have put together plenty of Ws in recent tournaments.

East Penn:

Open: With four bids, #1 seed Penn is a clear favorite, having won their past two tournaments. #2 seed Millersville fell to Penn 11-15 in their last matchup at Millersville’s home tournament Final. They’ll be out for some revenge.

West Penn:

Open: The top three look pretty solid to take 3/4 available bids. We will have to watch how the final four teams match up. #4 seed Shippensburg has some solid wins this year – including over #6 seed Indiana (Pennsylviania) – which makes them the favorite for the 4th bid.

 

Open Weekend Slate: Easterns, Terminus, Southerns, Chicago Invite

This is the biggest weekend in the college Ultimate regular season. A number of tournaments take place this weekend, but four stand out. Well, really one huge tournament stands out, but a few others will be worth nothing. Let’s take a look at the upcoming action this weekend, shall we?

Easterns

Collecting much of the top Open talent in Wilmington, Easterns will be the final elite open battle before the series. Some teams are making late adjustments while others are in critical bid situations demanding success.

If any teams have made themselves the frontrunners, it would be this collection of #1 seeds: Oregon, Carleton, Pittsburgh, and Wisconsin. Behind them are a line of teams that could be in the mix, but haven’t distinguished themselves enough from their tier. Tufts is coming off a semis appearance at Stanford Invite, but also has a loss to Harvard and a 6 point loss to Pitt. UNC Darkside came into Stanford with undefeated wins of ACCUC & QCTU, but lost to Pitt and Colorado in Cali. Florida has wins over Pitt and Georgia Tech, but hasn’t faced much elite competition. The same is true of Florida State, who does have wins over Carleton and Stanford, but few other notable results. All four of these teams sit as #2 seeds. The #3 seed group are teams that have the talent to make the bracket in Madison, but haven’t shown us the consistency or elite wins to write them in yet. Minnesota’s only showing was at Pres Day, where they lost only one game (to Arizona) but didn’t see this level of competition. Central Florida, Colorado, and Stanford all have been inconsistent despite talented rosters and high expectations. Ohio is likely to make it at Nationals, but their struggles on Sunday and their lack of depth raises questions.

It is tough to peg games to watch with such a high level of competition, so keep an open eye.

College Terminus

The field here is led by Southeast title contenders, Georgia Tech and Georgia. The region currently holds three bids, but these teams are right behind those and capable of taking a spot come Regionals, and any losses they take this weekend will sting. The other one seeds are UMass, who had some close losses at Warm Up and went undefeated at the Woodside Invite, and LSU, the next team in line in the Southeast. The top Gulf Coast team has solid record and has been competitive with the elite teams they’ve faced, but have yet to get a big win. In Pool A, NC State has yet to really put it together consistently, but their game against Cinci should be a treat: the teams are 1-1 against each other, with those games decided by one and two points. Williams is a dangerous three seed, having started off strong with their Santa Barbara Invite results and showing they can beat strong teams. Alabama is a team I keep feeling will be good, and on paper, I like them, but they never seem to perform to their capability. Wash U is an intriguing four seed, having a great record, and while they have not seen too many strong teams, they definitely seem like someone who could break seed.

Games to watch: Virginia Tech vs. Wash U (8:00 AM), Georgia vs. Williams (10:15 AM), NC State vs. Cincinnati, Alabama vs. Williams (1:45 PM), Massachusetts vs. Delaware (3:30 PM)

Southerns

A few hours away from Terminus, Southerns will bring together a wide variety of teams looking to tune up before the Series and get a sense of where their strengths really lie. Princeton travels to Statesboro as the top seed overall and holding an autobid in the Metro East. They have wins over Connecticut and Georgetown and have only lost three games (UNC-W, Ohio, and by two points to Maryland). James Madison will take the next top seed spot, with a 6-1 record where they only lost to UNC-Wilmington in the Hellfish Bonanza final.. UC-San Diego and UC-Santa Barbara are coming a long way, looking to put together win-filled weekends. Neither has had consistent results from Santa Barbara Invite, Pres Day, and Stanford Open, and would like to test themselves against some new teams. Luther, Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and Minnesota-Duluth will all represent the North Central as one seeds. Luther comes in 5-2, with a win over Iowa, but having only gotten outside for one tourney. Black Cat, conversely, has traveled to a number of tournaments, making a name for themselves at Centex with a win over Arizona. They are led by Kevin Brown and Logan Preuss, who have seen increased attention since being named to the U-23 Open team. Minnesota-Duluth lived the dream last season, stealing a bid to Nationals with a great Regionals run. Nobody really knows what they can do this year, as this will be their first foray outside this spring. Appalachian State is the final one seed. They’ve also shown inconsistency, winning only a game at Queen City Tune Up, but having a stronger Eastern Qualifiers. Their wins over Michigan, Cincinnati, and NC State suggest a capable squad still trying to figure it out. A wild card may be Carleton College GOP, who had a lot of success at D3 Warm Up, the last time we saw them. The rest of the field is a bit of a mish-mash, meaning there could be some surprises. Conditions could have a little wind, but the rain that is expected could have an impact.

Games to Watch: Princeton vs. Chicago, Luther vs. Carleton College GOP, UC-Santa Barbara vs. Georgia Southern, Appalachian State vs. Davidson (12:30 PM)

Chicago Invite

With the weather craziness this season, Chicago Invite is a critical tournament for a number of regional teams. However, headlining the field will be #1 seed Northern Iowa. Currently, they hold a strength bid for the North Central region, as the #11 team in USAU’s rankings. They lost a single game in the one tournament they’ve been to, so people are curious who they are as a team, but they could inherit the position Luther held in the NC and are eager to prove themselves. The #2 seed overall is Missouri, a team UNI beat handily at Huck Finn, but otherwise has a pretty solid record on the season. One of their only four losses on the season comes at the hand of #3 seed overall, North Texas. Like UNI, they have only lost one game (to Texas A&M), but all of their results are from one tournament. The final #1 seeded team is Carnegie-Melon, a team just below the top tier in the Ohio Valley and looking to break through. They are focused team that would love to build the momentum they’ll need going into OV Regionals.

There are some other teams to keep an eye on throughout the field. Eastern Michigan went to Centex as a ranked team holding the Great Lakes strength bid. They struggled mightily, losing their leader James Highsmith to a concussion in the first game, and coming away from Austin with just two wins. A few weeks ago, they’d be a #1 seed, but they’ll slot in as a #3 seed, but expect a team with a chip on its shoulder. Oklahoma is another team whose Centex results warrant notice. Their performance – 5-2 with wins over Georgia Tech, Cal, and Kansas – flew under the radar, even though they went broke seed, going from last to 9th. I wouldn’t be surprised to see them break seed again. Dayton, Iowa, Tennessee, and Iowa State are all teams that could do damage and exceed expectations.

Games to Watch: Missouri vs. Eastern Michigan, Northern Iowa vs. Oklahoma (9:00 AM), Iowa St. vs Eastern Michigan, Tennessee vs. Oklahoma, Dayton vs. Iowa (12:00 PM), North Texas vs. Dayton, Northern Iowa vs. Tennessee (1:30 PM)