1. If Bruce Weber has coached his last game at Assembly Hall in Champaign then the Illini fans should find time to give him the praise he deserves for putting everything he had into the job. Weber won’t have to work after getting a $3.9 million buyout, but he could be a huge help to Chris Lowery at Southern Illinois if the Salukis can’t afford to push Lowery out in Carbondale. Weber’s ego is in check enough to help a friend, rather than think he’s too good for such a task.
2. Virginia should be safe, but it’s hard not to look at the Cavaliers and see a team that is in a tenuous situation. The Cavaliers couldn’t close out Florida State Thursday night at home as Ian Miller hit a 3-pointer with less than a second left. Virginia has lost four of six games and closes out at Maryland. Lose that game and fall in the first game of the ACC tournament and the Cavaliers may give the selection committee pause. The Cavaliers have had injuries yet again and are a tourney-worthy team for 38-39 minutes, but haven’t been able to close out the better teams in the ACC.
3. The C-USA/MWC merger needs teams and the first one on the list was going to be Temple, according to East Carolina athletic director Terry Holland. But the Owls, which would have likely been only a football member, are likely headed toward the Big East. The merger is about football, but Marshall and East Carolina desperately need a team in the Eastern Time Zone and the natural choice is Charlotte for all sports with the assumption that the startup football program can be ready to compete in the near future.