February 24, 2021 0 Comments
The top seed: #1 Indiana Wesleyan
NAIA Locks: Indiana Wesleyan, Marian
NAIA Bubble Teams: Bethel, Saint Francis, Grace
Best chances to win this tournament: Indiana Wesleyan, Marian
Possible sleeper: Grace
Kyle Mangas 6’4 – Indiana Wesleyan: 30.14ppg, 7.2rpg, 5.21apg, 2.97spg
The Nations leading scorer and the most decorated small college basketball player maybe ever. The reigning NAIA DII Player of the Year, and the soon to be 2021 NAIA National Player of the Year. He will look to add to his legacy this postseason with two more titles.
Cameron Wolter 6’8 – Marian: 21.4ppg, 9.23rpg, 3.2apg
Cameron has been a beast for Marian this season, nearly averaging a double-double. Him and Seth Maxwell are the best bigs in the Crossroads League. Wolter will have a chance to return for an extra year if he wants, but if not, we know he will look to go out swinging in his final Crossroads League Tournament.
TreVion Crews 6’0 – Bethel: 24.4ppg, 5.1rpg, 4.93apg, 1.93spg
6th in the NAIA in scoring. He has had some incredible performances, over his career, but even more so this season. The injuries have piled up a bit for Bethel, but Crews continues to be incredible despite defenses zeroed in on him.
Seth Maxwell 7’0 – Indiana Wesleyan: 17.45ppg, 7.8rpg, 2.97bpg
Seth is playing some great basketball this year. He and Mangas have great chemistry together and Mangas knows how to find Seth in scoring spots at the rim. Seth is versatile and skilled and can beat you on the perimeter or at the rim.
#1 Indiana Wesleyan – The best team in the country, with the best player in the country. Add in 7’0 big man Seth Maxwell and a bunch of guys who play their role and you have the team that is the favorite to win the NAIA National Title. They have won 50 straight at home, get to host the entire CL Tournament, and will play 1 game on their home court to go to Kansas City for the Sweet 16.
#2 Marian – They have won 10 straight coming in, but haven’t been able to stop IWU this year yet. Led by the duo of Cameron Wolter and Christian Stewart this Marian team I am sure would love one, or two, more shots at IWU.
#5 Grace – They gave IWU their only loss of the season, have played Marian tough twice, and have been in dogfights all season long. 1 or 2 possessions here and there and they could be the 3 seed in the Crossroads League.
7:00 pm — #1 IWU vs #8 TU (at IWU) — Video
Indian Wesleyan 2-0
Indiana Wesleyan is #1 in the country and have won 50 straight at home. Hard to think they drop this one.
7:00 pm — #2 MU vs #7 HU (at MU) — Video
Season series tied 1-1. Marian did win at Huntington by 20 eleven days ago.
Marian has won 10 straight headed into the CL Tourney. Starting to play their best basketball of the season. We will see if Kory Alford and his the Foresters have some magic left in them this season!
7:00 pm — #3 BU vs #6 MVNU (at BU) — Video
Even though Bethel is 2-0 against MVNU this season, the Pilots come into this matchup losing 6 of their last 8 contests. MVNU has lost 2 in a row coming in, but they were to #1 Indiana Wesleyan and #13 Marian. Bethel is still a bubble team and probably a favorite to get an at-large right now, but a loss in the 1st round would definitely make them feel a bit uneasy until the selection show.
7:00 pm — #4 USF vs #5 GRA (at USF) — Video
Season series tied 1-1
This game is HUGE for both teams. If the Crossroads League does manage to get four teams into the NAIA National Tournament, it will probably be the winner of this game. Both regular season games were decided by no more than 4 points. This should be one of the best games on the slate!
– Since 2010, and before the NAIA became one division, the Crossroads League won FIVE NAIA DII National Titles.
– The Crossroads league is a (2) bid league. The Regular Season Champion: Indiana Wesleyan and the Tournament Champion or Marian if IWU wins both.
– Best Opening Round Matchup: #4 Saint Francis vs #5 Grace.
Our Pick To Win It: Indiana Wesleyan – We aren’t that dumb…no need to think they lose at home!
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