CCAA basketball tournament should be a dandy

Last year the the CCAA instituted a conference tournament to determine its automatic qualifier for the first time. Coaches were pretty much split down the middle as to whether or not they liked it – half did, half didn’t.

On the men’s side many coaches didn’t like the thought of having to play three games in five days before going to the West Regional, especially when the two other conference in the region don’t have a tournament.

Ironically all four top seeds lost to the 5-8 seeds. Those top four didn’t have a whole lot of motivation as all four seemingly had locked up their spots in the region no matter how they fared.

The exact opposite is true this time around. Everyone is playing for something. Traditional powers UC San Diego, Humboldt State and Cal State San Bernardino are playing for their postseason lives.

The lower seeded team from Monterey Bay, San Francisco State and Sonoma State know winning is the only way they can get in.

The only teams that seem to have their ticket punched to the regional are Cal Poly Pomona and Cal State Dominguez Hills. But if one of them can win it they could be in line to host a sub-regional if the NCAA goes to that format.

It should mean some great basketball games coming up. Tuesday’s quarterfinals will be hosted by the highest seeded school. The Cal Poly men and women will both be playing at home, as will the Cal State San Bernardino men.

The semifinals and finals will be at Cal State San Bernardino’s Coussoulis Arena Friday and Saturday.