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February 6, 2014

Chances to Dance Week 13

The ultimate goal for every Division 1 school is to make the NCAA Tournament. For the high-major programs like Seton Hall and Rutgers, they usually have to finish above .500 and be in or near the upper half of the American Athletic Conference or Big East to get an invitation. For the other New Jersey Division 1 schools - Rider, Princeton, Saint Peter's, FDU, and Monmouth winning their conference title is about the only option. NJIT is the lone remaining independent school in the country and does not get a bid. Princeton plays in the Ivy League, which does not have a postseason tournament, so the Tigers must win the conference regular season.

Not reaching the NCAA Tournament does not mean the season is a disappointment. A strong regular season is an accomplishment in itself, and that and/or a good postseason league tournament run, can be used as a springboard for the next season.

Once again this season, NJHoops.com will review and update the status of the eight New Jersey Division 1 schools. We will look at where they're at, how they're playing and the week ahead. The percentages are NJ Hoops estimates on their chances of making the NCAA Tournament. After a banner season three years ago when Princeton and St. Peter's made the tournament, once again this past year the NJ teams were shut out.

The weekly updates will appear on Thursdays. This is after thirteen weeks of action.

Fairleigh Dickinson (8-14) (4-4 in NEC) 15%

The Week Past: Edged by Mount St. Mary's 87-82. 5-foot-11 Sr. Sidney Sanders (Polk State FL JC) led the way with 21 points. Fell to St. Francis PA 83-75. Sanders led all scorers with 30 points on 12-of-22 shooting from the field, dished out a game-high 8 assists, grabbed 5 rebounds and recorded 3 steals.

The Week Ahead: At Wagner Thursday and at Central Connecticut State Saturday.

Where They're At: A good start for the new coach as they have already passed last year's win total. In a three way tie for 5th in the NEC. 3rd in the league in 3 pt fg% at 36.5%.

Monmouth (10-13) (4-8 in MAAC) 10%

The Week Past: Fell at Marist College 75-73. 6-foot-6 Jr. Deon Jones Towson/Sanford School DE) led the Blue & White with 14 points and 8 rebounds. Jones nearly missed his fourth double-double of the season with 14 points and 9 rebounds, to lead three Hawks in double-figures, but Monmouth fell to Iona 89-71.

The Week Ahead: A pair of road games on tap. Play at Fairfield Friday and at St. Peter's Sunday.

Where They're At: Off to a solid start in their new league where they were picked last and are in 8th place. On a three game losing streak

NJIT (9-15) 0%

The Week Past: Lost to UMass Lowell 73-64. 5-foot-11 Fr. Damon Lynn (Union Catholic - NJ Hoops #28 Class of 2013) led all scorers with 23 points

The Week Ahead: Wheelock comes to Newark Thursday and Maine Fort Kent Wednesday.

Where They're At: Seem to be a bit streaky this season and have lost 5 of their last 6. Defense is solid with opponents only shooting 42.8%, 137th nationally.

Princeton (12-5) (0-3 in Ivy League) 1%

The Week Past: Lost to Harvard 82-76 despite a career high 26 from 6-foot-5 Sr. TJ Bray. Lost to Dartmouth 78-69 in overtime. 6-foot-10 Sr. Will Barrett (Central Bucks South PA) tallied a career high 28 with 9 treys.

The Week Ahead: A pair of home Ivy League games. Columbia comes in on Friday and Cornell Saturday.

Where They're At: A brutal start to the Ivy League schedule since it's a one league bid and there already 3 1/2 games back. The schedule does get a little easier but they are in a huge hole.

Rider (12-9) (8-4 in MAAC) 20%

The Week Past: Topped St. Peter's 71-53. 6-foot-5 Sr. Anthony Myles (Poly Tech DE) scored 19 points, making five of six three-pointers. 6-foot-7 Sr. Daniel Stewart (Neumann-Goretti HS PA) compiled 18 points and 9 rebounds to lead Rider to a 73-65 win over Fairfield.

The Week Ahead: Marist comes to Lawrenceville Thursday. Travel to Quinnipiac Saturday.

Where They're At: In three way tie for 3rd in the MAAC with Manhattan and Quinnipiac in the expanded MAAC. 2nd in scoring at 78.4 ppg. 2nd in the nation in 3 point fg%, at 42.2%.

Rutgers (9-14) (3-7 in American Athletic Conference) 10%

The Week Past: 6-foot-6 Sr. JJ Moore (Brentwood, N.Y.) scored a career-high 27 points in a convincing 93-70 victory over Houston. Fell to No. 24 Memphis 101-69. 6-foot-8 Redshirt Jr. Kadeem Jack (Queens, NY) led Rutgers with 12 points.

The Week Ahead: Houston comes to the RAC on Saturday night. Travel to Memphis Tuesday.

Where They're At: After a good win over Houston, were blown out by a tough Memphis team. In a three way tie for 6th place in the 10 team league. Playing at a quicker pace this season, scoring 74.7 ppg, 115th nationally but giving up 77.2 ppg, 316th nationally.

Saint Peter's (7-14) (3-9 in MAAC) 5%

The Week Past: Lost to Rider 71-53. 6-foot-2 Redshirt Jr. Desi Washington (Delaware St/Central Dauphin East PA) paced the Peacocks with 15 points. Failed to take Manhattan 64-49. 6-foot-7 Jr. Marvin Dominique (Fordham / Miramar FL) had 15 points and 9 rebounds.

The Week Ahead: A pair of home games this weekend. Siena comes to Jersey City Friday and Monmouth Sunday.

Where They're At: In a tie for 9th place in the MAAC with Niagara and on a five game losing streak. 326th nationally in scoring at 63.69 ppg. Defense is good as opponents shooting 42.3% 120th nationally.

Seton Hall (13-9) (4-5 in Big East) 15%

The Week Past: Handed Xavier its first loss at the Cintas Center this season 68-60. 6-foot-6 Sr. Fuquan Edwin (Paterson Catholic - NJ Hoops #4 Class of 2010) led four Pirate double-digit scorers with 18 points.

The Week Ahead: At Villanova Friday night. Marquette comes to the Rock Tuesday and St. John's on Thursday.

Where They're At: In 6th place in the new 10 team Big East. On a roller coaster, alternating wins and losses over the last six games. Averaging 75.5 ppg, 79th nationally, but giving up 70.7 ppg, 195th.

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