Which conference is a breeding ground for March Madness upsets? – Missouri Valley Conference, that’s which one.

first_imgGary Rohman/MLS/USA TODAY SportsGary Rohman/MLS/USA TODAY SportsThe Missouri Valley Conference is the little NCAA hoops conference that could.The 10-school conference could send two teams to this year’s tournament — Northern Iowa and Wichita State — and were an Illinois State upset over Northern Iowa in the conference championship game away from possibly sending three teams to the tournament.The two representatives, though, could both make a serious run in this year’s tournament if things break the right way.Gary Rohman/MLS/USA TODAY SportsGary Rohman/MLS/USA TODAY SportsThe Wichita State Shockers became a household-ish name in 2013 when they made a shock (ha!) run to the Final Four, and the team has looked fantastic again this year, going 28-4 and earning a top ten ranking in the USA TODAY Sports Coaches Poll before dropping down to #12. They dropped down in the poll thanks to a stumble in the conference tournament, when they lost to Illinois State in the semifinal.The Shockers did win the regular season MVC title, however, when they beat Northern Iowa at the end of February.Gary Rohman/MLS/USA TODAY SportsGary Rohman/MLS/USA TODAY SportsNorthern Iowa is #11 in the country, and the 30-3 Panthers look like a team poised to win a few games in March. Led by MVC player of the year Seth Tuttle, the team has size and strength, and while their shooting can go cold at times, they’ve found ways to win tough games all year.The rivalry between these two schools has made the MVC one of the most exciting conferences in the country that’s really, really hard to watch on TV. They play differently, as well, making their matchups fun to watch just to take in the contrasting styles. Wichita State often relies on their dynamic backcourt of Fred VanVleet and Ron Baker to penetrate and make things happen on offense. Northern Iowa is more of a grinding team who love to get the ball inside to Tuttle and let him work.Gary Rohman/MLS/USA TODAY SportsGary Rohman/MLS/USA TODAY SportsMaking predictions this early is impossible — with Wichita State’s latest loss, they might see themselves drop down to an 8-seed and a second-round matchup against a #1 seed, surely a calamity for the Shockers.But either of these teams, if they get the right breaks, could make a run. Keep an eye on the Missouri Valley Conference teams this March.last_img read more