The latest version of NIT-ology has the Huskies as the 32nd and final team invited (although with a fascinating projected opening match: at Florida).
However, that outer-edge-of-the-bubble status emphasizes just how big a victory today in Pullman would be, and how damaging a loss might be.
Anyway, I'm about to board my putt-putt-puttering little prop plane over the mountains and will -- hopefully -- file this afternoon from WSU.
Meanwhile, the scouting report:
WASHINGTON (16-14 OVERALL, 7-10 PAC-10)
AT NO. 23 WASHINGTON STATE (22-7, 10-7)
4:30 p.m., Friel Court, Pullman.
Series: UW leads, 167-97. However, WSU has matched a school record with six straight wins in the series, including 56-52 in the first meeting this season, Jan. 5 in Seattle.
Statistical leaders: For UW, F Jon Brockman, 17.6 ppg and 11.6 rpg; G Venoy Overton, 3.2 apg. For WSU, G Derrick Low, 13.8 ppg, C Aron Baynes, 5.8 ppg, G Taylor Rochestie, 4.6 apg.
Scouting report: The Cougars lead the league in scoring defense (55.4 ppg), while the Huskies are fourth in scoring offense (73 ppg). … WSU also leads the league in turnover margin and has committed a league-low 10.2 tunovers per game. UW leads the Pac-10 in offensive rebounds. … Brockman has a league-high 21 double-doubles, including 17 in his last 21 games. His 347 rebounds are the most at UW since Steve Hawes' school-record 386 in 1971. … UW 7-footer Joe Wolfinger, who didn't get off the bench in the first WSU game, has scored 29 points over his last two games. … UW freshman Justin Holiday (ankle, knee) returned to practice Thursday and is cleared to play. … This is WSU Senior Day, as the home crowd will say goodbye to Low, Kyle Weaver, Robbie Cowgill, Jeremy Cross and Chris Henry. … WSU will establish a home season attendance record today, starting the day 753 spectators short of the current record of 110,206.
Next: Pacific-10 Conference tournament, Wednesday through March 15, Staples Center, Los Angeles.