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LeCrone expects Horizon League expansion within two years

2013-03-09T21:00:00Z 2013-03-10T00:52:11Z LeCrone expects Horizon League expansion within two yearsPaul Oren Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
March 09, 2013 9:00 pm  • 

VALPARAISO | Horizon League commissioner Jon LeCrone addressed a variety of topics at the annual Horizon League “state of the league” address, including the much-anticipated conference expansion.

The Horizon League fell to nine teams when Butler left last summer and LeCrone anticipates that the conference will find a replacement within the next two years. The longtime commissioner doesn’t anticipate any schools will leave the conference.

“The probability of our nine schools staying intact is very high,” LeCrone said. “I see that number growing.”

LeCrone outlined his belief that the recent influx of conference movement will continue, with more moves occurring in the coming months.

“I think there will be a lot of change coming between now and the Final Four,” LeCrone said. “The landscape is going to shape what opportunities might be there for us. You want to be measured and you want to be thoughtful. We’re just going to have to be patient.”

Never satisfied: Wright State coach Billy Donlon hasn’t made a big deal about the Raiders getting picked to finish last this season – until Saturday morning.

Donlon brought the topic up with his team following a morning practice and if the Raiders make it to the NCAA tournament, the country will undoubtedly hear plenty of stories about the team that went from worst-to-first.

“I talked about it with the guys today because I felt some of them were satisfied with beating Youngstown last night,” Donlon said. “Some of the guys that were here last year were happy to win 20 games, to win a tournament game. Demand more of yourself.”

Second-seed blues: The Titans became the third No. 2 seed to lose in the semifinals in the last five years on Saturday night and the second straight at the Athletics-Recreation Center.

Cleveland State lost to No. 3 Detroit in the semifinals last season and Green Bay lost to the Vikings in 2008-09. The Horizon League moved to the double-bye format in 2003-04 and four No. 2 seeds have lost in the semifinals since the format change.

“This was our first time earning a double-bye and we had a goal of going back-to-back to the NCAA tournament,” Detroit coach Ray McCallum said. “We’ve got two First Team all-conference players, who are worthy, who did not get it going today, and it’s tough for us to win when that happens.”

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