In Rick Majerus’s fifth year as the Saint Louis Billikens’ head coach and chief purveyor of credibility the NCAA Tournament is finally in sight—only the No. 8 Memphis Tigers stand between No. 9 SLU and its first March Madness win since 1998.
That’s just one team, but it is a lot to deal with. The Tigers, one of the most consistent teams in college basketball, have been strong ever since they hired their own credibility-enhancer, John Calipari, back in 2000; they’ve played in eight of the last 10 tournaments, and gotten as far as the national championship game while doing it. The Billikens were 12-19 as recently as last year; Majerus’s tenure hasn’t borne real fruit until this moment.
This could make or break the long-time Utah coach’s tenure at SLU—his contract is for six years, but if he’s able to turn them into a perennial tournament contender he shouldn’t have much trouble staying on with a team that hasn’t answered to that description since the mid-90s.
More SB Nation St. Louis March Madness coverage: Friday’s schedule and a complete list of radio streams await those of you unfortunate enough to be following along from a room that doesn’t have six TVs in it.