We are one week away from Selection Sunday and the automatic bids are beginning to fall into place. Let’s take a quick look at the teams that have already clinched a spot.
Atlantic Sun: Lipscomb
Big South: Radford
Big Ten: Michigan
Missouri Valley: Loyola-Chicago
Ohio Valley: Murray State
Now is the point in the season where bubble teams will start to pay closer attention conference tournaments.
The Conference USA tournament (March 7-10) is an interesting one to watch as Middle Tennessee is a favorite, but even with a loss, could take an at large bid.
Another tourney to watch is the Mountain West tourney (March 7-10). Nevada is an at-large capable team if they are unable to secure a tournament championship.
In the West Coast Conference, Gonzaga and Saint Mary’s are in today’s bracket meaning a victory by another WCC team could shrink the bubble.
Any of the other multi-bid conferences can also cause problems for bubble teams if a team not expected to make the tourney steals a bid by winning a conference title.
Let’s look at the latest brack8ology.
Final Four: East vs West & Midwest vs South
ALL CAPS/conference indicates an automatic bid
(1) VIRGINIA/ACC vs. (16) LIPSCOMB/Atlantic Sun
(8) Oklahoma vs. (9) Missouri
(5) ARIZONA/Pac-12 vs. (12) NEW MEXICO STATE/WAC
(4) Wichita State vs. (13) MURRAY STATE/Ohio Valley
(3) AUBURN/SEC vs. (14) PENN/Ivy League
(6) Miami vs. (11) Providence/Baylor
(7) Texas A&M vs. (10) Louisville
(2) Michigan State vs. (15) BUCKNELL/Patriot League
- -Virginia remains the top overall seed.
- -Louisville is in the final few spots to receive a bid. The Cardinals are in the mid-30’s in KenPom and even higher on NCAAGameSim.com. A win in the ACC Tournament should be enough if the bubble doesn’t shrink.
- -Providence and Baylor are among the last 4 teams in the bracket. Providence opens up with the Big East tourney with Creighton. That game that could be critical to their tourney chances.
- -Baylor has lost 3 of 4 and was the last at-large team in the bracket.
(1) Xavier vs. (16) COLLEGE OF CHARLESTON/Colonial/PRAIRIE VIEW/SWAC
(8) RHODE ISLAND/Atlantic 10 vs. (9) NC State
(5) Ohio State vs. (12) UL LAFAYETTE/Sun Belt
(4) Clemson vs. (13) SOUTH DAKOTA STATE/Summit
(3) Tennessee vs. (14) BUFFALO/Mid-American
(6) Houston vs. (11) USC
(7) Seton Hall vs. (10) FSU
(2) KANSAS/Big 12 vs. (15) RIDER/MAAC
- -Xavier claims the 3rd overall seed but slid to the 4th spot to keep the ACC and Big East from having possible semi-final matchups in the Final Four.
- -NC State is up to a #9 seed although with 2 ACC #1 seeds and multiple #8/#9 ACC teams, it made for some interesting moving parts to avoid a 2nd round match-up of conference teams.
- -Kansas drops to a #2 seed after a brutal 18 point loss to Oklahoma State.
(1) VILLANOVA/Big East vs. (16) WAGNER/Northeast/BETHUNE-COOKMAN/MEAC
(8) Virginia Tech vs. (9) Kansas State
(5) GONZAGA/WCC vs. (12) LOYOLA-CHICAGO/Missouri Valley
(4) West Virginia vs. (13) NORTHERN KENTUCKY/Horizon
(3) MICHIGAN/Big Ten vs. (14) MONTANA/Big Sky
(6) Florida vs. (11) Texas/UCLA
(7) NEVADA/Mountain West vs. (10) Butler
(2) UNC vs. (15) SFA/Southland
- -Villanova is the 2nd overall seed.
- -Texas is one of the last 4 seeds thanks in large part to a win over West Virginia on Saturday.
- -The Bruins picked up a big win over USC to keep their hopes alive a bit longer.
- -UNC’s 2 loss week wasn’t enough to drop them off the 2 line, even though the Heels finished as the 6th seed in the ACC tournament.
(1) Duke vs. (16) RADFORD/Big South
(8) Creighton vs. (9) Saint Mary’s
(5) Kentucky vs. (12) MIDDLE TENNESSEE/Conference USA
(4) Texas Tech vs. (13) VERMONT/America East
(3) CINCINNATI/AAC vs. (14) UNC GREENSBORO/Southern
(6) TCU vs. (11) St. Bonaventure
(7) Arkansas vs. (10) Arizona State
(2) Purdue vs. (15) UC SANTA BARBARA/Big West
- -Duke’s win over UNC was enough to allow them to hop over Kansas to be the 4th overall #1 seed. Perhaps no other team has been given the benefit of the doubt merely based upon the talent on the roster.
- -Middle Tennessee was higher seeded than a few other #11 seeds, but for play-in purposes, they were moved to a #12 seed.
Last Four In
First Four Out
Next Four Out
Multiple Bid Conferences
Here’s where the fun begins and where we set the Sports Channel 8 bracketology apart from everyone else. You can simulate the bracket above using NCAAGameSim.com. Enjoy!