There are a ton of teams still in the mix as we hit the last week of February. By a ton, I currently have 22 teams fighting for 8 spots.
We did some blind resumes last week, so this week we’ll compare some teams that you may not think are on the bubble to teams that were squarely on it in 2017.
Team A (2017) – 27-6, RPI: 35, SOS: 159, NSOS: 159, Top 50: 1-2, Top 100: 2-4
Team B (2018) – 27-4, RPI: 37, SOS: 159, NSOS: 181, Q1: 1-0, Q1+Q2: 3-2
Team A was Illinois State, who missed the tournament last year, even with a win over Wichita State.
Team B is St. Mary’s, who has the win at Gonzaga and not much else. The Gaels better win the WCC tourney, because they can get passed.
Team A (2017) – 20-12, RPI: 52, SOS: 47, NSOS: 187, Top 50: 6-8, Top 100: 8-9
Team B (2018) – 18-11, RPI: 43, SOS: 22, NSOS: 90, Q1: 4-7, Q1+Q2: 8-8
Both Team A and Team B is Providence, who was sent to Dayton as one of the last four in last year. Last year, the Friars had three sub-100 losses, and they have hit some potholes again (three Q3/Q4 losses). They do have home wins over Villanova and Xavier, but they aren’t as safe as it may seem.
Top Two Lines:
1 Seeds – Virginia (1), Villanova (2), Xavier (3), Kansas (4)
2 Seeds – UNC (5), Duke (6), Michigan State (7), Auburn (8)
The 1 seeds aren’t much of a debate right now. Let’s focus on UNC’s ridiculous resume. 10 Q1 wins (second to KU), 9 road/neutral Q1+Q2 wins, and the second toughest schedule in the country. They’re ahead of Dook in my eyes.
Last Four In: St. Mary’s, Baylor, Texas, Washington
It’s tough right now. I have Washington in over Louisville, due to their win at Kansas. The Cards’ picked up their best win of the season at Virginia Tech on Saturday, but they need a marquee win.
Next Fourteen: Louisville, Mississippi St., Marquette, Syracuse, Notre Dame, LSU, Utah, UCLA, Georgia, Nebraska, Oregon, W. Kentucky, Boise State, Temple
Let’s talk Nebraska, as they were a hot topic on Twitter after beating Penn State. At 22-9, and 13-5 in the Big 14, you’d think they would be a lock, right?
Not even close. 19 of their 22 wins are Q3/Q4. 277th ranked non-conference schedule. 1-7 on the road against Q1/Q2 opponents. The Huskers don’t have a tournament resume.
To the bracket. Note that some of the smaller conference champion projections will change in the next bracket, as I actually try to predict the 68 teams that will make the tournament.
|Charlotte||1 Virginia (1)||16 FGCU/Texas Southern|
|8 Butler||9 MTSU|
|5 Kentucky||12 Louisiana|
|Boise||4 WVU (16)||13 New Mexico St|
|Detroit||3 Purdue (9)||14 Bucknell|
|6 Nevada||11 Baylor/Washington|
|7 Seton Hall||10 Virginia Tech|
|Dallas||2 Auburn (8)||15 UCSB|
|Pittsburgh||1 Villanova (2)||16 UNC Asheville|
|8 Missouri||9 Miami|
|5 Ohio State||12 Loyola-Chicago|
|Boise||4 Rhode Island (15)||13 Vermont|
|Wichita||3 Tennessee (12)||14 Charleston|
|6 Houston||11 Providence|
|7 Oklahoma||10 Arizona State|
|Charlotte||2 UNC (5)||15 Wagner|
|Nashville||1 Xavier (3)||16 Penn/Hampton|
|8 Texas A&M||9 Florida State|
|5 Clemson||12 S. Dakota State|
|San Diego||4 Texas Tech (14)||13 Buffalo|
|Pittsburgh||3 Cincinnati (10)||14 Rider|
|6 Florida||11 USC|
|7 TCU||10 Alabama|
|Detroit||2 Michigan St (7)||15 Montana|
|Wichita||1 Kansas (4)||16 SF Austin|
|8 Creighton||9 NC State|
|5 Gonzaga||12 Texas/St. Mary’s|
|San Diego||4 Arizona (13)||13 Murray State|
|Dallas||3 Wichita State (11)||14 UNC Greensboro|
|6 Michigan||11 Kansas State|
|7 Arkansas||10 St. Bonaventure|
|Nashville||2 Duke (6)||15 No. Kentucky|