Tournament Picture

These teams are locks to play in the NCAA tournament:

AAC (1) – Cincinnati

ACC (6) – Duke, Florida State, UNC, Louisville, Virginia, Notre Dame

Big XII (3) – Kansas, Baylor, West Virginia

Big East (3) – Villanova, Creighton, Butler

SEC (2) – Kentucky, Florida

Pac-12 (3) – UCLA, Oregon, Arizona

Others (1) – Gonzaga

These teams should make the tournament, but aren’t locks:

AAC (1) – SMU

Big East (1) – Xavier

Big Ten (3) – Wisconsin, Maryland, Purdue

SEC (1) – South Carolina

These teams are on the bubble:

A-10 (4) – VCU (lacking in quality wins, and the home loss to Georgia Tech isn’t great), Dayton (the lack of quality wins could do them in), Rhode Island (no bad losses and a neutral court win over Cincinnati help), LaSalle (a long shot that needs to be almost perfect from here on out)

AAC (1) – Houston (there likely isn’t enough heft to make it)

ACC (7) – Virginia Tech (the lack of bad losses and number of good wins will likely be enough), Clemson (lots of solid wins over other bubble contenders, but their atrocious ACC start may derail their bid), Miami (they keep doing enough to stay on the radar, but haven’t made a strong push), Wake Forest (lack quality wins, but greatly benefit from exceptional computer numbers), Pitt (is going to be headed for the cut line with a mediocre resume), NC State (a strong schedule, but ACC play has been a disaster), Georgia Tech (the OOC portion of the schedule will likely prevent a bid)

Big XII (5) – Kansas State (faces a tough climb because of a very weak non-conference slate), Texas Tech (a very poor out of league schedule means they need lots of good wins and stop losing to bubble teams at home), TCU (lacks marquee wins, but has avoided damaging losses), Oklahoma State (needs to start beating top 50 teams), Iowa State (has a solid profile that should only get better)

Big East (3) – Seton Hall (has some decent wins out of conference and no bad losses), Marquette (may regret playing so many RPI 200+ teams, but greatly benefit from the win at Creighton), Providence (needs good road wins to overcome a couple bad losses)

Big Ten (7) – Michigan (has a middling profile that should put them near the cut line), Indiana (will probably make the field despite way too many games against RPI 200+ teams), Illinois (has a decent profile, but may be done in by the home loss to Winthrop and too many losses to other bubble teams), Northwestern (has no bad losses and will likely have their first tournament appearance upcoming), Nebraska (has pretty much ruined an excellent non-conference schedule and a good start to conference play; hanging by a thread), Michigan State (will likely be dancing with a solid seed despite early hiccups), Minnesota (is a solid tournament bet)

Pac-12 (4) – Utah (is barely hanging on the bubble with an awful OOC slate and a neutral loss to San Francisco), Stanford (has decent numbers but a serious lack of good wins), USC (has an important win over SMU at home and solid RPI numbers), California (has a very nice win at USC, but not too much else)

SEC (5) – Vanderbilt (is only under consideration because of a great OOC schedule and a win at Florida), Georgia (has an unremarkable, but decent profile), Arkansas (has a home loss to Mississippi State and a lack of great wins, but their numbers are solid), Ole Miss (has a great non-league slate but no great wins), Tennessee (the Vols are within striking range, but are lacking noteworthy achievements)

Others (3) – St. Mary’s (should be fine if they avoid bad losses), UNC-Wilmington (needs to hope for a run by St. Bonaventure and no losses before the tournament final), Middle Tennessee (has some good wins that they hope will overcome a home loss to Georgia State)

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