Friday, October 12, 2007

B101's Bold Prediction No. 1

No. 1: The Bracket - Preseason Edition
Over the years, we have shied away from putting together a preseason bracket, only because preseason brackets - like preseason polls when they eventually come out - won't end up meaning jack in a few weeks. Our first bracket of the year has traditionally come out after a couple of weeks of games - usually in mid-to-late November...well, until now. After years of holding out, we decided to give the readers what they have e-mailed us about and wanted for three years now - a preseason bracket. We made it our Bold Prediction No.1 for the 2007-2008 college basketball season.

Here it is: B101's Preseason Field of 65:

Conference Breakdown
ACC (7), Big East (7), Pac-10 (7), SEC (6), Big XII (5), Big Ten (4), A-10 (2), Colonial (2), MVC (2), WAC (2)

Last Four In
Florida State, Missouri, California, Auburn

Last Four Out
Providence, Illinois, Vanderbilt, Houston

The Seeds
The 1s
UCLA, North Carolina, Memphis, Kansas

The 2s
Georgetown, Louisville, Tennessee, Indiana

The 3s
Michigan State, Washington State, Duke, Kentucky

The 4s
Marquette, Oregon, USC, North Carolina State

The 5s
Gonzaga, Texas, Arkansas, Southern Illinois

The 6s
Xavier, Arizona, Clemson, Texas A&M

The 7s
Ohio State, Connecticut, Butler, Stanford

The 8s
Virginia, Pittsburgh, Florida, Syracuse

The 9s
Wisconsin, Davidson, Mississippi State, Kansas State

The 10s
Maryland, Villanova, VCU, BYU

The 11s
Auburn, California, Missouri, New Mexico State

The 12s
George Mason, Bradley, Florida State, St. Joseph’s

The 13s
Utah State, Winthrop (Big South), Akron (MAC), Holy Cross (Patriot)

The 14s
Vermont (America East), Austin Peay (Ohio Valley), Western Kentucky (Sun Belt), UC-Santa Barbara (Big West)

The 15s
Siena (MAAC), Montana (Big Sky), Texas A&M-CC (Southland), IUPUI (Summit)

The 16s
Sacred Heart (Northeast), Cornell (Ivy), East Tennessee State (Atlantic Sun), Delaware State (MEAC, Play-In Game), Arkansas-Pine Bluff (SWAC, Play-In Game)

The Bracket
(Bracket courtesy Matt Reeves)

Questions? Comments? E-mail Bracketology 101 at


Andrew said...

Not sure if this news affects your St. Joe's prediction:

Rivera to miss 1st semester

Xavier is clearly the class of the A-10, and I think the conference is much improved, but I'm not sure I would take St. Joe over GW or U.Mass -- or even St. Louis -- for that second spot.

Bracketology 101 said...

Rivera's first semester academic ineligibility certainly isn't good news for St. Joseph's, but it's far from disastrous. He played well off the bench at times last year, but he also went scoreless (or almost scoreless) in nights when he played 15-20 minutes way too often.

As far as the A-10 goes, you're right - any number of teams could finish second. We still give the Hawks a slight edge over UMass, Rhode Island, GW, and our sleeper, Duquesne, based on the talent they return, but their hold on that second spot is by no means safe. What does look safe is that the A-10 is shaping up to be a multiple bid league, and because of that, we'll continue to hold two spots for them in our bracket.

Anonymous said...

Auburn lost Dollard for the year to what is being publicly called a medical leave of absence, no way they make the NCAAs this year.

Bracketology 101 said...

The loss of Dollard for the year(and to a much lesser extent the loss of Quan Powell for the first five games of the season) are crushing blows to the Tigers' NCAA hopes. Jeff Lebo has already said publicly that he has no idea how Auburn will replace Dollard's team-leading 12.5 points and seven rebounds per game. The Tigers were thin inside as it is, and without Dollard they have almost zero experience left on the interior.

It's too late to remove Auburn from our preseason bracket, but don't expect the Tigers to be in our first regular season bracket when it comes out in late November.

Tom Lewis said...

UAB has a chance to make the tourney as CUSA will have more than 1 team this year

Bracketology 101 said...

We considered both Houston and UAB as at-large bids out of C-USA, but in the end both had too many question marks to be included in our preseason field. UAB certainly has NCAA tourney talent, but most of that talent is transfer talent. It may take a while for all of the team's new pieces to blend, and unfortunately the Blazers won't have a lot of time to gel with the slate of tough OOC tests they have to start the year (at Florida State, at Rhode Island, at Kentucky, at Wichita State). If they could ever win some or most of those games, than many people, including us, may start to reconsider C-USA's one-bid status. Right now, though, we'll stick with Memphis and Memphis only.

Anonymous said...

In most preseason brackets I see Stanford listed anywhere from 5 to 9. You have them right in the middle at 7. I just want to know where you think this team is going to lose a lot of games? They nonconference schedule is fairly easy and I wouldnt be surprised if they went 12-0. Then you would have to believe a Pac-10 at-large team will be 11-7 or better in conference giving the Cardinal around 23 wins. Will their nonconference SOS hurt their seed that bad?...Or will they lose more games I do not see? Thanks and good job on the preseason bracket!

Bracketology 101 said...

Stanford's seed is really based on two factors - the strength of the Pac-10 and the weakness of the Cardinal's OOC schedule. There are four teams (UCLA, Washington State, Oregon, and USC) that we think are clearly better than Stanford as the season opens. At best, Stanford is the fifth best team in the conference, and we think they're the sixth best squad behind the Big Four and Arizona. A sixth place team in any league is not going to be a top-5 seed and in Stanford's case, they certainly won't, since at the end of the year, they almost certainly won't have a non-conference win against an NCAA tournament team. Don't worry: Stanford will ultimately make the dance, but it probably won't be at a seed line very much higher than what we have them at right now.