Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Bracketology 101's Field of 65 - March 11

The Breakdown
This wasn't exactly what teams in "Last Four Land" had in mind. San Diego's upset of Gonzaga in the WCC title game and South Alabama's stunning loss in the Sun Belt semis meant that two at-large teams - VCU and Ohio State - got knocked out of the field, and meant that a handful of other big conference bubble boys slid a little bit further from the dance.

Ohio State fans can at least take comfort in the fact that unlike VCU, their team still has a chance to improve its resume. A win over Michigan State on Friday will put the Buckeyes back in the bracket, and could spell doom for teams like Oregon (if the Ducks don' t beat Wazzu), the Villanova-Syracuse winner if the winner doesn't win a second game (especially if it's Villanova), or UMass, Arkansas, Arizona, or Arizona State depending on their respective conference tourney showings. VCU's chances, meanwhile, are in serious trouble. Their decent but not spectacular resume looked good Sunday night, but it's already two spots worse after Monday's upsets and there are six days of games still left to play.

One team that is probably safe regardless of further chaos is South Alabama. The Jaguars would have locked up a bid with a Sun Belt finals appearance, but losing in the semis on their home floor to Middle Tennessee State makes their future a little more cloudy. In the end, though, their solid RPI (38), their win over Mississippi State (which is looking better and better) and their season sweep of Western Kentucky should be enough to grab an at-large. That's assuming, of course, that there aren't too many more bid stealers or huge upsets.

After Monday's craziness, that might be wishful thinking.

Out This Bracket
Ohio State, VCU

In This Bracket
San Diego, Western Kentucky

Last Four In
South Alabama, Massachusetts, Oregon, Villanova

Last Four Out
Syracuse, Ohio State, VCU, Temple

Next Four Out
Mississippi, New Mexico, Virginia Tech, Maryland


Conference Breakdown
Big East (8), Pac-10 (7), Big XII (6), SEC (5), ACC (4), Big Ten (4), WCC (3), A-10 (2), Colonial (2), C-USA (2), MVC (2), MWC (2)

America East - UMBC

ACC - North Carolina, Duke, Clemson, Miami-FL

Atlantic Sun - Belmont

A-10 - Xavier, Massachusetts

Big East - Georgetown, Louisville, Notre Dame, Connecticut, Marquette, Pittsburgh, West Virginia, Villanova

Big Sky - Portland State

Big South - Winthrop

Big Ten - Wisconsin, Purdue, Michigan State, Indiana

Big 12 - Kansas, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas State, Baylor, Texas A&M

Big West - UC-Santa Barbara

Colonial - George Mason

C-USA - Memphis

Horizon - Butler

Ivy - Cornell

MAAC - Siena

MAC - Kent State

MEAC - Morgan State

MVC - Drake, Illinois State


Northeast - Sacred Heart

Ohio Valley - Austin Peay

Pac-10 - UCLA, Stanford, Washington State, USC, Arizona State, Arizona, Oregon

Patriot - American

SEC - Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Mississippi State, Kentucky, Arkansas

Southern - Davidson

Southland - Stephen F. Austin

Summit - Oral Roberts

Sun Belt - Western Kentucky, South Alabama

SWAC - Alabama State

WAC - New Mexico State

WCC - San Diego, Gonzaga, St. Mary’s


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

The 2s
Kansas, Texas, Georgetown, Duke

The 3s
Wisconsin, Xavier, Louisville, Stanford

The 4s
Notre Dame, Connecticut, Purdue, Drake

The 5s
Michigan State, Indiana, Vanderbilt, Washington State

The 6s
Marquette, USC, Gonzaga, Butler

The 7s
BYU, Clemson, Mississippi State, Pittsburgh

The 8s
Oklahoma, Kansas State, West Virginia, Baylor

The 9s
Miami-FL, Texas A&M, Kentucky, Kent State

The 10s
St. Mary's, UNLV, Illinois State, Davidson

The 11s
Arizona State, Arizona, Arkansas, South Alabama

The 12s
Massachusetts, Oregon, Villanova, San Diego

The 13s
George Mason, Western Kentucky, Oral Roberts, Stephen F. Austin

The 14s
Cornell, New Mexico State, UC-Santa Barbara, Siena

The 15s
Winthrop, Portland State, Belmont, Austin Peay

The 16s
UMBC, American, Morgan State, Sacred Heart (Play-In Game), Alabama State (Play-In Game)

The Bracket
(Bracket courtesy Matt Reeves)

Questions? Comments? E-mail Bracketology 101 at bracketologyblog@yahoo.com


Anonymous said...

with Oregon, that should be 7 from the pac 10

uncle bob said...

By virtue of winning a conference, Sacred Heart (or any other team0 should not be in a play in game. That Should be reserved for the last 2 bubble teams

Anonymous said...

Good idea uncle bob, but it will never happen. It would make bracket pools much more difficult, and the NCAA knows that's a big portion of their viewership for some of the boring games.

Anonymous said...

I think that Oregon has no place... they finished 7th in their conference and lost to the 7th place tema in the BIG 12, Nebraska. I also feel that if IUPUI gets beat by Oral Roberts in the Summit finals then they should have a look at an at-large especially if you are going to include UMASS, whom they beat. Also recall that Oregon lost to the 3rd place team in the Summit (Oakland...).

I think Ohio State, Syracuse, Arizona St, Villanova need to take a backseat this year to the mid-majors. I personally would take Creighton in over all of the above.

Geoff said...

Why does Gonzaga not drop from a 6 seed losing to San Diego?

Anonymous said...

I was looking at bubble teams, and Syracuse is actually looking better all the time. Since I am a Georgetown alum, that pains me to no end to say, but credit where credit is due.

Obviously, wins over Georgetown and Marquette are huge, but they are 9-9 in the Big East, with splits with Nova, G-Town and South Florida (the only teams they played twice) and an OOC that includes wins over Siena (Tournament); Cornell (Tourney); Colgate (in Patriot League finals coming up this Friday v. American)Virginia, Washington & St. Joes. Yes, the URI loss was bad, and they have got to be sick over that away loss to South Florida (they win that game and this conversation would probably not be necessary). But they certainly played a good OOC schedule with the worst teams probably being Northeastern (middle of the Colonial) or E.Tenn.St (#3 team this year in the A-Sun), and did not schedule any of the Dixie St. or Bethune-Cookman's, Eastern Washington's of the world. On the whole, there are not too many bubble teams that are much better. That being said, they certainly need to win the first game, and maybe more in the Big East tourney.

Anonymous said...

Syracuse will be in this year if they take care of 'Nova. The committee is a political body; perhaps less biased than many, but still a victim of its own membership. They will not stick to Boeheim two years in a row, when he is the most influential coach calling for an expansion of the tournament, something that would seriously damage CBS' TV ratings. Syracuse is getting in this year.

Anonymous said...

I'm not Mad or anything I just want some understanding. Is the only possible way memphis will get the overall number 1 seed, is by them goin undefeated? lol It looks like they are going to finish the year with 1 loss under a pretty challenging schedule.
@Uconn,@houston, @uab, NUETRALS VS USC, AUSTIN PEAY At home vs oklahoma, georgetown, Arizona, Uab, houston.
Im just askin would any other team win 30 games under that schedule.

Anonymous said...

I must say compared to NC's schedule it seems Memphis has a right to be mad. They did the best they could, scheduled a ridiculous Out of conference schedule, and thrashed teams in conference. That one loss to Tenn is not a fair way to demote them from the top spot. If they dont get the top spot it's say to say they have to be perfect in order to get respect.

Dan said...

I am genuinely unimpressed by South Alabama's record - the win over Mississippi State looks nice as does the romp through the Sun Belt, but where's the substance?

Bracketology 101 said...

South Alabama is by no means a lock, but as we discussed in today's Breakdown, we think they are worthy of an at-large right now. They have a top 40 RPI, a very good OOC win plus a win over San Diego that looks a lot better now. That's on top of a season sweep of the team that will likely win the league's tourney title - and before losing to MTSU, they had won 22 of 24.

That resume might not be jaw dropping, but compared to the resumes of the big conference bubble teams (who have a lot more chances to boost their resumes than South Alabama does), it stacks up very well. Most mid-major resumes aren't going to be loaded with Top 25 wins, and that's because they rarely get shots at those teams. What the Jaguars have to do now is root for some normalcy to kick in, and hope that nights like Monday night - where two unexpected bids got snatched up - don't happen again.

Anonymous said...

A case needs to be made for IUPUI... this team is 26-7 with two losses to Oral Roberts who we all know can play and also losses @ Marquette and @ Big Sky champs Portland State by a basket. They have already dominated UMass and the biggest thing for me... they never lost a home game. The only bad loss they had was to Centenary... the same Gentlemen team that beat Texas Tech. The Summit gets bad RPI ratings because its bottom teams were bad but the fact remains... the third place team in the Summit beat Oregon who many people have either in their last 4 in or last for out. IUPUI deserves a look.

Anonymous said...

Actually IUPUI lost to Portland St in Alaska not actually in Portland but I get your point. They were very consistent throughout the year minus the Centenary game and it is unfortunate that they do not have 1 other "marquee" win to add to their resume. I personally thing Oral Roberts will stun someone in the first round if they are a 13 seed which I think they will be.