Wow, what a day/afternoon/night! The buzzer beaters, the overtimes, the comebacks, the great individual performances...that 36-33 game (ugh). Here's a recap of yesterday's events and a quick overview of how we see things with just about 36 hours to go before the Selection Show:
We have been waiting for the bubble teams to make their moves for a few weeks and it just never happened. Better late than never, right? Michigan State, Michigan, Virginia Tech, Alabama, and Richmond (and St. Mary's) all won last night, and in many cases (Michigan, Michigan State, Virginia Tech) the wins look to be bid-clinchers.
The hardest thing for us to do was pick the 37th an final at-large team from a pool of pretty ugly and very smiliar resumes. We said in our Friday notes that if Penn State beat Wisconsin, that they woud "likely" end up on the Last Four In line. The Nittany Lions held up their part of the deal, but as you can see in our bracket, we didn't hold up on our end. Clemson, not Penn State, is the final team in our field, as a result of the Tigers' blowout win over Boston College. The Nittany Lions may still be able to sneak in the field, even with a loss to Michigan State today, but we think they are still just shy of a bid heading into Saturday's action. Depending on how well they play and what Clemson does against UNC, they can get in. Right now, though, they are our last team out.
Big picture-wise, there are five teams in our bracket that we could potentially see getting left out - Alabama, Colorado, St. Mary's, Georgia, or Clemson. The three teams we think that have a chance for an at-large over any of these teams are Penn State, UAB, or USC. Obviously, if a bid- stealer comes out of the WAC or A-10 today, everything changes.
Some other important notes from Friday night:
- The Pac-10 results on Friday were a dream come true for bubble teams.
- There is still the chance for bid stealers out of the A-10 and WAC.
- Bubble teams need to pull for Memphis to beat UTEP.
- With ND losing to Louisville, there is definitely a potential opening on the 1 line. Can Duke get there if Nolan Smith is out? Can BYU climb back up? Those questions will get answered today.
This is our last bracket that will be released before our final Field of 68, which will be posted bracket on Sunday afternoon. We will answer as many questions as we can via Twitter and the comments section today and tomorrow. Enjoy Championship Weekend!
Last Four In
Colorado, St. Mary's, Georgia, Clemson
First Four Out
Penn State, UAB, USC, Boston College
Next Four Out
Memphis, VCU, Missouri State, Harvard
Big East (11), Big XII (6), Big Ten (6), SEC (6), ACC (5), A-10 (3), MWC (3), Pac-10 (3), Colonial (2), WCC (2)
America East - Boston University
ACC - Duke, North Carolina, Florida State, Virginia Tech, Clemson
Atlantic Sun - Belmont
A-10 - Xavier, Temple, Richmond
Big East - Pittsburgh, Notre Dame, Louisville, Syracuse, Connecticut, St. John's, West Virginia, Georgetown, Cincinnati, Marquette, Villanova
Big Sky - Northern Colorado
Big South - UNC-Asheville
Big Ten - Ohio State, Purdue, Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan, Michigan State
Big XII - Kansas, Texas, Texas A&M, Kansas State, Missouri, Colorado
Big West - Long Beach State
Colonial - Old Dominion, George Mason
Conference USA - UTEP
Horizon - Butler
Ivy - Princeton
MAAC - St. Peter's
MAC - Kent State
MEAC - Morgan State
MVC - Indiana State
MWC - BYU, San Diego State, UNLV
Northeast - Long Island
Ohio Valley - Morehead State
Pac-10 - Arizona, UCLA, Washington
Patriot - Bucknell
SEC - Florida, Kentucky, Vanderbilt, Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia
Southern - Wofford
Southland - McNeese State
Summit - Oakland
Sun Belt - Arkansas-Little Rock
SWAC - Alabama State
WAC - Utah State
WCC - Gonzaga, St. Mary's
Ohio State, Kansas, Pittsburgh, Notre Dame
Duke, BYU, North Carolina, Florida
Louisville, San Diego State, Texas, Syracuse
Connecticut, Kentucky, Wisconsin, Purdue
Arizona, St. John's, West Virginia, Georgetown
Temple, Cincinnati, Texas A&M, Vanderbilt
Xavier, Kansas State, Old Dominion, UNLV
Utah State, UCLA, George Mason, Tennessee
Missouri, Marquette, Gonzaga, Illinois
Washington, Butler, Michigan, Villanova
Michigan State, Florida State, Richmond, Virginia Tech
Alabama, Colorado vs. St. Mary's (FF), Georgia vs. Clemson (FF), UTEP
Belmont, Princeton, Oakland, Kent State
Bucknell, Indiana State, St. Peter's, Wofford
Morehead State, Long Beach State, Long Island, Northern Colorado
Boston University, UNC-Asheville, Morgan State vs. McNeese State (FF), Arkansas-Little Rock vs. Alabama State (FF)
(Bracket courtesy Matt Reeves)
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