MY PROJECTED FIELD OF 68
(changes in italics)
LOCKS (32): Kansas, Villanova, Virginia, Oklahoma, Oregon, Michigan State, Xavier, Miami (FL), North Carolina, Utah, Kentucky, Maryland, West Virginia, Indiana, Duke, Iowa State, Purdue, Texas, California, Texas A+M, Arizona, Dayton, Iowa, Baylor, Wisconsin, Colorado, Providence, Texas Tech, Saint Joseph’s, Wichita State, Seton Hall
AUTOS: Another change to the American Athletic Conference champ. Seriously, this conference tournament is going to be ridiculous. Also, some other changes as the top seeds in confernece tournaments have lost so clearly, they aren’t winning the auto bids. This group will be a revolving door of teams until the tournament begins as upsets happen in conference tournaments.
Teams that have clinched their berth will appear in bold
These are in order, so the last four teams will be playing in the “First Four” in Dayton.
These are in order, so to figure out the first teams out, head to the final team from the AT-LARGE category and look for all the teams behind them.
BUBBLE (26): USC, Oregon State, St. Bonaventure, Pittsburgh, Vanderbilt, South Carolina, Syracuse, VCU, Butler, Temple, Florida, Tulsa, Saint Mary’s, UConn, Michigan, Alabama, San Diego State, Monmouth, Cincinnati, Houston, Gonzaga, George Washington, LSU, BYU, Florida State, Ohio State
ACC (7), Big 12 (7), Pac-12 (7), Big Ten (6), SEC (6), Big East (5), A-10 (4), American (3)
MIDWEST vs. WEST
EAST vs. SOUTH
Vanderbilt at Texas A+M – Win by Vandy locks up their spot in the field.
Ohio State at Michigan State – Buckeyes have to win this one. If not, all hopes rest on winning the Big Ten Tournament.
LSU at Kentucky – LSU is also in must-win mode. A season sweep of UK would be beneficial to their resume.
Syracuse at Florida State – A good ‘ol bubble game. FSU needs this more but Syracuse still isn’t safely in the field by any means.
Pittsburgh at Georgia Tech – Pitt lost to Virginia Tech after beating Duke. Can’t afford another bad loss.
Marquette at Butler – Butler has to win this one. Home game vs. a team not expected to be in the field.
Alabama at Georgia – As quickly as Alabama rose, they have fallen. A loss here probably means a SEC Tournament championship is the only way in.
Iowa State at Kansas – Win by Kansas locks up the top overall seed in the tournament.
Oregon at USC – Win by USC locks up their spot, though it’s in good shape already.
South Carolina at Arkansas – Time for South Carolina to take care of business. Their spot should have been locked up weeks ago.
North Carolina at Duke – UNC’s hopes of a 1 seed ride on this game. Can’t be swept by Duke and expect to get to the top line.
Oregon State at UCLA – If the Beavers don’t trip up here, I’m making them a lock.
Yale at Columbia – A win by Yale clinches the Ivy championship, and their first NCAA berth since 1962.
Florida at Missouri – The Gators are on a slippery slope and if they don’t win this one, they’re out of the field for sure.
Iowa at Michigan – A huge opportunity for Michigan to get a big win. Iowa also is falling fast. They were once a 1 seed and now have fallen to a 6 seed.
VCU at Dayton – Not sure a loss hurts VCU too much but a loss would be huge for them.
Portland at Gonzaga – Looking like Gonzaga is going to need some help to get in the tournament without winning the WCC tourney
SMU at Cincinnati – Great opportunity for Cincy for a big win before the AAC tournament to raise their stock.
UCF at UConn – UConn knows it can’t afford to slip up here.
Next update will come after Sunday’s games. And starting after Tuesday’s games, we’re going daily until Selection Sunday! Questions? Comments? Sound off on my Twitter or Facebook and I’ll answer any questions.