Jan 21, 2014, 11:54 AM EDT
Since losing to San Diego State, the Kansas Jayhawks have put together a five-game surge that includes victories over its biggest competitors in the Big 12 conference – Oklahoma, Kansas State, Oklahoma State, Iowa State, and Baylor. Two of those (Oklahoma, Iowa State) were on the road. Add in victories over Duke and New Mexico in non-conference play, and KU has notched eight Top 50 RPI victories. That’s two more than Syracuse, four more than Arizona, and three more than Michigan State – the other members of today’s No. 1 seed club. It’s also worth noting that Kansas has played the nation’s toughest schedule and currently sits atop the RPI. That’s a pretty strong profile (despite four losses – all to Top 25 RPI Teams), and the primary reason why the Jayhawks received the No. 4 slot on this week’s seed list (s-curve). When evaluating KU’s overall body of work, it’s pretty strong.
We still have two months to go and several other teams could reach the No. 1 seed line by March. Teams like Florida and Wichita State are building strong resumes, as is San Diego State. And it’s too early to count out Iowa, Michigan, or Wisconsin from the Big Ten title chase. The final contenders will be much more clear by mid-February.
On the flip side, January hasn’t been a good month for teams like Ohio State, Baylor, and North Carolina – or Georgetown for that matter; as the Hoyas are among the First Five OUT today. Through the first third of conference play, the Buckeyes, Bears, and Tar Heels own a combined 4-12 record (in league play). Some of that is due to scheduling and some of it has been inconsistent play. Either way, it would be a good time for those squads to reverse course. By the time we reach mid-February, a seriously sub-par conference record will not be endearing to the Selection Committee.
One of the best things about college basketball is that we never know what will happen. Enjoy the hoops.
UPDATED: January 21, 2014
Teams in CAPS represent the projected AUTOMATIC bid based on current standings with RPI as a tiebreaker for teams with the same number of losses. Exceptions are made for teams that use an abbreviation (UCLA, BYU, etc).
Several new bracketing principles were introduced after last year’s tournament. You can read them for yourself at http://www.ncaa.com. For example: teams from the same conference may now meet before a Regional final, even if fewer than eight teams are selected. The goal is to keep as many teams as possible on their actual seed line.
FIRST FOUR PAIRINGS – Dayton (First Round)
- BYU vs. Arkansas | Midwest Region
- VCU vs. Providence | South Region
- SAVANNAH ST vs. UNC-ASHEVILLE | East Region
- SOUTHERN vs. CHATTANOOGA | South Region
BRACKET PROJECTION …
|WEST – Anaheim||EAST - New York|
|1) ARIZONA||1) SYRACUSE|
|16) SOUTH DAKOTA||16) SAVANNAH ST / NC-ASHEVILLE|
|8) Baylor||8) Xavier|
|9) GONZAGA||9) UCLA|
|5) Duke||5) Oklahoma|
|12) GREEN BAY||12) HARVARD|
|4) Kentucky||4) Michigan|
|13) S.F. AUSTIN||13) MANHATTAN|
|6) Kansas State||6) Memphis|
|11) Stanford||11) Dayton|
|3) SAN DIEGO STATE||3) Iowa State|
|14) UC-IRVINE||14) GEORGIA STATE|
|7) Connecticut||7) Ohio State|
|10) Missouri||10) Florida State|
|2) Wisconsin||2) Villanova|
|15) UTAH VALLEY||15) BOSTON UNIVERSITY|
|SOUTH – Memphis||MIDWEST – Indianapolis|
|1) KANSAS||1) MICHIGAN STATE|
|16) SOUTHERN / CHATTANOOGA||16) ROBERT MORRIS|
|8) Oregon||8) Colorado|
|9) Minnesota||9) New Mexico|
|5) Pittsburgh||5) CREIGHTON|
|12) SOUTHERN MISS||12) BYU / Arkansas|
|4) MASSACHUSETTS||4) CINCINNATI|
|13) TOLEDO||13) MERCER|
|San Antonio||San Antonio|
|6) Louisville||6) Saint Louis|
|11) VCU / Providence||11) North Carolina|
|3) Iowa||3) Oklahoma State|
|14) DELAWARE||14) BELMONT|
|7) Virginia||7) California|
|10) Texas||10) George Washington|
|2) FLORIDA||2) WICHITA STATE|
|15) STONY BROOK||15) NO COLORADO|
NOTES on the BRACKET: Arizona is the overall No. 1 seed followed by Syracuse, Michigan State, and Kansas.
Last Five teams in (at large): Dayton, VCU, Providence, Arkansas, BYU
First Five teams out (at large): SMU, Tennessee, Clemson, Boise State, Georgetown
Next five teams out (at large): Purdue, LSU, Saint Mary’s, Ole Miss, Illinois
Breakdown by Conference …
Big 12 (7): Kansas, Oklahoma State, Baylor, Iowa State, Kansas State, Oklahoma, Texas
Big Ten (6): Michigan State, Michigan, Ohio State, Iowa, Wisconsin, Minnesota
Pac 12 (6): Arizona, Oregon, Colorado, UCLA, California, Stanford
ACC (6): Duke, Syracuse, North Carolina, Florida State, Pittsburgh, Virginia
Atlantic 10 (5): Massachusetts, VCU, Saint Louis, Dayton, Geo Washington
SEC (4): Kentucky, Florida, Missouri, Arkansas
American (4): Louisville, Memphis, Connecticut, Cincinnati
Big East (4): Creighton, Villanova, Xavier, Providence
Mountain West (2): New Mexico, San Diego State
West Coast (2): Gonzaga, BYU
Missouri Valley (1): Wichita State
Conference Automatic Qualifiers … Southern Miss (C-USA), Belmont (Ohio Valley), Georgia State (Sun Belt), Boston University (Patriot), South Dakota (Summit), Green Bay (Horizon), Chattanooga (Southern), Utah Valley (WAC), Manhattan (MAAC), Stephen F. Austin (Southland), Toledo (MAC), Mercer (A-Sun), Harvard (IVY), UC-Irvine (Big West), Delaware (Colonial), Stony Brook (American East), Northern Colorado (Big Sky), Savannah State (MEAC), UNC-Asheville (Big South), Robert Morris (NEC), Southern (SWAC)
Mar 31, 2015, 11:00 PM EDT
San Diego turned to a former player to lead the basketball program.
Mar 31, 2015, 10:00 PM EDT
Head coach Ernie Kent is losing three first-year players after his first season at the helm.
Mar 31, 2015, 8:45 PM EDT
It appears Travis Ford will stay at Oklahoma State for now.
Mar 31, 2015, 7:50 PM EDT
Could Murray State guard Cameron Payne enter the NBA Draft?
Mar 31, 2015, 6:40 PM EDT
UNLV officially loses Rashad Vaughn to the NBA Draft.
Mar 31, 2015, 5:35 PM EDT
Rhode Island landed an impact transfer on Tuesday.
Mar 31, 2015, 4:30 PM EDT
Georgetown takes a major hit with the loss of D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera.
Mar 31, 2015, 3:22 PM EDT
Barry Hinson is not happy about losing the players he brought into the program.
Mar 31, 2015, 2:44 PM EDT
It wasn’t as good as the last two years, but there were still some impressive dunks.
Mar 31, 2015, 1:55 PM EDT
Teams that won the first meeting have won three of the four Final Four/title game rematches, with Duke (1990-91) being the lone exception.
Mar 31, 2015, 1:30 PM EDT
Mickey is the second player from LSU to declare this month.
Mar 31, 2015, 1:19 PM EDT
This is nasty.
Mar 31, 2015, 12:09 PM EDT
Bobby Knight would probably not approve of that.
Mar 31, 2015, 11:42 AM EDT
My advice: Hedge that bet, sir!
Mar 31, 2015, 10:01 AM EDT
Lewis will have some well known suitors this offseason.
Mar 31, 2015, 9:57 AM EDT
Barnes spent the last 17 seasons at Texas.
Mar 30, 2015, 11:10 PM EDT
UConn, Notre Dame, South Carolina and Maryland make up the 2015 women’s Final Four.
Mar 30, 2015, 11:00 PM EDT
Some great names highlight this list.
Mar 30, 2015, 10:24 PM EDT
Williams was the leading scorer and rebounder for the Tigers this season.
Mar 30, 2015, 10:00 PM EDT
Nebraska forward Walter Pitchford is giving up basketball for his senior season.
- Frank Kaminsky, Jahlil Okafor highlight five Wooden Award finalists 3
- 2015 NCAA Tournament All-Second Weekend Team 2
- While a major question remains unanswered, No. 4 North Carolina can be special in 2015-16 3
- Tournament darling R.J. Hunter is heading to the NBA 3
- Texas freshman Myles Turner declares for the NBA Draft 6
- The Final Four is set, and it’s going to be insane 24
- No. 7 Michigan State reaches the Final Four for the seventh time under Izzo 15
- Andrew Harrison’s late free throws send No. 1 Kentucky to the Final Four (88)
- Kentucky responds to Daxter Miles Jr.’s pregame comments (30)
- Updated tournament records: Big Ten teams make up half of Final Four (27)
- The Final Four is set, and it’s going to be insane (24)
- West Virginia freshman on Kentucky: ‘They’re going to be 36-1′ (21)