Jan 21, 2014, 11:54 AM EST
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)
Nov 20, 2014, 4:58 PM EST
Arizona, Michigan State and Providence all reached last season’s NCAA tournament.
Nov 20, 2014, 3:32 PM EST
Who is the most clutch player in the country?
Nov 20, 2014, 2:37 PM EST
The 2014 Maui Invitational kicks off on Monday.
Nov 20, 2014, 1:57 PM EST
I cannot respect your intelligence if you think Kentucky beats Philly. I just can’t do it.
Nov 20, 2014, 1:29 PM EST
The last two years, Wichita State, UConn and Kentucky have all made the Final Four as teams seeded outside the top six.
Nov 20, 2014, 12:45 PM EST
You have to love early morning basketball.
Nov 20, 2014, 12:30 PM EST
Sad: One of the sport’s most notorious coaches is struggling with his health.
Nov 20, 2014, 11:50 AM EST
All of today’s college hoops action.
Nov 20, 2014, 11:05 AM EST
There’s more to Shaka Smart than meets the eye.
Nov 20, 2014, 10:32 AM EST
Will we ever see Butler’s head coach on the sideline again?
Nov 20, 2014, 1:05 AM EST
It was a quiet night on the college hoops front, but one ranked team went down.
Nov 20, 2014, 12:53 AM EST
Rondae Hollis-Jefferson was the spark plug for a team that has a lot of progress to make offensively.
Nov 19, 2014, 11:37 PM EST
Jakeenan Gant has yet to play in a game for Missouri.
Nov 19, 2014, 10:42 PM EST
Now that is hops.
Nov 19, 2014, 10:37 PM EST
This is a huge win for Creighton and for the Big East as a whole.
Nov 19, 2014, 9:22 PM EST
Come on, Toby.
Nov 19, 2014, 8:57 PM EST
Apologies won’t get Tom Crean off the hot seat, but at least they acknowledged their mistakes.
Nov 19, 2014, 5:48 PM EST
Derek Ogbeide’s been praised for his ability as a defender and rebounder, areas Georgia will need to address with two of their front court mainstays being seniors.
Nov 19, 2014, 4:33 PM EST
It’s not the same as last night, but there are some good basketball games scheduled for Wednesday.
Nov 19, 2014, 4:15 PM EST
Who will be this years Marcus Foster and Isaiah Taylor?
- Poll: 54 percent of people think Kentucky beats the 76ers, 54 percent of people are dumb 13
- Burning Questions: Who will be this year’s surprise freshman standout? 0
- After getting embarrassed by No. 1 Kentucky, where does No. 5 Kansas go from here? 3
- No. 1 Kentucky’s size, depth overwhelms No. 5 Kansas, makes 40-0 seem possible? 5
- No. 4 Duke proves No. 19 Michigan State cannot win at elite level if they keep missing on elite talent 3
- Wofford’s grueling start to the season began well before their 7:00 a.m. game 0
- No. 13 Gonzaga makes definitive statement with blowout of No. 22 SMU 2
- Poll: 54 percent of people think Kentucky beats the 76ers, 54 percent of people are dumb (15)
- 2014-15 Season Preview: Can the ACC produce four Final Four teams? (6)
- No. 1 Kentucky’s size, depth overwhelms No. 5 Kansas, makes 40-0 seem possible? (5)
- No. 1 Kentucky survives Buffalo despite ugly effort offensively (4)
- Report: Kansas transfer Conner Frankamp considering Colorado, Wichita State (3)