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)
Apr 24, 2014, 12:57 AM EDT
According to multiple reports, former Georgetown big Moses Ayegba has decided to transfer to Nebraska.
Apr 24, 2014, 12:17 AM EDT
According to a report, UConn center Amida Brimah will need to undergo surgery on his left shoulder.
Apr 23, 2014, 10:38 PM EDT
Shaka Smart filled a vacancy on his staff Wednesday, hiring former Vanderbilt assistant David Cason.
Apr 23, 2014, 9:04 PM EDT
Less than a week after making an official visit to the school, it was reported that Malek Harris had committed to Kansas State. But that may not be the case.
Apr 23, 2014, 7:49 PM EDT
Frank Haith announced his coaching staff Wednesday, with the trio combining to have more than 90 seasons of coaching experience.
Apr 23, 2014, 6:33 PM EDT
UConn and Duke will reportedly play each other just before Christmas in New Jersey.
Apr 23, 2014, 5:23 PM EDT
Former St. John’s commit Darrick Wood verbally committed to attend DePaul on Wednesday.
Apr 23, 2014, 4:22 PM EDT
After playing well in Kentucky’s run to the national title game, Dakari Johnson has decided to return for his sophomore season.
Apr 23, 2014, 3:52 PM EDT
LSU should have the pieces to be a tournament team in 2014-2015.
Apr 23, 2014, 2:54 PM EDT
Minnesota landed a commitment from a 6-foot-11 three-star recruit.
Apr 23, 2014, 2:28 PM EDT
Adala Moto was a top 150 recruit in the class of 2012.
Apr 23, 2014, 1:58 PM EDT
Allen will be one of the keys to Arizona’s season. Click to see why.
Apr 23, 2014, 12:34 PM EDT
Randle talks favorite NBA players and the one-and-done rule.
Apr 23, 2014, 11:49 AM EDT
Kentucky got some good news on Wednesday afternoon.
Apr 23, 2014, 10:32 AM EDT
He will be eligible immediately.
Apr 23, 2014, 10:03 AM EDT
Not a bad pitch from the UConn star.
Apr 22, 2014, 11:08 PM EDT
The UTEP coach is now a candidate to replace Frank Haith at Missouri.
Apr 22, 2014, 10:10 PM EDT
Virginia got its fourth commit on Tuesday night.
Apr 22, 2014, 9:09 PM EDT
A look back on UConn’s second title in four years.
Apr 22, 2014, 8:05 PM EDT
The Southern coach is receiving a contract extension.
- Auburn will not appeal Bruce Pearl’s show-cause penalty 3
- Kentucky freshman Julius Randle entering NBA Draft 0
- ACC’s league schedule highlights the flaws of massive power conferences 4
- Report: Tennessee hires Southern Miss coach Donnie Tyndall 1
- Rice transfer Sean Obi commits to Duke 1
- Adam Silver says raising NBA’s age limit a top priority 7
- NCAA council aims to change immediate eligibility waiver policy 0
- #UMassUnited: Thousands show to support Derrick Gordon during Westboro Baptist Church protest (18)
- Reports: Missouri’s Frank Haith agrees to take the Tulsa job (11)
- Jabari Parker is headed to the NBA (9)
- Adam Silver says raising NBA’s age limit a top priority (7)
- Former Marquette commits Ahmed Hill, Satchel Pierce follow Buzz Williams to Virginia Tech (7)