Mar 16, 2014, 9:12 AM EDT
We are a few hours from the release of the 2014 NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship bracket. And the final No. 1 seed may not be decided. By reaching the Big Ten title game, Michigan is probably the frontrunner having already won the regular-season title. Should Michigan fall to rival Michigan State, Virginia will be knocking on the door if the Cavaliers beat Duke to win both the ACC regular season and tournament titles. Lest we forget about Villanova. The Wildcats could still emerge as the East Region leader if both the Wolverines and Cavaliers lose.
In other words, the Selection Committee in Indianapolis will spend its Sunday building multiple brackets depending on what happens this afternoon. Florida will be the top overall seed. Arizona and Wichita State should also be locked in place on the top line.
Providence erased any doubt about its spot in the Field of 68 by winning the Big East tournament Saturday night. The three potential bid thieves from Saturday (NC State, Georgia, St. Bonaventure) all lost. So the rest of the field remains in tact.
Enjoy your Selection Sunday.
Teams in CAPS represent the AUTOMATIC bid based on tournament results. 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)
- Nebraska vs. SMU | East Region
- Dayton vs. BYU | West Region
- TEXAS SOUTHERN vs. MOUNT ST. MARY’S | Midwest Region
- CAL-POLY vs. COASTAL CAROLINA | East Region
BRACKET PROJECTION …
|SOUTH – Memphis||WEST – Anaheim|
|1) Florida||1) Arizona|
|16) ALBANY||16) WEBER STATE|
|8) Oregon||8) Memphis|
|9) GONZAGA||9) Kansas State|
|5) Ohio State||5) Baylor|
|12) HARVARD||12) Dayton / BYU|
|4) Syracuse||4) San Diego State|
|13) WESTERN MICHIGAN||13) S.F. AUSTIN|
|San Antonio||San Antonio|
|6) North Carolina||6) Connecticut|
|11) PROVIDENCE||11) Tennessee|
|3) Iowa State||3) Creighton|
|14) MERCER||14) NEW MEXICO STATE|
|7) VCU||7) Kentucky|
|10) Stanford||10) Saint Joseph’s|
|2) Wisconsin||2) Kansas|
|15) NC-CENTRAL||15) MILWAUKEE|
|EAST – New York||MIDWEST – Indianapolis|
|1) Michigan||1) WICHITA STATE|
|16) CO CAROLINA / CAL-POLY||16) TX SOUTHERN / MT ST MARY’S|
|8) George Washington||8) Oklahoma State|
|9) Pittsburgh||9) Colorado|
|5) UCLA||5) NEW MEXICO|
|12) NORTH DAKOTA ST||12) MANHATTAN|
|4) Cincinnati||4) Michigan State|
|13) DELAWARE||13) TULSA|
|6) Texas||6) Oklahoma|
|11) Nebraska / SMU||11) Xavier|
|3) Duke||3) LOUISVILLE|
|14) Georgia State||14) EASTERN KENTUCKY|
|7) Saint Louis||7) Massachusetts|
|10) Arizona State||10) Iowa|
|2) Villanova||2) Virginia|
|15) AMERICAN||15) WOFFORD|
NOTES on the BRACKET: Florida remains the overall No. 1 seed followed by Arizona, Wichita State, and Michigan.
Last Five teams in (at large): Xavier, Nebraska, Dayton, SMU, BYU
First Five teams out (at large): Florida State, Minnesota, California, Arkansas, Missouri
Next five teams out (at large): Green Bay, Southern Miss, Louisiana Tech, NC State, Toledo
Breakdown by Conference …
Big 12 (7): Kansas, Iowa State, Kansas State, Oklahoma, Texas, Baylor, Oklahoma State
Pac 12 (6): Arizona, UCLA, Stanford, Arizona State, Oregon, Colorado
Atlantic 10 (6): Massachusetts, VCU, Saint Louis, George Washington, Saint Joseph’s, Dayton
Big Ten (6): Michigan State, Michigan, Ohio State, Iowa, Wisconsin, Nebraska
ACC (5): Duke, Virginia, Syracuse, North Carolina, Pittsburgh
American (5): Louisville, Memphis, Connecticut, Cincinnati, SMU
Big East (4): Creighton, Villanova, Xavier, Providence
SEC (3): Kentucky, Florida, Tennessee
Mountain West (2): New Mexico, San Diego State
West Coast (2): Gonzaga, BYU
Missouri Valley (1): Wichita State
Conference Automatic Qualifiers … TULSA (C-USA), EASTERN KENTUCKY (Ohio Valley), Georgia State (Sun Belt), AMERICAN (Patriot), NORTH DAKOTA STATE (Summit), MILWAUKEE (Horizon), WOFFORD (Southern), NEW MEXICO STATE (WAC), MANHATTAN (MAAC), STEPHEN F AUSTIN (Southland), WESTERN MICHIGAN (MAC), MERCER (A-Sun), HARVARD (IVY), CAL-POLY (Big West), DELAWARE (Colonial), ALBANY (American East), WEBER STATE (Big Sky), NC-CENTRAL (MEAC), COASTAL CAROLINA (Big South), MOUNT ST. MARY’S (NEC), TEXAS SOUTHERN (SWAC)
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