Bracket Update: Oklahoma leads Field of 68
This should not come as a surprise: Oklahoma is the No. 1 overall seed in today’s bracket. After dispatching Oklahoma State and West Virginia last week, the Sooners own the top spot in the RPI, their only blemish a triple-overtime classic at Kansas.
The rest of the top line is as follows: Kansas, North Carolina, and Villanova. Elsewhere, the carousel continues. Between Saturday morning and Sunday night, all but two teams (Maryland and Texas AM) ranked between No. 9 and No. 16 on the Seed List suffered defeats. We should probably be used to that by now, and it’s likely to continue.
Clemson is this week’s biggest mover. While there are certainly question marks on the Tigers’ resume (including a rather horrid non-conference SOS number), the Selection Committee would not ignore a team with a 5-1 mark in the ACC that includes five straight victories over Florida State, Syracuse, Louisville, Duke, and Miami. Four of those five games were at home and Clemson now embarks on a journey that includes four of five games on the road. We’ll see how the Tigers handle prosperity.
A bit under-the-radar, Texas AM has quietly remained unbeaten in the SEC. The Aggies have wins over Baylor, Texas, and Gonzaga outside the league, and haven’t lost since December 5. Just something to keep an eye on.
Margins between teams remain very marginal - pun intended. There really isn’t much difference between the resume of a team listed in the “First Four Out” and one listed as a nine or 10 seed. We have a long way to go.
UPDATED: January 18, 2016
Teams in CAPS represent the projected AUTOMATIC bid. In the event of a tie in the loss column, RPI is first tiebreaker. Notes: To simulate actual bracket conditions, we’ve used current conference leaders to receive the automatic bid. Exceptions are made for teams that use an abbreviation (ex: UCLA)
Several new bracketing principles were introduced a couple of years ago. You can read them for yourself at 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)
- Washington vs. Geo Washington | South Region
- Seton Hall vs. Alabama | Midwest Region
- HAMPTON vs. TEXAS-SOUTHERN | South Region
- NAVY vs. MT. ST. MARY’S | Midwest Region
BRACKET PROJECTION ...
|SOUTH - Louisville||MIDWEST - Chicago|
|Oklahoma City||Des Moines|
|1) OKLAHOMA||1) Kansas|
|16) HAMPTON / TX-SOUTHERN||16) NAVY / MT. ST. MARY’S|
|8) Colorado||8) Notre Dame|
|9) Clemson||9) UCLA|
|5) Kentucky||5) Arizona|
|12) ARK-LITTLE ROCK||12) Alabama / Seton Hall|
|4) Miami-FL||4) Purdue|
|13) CHATTANOOGA||13) MEMPHIS|
|6) Baylor||6) Dayton|
|11) Geo Washington / Washington||11) VALPARAISO|
|3) Michigan State||3) Virginia|
|14) UAB||14) STONY BROOK|
|Oklahoma City||St. Louis|
|7) Michigan||7) Indiana|
|10) SAINT MARY’S||10) Stanford|
|2) TEXAS AM||2) Xavier|
|15) PRINCETON||15) IP-FORT WAYNE|
|WEST - Anaheim||EAST - Philadelphia|
|1) VILLANOVA||1) NORTH CAROLINA|
|16) MONTANA||16) CSU-BAKERSFIELD|
|8) South Carolina||8) Butler|
|9) California||9) WICHITA STATE|
|5) Duke||5) Providence|
|12) SAN DIEGO STATE||12) UC-IRVINE|
|4) Oregon||4) USC|
|13) JAMES MADISON||13) BELMONT|
|6) Pittsburgh||6) Louisville|
|11) Connecticut||11) VCU|
|3) Iowa State||3) West Virginia|
|14) NO. ILLINOIS||14) NORTH FLORIDA|
|7) Utah||7) Texas|
|10) Gonzaga||10) MONMOUTH|
|2) IOWA||2) Maryland|
|15) TEXAS AM-CC||15) UNC-ASHEVILLE|
NOTES on the BRACKET: Oklahoma is the No. 1 overall seed followed by Kansas, North Carolina, and Villanova.
Last Four teams in (at large): Washington, Seton Hall, Alabama, George Washington
First Four teams out (at large): Oregon State, Florida State, Boise State, Texas Tech
Next four teams out (at large): Florida, Saint Joseph’s, Marquette, Cincinnati
Breakdown by Conference ...
Pac 12 (8): USC, Oregon, Arizona, Utah, UCLA, California, Stanford, Washington
ACC (7): NORTH CAROLINA, Virginia, Miami-FL, Duke, Louisville, Pittsburgh, Notre Dame
Big 12 (6): OKLAHOMA, Kansas, West Virginia, Iowa State, Baylor, Texas
Big 10 (6): IOWA, Maryland, Michigan State, Purdue, Indiana, Michigan
Big East (5): VILLANOVA, Xavier, Providence, Butler, Seton Hall
SEC (4): TEXAS AM, Kentucky, South Carolina, Alabama
Atlantic 10 (3): VCU, Dayton, George Washington
American (2): MEMPHIS, Connecticut
West Coast (2): SAINT MARY’S, Gonzaga
MAAC (1): MONMOUTH
Mountain West (1): SAN DIEGO STATE
Missouri Valley (1): WICHITA STATE
ONE BID LEAGUES: UAB (C-USA), Ark-Little Rock (SBELT), Princeton (IVY), Montana (BSKY), Valparaiso (HORIZON), Texas AM-CC (SLND), Chattanooga (STHN), UC-Irvine (BWEST), Northern Illinois (MAC), North Florida (ASUN), Belmont (OVC), James Madison (CAA), UNC-Asheville (BSO), Hampton (MEAC), IP-Fort Wayne (SUM), CSU-Bakersfield (WAC), Stony Brook (AEAST), Navy (PAT), Mt. St. Mary’s (NEC), Texas-Southern (SWAC)