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Bracketology: Florida in driver’s seat for overall No. 1 seed

AP Photo/Phil Sandlin

AP

AP Photo/Phil Sandlin

AP

With its victory over Kentucky - and Arizona’s loss at Oregon - the Florida Gators are in the driver’s seat for the overall No. 1 seed in the upcoming NCAA tournament. Regardless, the Gators will be the top seed in the South Region with opening round games in nearby Orlando. The remaining No. 1 seeds as we begin Championship Week: Arizona (West), Wichita State (Midwest) and Villanova (East).

At this point, the first three No. 1 seeds appear to be locked-in. Which leaves us one spot for three or four teams. At least that’s how it appears today. The contenders include Villanova (as noted above), Kansas, Michigan, and Wisconsin. Virginia is still in the hunt, but its journey became much tougher after Sunday’s loss at Maryland. Achieving a No. 1 seed with eight losses would be something new, but few teams in history have played Kansas’ schedule. If Michigan wins the Big Ten tournament, the Wolverines would have a legitimate argument. They possess a higher number of NCAA-level wins than Villanova - due to the strength of the Big Ten as compared to the Big East. Wisconsin’s non-conference performance - with victories over Florida and Virginia - would help the Badgers’ case if they find the winner’s circle in Indianapolis next Sunday.
MORE: Florida, Wichita State are still sitting atop NBCSports.com’s Top 25

We’ll be updating the bracket every day this week as automatic qualifiers arrive and conference tournaments continue. Teams that have clinched automatic berths are listed in ALL CAPS - with the exception of teams like BYU and UCLA.

The bubble remains a work in progress. Nebraska grabbed a spot after beating Wisconsin on Sunday. Xavier, Tennessee, and BYU join the Huskers at the First Four in Dayton. It’s a big week for those teams and several others who are just above the last four at-larges. We’ll have to see how it plays out.

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 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. Tennessee | Midwest Region
  • Xavier vs. BYU | South Region
  • Alabama State vs. Wofford | East Region
  • Weber State vs. COASTAL CAROLINA | Midwest Region

BRACKET PROJECTION ...

SOUTH - MemphisWEST - Anaheim
OrlandoSan Diego
1) Florida1) Arizona
16) Robert Morris16) Utah Valley
8) Kansas State8) George Washington
9) Arizona State9) Gonzaga
SpokaneSan Diego
5) Ohio State5) Oklahoma
12) BYU / Xavier12) Toledo
4) Louisville4) Michigan State
13) S.F. Austin13) North Dakota State
BuffaloSan Antonio
6) New Mexico6) Baylor
11) Dayton11) Stanford
3) Syracuse3) Creighton
14) Boston University14) MERCER
MilwaukeeRaleigh
7) VCU7) Memphis
10) SMU10) Saint Joseph’s
2) Wisconsin2) Virginia
15) UC-Irvine15) Stony Brook
EAST - New YorkMIDWEST - Indianapolis
BuffaloSt. Louis
1) Villanova1) WICHITA STATE
16) Wofford / Alabama State16) Weber State / CO CAROLINA
8) Oklahoma State8) Kentucky
9) Iowa9) Oregon
SpokaneOrlando
5) North Carolina5) Texas
12) Louisiana Tech12) HARVARD
4) San Diego State4) Duke
13) Delaware13) Iona
San AntonioRaleigh
6) Massachusetts6) Saint Louis
11) Arkansas11) Tennessee / Nebraska
3) Iowa State3) Cincinnati
14) EASTERN KENTUCKY14) Georgia State
MilwaukeeSt. Louis
7) Connecticut7) UCLA
10) Colorado10) Pittsburgh
2) Michigan2) Kansas
15) Wright State15) NC-Central

NOTES on the BRACKET: Florida remains the overall No. 1 seed followed by Arizona, Wichita State, and Villanova.

Last Five teams in (at large): Stanford, Nebraska, Xavier, Tennessee, BYU

First Five teams out (at large): California, Georgetown, Minnesota, Missouri, St. John’s

Next five teams out (at large): Providence, Southern Miss, Green Bay, Florida State, Illinois

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

SEC (4): Kentucky, Florida, Arkansas, Tennessee

Big East (3): Creighton, Villanova, Xavier

Mountain West (2): New Mexico, San Diego State

West Coast (2): Gonzaga, BYU

Missouri Valley (1): Wichita State

Conference Automatic Qualifiers ... Louisiana Tech (C-USA), EASTERN KENTUCKY (Ohio Valley), Georgia State (Sun Belt), Boston University (Patriot), North Dakota State (Summit), Wright State (Horizon), Wofford (Southern), Utah Valley (WAC), Iona (MAAC), Stephen F. Austin (Southland), Toledo (MAC), MERCER (A-Sun), HARVARD (IVY), UC-Irvine (Big West), Delaware (Colonial), Stony Brook (American East), Weber State (Big Sky), NC-Central (MEAC), COASTAL CAROLINA (Big South), Robert Morris (NEC), Alabama State (SWAC)