Bracketology: Kentucky reigns and March arrives
As the calendar turns to March, Kentucky has entrenched itself as the No. 1 overall seed. Unless the Wildcats lose multiple times between now and Selection Sunday - which is highly unlikely - they will stand atop the bracket when the official Field of 68 is unveiled on March 15. UK’s proverbial “march” will begin in Louisville and head through Cleveland in the Midwest Region.
As for the remaining No. 1 seeds, Virginia has a firm grasp on the East. After that, there’s still a bit of a race. If Gonzaga loses, Villanova is next in line to ascend to the top line. We also can’t exclude Wisconsin, Arizona, or even Kansas - although the Jayhawks will need help from the others in front of them. While winning both Big 12 regular season and tournament titles (if it happens) would be mighty impressive, the Jayhawks’ loss total might be too great to push KU ahead of the other three if those teams continue to win.
The bubble/cutline remains a hodge-podge of rotating resumes. The week ahead - leading into conference tournaments - figures to be huge. And it might be Friday or Saturday of Championship Week before the final Field comes into focus.
The complete Seed List used for today’s bracket can be found at Bracketville.
UPDATED: February 27, 2015
Teams in CAPS represent the projected AUTOMATIC bid. In the event of a tie in the loss column, RPI is the first tiebreaker used. Exceptions are made for teams that use an abbreviation (UCLA, BYU, etc).
Several new bracketing principles were introduced last year. 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)
- Boise State vs. Davidson | Midwest Region
- Tulsa vs. Texas AM | South Region
- TEXAS SOUTHERN vs. ST. FRANCIS-BROOKLYN | Midwest Region
- UL-MONROE vs. BUCKNELL | East Region
BRACKET PROJECTION ...
|MIDWEST - Cleveland||EAST - Syracuse|
|1) KENTUCKY||1) VIRGINIA|
|16) ST. FRANCIS / TX-STHERN||16) UL MONROE / BUCKNELL|
|8) Ohio State||8) Xavier|
|9) St. John’s||9) Dayton|
|5) Northern Iowa||5) North Carolina|
|12) Boise State / Davidson||12) VALPARAISO|
|4) Notre Dame||4) Arkansas|
|13) IONA||13) HARVARD|
|6) Butler||6) SMU|
|11) LSU||11) Oregon|
|3) Iowa State||3) Baylor|
|14) CENTRAL MICHIGAN||14) HIGH POINT|
|7) SAN DIEGO ST||7) Indiana|
|10) Cincinnati||10) Georgia|
|2) WISCONSIN||2) VILLANOVA|
|15) SO DAKOTA ST||15) FGCU|
|WEST - Los Angeles||SOUTH - Houston|
|1) GONZAGA||1) Duke|
|16) NORTHEASTERN||16) ALBANY|
|8) Iowa||8) Oklahoma State|
|9) NC State||9) Purdue|
|5) West Virginia||5) WICHITA STATE|
|12) WOFFORD||12) MURRAY STATE|
|4) Louisville||4) Utah|
|13) LOUISIANA TECH||13) STEPHEN F. AUSTIN|
|6) Georgetown||6) Providence|
|11) Temple||11) Tulsa / Texas A&M|
|3) Oklahoma||3) Maryland|
|14) EASTERN WASHINGTON||14) NC-CENTRAL|
|7) Michigan State||7) VCU|
|10) Colorado State||10) Mississippi|
|2) ARIZONA||2) KANSAS|
|15) UC DAVIS||15) NEW MEXICO ST|
NOTES on the BRACKET: Kentucky is the overall No. 1 seed followed by Virginia, Duke, and Gonzaga. Next in line: Villanova, Wisconsin, Arizona, and Kansas.
Last Five teams in (at large): Temple, Texas AM, Tulsa, Davidson, Boise State
First Five teams out (at large): Illinois, Stanford, Miami-FL, Texas, Pittsburgh
Next five teams out (at large): Old Dominion, UCLA, BYU, Saint Mary’s, Rhode Island
Breakdown by Conference ...
Big 10 (7): Wisconsin, Maryland, Indiana, Michigan State, Ohio State, Iowa, Purdue
Big 12 (6): Kansas, Iowa State, Oklahoma, Baylor, West Virginia, Oklahoma State
ACC (6): Virginia, Duke, Notre Dame, Louisville, North Carolina, NC State
Big East (6): Villanova, Butler, Georgetown, Providence, Xavier, St. John’s
SEC (6): Kentucky, Arkansas, Georgia, Ole Miss, LSU, Texas AM
American (4): SMU, Temple, Cincinnati, Tulsa
Pac 12 (3): Arizona, Utah, Oregon
Mountain West (3): San Diego State, Colorado State, Boise State
Atlantic 10 (2): VCU, Dayton
Missouri Valley (2): Wichita State, Northern Iowa
Conference USA (1): Louisiana Tech
West Coast (1): Gonzaga
ONE BID LEAGUES: UL Monroe (SBELT), Harvard (IVY), Eastern Washington (BSKY), Valparaiso (HZN), S.F. Austin (SLND), Wofford (STHN), UC Davis (BWEST), Central Michigan (MAC), Iona (MAAC), Florida Gulf Coast (ASUN), Murray State (OVC), Northeastern (CAA), High Point (BSO), North Carolina Central (MEAC), South Dakota State (SUM), New Mexico State (WAC), Albany (AEAST), Bucknell (PAT), St. Francis - Brooklyn (NEC), Texas Southern (SWAC)