Bracketology

By Harris Hicks

It’s almost here, basketball fans! The anticipated Selection Sunday is now just ten days away!

This week, it was made apparent that the SEC is no longer a joke at basketball. They have two teams sitting in the top ten in RPI including a red hot Gator team in the top five.

It was learned how underrated Minnesota and Butler are. Both teams find themselves sitting in the top-ten in RPI, but none have a top twenty AP ranking.

st-johns-minnesota-basketball.jpg

The world saw the consistent powerhouses such as Kansas, Villanova, UNC, and Louisville rule the top four RPI. However, it wasn’t all smooth sailing for the nation’s elite as BYU took down unbeaten Gonzaga in Spokane!

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This made for questions: is Gonzaga the team people thought they were, or are they a fluke with a pillow-soft schedule?

Champ week is coming up quickly and a glimpse of where teams are in the tourney selection will be revealed!

THE BRACKET

NORTH REGION

1 Kansas
16 UC Irvine/LIU Brooklyn
8 Wisconsin
9 Iowa State
4 Cincinnati
13 Princeton
5 Virginia
12 Wichita State
6 VCU
11 Wichita State
3 Baylor
14 New Mexico State
7 Maryland
10 Virginia Tech
2 Butler
15 East Tennessee State

 

SOUTH REGION

1 Louisville
16 North Dakota State
8 Xavier
9 USC
4 UCLA
13 Vermont
5 West Virginia
12 Seton Hall/California
6 Saint Mary’s
11 Tx Arlington
3 Duke
14 Akron
7 Oklahoma St
10 Illinois St
2 Kentucky
15 Florida Gulf Coast


MIDWEST REGION

1 North Carolina
16 North Dakota
8 Arkansas
9 Middle Tennessee
4 Florida State
13 Vanderbilt/Wake Forest
5 Purdue
12 UNC Wilmington
6 Notre Dame
11 Rhode Island
3 Gonzaga
14 Valparaiso
7 South Carolina
10 Northwestern
2 Oregon
15 Bucknell


WEST REGION

1 Villanova
16 Texas A&M CC/Texas Southern
8 Miami (FL)
9 Michigan St
4 Minnesota
13 Monmouth
5 SMU
12 Nevada
6 Dayton
11 Providence
3 Arizona
14 Belmont
7 Creighton
10 Michigan
2 Florida
15 UNC Asheville

 

 

BREAKING DOWN THE BUBBLE

LAST 4 BYES LAST 4 IN FIRST 4 OUT NEXT 4 OUT
1. Michigan (19-10) 1. Seton Hall (19-10) 1. Houston (20-8) 1. Georgia (16-12)
2. Northwestern (20-9) 2. Vanderbilt (16-14) 2. Syracuse (17-13) 2. Boise St (17-9)
3. Providence (19-11) 3. Wake Forest (16-12) 3. Marquette (17-11) 3. Tennessee (15-14)
4. Rhode Island (19-9) 4. California (19-9) 4. Illinois (16-12) 4. TCU (16-12)

In:

Providence-

NCAA Basketball: Marquette at Providence

The winner of this week is undoubtedly Providence. The Friars are flying high on a four game winning streak against three tournament teams. One of these teams was Marquette who find themselves squarely on the cutting board. Providence has six top fifty RPI wins and will be banking on them to punch their ticket to the big dance.

Vanderbilt-south_carolina_vanderbilt_basketball_69058

Vanderbilt, before a narrow defeat at Rupp this tuesday, was riding on two straight wins against two top thirty RPI; Tennessee and  South Carolina.

Rhode Island-

It looked like Rhode Island’s season was done with a shocking loss to Fordham. However, they have climbed to the top forty-five in RPI and two top twenty-five RPI wins.

NCAA Basketball: Dartmouth at Rhode Island
“Nov 11, 2016; Kingston, RI, USA; Rhode Island Rams guard Jeff Dowtin (11) drives towards the basket against the Dartmouth Big Green during the first half at the Thomas M. Ryan Center. Mandatory Credit: Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports

Out:

Syracuse-

2017-02-19-sugtech1hf0392

Syracuse has seven top fifty RPI wins, but with a sub-top seventy RPI, it’s not going to be enough. The Orange have struggled for consistency all season and the selection committee is apt to punish them for it. You can’t lose to Georgia Tech and Pittsburg and then expect to worm into the field by beating Duke at the buzzer. (That shot by John Gillon was cold)

Illinois-

9891924-ncaa-basketball-northwestern-at-illinois

Illinois comes into this week having won four out of its last five games. That hot streak, paired with a top fifty-five RPI, puts them right in the middle of the bubble mix.

Houston-

NCAA Basketball: Houston at Connecticut

Houston has a great record at 20-8, and a top fifty-five RPI, but a lack of quality wins is keeping them out.

Others In Consideration: Kansas St, Charleston, Pittsburgh, Mississippi, Clemson, Texas Tech

QUEST FOR THE ONE SEED

ONE SEED TWO SEED
Kansas (26-3) Kentucky (24-5)
Villanova (27-3) Oregon (25-4)
North Carolina (24-5) Florida (23-6)
Louisville (23-6) Butler (23-6)

 

Due to Gonzaga’s loss, Louisville takes the last one seed.

Gonzaga and Baylor fell drastically out of the conversation. With an unconvincing strength-of-schedule and a seventy RPI, the Zags lost the only thing that was one seed convincing: their undefeated record.

 

 

Baylor is just 7-5 in their last twelve games. The Bears are shockingly just barely over .500 for the last month or so. They have the résumé, they just need more momentum. This is something that all of the other two seeds have.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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