Notre Dame’s the new No. 1 in our latest NCAA tourney projections


Less than a week until Selection Sunday and we have a lot to be decided in conference tournaments.  We also have at least one spot up for grabs at the top.  Today, Notre Dame grabs the final No. 1 seed and is slotted out West – with opening games in Chicago.  Ohio State is a lock for the top line. Pittsburgh and Kansas are looking very strong, too. 

Here are some teams who have the most at stake entering conference tournament play: Michigan State, Alabama, Clemson, Virginia Tech, Colorado, Boston College, Marquette, Penn State, Colorado State, Washington State, and Memphis. I would expect we’ll see some changes at the bottom of the bracket throughout the week – especially if we get a few upsets.  Stay tuned.

UPDATED: Monday, March 7 | Records reflect Division I games only – through March 6.

NEW: Teams in CAPS represent the AUTOMATIC bid champion for this bracket. Exceptions are made for those teams that traditionally use an abbreviation (UTEP, BYU, etc).

NOTE: In the new 68-team format you will notice two pairing games that represent the First Four pairings. In this bracket the First Four games in Dayton would be … Alabama vs. Butler | Michigan State vs. Clemson | Texas Southern vs. McNeese State | UNC-ASHEVILLE vs. Bethune-Cookman. The final four at-large teams are paired along with the teams seeded 65-68 on the S-curve. The matchups are indicated in the bracket below.

Next Update: Wednesday, March 9.


EASTNewark   SOUTHEASTNew Orleans
Cleveland   Cleveland
1) Ohio State (29-2)   1) PITTSBURGH (27-4)
16) Beth-Cookman / NC-ASHEVILLE   16) McNeese State / Texas-Southern
8  UCLA (22-9)   8  George Mason (26-6)
9) Old Dominion (25-6)   9) Illinois (19-12)
Tampa   Tampa
5) Texas AM (22-7)   5) Connecticut (21-9)
12) Alabama / Butler   12) BELMONT (30-4)  
4) Louisville (23-8)   4) Florida (24-6)
13) Harvard (21-5)   13) Charleston (24-9)
Washington, DC   Denver
6) Vanderbilt (21-9)   6) Temple (24-6)
11) Michigan (18-12)   11) Gonzaga (23-9)
3) Syracuse (25-6)   3) Wisconsin (23-7)
14) Milwaukee (19-12)   14) Kent State (20-10)
Charlotte   Tulsa
7) UNLV (23-7)   7) Arizona (25-6)
10) Richmond (24-7)   10) Marquette (18-13)
2) Duke (27-4)   2) Texas (25-6)
15) Long Island (26-5)   15) MOREHEAD STATE (23-9)
SOUTHWEST – San Antonio   WEST – Anaheim
Tulsa   Chicago
1) Kansas (28-2)   1) Notre Dame (25-5)
16) Boston University (19-13)   16) North Texas (20-10)
8  Utah State (27-3)   8  Missouri (21-9)
9) Tennessee (18-13)   9) Florida State (21-9)
Washington, DC   Tucson
5) Xavier (24-6)   5) West Virginia (20-10)
12) Michigan State / Clemson   12) UAB (22-7)  
4) St. John’s (20-10)   4) Kentucky (22-8)
13) Iona (22-10)   13) Oakland (22-9)
Chicago   Charlotte
6) Cincinnati (24-7)   6) Georgetown (21-9)
11) Boston College (19-11)   11) St. Mary’s (22-7)
3) Purdue (25-6)   3) North Carolina (23-6)
14) INDIANA STATE (19-13)   14) Bucknell (24-8)
Tucson   Denver
7) Villanova (21-9)   7) Kansas State (21-9)
10) Georgia (20-10)   10) Washington (20-10)
2) San Diego State (27-2)   2) BYU (27-3)
15) Northern Colorado (17-10)   15) Long Beach State (18-10)



NOTES on the BRACKET: Ohio State remains the No. 1 overall seed followed by Pittsburgh, Kansas, and Notre Dame. The two seeds in order are Texas, Duke, BYU, San Diego State

Last Five teams in (at large): Michigan, Michigan State, Butler, Clemson, Alabama

First Five teams out (at large): Virginia Tech, Colorado, VCU, Penn State, Missouri State

Next in Line: Colorado State, New Mexico, Washington State, Memphis, Baylor

Bracket adjustments: None in this update.

Here is the team breakdown by Conference …

Big East (11): Pittsburgh, Connecticut, Syracuse, Notre Dame, Georgetown, Villanova, West Virginia, Louisville, St. John’s, Cincinnati, Marquette

Big Ten (6): Ohio State, Purdue, Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan State, Michigan

SEC (6): Florida, Kentucky, Vanderbilt, Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama

Big 12 (5): Kansas, Texas, Texas AM, Missouri, Kansas State

ACC (5): Duke, North Carolina, Florida State, Boston College, Clemson

Pac 10 (3): Arizona, UCLA, Washington

Mountain West (3): San Diego State, BYU, UNLV

Atlantic 10 (3): Xavier, Temple, Richmond

Colonial (2): George Mason, Old Dominion

West Coast (2): St. Mary’s, Gonzaga

Horizon (2): Milwaukee, Butler

Conference USA (1): UAB

Missouri Valley (1): INDIANA STATE

Conference leaders/champions … Utah State (WAC), MOREHEAD STATE (OVC), Iona (MAAC), Kent State (MAC), Northern Colorado (Big Sky), Charleston (Southern), Oakland (Summit), Long Beach State (Big West), Long Island (NEC), BELMONT (Atlantic Sun), North Texas (Sun Belt), Harvard (Ivy), UNC-ASHEVILLE (Big South), Bethune-cookman (MEAC), BUCKNELL (Patriot), Boston University (America East), McNeese State(Southland), Texas Southern (SWAC)

Florida Gulf Coast’s Demetris Morant out 3-4 months

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Florida Gulf Coast redshirt junior forward Demetris Morant is expected to miss the next 3-4 months after undergoing surgery last week to repair a stress fracture in his right shin, the school announced on Tuesday.

The 6-foot-9 forward averaged 4.5 points, 4.4 blocks and 1.3 blocks per game in 33 appearances (18 starts) for the Eagles during the 2014-15 season.

“This is obviously an unfortunate setback for Demetris, but it was a procedure that needed to be done,” Florida Gulf Coast head coach Dooley said in a statement. “We decided it would be best to have it completed now to hopefully get him back for A-Sun play. It’s an opportunity now for other guys to step up in his absence, and I have confidence they’ll get the job done.”

The Eagles have the top frontline in the Atlantic Sun, one that returns Marc-Eddy Norelia and Filip Cvjeticanin, a 3-point shooter who missed all of last season recovering from back surgery. VCU transfer Antravious Simmons becomes eligible in the second semester.

Florida Gulf Coast begins the 2015-16 season on Nov. 14 against Ohio.

Bill Self on Cheick Diallo: ‘It may be a couple of more weeks’

2015 McDonald's All American Game
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Cheick Diallo is currently practicing with Kansas, but his eligibility still remains in question.

On Monday, Kansas head coach Bill Self appeared on “The Border Patrol” on WHB-AM 810 and was asked to update the status of his freshman big man.

“He’s been cleared to practice,” Self told hosts Steven St. John and Nate Bukaty. “(His status) is depending on what they find throughout from the information we submit to them whenever we get it all together.

“A lot of people think, ‘Well, why wouldn’t it all be together?’ Well there’s a lot of reasons why. It’s because they told us recently some things that they just wanted. Instead of just throwing it to them piece by piece, they requested we to just submit it all together, so it may be a couple of more weeks before we’re able to submit everything when you’re talking about getting information from schools in Mali and everything like that.

“But we hope in two weeks, maybe three weeks, before we have a definite answer. But right now, Cheick is like everybody else. He’s practicing.”

Diallo, a 6-foot-9 forward from Mali is allowed to practice with the Jayhawks, but has been waiting to be cleared by the NCAA Eligibility Center despite enrolling in classes over the summer and earning six credits. Self anticipated this would be a long process, but has remained confident Diallo, the top-5 recruit in Class of 2015, will eventually be cleared to play this season.

For three years, Diallo attended Our Savior New American School in Centereach, New York, which is currently under NCAA review. In September, Pitt freshman Damon Wilson, Diallo’s teammate at OSNA, was cleared to play.

Kansas opens the season on Nov. 13 against Northern Colorado.