It was quite a night for a couple of bubble teams.
With March knocking on the door, road wins for Arkansas and Oregon pushed the Razorbacks and Ducks into the Field of 68 – they are paired against each other in a First Four matchup in Dayton. Missouri and Minnesota are the other at-large participants in today’s Opening Round games. The revolving door, known as the 2014 bubble, continues to churn.
Nothing new at the top of the bracket: Florida, Arizona, Wichita State, and Syracuse retain No. 1 seeds. In fact, there weren’t many changes – other than some regional adjustments – to the first quadrant (Top 4 seeds). St. Louis did drop a seed line, with surging North Carolina now the final No. 4 seed (No. 16 on the s-curve).
Iowa continues to slide a bit, having lost three straight and 4 of 6 games. The Hawkeyes are not in any danger of missing the NCAA Tournament at this point, but they are at risk of finding themselves in the 7-9 seed range without reversing course. A rather weak non-conference schedule isn’t helping: Iowa’s best non-league wins are Xavier, UTEP, and Notre Dame.
Buckle up for a busy weekend of college hoops. Championship Week is right around the corner.
UPDATED: February 28, 2014
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 http://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)
- Arkansas vs. Oregon | Midwest Region
- Missouri vs. Minnesota | South Region
- ALABAMA STATE vs. UTAH VALLEY | East Region
- WEBER STATE vs. HIGH POINT | Midwest Region
BRACKET PROJECTION …
|SOUTH – Memphis||WEST – Anaheim|
|1) FLORIDA||1) ARIZONA|
|16) DAVIDSON||16) ROBERT MORRIS|
|8) VCU||8) SMU|
|9) GONZAGA||9) Pittsburgh|
|5) Louisville||5) Kentucky|
|12) Missouri / Minnesota||12) BYU|
|4) VIRGINIA||4) Iowa State|
|13) BELMONT||13) NORTH DAKOTA ST|
|6) UCLA||6) Ohio State|
|11) Oklahoma State||11) Saint Joseph’s|
|3) San Diego State||3) Duke|
|14) GEORGIA STATE||14) S.F. AUSTIN|
|7) Kansas State||7) Stanford|
|10) Xavier||10) Baylor|
|2) MICHIGAN||2) CREIGHTON
|15) VERMONT||15) UC-IRVINE|
|EAST – New York||MIDWEST – Indianapolis|
|1) SYRACUSE||1) WICHITA STATE|
|16) UTAH VALLEY / ALABAMA ST||16) WEBER ST / HIGH POINT|
|8) George Washington||8) Iowa|
|9) Arizona State||9) Memphis|
|5) Texas||5) SAINT LOUIS|
|12) HARVARD||12) SOUTHERN MISS|
|4) CINCINNATI||4) North Carolina|
|13) DELAWARE||13) WESTERN MICHIGAN|
|6) Oklahoma||6) NEW MEXICO|
|11) GREEN BAY||11) Arkansas / Oregon|
|3) Villanova||3) Michigan State|
|14) IONA||14) MERCER|
|7) Massachusetts||7) Connecticut|
|10) Colorado||10) California|
|2) Wisconsin||2) KANSAS|
|15) BOSTON UNIVERSITY||15) NC-CENTRAL|
NOTES on the BRACKET: Florida is the overall No. 1 seed followed by Arizona, Wichita State, and Syracuse.
Last Five teams in (at large): Oklahoma State, Arkansas, Missouri, Oregon, Minnesota
First Five teams out (at large): Providence, Tennessee, Georgetown, Richmond, Dayton
Next five teams out (at large): Nebraska, LSU, Florida State, St. John’s, Marquette
Breakdown by Conference …
Big 12 (7): Kansas, Iowa State, Kansas State, Oklahoma, Texas, Baylor, Oklahoma State
Pac 12 (7): Arizona, Colorado, UCLA, California, Stanford, Arizona State, Oregon
Big Ten (6): Michigan State, Michigan, Ohio State, Iowa, Wisconsin, Minnesota
Atlantic 10 (5): Massachusetts, VCU, Saint Louis, George Washington, Saint Joseph’s
ACC (5): Duke, Syracuse, North Carolina, Pittsburgh, Virginia
American (5): Louisville, Memphis, Connecticut, Cincinnati, SMU
SEC (4): Kentucky, Florida, Missouri, Arkansas
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 … Southern Miss (C-USA), Belmont (Ohio Valley), Georgia State (Sun Belt), Boston University (Patriot), North Dakota State (Summit), Green Bay (Horizon), Davidson (Southern), Utah Valley (WAC), Iona (MAAC), Stephen F. Austin (Southland), Western Michigan (MAC), Mercer (A-Sun), Harvard (IVY), UC-Irvine (Big West), Delaware (Colonial), Vermont (American East), Weber State (Big Sky), NC-Central (MEAC), High Point (Big South), Robert Morris (NEC), Alabama State (SWAC)