Bracketology: Syracuse keeps climbing

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As we ushered in 2017, Syracuse could easily have been asking, what happened? A preseason Top 25 team, the Orange were mired in a streak that produced loses to Connecticut, St. John’s, and Boston College.  Early January wasn’t much better, as the Orange’s early league road schedule took a toll. Fast forward to February. It’s amazing what a five-game winning streak in the ACC can do for a team’s resume, especially when the field around them remains quite average.  Syracuse’s last-second heroics at Clemson have the Orange at 8-4 in the league and, at least for the moment, a few slots above the cutline.  We’ll see how the final month plays out.

No changes on the No. 1 seed line today. Kansas and Baylor bounced back with road wins .  Come Saturday, we’ll all get a sneak peak at how the actual Selection Committee views the Top 16 teams (on their Seed List), noted as the top four seeds in each region.  Every Committee is a little different, so it will be interesting to see how they view things.  Some of us would prefer to see their look at the bubble, too.  Then again, deciphering and explaining those concepts would require a show that’s too long for network television.  Come Monday, the middle and lower half of the bracket could look quite different – again.

UPDATED: February 9, 2017

Regarding bracketing principles, 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)

  • Michigan vs. Seton Hall | South Region
  • Wichita State vs. Marquette | East Region
  • WEBER STATE vs. UC-DAVIS | Midwest Region
  • MT. ST. MARY’S vs. NC CENTRAL | East Region

BRACKET PROJECTION …

EAST New York WEST San Jose                         
Buffalo Salt Lake City
1) VILLANOVA 1) GONZAGA
16) NC-CENTRAL / M.S. MARY’S 16) TX-SOUTHERN
8) VCU 8) California
9) Oklahoma State 9) Iowa State
Orlando Milwaukee
5) Butler 5) Duke
12) UNC-WILMINGTON 12) VALPARAISO
4) FLORIDA 4) WISCONSIN
13) MONMOUTH 13) NEW MEXICO ST
Buffalo Indianapolis
6) Notre Dame 6) Maryland
11) Wichita St / Marquette 11) MID TENNESSEE ST
3) West Virginia 3) Louisville
14) WINTHROP 14) BELMONT
Greenville Sacramento
7) USC 7) SMU
10) Indiana 10) Virginia Tech
2) NORTH CAROLINA 2) OREGON
15) PRINCETON 15) NO DAKOTA ST
SOUTH – Memphis MIDWEST – Kansas City
Tulsa Tulsa
1) Baylor 1) KANSAS
16) SAM HOUSTON ST 16) WEBER ST / UC-DAVIS
8) Northwestern 8) Syracuse
9) Miami-FL 9) Minnesota
Indianapolis Milwaukee
5) Creighton 5) Purdue
12) AKRON 12) ILLINOIS STATE
4) Kentucky 4) CINCINNATI
13) VERMONT 13) NEVADA
Sacramento Greenville
6) Saint Mary’s 6) South Carolina
11) Michigan / Seton Hall 11) Michigan State
3) UCLA 3) Virginia
14) ARKANSAS STATE 14) FLA GULF COAST
Orlando Salt Lake City
7) Xavier 7) Dayton
10) Kansas State 10) TCU
2) Florida State 2) Arizona
15) BUCKNELL 15) FURMAN

NOTES on the BRACKET: Villanova is the No. 1 overall seed, followed by Gonzaga, Kansas, and Baylor.

Last Four Byes (at large): Miami-FL, Virginia Tech, Indiana, Michigan State

Last Four IN (at large): Seton Hall, Wichita State, Marquette, Michigan

First Four OUT (at large): Tennessee, Rhode Island, Georgia Tech, Arkansas

Next four teams OUT (at large): Wake Forest, Clemson, Ohio State, Georgetown

Breakdown by Conference …

ACC (9): NORTH CAROLINA, Florida State, Virginia, Louisville, Duke, Notre Dame, Syracuse, Miami-FL, Virginia Tech

Big 10 (8): WISCONSIN, Purdue, Maryland, Northwestern, Minnesota, Indiana, Michigan State, Michigan

Big 12 (7): KANSAS, Baylor, West Virginia, Iowa State, Oklahoma State, TCU, Kansas State

Big East (6): VILLANOVA, Butler, Creighton, Xavier, Seton Hall, Marquette

Pac 12 (5): OREGON, Arizona, UCLA, USC, California

SEC (3): FLORIDA, Kentucky, South Carolina

Atlantic 10 (2): VCU, Dayton

American (2): CINCINNATI, SMU

West Coast (2): GONZAGA, Saint Mary’s

Missouri Valley (2): ILLINOIS STATE, Wichita State

Mountain West (1): NEVADA

ONE BID LEAGUES: Monmouth (MAAC), Middle Tennessee State (C-USA), Arkansas State (SBELT), Princeton (IVY), Weber State (BSKY), Valparaiso (HORIZON), Sam Houston State (SLND), Furman (STHN), UC-Davis (BWEST), Akron (MAC), Florida Gulf Coast (ASUN), Belmont (OVC), UNC-Wilmington (CAA), Winthrop (BSO), NC-Central (MEAC), North Dakota State (SUM), New Mexico State (WAC), Vermont (AEAST), Bucknell (PAT), Mt. St. Mary’s (NEC), Texas-Southern (SWAC)