Bracketology: Xavier vaults to top line

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College hoops is as unpredictable as ever – which makes for great viewing and a lot movement in early bracket projections.  With Arizona State’s loss Thursday night in Colorado, the Xavier Musketeers slide up a spot on the seed list and enter the weekend as the No. 1 seed in the West Region.  Duke (South), Michigan State (Midwest), and Villanova (East) remain in their same positions.

One could make a good case for Oklahoma or West Virginia on the top line, too.  Which makes Saturday’s tilt between the Sooners and Mountaineers in Morgantown that much more interesting.  If Oklahoma snags another quality road win tomorrow, (they already have wins at TCU and Wichita State), it’ll be hard to keep the Sooners off the top line regardless of Xavier’s outcome at Providence.

UPDATED: January 5, 2018

FIRST FOUR PAIRINGS – Dayton (First Round)

  • Washington vs. Baylor | South Region
  • Alabama vs. Ohio State East Region
  • COLGATE vs. NC A&T | East Region
  • TX-SOUTHERN vs. SE LOUISIANA | South Region

BRACKET PROJECTION

SOUTH Atlanta MIDWEST – Omaha                               
Charlotte Detroit
1) Duke 1) MICHIGAN STATE
16) TX-SOUTHERN / SE LOUISIANA 16) PRINCETON
8) Butler 8) Miami-FL
9) Michigan 9) Tennessee
Nashville Boise
5) KENTUCKY 5) Cincinnati
12) WESTERN KENTUCKY 12) MISSOURI STATE
4) Seton Hall 4) Kansas
13) FURMAN 13) LIPSCOMB
Dallas Dallas
6) Arkansas 6) Clemson
11) Washington / Baylor 11) UCLA
3) WICHITA STATE 3) TCU
14) BELMONT 14) WILLIAM & MARY
Nashville San Diego
7) RHODE ISLAND 7) Florida
10) Syracuse 10) Louisville
2) PURDUE 2) Arizona State
15) WRIGHT STATE 15) MONTANA STATE
WEST – Los Angeles EAST – Boston
Detroit Pittsburgh
1) XAVIER 1) Villanova
16) ROBERT MORRIS 16) COLGATE / NC A&T
8) Notre Dame 8) Texas
9) Minnesota 9) St. Bonaventure
Boise Wichita
5) Texas AM 5) VIRGINIA
12) NEW MEXICO ST 12) LOUISIANA
4) GONZAGA 4) Texas Tech
13) SOUTH DAKOTA ST 13) BUFFALO
San Diego Charlotte
6) Florida State 6) Creighton
11) Maryland 11) Alabama / Ohio State
3) ARIZONA 3) North Carolina
14) UC-DAVIS 14) VERMONT
Wichita Pittsburgh
7) NEVADA 7) Auburn
10) Missouri 10) SMU
2) OKLAHOMA 2) West Virginia
15) RADFORD 15) CANISIUS

NOTES on the BRACKET: Duke is the No. 1 overall seed – followed by Michigan State, Villanova, and Xavier

Last Four Byes (at large): Missouri, SMU, UCLA, Maryland

Last Four IN (at large): Alabama, Washington, Baylor, Ohio State

First Four OUT (at large): Boise State, Georgia, Marquette, Houston

Next four teams OUT (at large): Boston College, Oklahoma State, Saint Mary’s, Kansas State

Breakdown by Conference …

ACC (9): VIRGINIA, Duke, North Carolina, Clemson, Florida State, Miami-FL, Notre Dame, Syracuse, Louisville

SEC (8): KENTUCKY, Texas AM, Arkansas, Tennessee, Auburn, Florida, Missouri, Alabama

BIG 12 (7): OKLAHOMA, West Virginia, TCU, Texas Tech, Kansas, Texas, Baylor

Big 10 (6): PURDUE, Michigan State, Minnesota, Michigan, Maryland, Ohio State

Big East (5): XAVIER, Villanova, Seton Hall, Creighton, Butler

Pac 12 (4): ARIZONA, Arizona State, UCLA, Washington

American (3): WICHITA STATE, Cincinnati, SMU

Atlantic 10 (2): RHODE ISLAND, St. Bonaventure

Mountain West (1): NEVADA

West Coast (1): GONZAGA

ONE BID LEAGUES: Missouri State (MVC) Canisius (MAAC), Western Ketucky (C-USA), Louisiana (SBELT), Princeton (IVY), Montana State (BSKY), Northern Kentucky (HORIZON), SE Louisiana (SLND), Furman (STHN), UC-Davis (BWEST), Buffalo (MAC), Lipscomb (ASUN), Belmont (OVC), William & Mary (CAA), Radford (BSO), North Carolina A&T (MEAC), South Dakota State (SUM), New Mexico State (WAC), Vermont (AEAST), Colgate (PAT), Robert Morris (NEC), Texas-Southern (SWAC)