Monday, February 20, 2006

Bracket Update 2/20

I. Last Slots Getting Interesting
Peruse today's new bracket. In my estimation, there were about eleven bubble slots today and some of those filled in fairly easily. There seems to be about eight slots that are truly up for grabs because I don't think anyone is going to leave out Cal, Kentucky, or Syracuse at this point, although they are still Bubble teams. Here are the last eight I selected in order of security:

Arkansas, Arizona, Southern Illinois, Cincinnati, Colorado, UAB, UNC-Wilmington, Bradley

These teams were close to getting into the bracket, especially the first two:

Maryland, Air Force, Indiana, Florida State, Utah State, Hofstra, Vanderbilt, South Carolina

1. Villanova reclaims a 1-seed based on the thrashing that Texas took at OK State yesterday and on the Cats excellent play. The Longhorns have thrown up a couple of clunkers this season (home vs Tennessee and yesterday).

2. Like all of their Big Ten predecessors, Ohio State lost in their week after climbing to a 2-seed, but so did a lot of other contenders. The Buckeyes hang in at a 2-seed this week.

3. Colorado had a real chance to solidify themselves after the home win vs Oklahoma, then they go out and lose by double-digits to K-State. Back to the Bubble for the Buffs, though they did stay in...barely.

4. Kentucky greatly helped their case and greatly damaged South Carolina's with their win in Columbia.

5. Am I crazy for putting SIX MVC teams in? Yes, I am. For SIU, Missouri State, and Bradley, it's probably going to come down to conference tourney performance. But as of today, they have worthy profiles, although Bradley was my last team in.

6. I have a little rule that I follow. If you are 3-7 in your last ten, you don't get in barring some amazing circumstances. Sorry, Indiana. You are out until you prove otherwise. In fact, the Hoosiers are 1-7 in their last eight with the lone win coming at home over Northwestern.

Multi-bid Conference Breakdown
Big East (9): UConn, Villanova, Pitt, West Virginia, Georgetown, Marquette, Seton Hall, Syracuse, Cincinnati
Big Ten (6): Ohio State, Iowa, Illinois, Michigan State, Wisconsin, Michigan
SEC (6): Tennessee, Florida, LSU, Alabama, Kentucky, Arkansas
MVC (6): Northern Iowa, Wichita State, Creighton, Southern Illinois, Missouri State, Bradley
ACC (4): Duke, NC State, Boston College, North Carolina
Big 12 (4): Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Colorado
Pac-10 (4): UCLA, Arizona, Washington, California
CUSA (2): Memphis, UAB
Colonial (2): George Mason, UNC-Wilmington

Last Four Teams In: Colorado, UAB, UNC-Wilmington, Bradley

First Four Out: Maryland, Air Force, Indiana, Florida State

We are less than three weeks away from SelSun. Lockbox coming on Wednesday. Hopefully I will have time for another bracket on Friday.

II. As of today, the Sun Belt Tournament bracket would look like this.

III. Tonight's GOI
--West Virginia at Syracuse. Orange will breathe a lot easier if they take of the Eers at home.
--South Alabama at FIU. Jags wrap up the West with a win tonight.