Tuesday, March 3, 2015

NCAA Men's Basketball - March 3rd Bracketology

Better late than never.  I will try and get more updates up in the next 10 days.  This is a fun time as there will be a lot of big games played before the bracket comes out.  The 8 teams that will occupy the top 2 seed lines are all but set in stone.  The rest of the teams are jockeying for position.  Feel free to post comments.

2015 NCAA TOURNAMENT BRACKET – March 3, 2015
MIDWEST REGION (CLEVELAND, OH)

1
Kentucky (29-0)
vs
16
St. Francis (NY) (20-10)/No. Fla. (17-11)
Louisville, KY
8
VCU (21-8)
vs
9
Xavier (18-12)
5
Northern Iowa (27-3)
vs
12
Purdue (19-10)/Davidson (20-6)
Jacksonville, FL
4
Notre Dame (24-5)
vs
13
Murray State (24-4)
6
Providence (20-9)
vs
11
Temple (20-9)
Columbus, OH
3
Iowa State (21-8)
vs
14
UC Davis (20-5)
7
SMU (22-6)
vs
10
Colorado State (23-5)
Omaha, NE
2
Wisconsin (26-3)
vs
15
South Dakota State (19-9)
EAST REGION (SYRACUSE, NY)

1
Virginia (28-1)
vs
16
TX Southern (16-12)/Bucknell (17-13)
Charlotte, NC
8
Dayton (23-6)
vs
9
Indiana (19-11)
5
West Virginia (22-7)
vs
12
Harvard (18-6)
Seattle, WA
4
Arkansas (23-6)
vs
13
Central Michigan (19-6)
6
St. John’s (19-9)
vs
11
Cincinnati (20-9)
Pittsburgh, PA
3
Maryland (25-5)
vs
14
William & Mary (16-11)
7
LSU (21-8)
vs
10
North Carolina State (17-12)
Omaha, NE
2
Kansas (23-6)
vs
15
North Carolina Central (19-6)
SOUTH REGION (HOUSTON, TX)

1
Duke (26-3)
vs
16
Albany (21-8)
Charlotte, NC
8
Georgia (19-9)
vs
9
Oklahoma State (16-11)
5
Utah (21-6)
vs
12
Louisiana Tech (22-7)
Portland, OR
4
Wichita State (26-3)
vs
13
Iona (24-7)
6
Butler (21-9)
vs
11
Texas A&M (20-8)
Louisville, KY
3
Baylor (21-8)
vs
14
Valparaiso (23-5)
7
San Diego State (21-7)
vs
10
Michigan State (19-10)
Seattle, WA
2
Gonzaga (28-2)
vs
15
New Mexico State (17-10)
WEST REGION (LOS ANGELES, CA)

1
Villanova (27-2)
vs
16
High Point (19-8)
Pittsburgh, PA
8
Ohio State (21-8)
vs
9
Oregon (21-8)
5
North Carolina (21-9)
vs
12
Wofford (23-6)
Jacksonville, FL
4
Oklahoma (20-9)
vs
13
Stephen F. Austin (21-4)
6
Georgetown (19-9)
vs
11
Boise State (20-7)/Texas (18-12)
Columbus, OH
3
Louisville (23-6)
vs
14
Georgia State (19-9)
7
Iowa (20-10)
vs
10
Mississippi (20-10)
Portland, OR
2
Arizona (26-3)
vs
15
Eastern Washington (18-8)


Tuesday, January 20, 2015

2015 NCAA Field of 68 - 1/20/15


NCAA Field of 68 – January 20, 2015

2015 NCAA TOURNAMENT BRACKET – JANUARY 20, 2015
MIDWEST REGION (CLEVELAND, OH)
 
1
Kentucky
vs
16
Grand Canyon/Colgate
Louisville, KY
8
Cincinnati
vs
9
Iowa
5
Butler
vs
12
Harvard
Jacksonville, FL
4
Notre Dame
vs
13
Iona
6
Georgetown
vs
11
Tennessee/Colorado State
Louisville, KY
3
North Carolina
vs
14
Murray State
7
Northern Iowa
vs
10
SMU
Omaha, NE
2
Kansas
vs
15
UL Monroe
EAST REGION (SYRACUSE, NY)
 
1
Virginia
vs
16
Texas Southern/North Florida
Charlotte, NC
8
LSU
vs
9
Oklahoma State
5
Seton Hall
vs
12
Tulsa
Jacksonville, FL
4
VCU
vs
13
Wofford
6
Baylor
vs
11
Miami FL
Pittsburgh, PA
3
Maryland
vs
14
Northeastern
7
Stanford
vs
10
George Washington
Pittsburgh, PA
2
Villanova
vs
15
Coastal Carolina
SOUTH REGION (HOUSTON, TX)
 
1
Wisconsin
vs
16
St. Francis (NY)
Columbus, OH
8
Old Dominion
vs
9
Dayton
5
West Virginia
vs
12
Syracuse/Washington
Columbus, OH
4
Wichita State
vs
13
Green Bay
6
Texas
vs
11
St. John’s
Portland, OR
3
Utah
vs
14
UC Davis
7
Indiana
vs
10
Xavier
Charlotte, NC
2
Duke
vs
15
North Carolina Central
WEST REGION (LOS ANGELES, CA)
 
1
Gonzaga
vs
16
Albany
Seattle, WA
8
San Diego State
vs
9
Georgia
5
Oklahoma
vs
12
Buffalo
Seattle, WA
4
Louisville
vs
13
Eastern Washington
6
Arkansas
vs
11
North Carolina State
Omaha, NE
3
Iowa State
vs
14
Stephen F Austin
7
2
Providence
Arizona
vs
vs
10
15
Michigan State
North Dakota State
Portland, OR
 

The 1’s – Kentucky, Virginia, Gonzaga and Wisconsin
Kentucky and Virginia are no-brainers at this point.  Both of these teams have separated themselves enough that even one loss will not take them off the coveted 1-line.  The fact that we can say that about Kentucky is no surprise, but you have to give Tony Bennett a ton of kudos for what he has done at Virginia.  Gonzaga is here as long as they have one-loss.  Playing in the WCC means almost any loss is damaging.  I also think the committee will have in the back of their minds the last time Gonzaga earned the #1 two seasons ago.  Right now I have the final #1 as Wisconsin.  Despite a head-to-head loss to Duke, Wisconsin has two advantages that give them this slot.  First, they are currently tied atop the Big 10, while Duke is 2 games back in the ACC.  Second, one of the Badgers losses came without Frank Kaminsky, a factor that the committee will consider.  This really makes Wisconsin more like a 1.5 loss team at this point.

Kentucky – MIDWEST via Louisville
Virginia – EAST via Charlotte
Gonzaga – WEST via Seattle
Wisconsin – SOUTH via Columbus

The 2’s – Duke, Arizona, Villanova, Kansas
A quality group of 2 seeds, all still with very realistic aspirations for a top seed.  Duke righted the ship after consecutive losses, but needs to continue to be the defensive team that showed up against Louisville.  Villanova took a rough loss Monday, but still has the resume to be on solid footing here.  Arizona won round one with Utah to establish themselves as the PAC-12 leader.  Kansas edges out Maryland for the final #2 based on their SOS and 7 top 50 wins. 
 
Duke – SOUTH via Charlotte
Arizona – WEST via Portland
Villanova – EAST via Pittsburgh
Kansas - MIDWEST via Omaha

The 3’s – Maryland, Utah, Iowa State, North Carolina
Maryland and Utah are two of the more pleasant surprises in College Basketball.  I would not sleep on either of these teams come March, no matter what seed they end up at.  North Carolina has weathered a very tough schedule to 9 top-100 wins.  Iowa State is starting to pile up the quality wins and has the signature win over Kansas.  Ultimately, it is the number of quality wins and the conference strength that separate these teams from Wichita State and VCU at this point.
 
Maryland – EAST via Pittsburgh
Utah – SOUTH via Portland
Iowa State – WEST via Omaha
North Carolina – MIDWEST via Louisville

The 4’s – Wichita State, VCU, Notre Dame, Louisville
The Shockers and Rams have excellent resumes bolstered by non-conference SOS of #6 and #1, respectively.  Thus far they are both cruising through their conference schedules, which rank at #150 and #142, respectively, hurting the upward mobility of these teams.  Notre Dame has one of those resumes that make you scratch your head as a bracketologist.  They have two quality losses, wins at UNC plus home vs Michigan State and Miami FL.  On the converse, they have 6 sub-245 wins, putting an anchor on their RPI.  I have some theories on these RPI anchors, but that is for another day.  Louisville might have the best collection of losses (Kentucky, UNC, Duke) of any team in the country, but they don’t have the same collection of wins.  West Virginia also lacks that signature win, giving Louisville the last top 4 seed with better Sagarin and Kenpom than the Mountaineers.

Wichita State – SOUTH via Columbus
VCU – EAST via Jacksonville
Notre Dame – MIDWEST via Jacksonville
Louisville – WEST via Seattle

The 5’s – West Virginia, Seton Hall, Butler, Oklahoma
West Virginia has a very solid resume, but still needs to find more big wins in the Big 12.  Seton Hall’s resume isn’t sexy, but they have no bad losses and a signature win over Villanova.  Butler and Oklahoma are both 6 loss teams that have more quality wins than anyone else below them.  Right now that is my tie-breaker, but if some of the 6’s and 7’s add quality wins, these two could fall without losing.

West Virginia – SOUTH via Columbus
Seton Hall – EAST via Jacksonville
Butler – MIDWEST via Jacksonville
Oklahoma – WEST via Seattle

The 6’s – Georgetown, Texas, Arkansas, Baylor
The teams start to have more flaws as you get to this point.  Georgetown got the huge win they were missing over Villanova, while Baylor owns one over Iowa State.  Texas has no bad losses but could still use a boost to their quality wins.  Arkansas has dropped two in a row and must turn it around.

Georgetown – MIDWEST via Louisville
Texas – SOUTH via Portland
Arkansas – WEST via Omaha
Baylor – EAST via Pittsburgh

The 7’s – Indiana, Northern Iowa, Providence, Stanford
I like what Indiana is putting together, with wins over SMU, Butler and Ohio State and only a semi-bad loss to Eastern Washington.  Northern Iowa is going to suffer from a mediocre conference schedule.  NIU likely has to beat Wichita State at least once to retain a high seeding.  Providence has 4 really good win, an RPI of 22 and a loss to Brown (paired with losses to Boston College and Marquette).  Where they should fall is a good question.  Stanford has a similar head-scratching loss to DePaul, but has wins over Texas and Washington that help. 

Indiana – SOUTH via Charlotte
Northern Iowa – MIDWEST via Omaha
Providence – WEST via Portland
Stanford - EAST via Pittsburgh

The 8’s – Old Dominion, Cincinnati, San Diego State, LSU
Old Dominion has two really good wins over VCU and LSU.  If they can avoid really bad losses in a bad Conference USA, they should have an at-large resume that stands up even if they falter in the C-USA tourney.  Cincinnati has a group of quality wins and for once did not play an eyesore of a non-conference schedule.  The Aztecs have a really good win over Utah and a really bad loss against Fresno State.  LSU has beaten West Virginia and Georgia, but has a bad loss against Missouri.  These teams need avoid a second bad loss or the bubble will be a likely destination.

Old Dominion – SOUTH via Columbus
Cincinnati – MIDWEST via Louisville
San Diego State – WEST via Seattle
LSU – EAST via Charlotte

The 9’s – Dayton, Iowa, Oklahoma State, Georgia
Dayton is in the same boat as Northern Iowa, as the Atlantic 10 is not quite as strong as years past.  The Flyers also have to play Davidson, George Washington and VCU all only on the road.  Those games will likely determine their ultimate seeding.  The Hawkeyes don’t have any really bad losses and can hang their hats on a road win at North Carolina.  Oklahoma State and Georgia could both use more quality wins to support decent computer numbers, but are solidly in at this juncture.

Dayton – SOUTH via Columbus
Iowa – MIDWEST via Louisville
Oklahoma State – EAST via Charlotte
Georgia – WEST via Seattle

The 10’s – Michigan State, Xavier, SMU, George Washington
Just when it seemed Michigan State was back up to their Izzoan ways, Maryland made them look like a second level team once again.  They have very few chances for an eye-opening victory remaining, but plenty of chances for an eye-opening loss.  Stay tuned.  Xavier is a home-court hero that needs to do some roadwork soon.  The quality wins are there, just all at home.  SMU does not have the quality wins, but is sparked by quality losses and good computer numbers.  George Washington has a win over Wichita State leading their resume.
 
Michigan State – WEST via Portland
Xavier – SOUTH via Charlotte
SMU – MIDWEST via Omaha
George Washington – EAST via Pittsburgh

The 11’s – St. John’s, Miami FL, North Carolina State
Miami FL and NC State are here mainly due to wins over Duke.  That cannot be the last good win for either team or they are in trouble.  St. John’s now has a bad loss to DePaul to carry around.  The Big East has lots of possibilities to bolster their resume remaining, but they look bubblicious for now.

St. John’s – SOUTH via Portland
Miami FL – EAST via Pittsburgh
North Carolina State – WEST via Omaha

The 11’s/12’s - Tennessee, Colorado State, Syracuse, Washington
The Last 4 in are represented here.  Colorado State needs to avoid bad losses and could use a win over San Diego State before the year is through.  Tennessee has a couple of good wins and looks strongest of this bunch.  Syracuse’s best win is Iowa, a team that defeated Ohio State twice.  Therefore the Buckeyes are on the outside looking in right now despite what Kenpom and Sagarin say.  Washington, despite a 4-game losing streak, has a top 50 RPI and some quality wins.  Besides Ohio State, some others in the receiving consideration area in no particular order are St. Mary’s, Texas A&M, Ole Miss, Temple, BYU, Illinois, Florida, UCLA and Kansas State.

Tennessee/Ohio State – MIDWEST via Louisville
Colorado State/Syracuse – SOUTH via Columbus

The 12’s – Tulsa, Harvard, Buffalo
Tulsa – EAST via Jacksonville
Harvard – MIDWEST via Jacksonville
Buffalo – WEST via Seattle

The 13’s – Wofford, Green Bay, Iona, Eastern Washington
Wofford – EAST via Jacksonville
Green Bay – SOUTH via Columbus
Iona -  MIDWEST via Jacksonville
Eastern Washington – WEST via Seattle

The 14’s – Northeastern, UC Davis, Stephen F Austin, Murray State
Northeastern – EAST via Pittsburgh
UC Davis – SOUTH via Portland
Stephen F Austin – WEST via Omaha
Murray State – MIDWEST via Louisville

The 15’s – North Carolina Central, Coastal Carolina, North Dakota State, UL Monroe
North Carolina Central – SOUTH via Charlotte
Coastal Carolina – EAST via Pittsburgh
North Dakota State – WEST via Portland
UL Monroe – MIDWEST via Omaha

The 16’s – St. Francis (NY), Albany, Texas Southern, Grand Canyon, North Florida, Colgate
St. Francis (NY) – SOUTH via Columbus
Albany – WEST via Seattle
Texas Southern/North Florida – EAST via Charlotte
Grand Canyon/Colgate – MIDWEST via Louisville