Kansas Bracketology

KU's recent three game skid has really hurt the Jayhawks chances of a guaranteed number one seed and a potential smooth road to St. Louis. However, the Jayhawks can still but themselves in a respectable position for post season play assuming they take care of business from here on out.

ESPN.com's Joe Lunardi stopped by KLWN's Rock Chalk Sports Talk before the Oklahoma game to discuss the seeding possibiites involving Kansas.

Currently, the four number one seeds are Illinois, North Carolina, Boston College, and Wake Forrest, but Lunardi feels a Big 12 school could grab a top spot.

"I do fully expect a the Big 12 will have a number one when were looking at brackets in three weeks," said Lunardi.

Oklahoma State could just about guarantee itself a top seed with a win on Sunday in Lawrence assuming the Pokes take care of business in their remaining regular season games (Nebraska 2/22, Texas A&M 3/2, Texas 3/5).

After Monday's loss in Norman, Kansas is obviously on the extreme outside looking in for a one seed, but the Jayhawks do have some things working in their favor including the Ratings Percentage Index (RPI).

"I'm still looking at what I call an RPI grand slam for Kansas. They have the number one RPI, the number one strength of schedule, the number one non conference RPI, and the number one non conference strength of schedule. I've never seen it this late in the year with one team being number one in all four categories, it's not impossible for Kansas to move back up," said Lunardi.

According to the most recent version of Bracketology, KU has played or will hook up with thirteen teams who will be invited to this year's big dance.

KU can still capture at least a share of the Big 12 crown with a win on Sunday versus Oklahoma State. The Jayhawks could also solidify themselves as a top two seed assuming they take care of business versus K-State at home and at Mizzou to conclude the regular season.

"What I think will happen if Kansas beats Oklahoma State, they will stay as a two. If they lose, it's possible but not necessarily a guarantee that they would slide to a three. That would require some of the three seeds proving they're worthy to move up. You wouldn't want to lose four in a row, the chances are probably 60/40 that would result in a number 3 seed."

The conference had a weak showing with only four teams making the NCAA's last year, but as of right now up to six teams (KU, OSU, Oklahoma, Texas Tech, Iowa State, and Texas) could be playing in the 65 team field in 2005. Lunardi feels the Longhorns are the biggest question mark with two weeks remaining in the regular season.

"I think it's up to Texas, I believe the other five or going to make it. Iowa State needs another couple of wins but the committee always wants teams who finish strong. I think Texas and their recent recovery without Tucker and Aldridge has been a little bit a product of playing the bottom feeders of the league. They still have to prove something to me, but my gut is that they will."

A fresh edition of Bracketology appears each and every Monday during college basketball season on ESPN.com.

Rock Chalk Sports Talk airs weekdays from 4 to 6 p.m. in Northeast Kansas on Lawrence's News Talk 1320 KLWN and worldwide on phog.net via streaming audio. (Premium members only.)


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