This Week's Bracket
Big Ten (8)
Big 12 (7)
Big East (5)
Mountain West (2)
Missouri Valley (2)
Conference USA (2)
With just over a month until Selection Sunday, the bracket is beginning to take shape. As always the two areas of the bracket receiving the most attention are the top of the bracket and the teams on the proverbial bubble.
I’ll start by breaking down where the top teams stand at the moment. Kentucky remains the far and away number one overall seed. Gonzaga and Virginia are the next two teams on the top line. The Zags, as usual, are lacking in the schedule strength department due to the relative weakness of the WCC. Their only setback this season has been a three-point loss at Arizona – not a bad loss by any means. The schedule element is a legitimate knock against Gonzaga, but if they should get the one seed in the West region if they keep winning.
Virginia suffered its first loss of the season to Duke, but that alone was nowhere enough to remove them from the one seed consideration. The Cavs still appear to be one of the top teams in the nation, but will have to deal with the loss of Justin Anderson going forward.
Speaking of Duke, the Blue Devils are holding down the final one seed this week. Duke has the best win of any team in America to date with that upset at Virginia. That, combined with a win at Louisville, an absolute dismantling of Notre Dame in a revenge game and a nonconference win at Wisconsin, has been enough to ensure two ACC teams are on the top line.
With recent losses by Kansas and Arizona to Oklahoma State and Arizona State, respectively, Wisconsin has reclaimed the top spot on the two seed line. The Badgers continue to trend upward and are knocking on the door of the one seeds, while also ensuring they will not be in Kentucky’s region if they remain a two.
The Atlantic-10 is flying under the radar, as usual, as George Washington, after knocking off Dayton. currently sits in the “Last Four In.” Rhode Island is in this week’s Next Four Out but a run in the A-10 Tournament could put the Rams in position to sneak into the tournament.
The ACC has three teams currently on serious bubble watch, North Carolina State, Miami and Clemson. Miami stumbled mightily after their upset at Duke, dropping four of six, but beat Clemson Sunday night in a game both teams needed in a big way.
The SEC seems to have a new team on the bubble every week. Right now, Texas A&M, LSU, Ole Miss and Tennessee all lie someplace between the 10 line and “Next Four Out.” Georgia is in the 8-9 seed range right now, and Alabama just recently fell out of consideration. Seeing as there are eight conference games remaining for most of these teams, the clutter in the middle of the SEC will eventually sort itself out.
Selection Sunday will be here before we know it, so stay up to date on twitter with the latest bracket-impacting games and #BubbleWatch updates on @ScoutBrackets.
Last Four In: George Washington, Purdue, LSU, Illinois
First Four Out: Miami, North Carolina State, Seton Hall, St. John's
Next Out: Kansas State, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Clemson
New to the Field
- Ole Miss
Left the Field
- Seton Hall
- North Carolina State