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Almost Final Thoughts — March 16

Posted by jrswift on March 16, 2008

This will be my second-to-last posting on here. In a few hours I’ll post my Final Tournament Predictions. Things have indeed “tightened up” a bit over the last couple of days and I am getting very close to filling out the field. There are two HUGE games today that could turn the lives of a couple of bubble teams upside down. Georgia has somehow made its way to the SEC final and a win there would “steal a bid” as would a win by Illinois over Wisconsin. While I don’t think Illinois will be able to handle Wisconsin, I would not be remotely surprised if Georgia found a way to win and completed one of the greatest and craziest conference tournament runs of all time. Here is what I’ve got so far:

NCAA Tournament Field of 65


Automatic Bids (31) – Projected [31]


(Italics indicates Team in the Field)

(Bold indicates Team believed to be a lock)


America East – UMBC

Atlantic 10 – Temple

ACC – North Carolina

Atlantic Sun – Belmont

Big 12 – Texas

Big East – Pitt

Big Sky – Portland State

Big South – Winthrop

Big 10 – Wisconsin (or Illinois)

Big West – Cal State-Fullerton

Colonial – George Mason

Conference USA – Memphis

Horizon – Butler

Ivy – Cornell

Metro Atlantic – Siena

Mid American – Kent St.

Mid-Eastern – Morgan St.

Missouri Valley – Drake

Mountain West – UNLV

Northeast – Mount St. Mary’s

Ohio Valley – Austin Peay

Pac-10 – UCLA

Patriot – American

SEC – Arkansas (or Georgia)

Southern – Davidson

Southland – Northwestern St. (or Texas-Arlington)

SWAC – Mississippi Valley St.

Summit – Oral Roberts

Sun Belt – Western Kentucky

West Coast – San Diego

WAC – Boise St.















At-Large Bids (34) – Projected [27]


(Bold indicates Team believed to be a lock)





Miami (Fl)


Kansas St.


Texas A&M




Notre Dame


West Virginia



Michigan St.



Washington St.




Mississippi St.

South Alabama


St. Mary’s





















Bubble Teams [17] for seven remaining bids. Bids would be reduced by one if Georgia wins the SEC and if Illinois wins the Big 10.


St. Joseph’s +

Baylor +

Villanova +

Arizona +

Ohio St. ?

Virginia Commonwealth ?

Illinois St. ?

Oregon ?

Kentucky ?

Arizona St. ?

New Mexico –

Mississippi –

Virginia Tech –

Maryland –

Umass –

Dayton –

Syracuse –


Teams tagged with a “+” means I am leaning towards including them

Teams tagged with a “-” means I am leaning towards them being left out

Teams tagged with a “?” means I am still clueless

If we throw in my “leaners” here, that gives us a field of 62 (or is it going to be 63 or 64) and then we have to choose 1-3 teams from the “clueless” list. I guess I’d say Kentucky, Illinois St. and Oregon right now with Ohio St, Virginia Commonwealth and Arizona St. sitting it out. It is fair to say that the fans of these schools should be rooting hard for Wisconsin and Arkansas later today.

I usually don’t spend a lot of time discussing seeding but I’ll give some impressions. Despite their loss, I think Tennessee gets a 1 and the consensus that UCLA, North Carolina and Memphis are the other three “1’s” is right. Win or lose, Carolina is fine. The two seeds are going to be Texas, Kansas, Duke and either Wisconsin or Georgetown. I’d say Wisconsin gets it if they win today. The “3’s” are Georgetown, Stanford, Louisville and probably Xavier. I’d go with Drake, Butler, UConn and Pitt off their Big East tournament championship for the 4th seeds but don’t quote me on that.

I’m going to go nitpick a few teams’ schedules and profiles to death for a few hours and then I’ll be back with the final projections.







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