"My rule was I wouldn't recruit a kid if he had grass in front of his house.
That's not my world. My world was a cracked sidewalk." —Al McGuire

Monday, February 13, 2012

CS Bracket Feb 13

The bracket is starting to solidify itself as we are less than a month away from Selection Sunday. Kentucky and Syracuse both seem like near-locks for 1-seeds. Missouri has moved up to the 1-line as well. While they have a weak non-conference SOS, wins over Baylor and Kansas while only suffering 2 losses make the Tigers impossible to ignore, though it may be to their detriment, as the last 1-seed will almost certainly play out West, which prevents Mizzou from a near-home game in St. Louis. Ohio State is the last team on the top line.


In terms of bids, the Big Ten leads the way with 9 bids, as Northwestern moves into the field. Again the Big East is one back with 8 bids. The SEC and Big 12 both have 5, the A-10, Mountain West, and ACC have 4 apiece, the West Coast and C-USA each get 3, and the Missouri Valley has 2.

The last 4 byes went to Purdue, Xavier, Illinois, and Dayton. The last 4 teams in the field are Minnesota, Colorado State, Iowa State, and UCF. The lowest RPI for an at-large team is Dayton at 71 while the lowest Pomeroy rating is Colorado State at 109.

The first four teams out are Miami, Mississippi, Wyoming, and Texas. The next four teams out are NC State, Arizona, Mississippi, and Cincinnati. The highest RPI snub is St. Joseph's at 48. The highest Pomeroy snub is Texas at 23.

For Marquette, I think this is the best bracket so far. While VCU may have magic left in those slippers, the real hope is for Marquette to either expose Murray State or reacquaint themselves with Rick Majerus in the second round. While the expected marquee match-up in the Southeast would be Kentucky v Duke, Marquette could crash that party. While it may not be the easiest path (that goes to Syracuse's paved road to the Final Four) it would be a road Marquette could successfully travel.

And at the bottom...it's a very soft bubble again. I look at teams like Iowa State, Colorado State, UCF, Texas, and Miami and there's very little difference, except that all of them look more like NIT teams than they do NCAA teams. For that matter, I'm not overly impressed with some of the higher seeds, as Seton Hall looks nothing like a 10-seed, West Virginia's 10 losses are too many to be in the field right now (yet they were an easy inclusion), and it baffles me how the slumps of teams like Xavier, Illinois, and Dayton haven't cost them bids yet.

I will be continuing to update this periodically in the thread at MUScoop. I still plan to do a weekly bracket, but for mid-week updates, check out the thread on the Scoop.

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