Monday, March 03, 2014

Bubble Watch Heading Into March 4th

March Madness is officially here as the first conference tournament of the season (the Patriot League) tipped off. For a complete schedule of action with conference tournament previews, please click here. Those Patriot League games didn't affect the bubble, of course, but conference tournament games will start impacting the bubble as early as Friday.

The biggest results of the night were Xavier and Pittsburgh suffering bad losses while Oklahoma State got a dominant win. The net result is Oklahoma State moving off the bubble with Xavier dropping back on it. Pitt is still clear of the bubble for now, so that leaves us with 17 teams fighting for 10 spots. We still have 16 tourney locks.

Teams that move up a group are colored green while teams that drop a group are colored red. Here is how the bubble stands as we head into Monday, March 4th:

Tournament locks (16 teams):
Cincinnati,  Duke, North Carolina, Syracuse, Virginia, Creighton, Villanova, Michigan, Michigan State, Wisconsin, Iowa State, Kansas, Wichita State, San Diego State, Arizona, Florida

Automatic bids yet to be awarded (32, of which 24 are not projected to be won by teams currently locked into the Tournament):
AAC, America East, ACC, Atlantic Sun, A-10, Big East, Big Sky, Big South, Big Ten, Big 12, Big West, Colonial, CUSA, Horizon, Ivy, MAAC, MAC, MEAC, MVC, MWC, NEC, OVC, Pac-12, Patriot, SEC, SoCon, Southland, Summit, Sun Belt, SWAC, WCC, WAC

Teams that look safe (16):
UConn, Louisville, Memphis, SMU, UMass, Saint Louis, VCU, Iowa, Ohio State, Kansas State, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona State, UCLA, Kentucky

Teams definitely in the Tournament... for now (7):
Pittsburgh, George Washington, Saint Joseph's, Oklahoma State, Harvard, Oregon, Gonzaga

The Bubble (17 teams for 10 bids):
Clemson, Florida State,  Georgetown, Marquette, Providence, St. John's, Xavier, Minnesota, Baylor, Southern Miss, Toledo, California, Colorado, Stanford, Arkansas, Tennessee, BYU

Best of the rest (13):
Dayton, Indiana, Nebraska, West Virginia, Louisiana Tech, Green Bay, Stephen F Austin, North Dakota State, Utah, Missouri, Boise State, Georgia, LSU

Long shots (15):
Maryland, UTEP, UNLV, Saint Mary's, NC State, Richmond, Illinois, Middle Tennessee, Ohio, Indiana State, Oregon State, Washington, Mississippi, Texas A&M, Vanderbilt


Anonymous said...

I enjoy your blog, thanks for the time you put in every day. Can you explain Clemson on your bubble? Their resume is horrible. Compare it with some of your "best of the rest"....they aren't even close?

Jeff said...

I'm giving a bit of a wide berth to the bubble this far out. I don't think their resume is really any different from Tennessee or Southern Miss. Though I agree that if the season ended now they're pretty surely be in the NIT.

Anonymous said...

I see. I just think you have a couple in the "others" category that would be well ahead of Clemson. They've got the Duke win and nothing else. I think you underrate the A10 a bit. Deep league. RPI isn't perfect, but they've got 6 in the Top 50, 9 in the Top 100, and only one over 150. Pretty impressive. Compare to AAC, which is top heavy with easy wins all over the place.

Jeff said...

I agree with you that the AAC is overrated relative to the Atlantic Ten. I feel like I was the only person talking up Memphis as a bubble team before the Louisville win. Half the league is in the tourney, but the other half stinks, and so records are inflated.

And yeah, I'm sure you can argue for one or two teams in the group below for Clemson. We'll learn a lot about this Clemson team this week. Have to win that Pitt game.

Anonymous said...

Don't get me started on Pitt.... (:

Thanks again, great blog.