Saturday, March 09, 2013

Bubble Watch: Heading Into March 9th

Well, it was a pretty slow day for the bubble. The only significant action was in the Missouri Valley, where both Creighton and Wichita State took care of business in the quarterfinals of Arch Madness. Creighton makes themselves a pretty safe NCAA Tournament team with this win. Wichita State is not quite there yet - they're definitely a Tournament team at the moment, but I think they need one more win to really feel secure in their position.

Things are obviously going to pick up much more on Saturday. We'll have a full slate of action as part of the final weekend of the regulation season for the BCS conferences. We'll also see the first automatic bids handed out, in the America East and Ohio Valley. Right now I have 21 teams listed as Tournament locks, but by the end of Saturday night I expect that number to be over 25.

Heading into Saturday, March 9th, here is how the bubble stands:

Tournament locks (21 teams):
Duke, Miami (Fl), North Carolina, Georgetown, Louisville, Marquette, Pittsburgh, Syracuse, Indiana, Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State, Wisconsin, Kansas, Kansas State, Oklahoma State, New Mexico, UNLV, Arizona, Florida, Gonzaga

Automatic bids yet to be awarded (31, of which 24 are not projected to be won by teams currently locked into the Tournament):
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 (10):
NC State, Butler, St. Louis, VCU, Notre Dame, Memphis, Creighton, Colorado State, San Diego State, Missouri

Teams definitely in the Tournament... for now (10):
Cincinnati, Villanova, Illinois, Minnesota, Iowa State, Oklahoma, Wichita State, UCLA, Colorado, Oregon,

The Bubble (10 teams for 7 bids):
Virginia, La Salle, Temple, Iowa, Boise State, California, Kentucky, Ole Miss, Tennessee, St. Mary's

Best of the rest (8):
Maryland, UMass, Baylor, Southern Miss, Arizona State, Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana Tech

Long shots (12):
Charlotte, St. Joseph's, Xavier, Florida State, Providence, St. John's, Akron, Air Force, Stanford, Washington, LSU, Middle Tennessee

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